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Diametric
March 2nd, 2011, 05:33 PM
This is not good news. It's not the end of the world or anything, but I still hate to see it.

http://www.linuxjournal.com/content/german-open-source-experiment-things-not-going-plan

Spice Weasel
March 2nd, 2011, 05:37 PM
People (especially those not confident with using computers) don't like change. At all. From experience, if you attempt to do something as simple as teach then to use the start menu rather than the desktop to launch programs they will want the icons back within 2 days.

BrokenKingpin
March 2nd, 2011, 06:02 PM
That is unfortunate, but if Windows works better for them, then who are we to look down on them for it. To me, it does sound like their migration effort could have been tackled differently though.

In terms of hardware, it should have been figured out up front of switching to Linux what printers would be comparable. And for the users, they could have switched to some of the open source applications while still on Windows, and then move to the different OS... doing it all at once it too much of a change.

ikt
March 2nd, 2011, 07:38 PM
That is unfortunate, but if Windows works better for them, then who are we to look down on them for it.

It's never that simple, it's very likely microsoft got their fingers into the pie somehow like they usually do.

RiceMonster
March 2nd, 2011, 07:54 PM
It's never that simple, it's very likely microsoft got their fingers into the pie somehow like they usually do.

It's always much easier to blame an external factor rather than looking at your own flaws.

clanky
March 2nd, 2011, 08:32 PM
It's never that simple, it's very likely microsoft got their fingers into the pie somehow like they usually do.

tinfoil hat anyone?

KiwiNZ
March 2nd, 2011, 08:39 PM
As hard a pill that it maybe to swallow, but the answer is quite simple. Linux is ready for the Server.
It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop market, I have said this many times.

For the Enterprise Market it is simple "why make IT harder than it has to be" and Linux does just that.

Diametric
March 2nd, 2011, 09:06 PM
As hard a pill that it maybe to swallow, but the answer is quite simple. Linux is ready for the Server.
It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop market, I have said this many times.

For the Enterprise Market it is simple "why make IT harder than it has to be" and Linux does just that.

Fair enough assessment, but I still agree with dude up top who said MS prolly got their fingers in it. It's too big of a market share to not aggressively tackle. IMHO, MS would view it like a cancer that would need to be cut out...I'm certain they fear if it took off well, it would spread. Not crazy talk to suggest a business go after what was loss to a (non?)competitor.

Cheers.

KiwiNZ
March 2nd, 2011, 09:17 PM
Fair enough assessment, but I still agree with dude up top who said MS prolly got their fingers in it. It's too big of a market share to not aggressively tackle. IMHO, MS would view it like a cancer that would need to be cut out...I'm certain they fear if it took off well, it would spread. Not crazy talk to suggest a business go after what was loss to a (non?)competitor.

Cheers.

You know, CIO's and CEO's are capable of making, and do make decisions without Uncle Bill in the room:wink:

Yes MS would have discussed the return through their business partner when the German Foreign Office issued a RFP.

koenn
March 2nd, 2011, 09:29 PM
You know, CIO's and CEO's are capable of making, and do make decisions without Uncle Bill in the room:wink:
otoh, there is such a thing as "greasing the wheels", and I remember working in a country where "consideration fee" was a well-established term for expenses made to steer a decision. That wasn't Germany, though.

mips
March 2nd, 2011, 09:31 PM
otoh, there is such a thing as "greasing the wheels", and I remember working in a country where "consideration fee" was a well-established term for expenses made to steer a decision. That wasn't Germany, though.

Sound like something close to home which seems to be normal business practice :D

koenn
March 2nd, 2011, 09:41 PM
Sound like something close to home which seems to be normal business practice :D
same continent :)

koenn
March 2nd, 2011, 10:15 PM
As hard a pill that it maybe to swallow, but the answer is quite simple. Linux is ready for the Server.
It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop market, I have said this many times.

For the Enterprise Market it is simple "why make IT harder than it has to be" and Linux does just that.

I'm not too sure about that.
For one, it's not only about "why make it harder than it is" - that's an important principle, but not the only one, and not always the most important one.

Secondly,
an entreprise environment is a managed, controlled environment. That means that they know what they have to deal with, and have control over what enters it.

It's strange that they'd have hardware compatibility problems - one would expect they checked and tested hardware compatibility before the migration to Linux, and have full compatibility with their Linux versions as a requirement in their RFPs for new hardware and peripherals.

Their analysis before their migration to Linux would have told them what sort of applications, file formats etc they have to deal with, and you'd expect they'd have solved any problems in that field before making the move, or not make it at all.



So, it would be interesting to know why this went bad. There could be interesting lessons to be learned in it.

JDShu
March 2nd, 2011, 10:57 PM
I'm not too sure about that.
For one, it's not only about "why make it harder than it is" - that's an important principle, but not the only one, and not always the most important one.

Secondly,
an entreprise environment is a managed, controlled environment. That means that they know what they have to deal with, and have control over what enters it.

It's strange that they'd have hardware compatibility problems - one would expect they checked and tested hardware compatibility before the migration to Linux, and have full compatibility with their Linux versions as a requirement in their RFPs for new hardware and peripherals.

Their analysis before their migration to Linux would have told them what sort of applications, file formats etc they have to deal with, and you'd expect they'd have solved any problems in that field before making the move, or not make it at all.



So, it would be interesting to know why this went bad. There could be interesting lessons to be learned in it.

Agreed, the lack of information we're getting is unfortunate.

sydbat
March 2nd, 2011, 11:59 PM
I'm not too sure about that.
For one, it's not only about "why make it harder than it is" - that's an important principle, but not the only one, and not always the most important one.

Secondly,
an entreprise environment is a managed, controlled environment. That means that they know what they have to deal with, and have control over what enters it.

It's strange that they'd have hardware compatibility problems - one would expect they checked and tested hardware compatibility before the migration to Linux, and have full compatibility with their Linux versions as a requirement in their RFPs for new hardware and peripherals.

Their analysis before their migration to Linux would have told them what sort of applications, file formats etc they have to deal with, and you'd expect they'd have solved any problems in that field before making the move, or not make it at all.



So, it would be interesting to know why this went bad. There could be interesting lessons to be learned in it.Just a guess...but it IS a government agency...which are not necessarily known for "getting the best people" for the job...

Austin25
March 3rd, 2011, 12:27 AM
With Microsoft products in the government, there literally is a "Microsoft Tax". One cannot avoid supporting them, can they.:icon_frown:

KiwiNZ
March 3rd, 2011, 12:30 AM
Just a guess...but it IS a government agency...which are not necessarily known for "getting the best people" for the job...

ITIL was developed by a Government agency :rolleyes:

Think before you speak before you insult

Refer the COC

KiwiNZ
March 3rd, 2011, 12:31 AM
With Microsoft products in the government, there literally is a "Microsoft Tax". One cannot avoid supporting them, can they.:icon_frown:

For Microsoft there is a HUGE Government discount they have to provide... ;-)

Public Sector bargaining power is very strong

MisterGaribaldi
March 3rd, 2011, 12:32 AM
The article makes many salient and very valid points. However, getting the Linux community to go along with various standardizing changes is like trying to herd cats.

Moreover, it's 2011, technology is everywhere, the reality is that "anyone" might choose to use (or try to use) Linux, and lack of support for various devices is just not going to be tolerated by those who don't have some other reason to support Linux.

