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InfoWorld on Switching to Linux

michael posted more than 11 years ago | from the you-will-be-assimiliated dept.

Linux Business 319

brentlaminack writes "The latest Infoworld is running a lengthy piece about The Real Cost of Switching to Linux, where it makes sense and where it doesn't. As one of their columnists points out, the debate has switched from "if" to "where". One of the big wins for Linux was in the area of remote administration. Specifically noted was ssh. Also of note is the shift in calculating cost from TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) as has been calculated in the past, to ROI (Return on Investment) that focuses more on what you can do with the technology to get work done."

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GNAA wants to fuck you Lunix Fudgepackers! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834543)

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Help! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834546)

My nutz are totally itching!

Michael Sims is a Domain Name Terrorist (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834562)

Click here for article [spectacle.org]

Michael Sims, Domain Hijacking and Moral Equivalency by Jonathan Wallace jw@bway.net [mailto]

How would you feel if your webmaster maliciously took your web-site offline, then, when you demanded its return, put up a site attacking your company at your old URL? It happened to a group I was involved in, the Censorware Project, currently at http://www.censorware.net [censorware.net] . The purpose of this essay is to put the behavior on record, and to give you some impressions and inferences about it.

The Censorware Project was originally an informal collective of six people who collaborated online to fight censorware: Seth Finkelstein [sethf.com] , Bennett Haselton [peacefire.org] , Jamie McCarthy [mccarthy.vg] , Mike Sims, Jim Tyre and myself. Several of us had never met or even spoken on the phone, yet for some time -- around two years as I recall -- we had a remarkably easy collaboration. There was no funding, no hierarchy, no titles, not even project managers. Someone would suggest a project and take the responsibility for a part of it, others would sign up for other elements, and proceeding this way we got a remarkable amount of work done, including reports on X-Stop, Cyberpatrol, Bess and other censorware products.

Even though two of us were attorneys -- Jim and myself -- we never incorporated the group or wrote a charter or any contracts among ourselves. Mike Sims was obliging enough to register the domain, just as other members paid for press releases and the other incidental expenses which came along. Mike also served as webmaster of the censorware.org site and did substantial work [sethf.com] for the group, including writing contributions to several of the reports and lead authorship of at least one. Seth was the source [sethf.com] of our decrypted censorware blacklists [sethf.com] and managed many technical tasks, but later felt he had to leave the group because of the increasing prospects of a lawsuit [chillingeffects.org] , particularly under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA). After Seth left the group, the remaining five continued.

Robert Frost said that "nothing gold can stay," and the Censorware Project was no exception. Over the summer of 2000, Mike Sims' reaction to a perceived slight from Jim Tyre was to take the site down for a week. He sent us mail at the time saying something like "The Censorware Project is now closed." [sethf.com] I replied to him that, given that the group was a collective and we all had an interest in its work product, the domain, and the goodwill it had achieved, the decision was not his to make. Sims did not reply.

After Seth created a partial, text, mirror, Mike put the site back up a week later without explaining, let alone apologizing for, his actions. Given his continuing failure to answer any email from me (and I think from others) and the overall signs that Sims thought the group was exclusively his, I wrote him several emails requesting that he turn the domain over to Jamie or Bennett, as I felt we could no longer trust him to administer it. We also found out during that time that important email from people trying to contact us, including members of the press, was not being answered by Sims, nor being forwarded to other members.

I ultimately became exasperated that my name was listed as a principal on what had now become a "rogue" site I had no control over. Over about a five week period, I wrote Sims several more emails asking him to delete my name from the site if he wasn't going to transfer the domain. Again, I received no reply.

In November 2000, Sims took the Censorware Project site offline again, with a message saying "Due to demands from some of the people who contributed, in however minor a fashion, to this site, it has been taken down." Judging from some email I received from him at the time, this meant me.

Its a sad thing, both because we got some good work done and because some of the other members of the group were eager to continue and in fact have continued working, while deprived then of the Censorware Project site, name, email aliases and public recognition. Within a few months after, we relaunched the site [archive.org] , with the original content, at http://www.censorware.net [censorware.net] . We only had the content available because Seth Finkelstein had mirrored it -- the rest of us trusted Mike and therefore had not maintained an archive out of his control.

But all the hundreds or thousands of links Censorware Project had build-up over the years still pointed to the old site. In some cases, it was impossible to fix them, since they were from mailing-list archives, old web news pages, in print, or webmasters didn't want to be to be bothered with edits. And anyone who tried to get in touch with us by sending mail to the previous contact address would have their message trashed by Sims.

In 2002, amidst the publicity of a major trial against a Federal censorware law ("CIPA" [ala.org] ), Sims made further changes to the censorware.org site. He expanded it with an essay accusing various other members of the project, principally Seth, of bad behavior. Remarkably, in his chronology of events, he does not deny nor even try to explain his take-down of the domain of a busy activist group which did not at all consent to being robbed of its domain:

... A few weeks later, the last shreds flew apart in a couple of bitter emails back and forth, and the website came down. I was asked nicely by Jamie McCarthy to restore the site. Reconsidering my hasty actions, I did so.

... It was conveyed to me that Tyre and Seth were pleased that I had given in to Jamie's request and restored the site, because that meant that Seth could spider (use an automated tool to download every webpage) all the content off of the site in preparation for putting it up elsewhere. That is to say, what I thought was a sincere and honest request from Jamie was actually a sort of trojan horse - made under a dishonest pretense.

That was the last straw. At the beginning of November, the site came down, for good.

Michael has now set things up so that every pointer to former censorware.org content leads to his attacks. What this means is that hundreds or thousands of links which were put up elsewhere to Censorware Project content during our hey-day now, when followed, lead to Michael's denunciation of the group. Try the experiment -- invent a URL starting with censorware.org, such as http://censorware.org/DomainHijackedByMichaelSims/ index.html and you will get to Michael's rant.

Although we made some attempt to contact people maintaining pages that linked to us, and ask them to redirect the link to the new www.censorware.net, we could not contact all of them, and some never made the change. My own Ethical Spectacle [spectacle.org] site had scores of links to Censorware.org -- and every time I thought I had changed them all, I would find a few more.

In short, this is a colossal and continuing act of malice by our former webmaster, Michael Sims. It's not even ambiguous -- you can go and read Mike's essay at censorware.org and confirm that he admits he did it.

Astonishingly, there were no consequences [sethf.com] to Michael, as far as I know, for taking down the Censorware Project content [sethf.com] and redirecting its substantial web traffic, first to a page which said the group no longer existed, and now to his rant against its members. We had some internal discussions about suing him to get the domain back. I thought there might be some merit in it and that we might be able to prove common law collective ownership of the domain by establishing our mutual contributions of work and money to create the content which was published on the site. However, another lawyer, much more knowledgeable about these things than I am, believed that the fact that Michael had been allowed by us to register the domain in his own name would be definitive and that we would lose.

