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Microsoft Cheaper To Use Than Open Source Software, UK CIO Says

Unknown Lamer posted about 5 months ago | from the cliche-about-free-time dept.

United Kingdom 589

colinneagle (2544914) writes "Jos Creese, CIO of the Hampshire County Council, told Britain's 'Computing' publication that part of the reason is that most staff are already familiar with Microsoft products and that Microsoft has been flexible and more helpful. 'Microsoft has been flexible and helpful in the way we apply their products to improve the operation of our frontline services, and this helps to de-risk ongoing cost,' he told the publication. 'The point is that the true cost is in the total cost of ownership and exploitation, not just the license cost.' Creese went on to say he didn't have a particular bias about open source over Microsoft, but proprietary solutions from Microsoft or any other commercial software vendor 'need to justify themselves and to work doubly hard to have flexible business models to help us further our aims.'"

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Translation (5, Insightful)

Torp (199297) | about 5 months ago | (#46925569)

"Microsoft gave us a 98% discount in exchange for this article."

Re:Translation (5, Insightful)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about 5 months ago | (#46925615)

Yeah, I've never known MS to be flexible and helpful in the way he describes, so I'm guessing he's getting special treatment.

Re:Translation (5, Informative)

msobkow (48369) | about 5 months ago | (#46925631)

You're not negotiating for a big enough organization. All the vendors can be extremely helpful when the dollar signs in front of them are big enough.

Re:Translation (3, Insightful)

fustakrakich (1673220) | about 5 months ago | (#46925715)

Exactly. Has anyone ever seen a big depositor waiting in line at the bank?

Re:Translation (4, Insightful)

Casandro (751346) | about 5 months ago | (#46925721)

Well, but a week long Exchange semi-outage still costs money, no matter what your support level is. (Happened at a large German manufacturer of household appliances) Microsoft software just doesn't seem to be enterprise ready.

Re:Translation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925875)

FTFY: "Well, but a week long Exchange semi-outage still" gets you support from a barely trained script-monkey (not the type that writes scripts either) who can barely translate your question into English and has no ability to follow up on cases, so that the problems they fix every day still won't be addressed next time Microsoft wants you to pay for an "upgrade".

Not really (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925879)

Outages aren't really a measure to ascertain whether a software is enterprise ready. Lots of open source software also goes down and basically goes unreported perhaps because there is no support or it's not MS.
Git had gone down recently I think, more than once. There are companies who bet their businesses on MS and I don't think that is purely some sales gimmick by MS, it is more an informed decision by the responsible people in these companies whose livelihood depends on such decisions.

Re:Translation (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925881)

Microsoft software just doesn't seem to be enterprise ready.
That's what the London Stock Exchange said a few years ago. Nothing new though, the New York Stock Exchange and Chicago Mercantile Exchanges switched to Linux a few years earlier. Somehow the stock exchanges found the total cost of ownership for Open Source to be lower. But what do they know about money...

translation: (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925719)

commenter would rather make a conspiracy theory to explain away inconvenient evidence.

Possibly. (5, Insightful)

khasim (1285) | about 5 months ago | (#46925817)

"Microsoft gave us a 98% discount in exchange for this article."

Possibly. But there's enough weasel-room to reach his claims without that.

1. Lock-in: If his systems are already running MS software (which they probably are) is the cost of data migration counted against MS or is it counted against any alternative?

2. Hiring/Training: Is his office paying for training and certification OR is his office REQUIRING that anyone applying ALREADY have certification.

3. Discounts: Once you have 1 & 2, is Microsoft offering discounts just big enough to come in under the cost of migration?

True Costs (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925575)

'The point is that the true cost is in the total cost of ownership and exploitation, not just the license cost.'

Yeah, exploitation IS a cost. That's why I don't use Windows.

Re:True Costs (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925713)

>Yeah, exploitation IS a cost. That's why I don't use Windows.

Because all of the past huge exploited websites have been running Windows (protip: they've all been linux). Keep your head in the sand freetard.

XP Patch (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925751)

Is that why Microsoft just released an XP patch after it had ended support, because Linux had a bug?

Re:XP Patch (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925841)

You host web sites on Windows XP?

Re: True Costs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925769)

Actually I just listened to a talk today about UCSD exploit that started with a pass the hash attack. It took them close to a year to get rid of it. The main culprit MS windows.

Re: True Costs (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925785)

Actually I just listened to a talk about a security incident at UCSD, and it took them nearly a year to get out of it. The exploit was the pass the hash attack and the culprit MS Windows.

Re:True Costs (2, Interesting)

khb (266593) | about 5 months ago | (#46925809)

Perhaps the language from "across the pond" is hard for some US readers to parse. "Exploitation" meaning "use effectively" ... without knowing more about what this bloke's department(s) are tasked to do, it is hard to call him to task for his choice.

I would not be surprised if Macintoshes were even a better match for his user base.

I cannot seem to find it, but I recently ran across a bizarre claim that the average office worker's time is dominated by outlook (duh) but that Microsoft Word was number two at a paltry few minutes per day, and Powerpoint even less than that. Quite possibly true, and while that does tee up the question for why they need Microsoft products at all (since casual users needs can be met by a wide variety of FOSS projects) it would explain why retraining is *so* difficult. For people who live and breathe computing, learning a new platform isn't hard and is even "fun". For people who really only need to tinker with a few characters in documents that pass through their hands for a few minutes per day ... virtually ANY change is highly disruptive.

Re:True Costs (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925943)

"virtually ANY change is highly disruptive"... you mean like replacing heirarchical menus with a dog's breakfast ribbon?

Re:True Costs (0, Redundant)

Vlado (817879) | about 5 months ago | (#46926023)

One of the main reasons (or THE main reason) for why MS is still leading in the end-user environment is the Office.

Even though it may be hated by a lot of people for any number of reasons it is the standard. Why? Because FOSS simply is not compatible enough with it. If it's because of the fact that MS uses proprietary formats or because FOSS solutions could not be bothered to be compatible enough does not matter at the end of the day. If I can not use Libre Office or Open Office (or anything else) to edit Word-generated documents and return them without formatting disasters, I cannot use anything else than MS Office products.
End of story.

You may argue that others should switch to FOSS as well. Well, until they do, my livelihood depends on whether or not they will accept my products (documetns, presentations, spreadsheets,...). And if they don't then I simply don't have the alternative.

Re:True Costs (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925989)

hahaha no one has a response to this, because its so true it hurts them too much.

Discrimination is swell (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925599)

I love the fact that proprietary solutions have to "work doubly hard", making people who sell the products they create second class citizens by default.

