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169 comments

What about Windows? (5, Insightful)

MarkByers (770551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092687)

They are probably embracing Windows faster than ever too.

Re:What about Windows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092696)

Apple, on the other hand, is right out.

Re:What about Windows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092962)

Indians are a bit conservative, and don't support open homosexuality. So you really shouldn't be surprised that Apple isn't making any headway.

Re:What about Windows? (1, Interesting)

MadUndergrad (950779) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092704)

That's probably true. I'm sure general computer use is growing so fast that they're embracing software left and right. The real question is how much market share each respective OS has.

Re:What about Windows? (1)

thePig (964303) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092743)

But this is a golden oppurtunity for Linux, I beleieve.
Since in India, automation is just coming up for most systems, linux has an
advantage (ok, rather less disadvantage) compared to that of developed countries,
wherein the systems were all under development even before very stable Linux
systems were a reality.

Now we can see how well Linux can match up with its greatest rival.

Re:What about Windows? (2, Informative)

Lost my religion (714301) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092813)

I am sure that you are right in a way - with computers becoming more accessible, Windows usage will also go up. However, I believe that Linux has the faster growth rate - just because it is free (as in beer).

To pull a statistic out of thin air, more than 95% desktops in the home user market use pirated versions of Windows. With the average incomes, it is simply not possible to buy software that is priced in USD. Windows costs more than what an average engineer makes in a month. The more educated folks are trying to move away from piracy, and Linux offers them a good option. Also, it being free (as in speech) gives people a reason to contribute to it.

I am glad that major corporations are moving to Linux - it just means better software for everyone as the benefits trickle down.

Re:What about Windows? (1)

distilledprodigy (946341) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092900)

99% of people hate people who pull statistics out of thin air to create an argument.

Re:What about Windows? (2, Funny)

Zebidiah (573736) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092923)

I actually like this joke 0.6745% of the time

Re:What about Windows? (1)

Billhead (842510) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092910)

Do you have anything to back that number up?

Re:What about Windows? (2)

Disavian (611780) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093341)

I agree that windows costs more than an engineer makes in a month. If you want to legitimately buy Windows XP, MS Office, and MS Visual Studio Architect (say, you want to be a programmer for windows), it'll set you back more than I think is worth it.

So their choices are to starve and buy those, pirate them, or use linux. The latter two just need an okay internet connection and a bittorrent client.

I don't doubt that there's a lot of piracy in developing countries. That's probably one reason why MS is making Vista Basic. Sell it to China, and at least you'll be making a buck off of them before they run off and pirate Vista Ultimate (now with MS Kitchen Sink!).

Re:What about Windows? (1, Informative)

woobieman29 (593880) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093714)

95% eh? WRONG.

Sure there are a large number of pirated copies, but it's nowhere near 95%. Most likely the largest portion of Windows users are running whatever came installed on their Dell/Gateway/HP machine.

That's the problem with pulling statistics "out of thin air" - you run the risk of making a really silly statement.

Re:What about Windows? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092844)

If you read the article, the operative word was migrate. The company discussed already had a network and switched from an unspecified OS to RedHat. So, what about Windows?

Re:What about Windows? (4, Informative)

arvindn (542080) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093037)

Not true. Speaking from first hand experience in both countries, linux usage in India is much higher than in America both in the home and office. There have been a number of genuine large-scale Windows-to-linux switches, as opposed to just talking about it or migrating a dozen servers in a corner somewhere. The average bank clerk (my mom included :-) is actually using linux terminals on a day-to-day basis.

Re:What about Windows? (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093251)

They are probably embracing Windows faster than ever too.

Not if they are paying for it... The problem is Microsoft more or less took care of the casual 'easy' piracy with the Software Activation / hardware fingerprinting they started with WinXP and later OS. Yes, there are cracks out there, but for the most part Microsoft is finally making it darn inconvenient to use a bootleg copy of their kit.

I spent a few months in India last year and probably will spend another couple this year. Anything produced domestically was dirt cheap, but imports were more or less the same as what I was seeing in the US. Difference was the wages paid to the developers was shockingly low (as was the cost of living). I was thinking I could get an ipod for cheap - but they were more than what I could get it for in the States! Licensing costs for most US or European software, and this includes Windows, would be a sizable portion of expenditures for a dev shop if they are legit. I'm not saying they would pay for RHEL or SLES either, but with Linux you don't have the activation issues.

Now if they offered a copy of Windows that was priced to match what most software folks would pay in rupees, I would be the first to try to buy an import version. (Already see this in games) English is the national language after all...

More indians taking american jobs (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092695)

Between outsourcing and H1B visas There is not much of a chance left for the average american IT worker against this. Get out there and support legislation that will help your position and YOUR COUNTRY!!

Re:More indians taking american jobs (2, Interesting)

grasshoppa (657393) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092764)

Screw that, if another country is more efficient handling our crap jobs ( and let's face it, the programing jobs that are getting exported are the crap jobs ), then by all means let's let them.

Re:More indians taking american jobs (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092779)

it's all about efficiency. I wouldn't characterize a job as "crap" or "notcrap". Germans create a lot of the world's best MRI machines, Japanese people create high quality ink and photocopying machines. Indians happen to create application software efficiently. These are not "crap" jobs, these are jobs that can be done elsewhere more efficiently. Do we see Indians creating skyscrapers, or becoming the world's best lawyers? No, that is something that Americans have the highest efficiency.

relax, don't get emotional, try to figure out what your value add is and work towards those jobs.