The Censorware Project had been invited to participate in a mailing list of free speech organizations known as IFEA [ifea.net] -Plan. After Michael took down Censorware.org, several of us requested that he be removed from IFEA [ifea.net] -Plan because he had so badly violated our confidence. (His current rant on the site reveals a number of confidential communications he received over the years.) The list-master declined to delete him and we got a number of "We don't want to get in the middle of this" type messages from various other participants.

I was naively astonished by these. If the ACLU [aclu.org] 's webmaster had trashed the organization's site, I think everyone would pretty well recognize he was a Bad Character and Not To Be Trusted. As much more minor players, despite the significant contributions we had made in revealing what censorware actually blocked, no-one could be bothered to take a stand for us. There was nothing to be gained.

Another thing I learned from the experience is the pretty obvious lesson that it is ultimately hard to decide whom to trust when relationships are based on email and lack the significant visual cues we usually use in making trust-related determinations. However, I had met Mike in person twice, while there are other members of the Censorware Project I have never laid eyes upon.

Also, even in the most collegial, relaxed and rewarding collaborations, its good to have a written contract -- exactly the advice I used to give law clients but that none of us thought to adopt to protect ourselves against the eventuality of a rogue member. Click here for article [spectacle.org]

Picture (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834576)

of my cock [fuckmeter.com]

who cares (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834578)

this website fucking sucks. fuck you linux nerds.

Long term benefits (5, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834579)

Thing that I've noticed is that if a large organization gets into Linux, even if they buy it, it's theirs for the duration and all of the upgrades that they can work into it, instead of requiring either yearly site license fees or massive payouts every so many years for new versions of software to do essentially the same thing. Even paying a consulting company or services company to deploy Debian would make sense in a way, as long as the apt server were the organization's, versus a public server, so that as long as someone is maintaining the package database on the local apt server, they can keep updating the workstations.

Large organizations usually have some form of IS department, so instead of paying them to run around and fix Windows Millennium or XP problems, pay them to keep the network deployed OS current, and fix the bulk of the problems from their desks.

They still don't get it (5, Interesting)

passthecrackpipe (598773) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834618)

"The jury is in. After years of experimentation with Linux in the enterprise, customers, analysts, and vendors are starting to sing a consistent tune about where Linux makes financial sense and where it doesn't."

They still don' t get it. Even though the article is moderately positive, any article about Linux that starts with "the Jury is in" was written by someone who does not fully understand the dynamics of Open Source. How can "the jury" be "in" on an environment that changes so rapidly as Linux does? How can you say for certain where Linux has a role and where it doesn't? A move in the right direction, but the hacks still need some educating.....

Re:They still don't get it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834686)

How can "the jury" be "in" on an environment that changes so rapidly as Linux does? How can you say for certain where Linux has a role and where it doesn't? A move in the right direction, but the hacks still need some educating.....

The same can be said for almost any OS.

Although Linux changes often, it's overall features don't change very much. What happens when Linux finally clones all the features of other OSes? Sure, it will continue to "change" but only for bug fixes and performance improvements.

Overall, the system is still the same.

Re:They still don't get it (3, Interesting)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834752)

"Overall, the system is still the same."

I won't go quite that far, but the availability of source code in such quantity means that a program won't suddenly be orphaned because the new version of the OS doesn't support that binary anymore, like Microsoft is doing with programs that were originally released for Windows 3.1 and Windows NT 3.5. Functionality can be maintained through a little amount of work.

Re:They still don't get it (4, Insightful)

KoolDude (614134) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834700)


IMHO, we should not worry about the managers who still don't "get it". They eat all the FUD MS/SCO/IDC is feeding them. All these managers will eventually realise their mistake when their competition adopting Linux/Open Source tools is able to offer better price for same product/service. When they start losing business, they will really "get it". Seriously, there is a change at hand here and the economics will play its part. only question is 'How soon ?'

Re:They still don't get it (1)

passthecrackpipe (598773) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834828)

yeah, I agree, but I wasn't talking about managers, I was talking about the journos that talk about OSS. Even good managers can only act on the info they have, and sadly most of that still comes from websites, analysts, and public opinion.

The price gap is slowly converging, on the hand because Linux is simply costing more then it did 2 years ago, and on the other because Linux is forcing other vendors to drop their prices. The biggest mistake we are all making is hyping up the price benefits, without pointing to the larger and better long term benefits. This is hard in an industry where *everybody* has been conditioned to look no further then a 5 year horizon, but the long term benefits of OSS are the ones that *really* count. Whatever.....

Hate to rain on your parade, but... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834647)


Thing that I've noticed is that if a large organization gets into Linux, even if they buy it, it's theirs for the duration and all of the upgrades that they can work into it, instead of requiring either yearly site license fees or massive payouts every so many years for new versions of software to do essentially the same thing.

This is true so long as the product stays locked in a back room. As soon as you go out into the rest of the world, however, Linux belongs to Richard Stallman every bit as much as Windows belongs to Bill Gates & Paul Allen.

You link to a GPL'ed library, you gotta release your source [sayonara, chance to profit]. Ever use a function like printf()? Then tell me: Is stdio.h GPLed or LGPLed? Ever use a function like sin()? Then tell me: Is math.h GPLed or LGPLed? Got a legal department that has the time to run through all the code in all the libraries to see what's GPLed, what's LGPLed, and what's other?

And you can forget about making changes to someone else's GPLed source and hope to profit from your work...

Chance of rain: slight... (5, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834697)

If you're developing on it. If you're using it for regular users who need email and web and word processing, it doesn't matter what the licensing is. Your memo written in ABIWord doesn't have to contain the GPL.

And if you're developing, there are commercial libraries available to you. There are BSD-licensed libraries too. You don't have to use Stallman's libraries, you can get them elsewhere. Hell, IBM even builds compilers, as does Intel. The entire point of GPLed stuff is for it to remain for everyone. If you don't like that, build it yourself, buy it, or find another non-GPL one.

It's not impossible to do this. It just takes brains and research. I'd rather sink my money into that than into a mindless purchase of a product that goes "BOOM!" far too frequently and forces one into paid upgrades.

Cool trolling, but ... (4, Informative)

LordKaT (619540) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834710)

You missed the total point of the parent.

What you failed to understand about the parents post is that he is talking about site license fees, renewal fees, etc ... You don't have to spend $500/seat with Linux every five years as you do with Microsoft. "It's theirs for the duration" means, simply, that they don't need to pay out the nose. Itdoes not refer to the GPL.