Freedom, baby. Free as in .. what?

With experience of their networks (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925605)

Why would you listen to this idiot? Seriously I have seen the mess they run, no wisdom in this article.

not about cost in my oppinion (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925611)

I know the whole argument is centered around cost but it's not the point in my opinion. I use linux at our company because it's more catered to our needs and has many more advantages than price. I'm happy for Microsoft's OS to be the bottom of the barrel system.

Re:not about cost in my oppinion (5, Informative)

sjames (1099) | about 5 months ago | (#46925789)

It says cost, but the whole of TFAs boil down to MS is big and you can't depend on small vendors just because. So, ignoring Red Hat (reason not given) and IBM (reason not given), there are no large vendors of Linux. QED(ish, sorta).

Re:not about cost in my oppinion (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925941)

The irony is that RedHat has its UK HQ in his County (Farnborough) and IBM has a big R&D Site (hursley) just a few miles from his office.

And as a resident of Hampshire, I have to say that the County Council are a bunch of [redacted]. This guy is a perfect example of why they are cluless idiots with no real understanding of the real world.
It might be nice to have the chance to vote him out of office in a couple of weeks but his position is not one of those up for election. Sometimes the US way of electiong everyone including the Dog Catcher has its merits.

Recruiting policy (5, Insightful)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | about 5 months ago | (#46925633)

most staff are already familiar with Microsoft products

So the guy hires Microsoft compliant engineers and surprisingly they're most efficient on MS products. What isn't said is that probably that guy himself has always been a Windows user, and thus he prefers to hire windowsians. And there... I am not surprised. How would you feel hiring Linux people when yourself you don't have a clue about what it does and how it works. The thing is, Linux engineers would have no problem learning Windows stuff, while the opposite is more seldom. Hiring engineers interested in open source, Linux, openness in general would be more profitable for the company in the longer term, though.

Re:Recruiting policy (4, Interesting)

_Shad0w_ (127912) | about 5 months ago | (#46925661)

He's the CIO for a county council, when he says "staff" he means office staff and he's talking about Microsoft Office and Microsoft Windows for the desktop. His entire IT department probably fits in one fairly small room. I'm frankly impressed they haven't just outsourced the whole of their IT management; it's how councils here usually seem to work. Come to think of it's it's quite possible they have and he's actually the only person who works for the council directly.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

AHuxley (892839) | about 5 months ago | (#46925839)

"haven't just outsourced the whole of their IT management;"
That can depend on the security and police clearance. A lot more eyes are needed to track local issues on web 2.0 and social media at a town/city level.

Re:Recruiting policy (2, Insightful)

VortexCortex (1117377) | about 5 months ago | (#46925669)

Not to mention with Open Source there's no such thing as Win XP's end of life, and subsequent shift to the "buy updates for the bugs we already sold you" model.

The FLOSS model monetizes work on the software too. Only difference is that you only pay a FLOSS dev once for their work, instead of multiple times. Imagine if a mechanic adopted the proprietary software model.

Each person who drove the car would have to pay up for all the fixes done. To monetize the work done once multiple times he'd just put a coin slot where the ignition switch used to be.

Re:Recruiting policy (5, Insightful)

msobkow (48369) | about 5 months ago | (#46925697)

No, instead you have the end of support for even LTS releases, and then you're hooped if the upgrade doesn't work.

Open source is definitely not superior to Windows in that regard.

I have yet to work for a company big enough to be rolling their own updates and patches, even though anyone could, in theory, do so.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

TClevenger (252206) | about 5 months ago | (#46925767)

No, instead you have the end of support for even LTS releases, and then you're hooped if the upgrade doesn't work.

As opposed to Windows 8 where upgrading isn't even an option?

Re:Recruiting policy (2)

sjames (1099) | about 5 months ago | (#46925795)

How about small enough then? For a while, I maintained Debian 'Woody-Potato' for a 10 person shop.

Re:Recruiting policy (1, Insightful)

colinrichardday (768814) | about 5 months ago | (#46925803)

Yeah, because Ubuntu is the only company that can support Raring Ringtail. Nobody else could possibly read the source.

Re:Recruiting policy (3, Interesting)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#46925827)

I don't know, there's a guy here on Slashdot who still supports software built on Motif, without any problem. That's the equivalent of being built on Mac Classic. And it will continue to work for the foreseeable future.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925923)

We're on our 2nd LTS upgrade where I work. It took us three weeks. No one noticed fuck all nothing.

The last Windows upgrade I was a part of took six months. Why? We had to fight an uphill battle because of legacy shit wouldn't work on the new Windows thanks to MS deprecating features it relied on.

Windows is DEFINITELY not superior to open source in that regard.

I have yet to work at or talk to folks that work IN a Windows environment where they haven't dealt with the same shit.

Re:Recruiting policy (2)

cmurf (2833651) | about 5 months ago | (#46925985)

Why doesn't the upgrade work? Oh you mean Vista. That's a really good point because that a huge part of the XP problem, is that people were scared shitless into not upgrading, so the fixation on XP was much stronger than it otherwise would have been. And now the upgrades to Windows 7 and Windows 8 are even more challenging for those XP users because it's such a huge change.

If you mean 5 years of Ubuntu LTS support isn't long enough, I think you can pay for longer LTS support from Canonical, and if not the Red Hat has a 10 year support program with feature enhancements, with an option for 3 more years of extended support. That's a long time. The hardware won't last that long.

Re:Recruiting policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46926021)

I've been using linux for 8+ years, I usually don't format my disks, and simply upgrade from release to release. And you know what? I've had few problems with upgrades (although some were serious, like a botched grub or some problematic video driver), that I ended fixing "myself" (report the bug, wait for a patch or a newer package) without having to reinstall the OS... because, being open source software, you can actually help to resolve the problem, by reporting the bug to your distro, by talking directly to the devs, etc. and they will be happy to fix them in a matter of hours. I even move my whole operative system from machine to machine without any problems.
You are too accustomed to the windows way of doing things, and you don't really know how to use linux.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about 5 months ago | (#46925763)

Imagine if a mechanic adopted the proprietary software model.

Each person who drove the car would have to pay up for all the fixes done.

No they wouldn't, just like each person who uses a computer doesn't have to pay for the operating system on it.

Re:Recruiting policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925753)

What isn't said is that probably that guy himself has always been a Windows user

Or equally likely is that it is not said because your inference isnt true. Given that Microsoft dominates the market I would assume most people are familiar with Microsoft products, even those that may be more (or less) familiar with competing products like Libre/Open Office or the iWork suite.

and thus he prefers to hire windowsians.

