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  • #2182789

    So many zealots, so little time


    by jdclyde ·

    Why is it, even when presented with hard facts people refuse to budge on there religion of OS worship?

    While I recognize that linux isn’t the answer for everyone in every situation, I also recognise that the MicroSoft machine has a lot of short comings that are generally overlooked by the faithful.

    Is having to not know as much really worth a system that crashes on a much more frequent basis than it’s Unix and Novell counterparts?

    There is also the issue of security, and anyone that has ever spent at least five minutes at the SANS site would see that there is a much bigger turn around to getting exploits patched from MicroSoft than the *nix OS’s.

    The difficulty of exploiting the *nix bugs is also much higher, as they do not have graphical script kiddie tools that can point and click their way into the system.

    The Viruses and Spyware that runs rampant on the Admin by default Windows systems are out of control. This verses the restricted user the *nix run at which even if you DID run an infected file the WORST you would do is trash your home directory, not the whole system.

    In the “Is MicroSoft at fault” discussion
    there are actually a few people trying to say that first there isn’t a problem CREATED by SP2, and that if there is a problem it isn’t the fault of MicroSoft.

    People really need to expect more from their OS vendors than they are getting now, and they also need to accept that this isn’t a religious issue it is a business tool. Get over it people.

    No, this is NOT a *nix vs Windows flame war. This is just to get people to look and realize that MS isn’t always doing right by you.

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  • Author
    • #3242599

      Two Sides

      by firstpeter ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I think (or at least HOPE) folks are grounded in reality enough to accept that a Windows-based platform isn’t the solution for everything. And by the same token neither is a *nix-based system. Which one is better? That depends on a lot of factors, including your situation.

      You can make the same argument with Office. Is Office the best business productivity tool? In some cases, absolutely. In others it’s a waste of money and aspirin (or beer, depending upon how you deal with crashes and exploits).

      Plain and simple. To try and espouse one approach as “the best” in all (or even most) situations is absurd at best. I agree with jd – let’s leave the fanatical approach out of it and accept that they’re both tools and better suited than the other in different situations.

      • #3242389

        Actually . . .

        by apotheon ·

        In reply to Two Sides

        I’d say that, if you’re only comparing two options, it’s quite easy to be correct in saying that one is “the best” in most situations. Of course, part of that determination involves your definition of “the best”.

        Specifically, if you’re only comparing Linux and Windows, I’m pretty confident in saying that Linux is “the best” in most circumstances, as long as your definition of “the best” involves the acceptance of non-Windows solutions not only by yourself but by those with whom you have to deal, as well. The major problem there, of course, is that Microsoft has leveraged vendor lock-in with surprising skill to ensure that it’s very difficult to unseat it as the dominant platform in certain market niches, even though it does its job very poorly in (most of?) them.

        Meanwhile, Windows might be considered to be “the best” in most cases if what you’re calling “the best” is the OS that you just can’t get away from in certain market niches. Hostageware has that effect, y’know.

        By my definitions, you may not be able to make one single OS into “the best” for “most” circumstances where you’re comparing more than just two OS options, but you can certainly make the honest claim that Windows is [b]not[/b] “the best” in almost all circumstances. I occasionally recommend a client stay with Windows, at least for he time being, even when the client is asking about switching systems to another OS, and even more rarely (almost never) I might recommend using a Windows machine from the very beginning for a particular purpose, but even in those circumstances I find that my thoughts on the matter is that Windows is only appropriate “until better support on another platform comes along”.

        Hm. I guess, to wrap things up, it’s an in-depth understanding of Windows that made a Linux lover of me. Windows isn’t really suited to anything other than serving the lowest common denominator in terms of the marketing-credulous. The fact that it has a stranglehold on certain markets is a recommendation for the Microsoft sales and legal teams, and not for the technology they peddle.

        • #3235911

          Point Taken

          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to Actually . . .

          You’re right – it all depends upon the definition of “the best”.

          Having a more secure platform in application isn’t always “the best”. The more robust platform isn’t always “the best”. The most mainstream platform isn’t always “the best”. That was the point of my original post – for ANYONE (on either side of the fray) to come out and say that one OS is the best is either a) talking about a particular situation / application, or b) drinking way too much of the Kool-Aid various folks are offering.

          Your point, though, about whether it’s the technology or the sales and legal teams is a good one. But to discard it and say that it shouldn’t be part of the discussion about which “the best” would be a folly (always wanted to use that one in a post, too!). Those things are a way of life. People are used to Windows because they use it at home. That alone makes a Windows platform a better solution in certain situations. Better technically? Not necessarily (probably not likely, even). Better feature-wise? Probably not (but perhaps). Still a better solution? Absolutely, because the folks that will be using it are more comfortable with it and the pain to move is minimal. Don’t rule emotion out of any decision making process because it’s there and it’s a real factor.

        • #3235746


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Point Taken

          Yeah, that’s right on target.

        • #3235666

          What I’m seeing a lot of now

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Point Taken

          With Home computers is the switch from Windows 9X to various versions of Linux as the people are unwilling to dispose of their older perfectly working computers and buy new stuff just to run Windows 2000 or XP which their old computers are not capable of doing.

          Sure thy do have new ones which they have the newer Windows OS’s on but they seem to want to keep the old ones as well and quite a few are not only enjoying the switch to Linux but are also taking exams in Linux as well. I ran across this just yesterday and was a bit shocked to find that a Doctor was quite happy to be doing the Linux Exams that are offered here in the higher education places. His current idea is that as he becomes more familiar with Linux to first switch all his home computers to it {currently he has his Internet Gateway running Red Hat and likes it far more than Windows} and he eventually plans to switch all of his business computers over to Linux as well when he is more familiar with it. He see many advantages over Windows and while I don’t think it may be the best solution he appears to.

          It could be that M$ is shooting themselves in the foot by ending the life cycles of their older OS’s and expecting everyone to dump their older computers and upgrade every 5 years or so which is great in Business but not such a good idea for the home market. And with the current push to recycle computer parts defiantly is not such a great idea for the environment either or the costs involved in recycling the hardware.

          Col ]:)

        • #3254834

          Good Point But….

          by radiic ·

          In reply to What I’m seeing a lot of now

          Thats a good point about the hardware Hal, but what do you do when its your Mom that wants to better up. I have a hard enough time now, showing her some of the things she can do. Besides showing her then a month later she asks if she can do what i just showed her the previous month. Argg…

          But i do agree with the awesomeness of all the *nix’s, that are out there. I was able to load RH and Suse (several different versions too)on an old Premio box i found here at work that was at leaset 7 years old, and it loaded no problem, and ran like a champ. With all the new disposal rules that are out there, we might be forced to start making our old hardware work better for us. I dont see using any of the new MS os’s on anything older than 6 months to get the same performance.

        • #3181456

          Well I just gave up with my mother

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Good Point But….

          At first I used to bring her over here and use one of my workstations to do her work, she is completely computer illiterate and really doesn’t want to know how to use one.

          But out of desperation I gave her a Computer a few years ago now and I don’t think she has ever used it admittedly she now turns it on when I go over there to do what she needs done and it does save one return trip but things have gone from bad to worse as she has just got a new Digital Photocopier which doubles as a printer so instead of doing the Magazine that she does 4 times a year by getting a hard copy sent to her and then making up A3 pages from A4 she is now getting the thing e-mailed to her and printing it directly from the computer. So instead of just going over there to do her “Volunteer” work for her which was previously just the members address lists and mailing labels I’m now also printing off the Quarterly mag as well.

          And I thought that computers would make my life easier. 🙁

          Currently I have her on 98SE and I’m not game enough to upgrade the computer to XP as she will just throw another fit claiming that things are constantly changing and she has no possibility of keeping up with things. 😉

          But on the other hand I do a bit of volunteer work at a nursing home near by and keep their computers up and running just for my cost of parts and whenever I go there to fix something or do some routine maintains on the nursing homes patients use computers I’m constantly being bombarded with the latest Porn Sites that they have discovered. The women are the worse offenders as well as they not only demand to show you the sites but give you sound effects as well. I just laugh as I can not help myself and while the nursing staff are constantly complaining I’m not about to start blocking these sites as the patients enjoy them and they are certainly old enough not to be adversely affected by them, after all they have precious little else to do and it is one of their few escapes from the routine of the place. 😀

          Col ]:)

        • #3180547

          Wait!- Your moms worth the time!

          by cio at alphabetas ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Guys, just do what I did 6 years ago with my mom- get her to
          buy an iBook or iMac. 6 Years with no trouble other than the
          occasional “How do I do this again?” calls. After 6 years on the
          Mac she installs her own printers now, and has never called for a
          virus or spyware.
          My dads house with the 98SE computer? It’s down (again.) so I
          will stop by and ressurrect it (again.)

          Mom just upgraded from the 300MHz iBook she got 6 years ago.
          How many of you can state that you have a family member that
          has a 6 year old Windblows device that you didn’t need to work
          on for 6 years?

          BSD is great in the enterprise (I am MCP as well so am no fanatic)
          but for home machines, Get Mom A Mac!

        • #3180911

          Mac for the End User

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Actually, getting mom/grandma/whoever a Mac is a pretty good idea. It’s not quite as good in a number of ways as an all-open-source unix would be, but a relative know-nothing won’t ever miss the differences. In fact, some benefits look like detriments to those that don’t know what they’re doing.

          There are a number of philosophical reasons to recommend against a Mac no matter what the technical needs, but there aren’t really any philosophical [b]or[/b] technical reasons to recommend against one [b]as compared with a Windows PC[/b] these days, unless you have some specific business need that [b]requires[/b] a Windows machine.

          As for being an MCP proving you’re unbiased: perhaps it would be instructive to know that I’m Microsoft certified as well. I would hope that lends me some credence in the eyes of readers, but I won’t hold my breath. Heh.

        • #3179715

          Well personally while have have nothing against Mac’s as such

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          I see them just like Volvo drivers their owners seem to have some form of blind allegiance to the Apple Platform against everything else and they make the Windows Vs Nix look like child’s play in comparison. I still have some very vivid memories of a trade show a few years ago where the Apple people where describing the XP boxes as “DOS BOXES” in a very derogatory way. That is something I have not even seen at MS meetings when talking about Linux.

          But for my particular case a Mac would not be appropriate for the hardware requirements that are currently in use with the photocopier being a network printer the makers of the photocopier do not supply Mac drivers for all the functions and while you could have limited print ability from the Mac to the Photocopier you couldn’t scan from it to the Mac unless you where prepared to write your own drivers and rework programs for it to work. Of course I’m not talking about the latest MAC OS’s but something about 3 + years old.

          In my particular case that would be even worse than attempting to explain just why it is that you click on the “Start” button to close the thing down. 🙁

          Col ]:)

        • #3179581

          Have you tried VNC?

          by alangeek ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          I’ve gotten around this with several of my relatives by using VNC. I don’t have to drive an hour to go and show them how to print or download pics from their camera, I just show them on their own machine from the comfort of my own desk.

        • #3170049


          by oz_media ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Yes I’ve used VNC a few times and though ti was great, I use Remote Administrator now (form AdRem software) as it seems much faster even without adjusting refresh rates.

          But there are many alternatives such as RealVNC and AdRem software for such purposes.

        • #3169848

          (To HAL 9000) Hey, watch your language buddy !!!

          by jardinier ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          You know perfectly well that I drive a Volvo because it just happens to be one of the best cars ever built. In fact the 240 series (mine is a 244 GL) is not only the best ever Volvo, but some would argue that it is THE BEST motor car ever built.

          Well of course I guess Mercs are OK, but I’ll thrash you off at the lights any time with my Volvo.

          As for Macs, well of course everyone knows that Macintosh is not a brand of computer, but a religion.

          It’s “User Friendly” myth derives from the fact that it had a GUI and mouse while IBM was still using DOS.

          Because I currently own, or have owned, many models of Macs from a Mac Plus to a Power G3 running OS 10.2 I can ASSURE you that at least prior to OS X they can cause as much grief as Windows OS 95x through to ME.

          If you don’t believe me, get hold of one running any OS prior to 9.2 and suffer the consequences.

        • #3169841

          Hi there Jules

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Long time no see here on TR. 😀

          But I’ll put my wifes 250 CE up against your 244 Volvo any day of the week it has a 2.5 LT 6 cylinder motor with EFI and a 4 Speed Auto that is almost usable unlike those horrid Volvo 244 Autos. :p

          The Bosh K Jetronic mechanical fuel Injection while being OK is no where near as good as the EFI D Jetronic from Bosch as it just allows the motor to produce more power and torque. I know I’ve driven both and you are perfectly correct the 240 series Volvo was a really good car the only pity is that so many nerds drive them with their hats on and totally fail to even look anywhere near the road as they just know that people will get out of their road as they can see as the Volvo’s proceed down the road that the lights are on but no ones at home. 😉

          My sister drives a 740 and she is a perfect example of this type of Volvo driver as she is oblivious to everything around her and to get her attention if you can not get in front of her you have to try to drive in through a door and even that is no guarantee of getting her attention. 🙂

          Col ]:)

        • #3169687

          Ya gotta be kidding

          by jardinier ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Some time ago I found myself at traffic lights beside my mechanic’s assistant who was driving a small vehicle with 3.5 litre 6 cylinder motor which produced roughly twice as much horse power as my Volvo.

          Well of course when the lights turned green I got away far ahead of him. Naturally he was able to catch up and overtake me eventually.

          But he was in awe. “Julian beat me off at the lights !” he exclaimed to my mechanic.

          As for Volvo drivers in general, I guess you just accept the myth without knowing the reality. The upper North Shore of Sydney where I live would undoubtedly have the highest concentration of Volvos in Sydney. Volvo drivers DO NOT drive in a manner different to drivers of other vehicles.

          What Volvo drivers do have in common however is excellent taste in choice of motor vehicles.

          And as for the automatic transmission — well I guess you will just have to drive my car to learn how smoothly it changes gear.

        • #3169663


          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          The Mercedes have a 4 Speed Auto and the first generally isn’t used only if you are towing or accelerating hard so they have a lot of low down end grunt and can move off the lights fairly quickly, and that added to the EFI instead of the Mechanical Fuel Injection is far more responsive. They just go so much better although they are thirsty little blighter’s. 🙂

          I’ve worked on both types of car and I’ve rebuilt Auto’s on both as well what the 244 GL has going for it is a really high performance motor which surprises quite a lot of people who are unfamiliar with those “Boxy” cars but they do go very well for their engine capacity. They are roughly about the same GVM as the Benz and the EFI Benz has the edge on acceleration but not necessarily top end as those things are not really comfortable much above 90 MPH and while they will go faster they are not happy at speeds higher. 😉

          I’ve been driving both types of car since they where new and while I personally have Mercedes both the Volvo and Mercedes are really high performance vehicles in sheep’s clothing and far better designed than a lot of the so called “Muscle Cars” that have been offered by most of the major car makers. There are only a handful of cars makes that really are faster and then they have their own limitations like only being able to carry a loaf of bread on the rear seat and very little else like the 911 Porsche. 😀

          Col ]:)

        • #3169586

          volvo owners have something in common..

          by jaqui ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          a lack of sense when it comes to personal safety.
          just cause volvo makes a stronger body than any other car don’t mean you should drive it like it’s a TANK!!!
          grab some brains and drive like you can die.

          crazy people with guns might shoot you if you don’t stop driving crazy

        • #3171413

          This could go on forever

          by jardinier ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          But I recommend that people who make sarcastic comments on Volvo drivers based on a myth that MAY have had some basis 30 years ago, get behind the wheel of one and see how beautifully they handle.