A note about the GPL, which you also missed, is that if you make a change to somones GPL'd software, you must also make your code GPL, or a compatible license. However, providing source code is a provision only when you are distributing. If you don't distribute that work outside of the company, your GPL'd work doesn't see the light of day. Once you distribute it, however, you need to provide a way for the person who obtained the binary to obtain the source code.

Also, you need not provide everyone with the source code: you only need to provide those who have obtained, through you, the source code in question. Of course, they are also given the right to use, modify and distribute that source code. However, that doesn't mean you need to put it on a public FTP server in a tarball for every person in the world to download. Which, actually, destorys your argument in it's entierty really. You can profit, you just can't have a stranglehold on the world with your technology.

--LordKaT

Re:Cool trolling, but ... (1)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834770)

Regarding your reference to Borland's suite, you'd think that people have already forgotten how they used to write applications for MS-DOS, Windows, and OS/2 back before all of the free licenses became mainstream...

Re:Hate to rain on your parade, but... (1)

Perl-Pusher (555592) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834730)

That is such a load of crap! I can't begin to address all of it. If your worried, first use Kylix [borland.com] it is a commercial development suite. Next, there are plenty of commercial products available for linux. Third,you obviously know nothing about the GPL and it's requirements so why do you post such dribble. You can change anything in the source code of a GPL's product and use it for your benefit, what you can't do is redistribute it. If the GPL were so restrictive companies such as theKomany.com couldn't exist. So go back and research your topic before posting.

fp (-1)

handybundler (232934) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834580)

fourth post, you damn hippies, becasue it's another slow day at slashdot

YOU FAIL IT! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834658)

YOU FAIL IT! YOU got teh SEVENTH POST you damn FAILURE because IT's another slow FAILURE at slashdot.

fourth post is third FAILURE! YOU FAIL at FAILURE!

how does it feel to FAIL so much?

Glad to see the mainstream starting to get it (3, Informative)

Crashmarik (635988) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834583)

The real value of Linux is it allows an I.T. staff to get a job done in an organization. If it has to work if it has to be done it can be. In more beureaucratic organizations the effect is even more pronounced as no one has to seek approval to get the needed piece of software while the company is down.

What I would like to see is one of these TCO surveys that consider the cost of software audit compliance and purchase approval on the windows side.

What I don't understand (3, Insightful)

dj28 (212815) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834584)

I understand that Linux is the new darling of the tech industry, but why do reviews like this completely ignore operating systems likee FreeBSD (which out performs Linux in several serving tasks, and is in general more mature)? People who write these reviews on TCO and other stats think Linux is the only alternative to Windows servers. It gets annoying after a while.

Re:What I don't understand (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834593)


Elegy For *BSD


I am a *BSD user
and I try hard to be brave
That is a tall order
*BSD's foot is in the grave.

I tap at my toy keyboard
and whistle a happy tune
but keeping happy's so hard,
*BSD died so soon.

Each day I wake and softly sob
Nightfall finds me crying
Not only am I a zit faced slob
but *BSD is dying.


Re:What I don't understand (3, Interesting)

grub (11606) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834596)

You'll find that some places use Linux as a stepping stone to get into the more mature *nix-like OSes. The switch from Linux->FreeBSD isn't nearly as daunting as the quantum leap from Windows->Linux.

Re: What I don't understand (1)

gidds (56397) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834880)

The switch from Linux->FreeBSD isn't nearly as daunting as the quantum leap from Windows->Linux.

But that's beside the point; the point is why Windows->Linux should be any less daunting than Windows->FreeBSD.

Re:What I don't understand (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834615)

It is now official - Netcraft has confirmed: *BSD is dying

Yet another crippling bombshell hit the beleaguered *BSD community when recently IDC confirmed that *BSD accounts for less than a fraction of 1 percent of all servers. Coming on the heels of the latest Netcraft survey which plainly states that *BSD has lost more market share, this news serves to reinforce what we've known all along. *BSD is collapsing in complete disarray, as fittingly exemplified by failing dead last [samag.com] [samag.com] in the recent Sys Admin comprehensive networking test.

You don't need to be a Kreskin [amazingkreskin.com] [amazingkreskin.com] to predict *BSD's future. The hand writing is on the wall: *BSD faces a bleak future. In fact there won't be any future at all for *BSD because *BSD is dying. Things are looking very bad for *BSD. As many of us are already aware, *BSD continues to lose market share. Red ink flows like a river of blood. FreeBSD is the most endangered of them all, having lost 93% of its core developers. The sudden and unpleasant departures of long time FreeBSD developers Jordan Hubbard and Mike Smith only serve to underscore the point more clearly. There can no longer be any doubt: FreeBSD is dying.

Let's keep to the facts and look at the numbers.

OpenBSD leader Theo states that there are 7000 users of OpenBSD. How many users of NetBSD are there? Let's see. The number of OpenBSD versus NetBSD posts on Usenet is roughly in ratio of 5 to 1. Therefore there are about 7000/5 = 1400 NetBSD users. BSD/OS posts on Usenet are about half of the volume of NetBSD posts. Therefore there are about 700 users of BSD/OS. A recent article put FreeBSD at about 80 percent of the *BSD market. Therefore there are (7000+1400+700)*4 = 36400 FreeBSD users. This is consistent with the number of FreeBSD Usenet posts.

Due to the troubles of Walnut Creek, abysmal sales and so on, FreeBSD went out of business and was taken over by BSDI who sell another troubled OS. Now BSDI is also dead, its corpse turned over to yet another charnel house.

All major surveys show that *BSD has steadily declined in market share. *BSD is very sick and its long term survival prospects are very dim. If *BSD is to survive at all it will be among OS hobbyist dabblers. *BSD continues to decay. Nothing short of a miracle could save it at this point in time. For all practical purposes, *BSD is dead.

Fact: *BSD is dead

The joys of form trolling (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834809)

Trolls aren't even coming up with new material these days. This "press release" is exactly the same as:

"Windows is dying" ( http://pepper.idge.net/slashdot/windows_is_dying )

"I love you is dying" ( http://images.kuro5hin.org/comments/2002/7/5/14114 0/5022/28#28 )

"The web is decaying" ( http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=31884&cid=3434 520 )

"Google is dying" ( http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=43480&cid=4543 715 )

"Gtk+ is dying" ( http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=76201&cid=6800 540 )

If you're going to troll, at least come up with something original.

Re:What I don't understand (1, Funny)

manual_overide (134872) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834623)

don't you realize?! BSD is DYING!!!! it has been for 10 years and will only continue to die over the next 10 or 20.

people want long-term solutions here, and how can an operating system that will surely die within the next 30 years be long term?

