Linux

A desktop Linux success story

Here is a story of a successful deployment of Linux PCs in a public library. Have you seen Linux desktops springing up in your community libraries?

Here's a pretty good perspective on the Great Desktop Debate from the Community Voices blog at PC World. Poster Phil Shapiro says:

I was somewhat amused to read Michael Gartenberg's comments that Linux is still not ready for the desktop. Please don't tell that to any of the people who last year logged in 40,000 times to the 28 Linux computers at our small town library and community center in Takoma Park, Maryland. These people are using a Linux solution called Userful, which puts up with robust use day in and day out.

...I get a bit queasy when I hear people say that Linux is not ready for the desktop. Are they fully informed when they make such statements? Maybe Linux is not ready for their desktop, but it sure is ready for ours.

Public libraries seem like a natural fit for Linux since the cost-savings could be significant. Have you seen Linux desktops springing up in your community libraries?

About

Selena has been at TechRepublic since 2002. She is currently a Senior Editor with a background in technical writing, editing, and research. She edits Data Center, Linux and Open Source, Apple in the Enterprise, The Enterprise Cloud, Web Designer, and...

36 comments
kubuntukonquerer
kubuntukonquerer

As a matter of fact, the Pickering libraries use Kubuntu. I found it wonderful; though I'm from the next town over I would use their computers for OpenOffice when I needed it. It was a big reason for me to run Ubuntu when I got my own computer.

Slayer_
Slayer_

But I guess Linux is just very much not right for me... Not sure why a user needs to post a Linux success story though. It's kind of like celebrating a victory from coming in last place in a race. I do rather enjoy though that people can move off of Windows finally and still be able to do "something". I just wish I could (So sick of Windows, my latest glitch is it won't always let me logoff normally, it just ignores the command. But I can open task manager and select my user and choose logoff and it works fine. Piece of shit...) but Linux seems will never do what I want it too do. I use my computer for 80% gaming and 20% web browsing. Occasionally web time replaced with work time, but rarely. But that's 80% of my computer activities that Linux can't do :(. It's nice to dream though that there may be an OS in the future that can game better. Maybe handle CPU better, maybe improve API's for performance. Maybe smart enough to shutdown everything non essential while your gaming so that all you have is the game and the kernel running. Maybe... someday this will be a reality.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

I think this is an outstanding use, but it's a controlled environment. Linux is better suited to use in a public area than Windows is, since it can be locked down tighter. But there's a big difference between a public library and a home desktop. The library systems were probably set up by an administrator, and certainly don't have users trying to load software or attach peripherals. I hope when informed people say Linux isn't ready for the desktop that they're implying "Joe Homeuser's desktop" and not all desktops in general. It would definitely be the way to go in school and new corporate enviroments where MS isn't already entrenched.

Forum Surfer
Forum Surfer

I have several public terminals running xp with no issue. Bios is locked, usb is disabled (in bios and grop policy), no right clicking at all, no optical drives, no printing, no local admin accounts (just 2 domain accounts allowed to log in, a public one and a group created for pc admins...none of my machines have local accounts)...if you hit start the only option is IE through a proxy. Granted it could be hacked, but it would take a little time and possibly machine dissassembly and by then you'd be on camera.

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[i]...if you hit start the only option is IE through a proxy. Granted it could be hacked, but...[/i] How might the client be hacked, or be used to hack the proxy, to "bypass" it? My question is, why not physically connect cables such that access to the Internet is via the proxy computer only, and that in turn is not accessible for any services other than 'net proxy [via firewall rules], at least on the [b]interface[/b] connected to the clients you want to block. If the admin wants to establish remote sessions, couldn't eth2 be used for that, on a proxy which uses eth0 for the Internet and eth1 for the clients whose access to the Internet you're filtering? What part of this is vulnerable? I'm aghast at the thought that the cost of one more ethernet card is the obstacle to such a vast, unrealized improvement in security [I don't consider myself an expert]. http://techrepublic.com.com/5208-6230-0.html?forumID=102&threadID=237156&messageID=2321011 http://issj.sys-con.com/read/123806.htm http://www.ic3.gov/media/2008/080403.htm Please, tell me I'm missing something here ... and, of course, tell me [b]what[/b] I'm missing!

brian.mills
brian.mills

I read an article 3-4 years ago about Ernie Ball (guitar/bass manufacturer) switching from Windows to Red Hat Linux and having great success with it, despite being warned that they'd go under if they did. Quite the opposite, actually. They reported that worker productivity went up drastically, due in part to the ability to better control what software was installed on the systems. For example, employees with no need for web browsing in their daily duties didn't have a web browser installed, cutting down on the bandwidth and time usage spent on eBay, etc. to nearly nothing. I wish I knew where the article was so I could pull it up again, but it's probably still out there somewhere on the internet archived on some news site.