Does not follow, in fact there really is no such thing except in the "us and them" perception of the world. Most people are quite happy to translate their personal computing tasks across applications and platforms from Windows to OS X to Android to iOS to ChromeOS and various Linux desktop distributions, very few people these days restrict themselves only to Windows.

How would you feel hiring Linux people when yourself you don't have a clue about what it does and how it works.

Hiring people to do the stuff you dont understand or want to understand is one of the very reasons you hire people.

The thing is, Linux engineers would have no problem learning Windows stuff, while the opposite is more seldom.

Have you not seen the vitriol on Linux boards, even on this website from Linux diehards against Windows? I think perhaps you need to take your head out of the sand.

Hiring engineers interested in open source, Linux, openness in general would be more profitable for the company in the longer term, though.

Again, does not follow. Just because the company uses Microsoft doesn't mean it has hired engineers that are not interested in open source just like a company that uses Linux is not necessarily interested in open source. Microsoft stuff can inter-operate with open source and vice versa.

Re: Recruiting policy (1, Troll)

Tom Barders (3642919) | about 5 months ago | (#46925865)

Try opening a Linux file system with any version of Windows. OK, that didn't work. How about this one, write a document in MS Office, save it in an open format such as .odt. Still nothing? Hmm. I can read Windows file systems, write to a .doc file, even install some Windows applications on my Linux box. If you prefer Windows, good for you. On this one though, your facts are backwards.

Re: Recruiting policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925905)

Try opening a Linux file system with any version of Windows.

My linux file systems are on my linux machines which I access over the network, works fine. There are also drivers [fs-driver.org] for accessing ext file systems on Windows if you want to plug the drive in directly.

How about this one, write a document in MS Office, save it in an open format such as .odt.

Why? Just send it as a word doc or a pdf or upload it to gdocs.

I can read Windows file systems, write to a .doc file, even install some Windows applications on my Linux box. If you prefer Windows, good for you. On this one though, your facts are backwards.

I can read Linux file systems [blogspot.com.es] , write to .odt (if for some reason i wanted to, using LibreOffice [libreoffice.org] ) on my Windows box so my facts are perfectly valid, you are just uneducated on the subject.

Re: Recruiting policy (1)

bruce_the_loon (856617) | about 5 months ago | (#46926015)

Word 2013 does open and save ODT files.

Re:Recruiting policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925761)

The thing is, Linux engineers would have no problem learning Windows stuff, while the opposite is more seldom.

"no problem" might be a bit optimistic. I've never known a Linux sysadmin that passed up an opportunity to go on lengthy rants about the various real and perceived virtues of Linux and open-source software.

Re: Recruiting policy (1)

Tom Barders (3642919) | about 5 months ago | (#46925873)

The post didn't say the Linux admin would like using Windows, just that he'd have no trouble learning it.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

AudioEfex (637163) | about 5 months ago | (#46925779)

That would be great if Linux IT professionals existed in any number to make it useful. Can you find one? Or even a few? Yeah, but it's not sustainable. Most engineers with a pedigree required for that kind of work are not going to be in nearly the abundance of those trained in Windows. That's the entire point - it would cost a lot more to headhunt and find those with the specific skills needed for such, when you can throw a Wiffle ball and find a half dozen qualified Windows IT professionals. And when they leave, you have to start again - that's the sustainability issue.

Re:Recruiting policy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925833)

That's exactly right. I have seen many posts on this site about how Linux admins are paid more than their Windows counterparts so naturally that means that the administrative cost contribution to the TCO is higher for Linux than Windows.

Also it is great that I can develop on open source myself but do I employ developers to build new features or do I document what I need and contract a company to do development or if I use proprietary software the development is done by the vendor who spreads the cost over all their clients. I *may* contribute to the cost of things I dont need and others may contribute to the cost of what I need even though they dont need it directly and if there is something that I really need that isnt being worked on but I really need that I am willing to pay to have independently developed I can *usually* do it even with proprietary applications through the exposed APIs. In all they are about the same so I will favor the incumbent until there is compelling reason to change.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

cmurf (2833651) | about 5 months ago | (#46925891)

It's hardly any different than the mainframe days when PC's were first appearing on the market. Who would buy a PC? No one can support it in the business environment! Fast forward to 2011 and you have a bunch of pay outs by the big mainframe support companies to get their mainframe specialists to retire early.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

ruir (2709173) | about 5 months ago | (#46925907)

Lets face it, it is probably what he uses, all he knows, and all he wants to use. However from there to it is cheaper, it is a long stretch.

Re:Recruiting policy (1)

cmurf (2833651) | about 5 months ago | (#46925959)

More like less expensive overall for the Hampshire County, rather than more profitable. I wonder what the 50 year archiving plan for Word, Excel and Powerpoint looks like for a government entity. And funny how email is already open source the way it flows on the Internet among MTAs but then as soon as it gets to a Microsoft Exchange server all of that data is now proprietary. Now the county is encouraged to use proprietary solutions to archive it and also index it for searches. All of this exact same software used the same way all over the world by all of these city, county, state, federal governments and yet instead of sharing the same code base that they all own collectively, no they each pay billions in licensing fees and SLAs to support closed solutions that they effectively rent.

Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925999)

The thing is, Linux engineers would have no problem learning Windows stuff, while the opposite is more seldom.

Oh please. Like half of the "linux engineers" I know flat out refuse to even touch windows. Hence they can't use it. Yes, the same applies on the windows side. Hire people who don't give a crap about operating systems, they will happily learn anything. Don't hire people who are interested in open source, or people who are interested in avoiding open source. Hire smart people who a capable of learning, and who don't have any ridiculous preference for open or closed source, and you can always use the best solution, not the one some linux (or windows, or any other) zealot insists on.

Linux is not hard to learn, neither is windows. Things work a bit differently, but not that much. The end result is usually the same. The underlaying hardware is often the same. It's a piece of software that is basically only used to start other pieces of software.

Familiarity (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925643)

The real problem is familiarity.
Users use MS at school and they use it at home as well.
And that's what they expect to work with when they start working for a company.

Same thing why XP just won't die.
Change needs to be subtle and gradual for most people to accept.

Re: Familiarity (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925799)

Users are not the problem. We have plenty of switch stories where users learn quickly.

Re: Familiarity (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about 5 months ago | (#46925965)

Users are not the problem. We have plenty of switch stories where users learn quickly.