          In fact my vehicle accelerates and handles so well that I am tempted to drive recklessly.

          Before he disappeared from the forums, GOD (GuruOfDos) informed us that the Police in England use Volvos because they handle so well at high speeds.

        • #3171317


          by oz_media ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Howzit goin mate?

          Well I see you reared your ugly head over what is known as the most boring mobile ever created.

          HOWEVER, I think Volvos are one of the most magnificent automobiles ever built.

          WIth a Porsche engine and th emost advanced braking engineering on the planet, Volvo has set the standard of exactly what automobile engineering SHOULD be.

          Though the engines are a bit of a pickle unless you know them, the airflow control bladder system is a real headwrecker, they are definitely one hell of a nice ride.

          NOW, we look at what Volvo has brought us in recent years, with the S-series, a stunningly good looking car (taken the Jaguar font lines) with that exact same award winnign engineering and construction that puts all other manufacturers to shame. In fact, many people don’t realize just how many engineering patents have been bought from Volvo by Jaguar, Mercedes Benz and Rolls Royce over the years so that thye oo can use this technology.

          Look at the 240 series and it LOOKS like a drab safety box for Euro-wannabes, though it has the most advanced engineering.

          Look at the S-Series and you see a high end automobile for a high end driver, that has the most advanced engineering.

          AND THEY ARE FAST AS HELL!! My friend’s Volvo wagon blows the doors off of the Mustangs and Honda’s that cruise around Vancouver (always good for a chuckle).

          NICE CARS!

          Some cops drove 240 Dl’s here too in the early 80’s. By far the safest car on the planet, for steering, braking, crumple, air bag tech etc.

        • #3171298

          Now that is just plain Criminal

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Well I just gave up with my mother

          Giving the Cops Volvo’s to drive they would never appreciate just how good a car that they had to drive.

          That reminds me of when the local Cops here had BMW motorcycles the old R series with the boxer motors I watched one idiot throw one into a corner and them flick in into a right hand corner in front of the City Hall only to catch the right hand cylinder head on the curb and spit him off.

          Of course it was the bikes fault that the idiot could do things like that and not get away with it if it didn’t handle so well he would have been going so much slower and wouldn’t have sustained the injuries that he did the sad thing is that he only broke a leg and trashed a perfectly good BMW. 🙁

          Some things should never under any circumstances be given to police to drive as they are even worse in the “Mechanically Sympathy” stakes that race drivers. 🙂

          Col ]:)

        • #3179717


          by dogzilla ·

          In reply to Point Taken

          (Great discussion btw.)

          Imagine an industry or individual company deciding to convert itself over to a different OS. For the sake of easy hypothetical purposes let’s say ms-hostageward to some *nix distribution. Considering the true costs of training including the lag in performance and efficiency of people getting used to and learning something new… back up to speed with the new systems, what if they simply bought most of their employees a take home computer freely loaded with basically the new stuff. Costs of hardware can be kept low as *nix performance doesn’t require as much pie in the sky resources as the typical latest hostageware does. Depending on the *nix distribution the software costs could be extremely low. So total initial cost of a ‘home play’ system might could be kept in the low hundreds.

          Now here is where the intrinsic rubber hits the road. The real costs of training and getting back up to speed is pretty high often even when “simply” doing an “upgrade” of existing systems. But what if the users were passionate and self-motivated about the new change such that they are now spending additional hours on their new ‘home’ computers playing, surfing and… getting very familar, comfortable and proficient on the new OS?

          I can foresee the IS staff initially traumatized by such a concept especially if they are also charged with answering the increased number of questions and doing some limited support for the ‘home’ users. On the other hand, isn’t it much easier and more satisfying to work with a user when they are enthusiastic and pumped up about their new system and what they are doing? And if handled well from the beginning, a lot of the basics and intermediate stuff will flow through the users with little demand placed on the IS staff. Scarey for some shops to consider such a scenerio I’m sure but this is not unlike what helped get a lot of ms-hostageware in the door of entrenchment in many businesses to begin with.

        • #3179624


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Imagine…

          That’s a very good idea.

          There’s a $500 Linux laptop called the Balance available through Wal-Mart. That’d probably be a good candidate. With the right person negotiating the deal, you could probably even get a significant bulk discount.

        • #3235680

          Right tool for the right job for the right cost

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Actually . . .

          Usually *nix is attractive because it and most of its apps are free or very inexpensive. MS is charging WAY too much and their upgrade cycle is out of control!

        • #3180558

          it’s all about the admins

          by llamaking ·

          In reply to Actually . . .

          I’ve got a nitwit of an admin who runs our exchange server. Granted that I set it up, but it has been up for over 200 days. I have to threaten him to do the microsoft patches. I’ve tried to get him into any kind of UNIX (starting with RedHat and FreeBSD), but he can’t grasp them.

          I have a real smart network engineer that likes to do everything on Solaris (sparc) with open source software, but he screws everything up by tinkering with it. I’ve tried to get him to understand Windows, but he’s broken every windows machine that he’s touched.

          My internal webserver (10-20k hits per day) ran on FreeBSD for 600+ days uptime before being replaced by a IIS machine because the web guru couldn’t be bothered to even try Chilisoft ASP. With him it’s microsoft or a tantrum.

          I wouldn’t dream of having my admin and net engineer switch platforms. They couldn’t handle it. They’d break everything. I can’t get new ones either due to hiring policies. I run FreeBSD at home, XP at work and Linux, Solaris, Windows 2k-2k3, and FreeBSD in the server room. It’s all about the abilities of the admins.

        • #3181072

          You’re absolutely correct… Administration is the key!!!

          by tcpip4u ·

          In reply to it’s all about the admins

          In our environment we run HPUX, RedHat, SUSE, Netware, Oracle, Windows NT 4.0, 2000, and 2003 servers. However, depending on the competency of the admin the relability of the platforms really do look bad. Even the so called “Mighty Linux” can look like a piece of S*&T when you have an admin that don’t know what they are doing….

        • #3180992

          do you host a public site on that webserver of yours?

          by unclerob ·

          In reply to it’s all about the admins

          If you still have a website running on a freebsd websver, post the url of your website if you don’t mind. I want to check out the performance of your site. If it’s just a corporate intranet site then don’t worry about it. I’ve always been interested in FreeBSD but have never had a chance or the time to try it out. Wow, FreeBSD running on a personal pc at home, you running on the “edge”, I would never have assumed people would run it as a desktop platform.

        • #3180953

          Well, did you try it?

          by vas_galati ·

          In reply to do you host a public site on that webserver of yours?

          I’m not a Unix nor Linux GURU (with respect for these who are), but I used FreeBSD as a platform and is very good (for a programmer). What do you expect from a desktop PC? To show movies and run latest games? Not for me. Remember SFDX?

        • #3179696

          I haven’t tried it which is why I was asking…

          by unclerob ·

          In reply to Well, did you try it?

          But to answer your question, assuming that the pc is up to snuff hardware wise, I do expect it to be able to do more than just surf the net, send email and run a suite of office productivity apps. And I also do expect it to be able to play & record music & movies, play video games, video editing, web development, programming, etc. If the pc’s hardware is capable, I pretty much expect the pc to do as many things as it can for me – if not, then what’s the point?! Several years ago it was cool to have a few pc’s, each setup & dedicated to a specific task but nowadays that’s just too much clutter – if I can get my pc to do everything (almost everything anyways) that is the best route for me. Maybe not for everyone but that’s my ideal.

        • #3170071

          leave it at home

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to I haven’t tried it which is why I was asking…

          the last thing I want my corporate users doing is playing and recording music and videos at work. If there WERE a business need, then I’d probably hook that user up with a MAC, even if it was standalne.

        • #3180906

          yes and no

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to it’s all about the admins

          Admin competence is key, to be certain. So too is your choice of platform for the job. It’s pretty bad practice to choose technologies based on the biases of the admins.

          I feel for you, being in the position of having to deal with hiring policies that prevent you from getting the admins you need to do the jobs according to a clear assessment of technology needs. That doesn’t mean that the various technologies don’t have strengths and weaknesses that make them more or less suited to particular jobs.

          In an ideal world, you’d be able to continue running that webserver on FreeBSD. If you really cannot do so because of a particular admin, though, you’ll just have to suffer, I suppose. That doesn’t mean that a Windows solution is the “right” solution for the job, though. It just means you’ve got a problem admin and a bad situation that comes with him.

      • #3180503

        I don’t use a hammer for everything!

        by gorto ·

        In reply to Two Sides

        I’ve learned along time ago that you can’t use a hammer for everything. Some things just work better with a tool suited to the project. I started off my carrier Administering NT 4.0 and Novell Servers. Back then Novell was the best for file and print services. 2000 Server come on the scene and I brought up W2K Servers and got rid of the Novell. I became a carried diehard Microsoft fanatic. I moved to another company and found that they were using Postfix on Linux for the Email Server. I’ve been with using this server 3+ years with no problems twice a year maintenance reboots and no problems. I have also installed a Linux firewall and a Apache Web Server. My FTP Server is also running on Linux. We use Microsoft for the desktop and file and print server services and linux for the rest. The environment is very stable and everything works very well together. I really think that Administration is all about using the right tool for the job. There is no room for bias.

    • #3242592

      Now you’ve gone and done it!

      by hal 9000 ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      You had to post this didn’t you? 😉

      You know how some will react and you still went ahead with it. 🙂

      Well all I can say is firstly I totally agree with you on this one there is no one size fits all which some people are unwilling to accept or claim that only a very small section of the market is involved so they don’t count.

      When I go to M$ meetings I’m constantly told that because I first used Unix I’m expecting far more than any OS can or should deliver which I take as M$ speak as we are unable to reach that level so we don’t try. :p

      Unix/Linux has its places and with the advent of Thin Clients may be on the way back but so does M$ have a place and I use what suits each individual job best.

      The problem is that so many have grown up on M$ Windows they just do not know any better and expect things to be the way that they are and can not conceive that there are different and very good OS available. 😉

      What really got me was a posting to that particular thread where someone didn’t see anything wrong with needing to install 146 MEG of patches after applying SP2 to XP computer on a clean install they said “That’s the way it should be!” Now SP2 hasn’t been out for all that long and was supposed to fix most of the inbuilt problems in XP but needing to download 146 MEG of Patches on top of SP2 is just a bit much for what I consider to be a stable OS. Granted currently M$ owns the desktop but only because so many third party applications only run on Windows and as yet the Windows emulators are not really that good to do away with Windows all together. So until these Mission Critical applications become available in Open Source or even on a buy as you need basis for Unix/Linux Windows will retain its current position. But the moment that Windows Emulators start working well or an application is written to run on one of the Nix’s and can use the same data as the Windows Application and then export the data to the same or similar application on a Windows unit things will start to change as the need will no longer be there for a all Windows Desktop environment. It would make it so much easier to roll out desktops with Linux on them if they could access MYOB or Quick Books files and then export them to these applications that their accountants are running on Windows Boxes.

      Once that happens it will no longer be necessary to have Windows only on the desktop and provided that they work like the Windows Applications most end users will not notice a difference. Once the Nix Accounting packages are developed to a standard where they are not noticeable to the end user as being different small business will grab them like a house on fire and embrace the new OS’s.

      But at the same time I think M$ will start making it more inviting to go Windows Only by offering even bigger discounts than they currently are to go that way. Or maybe even release their own Unix with a Windows like front end on it so the end user will not see any differences and the idea of having constantly restricted users who can type in an admin password to install something and then have the OS revert back to a user mode will be sold as a “New Improved Windows” and the word Unix will not be heard. Maybe the Windows Server 2008 will go this way if there is a marked increase in the penetration of Linux into the market.

      Col ]:)

      • #3242579

        I just get that way

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to Now you’ve gone and done it!

        I tried real hard to be as objective and fair as possible. Didn’t use the M$ or WinDoze once! (oops, now I did)

        I use both and it just drives me nuts all the wackos out there.

        The worst example was about a year ago a “tech” from the bank we do business came on site to make sure that the head of accountings computer could handle their new banking software. He asked me what kind of network we had and I said Unix servers and TCP/IP. His response “Unix? Never heard of it”. I don’t care if you can’t run a computer without pretty pictures, but you had better at least KNOW WHAT unix is and that windows grew up from unix many moons ago.
        No unix, no PC. We would all still be on dumb terminals!

        If people stopped making excuses for MicroSoft and demand better, we would get it.

        And at the same time, we need to have file structure standardization for the *nix’s. Never get apps written for generic linux if each has a different layout of where their config files are located.

        The next few years will be really interesting! Can’t wait to see what SuSE is going to do next. The are going to be the ones to break open the desktop market.

        • #3239308


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to I just get that way

          There’s the Linux Standard Base, which (among other things) specifies a “standard” for filesystem organization. Debian follows the LSB quite well. Gentoo and Red Hat are infamous for their deviation from the LSB (I still can’t figure out why the NIC configuration files are in a scripts directory).

          The fact that a business IT industry leading vendor like Red Hat is ignoring the standard is a big part of the reason the LSB isn’t getting as much “airtime” as it should. Blame Red Hat, which learned some of its marketing strategy by competing with Microsoft.

      • #3180645

        Haven’t you heard . . .

        by gentlerf ·

        In reply to Now you’ve gone and done it!

        There is a *nix OS version that already does a lot of what you ask and is user friendly for even the moms and grandparents who aren’t tech-savvy. Its MacOS X. And believe it or not, M$ even makes Office run on it. Since it is also a *nix OS, Mac OS X has available to it all that lovely open source software with a relatively easy recompile via the XCode developer tools which are downloadable from Apple’s site.

        Now here is a real surprize, I am typing to you on a machine that is 8 years old, should not have gone past MacOS 8, was one of the last Mac clones (Power Computing), and thanks to a gent named Ryan Remple, I’m running MacOS X 10.3.9, code-named Panther. I am even using some PC components in the form of hard drives and burners in it via a third party upgrade. To those who shudder at using an Apple OS on anything at all, one can even install Linux, as in YellowDog Linux.

        Like you, I have had my experiences with CP/M, DOS, ‘Doze and other OS’s and realize that there is no “one true way.” Even the current iteration of the MacOS isn’t without its flaws. But from where I sit, it and Linux makes ‘Doze look like a virus.

        • #3180544

          Here here! (hear hear?)

          by cio at alphabetas ·

          In reply to Haven’t you heard . . .

          About time someone said it, although now I’m sure you have
          galvanized the faithful witless bots of Microsoft Borglike
          domination who will jerk that knee and spout some 10 year old
          cliches (which weren’t true then) about how tha Mac is somehow
          not suited for their particular application, etc… Which can be true
          of course- there really is no one size fits all solution- but usually

        • #3180902


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Haven’t you heard . . .

