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IBM continues to ramp up its efforts to bring Linux to SMBs and to migrate Windows users to Linux.

The company last week doubled to $10,000 the incentives for its partners that help small and midsize businesses implement Linux solutions.

IBM officials said such efforts ease implementations and lower startup costs. “Half of all Linux deployments are going into small and medium businesses,” said Scott Handy, vice president of Linux strategy and market development for IBM. “An insurmountable trend shows that Linux is inevitable in the SMB space.”

Also last week, IBM announced that it has signed four more security companies to its program for Windows NT-to-Linux migration, including Trend Micro, Secure Elements, Blade Fusion and Sourcefire.

The program seeks to draw users of Microsoft’s Windows NT, which will lose support Dec. 31, to Linux.