IBM has chosen New York as the venue for its first ever Linux test centre.
Situated in Big Blue's Madison Avenue offices, the new Linux Centre of Competence will be just a few miles from the heart of Wall Street, its principal target.
IBM is aiming directly at the financial community by giving some of the highest spending IT executives in the world an array of hardware and software resources for testing applications on Linux as well as IBM software and equipment.
"We are seeing increasing interest in Linux among financial institutions," said Adam Jollans, Linux strategy manager for IBM's software division.
"Many customers are reaching the stage where they need these facilities to try out applications and study their performance in detail."
IBM has more than 40 financial services industry customers in the US already using its Linux products, with about 20 of those located in New York, according to Jollans. This includes at least one IBM mainframe running Linux, he added.
The Centre of Competence will house a test facility with IBM eServer products and mainframes running Linux and IBM's middleware including WebSphere application server software, its DB2 databases and Lotus and Tivoli Systems software.
It will also host software and technical support from a number of independent software vendors. SunGard Systems, J.D. Edwards, Veritas Software and Sybase will all have their Linux-tuned software running at the Centre.
On the operating system side, SuSE Linux is to provide installation and technical support, while technical staff from IBM Global Services will evaluate and test customer applications.
Big Blue is investing around $1m in hardware, software and services at the Centre, and confirmed that it is the only such facility it plans to open.
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