Building An Open Source Server Stack
Selling Linux-based servers is old news. The VAR Guy is telling solutions providers to move up the software stack. It’s time to focus on LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) and other related open-source applications.
How can you get started? Check out SpikeSource, a Silicon Valley startup that promotes open source server stacks. Is SpikeSource a distributor or software developer? The answer is both, according to Paul Salazar, senior director of corporate marketing. Since SpikeSource works with multiple flavors of Linux and multiple applications, the company must write some code that integrates third-party software into full-blown solutions.
The strategy reminds The VAR Guy of Microsoft’s BackOffice initiative around 1995. At the time, Microsoft was striving to deliver an integrated server stack — featuring SQL Server, SNA Server, Exchange Server, Systems Management Server, etc. — to increase the overall value of Windows NT.
SpikeSource is fortunate because it doesn’t have to develop server applications from scratch. Instead, it’s working with Sugar CRM and other open-source developers. But that also introduces new challenges that Microsoft didn’t have, since SpikeSource must constantly adjust its server stacks to support the latest third-party software updates.
Although SpikeSource is relatively new to the channel, the company expects to have 200+ partners by the close of 2007. Interested? Let me know at the address below.