If the Linux community wants to compete, it needs to grow up and take care of the many rough edges. That, or it needs to not complain when it finds it's grip slip like it did here this example with Germany.

sydbat
March 3rd, 2011, 01:20 AM
ITIL was developed by a Government agency :rolleyes:True enough.


Think before you speak before you insult

Refer the COCOoops...forgot where I was...sorry.;)

Dr. C
March 3rd, 2011, 02:52 AM
As hard a pill that it maybe to swallow, but the answer is quite simple. Linux is ready for the Server.
It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop market, I have said this many times.

For the Enterprise Market it is simple "why make IT harder than it has to be" and Linux does just that.

Really?

I would have said the same thing back in 2001, but in 2011 it is simply not the case. In any case I do believe that Canonical has something to say about this. http://www.ubuntu.com/products/casestudies/french-national-police-force-saves-2-million-year-ubuntu

endemic.uk
March 3rd, 2011, 03:35 AM
It took them ten years on the server and five on the desktop to discover Linux just wasn't their thing.

They release two interim reports that paint a picture of minor teething problems but of an ultimately successful transition.

So now they are going to rip everything out and go back to the solution that they discarded in the first place.

And Microsoft's money had absolutely no influence on those people who were responsible for this decision.

Since it will probably be the German taxpayer that foots the bill I'm surprised so little has been said.

You could smell this in the vacuum of space.

Dustin2128
March 3rd, 2011, 03:52 AM
Fair enough assessment, but I still agree with dude up top who said MS prolly got their fingers in it. It's too big of a market share to not aggressively tackle. IMHO, MS would view it like a cancer that would need to be cut out...I'm certain they fear if it took off well, it would spread. Not crazy talk to suggest a business go after what was loss to a (non?)competitor.

Cheers.
That was uncanny...

[Linux & the GPL are] a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual property sense to everything it touches

koenn
March 3rd, 2011, 07:40 PM
Just a guess...but it IS a government agency...which are not necessarily known for "getting the best people" for the job...

otoh, it is Germany, and Germans are supposed to be rather well-organized , think things through, and plan it out from every possible angle. It's hard to imagine them taking a "let's just do it and see what happens" approach.

Diametric
March 3rd, 2011, 07:52 PM
That was uncanny...

Maybe Ballmer and I just think alike. Creeeeeeeeepy. Couldn't be the case anyway. I'm too broke to be ANYTHING like Ballmer.

roggenschrotbrot
March 3rd, 2011, 08:30 PM
what is not mentioned in the article is that the decision apparently is not based on the migration being unsuccessful.
there was an official study (http://www.netzpolitik.org/2011/interne-dokumente-des-auswartigen-amtes-zur-anderung-der-open-source-strategie/#more-20730) on which strategy to follow in the future which not only called the migration success, but pretty much considers rolling back to windows the worst possible option.

its just politics, got nothing to do with common sense.

Diametric
March 3rd, 2011, 11:59 PM
what is not mentioned in the article is that the decision apparently is not based on the migration being unsuccessful.
there was an official study (http://www.netzpolitik.org/2011/interne-dokumente-des-auswartigen-amtes-zur-anderung-der-open-source-strategie/#more-20730) on which strategy to follow in the future which not only called the migration success, but pretty much considers rolling back to windows the worst possible option.

its just politics, got nothing to do with common sense.

Where did you get this info?

Opps. Didn't see the link...sorry.

smellyman
March 4th, 2011, 12:19 AM
it took them ten years on the server and five on the desktop to discover linux just wasn't their thing.

They release two interim reports that paint a picture of minor teething problems but of an ultimately successful transition.

So now they are going to rip everything out and go back to the solution that they discarded in the first place.

And microsoft's money had absolutely no influence on those people who were responsible for this decision.

Since it will probably be the german taxpayer that foots the bill i'm surprised so little has been said.

You could smell this in the vacuum of space.

this ^^^^^^


what is not mentioned in the article is that the decision apparently is not based on the migration being unsuccessful.
there was an official study (http://www.netzpolitik.org/2011/interne-dokumente-des-auswartigen-amtes-zur-anderung-der-open-source-strategie/#more-20730) on which strategy to follow in the future which not only called the migration success, but pretty much considers rolling back to windows the worst possible option.

its just politics, got nothing to do with common sense.

and this^^^^^^

LowSky
March 4th, 2011, 12:41 AM
otoh, it is Germany, and Germans are supposed to be rather well-organized , think things through, and plan it out from every possible angle. It's hard to imagine them taking a "let's just do it and see what happens" approach.

Positive or negative stereotyping is bad.

All organizations need to use what works. Vendors try to sell whole service packages. When Germany's government went out for bids on work for the next new line of office computers, they may have found the Windows option to be cheaper.

FOSS can't always win, to be fair less people are trained to operate *nix environments which means those people can charge more for labor. Finding those people is harder as education is centered to popular software, like Windows.

MisterGaribaldi
March 4th, 2011, 01:14 AM
Positive or negative stereotyping is bad.
Stereotyping isn't all bad. It sure saves on time! :P


All organizations need to use what works. Vendors try to sell whole service packages. When Germany's government went out for bids on work for the next new line of office computers, they may have found the Windows option to be cheaper.Well, I suppose SuSE is a vendor in the same sense as Dell/HP/etc. vis a vis having a for-profit OS product and associated platform. However, Linux isn't really anything like Windows or Mac OS X in that sense.


FOSS can't always win, to be fair less people are trained to operate *nix environments which means those people can charge more for labor.First off, it's "fewer", not "less", people, because people are discrete quantities. You cannot have 2.1675 people. You either have 2 people or you have 3 people.

Secondly, putting aside availability of specific types or calibers of applications, HW support, or that sort of thing, Linux should be far less costly to operate because of the greatly reduced security liability it is than Windows is or has ever been, most especially WinXP. Then again, people in Germany seem to think it's acceptable to give their government tons in tax money each year, so I guess the German government feels obligated to actually spend some of it. :o

KiwiNZ
March 4th, 2011, 01:51 AM
Everyday in IT sales around the World IBM will lose a deal to HP, HP will lose a deal to IBM. Oracle will lose a deal to Microsoft and Microsoft will lose a deal to IBM.

It is business, the circle of IT life so to speak, no deep an dark conspiracy. No dark back room clandestine meetings in dark suits.

Linux will win some Linux will lose some, thats life, thats all. This time it was a loss, learn from it.

phrostbyte
March 4th, 2011, 04:26 AM
As hard a pill that it maybe to swallow, but the answer is quite simple. Linux is ready for the Server.
It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop market, I have said this many times.

For the Enterprise Market it is simple "why make IT harder than it has to be" and Linux does just that.

Wow. I hope people don't confuse you for a Canonical employee. :D

KiwiNZ
March 4th, 2011, 04:33 AM
Wow. I hope people don't confuse you for a Canonical employee. :D

Canonical is not in New Zealand :wink:

I no longer work in IT

koenn
March 4th, 2011, 04:42 PM
Positive or negative stereotyping is bad.
PC is overrated
some stereotypes are based in reality.
tongue in cheek (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tongue-in-cheek)


All organizations need to use what works. Vendors try to sell whole service packages. When Germany's government went out for bids on work for the next new line of office computers, they may have found the Windows option to be cheaper.

FOSS can't always win, to be fair less people are trained to operate *nix environments which means those people can charge more for labor. Finding those people is harder as education is centered to popular software, like Windows.
Not sure if this was directed at me since I see no relation with what I posted, but in any case, price/cost alone is seldom the deciding factor in IT purchases/decisions.