          MacOS X is a huge leap forward for the Mac. It’s incorporation of a BSD/Mach derived kernel and OpenStep derived GUI framework make it one of the most credible personal computer options going. It’s an extremely well-suited OS for end users who don’t want to know what their computers are doing, and provide a number of benefits for those who do, as well.

          MacOS X doesn’t suit my needs nearly as well as a customized Linux setup, but as you noted Mac hardware can run Linux. In fact, the most-portable Linux distribution, Debian, has a Mac architecture port available (so Yellow Dog isn’t the only Linux distro available for the Mac). Luckily for me, Debian also happens to be my distro of choice. I’m sure there are other distros with Mac ports available as well. I’d like to add a reasonably modern Mac (perhaps a Powerbook) to my collection of computers, in fact, and set it up as a dual-boot with Debian.

          Having more options is a good thing. Ignoring options because of bias is not a good thing. You’re right, though: Windows mostly looks like malware, compared to Linux and MacOS X.

      • #3181096

        Type in an Admin password for MS is here

        by andeanderson ·

        In reply to Now you’ve gone and done it!

        You say “having constantly restricted users who can type in an admin password to install something and then have the OS revert back to a user mode”.

        Microsoft already has that. Microsoft calls it “Run As” and it was initially meant for Network Admins to be able to do updates and installations without having to log the user off and then login as administrator. But, the users are fast finding it and how to use it on networks that are not set-up correctly.

        • #3180898


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Type in an Admin password for MS is here

          The “Run As” feature is broken, anyway.

          Actually, to be strictly accurate, the “Run As” feature isn’t broken: the permissions system on which it’s built is broken. Even when you’re not running something as the Administrator, malware and security crackers find it disturbingly easy to escalate and bypass system privileges to do damage to a Windows system. The “Run As” feature is pretty much useless except as a tool to make end users think twice before screwing things up. Often, end users don’t bother to think twice, anyway. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink, as the old saying goes.

    • #3242545

      Two Sides

      by firstpeter ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I think (or at least HOPE) folks are grounded in reality enough to accept that a Windows-based platform isn’t the solution for everything. And by the same token neither is a *nix-based system. Which one is better? That depends on a lot of factors, including your situation.

      You can make the same argument with Office. Is Office the best business productivity tool? In some cases, absolutely. In others it’s a waste of money and aspirin (or beer, depending upon how you deal with crashes and exploits).

      Plain and simple. To try and espouse one approach as “the best” in all (or even most) situations is absurd at best. I agree with jd – let’s leave the fanatical approach out of it and accept that they’re both tools and better suited than the other in different situations.

    • #3242521

      *nux zealots

      by wordworker ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      >>Never get apps written for generic linux if each has a different layout of where their config files are located.<< Just one example of why *nix isn't the be-all, end-all OS. All the puling and whining in all the Web sites in the world isn't going to change the fact that corporate America likes Microsoft, and Microsoft products, for the most part and in most settinsg, do what they're supposed to do. You can find talented people to use and configure them. The *nux zealots are considered the "weird" ones nowadays. Deal with it.

      • #3242501

        Missed the point here didn’t you

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to *nux zealots

        I was pointing out that there isn’t a single tool for all jobs.

        Corporate America using MicroSoft because that is all the non-tech execs know. MicroSoft does one thing well, advertise.

        Watch was SuSE does. They have a whole migration plan that gets your entire business off of windows on to linux. Server AND desktop.

        People that follow one or the other religiously are going to be out in the cold. Better get a nice coat.

        • #3242454

          Not really

          by wordworker ·

          In reply to Missed the point here didn’t you

          >even when presented with hard facts people refuse to budge on there religion of OS worship< I think "corporate America" questions the so-called hard facts. I think Novell SuSE is too late to the dance. People who think a significant number of customers are going to migrate "off Windows" are going to go hungry. Better start saving cans of pork & beans.

        • #3242444

          Pork and Beans

          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to Not really

          I prefer SPAM. It holds longer.

          Regardless of whether all of “corporate America” questions the facts or not, some companies, large and small, will move because it’s a better O/S for their situation. And as they are successful and the corporate user base grows more tools will develop, migration will become easier, and more companies will jump. I agree that SUSE has an uphill battle, and I don’t think in the next 5 years you’re going to see a major power change, but I would be hesitant to count them out as a player.

          Personally, you won’t see me going *nix anytime soon because my clients generally fit in to the MS camp and won’t switch. Are there problems? Sure. Is there a big enough (in their mind) issue out there to compel them to make the switch? Not really. Will I go *nix when they do? Probably – I do like to eat (more than SPAM).

        • #3239292

          a couple notes

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Pork and Beans

          1. I think the migration is more widespread than you realize. Entire city governments, both in the US and abroad, are standardizing on Linux solutions and chucking their old Windows licenses out with the trash. Major corporations are doing quite a bit of business with Linux vendors. The winds are changing.

          2. SuSE is by no means the only option for migration from Windows. In fact, despite Novell’s major push for migration from Windows to SuSE, many of the big stories I’m seeing about organizations making the switch are using Linux distributions other than SuSE. That doesn’t mean SuSE isn’t picking up steam, but it isn’t the only distro to do so.

        • #3239279


          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to a couple notes

          Absolutely on both counts. My ultimate point was simply that SUSE being “late to the dance” (which I think is generally accepted) does not imply that they won’t be able to make waves. All it takes is a success story or two and folks recognize that *nix is viable. Most corporations probably won’t move (nor should they), but life won’t be all MS.

          Different situations call for different strategies and tactics.

        • #3239203

          just an example

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to a couple notes

          of linux groups that are making migration plans. I know it is not the linux that governments are switching to, but for people looking to switch but want someone to hold their hand this will be a big asset.

          But you will never hear about that in the ms weekly, will you? more fud.

        • #3239207

          Diverse workers

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Not really

          that are not running around worshiping at the MS alter but are skilled in many will be better suited to survive.

          If you would have actually had read what I was posting, it was that the mixed network is going to be the future, not that MS is done.

          You are EXACTLY the type of person this post was about. Thanks for stepping up and making my point.

        • #3239104

          *nux is to OSs as ….

          by wordworker ·

          In reply to Diverse workers

          …the Libertarian Party is to American politics. It may be a decent alternative but it will never be mainstream. Beat your chests all you want about Apache, but the best you can hope for is that the less than 0.001% of corporate shops running Linux takes a dramatic jump in the next 10 years to say, 0.002%.

        • #3239042

          Well just stay away from

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to *nux is to OSs as ….

          The Internet and you just may be getting a little closer to the mark. The fact is that there are not only two alternatives even if you lump all of the Unix/Linux into one group and Windows into another. there are numerous other OS’s available and they all fill a role in the market.

          I’ve yet to see any company attempt to run Windows on their mainframes which is so small a part of the market like banks most big financial institutions and the like.

          I have yet to see a decent sized server farm running Windows either as it is just not scalable enough for the requirements.

          The best that can be said is that 2003 ES is good for small servers and that is it. If you want to try it on a big server it just will not work properly and suck up system resources like they are going out of style.

          But stay with your small servers with at best Quad processors running and be happy as the real competition passes you by and leaves you on the IT Scrap Heap. Currently Thin Clients are making a come back and will in all likely hood replace a lot of the workstations in the near future and these will require high end servers for big business who are already running mainframes and do not need any power on the workstations. You will at least be happy until you realize that you have wedged your self so tightly into a corner that you will be unemployable to all but very small business who have up to 20 computers including their servers!

          Col ]:)

        • #3239024

          thin clients

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Well just stay away from

          You bring up an interesting point, regarding thin clients. I bet we’ll see Microsoft turning out studies wherein the number of computers used in corporate America is measured to show Microsoft market share, and each case of thin clients running from a centralized server will be counted as only one computer (the server) while the Windows boxen will be counted individually. It’s always helpful to skew the number, I suppose.

        • #3235617

          zzzzzzztttttt! Incorrect!

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to *nux is to OSs as ….

          Long story short:
          MS pwns the desktop market with 93%, but Linux is starting to eat into that with almost 3%

          MS only has a 55% share in servers (and losing) *nix holds over 30% and growing.

          Apache pwns with 67% while IIS comes in with only a 21% market share.

          MS is hurting outside the desktop market. They are slowly dying as a server and their upgrade cycles are urking CIOs and CFOs eveywhere. By 2007 *nix is really going to put the hurt on MS because of all the issues IT shops are having with it.

        • #3254979

          keep in mind . . .

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to zzzzzzztttttt! Incorrect!

          These are “low-end servers”. This doesn’t even account for mid-range and high-end servers (stuff that isn’t, never was, and never will be desktop hardware, like the AS/400 all the way up to a Cray or a Linux cluster supercomputer). There’s still a lot of business done on mainframes, believe it or not.

        • #3181521

          Oh 100% agree apotheon

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to zzzzzzztttttt! Incorrect!

          The mainframe market and the various clusters, crays, whatevers out there will probably ALWAYS be on the high end market.

          My point was that the poster stated that MS owns all and *nix has no market share is completely wrong!

          Of course the scalability of Linux puts it in a high end class anyway, but that is a different story 😉

        • #3181637


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to zzzzzzztttttt! Incorrect!

          I hope you didn’t get the impression I was disagreeing with you. I was adding to your comments. Heh.

        • #3181192


          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to zzzzzzztttttt! Incorrect!

          Got it now…I’m a little dense sometimes 🙂

        • #3180391


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to zzzzzzztttttt! Incorrect!

          No problem. It happens to the best of us.

        • #3181044

          You Must Be A Democrat…

          by little-b ·

          In reply to *nux is to OSs as ….

          …you are pulling statistics from your buttocks! (-:

          Approximately 27% of Corporations today are NOW using some form of Linux and according to surveys, the number is increasing in percentage the double digits. Sure, this is in combination with other OS’s, but that is a hefty figure.

          Like the previous posts indicate, Linux is becoming a viable alternative for servers and desktops in many corporations and will continue to do so. Even software like Symantec’s LiveState Recovery software boots from a Linux kernel. Symantec has jumped on the capability of using Linux to host a storage system instead of having to buy expensive MS licenses. Almost all of Novell’s products are designed to run on MS, Novell, and Linux and they support all their products on Linux as well as the SUSE NOS itself. Application vendors are starting in droves to program new products for the Linux platform. This is no small scale initiative.

          This has gotten MS very worried! So what have they started?…an initiative to “simplify” their licensing structure to make it easier and cheaper for customers to upgrade. The mere fact that Linux is becoming attractive is now causing MS to shake in their boots and start becoming more reasonible, or at least, a little more competitive in pricing.

          You, as a staunch MS devotee should be thanking your lucky stars for a MS competitor and should, in turn, buy some Linux servers to support the continuation of reasonable MS pricing.

          Most corporations look at viable, safe alternatives when the pricing structure gets out of hand to support their goals. MS has dominated the market, but their pricing structure has gotten way out of hand for many businesses. The average company spends approximately $650 per year, per user on Microsoft licensing (all products like XP, Office, server licensing, etc.). The upside to SUSE Linux is the average cost for licensing is $150! If you have 25 users, that may not be much of a cost savings. But, corporations with thousands of users are beginning to take note. Sure, there will be a greater training investment, but it may be more cost effective to do a switch or at least, switch those who can fit into the environment with more ease.

          Microsoft will not be replaced for a long time, if ever, but the use of homogenous networks that take advantage of the strong points of the various OS’s in combination with the price breaks these technologies have to offer will definitely be on the increase!

        • #3180654

          diverse workers indeed

          by joyceb ·

          In reply to Diverse workers

          Hi all,

          I just wanted to add another point in here. I am an American, but I live/work in Europe. I’ve also done work in the Middle East and Africa, and I have to say that when it comes to looking at trends in the computer world I agree with everything you have all said up to this point about marketing needs/wants vs. tech needs wants, and what corporate America does, and how *nix mibhg be better technically, but MS might fit better culturally, etc.

          However, I’d also like to point out that the macro trends that drive vendors are changing. The US is currently the largest installed base of high tech, and the largest spender, as well as the home of the majority of technical development. But the fastest growing markets are all outside the US. Which country is next is up for debate, but the sheer volume of population makes this true. And the things that make Linux appealing – low costs, runs on older, cheaper systems, has free bits etc. are even more appealing in places where MS does not have an extensive entrenched user base. Additionally, many people in other countries, like many Americans, are proud to use local products, as well as sometimes having languages too particular for the big guys to localize for, and they need local stuff. Open source is terribly appealing to them, because it’s easier to get there with open source than MS.

          Corporate America is the driving force of many trends today, but so is Corporate Europe, and in partiuclar, the UK and Germany. The UK acts an awful lot like the US, while Germany has been much more open to the open source movement. There is a whole set of topics in there, but it is a point to consider and it isn’t just that SuSE was originally German. Debian and Red Hat can be found in Germany too.

          Eastern Europe is selling faster than Western Europe for most IT companies, and Asia is the next hot ground, whether that’s India and Southeast Asia, or the possibilities of China. As those markets grow, mature and increase in spending power, I think we’ll find that different products will meet different needs. I disagree with the poster who said Linux has missed the boat. If the poster means Corp. America, this is true for some (although not all) and in an absolute sense, meaning the world’s IT market, and not just the US, then no, it hasn’t missed anything at all, and it might be wise to read Clayton Christiansen or at least think about his concept of disruptive technologies and see how Linux and more importantly the open source movement are actually creating new spaces. Looking at what is best in a mature market is different than in one that has more green fields.

          What happens in other countries may not affect your business, especially if it doesn’t operate or partner in those countries, but it may affect your global operations, and it will also affect the vendors and how they respond as those other geographies come to represent greater percentages of their total revenue opportunities and costs.

          Thanks for letting me jump in,

        • #3180647


          by noorman ·

          In reply to diverse workers indeed

          in China M$ have already lost; they ‘re making their own OS(es) …
          No Windoze needed there !

        • #3180891

          Thanks for the perspective

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to diverse workers indeed

          While I don’t think America is tied in too tightly with MS for change, your point is one I hadn’t even thought about. But yes, as governments make the change that means a large user base. A large user base means more software written for it and better driver support.

        • #3181059

          Linux is toooooooooo late.

          by tcpip4u ·

          In reply to Not really

          We are a core Novell shop with very heavy MS integration and things are good. Just to give you an idea of what going on in the OS war, our Novell regional sales Director just left Novell because Novell was pushing him to sell 2 million open desktop license per year, thats insane. He’s been with Novell for 13 years and gave it up Thats insane. I’m sure he thought long and hard about it. Linux is too late to the dance, the dance floor is full and all the ladies have partners. I don’t need to stres where he ended up but just to give you a little clue he’s working in The latitude is 47.674N. The longitude is -122.12W.

        • #3180895

          if the shoe fits . . .

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Linux is toooooooooo late.

          You are the sort of zealot of whom jdclyde was speaking, I think. Wow.