Re:More indians taking american jobs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093209)

You obviously haven't seen any indian source code...

Re:More indians taking american jobs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092794)

Screw that, if another country is more efficient handling our crap jobs ... then by all means let's let them.

You can only employ that logic for so long until employment figures begin to drop. When you're at 30% unemployment you'll want those jobs back, only by then you'll have lost your competetive edge.

Re:More indians taking american jobs (1, Insightful)

mspohr (589790) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092877)

India is much more efficient at programming (and many other tech jobs)... perhaps one reason is that they use Linux and don't have to deal with Windoze.

Re:More indians taking american jobs (1)

(H)elix1 (231155) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093365)

India is much more efficient at programming (and many other tech jobs)... perhaps one reason is that they use Linux and don't have to deal with Windoze.

The reason people were all hot and bothered to farm out the development costs to India is the manpower cost much less. In the New Delhi area, a seasoned Java developer would make about $20 a day. If I can write up a spec in the US or UK and have someone implement it for pennies on the dollar (or sterling), that may we worth the bother of outsourcing it.

The irony is as the development shops demand a larger chunk of the pie, people outsourcing start to look elsewhere as the implementation stops being such a good deal. Even in India, some of the cities in the Southern portion of the country are the new 'Seattle'. So now we see the new 'cheap' shops springing up in other locations. Problem is, China and some of the Eastern European countries are pitching cheap labor as well.

It is not that India is smarter, more efficient, or better at 'grunt work' coding - they just have a much lower cost of living. When they ship the same code in the same time as someone who's cost of living is several orders of magnitude higher it figures the cost to the requestor should be less while the folks that make it should have better margins. I would not sell you my weekend for $200, but others in the world would jump on that.

Re:More indians taking american jobs (2, Insightful)

BeanThere (28381) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093004)

Nice to decide that *someone else's job* is crappy and they *they* shouldn't mind losing it ... so long as it's not your job, right?

(I agree with you on the efficiency point though.)

Re:More indians taking american jobs (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093014)

This sounds more like one of those "Jobs that Americans won't do" arguments, that dosn't really exist. Every year the news has a another short disparaging report about how we are graduating less and less science, math, technology and engineering majors. And the reason always is that there aren't any jobs. Anerican companies need to realize that they get what they pay for, and once employment of american technology workers picks up technology education will too. We are at a very dangerous crossroads right now, one of the richest countries with a slipping education average. Other countries instead of trying to make what they can for themselves (just like americans did around the industrial revolution), are taking our slice of the pie. Stealing instead of making their own.

Insourcing is becoming big (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092820)

I could care less about outsourcing. H1/L1's are a total scam, and horribly exploited, but I digress.

I'm starting to see a lot more of projects coming back to Silicon Valley from India. In fact, I just turned one down. The manager in charge sent off the embedded Linux project to India, they screwed it up (after 3 months, they STILL couldn't get a "hello world" program to work). Then he expected me to come in at the last minute and save his sorry ass.

Sorry, I can pick and choose what projects I want. I'll take the easier ones, where I'm assured of making a knowledgeable manager happy.

But anyway, the vast majority of projects and people over there are clueless. The truly good people tend to make it to the U.S. on at least a green card status. IMHO, this is more a result of the boom there than anything else; and is similar to what happened in the U.S. during the dot-com boom (when any idiot could call themselves a webmaster, and many did).

I did that in 2000 and again in 2004. (0, Offtopic)

Naruki (601680) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092917)

It's called "Don't vote Republican". Sadly, what with the stupidity of almost half the voters and the voting fraud that tipped the balance, my efforts were in vain.

Using is one thing (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092706)


contributing is something else, are these (m|b)illion dollar companies using Linux writing/contributing any code ?

Re:Using is one thing (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092722)

Existence of the market will incite the software companies to contribute. You don't really expect an insurance company to work on the operating system, do you?

I am standing beside myself with joy! (0, Flamebait)

ThreeE (786934) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092725)

This is true -- I saw the guy at stop'n go using ubuntu!

Re:I am standing beside myself with joy! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093058)

Parent is a racist troll scumbag. He also has a small cock, which is why he acts so tough on the internet.

Re:I am standing beside myself with joy! (1)

the_mushroom_king (708305) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093512)

Thank you, come again!

Non-trivial? (-1)

rolfwind (528248) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092737)

From the summary: "non-trivial?"

What is happening to our language with retarded constructs such as this? What happened to the word "important?"

Re:Non-trivial? (1)

LnxAddct (679316) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092752)

It's called evolution and its something that non-dead languages should do to survive (it's a good thing).
Regards,
Steve

Re:Non-trivial? (1)

Saven Marek (739395) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092905)

> It's called evolution and its something that non-dead
> languages should do to survive (it's a good thing).

I'll remember to use that excuse too next time a slashdotter complains when someone in the media refers to breaking into a computer system and stealing data as "hacking".

Re:Non-trivial? (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093074)

No, evolution is a mail client from Novell, which provides a semblance of support for Microsoft Exchange-based Linux clients.