Right, but users will adapt when there is a reason to do so. Look at how users adapted to the smartphone concept as we now know it when the iPhone was released, because it was a compelling and disruptive concept, people moved from the existing smartphone concepts to Android/iOS devices because they were significantly more appealing to the end user and provided a better user experience. The desktop Linux distros and free office suites suffer from a problem of not being disruptive in their respective markets and instead argue back and forth over the numbers in Total Cost of Ownership calculations...how compelling!

depends on your application. (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925649)

Centralized user login, and two-factor authentication, you're pretty much going to be stuck with either Red Hat Directory Server, or MS Active Directory server. RHDS is going to run you about $15,000. The same MS AD install will be significantly less. This is only one example. I would say that things like Sharepoint and Exchange are pretty outrageously priced. But if you keep it simple, MS can be fairly cost-effective.

On the other hand - the logistics of managing Windows licenses is pretty insane, compared to open source system deployments.

Mathematics (1)

johnsie (1158363) | about 5 months ago | (#46925651)

The cost of a Windows and Office license is quite high. Doing a few Google searches to find out how to use Linux & Open Office is alot cheaper than that. Yes, there are some cases where a user will need special apps that aren't free, but most desk jockeys spend most of thier time in Word, Excel and faecesbook. Windows isn't necessary in most cases.

Re:Mathematics (5, Insightful)

guacamole (24270) | about 5 months ago | (#46925679)

The cost of a Windows and Office license is quite high.

Just as many others, you haven't gotten yet the main point of the article. The cost of the software license is often a relatively small part of the cost of using software. Training the users is also part of these costs.

And by the way, the effective cost of Windows and Office licenses to businesses, government, and universities is much lower than the listed MSRP. When I worked in IT, the license prices was the last thing that worried us. The guy who did installations and setup probably charged more than what the software actually cost to buy.

Re:Mathematics (1)

Billly Gates (198444) | about 5 months ago | (#46925773)

Yeah AD with 25 inherited GPOs and legacy IE crap was more expensive than desktop apps just to give these horrible sites to run. I am not talking about IE 6 era sites even.

Complexity is a killer.

However without a stable ABI and API I can not say Linux is better either. Drivers break way too much as a result of the extreme ideology of forcing opensource and killing blobs. This makes NVidia only support later kernels or ignore older hardare and screw users.

Re: Mathematics (1)

Tom Barders (3642919) | about 5 months ago | (#46925889)

If you're using the nvidia drivers in an enterprise setting, I really hope you're doing graphics intensive work. If not, nouveau drivers work perfectly fine and support older hardware.

Re:Mathematics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925931)

The problem is your buying the wrong hardware. It's no wonder it isn't working. If you buy a Mac why would you buy MS Windows-only hardware? It makes no sense. It's the biggest failure to understand free software I see among GNU/Linux users. Those non-free components cause just as much headache on Microsoft Windows. They hold back adoption of new operating systems, software, an efficiencies. There are countries which have actually deployed GNU/Linux on the desktop in massive numbers and not run into near the problems spouted by these guys (and really the FUD Microsoft is spreading via fake TCO studies) .

It's not just the licensing that is the problem. Microsoft hasn't maintained a consistent user interface either. And if there is any argument that GNU/Linux is harder to adopt then the next version of Microsoft Windows I'm going argue that Microsoft Windows and it's line up of software is significantly harder to adopt than any version of desktop GNU/Linux.

Re:Mathematics (0, Troll)

AudioEfex (637163) | about 5 months ago | (#46925835)

Oh, don't go using logic here when it comes to open source vs. Windows with this crowd. If you listen to some folks here, even your Grandma should be using Linux.

There is a good reason that Linux has what, a 2% install base? It's because to start you have to "pick" a distro, to begin with. Windows is Windows. There may be varying grades of the same product, but it's all...Windows. It all seems so simple and straight-forward to the "open source or die" crowd - hey, if one doesn't work for you, try another - and they completely miss the point that it's the very issue, to begin with.

Of course, it goes far beyond that - compatibility with devices, user friendliness, ability to get support (I guess Grandma can join the local Senior's Linux User Group?). When it comes to business, those concerns multiply - the fact that there are so far fewer Linux IT professionals than Windows IT professionals exist. And because Linux is inherently so customizable and requires so much tinkering, you lose the wrong employee and you have to bring someone new in, it may be a nearly impossible task for them to get up to speed on what already exists, much less fix issues, unless the employee that has gone has extensively documented what has been done before.

It's not like Linux is the little engine that could, just chugging along waiting for everyone to discover it. It's not a diamond in the rough. It is the rough. I certainly have a lot of issues with Windows, but for the vast majority of users and businesses it just works - and that's for very good reasons. As much as we criticize everything being run by MS, that's also why it works - it has one governing body, unlike Linux, where you are basically out there in the wilderness when it comes to getting support.

At this point, even after so long, it's a niche - and even the tiny gains it has here and there for certain applications is never going change that - and it's going to remain a niche, for folks who like to tinker. Most people use computers as a tool, and don't want to spend just as much tinkering with the tool as just using it. All Linux would change for the majority of users in a practical sense is less compatibility and more headaches. I get the principle of open-source software, and it's noble - but ask anyone, nobility really doesn't win in the end, most of the time - it's great for folks that want to use it, but to expect the rest of the world to do so is simply a fantasy because for how most folks use a computer, it's more trouble than it's worth.

Re:Mathematics (1)

cmurf (2833651) | about 5 months ago | (#46925877)

It really depends on the software. Windows itself, negligible. Office, not much more. Specific software for an industry though, easily it's the salary for two or more engineers that could have been hired to work on the open source equivalent for your industry. They can make the overall code base better, thereby increasing the viability for everyone, and they can also add specific features just for your company. The various Service Level Agreements the IT department has, to support things they don't know enough about, are also expensive. And there isn't just one SLA. Even governments have SLA with NetApp for something basic like storage, which is rather ridiculous they don't have such on-going specialized need available in-house.

The cost of archiving if you're a government is probably significant also. I think it's malfeasance for governments to use proprietary document formats for anything. The vast majority of their internal documents, which are not public facing, are in proprietary Word, Excel, and Powerpoint formats. Anyone who wants to read them must have that software. How is this going to be read in 10 years? Government archivists are probably printing this shit out, medium term archiving the paper, and long term if deemed important enough it probably still goes on f'n microfische because asshats like this CIO insist on using software that stores data in proprietary formats.

The real issue isn't cost of licensing. It's cost of freedom to access your data at any time in the future, and do whatever you want with the software. You own your copy of open source software. You don't own Microsoft Office. It's licensed. And for Office 365, it's not perpetual. If you stop paying, you lose access.

Re:Mathematics (1)

vux984 (928602) | about 5 months ago | (#46926017)

It really depends on the software. Windows itself, negligible.