        • #3180863

          Are you saying the OS market is saturated?

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Linux is toooooooooo late.

          I think you might need to take Econ101 or Marketing101 again. The OS market is FAR from saturated and the barries to entry are small.

        • #3179654


          by dogzilla ·

          In reply to Not really

          It may not seem like significant numbers are going to migrate off Windows just yet but consider the increasing amount of businesses and people that have become slow to upgrade to the latest. I believe this is the “prequel” of things to come. The slower they are to upgrade the more time they have to question and consider the alternative.

        • #3180611

          Microsoft Migration

          by cq_west ·

          In reply to Missed the point here didn’t you

          Ironically, not only does SuSE have a method for going from Microsoft to Linux, Microsoft has a method for going from any version of linux to windows… server AND desktop. You just have to be a Microsoft Partner to get it.

          I agree, there is no one common denominator for OS’s. In some cases, *nix is a better fit for the job – however, keep in mind that the average *nix machine is also more expensive to maintain because you don’t have as many skilled *nix users out there so the price is higher. In some cases, windows is a better fit, but keep in mind the up front cost can be quite staggering. (And just because it’s Windows, doesn’t mean it’s any easier to maintain. There are just more people out there to do it).

          My 2 cents…

        • #3180555

          But since the Nix’s are mainly on

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Microsoft Migration

          Servers in the corporations what is the expense there? Currently on the big server farms or Mainframes M$ just can not compete as they do not have a product scalable enough for the needs of the business.

          Do you remember the Hot Mail mess?

          I have to disagree with your statement that there are not enough people available to maintain any of the Nix’s either as there are still a multitude of Unix Mainframes being used after all where do you think SCO got the money to launch that action against IBM? If Unix was now a lost cause SCO wouldn’t have the available funds to proceed with that case would they?

          The fact that it is a very easy step from Unix to Linux only makes Linux far more attractive to the big end of town who are looking at cutting costs as much as possible while retaining a reliable and secure service. If they had to retrain all of the existing Unix techs to a Windows Platform the costs would be horrendous and the security would be even worse. I’ll not even bother to think about the service either.

          If we where to remove every Nix from the market now the Internet would collapse in a heap and be unusable and Microsoft clearly doesn’t have a product to fill the gap so we would be without the Internet.

          The TOC is a Microsoft myth propagated by studies funded by M$ on the premises that you need to retrain existing workers to use a Nix. In some case this may be true but in many more it isn’t as there are many of us now using a Nix of some description and loving it. If I was forced to drop Apache and go with IIS I wouldn’t be the slightest bit happy and while I could do the job I wouldn’t be comfortable.

          Col ]:)

        • #3180572

          I have to chime in here..

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to Missed the point here didn’t you


          I have to differ with you here. While XP is very bloated and I was really not looking forward to using it, I bought a new Dell box (P4 1G Ram)for home/ fun. It came with a Mcafee firewall and I added Norton AV and Spyware Doctor, I locked out all the ports, and run scans regularly. I have been pleasantly suprised. It just runs.

          So while a *nix box would be arguably more stable I could not use it for the games/ productivity software I want to run. And that, like it or not, is the final word. Until a perfect emulator is developed you will NEVER see a wholesale transition from windows. And by perfect I mean it will support all MS compatible software functions (games and produtivity)and contain drivers for all WinTel hardware (high end graphics cards and assorted “must have” do-dads). That would be a dragon slayer (MS being the dragon).

          I’m interested in any thoughts on this line of thinking….

        • #3180488

          The Dragon

          by cq_west ·

          In reply to I have to chime in here..

          I would agree wholeheartedly with your observation. The problem is not that Windows or *nix is a better solution (admit it, they both have their application). The problem is that most small and medium businesses (and for that matter, home users) want to be able to use software they can pick up off the shelf.

          While *nix does offer some great software tools that are just simply not available for the Windows platform, many line of business applications are tailored to the small/medium business owner that has a small technology budget. These individuals will go out and purchase several windows based machines, and windows based accounting packagequick, and a windows based productivity package (usually office) and start running their business there. They may not be aware that there are comprobable options in the *nix field.

          I’ll admit, *nix has gotten much more user friendly over the past few years. I remember installing my first version of *nix (almost 10 years ago) and finally getting it to work 6 hours later. The same install of windows 95 took me 30-60 minutes.

          In the last year, I have been able to install *nix on several machines in much less time with less hardware compatibility problems (I even got it to run under Microsoft Virtual PC 2004). It still isn’t as mainstream as Microsoft is yet.

          Let’s face it, the Dragon has the field (for now). Everywhere you look, especially as a home user or a small business owner, it’s a Microsoft world.

        • #3181089

          Even Internet usage is debateable

          by andeanderson ·

          In reply to I have to chime in here..

          I just finished moving our company website to a Linux based Apache2 server.

          What I did not realize, and no one said anything about, was that the *.asp pages I had developed for searching our product database would not work on a Linux system.

          So, now I either have to return our website to the MS IIServer or do a database conversion and re-write the *.asp pages to something compatible with Linux.

          Where is the emulator for *.asp?

        • #3179616

          Wrong approach in some ways

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to I have to chime in here..

          In stead of looking to run Windows packages on Linux, maybe the solution is packages that are designed to run on linux that do the same thing.

          There are many applications that have a version for linux, Windows, AND MAC.

          Drivers, as more people use linux more vendors will cater to this market. Remember your marketing classes boys and girls. Where is the biggest oportunity for growth? An existing (saturated) market, or a NEW market that is just opening up? (how quickly people forget as soon as they get out of school everything they learned)

          There are lots of games that are for linux, and as the market grows more will join in on this. Emulators are just to get you over the hump while waiting for the vendors to fill this new market.

          MS compatable? As MS does everything they can to make sure that NOTHING but their software is MS compatable, does this sound like a real goal? Remember that MS is NOT the internet standard, even though they try to make people think they are. If they want to stay in the game, they will be the ones to not make every attempt to MAKE everyone else incompatable so everyone HAS to use their hostage ware.

          What say you? Sound far fetched or right on?

        • #3181078

          The Linux (Open Source) craze is just……. well crazy!!!

          by tcpip4u ·

          In reply to Missed the point here didn’t you

          I deal with making decisions on future technolgy day in and day out. Even in our compan I hear Linux this and open source that. However, when approached they can’t give a legitimate reason why Linux is better other than its free and its more secure. However, is open source really free and more secure than its counterpart in Redmond, WA? Oh, reliability is another point that was brought up… hmmm gotta wonder.

          According to the Gartner Group, there are pro’s and con’s in deploying Linux in any organization. Cost is a huge factor in the OS game but there are other issue that exist in open source as it does in Windows. Sure Microsoft charge quite a bit for their OS, but you get what you pay for. Security patches and hot fixes, its all part of doing business. IT pro’s and consultants make it out as if Linux is an almost perfect OS platform, perhap this maybe the case but I get patch alerts for Suse and Redhat more frequently than the guys in Redmond. Microsoft patches and hot fixes might be bigger but the frequency of the patches and alerts go to Linux. Tech support, how many times have you called Microsoft tech support because of their so called “crappy” OS? Exactly because when their is a problem they try to get the information out to you ASAP. When it come to support for Linux their is no official source you can go to in order to find a solution without paying for it. There may be some learning curve invovled for home users in getting Linux to run but its pretty ridiculous when they need to get help.

          About the migration path from Windows to SuSe that is being offered by SuSe(Novell)…. What do you think is happening here? They are trying to piggy back on the Linux platform to get a bigger share of the pie. I just want everyone to realize that I’m not an OS basher or favor one over the other but this BS about one OS platform being better than other has gone too far. People talk about the two OS without having a great deal of knowledge in reference to ROI, reliability, support, availability of resources, and so forth. On the flipside, if Redmond wanted to broaden their share of the market do you think they would put out propaganda about their OS and the competitions, not to mention a full migration path… If people just stop to think about it its all the same. Does it cost less to hire a sofware engineer to develop code for SuSe vs. Windows. Is tech support available for both? Yes, but one you pay up front and the other you pay when you need it…. either way you pay.

          I’ve worked with Unix, Sun, RedHat, SuSe, HPUX, and Microsoft and to me it does not make much of a difference. The people that enjoy using and supporting Linux go ahead, and vice a versa with people using Windows. Don’t try to cram ideas down people that really don’t care.

          You said that “Corporate America using MicroSoft because that is all the non-tech execs know. MicroSoft does one thing well, advertise.”
          What do you think you are doing…. you are adverising the “Nix” almost a propaganda wouldn’t you say… Just think about it… Its all the same. IT ALL BOILS DOWN TO MONEY, NO ONE WORKS FOR FREE!!!

        • #3179640

          Well I just have to disagree here

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to The Linux (Open Source) craze is just……. well crazy!!!

          Sure you can get a Linux OS for nothing other than the cost of the download but you can also buy it off the shelf so to speak just like Unix which is still very much alive and well thank you very much.

          Just because your particular situation may not suit a Unix like OS doesn’t mean that no one else’s does. As for support you can get plenty and not necessarily on a pay as required basis, if you buy the product off the shelf so to speak the suppliers have to offer a service just like MS has to offer the same service. But if you download the OS and expect never to have to pay for support you are living in dream land as you quite rightly said no one works for free and I very much doubt you would either would you?

          While I have not as yet had dealings with Novell on SUSE if their past record is anything to go by they offered a really good service and it was much better than what MS offered and they didn’t first ask for a credit card to bill you like MS currently does.

          But the real point here is basic security any Nix system is inherently more secure than a similar Windows system even with poor support as it is far harder to get things installed onto a Nix system undetected. When I first started working with computers they took up a large area and used Unix and the big ones still do if for no other reason than MS doesn’t have a product to do the job on that hardware so you only have a choice between a closed source product like Unix or an open source product like Linux to work on these big high end computers as to which is the better is it all relative and depends on the person making the decisions just like which car is better for an individual each person will have a different answer but lets face facts Linux is a cheaper alternative to Unix and that is exactly why places like Novel, IBM and the like are going down the Linux road they can provide it and support it far cheaper than they can a Unix system on their high end units. ON these MS doesn’t get a look in as they just do not have anything capable of running these things even part way right.

          On the mid range servers you will get better performance on a Nix over any Windows OS every day and it is just plain and simple more secure as it is far harder to break into and even harder to install malicious software on no it’s not impossible but it is certainly a lot harder than a Windows system which is so full of holes it isn’t funny.

          Look at Windows 2003 ES one of its new great features was the ability to only allow e-mail to be read by the receiver and the ability to limit it being modified printed or forwarded on but within 2 weeks of its release there was a patch put out to fill a major hole in it and as it was only connected with IE it wasn’t considered as a Critical Patch because the whole idea behind Es was not to have IE installed or working. Well if that was the case just how did you limit the e-mail that was sent out from being altered printed or forwarded?

          There is no “Perfect” system and no matter how hard you try there will always be improvements put out but I did get a laugh out of your observation about the frequency of patches for the Nix’s and Windows. The fact that you seem to think it acceptable to have a hole for at least 1 month if not longer because MS only rolls out patches on a monthly basis now and you where constantly receiving patch updates from RedHat to me shows that RedHat was plugging the holes faster than MS was even attempting to do.

          The fact that Linux is a form of Unix which has been around and proved itself as a solid performer decades before Microsoft was even thought of in that garage should at the very least tell you something. The fact that MS push the higher education schools to only teach MS products and even them only in a limited fashion should also tell you something to.

          The last time I attended a higher education facility training people how to use Office I asked when they where going to learn about performing mail merges and I was told that “We do not do those advanced things here we only cover the basics that will be used in a working life!” Now just what is it that makes grabbing a customer list from a D-Base and sending out personalized form letters to them such an advanced concept? Back in the DOS and early Windows days this was considered as a minimum requirement for a WP operator but today for some reason it isn’t important and is considered as a unlikely application to do.

          Isn’t that the very reason why MS Office got the market because they tied several office applications into one package that made it easy to transfer data between applications and now they do not want to use it. Why is it so?

          Col ]:)

      • #3239297

        err . . .

        by apotheon ·

        In reply to *nux zealots

        “Microsoft products, for the most part and in most settinsg, do what they’re supposed to do.”

        So do Linux and other major open source programs. In fact, I’d say that the open source unix stuff tends to do what it’s supposed to do rather more often than Windows-platform software.

        “You can find talented people to use and configure them.”

        You can also find talented people to use and configure Linux, proprietary UNIX, MacOS X, classic MacOS, BeOS, NeXTstep, MULTICS, OS/400, and just about anything else under the sun. What’s your point?

        “The *nux zealots are considered the ‘weird’ ones nowadays.”

        Not entirely true. Zealots are generally considered “weird” no matter what they worship. They usually don’t see themselves as being considered “weird” as much as others see them as being considered “weird”, though; this may explain why you don’t seem to think Windows zealots are considered weird.

        Corporate America isn’t as wedded to Microsoft as you seem to think. Perhaps you haven’t noticed that IBM, HP, and Novell have all gotten with the Linux program. Perhaps you haven’t noticed that Industrial Light and Magic, Google, and Autozone are heavy Linux users. Perhaps you haven’t noticed that most of the websites in the world, corporate sites included, are running on Apache rather than IIS. Perhaps you’re just not paying attention.

      • #3239164

        Higher Standards

        by n3bu1a ·

        In reply to *nux zealots

        It is important though to hold Microsoft to higher standards – as they do have the largest market share and have the capability of performing much better. I do not have a lot of experience with “alternative” OSs, but I’m pretty irritated with Microsoft’s inability to stay on top of their game. Unfortunately, I’m a little relunctant to spend the time switching/learning an alternative, especially since my firm does 99% of its development in MS technology.

        • #3239093

          That is the point

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Higher Standards

          that there isn’t a single OS that is a fix-all for everyone.

          The point is to not continue to limit the tools that can be used because of ignorance or OS worship.

          At some point, this may be a fit or it may not. Ruling options out before even looking at them will always come back to haunt people sooner or later.

    • #3239240

      look and feel vs practicality and performance

      by black panther ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      We run our main Business ERPII System on UNIX along with our Automated Warehouse System ( because it’s more robust and reliable, less prone to virus etc etc

      I used to work for a Software Company who were up against a constant battle trying to sell their package to customers with a UNIX platform.

      Unfortunately we lost a lot of sales as the competitors Windows based solution had a better look and feel than our UNIX based Thin Client Solution – even though our product won hands down in performance and functionality.

      ** ie it not what it did that was important to them it was what it looked like***

      ( similiar to our society in judging people for the first time )

      What do the banks, insurance companies, rely on ?

      What was / is the internet based on – UNIX.

      The solution for us was to develop a Windows look and feel “Front End” so we were more attractive in the market.

      I agree with your comments … Microsoft is a “powerfull” marketing machine more than a dedicated Software Developer.

      • #3239167

        Mixed up ??

        by rapell ·

        In reply to look and feel vs practicality and performance

        So do you think it is better for the *nix based systems to act as back ends because of their secure feastures other than aesthetics, while M$ can capture front ends for its look and ‘ease of use’?

