Europe's Largest Railway Selects Novell's SUSE LINUX for Large Scale Server Migration

  • Consolidation cuts costs while improving IT operating efficiencies

30 March 2005

Deutsche Bahn, Germany’s national railway company, has selected Linux* as its strategic server platform. Currently DB Systems, the IT service provider of Deutsche Bahn, is running more than 300 Intel-based servers with critical business applications on Novell's SUSE® LINUX Enterprise Server. Applications like Lotus Notes* have now been migrated to the IBM* mainframe platform also using SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server. DB Systems expects significant cost savings, more vendor independence and integration advantages throughout the roll-out period and beyond.

“We had to choose a system that would offer us the flexibility, security and reliability required to maintain a high level of services to our customers. We are confident that a Linux based system can offer us this more cost effectively than any proprietary solutions,” said Detlef Exner, director of IT Production for DB Systems.

Following that strategy, DB Systems evaluated several options and selected SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server due to its scalable, high-performance foundation for secure enterprise computing. Exner adds, “Novell's ability to offer extensive support for SUSE LINUX and its co-operation with many hardware and software vendors has given us additional confidence to use this also for our mission-critical tasks.”

Key deciding factors were the ability to run the SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server software on all major hardware platforms, the easy access to German speaking technical Novell staff for 3rd level support issues and the advanced system management tools within the solution, which help to reduce administration and maintenance expenditures.

“Its open management capabilities combined with a reliable release cycle and a complete enterprise software ecosystem for Linux including technical support, training, consulting and indemnification, make SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server a good choice,” said Ingo Schwarzer, senior manager for Data Center solutions and architecture for DB Systems.

Richard Seibt, president, Novell Europe, Middle East and Africa, said, “Novell has built its support philosophy around standing behind customers rather than providing point support for a single technology or product. Our experience in supporting Linux interoperability with other systems and applications was essential for the success of this project.”

DB Systems leveraged Novell's Linux skills to evaluate the viability and cost advantages of a Linux solution. This enabled DB Systems to develop a deployment framework, which included the migration and deployment of Deutsche Bahn's key applications in a three-phased project.

Phase one included migrating 55,000 Lotus Notes users to SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server running on an IBM eServer zSeries* 990 mainframe, as well as the migration of a mission-critical train timetabling system from UNIX* to SUSE LINUX. Roughly half of the targeted servers have already been migrated successfully, and the next phase, currently being implemented, includes the migration of SAP services to SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server. The last phase, expected to be completed by the end of 2005, includes the migration of DB Systems Web servers and remaining network infrastructure servers, including database and application servers.

About Novell

Novell, Inc. (Nasdaq: NOVL) is a leading provider of infrastructure software and services to over 50,000 customers in 43 countries. With more than 20 years of experience in data center, workgroup and desktop solutions, Novell's 6,000 employees, 5,000 partners and support centers around the world are meeting customer requirements for identity-driven computing and Linux solutions. By providing enterprise-class software and support for commercial and open source software, Novell delivers increased operating flexibility and choice at a lower total cost of ownership. More information about Novell can be found at

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