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Author Topic: Microsoft vs. Linux  (Read 5077 times)

Sunni

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« on: January 31, 2004, 08:23:37 am »

Not exactly a new news story, but still noteworthy:

http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/business/158...research27.html
First paragraph:
"Microsoft Corp. is touting the results of 'independent analyses' in its latest effort to show corporate decision-makers the merits of its Windows operating system vs. Linux, its biggest open-source competitor."

However, the so-called independent analyses were commissioned by Microsoft, leading some to ask just how independent they are.

FWIW, the studies may be good, but that doesn't mean that Microsoft is off the hook when it comes to meeting scientific standards. When private companies commission studies, it doesn't necessarily mean the data will be cooked ... however, private companies often suppress studies that produce results that are not favorable to them. That isn't supposed to happen in the academic/scientific realm (but it does, and it seems to be happening with increasing frequency  :( ).

One of the more important points made by the article, IMO, is just how seriously Microsoft is taking the Tux threat, despite their protestations otherwise.
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Bear

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #1 on: January 31, 2004, 01:10:52 pm »

I work for a large, multinational computer  company that likes the color blue.

We have 10s of thousands of personal computers running MS Windows of one flavor or another. We got
the news recently that there will be an effort to move off of Windows and on to Linux for our personal
workstations. I could almost hear a cheer go up through out the building! This effort will happen over a 2
year period.

I. Can't. Wait.

Bear
 
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Sunni

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #2 on: January 31, 2004, 04:10:22 pm »

Good for your company, Bear!   :D  
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Junker

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #3 on: January 31, 2004, 06:34:08 pm »

It's still fun to watch.

It was 'obvious' some years ago that standard commercial software was dead. With the biggest however, the rearguard action will last the longest. An example of such action can be seen in the i.p.arena--threats, howling, law suits, and on and on. But the end is still predictable.

Soon enough all companies are going to cut 'costs' and go open source. The op system was the big kernel and now all the major apps are being taken out, many of the less popular are going or already gone. It's just a matter of time.

Fascinating too is now there is open source hardware coming, followed by open source boards, then systems.

Give it another round and I bet we'll see open source come out of the computer arena.

I think this is an exciting analog to the whole ancap position. Each industry is 'controlled' and jockeyed by the big powers. That causes inefficiencies. Open souce breaks open the inefficiencies. Regular business cannot compete. Controlling in each industrial arena will be the amount of inefficiency that can be gotten around by an open source approach. I would assume the more govt interferrence, the more inefficiency. Copyright and patent might be indicative here. The corporate state theoratically is the only thing that allowed large business to begin with. The smaller companies were always more creative and quicker on their feet. That may come back too.

As I just think about it-- This is the center of entrepreneurial growth at the moment and should attract ancappers. Employees are no longer cost effective--too many mandated bennies being filled by choices the employees would rather make themselves anyway. The healthcare beenie has turned into a nightmare with 1,000 rules, etc. The company model that is coming has no employees, only contracted workers. There the contract can be terminated for causes in the contract and there is less recourse of litigation--regardless of minority affiliation. Healthcare will be entirely controlled by the individual-- you're young & healthy you need less. The healthcare insurance companies no longer have to deal with major corporate contracts thus minimizing health care 'managers'--the keepers of the gate, there to keep costs down, not make sure service is good.

So in some sense the freedom goal is coming a little at a time and from an unexpected source. The ancap entrepreneur needs to do an anlysis of these trends and fit in at the right points in the curve. The individual contract holders will also likely be ancappers. The standard shoeple is too scared to go from the corprate-state nipple.

IMHO.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2004, 06:41:27 pm by Junker »
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H.M. WoggleBug, T.E.

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2004, 11:10:28 pm »

Junker - I think you are wearing rose-colored glasses. Though I am NOT a defender of Microsoft -obviously the target here with many oblique references to it - I would counter your other observations with: Adobe, Oracle, Peoplesoft, Apple, and Electronic Arts.

Commercial software is alive and well, thank you very much.

"Cutting costs" going to Linux is NOT a given. Linux, especially for the desktop, is not nearly as stable as Windows XP. I say that as a Linux engineer. Actually, I also work on Mac OS, Win32, and vxWorks. My preferred system currently, is MacOS.

MacOSX is an interesting hybrid between open source and commercial. The underpinnings of BSD Unix are open source. Lots of the Mac OS is open source. Even their Quicktime streaming server is open source (there's some SERIOUS technology there!) But the Apple model has placed a premium atop that source with their proprietary GUI and other tools.

When talking about reducing costs with open source, I would beg to differ. The initial costs may be cheaper, but the support costs will be higher, usually, especially in the desktop arena. So the effect is merely TRANSFERRING costs from one vendor to another. This is how Red Hat makes money.

