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IBM, ISVs unveil 300 Linux and WebSphere apps for iSeries

IBM's ISV push is paying off for the iSeries. Big Blue announced 300 new Linux and WebSphere apps for the midrange platform.

Happy holidays. IBM will ring in the New Year with 300 new Linux and WebSphere apps that can be ported to the iSeries, including a Linux-based solution from the Plano, Texas-based S2 Systems, a provider of software used for processing electronic payment transactions.

The ability to run open source software on the iSeries is an attempt by IBM to expand the platform's appeal and specifically target Microsoft users. The move could also calm concerns from long-time iSeries users who accuse IBM of not supporting the platform with new, more modern applications.

For months, IBM has been courting ISVs to create Linux or WebSphere ports in order to expand the potential pool of software for the iSeries, said Charles King, research director, Sageza Group, a research firm based in Mountain View, Calif. This announcement makes the iSeries a much better value proposition, he said.

IBM announced in April the ISV Advantage initiative, a program designed to provide midmarket ISVs, including those serving the iSeries space, with technical and marketing support to help meet the specific needs of small and medium-sized business customers.

According to Joe Rueda, business unit executive for iSeries ISV sales, these offerings on the iSeries not only help customers modernize their environments, but contribute to the future success of iSeries by enabling the customers to run the critical applications they require.

Customers want to go to an environment that has lots of apps, and ISVs want to go for a platform with a broad user base, he said. "We're seeing momentum on both sides."

S2 Systems' OpeN/2 support for Linux on the iSeries provides customers with the ability to consolidate multiple workloads into an integrated Linux environment in order to extend OS/400 applications.

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