Lotus Foundations: Excellent for Small Offices

We were recently updated on Lotus Foundations. In a nutshell:

  • Designed to host prepackaged Linux (and later this year, prepackaged Windows) applications.
  • Aimed, initially, at Lotus collaboration offerings (Domino, Sametime, etc.) and vertical market applications.
  • Designed to be drop shipped to a remote location (SMB or branch office).
    • Unpacked and connected to the Internet by local personnel.
    • Flash memory-based Operating System (OS) performs:
      • Disk partitioning and formatting;
      • Copies itself to a partition on each disk; and
      • Calls home.
    • Completely configured, monitored, and managed remotely by a VAR, or corporate IT department.
  • Automated, incremental backup, to externally accessible, hot-swappable, disk-based, unit.
    • Local personnel must rotate backup units on a scheduled (daily, weekly, etc., as appropriate) basis.
  • Launched in January 2008.
    • Based on technology from IBM's Nitix acquisition.
  • Target market to be extended this year from SMBs to enterprise branch offices.
  • Support for prepackaged Windows applications also coming this year.
    • Prepackaging = preconfigured Windows Server OS + preconfigured Windows application in a VMware image.
    • VMware host support of clean/dirty block markers on VMware virtual disks (VDs),
      • To allow for incremental backup of Windows file system blocks by Linux host.


  • Software list prices: $299 base server. CALs including Domino, anti-spam and anti-virus, are $149 each. Software assurance is around 20%.
  • Hardware list prices: $2,409 for base system; 3,279 for high-end system with Intel X3330 2.66GHZ Quad Core Zeon processor, 500GB, 1TB backup drive.

... David Ferris and Nick Shelness

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