Yeah, provided you are buying PCs with it installed OEM, and you time your migration to the hardware refresh cycle its not even something to think about.

Office, not much more.

See... I find Office VLAs stupidly expensive for what it is: Word/Excel/Powerpoint/Outlook; Software Assurance is bonkers on top of that, and I hate dealing with VARs instead of directly with MS (or just doing it via the bloody website) on top of that. And now Office 365... I HATE subscription access.

Re:Mathematics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925957)

The cost to train users is overblown, IMO. We're an all Mac shop of 150 workers. Customer service and office types make up the bulk of our staff (100ish alone). The rest is technical staff. I knew fuck all about Mac desktop computing and had little issue getting into it. Granted I'm a nerd that will dive in. But over half the staff is predictably more experienced with Windows and we've had zero folks that are fed up with or loath Mac OS X. They just learn how to do feature X that they need and move on.

It's something I've actually discussed with other folks that have switched to Linux or Mac in their offices of the same size. It was bumpy at first perhaps, but it didn't seem to nosedive productivity. Folks kept on iterating and producing.

That training costs and loss of productivity are that bad seems more like a myth and a scare tactic.

Re: Mathematics (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925975)

Do you mean costs like teaching XP users how to use Windows 8?

You could install Linux boxes and just run Windows in a VM with some reservation logic so that the number of license seats isn't over reserved. No training needed, less licenses needed as not everyone would need to run Windows.

The training costs... How big do you think they are? Hint: they are one-time costs and negligible to the TCO involving upgrades and new computers required by the upgrades, the IT guy to patch the systems all the time.

The article is just a rehash of the old "get the facts" garbage from Microsoft.

Microsoft is slowly dying out and will be irrelevant in 5 years.

Windows Linux for small business (-1, Flamebait)

TheMiddleRoad (1153113) | about 5 months ago | (#46925685)

First time I installed Linux was about 15 years ago. Last time I installed Linux on a machine was 5 months ago. It never lasts. Every Linux UI I have ever used is behind Windows XP and even Windows 2K. Yes, there are some with pretty graphics but from updates to software names to installation, Linux is just a pain in the ass to use. If all I did was browse the web, it would be fine. However, I need Word. Word, not Libre Office (which is about as good as AppleWorks). So what? I'm going to install WINE? I don't think I have the patience for all the hoops just to avoid shelling out a hundred bucks. Or a few hundred for the Apple tax.

Right now, I have one machine not working. It runs Nas4Free. Yay open source!

Re:Windows Linux for small business (1)

markdavis (642305) | about 5 months ago | (#46925811)

How the above post could possibly be modded up for any metric is beyond me.

Re:Windows Linux for small business (1)

lsllll (830002) | about 5 months ago | (#46925819)

Seriously? I admit there are some thing that are just easier done in Windows than Linux, like my Galaxy S3's photo's being transferred to my PC. I don't evern recall not being able to open a MS Word document in Libre Office, no matter what the version of MS Word the document was saved in was. I also do not agree that the UI on Linux is behind Win XP, let alone 2K. I use XFCE on all my Linux boxes and have never had a problem doing anything graphically, although I'm more of a command guy to begin with. Both my daughters have been using Linux on notebooks (yes, notebooks, no issues with wireless or anything) for a very long time (4-5 years). The only time they had issues was when they used to save presentations when they were in high school (a few years ago) and had to make things work in Powerpoint.

At the end, it's not the few hundred bucks you're saving. It's rising against tyranny when it comes to the PC O/S. I hated buying Dell notebooks and having to pay for Windows. Even though those copies of Windows were already paid for, I elected for my daughters to use Linux on the same notebooks. I always thought of it as using a different language at home. They'd know Linux, but they'd learn Windows through their friends anyway and at the end would know both, which they do.

The ONLY thing Linux couldn't do well was gaming. One of my daughters wasn't into gaming at all. For the other one, she had a desktop that ran Windows so that she could play games, knowing that I would never help her with a Windows problem if she strayed and started to use the Windows machine as her main machine. She never did. She confined it to gaming, and I was happy, because I knew if she used it as her main machine she'd end up with tons of malware. She got the best of both worlds.

Re:Windows Linux for small business (1)

TheMiddleRoad (1153113) | about 5 months ago | (#46926033)

Tyranny? Try iOS or Android. They constantly track everything I do. It all gets reported back to Google. There's a lot more control with a Windows box than there is in Android. Hell, you can't even use the Android command line to control the DNS settings for 3g and 4g. I have to use an app, and it has to constantly redo the DNS settings. No, Windows isn't the tyranny.

I'm sure if I were a lover of the command line, I could be happy with Linux. However, I think the command line is a royal pain in the ass. Always have felt that way. Linux designers are all command line guys. There's no adult in the room to tell them to build the GUI so well that the command line is unnecessary.

As for gaming, that's a market issue. I cannot blame the OS for that.

Re:Windows Linux for small business (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925893)

First time I installed Linux was about 15 years ago. Last time I installed Linux on a machine was 5 months ago. It never lasts.

Sorry to hear that, but then I have the same feeling. Using Windows for any length of time in any serious way is pretty torturous. Windows 7's dock/grouping is an inane joke at best. File copying is a mess--mostly due to a combination of hidden copy dialogs and the way in which they lock one or the other underlying Explorer window. Trying to actually get things organized in the Start Menu is closer to a bad game, of which I *still* don't get the logic of trying to organize it all with the intermix of system wide vs user vs default. *shrug*

Every Linux UI I have ever used is behind Windows XP and even Windows 2K.

*cough*IceWM*cough* Seriously, Windows 8 is worth than Windows 7 is worse than Windows XP is worse than Windows 2k. And Windows 2k is no stellar example of a UI. It's just at about the tipping point where it got worse.

Yes, there are some with pretty graphics but from updates to software names to installation, Linux is just a pain in the ass to use.

Windows updates? A joke at best. A cacophony of per-program update tools--Microsoft Update is just great...if you only ever use Microsoft programs, which you probably don't. Software names? Yep. Microsoft Word is...what does that even mean? Installation? Well, did it come as a .zip or an .exe or an .msi? Will it demand installing DirectX yet again? Hey, is it even safe to run two installs at the same time--hint, most Linux package managers won't allow you to attempt it if you're using the main distro installer which, like the mentioned file copying locking thing, is simultaneous a point against Linux disto since it should be able to handle the scenario more graciously than a "lock held" message. Overall, it doesn't take much to find all sorts of "pain in the ass" in Windows. It's about the same as Linux. Pick your poison.

