Infrastructure Strategies '06
The building blocks
Server operating systems and databases are the most popular
packaged software among Indian enterprises. With Linux slowly catching up, the
EPS market is likely to expand further. by Toms Mathew
Organisations continue to invest
in this category. 81 percent of organisations have invested in EPS in
years past, last year 52 percent took the plunge and for the current year
it's 44 percent
According to the IS survey, Enterprise Package Software (EPS) has been and
will continue to maintain a key position when it comes to the IT spending of
medium and large enterprises in the country. 44 percent of respondents
said that they will continue to invest in EPS in 2006-07. While 44 percent of
respondents across industry verticals evinced interest in EPS, the services
sector including healthcare, hospitality, logistics and ad agencies had the
largest share of EPS wannabes (71 percent) followed by government/PSU (56 percent)
and manufacturing (50 percent).
81 percent of organisations have invested in EPS in years past, last year
52 percent took the plunge and for the current year its 44 percent.
- Server operating systems are attracting investments
followed by databases.
- Organisations in the services vertical are investing
the maximum in server operating systems and databases.
- Linux has arrived with services and IT/ITeS
verticals being the early adopters.
- Reliability and low cost of acquisition are
the top two reasons for using Linux.
Linux is making inroads. The survey
reveals that 48 percent of organisations across verticals are using Linux
in some form or the other. Among the top users, services (71 percent)
takes the lead with IT/ITeS (62 percent) and government/PSU (53 ercent)
being other significant adopters
Server operating systems (93 percent) are the most popular software in this
category; databases (72 percent) come second. The use of server operating systems
is highest among BFSI and services. In terms of planned investment, services
again takes the lead with 57 percent planning to invest in it. Windows (89 percent)
continues to rule the roost with Linux (31 percent) coming second followed
by Unix (11 percent). The rationale behind Windows supremacy is its perceived
Linux is making inroads. The survey reveals that 48 percent of organisations
across verticals are using Linux in some form or the other. Among the top users,
services (71 percent) takes the lead with IT/ITeS (62 percent) and government/PSU
(53 percent) being other significant adopters. The reasons for preferring Linux
are its reliability as a platform (55 percent), low cost of acquisition (47
percent) and low TCO (23 percent).
Reasons for not using Linux are a preference for Windows
(63 percent) and lack of support (24 percent) and lack of IT staff with Linux
skills. Among the verticals that prefer Windows are government/PSU (86 percent),
FMCG/consumer durables (70 percent) and BFSI (63 percent).
On why tools such as knowledge management
have few takers- The implementation of knowledge, identity and
infrastructure management depends on the culture of an organisation. Knowledge
management is how an employee thinks and how you go about documenting his
thoughts and ideas. In knowledge management the rationale behind decision-making,
price-increases or decreases is not captured.
With connectivity options available easily, organisations
are investing in messaging servers. Three years back there werent
many options when it came to connecting locations. Today decisions can
be made online, its faster and the infrastructure is available.
Linux- Nothing comes for free. Managements
think that Linux is free and hence put pressure on the IT department to
use it, but they do not realise that one has to pay for the services.
An operating system should be chosen on its technical
qualities. Some of the advantages of Linux are that it is robust and stable,
but its use in verticals such as education and government would be more
It has its disadvantages too; support is still
an issue besides all the applications are not available on it.
Databases will grow
Relational databases are second on the priority list in EPS.
With organisations deploying applications such as CRM, ERP, SCM a database is
crucial. BFSI (79 percent) has the maximum penetration, followed by telecom
(76 percent) and manufacturing (75 percent). The survey also point out that
the overall database use is quite high (72 percent) with 17 percent planning
to invest in the current financial year.
Communication within the organisation is as important as is doing so with the
outer world. The IS survey shows that 64 percent of organisations across verticals
have invested in a messaging server. The top three verticals in terms of messaging
server deployment are BFSI (74), FMCG/consumer durables (73 percent) and chemical
and pharma (67 percent).
Microsoft Exchange (41 percent) continues to lead but faces
competition from Lotus Domino/Notes (30 percent). FMCG/consumer durables (59
percent) has the highest adoption with IT/ITeS and government/PSU having 50
percent each. Manufacturing (37 percent) and telecom sectors prefer Lotus Domino.
Government/PSU (67 percent) has the maximum users for Web/Proxy
with no intention of investing in the same for the current year. In the Web
server category, IIS (41 percent) leads followed by Apache (21 percent).
D K Mehrotra stresses on the need to identify
the core business of an organisation before making investments.
D K Mehrotra
To invest in server operating systems and databases
depends on the core business of the organisation. Ours is a financial
organisation and considering the kind of databases we have, our core business
revolves around these two pieces of software. I think identity security
and the others will only play a peripheral role for some time to come.
Presently, apart from databases, we dont have the
others, at least in the current years plan. We will definitely use
them if we see the need for it.
Right now, we are using Linux. We migrated from Unix
to Linux as the latter could endure our requirements. As an operating
system, Linux is sustainable. It is also cost effective, because of which
we can migrate our mission-critical business applications to the new system,
while our in-house software development centre still produces around 99
percent of our software.
We do not see the need to invest in other systems.
But we intend to give our global customers the best possible experience
and therefore, we are open to making changes.
The rest of the pack
Tools such as knowledge management, performance optimisation tools, infrastructure
management and identity management lag behind. Of those who have invested in
these, infrastructure management (28 percent) has the maximum users when compared
to performance optimisation tools (17 percent), knowledge management (15 percent)
and identity management (15 percent).
IT/ITeS (24 percent) seems to be keen on adopting knowledge management tools,
while FMCG/Consumer durables (33 percent) and IT/ITeS (24 percent) are into
performance optimisation. Infrastructure management has quite a few takers in
FMCG/Consumer durables (43 percent) and BFSI (34 percent). 26 percent of BFSI
plans to invest in infrastructure management tools during the current fiscal.
- Those who have invested in the basic EPS components
should look for advanced tools such as knowledge management and performance
- Linux on the server is a strong alternative
as application support in areas such as messaging and databases are
- EPS is crucial for applications, hence it needs
to be scalable.
With inputs from Rishiraj Verma and Vinita