        • #3239154

          I don’t think so

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Mixed up ??

          But I can see M$ doing just that. Last year they brought a license from SCO which many people thought of as supporting SCO in their Battle against Linux which it may have been but the person in charge of Product Development at M$ may just see it a bit differently after all Billy Boy seems to have a knack for coming up with what he thinks will sell.

          So a Unix back end with a Windows like GUI would make quite a lot of sense. And would not be much of a “Sell” to business as it would still have the M$ Windows Logo on the front and they just would not realize that they where actually using Unix. Of course the source code would not accept anything other than M$ Approved code to run with because M$ would refuse to follow the set standard in an effort to retain their market share. And also allow them to service the Niche Markets that they are currently unable to service and desperately want to break into.

          It really makes a lot more sense that it at first appears to and if implemented would secure M$ market domination for years to come if not forever.

          Col ]:)

        • #3239140


          by black panther ·

          In reply to I don’t think so

          For the backup! – If people havn’t used UNIX before they have no idea!

        • #3239137

          MS and SCO UNIX

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to I don’t think so

          Actually, I suspect that the SCO licenses for which Microsoft paid were earmarked for a particular use when they were purchased. Microsoft probably saw it as an opportunity to kill two birds with one stone: put some legal pressure on Linux and grant Microsoft some UNIX licenses.

          The worth of those UNIX licenses, of course, is probably mostly tied up in the ability to replace the open source systems that Microsoft is still using. This way, Microsoft can start to live up to its big talk just slightly more than before (though certainly not by very friggin’ much). While running SCO UNIX on the back end of some systems is far from ideal from a marketing perspective, it’s a darn sight better than running Linux or *BSD.

          What’s that? You didn’t know Microsoft was using Linux and/or *BSD?

          One of the major problem with Windows servers, particularly in very high transaction rate implementations, is that the integral GUI sucks up a tremendous amount of system resources. Windows servers just can’t keep up with a CLI-only system that doesn’t have to support a wholly superfluous graphical user interface environment. Add to this the fact that Windows suffers an awful lot of downtime, and you get a staggering amount of inefficiency in implementations as a high-load server. In other words, it scales like crap.

          When Microsoft acquired Hotmail, most of Hotmail was running on open source unix (primarily *BSD, if I recall correctly). Microsoft started trying to replace the entire Hotmail infrastructure with Windows servers, but quickly realized how impossible that would be. The compromise was a long-term plan to phase out the detectable non-Windows servers that faced directly on the Internet (primarily webservers and proxies, I would imagine) and keep the high-load back end running on open source unices.

          If that can all be replaced by proprietary UNIX systems, this would free up Microsoft’s FUD factory to start pointing out their migration away from open source OSes in what they’ll certainly call “legacy” implementations because, as Microsoft will claim, FLOSS is not secure. It’s all BS, of course, but that won’t stop MS from making such claims.

          This, at least, is what I would think Microsoft would plan to do with SCO licenses. I suppose I could be wrong.

        • #3239083

          Numbers, jd?

          by wordworker ·

          In reply to MS and SCO UNIX

          Okay jd, so I exaggerate the tiny market share numbers. You haven’t quoted any facts to support your own brand of zealot-calling-the-pot-black. Here’s one for you:

          Market researcher IDC expects to announce within weeks that Linux PC market share in 2003 hit 3.2%, overtaking Apple Computer Inc.’s MacOS. And the researcher expects Linux to capture 6% of this market by 2007. That’s still tiny compared with Microsoft’s 94% share.

          Whoo-whoo! 6%!

          But wait, what about this:
          The Open Source Development Labs, the organization that employs Linux leader Linus Torvalds, has laid off nearly a sixth of its staff as part of a shift to new priorities.

          And for your information, jd, your name-calling in these threads is pretty juvenile. Maybe IT-Lobo is your pseudonym?

        • #3239062

          About numbers

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Numbers, jd?

          Yes, that is for PC’s. Linux is still young on the [b]PC[/b] in the corporate world.

          Go out and find how many [b]SERVERS [/b]are running *nix and you will find two things. One, the number is MUCH higher, and two, the number is inacruate.

          As many *nix servers are not running under a license agreement purchased somewhere, how do you propose to determine how many there are?

          Look at your bigger web and mail servers and most will NOT be MS. Now why is that?

          Why do many of your bigger corporations use a Domino server instead of Exchange?

          As for me being the zealot, remember I am the one that is saying use the best tool for the job, not that you have to use one or the other. That was your push, not mine.

          That does it, I’m leaving TR (thanks wordworker)…..

          I don’t think so.

          As for “name-calling”, are you refering to my ONE reference about you being “clueless” because of the information you have presented? That is the big juvenile stunt that gets me compared to Lobo? Talk about thin skin. Go back and re-read the posts, I didn’t see a single other reference that could be concidered calling you names. Or did you read it in someone elses post?

        • #3239027

          What planet do you call home?

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Numbers, jd?

          Why is this posted in response to my post, but addressed to jdclyde? That doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

          Considering that the numbers I’ve seen quoted elsewhere in this thread listed only 2% for PC desktop systems, it looks like your figures are actually improving on Linux market share, rather than decreasing it as you seem to expect. Are you sure you know what side of an argument you’re on?

          You clearly haven’t read a whole lot about what’s actually happening at OSDL. Yes, a number of programmers have been laid off, but that’s only in the OSDL headquarters in Oregon. The restructuring to which the articles refer involves expansion into additional markets, including new offices in China and Korea (where previously Japan had the only OSDL offices in Asia) as well as several additional locations in Europe. Are you sure you actually finished reading an article about the subject?

          Perhaps you should pay more attention to market trends and industry technology standards. The most commonly used mail server on the planet is Sendmail (open source, often run on Linux), not MS Exchange Server. The most commonly used webserver on the planet is Apache (open source, often run on Linux), not MS Internet Information Server. All those little router/firewall appliances you can buy from the store with names like Linksys and Buffalo on them for use in home and small business networks run embedded Linux, not Windows. The fastest supercomputer in Europe is a Linux cluster in Spain, but there are no Windows supercomputers.

        • #3239020

          Now be fair to him

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to What planet do you call home?

          He probably read that in the M$ mag as proof that Linux was on the decline.

          I’ll bet there was no mention of the anti M$ sediment that is currently being shown by many of the Asian Countries and the rush to develop Turbo Linux for these markets in these markets as an alternative to Windows.

          While the USA might rule the world in computing at the moment things are rapidly changing in other parts of the world and there are a lot of incentives being provided by Governments to produce an alternative System.

          But the simple fact is that if people and companies are unwilling to embrace change they will be left behind and others will take their place.

          Dare I mention the recent Court Ruling in Europe that M$ Lost? 😀

          Col ]:)

        • #3180639

          On SuperComputers

          by gentlerf ·

          In reply to What planet do you call home?

          You might also mention the 1024 node cluster of PowerMacs at Virginia Tech which run MacOS X which just happens to be Unix based via Darwin and FreeBSD

        • #3239053

          Dam you Apotheon

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to MS and SCO UNIX

          I was going to use Hot Mail as an example of just how unsuitable Windows whatever was to high volume servers. 🙁

          It is something highly visible to everyone who even plays with a computer and I know a lot of ex Hot Mail users who dropped it like a hot potato when M$ acquired it as they had way too many problems associated with their Hot Mail accounts. Which are or where great for travelers as they could log on from anywhere and get and send E-Mail, now most of them are using Yahoo as a better service.

          But I wouldn’t mind betting that M$ will bring out a Unix platform with a Windows like GUI as their next Server Product as 2003 in all of its incarnations has not proved as secure as M$ touted when they released it. They have had egg on their collective faces ever since particularly when at the launch the M$ sales people claimed that they had been testing in in real life environment for over 6 months [I think it was but it was a long time even by M$ standards} and no holes had been discovered. Then within 2 weeks the first patch was released to cover a problem in 2003. Maybe I’m just cynical but I do not believe that M$ could have been told of a problem or found the problem and rolled out a patch in that short a time they must have been working on it while the M$ Representatives where telling us all just how great it was and how it was almost unbreakable. 😀

          Col ]:)

        • #3239048

          There you go again

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Dam you Apotheon

          always muddying up the water with facts and logic.

          How are we supose to have an intellegent conversation back and fourth when you don’t leave room for an opposing view because of the facts in the case?

        • #3239034

          I’m SORRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to There you go again

          Nah not really:D I do think there is a place for everything in the current market and it is the server and Notebook sides that are the ones currently growing at an alarming rate. Currently the Workstation market is at best stagnant and maybe even slipping a little compared to last year.

          Currently AMD seems to have forgotten about their Mobile CPU and is concentrating on their Dual Core 64 bit CPU’s and Intel is cleaning up the market with their Centreno Platform and are introducing that technology into their upcoming range of CPU’s which will only make them far more attractive to the business as they can save money in running the things and air conditioning as the masses of CPU’s in their servers will be running cooler so not as much AC will be required to keep things cool. 😉

          Now I’ve done it haven’t I? I’ve broadened the discussion away from the OS’s to include CPU’s as well! Woe is me. :p

          Col ]:)

        • #3180637

          just how great it was and how it was almost unbreakable

          by noorman ·

          In reply to Dam you Apotheon

          That was what we were told about XP too, LOL

        • #3180550

          Well I wasn’t gong to mention that one

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to just how great it was and how it was almost unbreakable

          Mainly it was before the much touted M$ “Trusted Computing” came out and Windows 2003 was the first new M$ product released after that momentous event.

          I got a real laugh by looking at the faces of those in the room that I was in saying just how great it was and that the demo machine had 4 CPU’s. Most of these people could not comprehend a Dual CPU computer let alone something with several hundred CPU’s in it. I can still remember the look of wonder on their faces when they saw 4 individual CPU usage monitors in the Task Manager they thought it was a miracle.

          The fact that I was at that time using 4 Xeon’s on the small servers that I was making didn’t matter these people where transfixed by that sight. At the time I was wondering if I was in a room full of Professionals or interested armatures I’m still inclined to believe the latter.

          But if you want to go back to the XP launch it was even funnier just the reactions on the face of the people there about all the new advances and there I was thinking about all the new as yet undiscovered holes. But it was never an issue to these people their opinion seemed to be well “It’s newer so it has to be better” and there I was thinking I have already got the 98 Desktops fairly well locked down what am I going to be facing now.

          But what was even better was the open question time after the release where the technical guys where there to answer questions a group of people gathered around them all bombarding them with trivial questions mostly about supported drivers and the like and I only got to ask one question which was “What is the Overhead required to run this thing?” Of course they chose not to answer that one. 😀

          Col ]:)

        • #3180871

          watch the bootup screens

          by dpatillo ·

          In reply to I don’t think so

          Have you guys ever watched the boot up screens on a SCO BOX? A lot of SCO is licensed from, you guessed it, MICRO$OFT in the form of Xenix. Microsoft owns/owned Xenix. Why do they need to “license” SCO to get *nix technology? The answer is “They do not need to!” Remember, the source code of linux is free.

          The thing that would be devastating to linux is for MS to go totally open source. I hate to think about it!

        • #3179621

          no way

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to watch the bootup screens

          I would absolutely [b]love[/b] Microsoft to go 100% open source! I’m not married to the penguin. I like it because it’s good, and because it’s open source. If Microsoft went all OSS, it would either get wiped out entirely or its software would finally really start getting good. Either way, we win.

          Plus, y’know, all those Microsoft-created compatibility issues would evaporate.

        • #3179567

          Please god let them open source

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to watch the bootup screens

          Then when I have to kludge together some app and wonder why it isn’t making a library call correctly (is it me or is it the OS) or if I need to get down and dirty with the system, I like to see what is happening other than (There was an error at 0x20897587)
          Down with the black box, up with open source!

        • #3239096

          It is a fact, sorry to say

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Mixed up ??

          that the windows users ARE windows users because they like all the pretty little pictures and don’t have to know anything.

          Heaven forbid someone should have to learn something.

          This is especially true in America because we have such a high concentration of lazy people that expect top way for bottom perfomance.

          And think about it. It is the exec that approves or denies which systems get put in and which don’t. It isn’t the techs like wordworker that make that choice. And what do the execs have to base their decision on? Well, they have seen a MS add and it is pretty and even they can use it.

          With major players using this, it is funny to see just how little people like wordworker know about what is going on in the computer market. Some MS drone told him that Windows has 99.998% of the market and he is CLUELESS enough to believe that?

        • #3239047

          Zealot In Sheep’s Clothing?

          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to It is a fact, sorry to say

          JD – are you really a *nix zealot in an independent thread’s clothing? I hope not – your earlier posts made a lot of sense, and I’m afraid you lose a LOT of credibility if you’ve fallen to “the dark side” (whichever side that may be). While that credibility may be lost on a MS-zealot anyway, I suspect those folks who may be “open” to *nix (semi-pun FULLY intended, incidentally) would have given ample consideration to what you pointed out…as long as they don’t think you’re blasting one side or another.

          I’m not even sure YOU made this post. Your “fact” that Windows users are so because of the “pretty little pictures” and because they “don’t have to know anything” is completely off-base and wrong, and I know you know it.

          Besides, a statement like that completely contradicts what you said earlier about one being right for a particular situation. If Windows is just, um, pretty window-dressing (wow – two puns in one reply!) with no realy function then you really can’t argue that one is better suited for a particular situation – the latest logic would dictate that Windows is never the best solution.

          Don’t let people get to you on this. The entire start of your thread was devoted not to an MS – *nix war but to letting people know that folks who fall solely to one side or another need to understand that each is best suited to a particular place.

          Back up a bit and let’s keep this out of a flame war. There are plenty enough of those already here to go around.

        • #3239008

          Window dressing, now that is funny

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Zealot In Sheep’s Clothing?

          I am not trying to take one side or the other. But when someone comes from one side blindly, I will try to show the reasons that this is not logical.

          I run a mixed environment now. I would even have a few more Windows servers now if my boss would let me. got a win2k server license sitting on the shelf not even being used and I can’t do anything with it.

          Using the right tool for the job means look at the good and the bad of each.

          Windows has a lot of applications that you can run. There are lots of unified messeging systems that would integrate well with our domino system, if we could use that Windows license that is already paid for.

          I would never concider running a web server on Windows because of security and performance. Same for ftp.

          Windows got where it is by being easy, not good. OS2 warp was more stable, but not marketed is well. The one thing MS does better than anyone is marketing. I think they are even selling new refrigirators to the eskimos as we speak.

          Now if windows 95/98/ME/NT4 would all just go away things would be so much easier. I can deal with a win2k or XP system. They still lock up, but not nearly as often. The also do make it easy to get work done with a minimal amount of training. That is good for business.

          Thanks for the slap to get me back on track!

        • #3235671

          You have it easy

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Window dressing, now that is funny

          I have one class of clients who run a mission critical application which only runs on NT and then nothing newer than NT4.

