LVM insurance company switches 10,000 systems to Ubuntu 10.04 LTS
German insurers LVM Versicherung are bringing Ubuntu to their desktops: all field staff and the majority of workplaces at the company's headquarters in Münster now use the Ubuntu Desktop 10.04.2 LTS operating system on their laptops and desktop computers, LVM divisional director Wim Bollen told The H's associates at heise Open.
The Linux operating system has had a long tradition on field staff computers. After using Linux from Scratch and Red Hat Linux, LVM started trials to implement Ubuntu, which was chosen for its strong focus on user requirements, as the future operating system for staff laptops and desktop computers in the company's remaining divisions in late 2009.
In mid-2010, Ubuntu Desktop 10.04 LTS was rolled out on field staff computers, and the company's office computers were migrated in the first quarter of 2011. Among other things, this was made possible by a centralised hardware procurement policy that avoided the need to migrate a large variety of makes and models. Ubuntu distributor Canonical helped with troubleshooting, for instance in terms of driver support.
The Network Manager required adjustments: for example, employees need a stable VPN connection that mustn't fail even when switching from Ethernet to 3G. This is because LVM uses standard open source software along with client programs that are written in Java and directly exchange data with the insurance company's servers.
Overall, about 7,000 Lenovo notebooks and desktop computers of field staff, and 3,000 clients at the company's headquarters, were migrated to Ubuntu Desktop 10.04.2 LTS. Several LVM servers also operate under Linux, but they use Red Hat Enterprise Linux.