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Companies: Linux a go, SCO or no

More than 80 percent of companies thinking about implementing Linux have not re-evaluated their plans in response to the SCO Group's Linux litigation, according to a recent survey.

Who's afraid of SCO Group?

Apparently just a small portion of companies thinking about implementing Linux, according to a recent survey of 100 chief information officers by investment firm Credit Suisse First Boston.

The survey, published Monday, found that 84 percent of CIOs with Linux installation plans had not re-evaluated their plans in response to the SCO litigation. Of the respondents, 73 percent had Linux implementation plans, according to the survey.

SCO Group, owner of several key copyrights related to the Unix operating system, has rattled the information technology world with its claims about the Linux operating system. In March, the company sued IBM, alleging Big Blue misappropriated SCO's Unix technology and built it into Linux. SCO also has sent letters to about 1,500 large corporations warning that they could be liable for using Linux.

A major question facing companies selling Linux products has been whether the litigation and threats will slow adoption of the operating system.

The C.S. First Boston study, conducted in September, found that Linux seems to have established a "beachhead" in the data center and "mission-critical" applications vital to an organization's operations. The study found that 29 percent of respondents had implemented Linux for mission-critical applications and 23 percent had installed it in the data center.

"Linux seems to have a beachhead in the midrange and high-end server markets," C.S. First Boston wrote. "As companies gain experience with Linux and developers and administrators increase their skill sets, we expect Linux deployment to increase with negative implications for Unix and probably Microsoft."