          Because this is one of those limited applications currently there are no plans for rewriting it so I’m stuck with NT4 in site offices so keep the plant running. As this is an earthworks program that involves laser sighting and measuring equipment all over the construction site the software package is a very small expense when compared to the machinery on-site and the fact that the computers are in a very hostile environment doesn’t matter as they are virtually nothing to replace when they die from dust inhalation which turns into mud when it rains and short circuits the M’Boards at the same time.

          I just love the way that at every M$ meeting that I go to they just brush over the ease of migration to 2003 but fail to consider some mission critical applications like this that just can not be moved.

          Col ]:)

        • #3180506

          NT4 compatibility

          by noorman ·

          In reply to You have it easy

          have you ever tried what ‘s described here ?

          I can’t see why that program (developed for NT4) wouldn’t run in Win2000 ?

          or here:

        • #3181092

          Well provided you do not run 2000

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to You have it easy

          In Native mode it sought of works.

          But even the maker doesn’t recommend anything newer than NT4 and since there are millions of $ in equipment around the place the cost of the disposable computer is way less than the fuel used on a single job. If they muck it up too the cost of backfilling will exceed the cost of the computer by at least a factor of 10 so the companies involved are not interested.

          Actually now it works quite well as I can have a disposable NT4 unit on-site and the NT4 unit back at head quarters as virtually a stand alone server that only downloads specs via CD to the various site offices I do not have an security worries as there are no longer any form of Internet connections or any connections at all to the outside world I don’t even need an AV program really but I use one none the less. When we tried this program on a 2000 platform it failed to work correctly and instead of allowing me to fault find it was cheaper to keep the NT4 station going when I first tried this I had both working with the NT4 as the control and the 2000 as a working slave comparing outputs. If the 2000 specs had of been worked to at least $100,000.00 Au of refill work would have been required so even if the on-site computer sets the company back a couple of K it really is small change and these units are only expected to last the life of the job, if they keep working longer it is an added bonus but the cost of replacing the on-site workstation is added into every tender.

          Of course the real problems come about when you try to integrate the 2000 system running in mixed mode into a 2003 ES domain it just doesn’t want to play nice at all and M$ solution is to move the 2000 unit to native mode which this program doesn’t like at all.

          After some very long meetings with the MS Technical staff here it was decided that I stick to NT4 units to run this particular program on as it drove them nuts as well. 😀

          We just couldn’t get consistent results from the 2000 units which at first the techs didn’t think was overly important as we where only talking about a 2 inch difference in most places but when I told them of what was involved in refilling those 2 inches they very rapidly lost interest and they didn’t want to guarantee that it would work and certainly they where unprepared to foot the costs incurred if it didn’t.

          Col ]:)

      • #3239166

        Mixed up ??

        by rapell ·

        In reply to look and feel vs practicality and performance

        So do you think it is better for the *nix based systems to act as back ends because of their secure features other than aesthetics, while M$ can capture front ends for its look and ‘ease of use’?

    • #3239051

      Just wondering….

      by geekchic ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      What if the bulk of homes and businesses used Linux…do you think that then it would also be more vulerable to being hacked apart?

      Now, understand that I do not know much about the internal workings of Linux! I am just suggesting that pehaps people with that type of “skill” would want to disrupt whatever would make the biggest impact. If Linux is currently only used by 2 to 6 percent of world then there wouldn’t be much thrill in spending time trying to disrupt the services that it supports.

      We currently use a variety of operating systems including Windows, MAC, Apache, Unix and Linux. Of course it seems we are constanting updating the Windows product but, it is the one we use most often.

      So, what do you think? If Linux was the #1 OS would we be having some of the same problems with it as we are with MS??

      • #3239043

        Without a Doubt

        by firstpeter ·

        In reply to Just wondering….

        Firefox is a good example of that. I heard folks touting how safe and secure it was. And if I recall last week it actually topped the list of critical bugs. Why? Because xM people downloaded it and bought into the “fact” that it’s a more secure product.

        Now, I don’t want to imply that it’s NOT a more secure product all told – but at this point folks are starting to realize that what Firefox got along with xM downloads is a big ol’ bullseye painted on it. Why? Because as someone wise said in an earlier post – folks don’t hack for the money (for the most part) – it’s all about the pride of accomplishment. So if I can hack the “ultra-secure” Firefox that xM people moved to, I get a star on my chest.

        When the dust settles and all is said and done I don’t have the slightest idea who has the better browser. But I do think you hit it right on the head – if Linux was in MS’ place right now we’d have a completely different set of threads going about who is better and more secure.

        • #3239004

          alarmist absurdity

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Without a Doubt

          It’s hard to believe that people are so up in arms over Firefox having such a bad week. News flash, folks: it topped the charts for one week because it had two vulnerabilities come up at the same time. Guess what: it had to happen eventually, just as going several weeks with none has happened more than once already. The fact that Microsoft’s IE also lucked out at the same time, with a week in which it only had one vulnerability come to light, doesn’t make Firefox “less secure” than IE.

          What it does do is make the Microsoft “zealots” a lot more annoying.

          Firefox is undeniably more secure than IE, for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it’s not tied directly into the OS, and thus doesn’t grant a direct pass-through from the World Wide Web to your OS kernel processes. Second, it doesn’t grant arbitrary remote code execution through ActiveX, one of the worst misfeatures in the history of Microsoft. Third, its vulnerabilities get patched with immediacy, in a few days at most, whereas with IE you’re lucky if it gets patched in less than a month, and there are all too common cases of vulnerabilities surviving unpatched for six months or more. In fact, according to Secunia, there are currently 19 unpatched IE 6.x vulnerabilities, dating as far back as 13 March 2003, and an additional ten vulnerabilities that have received only “partial fixes”. Meanwhile, those two minor vulnerabilities that everyone has been so excited about for Firefox were patched with the release of Firefox version 1.0.4, mere days after their discovery.

          As for Linux . . .
          The situation is even more lopsided for Linux vs. Windows than it is for Firefox vs. IE. For one thing, all of IE’s vulnerabilities are also Windows vulnerabilities, because IE is integrated directly into core OS functionality in Windows. This allows for rapid and easy privilege escalation for intruders and easy circumvention of security measures meant to stop arbitratry remote code execution. In addition to this, there are the software architecture characteristics of the OSes themselves.

          On one hand you’ve got Linux. Linux, like any unix, is a true multi-user system, with strict privilege separation and sharply defined separation between “userland” and kernel processes, rendering privilege escalation almost impossible outside of social engineering (which does an end-run around technology entirely to take advantage of user stupidity, anyway, and equally affects users of any OS, assuming equal stupidity). There’s also the difficulty of arbitrary remote code execution, as Linux, like any unix, doesn’t play user-obsequious games with trying to execut every bit of code into which it comes in contact, based on a file extension. This is how image-embedded and macro-based malicious mobile code gets propagated, and it’s nearly impossible for it to do so on a unix system: the user basically has to tell it to run with a conscious decision, thus bringing us back to social engineering as the major exploit of the system’s weaknes (the human). Even if you get the user to execute some malicious piece of code, it only runs with the permissions of the user which, if you’ll remember from my previous mention of strict privilege separation, means that malicious code is very limited in what it can do, thus essentially emasculating what might otherwise be a very dangerous virus. A virus designed to wipe out the boot sector and file allocation table of a drive, for instance, that is only run from a normal user account will simply fail to execute properly. No harm done. All data intact.

          On the other hand, we’ve got Windows. Windows does not have strict privilege segregation. It’s not a true multi-user system. It is, in fact, a single-user system with a user profiles application laid over the top of it to make it look like a multi-user system to the credulous user. Privilege escalation is extremely easy in Windows because of this. Additionally, because of the interconnectedness of all the kernel-integrated functionality of a Windows system, even when user privilege separation might stand in the way of privilege escalation, hostile code can simply bypass user permissions entirely and just access system functionality through intermediary applications. The canonical example of this is Internet Explorer, though that is by no means the only example. Furthermore, application and service operation in Windows relies heavily on RPCs (remote procedure calls), even for internal and intra-application interprocess communication. It’s so bad that MS SQL Server won’t run properly without RPC services running, and much of the feature set of the Windows GUI is crippled if denied access to RPCs (for instance, you can’t drag and drop with Windows Explorer without using RPCs). Finally, to round out the comparison, Windows happily executes code willy-nilly based on file extensions, automatically and generally without consulting with the user, and since the user privileges bleed across different user accounts, including the admin account, that means that by simply writing a little clever code and naming it with a convenient file extension a malicious security cracker can create a quick piece of code that will own the box in seconds.

          Besides, everybody runs with an administrator-privileged user account in Windows, since you basically can’t do ANYthing useful in Windows without admin rights (another distinct disadvantage as compared with unices, but tied in with the fact that Windows is fundamentally a single-user system in any case).

          Don’t forget about that bit about faster response times on vulnerability patches, as for Firefox vs. Internet Explorer. The same people at MS that are neglecting IE are also neglecting Windows. Meanwhile, the Linux kernel gets patches [i]much faster[/i] than Firefox does, if you can believe that. Whereas Firefox gets its patches in a few days, the Linux kernel gets them in a few hours. I’ve seen patches for Linux posted in less than two hours after they were reported. I don’t remember a Windows patch being released in less than a couple weeks, at the absolute best.

          If Linux was the inarguable leader on the desktop and Microsoft only had 2% of that market, but all else was equal, we’d still be complaining about the lack of security of Windows, guaranteed.

          Keep in mind that Apache, which runs on Linux systems all over the world, holds sixty-something percent of the web server market and gets hammered on a regular basis with new attacks, and yet it is Microsoft’s IIS that falls on its face on a regular basis because of its inferior security of design. Popularity is not the sole arbiter of security issues with software. In fact, the more popular open source software becomes, the more people there are finding and fixing vulnerabilities before a writer of malicious code ever finds them. The common wisdom regarding market penetration leading to security issues is reversed when considering open source software development, and that is one of its greatest strengths.

        • #3235922

          Back Up One

          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to alarmist absurdity

          Back up just a bit – I don’t know that everyone is “up in arms” about Firefox having such a bad week. The point is it’s not 100% secure, it isn’t now, nor has it been. I think we can all agree on that one, right? Regardless of where the problem stemmed from (OS or Application) the issue of security is that Firefox could have been protected ahead of time to prevent what happened (as evidenced by the fact that there is a patch available for it). Does that mean it’s a bad program? No, it just means it not 100% secure.

          So my point isn’t that it’s more/less secure than IE as functional product – I haven’t the slightest idea. I’ve heard both sides of it and I’m not qualified to make any determination one way or another. I do know it’s probably more secure in application because it’s a smaller target for all the malcontents in the world that want to get a big gold star for doing something malicious. IE is much more lucrative because it’s still what, 90% of the market? (I’m not sure how accurate that one is)

          So to the original point from the Chic:
          “Do you think that then it [Firefox in this case] would also be more vulerable to being hacked apart?”

          I don’t think anyone aside from a zealot can answer anything but “yes”. (someone stop me if I’m being too general here – I’m not trying to be condescending) The lower-key you are the safer you are in application. Nobody is going to hack my proprietary software app because even if they ran across it a total of two users doesn’t make it worth their while. They don’t stand to gain anything from it, and they’re not going to much of a sense of pride if they pull it off.

          The moment we assume that our product (whatever product) is totally secure is the moment we set ourselves up for a big dose of hubris. (I’ve always wanted to use that word in a post – forgive me) That’s life. People, even bad people, are creative, and they will find ways around it.

          Now my post dealt primarily with Firefox, an open-source application that’s well accepted (rightfully so – it’s a great alternative). I took Chic’s post to refer to any “mainstream” open source; I may have over generalized the intent in my speaking about Firefox. But I’ll still hold that the more visible and widespread ANY application or OS is the more prone it is to be “hacked apart”.

        • #3235900

          Then explain Apache vs IIS

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Back Up One

          As Apache IS more dominant as a web server, yet it isn’t the one getting hit and hacked all the time.

          That just shows that the part of the argument of the only reason MS is more vulnerable is because they are more common. There are many other things that make them vulnerable.

        • #3235826

          Not The Point

          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to Then explain Apache vs IIS

          I’m not an expert on which one gets hit more often, so I can’t comment with much in the way of authority there. I would assume IIS, but I’m not around Apache enough to know what issues it faces. But it’s irrelvant for my point. That gets to the argument of which one is better – not at all the point of this discussion (or at least MY point in this discussion).

          The point was only in response to geekchic’s question about whether it would be more likely to be hacked if it were more mainstream. I still hold to “yes” on that. It wasn’t an issue of which one is better, but rather if it’s more visible, if it’s more used would it be hacked more. Yes. Would *nix flaws be as serious as Windows flaws? Don’t know, don’t care (for the purposes of this discussion, anyway – when all is said and done it DOES make a difference, but we’re in academic world right now). Would there be as many flaws in Firefox as there are in IE given the same span of life? Don’t know, don’t care (see paranthetical comment above). Will Apache host my site more securely than IIS? Don’t know, don’t care (still caveated per above).

          Does *nix have more flaws in it than it had when it was first created? No – some have been patched. But have more flaws been found as it becomes more mainstream? Yes – because now it’s a bigger target than it was.

          JD – I don’t disagree at all with your take on this one. I think you hit it right on the money. I’m a primarily-MS guy, even, so believe it or not even us folks on “the dark side” can think logically about things. 🙂 There is no “MS” pride here – it just happens to be the best tool for many things I involve myself in (see an earlier comment on the definition of “best”). My only point is that I don’t think we’re addressing the same question on this subthread.

        • #3235810

          I agree that we agree

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Not The Point

          but STILL have one point more.

          “Does *nix have more flaws in it than it had when it was first created? No – some have been patched. But have more flaws been found as it becomes more mainstream? Yes – because now it’s a bigger target than it was.”

          New flaw get there because new features are added. Just like in all software.

          And the Apache point was just goes to show that claim that the ONLY reason Windows is exploited more is because of the bigger footprint on the new. Apache has the bigger footprint and is still exploited less than IIS.

          Glad to see reasonable people out there!