Answer: it can't, my friend. it just can't

Re:What I don't understand (1)

manual_overide (134872) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834762)

jeeze... who's the spoil-sport with all the mod points and no sense of humor??

Re:What I don't understand (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834634)

Although it is true that BSD is dying, there are some helpful steps you can take ease your sorrow:
  • deal with the inevitable.
  • grieve for your loss.
  • move on. Never let your emotions get mixed up with something as silly as a computer operating system. It isn't healthy. So BSD fails. Big whoop. Deal with it and move on. Hope this helps.

Re:What I don't understand (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834638)

Well we've seen a rising use of BSDs in the last few months, I think one of the reason is the rise of the usage of linux, many admins are aware of BSD but cannot use it until the management gives an ok to use some kind of ix meaning linux.
Moving from Linux to BSD is a no brainer if you have the right hardware then.

Re:What I don't understand (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834641)

I understand that Linux is the new darling of the tech industry, but why do reviews like this completely ignore operating systems likee FreeBSD (which out performs Linux in several serving tasks, and is in general more mature)?

I'm glad you brought that up because I have a question that has been burning for a while. FreeBSD, like Linux, is an essentially free UNIX. Let's not argue licenses and the like, just look at them both as free in code and price.

What makes Slashdot readers think Linux will take over the desktop and server markets when FreeBSD didn't?

They are both very similar but were released at different times. PCs that ran Windows were still a few grand and so were RISC workstations. Both are free in cost and have the source publically available.

How is the situation different now and why will Linux succeed when another solid, free, x86 based UNIX-like OS failed?

Answer (2, Insightful)

greenrd (47933) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834808)

Linux has better hardware suppport than *BSD.

Re:What I don't understand (1)

Perl-Pusher (555592) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834882)

1) Hardware support 2) Ease of installation 3) Name recognition 4) See above

Re:What I don't understand (3, Funny)

holzp (87423) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834673)

Because FreeBSD has a devil for it's mascot so naturally most people think it is affiliated with Microsoft.

Linux is more popular and visible. (1)

no reason to be here (218628) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834699)

the various BSD's don't have the rabid hordes of evangelists that Linux has. So many IT people are fans of Linux, but don't know much and have not tried any of the BSD's. My room mate used to bad mouth the BSD's all the time (after playing with freeBSD for all of five minutes), but after seeing enough posts about openBSD's stability and security, he tried it for his webserver and DNS and he loves it (though he'll still bad mouth freeBSD on occasion).

Re:Linux is more popular and visible. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834708)

HAHAHA

they don't?

what kind of crack are you smoking?

Re:Linux is more popular and visible. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834872)

Your roommate sounds like he's all evangelist and not much else.

Re:What I don't understand (1)

rusty0101 (565565) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834709)

Is it possible that this is due to the lack of news of such a migration?

While I am sure that there are a large number of companies with deployments of varients of BSD, I would appreciate pointers to articles that show companies making a migration from any operating system to any BSD varient.

We do not see companies even reporting that they are migrating to all OS X, which uses much of BSD as parts of it's infrastructure, yet we are seeing articles and reports of reasonably large companies that are migrating from earlier Unix platforms to Linux (Amazon and Burlington Coat Factory as examples) or from NT to Linux (Cedars-Sinai from this article).

While there may be articles out there documenting companies moving to BSD, I have not seen any. Other than the OS X release, can you point to 5 articles in the past 5 years in the popular press that document such a migration?

This article is specific to the assumed cost of moving from some platform to Linux. Not to BSD. It really is not a review of the many potential migration options that exist.

-Rusty

Re:What I don't understand (2, Insightful)

Master Bait (115103) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834757)

Indeed. I also wonder why they keep plugging away at the 'support' and 'training' issue. Some tech journal's articles seem to be written from a strictly corporate/academic standpoint.

That was definitely the case at IDG in the late 80's. I then worked at a company that did some Linotronic service bureau work for IDG. Their journalists were hired based on their history as journalists, and not on IT experience.

Now, we keep seeing articles based on IT buzzwords, rather than people's dirty hands. BSD would get mentioned in articles, but only if they bought ads to run in those magazines. If Dell decided to sell machines with a BSD preinstalled and advertised the fact or sent press releases, then it would be mentioned. Otherwise, those journalist's world is very, very small

Re:What I don't understand (1)

Florian Weimer (88405) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834765)

I understand that Linux is the new darling of the tech industry, but why do reviews like this completely ignore operating systems likee FreeBSD (which out performs Linux in several serving tasks, and is in general more mature)?

They don't. They just use "Linux" as a catchy term to summarize all free UNIX replacements. Only if they write about support by the big names for running their proprietary software, they write "Linux" if they mean "Red Hat Linux" (or "SuSE Linux"). But who wants to run proprietary software and reintroduce the problem of non-cooperating vendors, licensing troubles, inevitable software life cycles, and so on?

Because two OSs make PHBs heads' spin already? (3, Interesting)

Kjella (173770) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834798)

Sure, there's Windows and Solaris and AIX and FreeBSD and NetBSD and OpenBSD and OS X and Linux, at least.

If you look at current history, they normally expect that different OS systems do not play that well together - and normally, they'd be right. Windows + Linux already sounds fishy to them, but something even more obscure than Linux? Sounds like a patchwork of problems to them.

Linux is starting to have large industry backing, with giants like IBM. What does *BSD have? Sure, Apple took it for OS X, but do they provide any *business* backing to *BSD? No. Without wanting to join the "BSD is dying trolls", Linux is racing ahead while BSD isn't developing at nearly the same pace, because with mindshare comes users and developers.

Linux is being promised to be the one solution on everything from embedded devices to supercomputers, and with time even the desktop. This study is one of many to see "where" this is true, not "if", as the submitter said. Even if BSD could win such a comparison, it wouldn't have anywhere near the news value or interest. "Linux: Now also good for your servers" does a lot more than "BSD does good in server study".

Kjella

Re:What I don't understand (2, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834803)

Well, being the 'new darling' that it is, is gets a lot of attention. It also gets a lot of support and development, however, so it's not vapourware like a lot of other "new hotness" IT developments are. Comparing it to other POSIX OSes, it's development might be younger, but its license ensures that a developer's contribution remains free to everyone until it's replaced by something better, so from a developer perspective I can understand developing for Linux over BSD.