That, and you're just speculating. The lack of information about the rationale behind this decision is exactly what makes this case frustrating : a missed opportunity (for the Linux and Open Source communities) to learn lessons about this type of migrations.
The few documents that are circulating seem to hint at hardware compatibility issues, interoperability issues, and user dissatisfaction. Precisely the sort of thing one would expect to be largely mitigated in a managed environment with the right sort of preparation (see earlier post), so more details on why exactly this didn't work out well would be pretty interesting.

MisterGaribaldi
March 4th, 2011, 05:06 PM
Usually there are concessions and/or kickbacks in large IT purchases, and particularly where government buys are concerned, there are almost certainly kickbacks to government workers and/or politicians who are tied to it. And, if you think I'm wearing some kind of tin-foil hat here, then answer me this:

Microsoft has not fared so well in anti-trust and other inquiries made by the E.U., which traditionally (at least in modern times) has been more favorable towards an open-source and, if we can be honest here, non-U.S.-centric vendors. Germany is part of the E.U. Don't you think it would make sense that E.U. member nation politicians would otherwise (all else being equal) have general leanings in the same direction?

I'm not saying that outcome equals proof, and I fully admit there are many unknowns here, but going with Microsoft-based solutions seems consistent with vendor S.O.P. in this particular case. Whether that "vendor" is Dell/HP/etc., or that vendor is Microsoft (and here I would suggest it's at least 50/50) doesn't really make much difference given the actual outcome.

Hyporeal
March 4th, 2011, 05:16 PM
Linux will win some Linux will lose some, thats life, thats all. This time it was a loss, learn from it.

You don't know that. Maybe they'll change their mind again and go ahead with the transition. No one can say for sure.

Without any data or analysis to support the decision, there's really nothing to do but speculate. I find your speculation no better or worse than any other speculation in this thread.

One thing, however, is certain: The German people are the real losers in this, since they have to foot the bill for what appears to be unbelievably bad planning and lack of foresight.

MisterGaribaldi
March 4th, 2011, 05:34 PM
... since they have to foot the bill for what appears to be unbelievably bad planning and lack of foresight.

Oh what a shock. Government does something short-sighted and/or stupid? Call the news media!

NCLI
March 4th, 2011, 05:39 PM
Oh what a shock. Government does something short-sighted and/or stupid? Call the news media!
Please don't confuse your mess of a government with our generally efficient European variation ;)

Zero2Nine
March 4th, 2011, 06:03 PM
Please don't confuse your mess of a government with our generally efficient European variation ;)

In Denmark maybe. The Dutch government is also quite good in messing up IT projects and wasting lots of money on them... On the other hand this provides a lot of work for consultancy firms who can then write reports about what went wrong.

alexfish
March 4th, 2011, 06:27 PM
In Denmark maybe. The Dutch government is also quite good in messing up IT projects and wasting lots of money on them... On the other hand this provides a lot of work for consultancy firms who can then write reports about what went wrong.

a view of consultancy firms

http://www.linkedin.com/answers/management/organizational-development/MGM_ODV/604334-3973715

but this is of interest

http://www.microsoft.com/ebc/brussels.mspx

and on the doorstep

http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/labs/emic/visit.aspx

KiwiNZ
March 4th, 2011, 07:24 PM
You don't know that. Maybe they'll change their mind again and go ahead with the transition. No one can say for sure.

Without any data or analysis to support the decision, there's really nothing to do but speculate. I find your speculation no better or worse than any other speculation in this thread.

One thing, however, is certain: The German people are the real losers in this, since they have to foot the bill for what appears to be unbelievably bad planning and lack of foresight.

You replied to my statement "Linux will win some Linux will lose some, thats life, thats all. This time it was a loss, learn from it" that I don't know that , I suggest you re read the thread. They have dropped Linux on the desk top. That is a Loss for Linux so my statement is correct.

Hyporeal
March 4th, 2011, 11:22 PM
You replied to my statement "Linux will win some Linux will lose some, thats life, thats all. This time it was a loss, learn from it" that I don't know that , I suggest you re read the thread. They have dropped Linux on the desk top. That is a Loss for Linux so my statement is correct.

Let's not argue about the semantics of the word "loss", and let's not make condescending (and trite) calls to reread the thread. My point is this: You think that we should learn something from this announcement, presumably that Linux is not ready for the enterprise desktop (which you claimed earlier), but there's no more reason to believe that than there is to believe the theory about Microsoft pulling strings. It's all speculation, and one is as bad as the other.

MisterGaribaldi
March 4th, 2011, 11:33 PM
@Hyporeal:

It isn't necessarily a matter of Microsoft pulling strings, though that might be the case. Politicians the world over, and government workers too, frequently get bought and paid for to make these sort of decisions.

It is also the case that there is much to be desired vis a vis Linux in the desktop. All of these points have merit, and so, frankly, does what KiwiNZ said.

earthpigg
March 5th, 2011, 01:18 AM
Positive or negative stereotyping is bad.

Still relevant. The German decision makers, themselves possible more aware of how Germans are viewed by foreigners being that they work for the Foreign Office, are more likely to be affected by stereotype threat.

Denying and rejecting stereotypes may be a good thing, but denying stereotype threat (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stereotype_threat) is a counterproductive.

If you want to make 100 of X do an overall poorer job at Y, all you need to do is remind them that they are X, and their brains themselves will fill in the part about there being a stereotype (positive or negative) about X doing Y, anxiety will activate across the board, and there will be results.

If the decision makers became aware that "the world is watching you Germans and your experiment involving organizational ability, forward planning, and computing", that is all it would take for them to overall become poorer at exactly those things if they felt (consciously or unconsciously) a stereotype existed about Germans doing any/all of those things. Human Stereotype Threat is just as much a scientific fact as gravity or supply & demand.

So, yes, in my opinion it is important to acknowledge this stuff if we are trying to figure out how the German Foreign Office came to the decision they came to.

Conclusion: Non-German Linux zealots sending e-mails to politicians and other employees may actually have been part of the result we see here. Maybe a small part, maybe a large part. This wasn't a controlled experiment, so no way to quantify.


Dear Mr. German Decision Maker, thank you for choosing Linux and showing the world that Germans are great at Y. Signed, your friendly Non-German.

BAM, you just made him one small iota crappier at Y for Z amount of time. I wonder how many such e-mails where sent.


A businessman once told me that, at the start of negotiations with a businesswoman, he will intentionally find a way to remind her that she is female. Compliment her purse for it's stylishness, whatever, to activate stereotype threat. He said that he feels it works.


Slightly off topic at this point, but we really should put all questions about race/gender (possibly even name) at the end of standardized tests - or get rid of everything but name & grade entirely.

ikt
March 5th, 2011, 12:44 PM
tinfoil hat anyone?

Nope, just reality. :)


It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop market, I have said this many times.

Repeating something doesn't make it true :p



For the Enterprise Market it is simple "why make IT harder than it has to be" and Linux does just that.

Except when it doesn't.

RiceMonster
March 5th, 2011, 02:17 PM
Nope, just reality. :)



Repeating something doesn't make it true :p



Except when it doesn't.