        • #3180958

          Right on JD!

          by berto ·

          In reply to Then explain Apache vs IIS

          I think that they are also more vunerable(in part) because they are an “easier target”. Now I’m mentioning this because my sister is a MS User to the bone, and I had a situation with her once in a chat room.(I know I see the tilted heads and dog ears, who has time for chat?lol) I can’t tell you how many times for example I have visited a “Chat room” for instance only to hear people with wanna be cool names talking smack to people(My sister,for one). Which is why I got involved in this particular situationin the first place) on windows machines thinking they’re untouchable because someone wrote a little protection app. in VB.(Three words for them… One Less Hit.)
          While in linux/ I was once offered a challenge to take someone(a smack talker) out of a room. The task handled in about 2 min/45 seconds.
          (Hmmmm, rubs chin and wonders if the poor guy ever saw a blue screen before he met me)
          the point is that it has been said before, but I’ll say it again. The reason windows is exploited is because it can be. QUICKLY!(You wont see anyone on a windows machine hopping onto a voice server(apache by the way) and grabbin ip’s. It’l kick ya before you get in.
          Now my computer experience started in 1982 on an IBM 4 phaze while doing data entry for the dept. of agriculture. I have seen a lot over the years. Quite simply, Open Source Works because the community never sleeps, young and old, there are always people providing soultions for the people interested in finding them.(Ahem,Homeland security hasn’t told users to stop using Firefox)What are the Big Dogs running? Ping a homeland server and see what comes back.(It’s not MS)I think that people should wake up a little when they think about security. I have for instance a 14 year old nephew that eats servers for lunch. Kids these days are “wicked smart” and breathe this stuff as we breathe air. They are “target marketed” into thinking that “Norton” can save them from anything when in reality it’s the biggest resource hog of them all.(Lets bog down the machine we are working on so it will be more efficient,)lol.
          People are afraid of change. Mostly because they relate it to pain, money<--a big one, fear, loss, whatever. Believe it or not there are still offices using windows 98. Where's the support or compatibility in that? People(Front end users) don't change because they are lazy, or too comfortable in what they are doing. Hence the fear factor.It might mean that they will actually have to work a little harder. A CEO would much rather have a new car or vacation home, than have to go through the headache of having to train his staff for the upgrade. The companies that see the light (when the time comes)will already be set. It will be the ones that didn't change to the more secure O.S that will suffer the losses.

        • #3235740

          meaning of a statement

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Back Up One

          geekchic asked if Linux, with greater popularity on the desktop, would be having the same problems as Microsoft is now having. That’s not just a question about whether it would be more attacked than it is now: it’s a question about whether obscurity is the real reason for its security. The “security through obscurity” concept just doesn’t work, and that also means that security through obscurity isn’t the reason for Linux having greater current security than Windows.

          Linux has passed a minimum threshold of popularity: it is in regular enough use so that it will attract security crackers. Whether or not they succeed in developing effective exploits is another matter entirely. Because Linux is capturing such a significant portion of the low-end server market, running mission-critical applications and protecting sensitive data, it is already a juicy target for many malicious security crackers. In fact, because it has the less glamorous but more financially significant role of a server as its primary operational niche, it should be attracting more “professional” security crackers, more people who are in it for the money instead of for IRC bragging rights.

          This means that the people most likely to actually discover a vulnerability and develop a malicious exploit are already paying attention to Linux, whereas people who try to compromise desktop systems for “fun” are the sort who make use of cracks developed by better minds than theirs. Desktop system crackers are the cast-offs of those who invade servers in search of something that might profit them.

          Thus, all that Microsoft’s desktop dominance really does is get it in the news more. The server side is where the vulnerabilities are found and exploited in the first place. If Linux isn’t already being hammered with vulnerabilities as much as Windows, it never will be, if popularity is your only measure. Keep in mind as well that there’s forty years of unix behind modern Linux systems, and general principles of security cracking for unix in general still hold true because Linux is a modern-day unix. One of those principles is “If there’s a Windows system around, go for that instead: it’s an easier target.”

          I responded to you as though you were trying to compare technical security characteristics of Linux and Windows because you were responding to geekchic, who was clearly referring to the likelihood that Linux would get as many exploits and as much damage to its security as Windows if it were as popular as Windows now is. If you were taking the discussion in a different direction, though, I’m afraid I missed that part.

        • #3235730


          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to meaning of a statement

          I did end up taking a slightly different direction – I took it to “generally accepted” open source (basically Firefox in my example) vs. just Linux / Windows.

          “What if the bulk of homes and businesses used Linux…do you think that then it would also be more vulerable to being hacked apart?” –geekchic

          I had read geekchic’s statement above as being a question of whether it “would also be more vulnerable to being hacked apart” as a comparison of where it is now vs. where it would be if the whole world used it. Re-reading it I can see that another interpretation (which is the route I believe you went down) could be a comparison between where Windows is now and where Linux would be. I didn’t get the impression that was where she was headed, but I can see where I could have misread the intent of the original post.

          If the intent was the latter (head-to-head) I can’t speak to the security of one vs. another with much authority, but I’d wager my money on Linux being the more secure of the two in a head-to-head “same time in market” situation. I don’t think there are many people who would put money on MS coming out ahead. I’m not even sure you could get Ballmer to buy that one. 🙂

          I don’t disagree that most of the people who are up to no good are already paying attention to Linux. That’s actually my point. Before Linux became a common platform for secure web hosting were these same people cracking it at the same rate? I doubt it – what would they get out of it? “Hey, Gary, I just cracked a Linux box! I affected fourteen users!!!”

          Nobody hacks Windows 3.1 anymore because the user base is so minimal (but yes, there are still people who use it – I’ve seen it with my own two eyes. I didn’t believe it until I saw it). If suddendly OSs went retro and 3.1 became the OS of choice* you can almost guarantee that someone would find a new way to hack it because now all of a sudden it’s big stuff and there’s (perceived) value in it.

          * Side note: Can you imagine that world? I mean, there is a REASON parachute pants went out of style – please don’t bring them back. But apparently anything is fair game (because they’re back), so why not bring back the old OSs? 🙂

          BTW: No offense intended to any parachute pant-wearing TR-ers. But really, there IS a reason they left…

        • #3235721


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          Linux has actually been around since before Windows 3.1 was invented. The press mostly hasn’t noticed because it wasn’t doing the “user friendly” thing at all until about five years ago. It has, however, been the platform of choice for programmers in certain industries since the early ’90s and, for instance, most of the ballistic missile defense industry runs on Linux.

          This is not a new thing. This has, in fact, been going on for years. Linux has been gaining significant server market share for years as well. People act as though Microsoft invented the Internet, but the truth is that most of the Internet has been running on various unices since the early ’80s at least (I know much of the Internet ran on unices before that, but I don’t know if “most” is a fair term). In fact, Microsoft didn’t even have Internet-capable OSes until the ’90s.

          Apache on unix is pretty much the uncontested king of the Internet, and in fact in webserver admin circles the term “apache” is generally used synonymously with “webserver”, just as “squid” is often used synonymously with “proxy server”. Windows, IIS, and MS Proxy Server are Johnny-come-latelies that still haven’t provided a credible threat to the majority hold on Internet services enjoyed by open source software.

          . . . and most of it is running on Linux. Solaris and *BSD, in no particular order, are probably the runners-up for Apache and Squid server OSes.

          Linux is not a new phenomenon. Linux is not something that will get cracked and attacked more often as it matures as a commonly used server platform because it is [b]already[/b] a mature commonly used server platform. The people who try to crack security on servers already know this. The only area in which Linux is a recent entry to the mix is mainstream end-user desktops. If Linux was going to be proven as vulnerable as Windows to the common cracker, it would have already happened. The only real threat to it now is pressure from within to include stupid, unnecessary features that might actual degrade its value and, for the really paranoid, the possibility of sabotage by proprietary software vendors that might like to see Linux fail to take much market share.

        • #3235715


          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          I think we’re saying the same thing. Linux, in it’s current form, has been around for a while (I didn’t realize the early 90s; I thought it was later than that), and I’m with you on Unix being what effectively runs yonder ‘Net.

          However, Unix (and until the last few years Linux) has never been intended as the “Joe Average” desktop OS (primarily because most average users would probably freak out if they didn’t have a GUI). When it becomes more “mainstream” as a desktop OS I think you will see people adding all the “stupid features” and, ultimately, causing problems (because those tend to open up security holes). Just a thought.

        • #3235645

          Do you remember DOS

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          There was no GUI with that and people seemed to use it quite a lot.

          Granted I did get a few calls back in those early days that their new computer that had been ordered without any software wouldn’t work properly and they only got a strange meaningless C:\ prompt when they started the thing. But this was nothing to do with DOS but more a Hollywood thing where people expected just to plug it in switch it on and have a nice AI to do all the work for them.

          Back in those days the PC was considered as Magic and a lot of uneducated people though that they could do everything including think. But even before the end of the DOS era this had been forgotten and people just worked with DOS without a single problem they considered the Command Line king and understood it fairly well.

          But with the advent of Windows 95 the dumbing down began and people no longer know how to use computers properly after all they have a pretty picture imported to the desktop of whatever takes their personal fancy and they only have to click on an Icon to get a program open most of which are imported to the desktop to prevent the need to open the Start Menu which scares a lot of new users.

          While some people may be able to drive individual applications very well by no means infers that they know how to use a computer just the application that they use and even then most would be lost without the pointing device as “Keyboard Shortcuts” are today an unknown thing by most end users. The number of times that I’ve had to go to a person because their mouse broke and they couldn’t continue and couldn’t shut down because they would loose all of that input is amazing particularly when I just walk in push a few keys save their currently open data and anything else that they have open and then reboot so that the new mouse that they have fitted works.

          But they believe they know how to use a computer so who cares?

          Col ]:)

        • #3254885

          The cool movies are all done on linux now too

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          all the high end CG that you see is done on linux for a few reasons. To save buko bucks on licensing AND because it runs faster and is more stable than it’s windows counter part. Go and look at all the cool things Pixar has done with it.

          High end CAD stations have been Unix for a long time.

          Login to your netgear router to update the flash and it is linux.

          Many of the security boxes out there. MultiTech routefinders are linux boxes, that you run from a browser (or you can console in).

          A year back when MS was getting DOS attacks against it’s update server, it had a proxie hosted to block this out. That company used linux servers, to protect MicroSoft. How funny is that.

          It is out there, more than you know.

          (Sad to say I remember the first coming of the parachute pants. You can still buy them for about $5 at Normans too!)

        • #3254875

          Computer users today

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          I (as one of about ten hats I wear) am in charge of all in-house training of our computer users.

          Before that I taught Applications at the local college as well as a local training shop.

          I have about 10 years of experience teaching zero level users how to use their computer so I have been there and seen that.

          Most “users” don’t know anything about the operations of the computer because they just don’t care how it works or are afraid of it because it is more than they can comprehend. The fear imobolizes many before they can even start.

          Most people could not rebuild a motor, but they can drive a car. That is the same aproach they take.

          Because of this attitude, they do not learn time saving shortcuts. They do not practice file management AT ALL. How many users do you know with 500 plus word files in a single directory?

          If the file isn’t in the default location, most would never be able to even find it.

          When I teach my classes, it doesn’t matter if it is a word proccessor, spreadsheet, presentation, or whatever, the first half hour is nothing but file management and maintance. They would never take a file management and maintance class on it’s own so this is how I trick them into learning something about the system.

          I laugh when I see someone who does data entry into a spread sheet that someone else designed years before, and claim they “know” excel/lotus 123/quatro pro. No, if you can’t setup and maintain that file, your nothing but data entry. I just got done with Fiscal year updates on a group of sheets for our accounting department. Every year, same old thing. grrrr. But they admit they don’t know it, and that they have no desire to learn it because that isn’t their job. (and it isn’t, of course technically doing everyone elses spreadsheets isn’t mine either…)

        • #3181450

          Just out of curiosity

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          Do you have to place shortcuts on the desktop to not only the programs but the files as well in a lot of the business?

          It is something that drives me nuts I have all these data entry people who insist that they are expert computer users and they can’t even find the app start icon in the start menu. Maybe I started the rot with one user who I was constantly being called to just to open the app and then the file that she worked with so I placed a shortcut on the desktop to the file which opened the program up whenever she clicked on it. Within a week I was doing this to every computer in the place and then they decided that they wanted the app shortcuts as well because they just might want to open that app with out that file as if it is a hard thing to do to open the file and close it down to keep the app running.

          Don’t get me wrong they are very good at what they do but they sure as hell are not expert computer users or even expert in a single app just are able to fill in fields in a pre designed format that they use. Just recently AU Post changed the rules for all their bulk mail and I had to go around to every workstation that entered data for this to change the fields and the label layout it drove me nuts as I constantly had these self proclaimed “Experts” looking over my shoulder asking what it was I was doing now? What made it even worse is it was a app that I do not personally use so I had to fudge my way through it to find the best solution it certainly isn’t my job to do but there is no one else capable of doing it either even with all these experts around that use this program.

          What gets to me is that working IT you are expected to immediately know every application and even what the differences are going to be on the new ones coming before you even see them. Because I do consulting work for several small business when I first go there I tell them all that I will not touch their accounting packages or any of their data as I don’t want to know a single thing about what they are doing and the like and on almost every occasion that I’m called in for a software problem it is to do with their accounting packages or to alter a field in their spread sheets for their products or customer data base.

          Or even better I made the mistake of showing someone how to do a mail merge which they had no idea could be done as the place that taught them didn’t do “Advanced” stuff like that. To me it was a basic function of the Word Processor and back in the DOS days if you couldn’t perform a simple mail merge you didn’t know your job. This wasn’t even a hard one just the name and address on a form letter. Back when Word Perfect was the must use word processor I used to see some very complicated mail merges done but today the users seem to have been dumbed down so much that instead of using 10% of the programs abilities I would guess that they are now using less than 2% of the abilities of an individual program in a lot of cases. I accept that the training is no longer available that we used to have but even still I would expect quite a lot of what the older people learn to have filtered down into the current work place.

          Col ]:)

        • #3181741

          I REFUSE to link files on the desktop

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Interpretation

          I will show them how to use Windows Exploiter to select a file to launch that way, but mostly they open the application (from an icon in the launch pad along the bottom) and then click on the pretty picture of a “file” with the arrow coming out and there are the millions and millions of fans of the Rock,… I mean all their files.

          Some will let me create subdirectories (remember that word?) to help them keep the files organized, and others just let them fall where they may.

          Yes I remember Wordperfect. I started teaching Lotus 1-2-3 ver 2.4 (yes, that was DOS). Didn’t do much with Wordperfect until after Windows came around, but I started for personal uses with ver 5.

          I still laugh when MS Word went from ver 2 to ver 6 because people were buying WordPerfect because it had a higher version number.

          OOOOH! Remember when Apps had VERSION numbers instead of a YEAR?

          And yes, I just got done updating a bunch of files for fiscal year end. The user could insert the area for the new year, but it didn’t automaticly repopulate the graphs. So I would have to just select the range over again and it would apply the change. Simple changes that took a week because there were so many cussed little changes.

          Glad that week is done!

      • #3239028

        Completely Correct!

        by hal 9000 ·

        In reply to Just wondering….

        If Unix/Linux as the mainstay of the market it would be getting hit a lot harder than it currently is but it is also harder to hit so those “Script Kiddies” would either have to know much more or there would be fewer of them.

        But once you remember that nothing at all is secure and you accept that everything has its weaknesses you can then go about living with the lesser of two evils and making the necessary safe guards to put in place to minimize any intrusions and the like.

        The very first case of what we now know as “Hacking” happened at the Melbourne University in AU where a few people gained access to the Unix Mainframe and then had free rein about the world to do as they liked that was way back in the early 1970’s where most people didn’t have computers and those that did had paid an arm and a leg for them and even better there where no Laws in place to make it a Criminal Activity.

        Since then we have become much more security conscious and the makers of the OS’s are accepting their responsibility to minimize intrusions. The fact that it is easier to do on Unix/Linux platform is neither here nor there every OS has weaknesses that can and will be exploited but on the up side on a Unix/Linus OS unless you have just been installing something the OS reverts back to a restricted account and asks you for the Admin Password before allowing anything to install. Now if you’ve just opened an attachment in an E-Mail that isn’t what you expected it can not install itself without you helping it by opening the Admin Account which is something that most people would not do.