Linux has also, from my perspective, just felt more 'right' than BSD has. Take the default text console on FreeBSD. It just feels clunky, like it isn't handling all of the display formatting right. I've never felt that way about Linux's console. It's a small thing, and a thing that most people don't even deal with anymore, but for those of us who have worked with both locally without a GUI, it stands out. Also, for GUI itself, Linux with X has felt, again to me, to be more responsive than FreeBSD with X. Maybe I didn't do something right in FreeBSD, but with my knowledge at the time, Linux's working properly with less hassle made me a believer. Even the kernel stuff for Linux feels more geared to the person working with it, since there are multiple ways to go about defining what one wants in and not, and it feels intuitive. Granted, most advanced users only replace a kernel when it's actually necessary, it still feels better.

I don't say that BSD is bad, but I'm just more accustomed to Linux, as a lot of people that I know are.

compatibility (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834590)

will still be an issue in my eye.. once our propritary software will run on linux.. then we'll think about switching.. for now Windows 2000 will do the trick..

Linux is teh sukc (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834594)

ertyert ert retbgfdsg ert sdgdfg

TCO vs ROI (3, Insightful)

manual_overide (134872) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834595)

even if MS's linux myths page was correct about linux having a greater TCO, business types don't care that much about the initial cost. That's why RH can get away with charging 10K for a multiprocessor licence. Businesses will buy it if it will earn them money in the long run. Of course it really helps if there is a low TCO because that will make your ROI go up.

the linux myths page focuses solely on TCO. Someone should set up a high profile windows myths page that focuses on ROI. It'd be funny if it were full of FUD about windows, but better if it were actually truthfull. Get the PHB's out there to tell the IT guy, "i want one of those lunix boxes on my computers"

Re: TCO vs ROI (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834665)


> even if MS's linux myths page was correct about linux having a greater TCO, business types don't care that much about the initial cost.

Sometimes initial cost really does matter. For some businesses in some business cycles, getting your manager to sign off on something as small as the purchase of a single PC can be worse than getting your teeth drilled, no matter how badly your group needs the PC to get your work done. If you can take that "outgrown" secretarial PC and load it down with free software, you've got a server or developer's workstation that you simply couldn't get otherwise.

Re: TCO vs ROI (2, Insightful)

manual_overide (134872) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834747)

yes, but the secretary's workstation has an almost zero ROI. getting a new pc to let the secretary surf the interweb and play solitaire is usually not top priority for managers. having servers that stay up all the time usually is. esp. if your servers ARE the business.

like we have a product that customers run on our servers via a citrix client. If those servers go down, that's money down the drain. But if they stay up, that's money in the bank. Which is why getting a PHB to sign for a new server is much easier than getting them to sign for a new development machine for me.

ROI is everything.

Re: TCO vs ROI (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834829)


> yes, but the secretary's workstation has an almost zero ROI. getting a new pc to let the secretary surf the interweb and play solitaire is usually not top priority for managers. having servers that stay up all the time usually is. esp. if your servers ARE the business.

Your managers must be more rational than any I've ever had. In my experience the secretary gets a new status-symbol PC every year, if only to stop the nagging. But getting stuff you actually need for doing your work requires jumping through all manner of hoops, and even then more likely results in a 'no' or some delay tactic than in an authorizing signature.

Maybe I've just worked a the wrong kind of places. But such places do exist, and for them the up-front price of Linux is a godsend.

Bwhahahhaha! (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834598)

"There were a lot of costs I didn't expect-- hidden migration costs," says Cedars-Sinai's Duncan. During the migration from NT to Linux, his staff insisted that because they had been running RAID disk mirroring and striping on NT they should buy SCSI RAID controllers for the Linux servers. "It was like $1,000 per box extra that I hadn't planned on."

This is what Linux does for you folks.

It comes prepackaged with inexperienced, green "sysadmins" who don't know their ass from a hole in the ground.

Too bad they decided to hire a bunch of kids instead of *NIX admins who would have known the correct answer to this problem. Oh well, I'm sure getting burned for $1,000 per box will only encourage further deployments.

Re:Bwhahahhaha! (1)

Bun (34387) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834789)

No joke. It's like they never heard of software RAID.

wHy is it always cost. (1)

Lussarn (105276) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834606)

I think it's kind of sad that all that matter is money. Personally I'm not running Linux because it's beer free. I'm running it because speech free. I'm taking some of those ideas into the company I work for too. You can't put a pricetag on everything.

Re:wHy is it always cost. (1)

ErikZ (55491) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834657)

"You can't put a pricetag on everything."

Is that a bet? I'd like to see you come up with something that you can't put a price on.

Re:wHy is it always cost. (1)

Timesprout (579035) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834761)

I'd like to see you come up with something that you can't put a price on.

SCO Linux License: $699

SCO Legal Fees for IBM Lawsuit: $5,000,000

Watching SCO getting raped in court by IBM's Lawyers: Priceless

Re:wHy is it always cost. (1)

N4DMX (614024) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834677)

Unfortunately, the recent bombardment of lawsuits in the world of technology makes me think that money is indeed all that matters. I hope your company accepts those ideas you are bringing forth. Freedom just ain't what it used to be.

Re:wHy is it always cost. (1)

Rumagent (86695) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834728)

Because business is about making money and thus everything in business will ultimately be wearing a pricetag.

The fact that you find this frustrating, just goes to show that you haven't turned into a soulless suit yet - so rejoice;)

Remote management w/ SSH. (5, Informative)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834610)


> One of the big wins for Linux was in the area of remote administration. Specifically noted was ssh.

I admin ~25 machines remotely, most of them in a room that I don't even have access to without special arrangements. With SSH I can do that without ever having to make those arrangements, except in the case of a major upgrade or a hardware failure.

You can write scripts that will take a shell command as an argument and then step through all your machines executing it on each in turn, greatly simplifying remote management.

You can also use pipes and redirects to channel information between processes on the remote machine and your local machine, e.g. -

ssh remotehost cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep flags > temp.txt
will put the flags in temp.text on your local machine, but -
ssh remotehost "cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep flags > temp.txt"
will put it on the remote machine instead.

Or, if you want to do all the work on the remote machine and only redirect the output to your local machine, use -
ssh remotehost "cat /proc/cpuinfo | grep flags" > temp.txt
and the grep will actually execute on remotehost.

The example is trivial, but you can do some powerful sysadmin stuff that way. However, there are a few gottchas: a few services crap out if you try to restart them with -
ssh remotehost service xyz restart
so you do have to be careful about some things. (Sure wish someone would figure out what causes that and fix it!)

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (3, Informative)

amcnabb (682951) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834659)

You mentioned how some things fail when you do

ssh remotehost service xyz restart

Be aware that some programs (such as ping) will die if they don't have a terminal to input from/output to. One handy thing you can do is to run the following:

ssh -t remotehost command

which will allocate a pseudo-terminal. I can't promise it will work for your situation, but I've found that it has solved similar problems for me.

