Germans stick Linux on 10,000 PCs

While most of the world has been ignoring Linux on the desktop, it appears that the makers of Ubuntu have managed to score a lucrative deal with German insurance giant LVM Versicherungen.

Canonical, which makes Ubuntu, will convert 10,000 PCs to use Ubuntu Linux across the entire company.

Included in the project is the conversion of 3,000 desktop and laptop computers in LVM’s Muenster HQ with a further 7,000 in the company’s agencies around Germany.

At the moment the company’s core software is LAS, a Java-based claims-processing application which is backed by Lotus Notes, Adobe’s Reader and OpenOffice.

LVM has been using Ubuntu for some time, but converting the outfit’s install base to use the software is a coup. It appears that the company had been using Windows XP.

It is not a an easy environment for any desktop to work in either. The company uses a large pool of self-employed and mobile sales representatives that sell insurance and the LAS system is ‘always-on’.

Canonical’s VP of business development, Steve George said that many companies were waking up to the realisation that there is an alternative to an endless cycle of licence fees that can amount to millions of dollars.