IBM in conjunction with Red Hat today announced the introduction of a Solaris-to-Linux server migration program that includes a “Solaris to Linux Migration Factory,” and additional solutions and support offerings designed to help customers migrate from Solaris to multi-platform Linux servers.

The service includes for the first time a pre-funded, pre-sales migration assessment from IBM Systems & Technology Group for qualified customers that will result in no charge to the customer for the assessment, and will help them answer difficult questions and determine the right migration strategy to Linux. Once the assessment is completed and the customer decides they want to continue with the migration, then IBM’s Migration Factory is engaged.

IBM has completed more than 500 HP/UX and Solaris-to-AIX customer migration engagements since early 2004 and is now bringing that knowledge and expertise to an extended customer set focused on migrations to Linux with this announcement. The service will enable customers in all industries to more quickly migrate to a Linux environment, including those in the Wall Street and financial services sectors.

IBM also announced today that another wave of 22 financial services ISVs have committed to porting 48 Solaris applications to Linux on IBM’s eServer platform since last year, of which 33 are already available as of today. Last year, IBM identified a total of 24 ISVs and 58 applications in interviews with 23 of the top Wall Street companies as the most critical applications to target for Solaris-to-Linux porting.

The adoption of Linux by formerly Solaris-exclusive ISVs is expected to expand even faster with the recent introduction of IBM eServer Application Advantage for Linux, also known as the Chiphopper offering, the IT industry’s first combination of support and testing tools that is helping to deliver on the promise of a cross-platform Linux solution for ISVs. Since its introduction in February of this year, the Chiphopper offering has resulted in more than 100 new applications being available on IBM eServers running Linux.

While the Chiphopper offering focuses on helping ISVs to move their applications to Linux, today’s Solaris-to-Linux customer migration initiative is designed to help enable customers to move workloads from Solaris to multi-platform Linux faster and easier than in the past.

“A Solaris-to-Linux migration is nothing new at IBM. In fact, since IBM began its Linux journey several years ago, we estimate that more than 3,000 of our approximately 12,000 Linux customer engagements have been with customers moving from a Solaris environment to Linux,” said Scott Handy, vice president of worldwide Linux for IBM. “With volumes like these, we really needed a factory approach. And based on our experience, the number-one issue is that customers don’t know just how easy a UNIX-to-Linux migration is, which is why we are offering to cover the cost of the initial assessment for qualified customers. The credibility of our migration specialists working with real customers wanting to get to Linux, combined with our cost effective Linux solutions and capabilities, usually results in a customer either embarking on a successful migration with us or with one of our business partners.”

“Enterprise migration from Solaris to Linux is inevitable. Working with IBM we will make the transition from Solaris to Red Hat Enterprise Linux as efficient and easy as possible,” said Paul Cormier, Executive Vice President of Engineering at Red Hat. “The Chiphopper and Migration Factory programs offer clear concise plans to both customers and ISVs to make the move.”

Solaris to Linux Multi-Platform Program Offerings

*Pre-Funded Solaris-to-Linux Migration Assessments – For the first time ever, IBM through its Systems & Technology Group is offering to qualified customers a no charge, pre-funded assessment for migrations to Linux on IBM eServer xSeries, BladeCenter, iSeries, pSeries, OpenPower and zSeries platforms.  The assessment fees will be covered by IBM up front and the assessments will assist customers looking at both business and technical considerations associated with migrating from Solaris to Linux without making a large up front investment. The team is also capable of assessing the movement of Solaris-attached storage to IBM TotalStorage to further reduce costs and simplify the customer’s environment.

*IBM Migration Factory Services for Linux – These for-fee services will include access to IBM Migration Factory personnel to help customers migrate from Solaris C/C++ environments to Linux as well as to migrate Oracle databases from non-IBM Windows and Unix platforms to Red Hat and Novell SUSE Linux on IBM platforms.  The IBM Migration Factory leverages industry leading IBM technology and methodologies to provide the capability to rapidly analyze, identify porting issues, and remediate code issues so that it can be compiled and linked.

*Solaris-to-Linux-on-OpenPower Roadshow – These two-day events will be held in 35 cities around the world over the next few months.  IBM is expecting more than 3,500 customers, Business Partners, ISVs, and VARs worldwide to showcase Linux solutions and services to customers and solution providers.  Seminar attendees will learn about the value of Linux on Power architectures, the OpenPower advantages in Linux, as well as the business value proposition with OpenPower Linux solutions and technologies and strategies for Solaris-to-Linux on IBM migrations.

As part of today’s announcement, IBM is also offering a host of seminars and educational materials to help customers migrate.  They include:

*Charting a Course to Linux – During these half-day summits hosted by Ziff Davis Media, and presented by IBM, Intel and Red Hat, “Charting a Course to Linux” is designed for IT managers within the financial services and government sectors.  Participants will hear how Linux’s subscription-based licensing model ensures predictable IT budgets.

*Solaris-to-Linux Education Events – For developers seeking in-depth education on key topics around migration from Unix to Linux, IBM will offer a series of one-day seminars to provide detailed technical information beginning in mid-May. Topics covered include performance tuning, data migration from Unix to Linux, and open source tools.

*Solaris-to-Linux Seminars for SMBs through IBM Business Partners – These seminars are targeted to small- and medium-sized business customers who currently have workloads running on Unix/Solaris, and are considering Linux as a potential option as their next platform.  Seminars will be provided by IBM Business.

Partners who must be xSeries resellers and part of the IBM Partnerworld Leaders for Linux program. IBM is providing these business partners with a Solaris-to-Linux seminar-in-a-box, Solaris-to-Linux migration training, and Solaris-to-Linux sales kits.

In addition, IBM is providing extensive support to its Business Partners on Solaris-to-Linux migrations to complement today’s new services and offerings to customers, providing more skilled assistance than before in this high-demand area. For the latest information on all of the new components of the Solaris-to-Linux migration program please visit

“As a twenty-year IBM partner on the AIX platform, we are excited about IBM’s continuing push into the Linux environment,” says Mitch Farbstein, vice president, Feith Systems. “IBM’s implementation of Linux on POWER and on the eServer zSeries provides a truly scalable platform family that can support Feith’s large-scale installations. IBM’s Linux environment has made the migration of Feith Document Database, running on Informix and DB2, a very straightforward exercise. We are working closely with IBM on this as they are clearly the leader in the Linux space.”