Forrester paper on the ROI of migrating from Open Source to IBM WebSphere Application Server


Forrester Research has recently published a new paper titled “The Total Economic Impact To IBM WebSphere Application Server Migrating From An Open Source Environment”. You can download your free copy here.

This paper is based on the interviews with a federal agency in US who migrated their existing development, test, and production environment away from open source application server to WebSphere Application Server. Based on the interviews, Forrester has completed financial analysis and found that a representative organization based in part on the agency interviewed experienced the risk-adjusted ROI of 51% with the payback period within 24 months. According to this study, the main benefits experienced by the interviewed organization from replacing open source runtime with WebSphere Application Server were as follows:

  • Reduction in support costs.
  • IT operational savings from reduced support incidents.
  • End user operational savings due to higher application availability.
  • Cross platform IT development team savings.

Reading this study, I noticed that some of the comments I made in my earlier post “Which is more expensive – JBoss or WebSphere?” as well as Summa white paper comparing TCO of WAS v7 vs. JBoss EAP v5 are also confirmed in this study.

Back in 2010 Forrester interviewed commercial Fortune 100 company and published this paper: “Forrester Total Economic Impact study for WAS vs Open Source.” This was a particularly interesting customer since they had a very large and important application that was not working well on the Open Source application server and was saved by moving it to WAS.

Migrations always carry some risk and I am aware of customers moving from WAS to Open Source runtimes as well, so this is certainly a two way street. By the end of the day it is important to understand the experience of those who have done such moves and make an educated decision and be well informed about the risks and rewards of such migrations.

Categories: Migration

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1 reply


  1. Upcoming webcast – Forrester Research discusses its new TEI study on the benefits of moving from Open Source to WebSphere | Why WebSphere? Blog

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