Good arguments you've got there. I'm sold.

alexan
March 6th, 2011, 06:19 PM
Germany foreigner office is willing to pay for every OS license, Software license multiplied on every PC: Germany tax payers problem :P

Elsewhere in the world there's fewer money... and more successful linux stories. When you got money... you feel less likely to solve problems: you want just the "solution". :popcorn:

Hardware support: choice better your hardware, companies like IBM support linux 100%.
Training costs to new opensource software: bulls**t. Those who can learn to play Modern Warfare 2 coming from Medal of Honour 2 can learn to make bold text and tables the same way they come from MSOFFICE to OpenOffice.


Again, when you have money.. you don't look for the best deal; just the first thing come under your hand. It's like go to car re-seller and buy the first, !great!, car you see at the entrance.

ikt
March 6th, 2011, 06:50 PM
Germany foreigner office is willing to pay for every OS license, Software license multiplied on every PC: Germany tax payers problem :P

Exactly, in addition to the money issue a lot of times there is no incentive to switch to linux, in fact in a lot of enterprise's there's no incentive to move to anything at all, does all the software work? yes? lets leave it at that.

Which is why you'll find many companies running vastly outdated operating systems and browsers/applications.

ikt
March 6th, 2011, 07:12 PM
Good arguments you've got there. I'm sold.

Which parts do you specifically believe aren't good arguments:

- That microsoft do try and get involved in large governments and companies

- That repeating something ad nausem doesn't make it true

- That saying (paraphrasing) that linux/ubuntu on the desktop makes IT a lot harder and that is something enterprises don't want, isn't true 100% of the time.

For example, even in the article itself:


We've covered the concept of national adoption of Linux at a government level a couple of times before, but this is one of the first cases of a government moving back the other way.

supports that in a lot of cases, moving to linux on the desktop can make IT easier.

Swagman
March 6th, 2011, 07:14 PM
You'd think they'd spell Centre correctly for the European market.

KiwiNZ
March 6th, 2011, 07:37 PM
Nope, just reality. :)



Repeating something doesn't make it true :p



Except when it doesn't.

I guess you are right, and that is why we are witnessing an avalanche of Corporations and Public Sector Organizations switching to Linux on the Desktop.

Dustin2128
March 6th, 2011, 09:12 PM
I guess you are right, and that is why we are witnessing an avalanche of Corporations and Public Sector Organizations switching to Linux on the Desktop.
He's just saying that what you've said isn't always true. Hardware, software, and IT departments permitting, linux is easily ready for enterprise desktops.

KiwiNZ
March 6th, 2011, 09:27 PM
He's just saying that what you've said isn't always true. Hardware, software, and IT departments permitting, linux is easily ready for enterprise desktops.

True

But what size infrastructure?
Success rate?
And does it remain on the desktop?

The percentage of successful migrations is still very low. The weight of evidence still supports the argument that Linux is still not ready for the Large Enterprise Desktop. SME's may have a slightly higher success rate
but this is not noticeably greater.

Dustin2128
March 6th, 2011, 10:07 PM
True

But what size infrastructure?
Success rate?
And does it remain on the desktop?

The percentage of successful migrations is still very low. The weight of evidence still supports the argument that Linux is still not ready for the Large Enterprise Desktop. SME's may have a slightly higher success rate
but this is not noticeably greater.
Like I said though, hardware, software, and IT permitting. It is a pretty low success margin, but you almost always have one of the three not cooperating. Still, making progress, albeit slowly.

koenn
March 6th, 2011, 10:25 PM
... stereotype threat.

(positive or negative) about X doing Y, anxiety will activate across the board, and there will be results.

If the decision makers became aware that "the world is watching you Germans and your experiment involving organizational ability, forward planning, and computing", that is all it would take for them to overall become poorer at exactly those things if they felt (consciously or unconsciously) a stereotype existed about Germans doing any/all of those things.

Hm.
I thought things like this worked more along lines of "people behave the way you expect them to" - like a self-fulfilling prophecy. So (negative) stereotypes would tend to make people perform worse, but positive expectations would make them do better.

ikt
March 6th, 2011, 10:26 PM
I guess you are right, and that is why we are witnessing an avalanche of Corporations and Public Sector Organizations switching to Linux on the Desktop.

:/

As I said earlier, upgrade apathy is very heavy in most users, but it is extremely heavy in the enterprise in particular, there needs to be an extremely strong case to move to anything at all (note that they are moving BACK to windows XP, not forward to windows 7).


"This looks like a top-down decision, the kind that gets made when one or more of M$'s salesmen visit the head-office," blogger Robert Pogson opined. "Previous studies showed the GNU/Linux desktops were economical and effective. Suddenly, with only hand-waving as evidence, a contrary conclusion results."

http://www.linuxinsider.com/story/Pain-and-Suffering-in-Germany-or-How-Linux-Lost-to-XP-71983.html

I contribute the possible reasoning of this not working being to several key areas,

a) ms rep coming in, selling it to someone higher up, who then forces it on the IT people (happens frequently)
b) IT staff not being experienced enough, making many vital mistakes(happens frequently)
c) There really was 'Efficiency Gains'? in going back to xp (not very likely) in particular the "printer drivers" issue they faced should have been accounted for, this might be because of: b)

weasel fierce
March 6th, 2011, 10:37 PM
I wonder what the general feeling would be, if the US government decided to rely in large or entirety on a proprietary French or German operating system and software.

Dr. C
March 7th, 2011, 12:46 AM
I wonder what the general feeling would be, if the US government decided to rely in large or entirety on a proprietary French or German operating system and software.

It can be a serious threat to national security when a when a corporation based outside of your country can shut down or significantly cripple the software running on say 85% or more of the computers in both the public and private sectors as currently the case with Microsoft Windows for countries other than the United States.

koenn
March 7th, 2011, 06:51 PM
just thinking out loud :

If it's a problem for a country to have its computing infrastructure coming from a "foreign" company,
what makes a company foreign ? Or in this case, what makes Microsoft "American" ?
And what reason is there to assume that the interests of Microsoft align with the interests of (the people, the government,... of) the US ? And if they don't, what reason is there to believe that MS will act in the best interest of the US rather than in the best interest of Microsoft and its shareholders ?
Isn't it then also not a problem if that such company is publicly traded worldwide - is there any way of knowing who its shareholders are, or, say, to prevent a couple of rich Japanese (or whatever other nationality) to acquire a majority share, or even just a controlling share, and would you still consider it a "US" company then ?

mkendall
March 8th, 2011, 02:15 AM
Board of Directors get picked up, put in maximum security prison, and charged with treason.

Dr. C
March 8th, 2011, 02:57 AM
just thinking out loud :

If it's a problem for a country to have its computing infrastructure coming from a "foreign" company,
what makes a company foreign ? Or in this case, what makes Microsoft "American" ?
And what reason is there to assume that the interests of Microsoft align with the interests of (the people, the government,... of) the US ? And if they don't, what reason is there to believe that MS will act in the best interest of the US rather than in the best interest of Microsoft and its shareholders ?
Isn't it then also not a problem if that such company is publicly traded worldwide - is there any way of knowing who its shareholders are, or, say, to prevent a couple of rich Japanese (or whatever other nationality) to acquire a majority share, or even just a controlling share, and would you still consider it a "US" company then ?

What makes Microsoft a US Corporation? Where it is incorporated for starters: http://www.sos.wa.gov/corps/search_detail.aspx?ubi=600413485

earthpigg
March 8th, 2011, 05:29 AM
One note on one similar to KiwiNZ,

For those of us that haven't had OS X or Win installed in years, our opinion is probably less valid than those that have been using the latest and greatest of the competition.

