In my previous “personal” projects, my client always keep asking me what’s linux distro that I use and recommended for SAP workstation. Before I answer that question, I always gave them some of SAPGUI requirements. Based on that requirements, even you can decide which linux distro is the best linux OS for SAPGUI.
Here some guidelines before choosing linux distros :
- Must be able to run SUN java environment because SAPGUI for Java was the only SAPGUI client available for Linux right now. There is no native SAPGUI for Linux. Not like Windows OS.
- Must have office suite applications such as OpenOffice.org, KOffice, etc.
- (Optional) Having remote desktop applications so that your SAP helpdesk or IT/EDP crew can help you figure out what happened if something bad is happening on you linux environment.
- (Optional) Having MP3 player, Movie Player, Chat application, etc…just kidding.
Based on this requirements, you can decide the best linux distro for your own. Another consideration before choosing your company official linux distro to use are :
- How long do your IT/EDP crew to prepare a single desktop PC until its ready to be used ? If your choosen linux distro had already shipped with SUN java, OpenOffice an all applications you need then you’ll ready to boot your client just in a few minutes. This is the reason why I am using Vector Linux 5.0 SOHO and Vector Linux 5.8 SOHO edition. I recommend them as SAPGUI-ready distro 😀
- Linux support and documentation. Soon or later, you’ll need help when installing or operating linux distro as SAPGUI workstation. Some of linux distro are well supported by big company such as Redhat, Novell, Xandros, Linspire, etc. Maybe one day you’ll need their support. For me, I prefer community based linux because I do not use complicated setting or configuration on my linux client. But, your bozz will decide this, right ?? Usually, well established company are still need legal support from another company support. You can get this support from your native or local company. (FYI, my private company, Ardhian Linux Shop are providing SAP support and also Linux PC and server support for Indonesia. Hope for my all over the world clients :D. Who knows ?? )
- Regular linux distro release. Computer programs always have bugs. So, you always need to update or –radically– upgrade your linux distro. Ubuntu is one of the best linux that give their promise to be regular release every 6 months. You can rely on that.
I use Ubuntu and Vector Linux for my office. Of course, you can also use another linux distro such as PC Linux OS, Linux Mint, Freespire, etc.
Happy migrating your “pirated” Windows version to Linux !