Microsoft is busily committing suicide with their arrogance, mediocre products, and predatory pricing. Everybody I know hates them and their stuff. Even diehard Windows fans can't stand all the cynicism from Redmond these days. Microsoft is as close to a "natural monopoly" as we have ever seen. All the horror stories the collectivists have screamed about have finally come to fruition with Microsoft.

So what is the effect? IBM moving to Linux. Middleware and larger servers leaving Microsoft and going to Linux. Even Apple seems to be benefitting (though market share is stubbornly low). Entire countries leaving MS to go to other vendors (Israel, for example).

Microsoft is still doing just fine, but the edge is off. They have been abusing their customers for too long, and their products finally have some real competition. They'll either get better, or they'll be marginalized. Either of those two options will take many years to manifest.

'Bug
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Jac

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #5 on: February 01, 2004, 12:58:58 am »

Quote
Linux, especially for the desktop, is not nearly as stable as Windows XP.
What kernel and what distro?

You can't just say that "Linux" is not as stable as WinXP... that's pretty abstract. It's like saying, "Vegetables are not as tasty as bananas." You're trying to compare an entire community to a single "entity."
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Hidden_Variable

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #6 on: February 04, 2004, 08:58:08 pm »

Just  a general question:
Is Linux easy to install & use? I don't really like Windows but it's mostly point, click,
type and etc. Ease of use and lots of good programs and aps.
I don't care if Linux is free or not, bc I don't want to deal with "type command at prompt", and having to track down drivers for the printer and blah, blah, blah.
I've tried Knoppix & Mandrake and hated 'em both. <_<
« Last Edit: February 04, 2004, 08:59:16 pm by Hidden_Variable »
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Julian Morrison

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #7 on: February 05, 2004, 01:56:37 am »

Knoppix and Mandrake are about as good as it gets right now. Knoppix needs no install; Mandrake's install is smooth and effective. Both of them default to using KDE, which is IMO as good as window's GUI, or better. But if you don't like them, well you don't and there it is.

I'm surprised you speak of "having to track down drivers for the printer" - unless you have a very new, very old, or very obscure printer. You did check the "hardware supported" lists, right?
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Plinker-MS

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #8 on: February 05, 2004, 02:28:09 am »

Quote
Is Linux easy to install & use?
I have installed various flavors of Linux and Windows on many machines, and in my informed opinion...

Linux is easier to install than Windows.  Not "as easy as"...  Easier. Much easier.

No 47-digit "CD key" to type in.  No "XP phone home" registration (or re-registration when you change hardware components).  Your computer doesn't give you the third degree when you try to install or upgrade software.


It is also takes alot less time to set up a usable, secure machine.

Most Linux distros come with a complete suite of office applications, a PDF viewer, apache, a mail server, a graphics editor, a compiler, and every scripting language known to man.  Windows doesn't.  If you want any applications, you have to install (and pay for) them separately.

Security updates are easier with Linux, too.  I think my least favorite feature of the Microsoft Universe is "Windows Update."    Not too bad if you are installing windows on only 1 machine, behind a good firewall, with a broadband connection -- but it doesn't scale well at all.

My Linux solution is to download (over a fast connection) all the security updates from one of the mirrors and burn it to a CD.  I can then use the CD to install all the security patches before the machine is ever connected to a network.  Cloning multiple machines is also much easier (especially without the XP registration nonsense).

Quote
I don't care if Linux is free or not, bc I don't want to deal with "type command at prompt", and having to track down drivers for the printer and blah, blah, blah.

I've tried Knoppix & Mandrake and hated 'em both.

Yes, drivers for oddball hardware can sometimes be a pain.  (although it is becoming less so).  If this is the problem, find a local geek who can make it work for you.

I don't know about your "type command at prompt" comment.  Mandrake and Knoppix can be installed, configured, and operated completely from the GUI -- unless you are trying to do something extra clever.  

Maybe you should try Lindows if your Windoze withdrawal symptoms are that bad.
« Last Edit: February 05, 2004, 02:31:32 am by Plinker-MS »
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Hidden_Variable

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #9 on: February 05, 2004, 12:41:04 pm »

Plinker & Julian,
Julian
I just couldn't get the printer to work. The website (of the mgf) said it was "unsupported at this time..")  
Plinker-MS,
Based on your recommendation I'm gonna un-ass the $3.75 it costs to buy a Distro CD and  try, try again... (I be a lot more patient about these things now.  :rolleyes:  
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RagnarDanneskjold

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #10 on: February 05, 2004, 04:54:08 pm »

Hidden_Variable
Quote
I'm gonna un-ass the $3.75 it costs...