DanLM
DanLM

http://www.news.com/2008-1082_3-5065859.html http://www.infoworld.com/articles/hn/xml/02/11/27/021127hnerniball.html?s=IDGNS Don't know if any of these are what you are talking about. Well damn, we find another happy customer that moved off MS. And this one a buisness that found both savings and less legal hassles from the MS B.S. licensening nightmare. Dan

Neon Samurai
Neon Samurai

The guitar string company article I saw on CNet if I remember correctly. A disgruntled x employee or some such thing called the software auditing organization in the states. They came in and found traces of a program left on a machine that had been rebuilt for another position. The company paid the BS fine and moved to an alternative information system. They've been happy with Linux based OS since and have far more IT budget to put into hardware.

dcolbert
dcolbert

Linux is *not* ready for the desktop and may *never* be suitable. Seamless integration, easy package management, fluid and stable, polished and supported applications, and ease of hardware and application cycles are all beyond the reach of Linux. Linux is more difficult to deploy and to support. Driver libraries run into problems simply because closed source drivers must be reverse engineered with open source alternatives by the open source community. It might be shoe-horned into desktop service with very tightly managed systems backed by senior Linux systems support experience - but these will remain isolated examples. I understand that the *nix community feels a need to congratulate itself for every small victory that shows it *could* work in a particular way... but the fact remains that this doesn't mean it is PRACTICAL to use it that way on any kind of larger scale. In the past this story would have had thousands of responses and dozens of flame wars going. Today it generates 3 responses - because the vast majority of people have realized the truth.

normhaga
normhaga

If you follow the MS world, you will find the same complaints. Just as a thoughtful question, how well did Windows Vista show seemless integration, easy package management, ease of hardware and application cycles, effective driver libraries, etc. Wasn't Vista shoehorned into a desktop service? The accusations you level can be leveled against Windows as just shown.

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[i]Driver libraries run into problems simply because closed source drivers must be reverse engineered with open source alternatives by the open source community.[/i] Admit that is only true of legacy hardware, which categorically is also not supported by current versions of Windows. Any manufacturer of a device that's currently in production can choose to write their own drivers for Linux, or not. [i]I understand that the *nix community feels a need to congratulate itself for every small victory that shows it *could* work in a particular way... but the fact remains that this doesn't mean it is PRACTICAL to use it that way on any kind of larger scale.[/i] The entire EU is terrified!

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[i]In the past this story would have had thousands of responses and dozens of flame wars going. Today it generates 3 responses - because the vast majority of people have realized the truth.[/i] Microsoft is indefensible among people even minimally qualified to discuss its technical merit.

apotheon
apotheon

At first, I thought this was satire. First, there was this incredible and, frankly, ludicrous statement: "[i]Linux is *not* ready for the desktop and may *never* be suitable.[/i]" Never? Really? Hmm. Maybe he's kidding, because that's a roughly [b]insane[/b] statement to be making. Next, there was this hilarity: "[i]Seamless integration, easy package management, fluid and stable, polished and supported applications, and ease of hardware and application cycles are all beyond the reach of Linux.[/i]" Okay, so all of that is somewhere between 110 and 180 degrees in the wrong direction from accuracy. Common perceptions are such that much of it is often believed to be as you say, however. On the other hand, one single point in that list in particular is so obviously, inescapably evident in its [b]wrongness[/b] to anyone that has used a modern Linux distribution since about 2003, give or take, that you could only be engaging in satire: "easy package management". Many major Linux distributions (and some BSD Unix OSes) have beaten Microsoft so handily in the common case for software installation that it really boggles the mind that Microsoft hasn't tried to do anything to close the gap. The rest of your commentary, however, descends rapidly into general evidence that you are not engaging in satire. You actually seem to believe what you've spewed. You're not being ironic -- you're just so full of crap your eyes are turning brown.

