Oregon Department of Transportation Migrates Statewide System to SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server from Novell


  • Moving driver's license management system to Linux increases service uptime to 99 percent and reduces software costs by 30 percent

22 March 2005

Novell announced today that the Department of Transportation for the State of Oregon is migrating critical components of its driver's license management system to Novell's SUSE® LINUX Enterprise Server running on an IBM zSeries mainframe. By switching to Linux*, the Department of Transportation has increased the system uptime to 99 percent while significantly reducing related IT administration costs. Adopting an open source solution has enabled the Department to realize a 30 percent reduction in software costs, benefiting Oregon tax payers.

“The biggest advantages of SUSE LINUX are reliability, performance and cost,” said Steve Adams, senior systems administrator at the Oregon Department of Transportation. “We are saving a great deal of money with the ability to run it on Intel-based hardware, as well as mainframes. There’s a big belief out there that mainframes are expensive, but mainframes running Linux are not.”

The Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT), with approximately 4,500 employees, provides a safe and efficient transportation system for a population of approximately 3.6 million Oregonians. ODOT had been using a custom-built mainframe system for handling driver's licenses statewide, but the system was difficult to manage or upgrade. Replacing the system was not an option because of the high acquisition cost, so ODOT evaluated multiple solutions and selected SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server for the IBM zSeries mainframe because of its reliability, robustness and security and Novell's extensive support offering. Using open source development tools, ODOT was able to rewrite the application in about 80 hours to run on SUSE LINUX Enterprise Server and the IBM zSeries mainframe.

“We could not have achieved such remarkable development speed without open source tools,” said Adams. “We now have a flexible, modular system that would have taken us three times as long to create with any other platform. SUSE LINUX is just a good solid operating system and everything we do with it is successful.”

ODOT now has unparalleled security to protect confidential personal information such as a citizen’s license number, address and date of birth, helping the organization comply with strict Privacy Act requirements. The new system has been running for more than six months without any downtime, a vast improvement in the overall manageability and efficiency of the system, freeing IT staff to now be deployed in other areas more effectively.

“Novell has extensive experience in the deployment of IT projects in the public sector,” said Ron Hovsepian, President, North America Operations for Novell. “The Oregon Department of Transportation has realized the benefits that can be achieved by government departments deploying Linux.”

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 http://www.novell.com.

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