But many companies are eager to take on the challenge of migrating to Linux. Henry and his 42-person IT staff selected Linux as the operating system because they decided it was stable and scalable, and it lowered the cost of ownership in the short term as well as the long term.
"We decided we were going to implement Linux before we choose the hardware," says Regal's chief technologist. "We did code development internally. We were able to identify, spec it, and select a workstation in 90 days.
"You need to look at a lot of things" when evaluating Linux, Henry says. "In addition to cost, you look at its stability and any support issues over the long term, such as who else is going to be using it in the future." An IBM engineer was available to help with any initial integration issues.
The savings were clear-cut. "We saved [on having] to pay a Windows license at every point of sale," he says, "and we will have 4,000 [terminals]."