November 27th 2002
By Mike Flaminio
Yahoo News is carrying a story detailing why hosting companies are adding Apple's Xserve to their server farms.
Among others Clear Channel Worldwide -- an advertising, broadcasting and entertainment behemoth -- plans to add 40 Xserves before year's end. This move comes in part because companies such as Sybase and Oracle are offering enterprise-class software for the platform.
Hardware, software reliability
A factor that previously hamstrung Apple's efforts to penetrate the enterprise may now be an asset -- the tight hardware/software integration that's built into every Xserve is an appealing selling point for corporate buyers.
"There are very few platforms where the operating system and the hardware are created in one organization," one analyst is quoted as saying in the article. "With the conjoinment of [its] operating system and hardware, we see a much more complete form of support and service because there's a single point of accountability."
FreeBSD underpinnings and an industry-leading GUI, as well as enterprise-class support from Apple makes the Xserve a highly attractive package overall. Further, with super-crunchy I/O performance and rock-solid stability, it's a matter of some wonder corporate switchers aren't more numerous.
Mac-focussed hosting companies, such as Xrack, have taken up the cudgel and are offering dedicated services. This is to be expected from the "faithful," but Apple will need to appeal to more than just "us" to win over the other 95-plus percent of the enterprise market.
Do you have a Xserve "switch" story to tell?