If all I did was browse the web, it would be fine. However, I need Word. Word, not Libre Office (which is about as good as AppleWorks). So what? I'm going to install WINE?

Well, then why are you trying to run Libre Office or AppleWorks if you need Word? Are you stupid or something?

I don't think I have the patience for all the hoops just to avoid shelling out a hundred bucks. Or a few hundred for the Apple tax.

A good rule of thumb. You shouldn't use Windows instead of Llinux or Mac OS X or Linux instead of Windows or Mac OS X or Mac OS X instead of Windows or Linux to save money. That's about the least motivational reason to do anything. The only real exception is if you're the sort of person who gets such pleasure out of saving money, no matter what. If you are, go with Linux or FreeBSD or OpenBSD or a variety of other free options. Otherwise, start first with what you need and go from there. I mean, your post is as stupid as if I were to bitch that Windows doesn't run the Linux version of Firefox well, if at all.

Right now, I have one machine not working. It runs Nas4Free. Yay open source!

Just one? You must be a young'n. Hardware faults abound to cause all sorts of issues on many old systems--bad hard drives, bad power supplies, and sometimes bad GPUs. I don't think I've ever blamed Windows or the various proprietary firmware for my woes. BTW, Nas4Free is based on FreeBSD. So, besides the "open source" tangent...not really Linux related like the rest of your post.

Re: Windows Linux for small business (1)

Tom Barders (3642919) | about 5 months ago | (#46925939)

Maybe you could explain why you "need word"? I've worked for companies which " need word " before. I could open their files just as easily (more quickly as well) in libreoffice. If you have a special case, i'm sure we'd all love to hear about it.

Re:Windows Linux for small business (0)

Boronx (228853) | about 5 months ago | (#46925993)

My experience is exactly the same. If I had a nickel for every time a linux box has been killed by an update, I'd have about half a dollar. Do I still need to re-compile the kernel to get 3-D acceleration to work?

Re:Windows Linux for small business (0)

TheMiddleRoad (1153113) | about 5 months ago | (#46926025)

Happened to me about 6 months ago. I was stunned. Notice I've been left as flamebait. What has Slashdot become? Home of the Linux weenies.

Linux developer arrogance (4, Insightful)

Eravnrekaree (467752) | about 5 months ago | (#46925703)

I am a supporter of Linux and open source and truly want it to be a success. I admit, however, that sometimes the arrogance of Linux developers is holding Linux back from acceptance. Such as refusal to have a compatability layer for binary driver compatability between kernel versions and the refusal to allow users to use binary drivers. For instance, I have heard that many Linux developers wanted to drop support for floppy disks, "because few Linux developers have floppy drives", despite there being tons of floppies around that users may need to access. THat says it all about the mentality of some Linux developers, they dont care about users, are arrogant, live in a bubble, are elitist and sort of think of Linux as their private club and sort of want it to be hard to use, because it makes them feel special since they are able to endure the pain of using it.

Re:Mod parent up (4, Informative)

Billly Gates (198444) | about 5 months ago | (#46925757)

This is why myself and Hairfeet no longer support Linux for average users.

I do admit I was more of a FreeBSD bigot but after 5 and 6 were so bad and I stayed with 4.x all the way to 4.12 I kind of gave up :-(

I do not care about RMS extreme ideology about freaking drivers. I WANT THEM TO JUST WORK. Why can't apps just work between versions like MacOSX, Solaris, FreeBSD with the compat libs, and even Windows?

I can click on a setup.exe from the XP era and unless it is a horribly written business app requiring local admin (more like win98 style written) it will run on Windows 8 no problem.

Why do ATI drivers from 2 years ago not run on Linux? ABI and API compatibilities as Linux developers feel that is evil and encourages binary blobs! Funny no other platform has this problem with them.

Socialist ideology about everyone that is closed source is harmful I know lets purposedly not include a stable ABi so things break when I do an apt-get update to force ATI and NVidia will just work. That is the ticket.

These companies are still struggling to make win 7 compatible apps and only care about the latest versions. My ATI drivers from 2011 will not work on a modern distro., Therefore I am choosing Windows and sticking to Linux for a VM. I might piss some some Slashdot moderators but I speak the truth. Why can't a stable ABI and API exist so one thing can just work? It is freaking 2014?

Re:Mod parent up (4, Interesting)

armanox (826486) | about 5 months ago | (#46925837)

I'm going to have to agree with your idea on this one - the GNU ideology is the problem. I don't care about all the politics that RMS does - I want stuff to work. I like a lot of things about Linux, but when it comes down to it, Solaris, BSD, and IRIX are all just as nice for what I'm after.

Which has lead me to advocate against desktop/laptop Linux, and I've even moved away from it on some of my personal servers (work is all still RHEL and Windows, which I can at least count on RHEL 6 to work for quite a while.

Re:Mod parent up (2)

Billly Gates (198444) | about 5 months ago | (#46925851)

It could be complexity too.

It is hard when you have many apis and libraries all changing all the time.

I think CentOS/Redhat offer something like this, but not for the average Slashdot geek. I like the idea of an equilivant of the SXS in Windows. You have dynamic loading of apis and .so's and the linker links the right one at run time. Today Linux requires each one to work and will segfault or crash otherwise if you have the wrong .so or dependency.

This will make storage larger but you wouldn't have issues like wanting to use the latest gimp, but still run Gnome 2. hmm problem here etc.

Re: Mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925991)

I thought of writing a reply to refute all your points but on second thought that would be a waste of time since you are paid sock puppet shills.

Re:Mod parent up (0)

ruir (2709173) | about 5 months ago | (#46925917)

You cant be serious. I dont give a single care to GNU whatever, and also use Mac in the desktop, however linux in the server side is strong and excellent.

Re:Mod parent up (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925973)

It has nothing to do with GNU (and your probably talking more about the FSF anyway, not the GNU project). But anyway. It's not an open source vs free software issue. It has everything to do with the fact people don't f'ing get what the real problem is. If you buy shitty hardware that's not cooperating with the projects maintaining the OS your going to get shitty support for your hardware. Buy hardware from vendors that actually work with the OS maintainers and you'll get completely different results. The GNU/Linux developers can't support your shitty proprietary hardware because they don't have access to the code, and I damm well know the hardware vendors you buy from won't. They don't support it in Microsoft Windows so what makes you think they'll do a better job in GNU/Linux when GNU/Linux desktop distributions are more bleeding edge?

Re:Mod parent up (2, Insightful)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#46925857)

Why do ATI drivers from 2 years ago not run on Linux? ABI and API compatibilities as Linux developers feel that is evil and encourages binary blobs! Funny no other platform has this problem with them.

