Here's the simple formula: For every dollar a customer spends on JBoss (the product), that same customer typically spends another $10 to $12 on related JBoss consulting and integration services, notes Mark Enzweiler, VP, global channel sales at Red Hat.
"JBoss middleware is like a central nervous system," asserts Enzweiler. It's so mission critical that customers are willing to pay Red Hat or the company's integration partners roughly $11.12 in consulting fees for every $1.00 they spend on JBoss itself, estimated Enzweiler.
In stark contrast, Enzweiler hasn't been able to make a strong business case for signing Linux desktop OEM agreements.
Sure, Canonical's Ubuntu Linux and Novell SuSE Linux (to some extent) earn headlines each time they win a new business deal. But during preliminary OEM negotiations, Enzweiler determined that PC companies "basically wanted it [desktop Linux] for free." At such low prices, Enzweiler worries that Linux distributors may wind up compromising their support models to gain market share on the desktop.
Still, The VAR Guy wonders: Should Red Hat find a bit more time for desktop Linux? Remember, Microsoft used its desktop position in the 1990s as a springboard onto the server. Canonical hopes to do the same with Ubuntu Linux.
But so far, Red Hat doesn't appear concerned. Indeed, Enzweiler continues to evangelize server Linux -- and JBoss middleware -- to Red Hat's integration partners. So far, simple math shows that Enzweiler's strategy is a good one.