Commercial Linux Support Showdown
Can't Buy Me Love
The idea of fixed yearly support costs is an appealing one. Knowing exactly what your desktop and server support costs will be for the coming year makes it much simpler to create a budget. Purchase a three-year subscription and enjoy a 10 percent discount on the price. Imagine accurately planning a three-year budget -- that's the stuff of bean-counters' dreams!
You know you've spent your support dollars wisely when you hear a calm voice on the other end of your frantic support call say, "Thank you for calling (Vendor) support, I'm here to help." There's nothing quite like personalized support -- you'll experience no fumbles, no stumbles and no million questions about which operating system you have, which kernel you're running or why you picked this distribution over another. Your information pops up on the support person's screen and your incident enters the queue.
Now that you know why you want commercial vendor support, let's look at who delivers it and how much it costs. Please see the Support Pricing Matrix table at the end of this article for a cross-vendor comparison of support options. All of this information is also publicly available on the vendor web sites. Prices shown are "street prices" per physical machine and do not take volume or corporate discounts into account.