dcolbert
dcolbert

So are most cultists. Cultists, Mobsters... any small cloistered community that generally disdains any contact with the real world outside, comes to regard their little community as the "norm". That doesn't mean that Bigamy *is* normal... or that "Getting Whacked is just a part of the business"... or that Linux has a significant and growing share of the market, in particular, the desktop. I'm running Ubuntu. It is leaps and bounds ahead of where Debian was, and I liked Debian because it had the nicest and most reliable package management of any Linux available around the time of Potato and Woody... But, listen... you guys always seem to miss... you get to the level that Win32 was at 3 years prior, and you start trumpting your "we're ready for the desktop" horn... only, the target has shifted... It comes in cycles now, and you're there again. Eventually all the Linux guys are going to move to South America and drink magic kool-aide when they realize that the oppressive forces of MS will never be overcome... And then the domestic Anime market will crash.

apotheon
apotheon

You're either misrepresenting your familiarity with Linux-based systems or just making crap up at this point, obviously. Your logic is pretty self-evidently poppycock, too. After all, I rather suspect you think MS Windows was "ready for the desktop" three years ago, so [b]even if you're right[/b] about Linux-based systems being three years behind MS Windows, that [b]still[/b] means they're "ready for the desktop". Cultists . . . ? I don't even use Linux-based systems, generally speaking. I just know enough to avoid sticking my foot in my mouth every time I utter the word "Linux". That means I don't pronounce inanities like "Linux will [b]never[/b] be ready for the desktop!" with grave seriousness the way you seem inclined to do. There were people in the '80s who said China would "never be a world superpower", too. "[i]I'm running Ubuntu. It is leaps and bounds ahead of where Debian was[/i]" That estimation depends on what your criteria are. If they're "has a lot of clicky shit by default, tries to eliminate privilege separation because Windows-style 'convenience' is more important than security, and standardizes things in a way that makes it more difficult to customize your system," then you're right. Otherwise, you're probably smoking the wacky tobbacky. "[i]you get to the level that Win32 was at 3 years prior[/i]" Misusing terms like Win32 like that pretty clearly indicates that you know less about the current state of MS Windows technology than I do. Thanks for confirming your ignorance on the subject. Would you like to try again?

shardeth-15902278
shardeth-15902278

If you are after an enterprise-class managed solution, there are several offerings - Novell, Altiris. You can centrally lock, configure and package to your hearts content. Hardware - I am seeing fewer and fewer instances of hardware that doesn't work with Linux (And I am actually in the process of switching a 64 bit PC to Linux because Linux has better support for the hardware than XP or Vista). More and more I run into people - both technical and not - who are happily running some flavor of Linux. So I am not sure what your definition of ready and suitable might be. But it seems to be doing just fine for many.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Like you. Not enough telling the truth, and saying I won't do. Aside from a couple of niche markets, every one of the 'problems' you mention in terms of appliance users has been fixed. Games, bespoke development, hardware drivers will be fixed by the market. We are the market, buying into can't means the suppliers won't... Get with the program, they supply what we need and desire...

NaughtyMonkey
NaughtyMonkey

it is hard. Every single thing you said was completely wrong wither because you were misinformed or just to stupid to use something different that Microsoft. [i] Seamless integration, easy package management, fluid and stable, polished and supported applications, and ease of hardware and application cycles are all beyond the reach of Linux.[/i] Yeah it is real hard to click add/remove programs, select your apps, and click install. Like others said, it isn't for gamers since instead of having a girlfriend they choose to buy the latest $300 graphics card and stand in line for 3 days for a game. There are still a few markets, that Linux doesn't fit as well and nobody denies them, but most of the population will be fine using Linux. [i]Driver libraries run into problems simply because closed source drivers must be reverse engineered with open source alternatives by the open source community.[/i] That is crappy hardware developers who have their heads stuck too far up MS ass. Good companies provide drivers or information to make drivers for Linux. nVidia, ATI, Intel, and hundreds of others do. The few that don't are not worth a crap anyway. It is also backwards when hardware makers work with Microsoft. Microsoft changes everything and makes them start over from scratch. Really it is easier to support hardware with OSS since they try not to break things like MS.

