I appreciate and admire big businesses that can afford UNIX gurus (absolutely needed in a UNIX environment full time). I was one until my last downsizing when I decided to move on to another business. For truly small businesses (the government SBA defines a small business as less than 5000 employees), UNIX people are few and far between outside large companies and corporations. I just finished an RFP for a "private enterprise (SBA term)" of 8 people. I looked for a Unix support company, and outside HP, or some mega corp charging $300/hour I'm here to tell you that you cannot find them - period. And when you do, they expect really big money because they just don't understand that is not economic to have cadillac systems. It is simply unrealistic for a private business to use Unix unless they are owned by an out of work Unix guru.
On the other hand, MS support people are everywhere, and can be gotten within a couple of hours ON SITE to fix problems. I have a relative with a business in Chillichothe OH who uses unix because they got some software written for SCO about 14 years ago. It is too exhorbitant to get the progs rewritten so he is strangled by programmers, costs, availability. This is because the only unix folks he can get has to travel a couple of hours from Columbus OH. All the other unix apps drove him bananas because of incompatibility. His solution about 8 years ago was to install a second network with MS office and servers. The folks who use the progams now have two computers on their desk. One specialty and one for general office work. There is no cross over because of the expense of setting something like that up.
Don't wase my time gushing over Linux either because after trying it I decided it was as big waste of time unless you are in a large corporation with unlimited (free) tech support. And, searching the internet for days for a solution on blogs, etc is not what I call support.
And don't knock peer-to-peer until you have started up a company on a shoe string and trying to put food on the table in a highly competitive environment. My RFP bound company has finally gotten to the point that they desparately need and can afford a $3500 server and will be tapping their line of credit for the additional $1500 they will need to get it up and running.
Again I appreciate your big corporations, and the fact that so many are so jealous of MS that they would walk thru fire to avoid an MS product. However, there is a time when reality sets in and we have to meet it head on. Very small business are there. Sorry - B
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