I’m curious what anyone who reads this blog thinks. My first reaction when someone mentions Ubuntu server is to grab the nearest trout and start slapping. Don’t get me wrong I like Ubuntu. It’s very nice on a workstation, and suitable for my wife, mother, aunt, etc …. But do you really think its good enough for prime time in the data center? According to a server-survey conducted by the Ubuntu marketing team almost 80% of users see Ubuntu as ready for mission critical use.

I was quite shocked when I first saw that. Then I dug a bit deeper. Turns out they announced surveys “variety of Ubuntu forums, websites and other channels”. They do note that “consequently, the results are focuses on Ubuntu users and not general Linux users”. I am not saying that I would _never_ run Ubuntu as a server. I just don’t think its proven itself yet. Perhaps in another LTS release or two I may consider it. I also know there is a chicken and egg paradox there. It of course won’t prove itself until people start putting it to the test.

I think this also brings up another interesting point. The survey noted that “95% of respondents considered hardware support as important to very important”. Included in the survey was a chart that listed Ubuntu users hardware preferences. Not surprisingly Tower/Desktop PC topped the list, but Dell servers, HP/Compaq x86 Servers, IBM x86 servers, and SUN x86_64 servers were also on the list. At the time of the report “Ubuntu Server Edition did not come pre-installed on machines from any major provider”. What happened to the desire for “Enterprise Support”?

I have long been greatly annoyed by “Enterprise Support”. More often than not it just gets in my way and to stay supported I have to do things in a less than optimal way. It would not hurt my feelings if the demand for “Enterprise Support” decreased and the demand for “knowledgeable individuals” increased. I would love to take the money spent on “Enterprise Support” and channel it back into training. Unfortunately I just don’t see that happening.

So what do you think? Do you think Ubuntu is ready for production? What does the lack of vendor support say about Ubuntu or the direction of “Enterprise Support” needs? Are you running Ubuntu in production (for anything serious, not your home server …)? Have any good or bad Ubuntu server stories to share?