Or did you mean something else?

It's both non-trivial and important. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092776)

They describe two different things. The use of 'non-trivial' is obviously in reference to the massive size of this deal. Nearly 20% of 1 billion people will be affected by this. We're talking about 20 cities with the population of New York, to put it in terms you may better understand.

The word 'important' would not suffice when describing the size of the deal. A deal between even just two participants (say Micro Soft and IBM) can end up being very 'important'.

So yes, this deal is 'important', but it is also well described as 'non-trivial', due to the extensive impact this will have on the people of India, and the open source community. This is an instance of very accurate and concise usage, contrary to your beliefs.

Re:Non-trivial? (1)

ctid (449118) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092786)

I think that "non-trivial" is fine if the context is that somebody might otherwise call the news "trivial". It addresses the perception that some random Indian company adopting Linux doesn't mean that much in the grand scheme of things. To say that this conversion to Linux is "important" would miss some connotations of this area of debate. I feel that "important" would imply that everyone would agree that it is important; the implication here is that the author is trying to convince people that this is important.

All IMHO of course.

Re:Non-trivial? (1)

atari2600 (545988) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092797)

Read this [slashdot.org] as to why this is a big deal and non-trivial is a dumb term to use.

The idiot who posted that... (1)

Naruki (601680) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092973)

Oh, sorry, it was you. So when you posted that, you failed to explain even the tiniest hint about why "non-trivial" is a bad word. Just asserting that it's bad does not equal proving it.

Based on your logic (that non-trivial is stupid simply because important is a similar word), explain why we have "trivial" and "unimportant" and which of those two you declare to be obviously retarded.

While you're at it, go ahead and explain the pruning of these terms, too:
bootless, bush-league, diddly, dinky, dispensable, disposable, entry level, exiguous, expendable, extraneous, foolish, frivolous, immaterial, inappreciable, inconsequent, inconsequential, inconsiderable, ineffective, ineffectual, inessential, insignificant, insufficient, irrelative, irrelevant, lesser, lightweight, little, low-ranking, meager, meaningless, measly, Mickey Mouse, minim, minimal, minor, minor-league, minuscule, minute, needless, negligible, niggling, nonessential, nonserious, not germane, nothing, nugatory, otiose, paltry, peripheral, petty, picayune, piddling, pointless, profitless, puny, purportless, secondary, senseless, shallow, silly, slight, small, small potatoes, small-fry, small-time, superficial, superfluous, trifling, two bit, unnecessary, unneeded, unproductive, unprofitable, unprofound, unsubstantial, useless, vain, valueless, and worthless.

KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092757)

As an Indian, I am quite surprised that they went with an offering from Red Hat. Red Hat has long been known to support GNOME as their main desktop. However, KDE is the leader when it comes to supporting the popular Indic languages like Urdu, Tamil, Hindi, and Bengali.

I myself use the Tamil support of KDE, and have long found it superior to that of GNOME (even for recent releases). More of the core KDE applications have translations available, and most of are a higher quality than those of GNOME. That is not to say that GNOME is unable to support those languages; that is clearly not the case! The fact remains, however, that KDE is the better option at this time when it comes to displaying Indic scripts, and offering Indic translations.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (-1, Troll)

MichaelSmith (789609) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092789)

As an Indian, I am quite surprised that they went with an offering from Red Hat.

If you wanted to make more than an anti RH flame you might have suggested a distro which better suits your requirements.

BTW you can install KDE on redhat. Most of the redhat users I know use KDE.

I myself use the Tamil support of KDE, and have long found it superior to that of GNOME (even for recent releases).

I am surprised that you bothered to try gnome at all. Why do all this research when KDE works so well?

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

atari2600 (545988) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092817)

If you wanted to make more than an anti RH flame you might have suggested a distro which better suits your requirements.

The irony here is if you are accusing that poster of flaming, you are sounding like an RH fanboy here.

BTW you can install KDE on redhat. Most of the redhat users I know use KDE.

You mean Redhat-KDE which sucks in feel unless you want to compile and install KDE separately and not from the installation medium. How many redhat users do you know use KDE? 3? 5? 10? 20? 100? Stop trying to sound so self-important

I am surprised that you bothered to try gnome at all. Why do all this research when KDE works so well?

Curiosity? I used to be a big-time KDE user and i switched to Gnome because i didn't like Redhat KDEs feel. I now use KDE on my SuSE laptop and Gnome on my RHEL4 desktop. To each his/her own. Nothing surprising here.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092942)

I work for one of the five largest companies in the world. Most of our technical users have RHEL with KDE as a desktop. This is only a small (~2000) group of employees though.

Many thanks to the KDE developers! (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092833)

I have found Ubuntu to work best. I initially tried GNOME because that was the default desktop. It worked well, but my coworkers suggested I install and try KDE for a better experience. They were right. I did find the Tamil translations of KDE to be of a higher quality, and more widespread.

One problem I recall involved Galeon. It has decent support for Tamil, but for some of the configuration dialogs there was a mix of English and Tamil translations, and sometimes the Tamil translation would be missing outright! Now, I am thankful that I also understand English quite well, so I was able to switch over and finish the configuration that way.