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834670)

Why the hell did you post a mini SSH, grep and cat tutorial?

because it's +1 informative (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834729)

cat | grep == sure sign of a noob (1)

SweetAndSourJesus (555410) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834745)

grep [pattern] [somefile]

Re:cat | grep == sure sign of a noob (1)

greenrd (47933) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834827)

The /proc filesystem on Linux 2.4.x (and earlier, I assume) is a bit broken. All file sizes are reported as 0, which breaks high-level input routines in glibc, and at least some drivers don't handle random access reads well. grep may work OK, but in general it's safest to always use cat to read from procfs.

Re: cat | grep == sure sign of a noob (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834848)


> grep [pattern] [somefile]

Doesn't work very well for the example though, does it.

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (1)

Flunitrazepam (664690) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834771)

Or you could just use Windows and Terminal Services, point and click, and not have to learn any of this 's.s.h.' nonsense!

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834802)

Sadly, it costs a lot of money to exercise free speech in America.


Ugh. It costs you nothing to stand on your street corner and exercise your free speech. If the message is not important enough for you to start there, then you deserve nothing more for letting your inconveniences rule you. You're too greedy too soon and probably have nothing to say anyway.

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (3, Informative)

Quixote (154172) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834813)

One word: screen [gnu.org]

It is such a handy utility. I can fire off a long job, and detach the screen; go home and reattach to it, to see how its going; and then come back to work and continue. It's so beautiful. <sniff>

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (1)

calidoscope (312571) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834840)

The biggest benefit of replacing RISC boxes with Linux is the ability to run on generic PeeCee hardware. The biggest problem with replacing RISC boxes with Linux is putting up with the fact that PeeCee's (including x86 servers) are derived from something designed to be a single user computer.

Remote management with Linux on a typical PeeCee is kind of wimpy compared to Sun box with Lights Out Management (LOM). Provided that you have a terminal server in your server room, it's possible to reboot the machine, load a new OS, etc remotely.

Re:Remote management w/ SSH. (1)

David Gerard (12369) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834889)

I administer Solaris for a living, but the same things apply. My old boss actually got upset at me for solving problems from my desk over the phone, rather than going up to the user's desk (one or five floors away) to do it at their workstation. Eegh ... my new boss is actually smart.

Solid Analysis (4, Interesting)

InnovativeCX (538638) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834621)

I have to admit, this is definitely one of the better write-ups that I have seen on the subject. Most, as the article states, base all decisions on the TCO (amount spent) rather than the ROI, which allows organizations to determine how much they would save in the long run if they were to switch.

Main thrust seems to be that the savings increase with the amount of technical resources converted to Linux systems. Perhaps this could be a deciding factor for many companies and organizations considering taking the plunge.

Favorite Quote:

"Discount retailing's a tight business, and we're wicked cheap," explains Burlington Coat Factory CIO Mike Prince..."Instead of having a superhorse you have a team of horses -- you don't have to have this genetic [RISC] wonder."

-CSA

Since this whole SCO fiasco... (1)

Chicane-UK (455253) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834626)

..i've seen nothing but positive articles discussion the abilities and the future of the Linux operating system. The only negative things I have read were from the Gartner group.. no surprises there though.

When (most definately not an if) SCO are finally trampled, I think either this or next year will be the real boom year for Linux.. commercial interest and vendor support has never been so good.. I can't wait to see where Linux goes! :)

Cost discussion (4, Interesting)

maxmo74 (597969) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834630)

My colleagues and I had several discussions about switching to linux costs during the past years. I am not going to report everything we talked about (especially when we got "hot" and yelled using not very fair terms), but just the essentials. The cost, both for just server or even for workstations, depends a lot upon whether there's at least a professional employed there actively using linux (a geek almost necessarily) and the kind of applications needed to be "ported". In my case, a switch not only would be very expensive (30 workstations using Windows and -gosh- MS Access), but almost impossibile without thinking about an almost complete rewrite of the applications. In many other cases though the switch is not only possibile (email, wordprocessing, spreadsheet) but even very very inexpensive.

Re:Cost discussion (3, Insightful)

TWX (665546) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834891)

The trick on custom stuff, like MS-Access applications and databases, is timing. If your Access solution is getting near no longer working due to age coupled with Microsoft's abandonment of older binaries, you have incentive to rewrite something. Now, are you going to spend $500 for OS and applications per year per computer, and $2000 porting it to a newer version of Access, to keep spending $500 per per year per computer, or are you going to spend $20,000, as an example, rewriting it entirely for a new platform that you'll spend -$0- for per computer per year?

Depending on the number of computers, in your case, 30, if you are a good little Microsoft customer and spending your $500/year, you are paying $15,000 per year, and still paying a developer to update your Access database. So, conversion, after a couple of years, could pay for itself if it's properly done. I'd guess that with 30 computers, you could probably outsource maintenance for when you need support, or on a regular schedule for updating, and not spend as much as you would with Windows. Viruses alone wouldn't be nearly so big a problem.

wicked awesome (1)

holzp (87423) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834637)

"Discount retailing's a tight business, and we're wicked cheap," explains Burlington Coat Factory CIO Mike Prince

I take it that's Burlington, Massachusetts?

Re:wicked awesome (1)

Meowing (241289) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834897)

Burlington NJ actually, but they've got 300 or so stores scattered around the US and Canada.

Hidden Costs vs Opportunities (4, Insightful)

chill (34294) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834639)

"There were a lot of costs I didn't expect-- hidden migration costs," says Cedars-Sinai's Duncan. During the migration from NT to Linux, his staff insisted that because they had been running RAID disk mirroring and striping on NT they should buy SCSI RAID controllers for the Linux servers. "It was like $1,000 per box extra that I hadn't planned on."

That wasn't a hidden cost. Linux could have easily handled RAID disk mirroring and striping without the special controllers.

This was an example of the IT staff knowing they have a much larger than normal project budget and milking it for all it was worth.

Re:Hidden Costs vs Opportunities (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834704)

If you're going to be managing a real company you don't rely on software for mirroring. I would much rather rely on a hardware solution than a unforseen bug in mirroring/raid software and lose all your shit.

You get what you pay for sometimes.

Re:Hidden Costs vs Opportunities (1)

chill (34294) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834863)

If you're going to be managing a real company you don't rely on software for mirroring. I would much rather rely on a hardware solution than a unforseen bug in mirroring/raid software and lose all your shit.

You get what you pay for sometimes.


A matter of opinion. An "unforseen bug" can just as easily show up in the firmware, which is nothing more than software in a chip.

While RAM & batteries on a controller are nice, I've never heard of just the disk subsystem losing power. A full-system battery backed UPS is necessary for the server to begin with.

Other than off-loading processing cycles when rebuilding an array, I've never been convinced of the benefits of hardware RAID over software. I've used both for over 10 years and never had an issue with either.