dcolbert
dcolbert

Are you implying that Win32 guys are LESS likely to have girlfriends than LINUX guys? Wow! I mean... Ok... this is the FURTHEST stretch of imagination that I've seen from the Linux camp in the "Win32 versus *nix" argument... yet... And I'm not talking a pear-shaped 250 pound of biomass that likes to watch Sailor Moon and play Zelda with you. I'm talking a GIRL friend... But... regardless... Listen, I don't care the WHY of why "crappy hardware developers" decide to keep their code close sourced. The EFFECT is that you're more liable to run into aggravation and need to seek out alternatives when pursuing Linux solutions. When the average desktop user has difficulty with Win32 challenges, that means that Linux is certainly not ready for the broad appeal desktop. Sorry to burst your bubble. Ubuntu, Rage ATI chipsets... horrible problems. Linux in general, RealTek gb NIC support... rampant problems... Add XFree86, KDE, and... heh... OpenOffice, and what have you got? A bloated, hardware and processor hungry desktop that has three layers of complexity between it and the kernel. I remember when you guys used to make the argument that Windows wasn't a real OS, but a shell that sits on DOS... Hmnnn... what is KDE or Gnome? Oh... a shell (you like to call them Windows Managers) that sits on a "Graphic subsystem" (Xfree86) that sits on a kernel... Linux, huge advocates of KISS philosophy, right? *Shaking my head sadly*... It is like a religion with you people. Get a compound and start marrying your sisters.

apotheon
apotheon

"[i]Are you implying that Win32 guys are LESS likely to have girlfriends than LINUX guys?[/i]" Are you really trying to pick a fight over who has the biggest frat-boy attitude, complete with insinuations about how well-endowed people are and whether they're able to get a date on a Friday night? "[i]Listen, I don't care the WHY of why "crappy hardware developers" decide to keep their code close sourced. The EFFECT is that you're more liable to run into aggravation and need to seek out alternatives when pursuing Linux solutions.[/i]" Inaccurate. The effect is that with [b]some[/b] hardware, that's the case -- and with [b]other[/b] hardware, the opposite is the case. Try installing Vista Home on a SPARCstation, for instance. "[i]Ubuntu, Rage ATI chipsets... horrible problems.[/i]" Also, MS Windows + Rage chipsets = horrible problems. The Rage chipsets [b]sucked[/b]. Whether a Rage card would work with any given OS was a crap shoot at any given time. I should know -- I've had the dubious pleasure of trying to get MS Windows working with Rage chipsets a few times too many. Every time but one, it required troubleshooting, every time I got it working it involved a somewhat different solution than all the other times, and on one occasion it never really worked properly. "[i]Linux in general, RealTek gb NIC support... rampant problems... [/i]" MS Windows with PPC, anyone? How about on an old Cyrix CPU? I've seen an MS Windows system crash and burn on a friggin' modem, for crying out loud. Not just a modem -- a [b]Winmodem[/b]! It brought the [b]entire OS[/b] to a fiery end. "[i]Add XFree86, KDE, and... heh... OpenOffice, and what have you got? A bloated, hardware and processor hungry desktop that has three layers of complexity between it and the kernel.[/i]" . . . as opposed to almost an order of magnitude more bloat, all in one huge, all-encompassing, universally devouring homogenous mass of tightly-coupled disaster area in MS Windows. In the Linux world, KDE is bloat. In the MS Windows world, it would lighten the load by at least 90%. People complain about the fact that a modern KDE install can slow down a 500MHz P3 slightly, while Vista's Aero Glass brings a 2.4GHz P4 to its knees. Oh, well -- if you add the (far superior to Aero Glass, in terms of eye candy) Compiz Fusion window manager to your system, you might want to bring it up to 1GHz P3 with 768MB of RAM and 128MB of VRAM for really smooth operation, but that's still better than a 2.4GHz P4 with 1.5GB of RAM and 512MB of VRAM so opening Photoshop won't crash the GUI with Aero Glass. "[i]It is like a religion with you people. Get a compound and start marrying your sisters.[/i]" Make valid comparisons and stop trying to mock people by pretending you know something about them, and maybe you won't be treated with such hostility.