My knowledge about how good or bad windows-on-the-desktop is dates from Pre-Service Pack Vista -- for me to pretend to have any idea how great or horrible Win7 is would be rediculous. My total time clicking around on a win7 desktop is under two hours.

My knowledge about how good or bad the latest release of OS X is, is even more limited. I don't even know what the current numerical version of OS X is -- just that I think it's something past 10.4.

Ergo, I of all people can not say "Ubuntu is great in comparison to Windows 7 and OS X", because I've never really used either. Pre-SP Vista is ancient history.

We need folks that still use OS X and Windows around/involved that are also involved/aware of how those software stacks are doing.

earthpigg
March 8th, 2011, 05:38 AM
just thinking out loud :

If it's a problem for a country to have its computing infrastructure coming from a "foreign" company,
what makes a company foreign ? Or in this case, what makes Microsoft "American" ?
And what reason is there to assume that the interests of Microsoft align with the interests of (the people, the government,... of) the US ? And if they don't, what reason is there to believe that MS will act in the best interest of the US rather than in the best interest of Microsoft and its shareholders ?
Isn't it then also not a problem if that such company is publicly traded worldwide - is there any way of knowing who its shareholders are, or, say, to prevent a couple of rich Japanese (or whatever other nationality) to acquire a majority share, or even just a controlling share, and would you still consider it a "US" company then ?

Conspiracy theory incoming. Not saying it's viable or realistic, just sharing the existence of a theory.

Microsoft needs theoretical permission from the EU/Russia/China/etc to do business in those nations.

Microsoft does need permission from the US Gov't to exist.

If the EU/Russia/etc has dirt on Ballmer or board members, then the board members can be exposed and embarrassed.

Not only is the FBI/CIA/etc more likely to have dirt on the mostly American board of Directors of Microsoft, but they can also throw them in jail and redistribute their wealth without their consent.

Ergo: If the EU says "don't have a secret evil conspiracy backdoor in Windows" and the US gov't says "do have one, and give us the key"... Ballmer + Board have more incentive to listen to the US Secret Evil Government Agent types than the EU/Russia/Chinese ones.

That is a grossly exaggerated version of the claim being hinted at.

The only evidence of this that I am aware of is that one of the thousands of registry keys in MS Windows happens to have a three letter name that coincides with one of the hundreds of three letter agencies in the US Gov't and - in this case - it happens to be one of the Big Four of US Intelligence operations. Some look at that and say "coincidence", others look at it and say "conspiracy".

It reminds me of this sign, a sign that does actually exist (just like the registry key):
http://russelldavies.typepad.com/planning/images/secret_nuclear_bunker-thumb.jpg
You can make a right turn all you want, you won't be finding anything that is both 'secret' and a 'nuclear bunker'.

(at this point, let's avoid any discussion that would involve demanding that anyone prove a negative. if you want to have that discussion, please see the discussion page here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prove_a_negative). What may be happening at inner circles of certain governments, though, seems to be exactly such a conversation.

Minister1: "Microsoft has a backdoor in Windows for the US Gov't to destroy our economy when it feels like it!"
Minister2: "No, it doesn't. There is no reason to believe that."
Minister1: "OH YEAH?! Prove it! You have no proof, and you want us to bet our nations future on that? They could have a backdoor, and you can't prove that they don't. So, unless you can prove a negative, we must assume there is a backdoor and stop using Windows immediately."
Minister2: "...")

dmn_clown
March 8th, 2011, 05:52 AM
The percentage of successful migrations is still very low.

Depends on what they are migrating from.


The weight of evidence still supports the argument that Linux is still not ready for the Large Enterprise Desktop. SME's may have a slightly higher success rate
but this is not noticeably greater.

Meh, depends on what they are trying to do. For office work, no. For other things, yes.

As for me, I am glad I am not a German Citizen having to pay taxes to cover the costs of these massive blunders in inefficient IT.

beew
March 8th, 2011, 05:58 AM
True

But what size infrastructure?
Success rate?
And does it remain on the desktop?

The percentage of successful migrations is still very low. The weight of evidence still supports the argument that Linux is still not ready for the Large Enterprise Desktop. SME's may have a slightly higher success rate
but this is not noticeably greater.


Well impression makes reality sometimes. If everyone follows that kind of reasoning I guess anything new will never be ready. There is a curious Hagelian sound to your way of thinking. Glad to hear that you have been with the forums in the beginning, you will need someone bolder to run Canonical. :)

My bank is still using Win2000 (is it still supported by MS?) Many financial institutions still use COBOL (so if you are a COBOL programmer you can get a cushy job for life, siince almost no one graduating with a comp sci degree in the last 10 years knows what the heck it is, I have to look up the Wikipedia to find out what it is ) You know who are the biggest consumers for floppy disks these days? No, not Linux geeks playing with 15 year old computers. But car and machine manufacturers because they had invested heavily in machines that were state of the art twenty years ago and they are still using them. Talk about oh so demanding enterprise needs.

Many big institutions are very technologically stagnant and they are slow to switch not because the alternatives are not "ready", but because they are not.

KiwiNZ
March 8th, 2011, 06:03 AM
Well impression makes reality sometimes. If everyone follows that kind of reasoning I guess anything new will never be ready. There is a curious Hagelian sound to your way of thinking. Glad to hear that you have been with the forums in the beginning, you will need someone bolder to run Canonical. :)

My bank is still using Win2000 (is it even supported by MS?) Talk about oh so demanding enterprise needs.

It is crazy that these organisations are still using Win2K, but banks are ultra conservative.

beew
March 8th, 2011, 06:17 AM
BTW, my bank is the largest one in Canada so it is not some small operation that would collapse and take your money with them.

mikewhatever
March 8th, 2011, 06:24 AM
Hey Kiwi, I was wondering, if Linux is not ready for the enterprise, how does Red Had manage to grow in double digits quarter after quarter? I know you are an IT pro, can you give us some details.

Dr. C
March 8th, 2011, 07:05 AM
Well impression makes reality sometimes. If everyone follows that kind of reasoning I guess anything new will never be ready. There is a curious Hagelian sound to your way of thinking. Glad to hear that you have been with the forums in the beginning, you will need someone bolder to run Canonical. :)

My bank is still using Win2000 (is it still supported by MS?) Many financial institutions still use COBOL (so if you are a COBOL programmer you can get a cushy job for life, siince almost no one graduating with a comp sci degree in the last 10 years knows what the heck it is, I have to look up the Wikipedia to find out what it is ) You know who are the biggest consumers for floppy disks these days? No, not Linux geeks playing with 15 year old computers. But car and machine manufacturers because they had invested heavily in machines that were state of the art twenty years ago and they are still using them. Talk about oh so demanding enterprise needs.

Many big institutions are very technologically stagnant and they are slow to switch not because the alternatives are not "ready", but because they are not.

It is not as much that enterprises are not technologically ready or that they are conservative but rather than the increase in productivity is simply not there to justify the expense of the upgrade. Are bank employees suddenly going to become that more productive by migrating from Windows 2000 to Windows 7? Why then should the bank upgrade the software? Leaving GNU / Linux for the moment aside, the push for the upgrade is for the most part external Microsoft pushing for the upgrade while the enterprise is delaying as much as possible knowing that every delay means significant cost savings.

GNU / Linux is ready for the enterprise desktop now, but do not expect a significant penetration for the next 5-10 years for many reasons quite unrelated to how appropriate GNU / Linux is for the enterprise desktop.