Other core GNOME applications (like the Users & Groups utility, for instance) do not even have Tamil translations. It is unsuitable for purely Tamil-speaking users to deal with such translations!

I have not had any similar problems with KDE. The translations are always complete, and I think they are very well done. My many thanks to all who have provided such excellent work!

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

kimvette (919543) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092887)

I am surprised that you bothered to try gnome at all. Why do all this research when KDE works so well?


My distribution of choice is SuSE, because the time from booting from the install disc to having a full functional environment with everything we need is the quickest. The primary environment we use is KDE, but we keep Gnome installed alongside and any time anyone logs in they can choose whatever desktop they wish (disk space is cheap!).

However, every few months I reevaluate distributions and environments. The fact that KDE seems to be better today doesn't mean that the next Gnome release won't be superior for our needs. And, as more releases of Mandriva, Ubuntu, Fedora, and others come out, if they somehow leapfrog ahead in an area which is important, doesn't it make sense to not wear fanboy blinders?

That statement reminds me of how (some) Apple users always think that Apple can do no wrong, and no matter how good or how bad a particular Apple product is, it's better than anything else simply because it carries the Apple brand. (I'm not attacking Apple here, I just know people who love anything Apple comes out with regardless of quality, just because it's Apple, and freely admit it). Now Apple has some damn fine products, but they've also had some duds over the years) but because Apple has worked so well for someone up to now, does that mutually exclude the possibility that someone, somewhere, someday might offer a better product?

Examine the problem, examine possible solutions, and then arrive at your decision. In six months, if you encounter a similar problem, the best choice may not be the same one you settled on for that problem today. Perhaps with today's solution you had to make some compromises or put a little more work in terms of spending many hours to tweak some code, but six months from now there may be two additional options, one of which might be plug&play?

In six months KDE might suck, and our Indian friend here might be inclined to go with a Gnome-heavy distribution. Right now KDE seems to be a better option for him. What of it? Just as you have your opinion that Gnome is the best thing since sliced bread, he finds KDE to be superior. Personally, I'm inclined to agree with his choice, but for different reasons; the over-simplification of Gnome.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

TeleoMan (529859) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092829)

aaaa

Which has better Urdu support -- vi or Emacs? (2, Funny)

BerntB (584621) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092832)

OK, you think KDE is better than Gnome?

But what is better for Hindi and Urdu -- Vi or Emacs?

Sigh... but I guess a bit of flame war is a good change of pace in this dull story about Linux deployment in a traditional Windows markets.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (4, Interesting)

MarkByers (770551) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092916)

KDE is the leader when it comes to supporting the popular Indic languages like Urdu, Tamil, Hindi, and Bengali.

If you could link to some statistics it might be interesting to see.

According to Gnome's website [gnome.org] .

Gnome v2.14

Hindi: 94.10% complete.
Tamil: 66.64% complete.
Benglai: 80.33% complete.

According to the KDE's website [kde.org] :

Kde stable:

Hindi: 57.06% complete.
Tamil: 66.13% complete.
Bengali: 23.93% complete.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092960)

Conclusion: KDE people work, and let their websites slip. Gnome people update their websites, but don't do the work.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (3, Interesting)

archen (447353) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093070)

I'm not sure how you neccesarily arrive at that conclusion. Although I agree that the statistcs don't really seem to mean much. If you dig deeper into the "packages" translated, kde has WAAAY more applications to translate then what are considered part of gnome base and gnome desktop.

Why is Gnome being translated into Old English anyway?

Your statistics are misleading. (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093439)

The problem with your statistics is that they're measuring very different things. Recall that GNOME and KDE are structured quite differently. KDE is a far tighter distribution system than GNOME.

Those statistics are for the very core of GNOME: GTK+, GLib, GDK, the GNOME desktop and taskbar, Metacity, and applications like gnome-terminal. It does not take into account GAIM, for instance, which is a separate project.

The stats for KDE, on the other hand, not only include the comparable base libraries and applications to that of GNOME, but also much software that for GNOME is completely separate. The data for KDE includes that for the Kopete instant messenging system, while the GNOME data does not include that for the equivalent in GAIM. The KDE data includes Konqueror, while the GNOME data does not include Galeon, Epiphany, Firefox, etc.

The amount translated for GNOME should be far more, just because the portion of software being measured is far less than that being measured by the KDE data. The numbers for GNOME start to decrease significantly once you start making the packages equal (by bringing in GAIM, Galeon, Nautilus, etc.)

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (2, Funny)

Kingsly (565272) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093582)

Since the GP claims to use "Tamil" he probably has basic (highly unlikely) knowledge of Hindi and no knowledge of Bengali.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

quanticle (843097) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093664)

Since the GP claims to use "Tamil" he probably has basic (highly unlikely) knowledge of Hindi and no knowledge of Bengali.

Since the grandparent's post was in well formed English, I find your comment perplexing. Mayhaps he was researching Indian language support for non-English users?

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093055)

This is mostly irrelevant: the money in the service contracts going to India is for English support, not "dialect of the three people in my grandmother's village". By using good-quality English interfaces rather than wasting the hundreds of megabytes of disk on every possible language in the world common to KDE distributions, they save system resources and ease document creation.

