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IBM to boost iSeries partnerships

IBM is bolstering support for developers of applications and tools for its server targeted at small businesses.

IBM on Friday announced a new program of support to developers of software and tools for its iSeries servers.

Under the eServer iSeries Initiative for Innovation program, the company will shell out $50,000 in incremental services to 2,500 third-party software vendors and developers to work on business applications for its mid-market servers. In addition, tool developers will get free access to IBM's experts in Rochester, Minn. and a discount of up to 70 percent on co-advertising in more than 220 industry magazines worldwide.

IBM, based in Armonk, N.Y., said it will expand the iSeries facilities in its Innovation Centers in the United Kingdom and the United States, as well as set up new centers in China, Japan, Italy, France and Australia.

IBM has been bringing in hardware and software changes to bring a speed boost and price cut in its iSeries lineup. The servers now use the same hardware as the more widely installed pSeries family. Also, the system has been able to run Linux since 2001 and can now run the AIX version of Unix from pSeries.

"We wanted to accelerate (our partners') ability to deliver critical innovation such as RFID, Web services, portals and personalization to iSeries customers around the globe," Mark Shearer, general manager of IBM eServer iSeries, said in a statement.