Very interesting article by Michael Vizard - Microsoft's SMB Dominance is under threat! http://www.extremerfid.com/article/Microsofts+SMB+Dominance+Is+Under+Threat/182141_1.aspx
"But a curious thing is starting to take shape in the SMB market as the loyalty to Microsoft among ISVs in this space becomes increasingly strained. The process that drove a wedge in that loyalty was Microsoft's decision to acquire a number of companies and begin aggressively marketing applications targeting the midmarket space. This naturally set ISVs on edge, with many of them shifting their stance from being pro to neutral about Microsoft to being neutral or against.
The reason solution providers need to pay attention to what's happening in the ISV community is that about one-third of all infrastructure is sold at the time of application deployment. Given that, the influence that ISV exerts on what infrastructure is chosen by the customer is immense. And what solution providers are going to see a lot more of is ISVs trying to push their customers toward Linux and open source.
.... ISVs will exercise enough clout with their customers to require more solution providers to have a deeper knowledge of all things open source. That may come with some additional cost for solution providers, but the days when a solution provider can focus on exclusively one platform in the SMB space appear to be coming to a close."
So, if you are a Microsoft ISV or solution provider or systems integrator or any other type of business partner, you got to check this out: http://www.ibm.com/lotus/abetterway !