Linux Foundation Survey: Users Want Open Source Cloud
How important is open source to the cloud? If you ask the Linux Foundation, you’ll be told it’s absolutely essential — which is, of course, exactly what an organization such as the Linux Foundation would say. But now the group has hard data to back up these claims. Read on for a look at the numbers.
Just in time for the CloudOpen 2012 event, the Linux Foundation released the results of a user survey by IDC regarding preferences for cloud computing. The data is based on the responses of 282 users working at companies with at least 500 employees.
The Cloud and Open Source
In the eyes of the individuals surveyed, at least, the numbers suggest strongly that open source software and the cloud go together like chocolate and peanut butter. According to the data, which was shared with The VAR Guy in an email:
- 94 percent of Windows and Linux users surveyed say collaboration and a vibrant open source ecosystem are important for cloud adoption
- 72 percent of businesses say that the use of open source software, open standards and/or open APIs are key factors when choosing a cloud provider or building their own cloud
- Running on Linux and open APIs are among the top five characteristics important to an open cloud
- 47 percent of users plan to add more Linux and open source software in the next 12 months to support their cloud plans
Like all surveys, of course, this one has limitations. For one, the Linux Foundation has not announced exactly which companies were represented. If a majority of them are heavily invested in the open source channel already, their employees are likely to express a preference for open source in implementing cloud infrastructures.
It’s also not clear in which positions the employees questioned are working, or how much real influence they have on their organizations’ IT future plans. It’s one thing to say you’d like to see your employer implement more open source technology in the cloud, but another to make sure it happens.
Still, the information available indicates that building cloud environments on open source technology is a major priority of at least some personnel at many large organizations. That’s a finding that’s not only consistent with the recent enlistment of several major cloud-oriented companies in the Linux Foundation, but also reflects the lessons of the past — when many organizations came to regret building IT infrastructures on proprietary standards that locked them in for years.