If you think I'm kidding, think about how much time is wasted generating multiple sets of incomplete and often poorly edited documentation in multiple languages.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

tolkienfan (892463) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093085)

KDE is very well supported under RedHat. Go bark up a different tree.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

Matt Perry (793115) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093291)

KDE is very well supported under RedHat.
Yes, but it is supported by RedHat? When you are paying for an OS and getting the support that doesn't mean they will support any software that you install. Since they don't ship with KDE I doubt that their support staff would officially support KDE that was compiled and installed by the customer.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

tolkienfan (892463) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093523)

Every RedHat distribution I've ever installed has shipped with KDE.

Re:KDE offers better Tamil, Hindi and Urdu support (1)

Air-conditioned cowh (552882) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093726)

Well, half a KDE anyway!

What Redhat do to KDE gives KDE a bad name.

For corporate stuff then Suse is a better place to see KDE if I wanted to show someone what it could do and for desktop use PCLinux.

Fanboyism (1)

amightywind (691887) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093093)

As an Indian...I myself use the Tamil support of KDE, and have long found it superior to that of GNOME

Interesting the Gnome/KDE Flamewar has spread to India. Fanboyism is a fundemental human trait I guess. If you took 2 Linux machines to New Guinea and gave them to the natives you'd find them waring over Gnome and KDE within an hour. I personally think KDE sucks.

Re:Fanboyism (1)

DextroShadow (957200) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093158)

True. And then a third person would chime in and say fluxbox, and then a fourth would chime in with xfce. Before you know it, there are jihad's and tribal wars going on.

I think its about time... (5, Insightful)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092769)

I think its about time that, even though this piece was slightly biased, mainstream media began looking seriously at the behemouth that *nix has become. Its always been in data centers, and Linux is fitting in well there. The only reason that mainstream view of desktop software is so biased is simply because these people grew up knowing only Windows or Mac, and so that is, to them, how computers are supposed to be, and perform. When someone else comes along with something new, it is always compared to the existing system to see if it measures up.

Now, I'm not saying that Linux is a perfect replacement for XP or OS X, but I remember the arguments about using F3 vs. F1 for the help key, and if you have ever seen Windows 3.0 or earlier, you'd know that there were plenty of people, myself included, that said meh, I'll keep using DR DOS thank you very much. The fact that Linux is the new kid on the block is all the more reason for MS and others to fear it. It *IS* changing everything.

It is about to the point that if a card or MB won't be supported by Linux, I can leave it setting on the shelf, and so can a lot of other people. The fact that there are examples of this, and WHOLE countries (apparently) leaving Windows for Linux means that the revolution is happening, slowly, but it is happening.

This story is not so exciting for those of us who have been waiting for it, expecting it, and are now ready to hear the daily updates in application development that surpases MS's capability to keep up. F/OSS is a better way to do thing, and I think (hope) that CLAMAV and others will show the Bill schills and others exactly what can be done to stop spam, virii, and malware. You know, something along the lines of "here, download the software.. its free.. and only 14.99/year for updates. Then someone fix the F/OSS mail clients to utilize global white and black lists etc. and some of the other ideas for stopping spam for only moderate yearly costs... say... hmmm 14.99/year maybe?

Look at what Vonage and Skype are doing to the telecomms business arena. That is pretty much the same sort of apple cart upsetting that's happening with *nix right now. I'd love to see a *nix distro that is first to be ready (out of the box) to be used to download television, movies, etc. ... you know, like a "Ubuntu media edition for Dell computers" ... or something like that.

I'd just really like to see totally heated up competition in all media markets. iPod! your days are numbered. CD player? your days are numbered. Solid state memory is able to hold as much, in smaller spaces, and is more flexible. I'm just waiting for someone to create the hardware that will supercede CD's and DVD's altogether... leapfrog this whole BR-HD-DVD argument.

Anyway, the point is that this news, isn't really news to some of us, and it should not be shocking to anyone. Bring on more news like this is what I say... we can all use good news anyday.

Re:I think its about time... (1)

Shelled (81123) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092857)

"Now, I'm not saying that Linux is a perfect replacement for XP or OS X..."

You almost make that sound like a negative.

Re:I think its about time... (1)

init100 (915886) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092893)

I'm just waiting for someone to create the hardware that will supercede CD's and DVD's altogether... leapfrog this whole BR-HD-DVD argument.

You might be interested in this:

Holographic Versatile Disc [wikipedia.org]

Re:I think its about time... (1)

CDarklock (869868) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092911)

> When someone else comes along with something new,

New? Linux is about 15 years old.

> it is always compared to the existing system to
> see if it measures up.

So... if Linux has been unable to measure up sufficiently to take significant desktop share over the past fifteen years, what exactly makes you think it's going to suddenly become important?

> Solid state memory is able to hold as much, in
> smaller spaces, and is more flexible.

And a *damn* sight more expensive. I used solid state disk drives when they cost tens of thousands of dollars for a few hundred megabytes. They were great, but honestly - just not worth the money.

Re:I think its about time... (1)

naelurec (552384) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093192)

New? Linux is about 15 years old.

True.. but I don't think anyone will argue that there was even remotely a notion of "desktop linux" 15 years ago. This is relatively recent (last 4-5 years?)

So... if Linux has been unable to measure up sufficiently to take significant desktop share over the past fifteen years, what exactly makes you think it's going to suddenly become important?