It was only a few years ago the my bank also in Canada was using OS/2 by the way. They are now on XP with no Vista or 7 in sight.

KiwiNZ
March 8th, 2011, 07:11 AM
Hey Kiwi, I was wondering, if Linux is not ready for the enterprise, how does Red Had manage to grow in double digits quarter after quarter? I know you are an IT pro, can you give us some details.

You are mis-quoting me. I have stated "It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop"

I maybe wrong but my understanding of Redhats' income streams the majority of their revenue is from server ,middleware and managed solutions cloud etc.

beew
March 8th, 2011, 07:15 AM
It is not as much that enterprises are not technologically ready or that they are conservative but rather than the increase in productivity is simply not there to justify the expense of the upgrade. Are bank employees suddenly going to become that more productive by migrating from Windows 2000 to Windows 7? Why then should the bank upgrade the software? Leaving GNU / Linux for the moment aside, the push for the upgrade is for the most part external Microsoft pushing for the upgrade while the enterprise is delaying as much as possible knowing that every delay means significant cost savings.

GNU / Linux is ready for the enterprise desktop now, but do not expect a significant penetration for the next 5-10 years for many reasons quite unrelated to how appropriate GNU / Linux is for the enterprise desktop.

It was only a few years ago the my bank also in Canada was using OS/2 by the way. They are now on XP with no Vista or 7 in sight.

I understand what you're saying and I would agree, but Kiwi gives the impression that Linux is technologically not ready for enterprises based on penetration rate, which is a fallacious argument with hole so big that you can drive a truck through, in a lot of cases it is the enterprises that are not ready, for the reasons that you mentioned, among others.

Well at least your bank has XP, it must be cutting edge in the industry. :)

KiwiNZ
March 8th, 2011, 07:22 AM
I understand what you're saying and I would agree, but Kiwi gives the impression that Linux is technologically not ready for enterprises based on penetration rate, which is a fallacious argument with hole so big that you can drive a truck through, in a lot of cases it is the enterprises that are not ready, for the reasons that you mentioned, among others.

Well at least your bank has XP, it must be cutting edge in the industry. :)

Linux itself maybe ready for the Enterprise Desktop from a technology perspective, and again I stress I am talking about the Desktop here , but the fragmentation is one , and I note one of the obstacles blocking Enterprise uptake.

As for Enterprise Server, Linux is already doing very well in this market.

MisterGaribaldi
March 8th, 2011, 07:58 AM
@koenn, et al...

I'm not really sure what you folks' point(s) are in trying to suggest KiwiNZ (or anyone else) commenting on the ills of this are, in fact, tin-foil hat wearing conspiracy theorists. In fact, what KiwiNZ, myself, and others here are saying and suggesting has its roots in entirely practical and sound considerations.

In the first place, any company founded and operated in the United States is by definition a U.S. corporation. Period. Attempting to suggest such a definition is invalid is itself utterly ridiculous and invalid. Is a corporation founded and operated in New Zealand, but with locations / stores / etc. in Paris or Milan or New York or Toronto somehow not a New Zealand corporation?

In the second place, and actually to the more relevant points raised, there are two very sound reasons why Germany should reconsider migrating to Windows. Mind you, of course, that I understand that there can be considerable technological benefits (based on needs, etc.) but there are two disadvantages, and they are these:

1. If Microsoft were to become insolvent or should otherwise experience a collapse or other issues, continued support for Windows Desktop and Windows Server could become impractical or impossible. This is ALWAYS a potential issue whenever a given product or service is single-vendor sourced.

2. If the country a company is based in (the U.S. for Microsoft) should suffer an economic or political (or both) collapse or other catastrophic event, then that company could find itself no longer able to remain in operation. It may or may not be practically possible for it to move out of that country, and this could have the same basic negative consequences for continued support and development of that product.

In both of these cases, this disruption and/or destruction of support and future development becomes very significant when it has to do with a society's infrastructure, whether this is for businesses of that country, citizens and/or "the day-to-day" of that country, or that country's government. Infrastructure is infrastructure, and whether that's a highly ubiquitous operating system, one or multiple applications, or it's a road/bridge/etc., disruption can have serious negative effects.

Now, you can add the more esoteric things associated with NSA or CIA (or what-have-you) involvement to the mix, but I think everything I said above is already quite sufficient without adding anything else to it.

beew
March 8th, 2011, 08:40 AM
In addition to cost and the dubious wisdom (or lack of it )of counting on the support from one single company on a such a vitally strategic area (computing), national security should also be relevant factor to consider before switching back to MS, since we are talking about the foreign office after all.

Here is an interesting read.
http://arstechnica.com/security/news/2010/06/cyber-war-microsoft-a-weak-link-in-national-security.ars
(http://arstechnica.com/security/news/2010/06/cyber-war-microsoft-a-weak-link-in-national-security.ars)
This seems particularly relevant.


The former White House advisor cites the 1997 USS Yorktown incident as a consequence. The Ticonderoga-class ship's whole operational network was retrofitted with Windows NT. "When the Windows system crashed, as Windows often does, the cruiser became a floating i-brick, dead in the water."
In response to this "and a legion of other failures," the government began looking into the Linux operating system. The Pentagon could "slice and dice" this open source software, pick and choose the components it needed, and more easily eliminate bugs.
Clarke says that, in response:
[Microsoft] went on the warpath against Linux to slow the adoption of it by government committees, including by Bill Gates. Nevertheless, because there were government agencies using Linux, I asked NSA to do an assessment of it. In a move that startled the open-source community, NSA joined that community by publicly offering fixes to the Linux operating system that would improve its security. Microsoft gave me the very clear impression that if the US government promoted Linux, Microsoft would stop cooperating with the US government. While that did not faze me, it may have had an effect on others. Microsoft's software is still being bought by most federal agencies, even though Linux is free. The company took a similarly hard line towards the banking and financial industry, Cyber War says, rebuffing access requests from security specialists for Microsoft code. When banks threatened to use Linux, Microsoft urged them to wait for its next operating system—Vista.
"Microsoft insiders have admitted to me that the company really did not take security seriously, even when they were being embarrassed by frequent highly publicized hacks," Clarke confides. Sure enough, when Apple and Linux began to offer serious competition, Microsoft upgraded quality in recent years. But what the company did first was to lobby against higher government security standards.
"Microsoft can buy a lot of spokesmen and lobbyists for a fraction of the cost of creating more secure systems," concludes Clarke's section on the software firm. "They are one of several dominant companies in the cyber industry for whom life is good right now and change may be bad."


I have not done any scholarly research on the claims made, but they don't sound outlandish.

mikewhatever
March 8th, 2011, 08:55 AM
You are mis-quoting me. I have stated "It is NOT ready for the Enterprise Desktop"

I maybe wrong but my understanding of Redhats' income streams the majority of their revenue is from server ,middleware and managed solutions cloud etc.

My apologies, Kiwi, didn't realize I misquoted you. ...but back to the question, how do Andalusia, French Police and Finnish schools manage to deploy linux desktop if it's not ready? Do they have better IT professionals or just different needs?

KiwiNZ
March 8th, 2011, 08:59 AM
I would also like to state that I would dearly love to see Linux to become stronger on the Enterprise Desktop and the Domestic desktop. That is why I have devoted quite a number of years to it and quite a number of years and countless hours to Ubuntu and Ubuntu Forums.

