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“Linux-Based Web Hosting Solutions Have Maximum Market Share"
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“Linux-Based Web Hosting Solutions Have Maximum Market Share"  
Linux solutions make up for about 60-70 per cent of the Indian market.   
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Thursday, June 21, 2012 Linux based Web hosting solutions are gradually taking the lion's share in the global market. Apart from being economical, they are considered more flexible and scalable compared to their proprietary counterparts. The market share of Linux based Web hosting solutions range between 20 to 40 per cent in 2009 but has now increased to about 60 per cent, globally. In the Indian market, Linux based Web hosting solutions seem to rule the roost. According to P Sridhar Reddy, chairman and managing director at CtrlS Datacenters Ltd, Linux solutions make up for about 60-70 per cent of the Indian market. EFYTimes.com spoke exclusively to Reddy about the penetration of Linus. Excerpts from the interview:

Linux based Web hosting solutions, Tier IV data centres, CtrlS, CtrlS Datacenters Ltd, P Sridhar Reddy, data centres in India, ecommerce-based sites, Automated Hosting, LAMP stack-based servers, Linux

What is the share of Linux in the server market? Why is it turning into a popular choice in the Web hosting domain?

Linux always has and will continue to enjoy the largest market share both globally and in India. The share of Linux-based Web hosting solutions is about 60-70 per cent in India. This kind of market share has been achieved because there are very usable control panels available for Web hosting, which allow the hosting clients to access the typical applications for mail, Web databases and for programming. The licensing costs of Linux-based Web hosting solutions are obviously low when compared to any proprietary solution, which makes them a cost-effective option. Moreover, the availability of operating systems that can be deployed instantly, without a licence, result in them being deployed at a much faster pace. I think Linux-based Web hosting solutions are considered more stable and reliable, and are able to fulfill the requirements of clients efficiently.

What are the reasons behind the increasing popularity of cloud-based hosting services?

One main reason for the popularity is instant deployment. Also, these solutions are highly scalable, which includes upgrades and downgrades. Of course, the pay-per-use model also helps because people like to pay only for what they use on an hourly model and can keep their cloud server in switched off mode when they don't need it. This means that clients have to pay for what they use only. This leads to a considerable cost saving. This means that clients have to worry only about their opex and not about the capex. The availability of freeware and open source software in the cloud space is another factor that accounts for this popularity. Organisations now have to come up with an hourly model for cloud services, as that is in demand.

How do Linux-based Web hosting solutions fare in India?

Linux-based Web hosting solutions have one of the largest markets in India. They are becoming increasingly popular among Indian companies primarily because of the cost factor. Yet another reason is the availability of hosting panels like the Parallels Plesk and Cpanel, and a lot of mail platforms are also built for Linux. In the initial days, mail was a major application that the hosting providers had been selling. The availability of the LAMP stack-based servers has made it easier for companies to deploy their applications faster. Indian service providers like to program in languages like MySQL, PHP, etc. So LAMP stack-based servers have been very popular in India from the very beginning.

Why are Linux-based Web hosting solutions considered scalable and flexible, compared to the proprietary options?

Linux-based Web hosting solutions have the advantage of being open source. Since they are developed by the community, the development is much faster as compared to the proprietary model. Whether it is the bug fixes, the security upgrades or releasing patches, the community is prompt and quick. Also, because it is a community-shared platform, a lot of innovation happens and one can see a lot of creativity. The platform ends up becoming more robust and scalable as opposed to the applications developed by a single company.

Do you also provide dedicated managed Linux servers?

Yes, we do provide both managed and unmanaged dedicated Linux servers. These are branded and brand new servers. We provide Linux-based servers on a variety of platforms. We have made about 127 images available for the dedicated platforms. We have a dedicated COE (Center of Excellence) for open Source operating system, Databases and Apps which supports these customers 24X7 along with continuous R&D.

What are the advantages of having your own Tier IV data centre?

A Tier IV data centre has N+N redundancy across power, back-up and cooling. This allows us to provide an uptime SLA of 99.995 per cent. The power is taken from two different sources and both are in Active+Active configuration, which makes the data centre fault-tolerant and eliminates the requirement of any scheduled downtime for maintenance, unlike in the case of Tier III or Tier II data centres. CtrlS is Asia's largest Tier IV data centre and the only certified one in India.

Do you have any special strategy or special offers for SMBs in India?

We have been targeting the SMB segment for the past two years, because there are no automated hosting ecommerce-based sites that are available in India for SMBs. The SMB segment prefers things that are based on a do-it-yourself kind of a model. Most of them like to go online and buy dedicated servers, virtual private servers or cloud-based services. None of the service portals currently available have instantly deployable or scalable solutions. SMB customers want instantly deployable solutions and want to pay only for their usage. So, we cater to these needs through our website ctrls.com, which is a completely automated e-commerce based website where the customers of Web hosting solutions can buy and deploy instantly. This site enables them to come online and just pay, using any payment method among the choices available. They can get that deployment quickly. They want them managed as well, because they do not have the kind of IT infrastructure and support teams that can do that. Keeping this in mind, we provide a 24X7 support team that helps them on all these applications. I would like to say that we are one of the most successful e-commerce websites in the cloud and dedicated servers space.

Diksha  P Gupta, EFYTIMES News Network

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