It takes time. There is a saying "It takes 20 years to make an overnight success." So umm.. Linux still has 5 years to go.. hehe.. :) Needless to say, month after month, I hear more and more news of people understanding what FOSS/open standards/etc is all about. It seems like Linux is the only desktop os that has ever gained marketshare against Microsoft's monopoly. When your talking about hundreds of millions of installations, it takes time. :-)

Re:I think its about time... (0, Troll)

Hosiah (849792) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093144)

Rare though I login to Slashdot these days, I made an exception just to say: "Damn, you're smart! What the heck are you doing on Slashdot?"

Now begins the standard disclaimer meant for the general public: "Buy a fish, name it life, so you'll have one!" and I might add to the standard disclaimer, "For GODS SAKE, find SOMETHING else to do with your time!"

blah blah and yeah (2, Informative)

atari2600 (545988) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092775)

The state-owned LIC (Life Insurance Corporation) is a big customer and a major player in India and has a major share of the market (with a few smaller players). In the last few years though, private companies have been eating into the share of LICs market.
From here [mindbranch.com]

"Though the total volume of LIC's business increased in the last fiscal year (2004-2005) compared to the previous one, its market share came down from 87.04 to 78.07%. The 14 private insurers increased their market share from about 13% to about 22% in a year's time. The figures for the first two months of the fiscal year 2005-06 also speak of the growing share of the private insurers. The share of LIC for this period has further come down to 75 percent, while the private players have grabbed over 24 percent."

So yeah this is a big deal (where the hell did you come up with "non-trivial"? - use of non-trivial because this is Indian stuff?) and this is offtopic, but rediff.com is a sucky site. Try control-clicking any of their links on their home-page (and say hello to popup central which beat Firefox).

Re:blah blah and yeah (2, Interesting)

giorgosts (920092) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092847)

Here in Greece we have the tax authorities database (www.taxisnet.gr) running Oracle on RHEL, and that makes us another 8 mill. customers. So I guess proffesionals know about their business and install what's best for them. What about the consumer though. Can he make the switch?

Re:blah blah and yeah (4, Insightful)

robertjw (728654) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092863)

Where professionals go consumers will eventually follow. That's why everyone runs Microsoft platforms in their homes, even though when I was growing up Apple donated millions of machines to schools. The business industry wouldn't accept Apple in the workplaces, everyone wanted the same thing at home that they were used to at work, so Windows became dominant. If professionals move to Linux, eventually consumers will as well.

Pseudo-tech (2, Insightful)

Tyr_7BE (461429) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092782)

Based on the price, vendors classify servers as small (anywhere from Rs 40000 up to Rs 500,000), medium (from Rs 500,000 to Rs 1 crore) and large (over Rs 1 crore). They are identified as Intel (or X86 processor-based), Unix (or non-X86 processor-based) and Blade servers. Linux and Solaris are flavours of Unix. Windows and Intel form the loosely-termed "Wintel" brand.

Since when did running Unix decide your processor type for you? Last I checked, BSD ran on X86 without much issue. Last I checked, Linux wasn't a flavour of Unix.

This is what happens when English majors get hired on to do tech writing. It becomes tech guessing.

Re:Pseudo-tech (3, Insightful)

Theatetus (521747) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092814)

Since when did running Unix decide your processor type for you? Last I checked, BSD ran on X86 without much issue. Last I checked, Linux wasn't a flavour of Unix.

The point is, vendors classify servers based on their chip type. The assumption seems to be that a CISC system will run some flavor of WINNT while a RISC system will run some flavor of UNIX (largely because there isn't any other choice for most of them). I could see calling a RISC system UNIX based on the fact that a large percentage of Intel systems are not running UNIX, while virtually every RISC system is.

And, yes, Linux is not a flavour of UNIX, just like the toy I had my dog fetch this afternoon was really a "flying disc" rather than a "frisbee (tm)", since it wasn't made by Whammo (tm).

Re:Pseudo-tech (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093029)

And, yes, Linux is not a flavour of UNIX, just like the toy I had my dog fetch this afternoon was really a "flying disc" rather than a "frisbee (tm)", since it wasn't made by Whammo (tm).

Exactly, I'm glad you understand that LINUX IS NOT A FLAVOR OF UNIX.

Re:Pseudo-tech (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093083)

LOL I have to agree!

Simputer vs tivo (1)

minus_273 (174041) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092874)

I say this is all seriousness, is it really better to have lots of indian companies make flops like the simputer or to have a few american companies make things like Tivo. I dont mean that they are mutually exclusive, but is quantity better than quality? when did that happen?

Re:Simputer vs tivo (1)

jma05 (897351) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092914)

In all seriousness, what does this have to do with the article?

Re:Simputer vs tivo (2, Interesting)

alphakappa (687189) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093667)

It's a pointless argument. Many of the american 'hits' are actually designed and created in India. For example, Portalplayer which powers the iPod, or the Slingbox... many of these small american companies are simply headquartered in the silicon valley for business purposes, while their entire design and development teams are in Bangalore/Hyderabad. As long as the major customers are in the US, that's how things will be. It's pointless to try to distinguish them as Indian or American companies. They are both.

