This is a guest post from Larry Dignan of TechRepublic’s sister site ZDNet. You can follow Larry on his ZDNet blog Between the Lines, or subscribe to the RSS feed.

Server sales continue to tank with worldwide server revenue falling 30.1 percent in the second quarter to $9.8 billion. That decline has set up a market share duel that IBM appears to be winning, according to IDC.

According to IDC server revenue fell for the fourth consecutive quarter to the lowest sales tally since the research firm began tracking it in 1996. Unit shipments also fell 30.4 percent in the second quarter compared to a year ago. First quarter server sales fell 26.5 percent.

Simply put, few enterprises are refreshing their servers. What do you do amid the carnage? Duke it out for market share. IDC reckons that companies will have to refresh their servers at some point, but it’s unclear when.

In the meantime, here are the standings that illustrate how IBM and Dell are gaining share:

Dell and IBM have ganged up on Sun, the weak link, to gain market share, and HP stayed flat.

Under the hood:

  • Windows Server revenue fell 27.7 percent in the second quarter, but Microsoft had 38.1 percent market share.
  • Linux revenue fell 28.9 percent in the second quarter to $1.3 billion. That sum is good for 13.8 percent market share, up from 13.5 percent a year ago.
  • Unix server sales fell 30.9 percent in the second quarter to $3.1 billion. IBM gained 7.4 percent of Unix server market share to 41.4 percent. Sun had 27.3 percent of the market followed by HP at 24.8 percent.