SAP seals SuSE Linux support agreement

SuSE Linux announced today that it entered into an agreement with SAP to offer improved support services for its shared customers.

Nuremberg, Germany-based SuSE Linux AG announced today that it has entered into an agreement with SAP to offer

improved support services for its corporate customers.

Companies using business application software from SAP and operating system software from SuSE will be able to contact either company for technical support under the new service agreement.

Customers will be offered one-stop support service options, ranging from assistance during regular office hours to 24-hour, seven-day-a-week service from engineers, according to a SuSE press release. Company engineers will provide assistance with SAP applications and issues surrounding the Linux source code.

In the past, SAP had directed SuSE customer calls for support directly to SuSE. The new agreement is expected to bring support services more quickly to SAP/SuSE customers.

SAP executives at the company's LinuxLab said recently that they are also expecting to announce a newly improved partnership with leading Linux provider Red Hat Inc. SAP and other leading enterprise software companies are rushing to line up behind Red Hat and SuSE as Linux gains momentum in the marketplace.

"We're going to be seeing similar kinds of relationships forming as time goes on, as all of the ISVs get behind one of them," said Ted Schadler, an analyst at Cambridge, Mass.-based Forrester Research. "This agreement is just another indication of SAP's commitment to the Linux operating system."

Schadler said SAP and SuSE have collaborated for years, and that SuSE software engineers work directly with SAP software programmers.

The deal between SAP and SuSE is non-exclusive, allowing SAP to make similar deals with other Linux vendors, including the members of UnitedLinux, a common Linux program launched by four companies: SuSE, Conectiva SA, Turbolinux Inc. and SCO Group.

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