The latest Gartner figures show that both server shipments and revenue increased in Q2 as Hewlett-Packard and IBM lost market share to Sun and Dell.
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Worldwide shipments totaled 1.6 million units, up 24.5% from Q2 2003, with every region of the world posting a revenue increase, according to Gartner.
Low-cost servers based on Linux or Windows continue to sell faster than their Unix counterparts, following a trend that has been evident for several quarters. Linux server shipments grew 61.6% and revenue from them was up 54.6%, Gartner said.
Servers based on Intel's Xeon processors still dominate the low-cost market, although AMD's Opteron processor has received a lot of attention in the past year. Both companies now ship processors based on the widely used x86 instruction set that have both 32-bit and 64-bit capabilities.
That market grew 2,183% compared to Q2 2003, when only IBM was shipping an Opteron server, Gartner said.
Revenue from 32-bit x86 servers grew 10%, while revenue from Unix servers fell 4%.
HP shipped 463,489 servers, to lead all suppliers in Q2. Its shipments increased by 22.7%, but Dell's grew faster, and HP lost a little ground to Dell. HP's server unit boost follows a disastrous second quarter in which revenue declined 5%.
IBM shipped 238,721 servers in the quarter, an increase of 18.5%, but lost some market share.
Sun shipped 90,487 servers, winning it the largest increase among all suppliers of 38.4%. It sold more of its Netra servers to the telecoms industry in the past quarter, and also won more business for its high-end Unix servers at financial customers than its competitors, Gartner said.
Fujitsu and Fujitsu Siemens shipped of 47,072 servers, an increase of 17.7%, Gartner said.
Alltogether server suppliers combined to rake in $11.5bn (£6.4bn) in revenue during the quarter, a 7.7% increase.
Tom Krazit writes for IDG News Service