DanLM
DanLM

Other then what occurs on his own OS. Oh, let's not forget that most MS extremists have a memory problem when it comes to exploits, crash's, and other regular problems that occur against their os of choice. Ever think they chose Linux because it could be controlled and ms can't? Ever think that they chose linux because it was more bang for the buck then what they ever have gotten from MS? Ever think they chose linux because it ensured their library could offer quality service instead of paying service fee's to have their desktops cleaned of virus's, spending time on patch's, upgrading virus definations, and fixing blue screens of death due to too many explorer windows being open? Kiss off, what is practicle is a library system chosing a desk top os that was stable, affordable, maintainable. And MS wasn't it. You just can't stand it can you. Truth you twit. How about people bailing for Mac because THEY ARE SICK OF THE CRAP MS. Truth you twit. Manufactures have heard the voice of the population and has begun offering linux as an alternitive to your peace of crap os. Truth you twit. How about time lost to patch's, virus's, and daily crash's over an overbloated OS that you still don't own even when you pay full price for it. How about the fact that you get full ownership, stability, fexiblity to do as you damn well please, and it doesn't cost a cent. MS offers none of that. your an idiot to not see that more and more people are switching. A total flaming idiot. And thats all I expect of Ohioans. Idiots. I moved here from another state, So it's easy to see the buck teath goober look with dog collars around their necks bowing to the brain wash that is constantly fed to the population by both the idiot politicions and the large coporations. Your just another example of how easy it is to feed a line of crap to the stupid and watch as they pay good money for the line of crap. Dan

dcolbert
dcolbert

I rest my case. I lived in California my entire life until this past June. I don't think I qualify as an Ohioan at this point. But you're certainly a typical Linux-geek.

apotheon
apotheon

"[i]The MORE you rant, the more you illustrate my point.[/i]" How ironic. "[i]running KDE and Gnome and other lighter windows managers under XFree86... [/i]" That makes you a beginner, not "adept". "[i]I don't think there is any mistaking who the fanboy is in *this* argument.[/i]" You're more of an anti-fanboy, obviously. Either way, you're somewhat divorced from the actual facts of the case. I'm especially impressed by the way you keep misusing the term "Win32". The indications I've seen so far seem to point to your knowledge of buzzwords, and not of actual technologies.

dcolbert
dcolbert

I just lost track of this thread. The MORE you rant, the more you illustrate my point. I run Ubuntu at home, I'm quite adept at Debian, which I've installed to notebooks and recompiled for 802.11b implementations, running KDE and Gnome and other lighter windows managers under XFree86... Currently I'm working on a FreeBSD based FreeNas system. I've played around with MythTV, as well, and found Beyond TV for Win32 a much more mature and well supported solution... I've also got considerable Solaris experience on older Sparcstation 5 and 10 platforms. Out of date, but a damn site harder to manage than Ubuntu. I don't think there is any mistaking who the fanboy is in *this* argument.

DanLM
DanLM

When he is shown to be TOTALLY wrong about his arguments and his ASSUMPTIONS, he runs from the fight. Just like Microsoft's OS. Sounds goods, looks pretty. But no stability. Dan

DanLM
DanLM

Mac and windows at work unix and windows at home. I just can't stand blowhards which you quite obviously are. I'm sick of extremists, and thats exactly what you are. I see the good, the bad, the ugly in all os's. You on the other hand are just an ahole that walks the MS line. No matter how many times you have to format c: and reinstall because their patch's have totally trashed your mutli processor machine to the point it runs like a 486. And yes, thats exactly how my dual processor 2.8 runs right now on windows xp media. Like a 486. And yes, I run virus scans every day. yes, I defrag every night. yes, I remove crap files every day. And yes, that is why I am sick of jack offs like you who talk of all the glorious wonders of MS. Because your full of it. I spend more time cleaning, maintaining my windows box then I have ever spent on any mac or linux machine. Thats waisted time that I had to pay to have the privalige to use. No wonder the library went with linux and not MS. The best part of all of this. You have people walking in off the street using these machines with no training. So, extremists like you can't even site the need for the learning curve. Anser that extremist Dan

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

well, to me its kinda funny at least. Linux has "saved the day" at work here for me several times recently. Since I left IT, there have been numerous problems in the IT area here at work. So I took an old system ready for recycling, and put PCLinuxOS on it, added a DVD RW DL drive and an extra HDD laying around. Anyway, since then this is the 3rd time that it has saved the day, Windows likes to crash (as you noted), and often Win recovery tools cannot find data on the HDD, or even a Win install afterwards. But the Linux box, out of 4 tries, 3 times it recovered the data, and was able to read the HDD. The thought keeps popping up in my mind that MS made NTFS, and cannot use it as well as a Linux box. Our local deskside has plenty of Win based tools to recover data, and they could not get data from any of these 3 drives. All I had to do was plug in a USB caddy and viola -- the files are there and waiting to be written to dvd dl (or another HDD first). Win -- 0 Linux -- 5 yes, 5, there were 2 other items where I used Linux on this box to save the day as well, cause the Win solution sucked.