Man, I'd be happy if we could get a commitment to source-level backwards compatibility; let alone binary compatibility. Some of those library developers are vicious in culling old programs.

Re:Mod parent up (1)

exomondo (1725132) | about 5 months ago | (#46925887)

I do not care about RMS extreme ideology about freaking drivers.

The reality is most people do not even know about that ideology and ultimately the attempts to sell the idea are on the basis of it being cheap: gratis, not libre.

I know there is this whole "locked in" deal but who really feels that way? I haven't had any problems working across multiple operating systems and devices. The vast majority of the web is obviously platform agnostic, pictures, movies and music are all easily moved back and forth across platforms and even sending documents is no problem. Sending a word doc to somebody who doesn't have MS Word? Well there's functionality in word to send it as a PDF or you can upload to something like Google docs which does a pretty good job at importing for most things. For regular users where is the lock in? The only time I've ever found the issue of platform lock in was switching phone platforms and not being able to move my SMS messages to the new phone.

Re:Mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925909)

My ATI drivers from 2011 will not work on a modern distro., Therefore I am choosing Windows and sticking to Linux for a VM.

WTF?? Sorry, why do you want to use your ATI drivers from 2011? Sentimental reasons?
What am I missing here?

Re: Mod parent up (1)

Tom Barders (3642919) | about 5 months ago | (#46925919)

Try installing an ati driver for Windows xp in Windows 8. How about your printer driver, will that work? Your old webcam? Scanner? Sound card? Floppy disk drive? Zip drive? I recently was helping fix a friends computer (no browser Internet access. It's using Windows 7 and I verified it's a software problem, not hardware). During the process, I plugged in your basic flash drive with a few portable apps so I could scan her whole drive. Windows failed to find a driver the first time and took at least ten minutes the second. I booted her machine into a live Linux environment (puppy Linux), and it immediately found the flash drive. Sure, Windows drivers are better. /s

Re:Mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925955)

They don't work because you continue to purchase crappy hardware. It's that simple. If companies won't release the f'ing code don't buy there hardware. I've never had such a hard time on GNU/Linux as I've had on MS Windows. Those proprietary drivers are just as much of a PITA on MS Windows as they are on GNU/Linux. I shouldn't have to throw out my printer because Lexmark doesn't support the most recent version of MS Windows. That's absolutely ridicules. I get GNU/Linux's development model and I'm far from the most up-to-date as far as OS releases, but I DO upgrade more than once per computer. Release good code often and you don't want a stable ABI. It just promotes really bad practices. If you get that and you get that the ABI can't remain consistent then you'll buy better supported hardware and have a better user expierence. Stop blaming GNU/Linux for your shitty purchasing choices already.

Re:Mod parent up (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46926003)

Why do ATI drivers from 2 years ago not run on Linux? ABI and API compatibilities as Linux developers feel that is evil and encourages binary blobs! Funny no other platform has this problem with them.

Who do drivers for Windows 7 not work on Vista?? I can't even get my printer to be recognized that works perfectly in Linux. That's what I want to know. I've never had that problem on any other platform!!!

That's why I am choosing Linux and sticking to Windows in a VM. I might pis off some Slashdot moderators, but I speak the truth. Why can't a stable ABI and API exist so one thing can just work?? IT is freaking 2014.

Re:Linux developer arrogance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925775)

Case in point from an earlier comment:

"The thing is, Linux engineers would have no problem learning Windows stuff, while the opposite is more seldom."

Re:Linux developer arrogance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925977)

For instance, I have heard that many Linux developers wanted to drop support for floppy disks, "because few Linux developers have floppy drives", despite there being tons of floppies around that users may need to access.

Well, if you know about how things work in the linux world, you should also know that drivers have to be maintained, no? Who is, then, maintaining the driver for your floppy? Are you? Are you paying for it?
You know there is a lack of workforce for linux, right? There is a (obvious) lack of resources.
As this post says [slashdot.org] , try installing drivers for Windows XP in Windows 8... How about installing XP in a Win8 system? Or vice-versa?

THat says it all about the mentality of some Linux developers, they dont care about users, are arrogant, live in a bubble, are elitist and sort of think of Linux as their private club and sort of want it to be hard to use, because it makes them feel special since they are able to endure the pain of using it.

Some are elitists, but I think most wish they could do better to keep making linux the best OS out there.

Re:Linux developer arrogance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925987)

I am a supporter of Linux and open source and truly want it to be a success. I admit, however, that sometimes the arrogance of Linux developers is holding Linux back from acceptance.

Perhaps because not all Linux developers are seeking for Linux to gain acceptance? That may be because of arrogance. Or it could be that they, you know, are developing Linux for people who use Linux. They're not marketers trying to comb the crowd on how best to mold Linux to lure people in. They're not businessmen trying to gain market share. They're just people who have a system they use and want to make it work best for them and like minded people--aka, other developers who are willing to put the time and energy into it.

Such as refusal to have a compatability layer for binary driver compatability between kernel versions and the refusal to allow users to use binary drivers.

For the former, that comes in many flavors from the fact that there's a desire to have as much source code as possible to tinker with--they're developers after all--to the fact that the Linux kernel is consistently being rewritten in massive scales that, left with a compatibility layer, would leave anarchistic messes all over the place--plenty of developers are troubled enough keeping the user space ABI going. For the latter, users can do whatever the fuck they want. That's the beauty of open source. Now, if a user *does* use a binary driver and then has a problem, sure, the developers will likely refuse to help because (1) they very well might not be able to help given they don't have said drivers, (2) trying to disassemble said drivers is a major hassle, and (3) the above does nothing to work towards improving whatever open source equivalents they may exist and ends up being a very particular distraction from their efforts to further develop the system.

I mean, sure, it can be a fun little game of psychic detective trying to guess why, yet again, the binary ATI driver black screens at this specific time with this specific app under these specific circumstances. But odds are good only AMD can do anything about it to really fix the issue anyways, as they have the source. Meanwhile in Windows land, you're in the same boat of trying to file a bug report or post on a forum somewhere and crossing your fingers that an AMD engineer reads it or someone else with a similar problem knows of some magic fix.

For instance, I have heard that many Linux developers wanted to drop support for floppy disks, "because few Linux developers have floppy drives", despite there being tons of floppies around that users may need to access. THat says it all about the mentality of some Linux developers, ...

