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Thread: Linux for doing business

  1. #21
    prodigy_ is offline May the Ubuntu Be With You!
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    Re: Linux for doing business

    Quote Originally Posted by coldraven View Post
    What is it with sending .doc files? This is not 1998 anymore.
    I think you'll find that pdf files are all over the internet, that might be a clue as to what format you should be using.
    Libre Office does all that I need, all my invoices are exported to pdf.
    "Internet" is the key word here. Converting to PDF is a one-way road and people generally want to be able to edit documents they receive from their business partners. I guess you've never worked in IT and never had to explain to a user that no, they can't really edit PDF. And no, they can't convert it back to DOC/whatever without losing most of formatting unless the company is willing to purchase software specifically for the task. And no, Adobe Acrobat won't do. And... well, you get the picture, I believe.

    It's a very, very good thing most people don't even try to bother with PDF.

    ---

    Back to topic:
    I don't think there' s a FOSS alternative to Exchange. And investing in Exchange is rather unwise unless you have Windows/Outlook clients. So it's either Windows all the way or a custom Linux-based solution which is entirely possible but may take quite some time to implement.

    Another problem is ActiveX. Unfortunately, if you need a browser that can work with ActiveX websites reliably, you need IE.

    Finally, some professional software is still only available for Windows platform. FOSS alternatives may or may not exist and may or may not meet your requirements. That's something you need to investigate very thoroughly while you're planning the migration.

    So, in short, everything is possible but you need to consider time, effort and costs involved. If you need to migrate existing infrastructure, it's a project that'll take you months (or even years) to prepare and push to production.
    Last edited by prodigy_; April 1st, 2013 at 01:03 PM.

  2. #22
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    Re: Linux for doing business

    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy_ View Post
    "Internet" is the key word here. Converting to PDF is a one-way road and people generally want to be able to edit documents they receive from their business partners. I guess you've never worked in IT and never had to explain to a user that no, they can't really edit PDF. And no, they can't convert it back to DOC/whatever without losing most of formatting unless the company is willing to purchase software specifically for the task. And no, Adobe Acrobat won't do. And... well, you get the picture, I believe.

    It's a very, very good thing most people don't even try to bother with PDF.
    As mentioned earlier, I don't want my clients to edit the documents I provide to them.

    That being said, it is quite possible to create an editable pdf, if you're into that kind of thing. In fact, I've attached one to this post, so you can try it out yourself. The fact that you may not know how to do it doesn't mean that it can't be easily done.

    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy_ View Post
    Back to topic:
    I don't think there' s a FOSS alternative to Exchange. And investing in Exchange is rather unwise unless you have Windows/Outlook clients. So it's either Windows all the way or a custom Linux-based solution which is entirely possible but may take quite some time to implement.
    Have you looked at Zimbra?

    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy_ View Post
    Another problem is ActiveX. Unfortunately, if you need a browser that can work with ActiveX websites reliably, you need IE.
    I agree that ActiveX is a problem. In fact, as a former web developer, I'd say that ActiveX provides all kinds of problems. But that's a different topic. It goes back to my previous question of what kind of business is being discussed; most businesses aren't web developers.

    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy_ View Post
    Finally, some professional software is still only available for Windows platform. FOSS alternatives may or may not exist and may or may not meet your requirements. That's something you need to investigate very thoroughly while you're planning the migration.

    So, in short, everything is possible but you need to consider time, effort and costs involved. If you need to migrate existing infrastructure, it's a project that'll take you months (or even years) to prepare and push to production.
    Not to beat a dead horse, but we're back to the "what kind of business" question. For instance, i'm not convinced that the average banker, broker, accountant, doctor or attorney needs to rely upon the Adobe Creative Suite on a daily basis. If you could provide some specifics, that would be helpful.
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  3. #23
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    Kolab or Citadel

    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy_ View Post
    Back to topic:
    I don't think there' s a FOSS alternative to Exchange. And investing in Exchange is rather unwise unless you have Windows/Outlook clients.
    In addition to Zimbra, the other two that come to mind are Citadel and Kolab. If you really want to emulate Exchange, then you can probably also throw in Procmail and have it delete 10% - 30% of your mails. If you're just looking for mail, then there are plenty of FOSS mail servers and they are even in the repositories.
    The Truth Shall Make Ye Fret.

  4. #24
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    sogo

    SOGo can also be added to the list.
    The Truth Shall Make Ye Fret.

  5. #25
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    Re: Linux for doing business

    Quote Originally Posted by thatguruguy View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by prodigy
    Finally, some professional software is still only available for Windows platform. FOSS alternatives may or may not exist and may or may not meet your requirements. That's something you need to investigate very thoroughly while you're planning the migration.
    So, in short, everything is possible but you need to consider time, effort and costs involved. If you need to migrate existing infrastructure, it's a project that'll take you months (or even years) to prepare and push to production.
    Not to beat a dead horse, but we're back to the "what kind of business" question. For instance, i'm not convinced that the average banker, broker, accountant, doctor or attorney needs to rely upon the Adobe Creative Suite on a daily basis. If you could provide some specifics, that would be helpful.
    I'm sure specifics could be found in abundance for just about every industry. My own industry is geology and mining, and we use mine design software such as Surpac and Leapfrog. No support there for anything but Windows.

    Of course, we also heavily use Microsoft Office and Access, both of which make me cringe. But until the flagship products become multiplatform, I have little hope that the business will ever move towards adoption of a less proprietary administrative format.

  6. #26
    prodigy_ is offline May the Ubuntu Be With You!
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    Re: Kolab or Citadel

    Quote Originally Posted by Lars Noodén View Post
    Zimbra
    The free version lacks so many features it's not even funny. Like I said, if you want a full featured and FOSS alternative to Exchange, you have to improvise. A lot. Just as with Linux environments in general. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing. :) If your IT team is up to the challenge, you can turn Linux into exactly what you want.

  7. #27
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    Re: Linux for doing business

    Quote Originally Posted by moribashi View Post
    LibreOffice has major problems with formatting and it is important to send correctly formatted documents while doing business.

    Thunderbird and calendar - in my opinion you can't take seriously some unofficial plugin and deploy it and support it on hundreds or even thousands of desktops.

    Any more information?
    I think it is more msft/word that has major problems. (it has always been a stinker) . the trouble is they are currently the business standard

    i recently updated to LibreOffice 4.0.2.2 ( yesterday ) . so far i'm getting better results in feeding .docx format to msft/office version 2010 : at least msft/office (word) accepts the .docx document rather than yelling that the document is "corrupt"

    yelling the document is corrupt will get you instantly rejected

    MSFT managed to get the ISO to adopt their OOXML process as the new Open Standard however . so in looking at this question we need to ask : does the document meet the ISO/OOXML standard ?

    the APA formatted document my daughter just sent me came in OK although it had 2 comment type overlays that LO did not handle properly . I just deleted them and that fixed the issue .

    the thing about Linux/Ubuntu and especially LibreOffice is that this will be HUGE for students! : a QUALITY O/S -- and free office software!!

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