However there needs to be changes, a lot. One of the main changes that needs to happen is the number of distributions needs to reduce dramatically. I believe there needs to be a few strong Companies Marketing Linux to the Enterprise like Redhat,Canonical and a few more. The fragmentation is counter productive to the expansion of Linux into the Enterprise Sector.

I also believe in strong competition and see no issue with Apple and Microsoft being strong in the market place. Both produce good products and have contributed well to the industry both with technology and people.

There has been no significant growth of Linux on he Desktop for several years now, Linux can grow on the Desktop but not as it is now.

kvant
March 8th, 2011, 05:13 PM
However there needs to be changes, a lot. One of the main changes that needs to happen is the number of distributions needs to reduce dramatically. I believe there needs to be a few strong Companies Marketing Linux to the Enterprise like Redhat,Canonical and a few more. The fragmentation is counter productive to the expansion of Linux into the Enterprise Sector.



How exactly does a large number of distros hurt desktop GNU/Linux in your opinion?

Also, I use Debian, it's made by a large group of individuals and there's no "strong Company" pushing it and I'm pretty happy to run it as my desktop OS. Are you saying that only a "strong Company" can accomplish something large with the desktop GNU/Linux?

sydbat
March 8th, 2011, 05:39 PM
Two things...

1)
BTW, my bank is the largest one in Canada so it is not some small operation that would collapse and take your money with them.If you are talking about the Royal Bank (one of my banks as well) then you have made false assumptions. They do not use Win2k.

Their main Operating Systems are from IBM. For their ATM's they use OS2 Warp. For their tellers, other IBM Banking Solutions (http://www-935.ibm.com/services/us/gbs/bus/html/bcs_banking.html). Their Online Banking services are run from IBM servers.

For their office workers, they use Microsoft products, mostly WinXP, but there are some Windows Vista and 7 boxes out there. Nowhere is Win2k used anymore.

Scotiabank, on the other hand, is more Windows-centric, but their ATM's also use OS2 Warp. However, their tellers use some type of Microsoft banking software, and their Online Banking is run on a Windows Server platform (all of which is properly configured and maintained, so stop yourself before making asinine judgments about the security of Scotiabank or the ability of those running alternative OS's to do online banking).

2) To those attacking KiwiNZ in this thread - While I do not always agree with KiwiNZ, I have a lot of respect for his perspectives. Just because he has a differing (and often balanced) opinion than you, it is very uncool to intimate anything untoward about his standing in this community or anything else. Stop it.

Paqman
March 8th, 2011, 06:01 PM
How exactly does a large number of distros hurt desktop GNU/Linux in your opinion?


Duplication of effort, and a lack of leadership. If you split your available manpower up into lots of little teams that don't necessarily talk to each other much or have complimentary goals then you can't expect to produce the same output as a smaller number of more focussed ones.

Granted, that relies on the bigger projects being well led (*cough* Nokia *cough*) but at least in theory you have a bigger pool to recruit and train your management talent from.

In short: it's easier to effectively manage people that are on your team than people who are on someone else's.

beew
March 8th, 2011, 06:39 PM
Two things...

1) If you are talking about the Royal Bank (one of my banks as well) then you have made false assumptions. They do not use Win2k.

Their main Operating Systems are from IBM. For their ATM's they use OS2 Warp. For their tellers, other IBM Banking Solutions (http://www-935.ibm.com/services/us/gbs/bus/html/bcs_banking.html). Their Online Banking services are run from IBM servers.

For their office workers, they use Microsoft products, mostly WinXP, but there are some Windows Vista and 7 boxes out there. Nowhere is Win2k used anymore.

Scotiabank, on the other hand, is more Windows-centric, but their ATM's also use OS2 Warp. However, their tellers use some type of Microsoft banking software, and their Online Banking is run on a Windows Server platform (all of which is properly configured and maintained, so stop yourself before making asinine judgments about the security of Scotiabank or the ability of those running alternative OS's to do online banking).

2) To those attacking KiwiNZ in this thread - While I do not always agree with KiwiNZ, I have a lot of respect for his perspectives. Just because he has a differing (and often balanced) opinion than you, it is very uncool to intimate anything untoward about his standing in this community or anything else. Stop it.

It is the CIBC

sydbat
March 8th, 2011, 06:42 PM
It is the CIBCUm...CIBC is, at best, in 4th place behind Royal, Scotia and BMO.

beew
March 8th, 2011, 07:14 PM
Um...CIBC is, at best, in 4th place behind Royal, Scotia and BMO.

Is that true? I always think it is the biggest. But no matter, there are only 5 in Canada and they are all big. This is just a tangent.The point I made was clear and it still stands, that enterprises often are not the hub for cutting edge technology, so the fact that they are slow in adopting Linux (and the newer incarnations of Windows for that mattter) is no proof that Linux is not ready, it is just that they are not, whether because of fear of change, cost benefit calculations or inertia, and of course big vendors such as MS could be peddling some influences to undercut competitors, see my link.

koenn
March 8th, 2011, 10:11 PM
@koenn, et al...

I'm not really sure what you folks' point(s) are in trying to suggest KiwiNZ (or anyone else) commenting on the ills of this are, in fact, tin-foil hat wearing conspiracy theorists. In fact, what KiwiNZ, myself, and others here are saying and suggesting has its roots in entirely practical and sound considerations..

I'm not quite sure why you're directing this at me.
I 'd appreciate you either quote or otherwise point out me "suggesting KiwiNZ (or anyone else) commenting on the ills of this are, in fact, tin-foil hat wearing conspiracy theorist", or withdraw that post.

(the rest of the incoherent ramblings, I'll just ignore)

mikewhatever
March 8th, 2011, 10:39 PM
How exactly does a large number of distros hurt desktop GNU/Linux in your opinion?

Also, I use Debian, it's made by a large group of individuals and there's no "strong Company" pushing it and I'm pretty happy to run it as my desktop OS. Are you saying that only a "strong Company" can accomplish something large with the desktop GNU/Linux?

Hardware compatibility problems was supposedly one of the reasons to drop Linux. While we don't know the particulars, it's not hard to guess what the problems were. Printers, scanners, wireless, graphics and sound cards, all require drivers, and hardware vendors probably aren't too excited about the prospect of writing and maintaining drivers for a hundred distros.

kvant
March 8th, 2011, 11:05 PM
Hardware compatibility problems was supposedly one of the reasons to drop Linux. While we don't know the particulars, it's not hard to guess what the problems were. Printers, scanners, wireless, graphics and sound cards, all require drivers, and hardware vendors probably aren't too excited about the prospect of writing and maintaining drivers for a hundred distros.

As far as I know, and I might be wrong, most of these drivers are in the kernel, so it's all the same, except for gfx drivers. I'm sure somebody else could explain it better.

kvant
March 8th, 2011, 11:07 PM
Duplication of effort, and a lack of leadership. If you split your available manpower up into lots of little teams that don't necessarily talk to each other much or have complimentary goals then you can't expect to produce the same output as a smaller number of more focussed ones.

Granted, that relies on the bigger projects being well led (*cough* Nokia *cough*) but at least in theory you have a bigger pool to recruit and train your management talent from.

In short: it's easier to effectively manage people that are on your team than people who are on someone else's.

Leadership (unique for all projects) can easily lead to corruption (in the broader sense of the word) and mistakes. It's like a dictatorship.