Heard from whom? And even if it's true, so what? Just because "many Linux developers" want something doesn't inherently mean much of anything. Linus has final say on what gets dropped from the main tree. Now, if Linus were discussing it, then it'd be an issue. And to that end, I do agree it's annoying at times when features get dropped. But even in that circumstance, you have the real possibility of using an older tree if features get dropped, just like how Windows can drop features and you can use an older version there. Or are we to pretend there aren't people who still want to keep using their Drivespace drives?

... they dont care about users, are arrogant, live in a bubble, are elitist and sort of think of Linux as their private club and sort of want it to be hard to use, because it makes them feel special since they are able to endure the pain of using it.

No doubt true for some. But all of what you said basically describes basically all developers to some extent. They care about their users, but they don't necessarily kiss ever users ass when it comes to fulfilling feature requests. There's a sort of arrogance to "well, just write it yourself if you want it so much" which of course is a counter towards the implied arrogant "I'm the user and you must write what I want". There's the bubble of actually doing development and having an idea of what's possible with what sort of effort and how much people who actually work on it are willing to invest their time to do things. The very nature of the development model is that Linus has selected "elite" lieutenants to actually manage all the various subsystems development and that the group is effective a private club--membership being something that you earn through a lot of effort. And the "sort of want it hard to use"? Well, no. But there's a recognition that "do what I want, not what I said" is a shitty way to try to write things and so "hard to use" for you is often more "there's the old way and any new way would be either a reformulation of that--and why would I want to relearn something new that's just as arbitrary--or a DWIW, NWIS which doesn't work".

Put another way, computers and technology are inherently hard to use in a lot of ways. And a lot of the ways that make it "easier" for users are often crippling for a developer to use--every time I see a GUI-only program that does a simple task on a file-by-file open, modify, save basis, I cringe. Sure, a GUI *also* would be nice, but then developers don't like writing those (there's 101 edge cases that are annoying to deal with) and users can't be bothered to learn to write them either. I mean, hell, as much as developers often mock VB for being a crippled sort of a language, as a go-between wrapper for command line programs, it's great and I wish more users would use it.

But, yea, VB is its own proprietary thing. And no one likes dealing with all the edge cases just like no one likes to write all the lengthy documentation*. So, we can just all point fingers and speak of arrogance and elitism and whatever. But, it really all misses the point that everyone is just lazy buggers who don't like doing the trite work. Because that's the big road block on all OSs and of which Windows is often hamstrung in its own ways--a lack of a CLI to plenty of programs and limited GUIs that have nasty locking behavior and/or lots of gotcha bugs or really limited functionality (or all of the above).

*For sufficiently large values of "no one". Some people do like that stuff. But clearly this whole discussion is happening because those people aren't numerous enough and engaged enough to fill the void.

Re:Linux developer arrogance (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46926001)

Seriously? You are going to sit here and deride folks for not providing free software that works the way you expect? For not taking the opinion of folks that don't speak up and express their view into consideration?

IMO, the problem is less with the Linux and open source community and more of a cultural one. In the US especially, convenience is king. So long as shit works the way I've been trained to expect it, the better. Nevermind that I've not contributed in a meaningful way. Won't stop me from grousing about how my unspoken opinion on the matter wasn't taken into consideration at the relevant moment.

Re:Linux developer arrogance (1)

linuxrocks123 (905424) | about 5 months ago | (#46926031)

Got a link for that? Linux supports oodles of ridiculously obscure hardware, and support is rarely removed. Yes, they dropped 386 (not 32-bit x86 ... literal Intel 80386 as opposed to 80486) support some months ago; that was a special case because the weirdness of that architecture was permeating the kernel ... but a standard floppy disk drive? I can't imagine they'd be dropping support for that. That support most likely lives in some driver file somewhere and takes approximately zero developer time to keep up to date.

Sounds like they put an PHB in charge of IT (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925735)

He abuses the same buzzwords that liberal arts managers love to use to sound important. He sounds like he's been sold by MS-sales' song and dance.

No such thing (1, Flamebait)

Pro923 (1447307) | about 5 months ago | (#46925777)

As an efficient worker with Linux. Most people spend all of their time dicking around with things that should be seamless and simple. Sure, they did all kinds of "work" that day, but people pay for products - not the 50% of the time that the developer spends screwing with something as complex and do-it-yourself as git.

Re:No such thing (1)

dltaylor (7510) | about 5 months ago | (#46925793)

Not counting the pointless hours I've spent trying to find ANYTHING in Visual Studio, and that is even IF it can do what I need done. It is always faster to look it up on the 'net than use Microsoft's useless "help".

Wrong side of history (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925847)

I wish this guy was the CIO of some company whose stock I could short.

Help Wanted Linux Medical Assistant/Secretary (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46925863)

General office work & clerical duties such as answer phones, typing, faxing, copying, scanning, data entry, drafting correspondence, sorting mail, etc.
45 word per min.
Must know Linux/Ubuntu and have Working knowledge of Open Office: Writer, Calc and Thunderbird.

How much more would this Linux secretary cost vs a windows secretary.
A new $700 computer with windows and a $400 copy of MS office cost $1100. If you upgrade every 3 years thats less than $400 per year.

By my math if the Linux secretary cost $0.20+ per hour more than the windows you wont be saving any money.
Most Software/hardware is cheap compare to the cost of employees.

Re:Help Wanted Linux Medical Assistant/Secretary (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 5 months ago | (#46926019)

I'm not clear here, does Linux use some different keyboard and file system paradigm than Windows?

Meanwhile, on the technician frontlines (2)

Kremmy (793693) | about 5 months ago | (#46925915)

Over the past month or so I've run into a number of cases of "slow internet" which turned out to be compromised XP machines. Not just a simple case of malware or botnet action, but cases where people have went so far as to replace their ISPs to mitigate their "slow internet" when the reality is that the malware is just hammering it THAT hard. This is just not cool, some of these people have spent more money on Microsoft than I care to think about, and I can't in good conscience ever honestly recommend a Microsoft solution again after seeing how bad some of these cases are. The great thing is that for the portion of my customers who went with the upgrade cycle, they're getting the full glory of Windows 8 and my god how many just want 7 back. It really is XP/Vista all over again...

Re:Meanwhile, on the technician frontlines (1)

Boronx (228853) | about 5 months ago | (#46926035)

Only box I ever had with a rooted was a linux box. Some a-hole turned into a spam server.

Sure... (1)

edibobb (113989) | about 5 months ago | (#46925937)

Sure, if you consider the bribes, campaign contributions, lobbying gifts, and other payouts.

Re:Sure... (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 5 months ago | (#46926027)

Not to mention the software and licensing fee hikes that small and medium sized businesses have endures so Microsoft can sell heavily discounted licenses to large organizations to bring that magic TCO down.

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