SUNScholar/DSpace/Why Ubuntu Server

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Back to Install Ubuntu - Step 1


In order to make the research outputs of Stellenbosch University available, the library decided develop an open access research repository service.

Most importantly the repository has to make the research available for future researchers as well and therefore the contents and the system used to store the contents must be sustainable into the far future, a future where Microsoft, Oracle and other proprietary system providers may not exist.

With this in mind as a selection criteria, DSpace on top of an Ubuntu server was used for the following reasoning:


  1. We cannot predict what technology will exist in the future.
  2. But we can be almost certain, that open systems based on open standards will have a better chance of surviving to the future.
  3. Since we are employing open systems based on open standards, we have to eliminate any proprietary systems or standards.
  4. DSpace is open source software, supported by a foundation and is based on open standards.
  5. DSpace is also very popular as a repository management system.
  6. Ubuntu is also supported by a foundation and is also one of the most popular linux distributions which are based on open source software.
  7. Ubuntu is committed to releasing a "long term support" (LTS) version of the distribution every two years.
  8. The method of Ubuntu LTS releases allows us to plan for upgrades and makes capacity planning of the repository more effective.
  9. In addition, Ubuntu is derived from Debian, the original linux distribution.
  10. Debian is very stable, and has a very large community supporting it.
  11. Most linux distributions are based on open Unix standards.
  12. The Microsoft server software and client access licences are extremely expensive.

So considering all of the above, DSpace on an Ubuntu server made logical sense to comply with most of BOAI, section 3.


Please Note:

  • It is not a good idea to use to use the latest LTS release of Ubuntu, if you do not have access to an expert Ubuntu linux system administrator.
    For example: If you install using Ubuntu 10.04 LTS, then wait until the second point release of the next LTS version before considering upgrading.
  • If you are considering using Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL), then remember Redhat is commercial and if they fail then so does your support. Whereas Ubuntu can be supported by Canonical commercially and freely by the Debian and Ubuntu linux community for a very long time. So, long term support for Ubuntu/Debian is much more sustainable. See:

Why NOT others