It's said that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Vyatta, an open-source competitor to Cisco and Juniper, has now taken of several recent steps toward commodifying the existing networking software market, including a deal with the New Mexico Court System.
The reason for choosing Vyatta over Cisco and Juniper? As described in a case study (PDF), Vyatta delivered great functionality at a super-low price, according to Sam Noble, senior network system administrator, New Mexico Courts:
The No. 1 reason we went with Vyatta was the flexibility and the peace of mind, knowing that if we came up with an issue, we'd have lots of avenues to address it from...We considered using Cisco 2600 routers or a Juniper firewall and VPN, but both of those fell short in some key areas.
I downloaded and tested the Vyatta software and found that it gave me all the features and functionality I needed, great performance and, hands down, the most flexible system around. After test-driving the software, I knew I had found the ideal solution in the Vyatta open networking appliance.
New Mexico Courts went into the evaluation assuming it could save money, but the most important thing that Noble relates is the key enabler in the process: a free and unobstructed download. As I've noted before, that download is the key to derisking IT investment, one that is getting CIOs' attention in a recessionary economy.
Why should a prospective customer take a risk on software when they can know well before they buy - if they buy at all - that the software will work? This is the new face of sales, and it's something that open source like Vyatta delivers.
Part of Vyatta's value proposition is all the cost savings and flexibility Noble identified that comes after the implementation and sale. But the initial value proposition is that organizations like New Mexico Courts System don't have to rely on a vendor to spoon-feed them value. With a free download, the enterprise owns the future of its IT.
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