Which operating system?

One of the questions I inevitably ask when speaking to CIOs and IT directors about an application they are running is: “What operating system does it use?” No one ever comes back with the response: “Does it matter?”

Businesses do not really care what operating system they run, so long as it supports the applications they require. Most appreciate that Windows comes from Microsoft; Unix from one of the server makers. One requires certified hardware and signed device drivers; the other runs on a specific hardware platform. In spite of the technical differences between the two, scalability and price/performance benchmarks, they do more-or-less the same job. Both are proprietary; both lock you into an IT architecture. Assuming businesses run a mixed environment anyway, the choice of operating system really shouldn’t matter.

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What, no mention of Apple Xserve? Tut. ;-)

What's Apple?? Not sure about Xserve, but MacOS users seem to be the worst offenders of hyping their own OS imho

The XServe wasn't a product that Apple designed to market. They made it due to the fact they have a lots of data centres of their own (to drive their site, the QuickTime Movie Trailers hosting, Apple Store, iTunes Store, etc) and they didn't want to be purchasing a load of servers from a rival to operate them. They sold it simply because, having already created and built it for in-house use there was no reason not to, but the potential niche for a rack-mounted OS X box was modest enough that it wouldn't have been worth their while designing it just for sale.