NickNielsen
NickNielsen

Several times after Windows crashes, I have been unable to use the Recovery console or setup disk to restore/reload/reinstall/anything at all on the PC. Booting to PCLinuxOS off the live CD allows me to access the hard drive and copy the contents of C:\Documents and Settings" and any other custom directories to a thumbdrive or USB hard drive. I can then boot the Ultimate Boot CD, run the hard drive diagnostics and wipe/partition the drive if necessary. Now I can reinstall Windows and reload office files and bookmarks for all users. I've been almost kissed by users when they find out "I couldn't recover the configuration, but all your data was saved." Edit: Type, post, proffread, splel

Oktet
Oktet

Runs beautifully on a Sony Vaio laptop.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

are tired of the flame wars. Personally I use both, for different reasons. And since my move (at home) I have only chosen to use Linux. My 2 XP systems just sit there unplugged, while both *nix boxes are running and being used. *nix is not for everyone, and many *nix users will agree on that. If you want to get away from MS, it is an excellent solution, and it works for most things very well. For those gamers out there that need the latest graphics card on the market, day 1, it is probably not the right solution though. As for most people, Linux can be learned quickly, and will suite most peoples needs very easily.

Oktet
Oktet

One of the reasons I have a Vista partition alongside XP is for Halo 3, and for other learning purposes. Usually I never boot into the Vista partition unless I want to play Halo 3 or test something on Vista. Same with Windows XP, there are certain apps you can't run on a Linux box, that run just fine on Windows and vice versa. Different tools for different jobs.

dcolbert
dcolbert

I am a big fan of the Debian distro. I like the package management solutions. I also think OS X is a nice *nix as well. I've considered moving my personal machines to either/both as Microsoft "QA" practices have become more Orwellian over the last several years. I think they have their place, and for technically competent users, there are obvious advantages to counter any disadvantages. My point remains that Linux really isn't ready for the wider desktop - and I have my doubts it ever will be. I think that rather than trying to imply that Linux is something it is not (a viable broad replacement for Win32 on the desktop), it is better to push what Linux *is* well suited to. These kinds of threads set up conflict between *nix fanatics and Win32 users. I think ultimately, it helps maintain the perception that *nix is the domain of socially mal-adjusted propellerheads and turns regular and average users off from the Linux community. Although honestly, I think there is an element in the *nix community that PREFERS it this way.

boxfiddler
boxfiddler

"Although honestly, I think there is an element in the *nix community that PREFERS it this way." Commentary abounds from *nix users within the flame wars that rage to support that!

Oktet
Oktet

I showed up to my local Fast Lube & Tune Garage for an oil change in the city of Beaumont, the mechanic/co-owner who did the oil change on my car was running Ubuntu Linux on several PC's like it was Windows.I kind of thought that was pretty cool, because I am dual booting the same distro they use at Fast Lube & Tune: Ubuntu. The mechanic/co-owner told me how much faster and cheaper it was to maintain than Windows, even though he pointed out how different it was from Windo[z]e, he seemed to like it, just like I like my Ubuntu.

Larry the Security Guy
Larry the Security Guy

"...even though he pointed out how different [Ubuntu} was from Windo[z]e" One thing I think is the biggest obstacle to moving away from Windows (whether to Linux or to any other alternative to Windows) is the fact that it is being compared too closely. People tend to find comfort zones and will naturally remember a key or mouse sequence that does the job they need doing, and resist change if those same sequences don't work. I was one of those people and did what I could to make my Linux experience look and act as much like Windows as possible, but I gradually learned the native sequences and now have no problem workin in either environment (gotta use Windows at work).

tech10171968
tech10171968

It's great to finally hear that someone else gave Linux a fair shot. I work in a nearly 100% Linux & FOSS enviroment at my office (I say "nearly" because there we have a few proprietary technical apps using some outdated Windows API's and for which there are no Linux equivalents, but there is a sole XP machine for that). My presidents' initial resistance wasn't really resistance at all, but rather uncertainty ("will I still be able to do this, that and the other?") She didn't know anything other than Windows even existed and was a bit uneasy about leaving her Outlook/Office 2003/Microsoft Publisher comfort zone; but once I showed her that there were feasible OSS equivalents she took to it like a duck to water (of course there was a little hand-holding required in the beginning). The rest of the staff also didn't seem to have a problem with making the transition, and I guess I may have inadvertently made a couple of "converts" along the way; after a few months of use I was approached by a couple of staffers with questions about obtaining a CD for their own PC's at home (we use Debian Etch).

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