Support is perhaps the single most important factor for businesses when they choose to implement a software or hardware solution. Regardless of the working environment, they want to know that if something bad happens, there's someone there to fix it. Ages past, a company called Linuxcare was there to help the increasing number of Linux-using businesses maintain their Linux servers. Unfortunately, the company went bust. The conglomerate of Linux distributions combined with a lack of a coherent overseer that coordinated everything resulted in an company that just couldn't work.
Though they fell by the wayside, they didn't disappear, and now Linuxcare has been reincarnated in the form of Levanta. Lead by Matt Mosman, the company is looking to offer a support system for businesses using Linux servers. The company's switched from maintenance mode to growth mode, with revenues for their current product in the past quarter exceeding all of last year. The services they offer are also fairly unique and attractive to businesses:
So Mosman & Co. wrapped the software into a piece of inexpensive hardware and took a risk on selling it as a cheap, easy-to-install system to help Linux administrators automate slow manual tasks. There's some overlap between what Levanta does and what Red Hat and Novell do, as the biggest distributors of Linux. But as an independent company not selling its own flavor of Linux, Levanta can manage Red Hat servers, Novell servers, and a variety of other lesser-known versions.
This can only be good for Linux server growth. If some companies pick up on something that demonstrates good support, likely many other companies will follow suit.