Re:Simputer vs tivo (1)

minus_273 (174041) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093690)

did you just claim that the ipod was designed and created in india? care to back that up? Apple makes a big deal with its designed in california stickers on every product. Lets see you prove the ipod was actually thought up in india.

Re:Simputer vs tivo (1)

alphakappa (687189) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093721)

Read carefully my friend, I mentioned Portalplayer, not the iPod [salon.com] itself. The Portalplayer [mercurynews.com] chip was largely created [wsj.com] in Hyderabad.

Number of customers? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092901)

Citing the number of customers makes no sense. An insurance company doesn't equip each of its customers with a computer (and OS). What's much more relevant to Red Hat is the number of employees of the company that will be using their product. This number is probably in the tens of thousands, not hundreds of millions, assuming every employee gets a Linux desktop. (If it's just server machines, then the number of instances of the OS might be in the hundreds.)

No doubt the poster was motivated to wave a large number around, despite the lack of common sense.

Re:Number of customers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092984)

"Citing the number of customers makes no sense. An insurance company doesn't equip each of its customers with a computer (and OS). What's much more relevant to Red Hat is the number of employees of the company that will be using their product. This number is probably in the tens of thousands, not hundreds of millions, assuming every employee gets a Linux desktop. (If it's just server machines, then the number of instances of the OS might be in the hundreds.)" The number of customers is relevant in terms of the size of the company that adopted the Linux solution.

Re:Number of customers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093038)

Yes, and the size of the company (in employees) could have been cited directly, rather than by implication. But I suppose it wouldn't have been an impressive large number by the submitter's standards.

Number of employees tells you something about efficiency. If Company A can serve 100M customers with 10,000 employees, and Company B provides the same service to the same number of customers, but needs 20,000 employees, then Company B is being rather inefficient. Here, the number of customers is irrelevant to the size of the company.

When talking about the IT infrastructure of a company, the efficiency it provides (in terms of revenue or customers per employee) is a much more interesting figure of merit than just the absolute number of customers.

By that logic... (1)

Naruki (601680) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093206)

you have to cite BOTH numbers in order to make a guess at efficiency. But it still lacks surety, as there are other factors involved as well, such as how much they pay.

Re:Number of customers? (1)

Mostly a lurker (634878) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093275)

While the number of customers LIC has is not directly relevant to the number of Linux computers LIC will use, it serves to make one valid point: there will be some large, complex applications that need to be handled and Linux is up to the task. Having dealt with some applications for a company with around 12 million customers, I can well imagine that LIC has some truly demanding computing problems.

Critical mass (3, Interesting)

teslatug (543527) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092926)

Linux has gotten to the point where Microsoft's FUD can no longer hurt it. There are enough companies that have adopted Linux now that nothing that Microsoft says can cause clueful companies to ignore a Linux solution. Sure Microsoft will make or keep some sales due to FUD, but that no longer hurts Linux but perhaps the companies themselves.

The next battle may be with patents, but with IBM so involved with Linux, I seriously doubt Microsoft would go head to head with Linux for fear of stepping on IBM's toes. I actually wish there would be a big patent battle. If there was it would probably fizzle out with the result being some cross-patenting agreement, but there is a miniscule chance that companies and the government would realize the mess of patents if we had an apocalyptic patents battle.

Re:Critical mass (1)

Peyna (14792) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092995)

Linux' biggest problem isn't Microsoft, it's itself.

the pirate cd makers association call strike. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092947)

god. i hope the trend doesnt continue, the winduze pirate cd makes association is talking of going on hunger strike if this continues.

*its a joke*

A long way to go (3, Insightful)

DesiVideoGamer (863325) | more than 8 years ago | (#15092975)

I did some research/interviews in India and I can assure you that Linux has a long way to go until it can get wide adoption for Desktop Computers (lets ignore servers for now).

- Almost everybody in India has a pirated version of Windows XP (which came with their computer, so its pretty much "free" for them)
- Very few people I interviewed actually do Windows Update (probably because of the whole XP-Key validation)
- Unless he/she is a software engineer, they would have never heard of Linux
- When asked about spyware, they didn't seem to care. Most Indians didn't seem to care about the performance factor. They also didn't seem to care about identity theft as much either (the culture is such that most people pay just about everything in cash since most vendors charge a "service charge" for using credit cards or even a check)
- Bill Gates is more of a hero in India than a devil (his charitable contributions are well known)
- Tying in Gujarati in Linux (KDE) takes time and pratice to learn (I assume the same with other Indian languages)
- Some "cablenet" ISPs in India require you to run Windows software in order to connect to the Internet. There is no support for Linux at this time.

Those are just a few problems that I can think of on top of my head. There are plenty more issues in Linux Desktop adoption in India.

Re:A long way to go (2, Funny)

Cherita Chen (936355) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093147)

Indian Companies Embracing Linux Faster Than Ever


With all the time you spent banging out that post - perhaps it would have been better spent actually reading the article.. then you might have realized that this has nothing to do with home use...

Re:A long way to go (1)

DesiVideoGamer (863325) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093205)

Sorry for not being clear. These interviews were in a corporate environment. Desktop usage is very important in corporate company since it suddenly becomes a requirement for employees to learn such an OS. However, the companies that I interviewed were not nearly as big as the ones mentioned in the article (they were all less then 100 employees) and so there may be some differences between what I said and large companies like Rediff.

