Traditionally, businesses needed a large initial investment to build a data warehouse that satisfied the requirements of a growing enterprise and generated the desired return on investment (ROI). As long as the projected ROI covered the cost, not even the capital-intensive proprietary hardware systems or large SMP servers were considered significant. But recently, a tough economy has forced businesses to look for additional value from their technology investments. That's why today many IT and business managers are focusing on total cost of ownership (TCO) rather than solely on ROI when it comes to defining what makes a data warehouse project successful.

Linux clusters are emerging as the de facto choice for providing enterprise-level scalability, performance and availability for data warehousing solutions at a low cost.

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