KiwiNZ
March 8th, 2011, 11:09 PM
Hardware compatibility problems was supposedly one of the reasons to drop Linux. While we don't know the particulars, it's not hard to guess what the problems were. Printers, scanners, wireless, graphics and sound cards, all require drivers, and hardware vendors probably aren't too excited about the prospect of writing and maintaining drivers for a hundred distros.

Printers , yes drivers issues would be an issue and scanners to a degree. Wireless ,hmmm depending on their use of Laptops by usually very small or they use 3g.

The vast majority of large Enterprise clients and use small form factor PC's e.g the Dell Optiplex 380 and the HP 8200 , (the later does offer Free DOS as an option) these units have very basic graphics requirements and sound requirements. The drivers for these are supplied off the shelf by Dell or HP as a package deal so as I say , why make I.T harder than it has to be and go chasing drivers etc and escalating costs and extending implementation time when you don't need to.Your Accountants won't appreciate it. Your staff won't appreciate it and your clients won't appreciate it.

The big compatibility issues are around applications and especially "in-house" applications and the need to interact with business partners and clients. As an example, ever received an email from someone using Lotus Notes? the message usually comes through a mess especially if they are using rich text or graphics.

With less fragmentation the industry can be more streamlined and targeted and the "go hunt for it" syndrome can be eliminated.

The key for Linux on the Desktop to get above the 1% is the Large Enterprise and SME sectors. We have been bashing away with the current formula now for 15 years + and are still at 1% that has to say that a change in approach is needed. Those advocating change are not anti Linux, they are pro Linux.

mikewhatever
March 8th, 2011, 11:53 PM
...

The big compatibility issues are around applications and especially "in-house" applications and the need to interact with business partners and clients. As an example, ever received an email from someone using Lotus Notes? the message usually comes through a mess especially if they are using rich text or graphics.

...

Yeah, apparently, you aren't the only one unhappy about Lotus Notes, however, I don't quite see how less fragmentation will help IBM fix it.
http://lotusnotessucks.4t.com/

KiwiNZ
March 9th, 2011, 12:16 AM
Yeah, apparently, you aren't the only one unhappy about Lotus Notes, however, I don't quite see how less fragmentation will help IBM fix it.
http://lotusnotessucks.4t.com/

Good greif, I used Lotus purely as an example of how an Application that is used by a very small percentage has issues interacting with others. So if you have a company that uses Lotus Notes and you are trying to email sales promotional material to clients that use Outlook or Apple Mail or Thunderbird they will receive it messed up. Now this applies to many Linux based Applications when it comes to interoperability.

sydbat
March 9th, 2011, 01:12 AM
With less fragmentation the industry can be more streamlined and targeted and the "go hunt for it" syndrome can be eliminated.

The key for Linux on the Desktop to get above the 1% is the Large Enterprise and SME sectors. We have been bashing away with the current formula now for 15 years + and are still at 1% that has to say that a change in approach is needed. Those advocating change are not anti Linux, they are pro Linux.OK...I have a REAL plan...

First we build this really big space station that has the mass of a small moon. Then, using the energy found all around us, we compel everyone to use one standardized system for everything or threaten their planets with destruction. Oh and remember to close that stupid exhaust port too.

Now, if I could only remember where those droids I was looking for went...wait...

Seriously though, it would almost take that kind of effort to get everyone on the same page. Till then...

beew
March 9th, 2011, 01:19 AM
Good greif, I used Lotus purely as an example of how an Application that is used by a very small percentage has issues interacting with others. So if you have a company that uses Lotus Notes and you are trying to email sales promotional material to clients that use Outlook or Apple Mail or Thunderbird they will receive it messed up. Now this applies to many Linux based Applications when it comes to interoperability.



I am not sure what you're trying to argue. Linux is not ready because most people don't use it and therefore there are compatibility problems, so as a result they shouldn't use it and go for something that most people use. Well then no matter what it does Linux would never be ready.

Do you see the circular nature of your argument?

The same can be said of any new invention, new idea, or just new way of doing things. They will never be "ready" simply because they are new and not the same as the old way, regardless of merit.

How about some leadership and vision, especially in the case of the public sector which is supposed to have a wider mandate than just bean counting for the immediate time frame?

The hardware problem is hard to believe, when they switched over to linux didn't they do research about compatible scanners, printers, etc? How come the French police and other institutions and enterprises that have switched to Linux are not crippled by it if the problem is inevitable?

Compatible hardware does exist and it is not difficult to find but you do need to do some research especially if you are going to spend a lot of money on it. Even newbies considering switching to Ubuntu know this, just check out all the threads querying about hardware on this forum. Also, as kvant said, the drivers are in the kernel and therefore it is the same for all distros, so what has fragmentation got to do with it?

Manufacturers will make drivers for Linux if more people use it, especially if thee are more big users like the public sector, the same goes with software supports. But the process has to start somewhere.

At the most basic level, a piece of Linux software is just source code, it is not distro dependent. The packaging is but it is not the case that creators of software have to write 500 versions because there are 500 distros.

KiwiNZ
March 9th, 2011, 01:29 AM
I am not sure what you're trying to argue. Linux is not ready because most people don't use it and therefore there are compatibility problems, so as a result they shouldn't use it and go for something that most people use. Well then no matter what it does Linux would never be ready.

Do you see the circular nature of your argument?

The same can be said of any new invention, new idea, or just new way of doing things. They will never be "ready" simply because they are new and not the same as the old way, regardless of merit.

How about some leadership and vision, especially in the case of the public sector which has a wider mandate than just bean counting for the immediate time frame.

.

So you are saying Linux is a "new" idea? hrmmmmmm OK

beew
March 9th, 2011, 01:35 AM
How about 'different' if you want to nitpick on chronology, but I suppose deploying desktop Linux for enterprise use is pretty new.

But you are not addressing my main points.

Paqman
March 9th, 2011, 12:40 PM
We have been bashing away with the current formula now for 15 years + and are still at 1% that has to say that a change in approach is needed. Those advocating change are not anti Linux, they are pro Linux.

This is hard to argue with. If we want it to see wider use we have to do something different from what's been done before, because it obviously ain't working. 1% is not even close to good enough, and we've been stuck there for way too long.

Servers have been a huge success for Linux, as have smartphones in just the last couple of years, but the desktop has been a flop. We need to be realistic about this.

mips
March 11th, 2011, 09:26 AM
Anyway, getting somewhat back on topic, why are some companies offering FreeDOS as an option? Doesn't it seem kind of- er... outdated? Or are we talking about for things like cash registers in businesses which often run software from the DOS/W3.1 era?

Because it's a free option for those not interested in windows and it's easier for the supplier to install. There also won't be compatibility issues with hardware as it supports very little out of the box and it need not seeing it's basically a command line os without GUI and fancy features.

disabledaccount
March 11th, 2011, 12:08 PM
This is hard to argue with. If we want it to see wider use we have to do something different from what's been done before, because it obviously ain't working. 1% is not even close to good enough, and we've been stuck there for way too long.

Servers have been a huge success for Linux, as have smartphones in just the last couple of years, but the desktop has been a flop. We need to be realistic about this.
This 1% isn't reliable and i thought everyone knows that. I can estimate that about 1/3 of my friends are using desktop distros, some of them still dual-booting to win. However it's not my intention to start that topic again.
All I want to say is: I'm not Canonical or RedHat employee, so I'm not interested in making linux dominant desktop system. I like philosophy of linux and I don't want it to change. Therefore I'm tired of hearing new ideas to make linux more winblows-like - if someone prefer MS products and their point of view, then he should buy windows.