Despite prior predictions Microsoft Windows NT is unlikely to replace Unix in the enterprise before the millennium.
Although the operating system is likely to decimate the lower, OS/2 and Netware end of the market - it is far behind Unix technically and customers will not delay their mission critical plans to wait for it.
This is the opinion of market research company Forrester Research. In its latest report which surveyed 50 senior IT managers in Fortune 1,000 companies, the researchers found that 76 per cent of companies have included both Unix and NT in their server operating system plans while only 24 per cent said that they would standardise on NT.
According to the report, 66 per cent of IT managers believe that Unix scales well while 62 per cent declare that NT does not.
?Users understand that Unix and NT have a role to play,? said Jon Olstik senior analyst at Forrester and author of the report. ?While NT?s low-cost, desktop connectivity and ease-of-use are seductive, its immaturity and limited scalability make it too scary for bet-the-business applications. Unix servers may be expensive and complex, but IT managers are not waiting for NT to catch up - they are buying new Unix servers for packaged applications, data warehouses, and the Internet,? he said.
Oltsik believes that over the next three years NT will take ownership of the workgroup killing OS/2 and putting a huge dent in the Netware market. This will result in NT shipments soaring from 465,000 units in 1996 to 936,000 in 1999.
But, he concludes, NT will not have the technical capabilities, maturity and industry support to impact the Unix market until the year 2000.
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