Re:Hidden Costs vs Opportunities (1)

shokk (187512) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834832)

That or they are familiar with what a crappy solution software RAID can be. Nah, couldn't be that...you didn't think of it! They must be morons.

Re:Hidden Costs vs Opportunities (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834837)

"There were a lot of costs I didn't expect-- hidden migration costs," says Cedars-Sinai's Duncan. During the migration from NT to Linux, his staff insisted that because they had been running RAID disk mirroring and striping on NT they should buy SCSI RAID controllers for the Linux servers. "It was like $1,000 per box extra that I hadn't planned on."

That wasn't a hidden cost. Linux could have easily handled RAID disk mirroring and striping without the special controllers. This was an example of the IT staff knowing they have a much larger than normal project budget and milking it for all it was worth.


Agreed, striping and mirroring are hardly complicated operations. It's a simple round-robin and duplication thing that can be done just as well in software, which I assume is what NT was doing (I don't remember what NT can do, I know Win2k can at least).

If and only if they were doing RAID 5 (not 0,1 or 0+1) in hardware on NT (don't think anything runs that in software), getting the same for the Linux servers would be reasonable. In any other case, it's a waste of money.

Kjella

Re: Hidden Costs vs Opportunities (1)

Black Parrot (19622) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834878)


> This was an example of the IT staff knowing they have a much larger than normal project budget and milking it for all it was worth.

Ye Gods! They spent it on SCSI RAID controllers instead of new chairs???

Isn't "if" and "where" the same thing here? (1)

kaltkalt (620110) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834653)

Ok not to be a nitpicky jackfuck, but isn't "if" and "where" as used in this context (to use linux or not) the same thing? "Where" is referring to what situations/setups make for a proper place to run linux. "If" is just another way of saying that. For example: Where your servers are important to you and you can't afford the downtime associated with microsoft products, linux is for you. OR -- If your servers are important to you and you can't afford the downtime... then linux is for you. Same thing. Even if you take "where" to mean a purely geographical location (e.g. linux is proper in arizona) another way of phrasing that is "if you are in this geographical location then linux is proper."

My point is "where" is no more narrow than "if" when you are talking about linux making sense to run and not making sense to run. Thus going from "if" to "where" means nothing vis a vis the advancement of linux.

Going from "if" to "when" is, however, a statement that does have meaning. Maybe that's what they meant here? Going from if you should run linux to when you should run linux mean eventually, you should be running linux.
/nitpick off

Top Ten Differences Between Democrats and Republic (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834660)

Top Ten Differences Between Democrats and Republicans (from the perspective of a Democrat):

10. Democrats take your money and give it to social programs. Republicans take your money and give it to their friends.

9. Democrats lie about sex. Republicans sex up their lies.

8. Democrats think international cooperation means working with the United Nations. Republicans think international cooperation means working with Exxon/Mobil.

7. Democrats try to save the planet. Republicans try to pave the planet.

6. Democrats are elected. Republicans are selected.

5. Democrats make treaties. Republicans break them.

4. Democrats support a social welfare system. Republicans support a corporate welfare system.

3. Democrats defend the rights of white supremacists. Republicans are the white supremacists.

2. Democrats govern. Republicans rule.

1. Democrats call people who don't believe in the separation of church and state a threat to civil liberties. Republicans call them judicial appointees.

Just wait till MS-Linux is available. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834675)

Finally Linux will be all it can be. It just need improvment from Bill. When MS-Linux is here, you will get 1) DirectX, 2) an intuitive GUI, 3) easy and painless installation, 4) seamless installation of drivers, 5) real apps made by real coding companies.

The best part? The MS-Linux distriubution will be the only one will all this! None of it will be GPLed, so there won't be any hobbyists to muck up Microsoft's good coding!

All Linux needs is MicroSoft. And it will come. And there's nothing anyone can do about it.

Linux's Share of Server Market grew by 40% (2, Informative)

reporter (666905) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834717)

The key quote in the Inforworld article is the following.

The benefit of replacing expensive RISC processor-based Unix hardware with commodity Intel boxes is one of the biggest factors driving Linux adoption

Linux servers and workstations have rapidly increased their share of the market at the expense of Sun Microsystems. According to "IBM steals server sales from Sun [com.com] ", the sales of Sun servers running Solaris dropped by a whopping 19% from 2nd quarter of 2002 to 2nd quarter of 2003. Yet, the sales of Linux servers increased by a sizeable 40%.

The bell tolls. It tolls ominously for Sun.

... from the desk of the reporter [geocities.com]

Re:Linux's Share of Server Market grew by 40% (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834750)

Mods make note of this person's posting history and even reusing his own tagline which can be found here [slashdot.org] . He is a blatant anti-Sun troll who also enjoys ripping on Asia.

the sales of Sun servers running Solaris dropped by a whopping 19% from 2nd quarter of 2002 to 2nd quarter of 2003. Yet, the sales of Linux servers increased by a sizeable 40%.

Ahhh, sweet sweet manipulation. Keep in mind you are talking about revenue not number of servers. Maybe because the price of Sun's servers have fallen drastically?

Oh yes, and you never replied to my reply of your post linked above. Feel free to reply in this thread.

ATTENTION MODS! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834801)

Please judge articles by whether they contain useful information and insight. Articles that contain ad hominem attacks like this personal attack [slashdot.org] should be modded down. Make a note of the IP address producing the personal attack. You will see a pattern.

Articles like the parent contain useful information and deserve to be modded up.

Re:ATTENTION MODS! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834853)

hahahaha!

Get a dictionary and find out what "ad hominem" means and quit responding to your own posts.

No Comprende (3, Funny)

DrJimbo (594231) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834720)

Microsoft bundles a lot of stuff into Windows, into SQL Server, into the .Net framework ? if you?re looking to build a generic app and deploy it at an all-in price point, Windows is going to win hands down because you get so much bundled in.

Windows software is cheaper because it has so much bundled in???

It sounds like the logic used I Love Lucy where she loses money on each item sold but plans to make up for it by increasing the number of sales.

Security (3, Informative)

wmaker (701707) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834726)

I notice nobody has mentioned security... What about the fact that linux security is a lot easier to matain remotely than Microsoft. What are you supposed to do if some security flaw is released for microsoft and you're at home. You can't just run PC Anywhere... Plus, uptime is so much better on linux.

Include BSA raid in TCO for Windows (5, Insightful)

ODBOL (197239) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834732)

I haven't yet seen a TCO study that includes the risk of a BSA audit in a Windows shop. The TCO for running Windows should include the cost of insurance against the disruption of a BSA audit and the penalties paid for apparently unlicensed software.