Re:A long way to go (1)

downwardspiral (910716) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093199)

u did get everything right.

Re:A long way to go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093471)

- Almost everybody in India has a pirated version of windows XP (which came with their computer, so its pretty much "free" for them)
yeah its somewhere arount 99% here and microsoft did gave windowsxp for peanuts(some Rs 1500 $40USD or so i'm not sure) here, but it too did not work. the thing is many people dont know that you need to buy windows to use it. Everyone buys assembled systems and the systems will get pirated windows installed by default. when i say that linux is free to some people..., the answer I get was.... "Windows is also free. right?"
- Unless he/she is a software engineer, they would have never heard of Linux
Thats not completely true and not completely false. I have had many people(non soft engg) asking me what all the fuss abt linux is. To say you frankly, they dont know what windows actually is and what it does. They simply use/buy computer coz their kid will learn it or they need to do some office work, which they dont actually know what they are doing. They simple remember their work like this... press f8 enter name, press enter, then f10....

And nobody cared (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15092987)

Especially the Vietnamese.

Stateless Linux (5, Interesting)

Chemicalscum (525689) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093002)

Since this is a major integrated desktop and server deployment. It is an interesting question to ask is RH using its stateless Linux technology. It seems to me that the adoption of the approach is one factor that can drive a Windows to Linux desktop migration as is happening with LIC. The Fedora Project defines stateless Linux as:

The Stateless Linux project is an OS-wide initiative to ensure that Fedora computers can be set up as replaceable appliances, with no important local state.

For example, a system administrator can set up a network of hundreds of desktop client machines as clones of a master system, and be sure that all of them are kept synchronised whenever he or she updates the master system. We provide several technologies for doing this.

This is an obvious improvement over the situation now when a legion of MCSE services the networked MS Windows fat (in fact boated or obese) clients. By adopting this technology a large corporation can avoid the even greater bloat that will be enforced by the Vista upgrade.

It seems to me that there are three major approaches to the forthcoming corporate migrations to the Linux desktop by those corporations forward looking enough to want to avoid the cost and dislocations of the upcoming upgrades to Vista and who at the same time want to make cost savings and improve IT efficiency.

1. There is the Novell approach which is to replace the Windows fat client by a better more cost effective Linux fat client, i.e. SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop.

2. There is the IBM approach which uses a Java Rich Client Platform (the Eclipse RCP) that is OS agnostic and which allows a smooth transition from Windows to Linux. This involves the Websphere based Workplace technology, the OOo based IBM productivity editors and new Hannover Notes client which runs natively on Linux.

3. Finally there is the RH stateless Linux approach outlined above.

Holy bias and son and spirit (3, Funny)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093008)

So if I come home from work hungry like hell and embrace the whole fridge, does it make me embracing vegetarian diet faster than ever since I also ate tomatoes (beside the pork and chicken)?

As you can see, I'm kinda hungry.. but that's not the point.

Re:Holy bias and son and spirit (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093524)

I envy you !, but such a thing is not meant to last.......

The paint is chipped in places, so if i try anything like that
i am sure to get a shock !!

Wow: RTFA and tell me Linux isn't going places (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093084)

"LIC will deploy Red Hat Enterprise Linux across its 2,048 branches, 100 divisional offices, seven zonal offices, head office, subsidiary offices and overseas locations. The Linux deployment will provide LIC with a uniform, finely tuned operating system environment, along with security and integrity for its core application software. The implementation will also include utilisation of enterprise-layered solutions through Linux Servers for management, provisioning and monitoring of Red Hat Network."

In other news... outsouce[joke] (1)

Legodude522 (847797) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093115)

In other news, the Redhat team decided to outsource to India.

LIC - India used Unix earlier (4, Informative)

betasam (713798) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093124)

LIC India was one of the largest users of Unix (SUN Solaris) systems prior to this announcement. They had trained Unix sysadmins and tape backup systems in 1998. Long before such an official announcement was made many of the client machines connecting to the servers were being switched to Linux even at regional offices. This time Redhat is migrating the servers too to Linux. So that in a sense is the corporate world beginning to embrace Linux.

Adding to this, Reliance Infocomm Ltd., one of the largest CDMA service providers does provide a rather clumsy, yet workable tool for dialing-up internet using their phones. They try to address a small but existent Linux Desktop market. There are OEM PCs that ship with TurboLinux desktops in India from many manufacturers.

However, the largets ATM chains, SBI - State Bank of India (now on a week long strike) and several other institutions continue to use flavors of legacy old systems including Microsoft Win32 platforms. Home users are most uncomfortable switching to Linux despite the arrival of Ubuntu/Kubuntu and other easily configurable alternatives. There is still much to be done. The transition is slow but definitely happening in the market, and that's the good news.

As for outsourcing blah, that's irrelevant to the article. Service firms adopt platforms that can put them in business with their clientele. That's business sense and they keep doing it.

and of course rediff uses LInux (1)

Russ Nelson (33911) | more than 8 years ago | (#15093350)

And of course rediff (the news service posting this article) uses Linux. Their free webmail system, Rediffmail.com, alone uses well over sixty Linux servers and has hundreds of terabytes spinning.

We want our jobs back (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#15093548)

See above.
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