 :lol: Ouch, I have never heard that expression before.  I hurt myself laughing.  And, I am at work, so laughing out loud ...
[vocabulary-Insert]I'm gonna un-ass[/vocabulary-Insert]
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Misfit

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #11 on: February 05, 2004, 09:13:15 pm »

I'm wondering if it might not be fun (possible?) to try to convert my ancient laptop to Linux. It runs just fine, but I don't really use it because it's soooo pokey and runs on Win 95...I don't think the system requirements were enough to do any further Windows updates on it....well, not with any room left to put any other programs on there.
Wouldn't Linux speed it up?
I had entertained switching my old PC over when I got my new one, but the darn thing committed suicide right after the Dell boxes arrived...guess it felt shunned...
Not super familiar with the whole Linux system going on there (never got that far)...what would you folks recommend? All I would be interested in would be doing some word processing and maybe a little dial up e-mail, if that's possible.
Might be a nice way of getting my feet wet without worrying about screwing my main computer up.  

Plinker-MS

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« Reply #12 on: February 06, 2004, 01:43:26 am »

Quote
I'm wondering if it might not be fun (possible?) to try to convert my ancient laptop to Linux. It runs just fine, but I don't really use it because it's soooo pokey and runs on Win 95...I don't think the system requirements were enough to do any further Windows updates on it....well, not with any room left to put any other programs on there.
Wouldn't Linux speed it up?
 
My general experience is that it might take longer for the machine to boot up, but applications and such will be alot less "pokey" once the machine is up and running.

I have an old (circa 1997) Win95 desktop machine, that is now being used exclusively as a Linux box.

IIRC, it has a 233 Mhz Pentium processor and ~48Meg of RAM.

The good news is that yes, you can put Linux on older machines, and it runs quite well.  

I even use that machine on a daily basis. (as a DHCP server, firewall, dialup "router", "guinea pig" web server, etc.  -- just not as a desktop machine anymore)


The bad news is that all the slick, graphical (bloated) install scripts on the newer Linux distros might require more memory than you have -- just to run the install program.  (Linux itself probably would run just fine, if you could figure out a way to install it)

The machine I mentioned above is still running Mandrake 9.0.  (It has also run older versions of RedHat in the past).  When I tried to upgrade to Mandrake 9.1, the installer choked due to lack of memory.

I could probably get around this problem by putting the hard drive in one of my other machines, installing Linux, and putting it back in the clunker machine.  I am just too busy to do it right now.


Anyway, if you have problems installing the latest/greatest Linux build on it, you may want to try an older version.  Or possibly a small-footprint Linux distro that is designed around minimal hardware.  Or put more RAM in it if you can find it cheap.
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kbarrett

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #13 on: February 06, 2004, 12:03:42 pm »

Quote
Not super familiar with the whole Linux system going on there (never got that far)...what would you folks recommend? All I would be interested in would be doing some word processing and maybe a little dial up e-mail, if that's possible.
Might be a nice way of getting my feet wet without worrying about screwing my main computer up.
I would suggest using Damn Small Linux on your laptop.

It fits on a 50meg (!) cdrom, and will run entirly from that cdrom. The disk also has instructions for loading it on your hard drive if you want a permanent install.

If you don't like it, just don't install it. Your windows OS is untouched.

( note, if your laptop won't boot from the cdrom drive, you will need to use the rawrite.exe on the disk to make a boot floppy in windows. Instructions are on the cd )

 
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Junker

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Microsoft vs. Linux
« Reply #14 on: February 13, 2004, 01:56:00 am »

---Keyboard Revolutionary
> Is Linux easy to install & use?

I use WinXP on one machine.

I use Suse Linux 8.0 on two different machines. Both worked like a charm. It recognized all hardware and installed quickly with zero problems. The KDE is the standard GUI, but others, Gnome, etc., can be chosen at log-on. All are fine and as good as and usually better than Win.

Use: At least as easy as Win. I get problems doing new things. Usually new things go well, but problems do occasinally come from my ignorance of the system. But note well, I did not even have the option to do these things in Win.

Problem: Using 'Fritz' Card for ISDN into internet. SuseLinux saw it, recognized it, and had the correct hardware drivers. No problem, I thought. But after install, I couldn't get a connect to my ISP. I talked with ISP & Fritz card people all day--no solution. I called Suse Linux toward the end of the day and was online in 5 minutes.

I am going to keep my WinXP system for business compatibility. Once I am confident I can convert all files (WinWord, PP, etc.) from Win to Linux, I'll drop WinXP for Linux too. If I have a problem with Linux, there are answers. If I have a problem with Windows, all I have gotten is no solution, but buy a new product.

---Keyboard Revolutionary

>I would suggest using Damn Small Linux on your laptop.

Thanks from me. I've downloaded it and hope to have a good source for laptops & smaller machines (like my 16MB stoneage rock crusher).
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