IDC: Linux drives datacentre server shipments

Linux is growing its share of datacentre servers, according to IDC, although Windows is still the dominant platform

The latest market share data from IDC shows that Linux is fuelling a surge in demand for server hardware.

According to IDC's latest EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) Server Tracker, Linux was the only operating system to experience positive growth year on year, up 6.5% at $750m, or around 20.7% of total market sales. 

The first quarter of 2012 was the second time that Linux overtook Unix in market share since records began. The first time this happened was in the third quarter last year. 

Unix declined 27.6% on the back of weaker Risc system sales, with sales of $542.4m. Windows held 52% of the market, generating hardware spending of around $1.6bn, down 0.6% year on year. Of the main operating systems, only z/OS declined faster than Unix, by 39.3% to reach $201.9m.

Giorgio Nebuloni, senior research analyst, enterprise server group, IDC EMEA, noted that cloud providers were driving sales of density-optimised servers. 

“EMEA datacentre facilities are increasingly under pressure to deliver unparalleled power density on a per-rack and per-square-meter basis,” he said.

The IDC market data showed that x86 revenue reached $2.2bn, equivalent to 73% of the total market, a decline of 3.4% annually. This was the 13th consecutive quarter in which x86 sales surpassed non-x86 servers, as the market trend towards industry-standard servers consolidates. 

Epic (Itanium) servers experienced the sharpest fall in non-x86, down 46.5%, followed by Cisc and Risc systems, down 34.3% and 16.8% respectively. Risc revenue reached $451.8m, or 14.5% of the market, while mainframe sales reached $263.1m, or 8.4% of total EMEA sales.

Vendor 1Q12 server revenue 1Q11 server revenue 1Q12/1Q11 revenue growth
HP $1,193.27 $1,474.50 -19.1%
IBM $819.49 $997.02 -17.8%
Dell $436.56 $410.50 6.3%
Oracle $226.23 $241.18 -6.2%
Fujitsu $182.41 $196.88 -7.4%
Other $263.17 $220.72 19.2%
Total market $3,121.12 $3,540.81 -11.9%
Source: IDC's EMEA Quarterly Server Tracker, June 2012


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