SSH or VNC for Windows management (1)

Darth_Burrito (227272) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834740)

One of the big wins for Linux was in the area of remote administration. Specifically noted was ssh.

Okay, I recently came to be in charge of a small office with maybe 20 machines with different hardware and different versions of Windows. Anyways, I was wondering if anyone has had any success or experience managing a group of Windows machines using the open ssh server or perhaps VNC. I'm mostly looking for more efficient means of patching than walking around from machine to machine after hours. While about half of the systems are 2000 or better, SUS isn't an option until I can convince people to get me my 2000 server.

Re:SSH or VNC for Windows management (1)

gvc (167165) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834824)

I manage my relatives' computer systems with a combination of VNC and ssh.

The problem with VNC is that it grabs the console in Windows, so if the user happens to be on the computer, he or she is interrupted. On the other hand, he or she can see what you are doing so it is good for tutorials.

ssh is wonderful for background copying, checking things out, and so on. Unfortunately a lot of Windows apps (in particular installation wizards) want to grab the console so even if you start them through ssh they are useless unless you sign on with VNC to point and click.

Whenever I set up a machine that I'm to manage, I install VNC as a service, and also cywin/sshd as a service, and I have enough hooks to be able to do most anything. I wouldn't be without either.

One word of warning: Windows XP "fast user switching" and VNC don't get along. If more than one user is on, you see a black screen on VNC. Solution: use ssh to invoke "shutdown -r -force".

Stupid assumptions (3, Insightful)

Bun (34387) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834754)

[said]Martin Taylor, Microsoft's general manager of platform strategy . "One of the issues that causes people to not take a full picture on [Linux costs] is they download something for free and they invest time to get it where they want it. They don't fully account for the time and effort it took to even get their model scenario up and running."
Really? And you would have your customers set up an enterprise system WITHOUT evaluating it to the point where they understand it and are fully prepared to use it properly?

Jackass.

Re:Stupid assumptions (2, Insightful)

Bert Altenburg (699926) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834844)

I guess Mr Taylor abhors MSCE certification as well. Talking about a waste of time.

Re:Stupid assumptions (1)

shokk (187512) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834890)

PC manufacturers are guilty of perpetuating monopoly abuse by M$ until they also include a partition with Linux/Unix pre


What a ridiculous idea. You expect everything in life to follow political equal-time laws? You'd better start including every other OS ever written on the planet, because otherwise you'd be leaving them out of the picture and possibly stifling their overnight success. I would never saddle Joe sixpack with something like Linux...he wants to get online quickly and get to his email and chat with family members, not pull his hair out over which conf file he needs to edit. Funny how you people rail against corporate welfare and here you are expecting every company out there to subsidize your pet web browser or operating system. What crap.


Our experiance on switching to linux. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834804)

I am the manager for a small (4 employee) art studio. We do graphic design for local businesses in our area. One month ago, We desided to upgrade our aging PowerMacs (68k editions) that ran PhotoShop 3.5 to Debian Linux machines that ran on 3 Ghz dual XEON machines. It costed us $3000 (725 for each computer, $100 for the boxed version of Debian 3.1). After hearing that Gimp 1.3.17 had finally implemented the elusive CMYK support and had a decent GUI at last we couldn't resist the switch!

It installled well, and we loved it, until we actually did some real work with it. We watched how it struggled for 20 minutes applying a guassian blur on a 4096x4096 tif file. On the old Macs, the same oepration would take 2 minutes, if that.

We also found out that linux didn't support our Epson Stylus 5000 Pro printer, and we had to set up one of the old macs a print server. We soon got bored of the delays and we have now ordered 4 Powermac Dual 2Ghz G5 machines, along 4 licences for Photoshop 9.0, which should arive in mid September. It costed us $13,000, but it will soon pay off in the form of reduced wait for images to be processed (therefore less wages to pay).

We would like to moved to linux, but w esold the XEON machines to a beowulf cluster owned by some eccentric guy for $2000. When linux speeds up to acceptable levels, and supports Professional hardware, we will consider it again in a few years.

Obvious troll (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 11 years ago | (#6834865)

"same oepration would take 2 minutes, if that"

Notice any resemblance to other trolls [slashdot.org] ?

Re:Our experiance on switching to linux. (2, Interesting)

sloanster (213766) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834867)

Some lame ass anonymous coward wrote: "When linux speeds up to acceptable levels, and supports Professional hardware, we will consider it again in a few years."

I smell a troll...

Totally clueless, probably not real. Linux runs circles around OS X performance wise. What the troll was complaining about (if it was actually an actual real life occurrence) was the performance of the gimp vs photoshop on a certain operation.

I'm skeptical, and would love to see a benchmark of common graphics operations on gimp/linux vs photoshop/osx and photoshop/windoze.

Who knows, perhaps the gimp is doing some things in a non-optimal fashion. If so, the comparison would cause the gimp crew to step up and make it right.

Spoken like a consultant (1)

PCM2 (4486) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834815)

Also of note is the shift in calculating cost from TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) as has been calculated in the past, to ROI (Return on Investment)
And how, might I ask, is one expected to calculate the return on an investment of you haven't yet calculated its total cost? Man, consulting must be a great living.

"virtually virus-free" (4, Insightful)

foyle (467523) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834826)

After the MSBlaster worm and SoBig virus activity of the last few weeks, you'd think that there'd be a little more than a passing reference on page 3 of the article saying that Linux is "virtually virus-free".

I'll bet that none of these expensive studies ever include the cost of cleaning up after the virus/worm of the week that comes with running Microsoft NT/2000/XP. Having everyone in your company having 2 or 3 days a year when their desktop/laptop/server/whatever is unavailable because of cleanup activity should have a definite negative impact on TCO or ROI.

Yet one more reason to use Linux, *BSD or OS X.

Anyone considers leaving Linux ? (1, Interesting)

Snefru2 (663397) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834883)

TCO and ROI are important measures if you consider switching from a certain system to another one. Many people are thinking of switching to Linux and use the above measures. I do not know of organizations thinking of switching from Linux to OSF, Windows NT or whatever OS other than Linux. I think this is an important fact if you consider switching to Linux, a more important fact than economical measures like TCO or ROI published every now and then.

Okaaay... (1)

TexVex (669445) | more than 11 years ago | (#6834888)

"When you're building apps," notes Forrester's Schadler, "it's not a Windows versus Linux decision. It's a Java-on-Linux versus Windows decision. Microsoft bundles a lot of stuff into Windows, into SQL Server, into the .Net framework -- if you're looking to build a generic app and deploy it at an all-in price point, Windows is going to win hands down because you get so much bundled in."
Is it just me, or is Schadler smoking crack?
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