        The current versions of Unix and Linux are far more secure than Windows is and are a lot harder to crack but not impossible. The question really is are you happy that something can install itself easily without your knowledge or would you prefer some way to prevent/minimize this from happening?

        The Fire fox implication is really a non issue as the problem there was a buffer overflow and was directly related to the platform that it was running on and not the program itself. M$ has for several years been attempting to stop the Buffer Overflows that cause the problem but because of the way that Windows works for every one that they stop several others are still available and while a bit harder to reach are still an easy target in comparison to Unix.

        There is nothing at all you can do to prevent every attack but you can certainly make it harder for those who want to play nasty.

        Col ]:)

      • #3254780


        by geekchic ·

        In reply to Just wondering….

        Ok, I am getting information over load here!! Man have I learned a LOT about Linux AND many other things…thanks for responding to my question so openly. I do appreciate it.

        I also wanted to comment on the statement in one of the repsonses about “users” having 500 word files in one directory. Around here, I am lucky if they manage to get them into one directory. I find them everywhere on their computers, on the C drive in the system files and on the desktop! And then they make copies of the copies of the copies and save them everywhere on the C drive in case they have a problem with their hard drive…they can get them back. DUH! If the hard drive is gone….EVERYTHING’S GONE! They have been trained, I have personally gone to their desks and showed what to do, written them instructions and when their hard drive dies, that data is lost. We back up My Docs, email and some other settings on a regular basis but if they don’t put anything where it is supposed to be…there is NOTHING to restore!

        Sorry that is my rant for the day!!

        • #3254732

          And what a rant it was!

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Whew!!!

          My users have them all in one directory because that is the default and don’t know how to change to a different directory.

          As for backing up data, I put an icon on the desktop that takes everything in the “My Documents” and copies it to their ZIP drive. All they need to do is double-click an icon. Do you think more than 1% of my users will do even that? Not on your life.

          Backup? We don’t need no stink’en backup!

          By the way, you had an excellent question that was worded very well. Too bad more people that don’t know about something wouldn’t just ask like you did instead of making statements based on things the had heard as if they are facts. Many could learn from you. (I always learn a lot in here too, just about everyday I get something new)

      • #3181490

        A little late, but…

        by jmgarvin ·

        In reply to Just wondering….

        I would say no to Linux being more vulnerable for a number of reasons. You need to keep in mind that *nix holds about 35% of the server market and about 3% of the desktop market. Apache hold about 65% of the web server market and IIS holds around 35%. With that being said, you need a little background in the way things work in Windows and Linux.

        Windows has a registry and “user space” that is simply folders that have various permissions on them. A user cannot modify the registry, you have to be a power user or admin. The problem with windows is that I don’t actually have to change the resistry, I can simply create a library (dll) or executable that is called. Part of the problem too is that Windows is very open to letting Trojans do what they want (for some of the reasons listed above, but there are other insecurities with the way the Executive and Kernel interact, but that is a pretty long discussion)

        Linux works on a pretty simple idea of permission control. User space is actually just that. A user has their own little homestead and they don’t have to worry about others invading on their territory (unlike Windows). There are specific directories that share out resources to non-root users. As a non-root user you cannot do much to the system other than affect your own user space. Linux also has kernel level security that helps prevent some of the issues that Windows has.

        Anyway, my point is that the way Windows is designed it is inheriently insecure. The way *nix is designed it is far more secure. I’d argue that while *nix would have security issues (it does right now) very few issues would be as critical as the plethora of MS issues that are patched on a regular basis.

        I’d also argue that open source is probably more secure (in general) because of peer review.

      • #3180844

        You go girl with some common sense…

        by rick.smith ·

        In reply to Just wondering….

        Of course they go after biggest impact. Consider also that the ones that cry the most about security don’t take the necessary steps to keep their networks clean. Administrators are supposed to administrate. Think Linux works out of the box or that it is free? Think again. MS is far and away the best value, if it were not we would all be crying about Novell issues.

        • #3179634

          You must work with low end units

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to You go girl with some common sense…

          To say that “Ms is far and away the best value”

          Well I’ve worked with banks and Government departments and I didn’t see a single Windows Server in the place for two main reasons the first is that they are inherently insecure and two they suck up way too much of the system resources just to run the OS before you even start to load a high intensity usage to the server.

          With the reintroduction of “Thin Clients” Windows is just pure and simple unsuitable for these as you have lost 30% of the system resources before you even start that is the amount used by Windows itself with the minimum site licenses installed it only gets worse the more licenses you install. The idea was to get away from using floors of buildings as server rooms but with a Windows Server room that is what you need but with a Nix server room you require far less hardware. So just where is the saving in costs?

          Col ]:)

    • #3254716

      I’ve heard the rumor I am a left wing swillish zealot…where do I join?

      by jck ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I’m reporting for duty…bash me, please

      • #3181614

        Oh NO!

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to I’ve heard the rumor I am a left wing swillish zealot…where do I join?

        Don’t tell me your not only lefty swill, but a M$ zombie too?

        Woe oh woe. When will it all end?

        Is there an open source solitare I can go play to drown my sorrows?

        (Bout time you showed up! Now add something to the conversation or I will hijack all your guiness)

        • #3181563

          you’d have as much chance to get my Guinness from me

          by jck ·

          In reply to Oh NO!

          as Vern Troyer would have of blocking a shot from Shaq.

          I’d give up my computer before I’d give up my Guinness.

          I’m not a Microsloth *zombie*, although I’m feeling like it beat the hell out of me.

          The DataGrid, if anything, will be the downfall of VS .NET for Microsoft if they don’t re-vamp it quickly. It’s great for linking a table to it from a database, but to put formatted data into takes an act of God.

          BTW, there are lots of games in Linux, man…I thought you were a Linux man?

          Damn…20 minutes then I can go home and mow.

        • #3181546

          Feable attempt at humo(u)r

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to you’d have as much chance to get my Guinness from me

          Hey, they can’t all be gems can they?

          About 5 minutes and it is off to the golf course where there is no MS vs anything. Just me, my clubs, and a bottle a jager! Woo woo!

        • #3181538


          by jck ·

          In reply to Feable attempt at humo(u)r

          I’m glad I don’t play golf with you.

          You should be too. Jaeger makes me violent for some reason, unless I drink it with Brass Monkey.

          Weird. I know. Guinness makes me happy. I’ll stick to that.

        • #3181488

          Good point though…Linux Games

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Feable attempt at humo(u)r

          So anyway, I says to LouLou, I says, “Boy I wish more games ran and Linux and…” 😉

          Actually there are some games that run really well either natively (NWN) or with Wine (WoW) in Linux. I highly suggest trying your Linux box for gaming. NWN is a treat and WoW runs like a dream (although I was having an odd problem with dropping frame rates…I think it was the NVidia driver.)

        • #3181740

          Oh I want to soo badly

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Good point though…Linux Games

          but just don’t have the time at work or at home right now. Got myself a huge backlog of project at work and with my divorce going on I am completely gutting out my house to eliminate all traces of the EX. Five rooms cleaned, painted and redecorated in the last month and three more to go. Also changed out the carpet in two of the rooms, shampooed the rest.

          The next room is my new computer room, so I will have an area to set up many of my computers. Got three on the LAN and another four to load with various OS’s.


        • #3181731


          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Oh I want to soo badly

          I know it can be tough, but it sounds like you are in a happier frame now. Just tell me when you are done and I’ll bring my bitchen rig over for a LAN party 😉

        • #3181634

          LAN party?

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Oh I want to soo badly

          From New Mexico to Michigan? That’s a heckuva drive for a LAN party.

        • #3181188


          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Oh I want to soo badly

          Uh…ya…With REALLLY LONG Cat5 😉

        • #3181315


          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to Good point though…Linux Games

          It works fine on a Linux box? I’ll have to give that a shot. Are the req specs the same (as best you can tell), or do you think I could boot it up on my white box 1.2 with Red Hat running (vs. my 2.4 with XP)? I have 768M RAM and a 64MB nVidia in both…

        • #3181186

          You still need to meet the min spec

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to WoW?

          I’d also upgrade to Fedora Core 3 and the 2.6.11 kernel. Make sure to do the following:
          1) go to and get the Nvidia driver(s)
          2) Check out:


          They are both for gentoo, but with a little tweeking the instructions work in any distro.

          You should be good to go…

    • #3181385

      *nix’s on point

      by jack-m ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      Microsoft has been beta testing it’s software since the 1st version of Windows was released. When a new version of an MS product is released you can count on them releasing, patches, fixes and workarounds within months if not weeks based on customer complaints. Why have they been able to get away with this for so long? The *nix’s, while not necessarily superior certainly don’t engage in this type of marketing. The original MS GUI, with it’s point and click operation grabbed so much attention and popularity so quickly because an employer or any user could grasp it and become productive immediately thus eliminating the training needed prior to the GUI’s introduction. It was a cheap way for any company to have ‘trained’ computer operators quickly. We got lazy.

    • #3181384

      jdclyde’s *nix’s on point

      by jack-m ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      Microsoft has been having consumers beta testing it’s software since the 1st version of Windows was released. When a new version of an MS product is released you can count on them releasing, patches, fixes and workarounds within months if not weeks based on customer complaints. Why have they been able to get away with this for so long? The *nix’s, while not necessarily superior certainly don’t engage in this type of marketing. The original MS GUI, with it’s point and click operation grabbed so much attention and popularity so quickly because an employer or any user could grasp it and become productive immediately thus eliminating the training needed prior to the GUI’s introduction. It was a cheap way for any company to have ‘trained’ computer operators quickly. We got lazy.

      • #3181336

        The original idea was good

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to jdclyde’s *nix’s on point

        To make an easy interface for users to get in and out of their applications easily. That is why most DOS and UNIX systems had a menu system setup to help with exactly that.

        But then we traded ease for knowledge. The level of computer knowledge of the average computer “user” is so much lower than what it was ten or twenty years ago. And with MS and AOL hiding lots of the controls, I don’t feel this is an accident. The less you know, the less you expect because you don’t know better.

        Why should I need 256 MB Ram (or more) to run a word processor? Why would an office package take more than a gig of disk space? I am writting a cussed memo, not navigating a space shuttle!

        Even with computers being easier to learn because you don’t have to remember long strings of commands that you could forget or mistype, the masses are still too busy to learn to be more efficent. Don’t have the time to save time.

        The users are as much the problem as the way MS rushes to market because they accept paying major bucks for a product that is a work in progress.

        • #3181318

          Knowledge for Ease

          by firstpeter ·

          In reply to The original idea was good

          I don’t necessarily think it’s a bad thing (inherently) to trade knowledge for ease. If that trade-off had never occurred you can rest assured that computers would not be as prevalent as they are today, and business would not be able to run near where it can today. I know a number of people that are casual users (no GUI = no go) that are able to turn around work in a fraction of the time they would have otherwise spent on it precisely because they can point and click their way around.

          I can’t argue on those other points – there is a lot of “short-term” thinking that goes on. I teach seminars on Office and I’ve had folks tell me after those that what they learned in my one-hour session was going to save them that much time within a week. That’s not a bad investment at all. But many folks are reluctant to spend that hour (call it two for travel and such) in the first place. That’s why training, at least to some degree, is always part of any new process/app I roll-out to my clients.

        • #3181291

          Didn’t say trade-off was all bad

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Knowledge for Ease

          was more of an observation than a complaint.

          If we recognise the short-comings of the end-user it is easier to provide them with the solution they NEED, not necessarily the solution they WANT.

          It does erk me to no end when a user comes to me with a solution they want that is all wrong instead of coming to me with a problem. No, I will not set it up so 20 people across our WAN can print to your printer. No, I will not purchase 20 copies of AutoCad because people need to VIEW your documents. But I will find a solution for each.

    • #3181353

      “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

      by gene.fellner ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      You say, “Most people could not rebuild a motor, but they can drive a car. That is the same aproach they take.”

      Boy, does that ever sum up the attitude of the IT Zealots toward the other 99.99 percent of the human race!

      Dude: This frelling computer is SUPPOSED to be an appliance, just like my car! I’m not SUPPOSED to have to have the time, aptitude, resources, and interest to learn to be a software mechanic, just to make this appliance do more or less what I want it do to most of the time. I expect appliances to perform as advertised. If my electric range performed as poorly as my computer system, I would take it back for a refund the same day!

      I expect to be able to find and use my own data without having to understand directory structures and know the name of the program that created it. I expect to be able to find what I want on the internet and use it interactively to do business without having my computer infested with little programs built by somebody else that can steal or destroy my data or my ability to use the computer.

      I expect to have a problem that requires expert help OCCASIONALLY, just like I have with my car. OCCASIONALLY means maybe a couple of times a year.
      The rest of the time, I expect to turn the key and drive off without having to waste one brain cell thinking about how the frelling thing WORKS!

      You IT professionals just don’t get it. The overwhelming majority of the human race is NOT INTERESTED in computer science. To them, the computer is simply a tool, like their car or their TV set.

      You had better start writing software that gives these people what they want. Computers keep getting cheaper. More and more of those other six billion people are starting to be able to afford them. They will NOT settle for the kind of software that is available today.

      It’s your choice whether or not you like this. You can call them names and make fun of them and insult their intelligence. But they WILL NOT use your zero-quality, user-hostile, built-by-programmers-for-programmers software!

      • #3181347

        A little less polemic, but YEAH . . .

        by tootz ·

        In reply to “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

        My first couple computers, I learned enough DOS and Unix to do what I needed — and far better than most others I knew. But this is all getting very frustrating.

        I would suggest IT professionals (bless ’em, they sure do help me out a lot) might consider us poor old souls who really do have a few (thousand) other things to do each day and simply *cannot* focus on our tools, if we expect to get our work done–work, I might add, that could make IT pros’ lives a little easier–if I can ever get to it (and if some virus doesn’t destroy it, again).

        How ’bout it, geek-kids? We love ya’ but dang, my trying to figure out what I should be doing, so I can get to working at my own job, is just drivin’ me nutz!

        Thanks . . .

        • #3180393

          sure thing

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to A little less polemic, but YEAH . . .

          I’ll get right on that, the moment publicly published specs for hardware interfaces and popular software becomes common enough to be able to start tying everything together. Until that time, you’ll have to deal with either the mess of problems that Windows provides or the assumption of competence in systems like Linux that are required to allow users to deal with unexpected problems with limited-compatibility hardware and software.

      • #3181334

        Even basic car owners need to know

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

        about pumping gas and when you need it.
        Getting the oil changed.
        Getting new tires, and knowing WHEN to get the tires.

        There is also a TEST you have to take to drive a car. No test for the computer though.

        I recognise that the users don’t care how it works, as long as it works. Problem is, too often it doesn’t.

        I see lots of techs that lose sight of why they have their job. To make it so other people can do their jobs. Nothing more, nothing less.

        As for this discussion, it is more aimed at getting people out of mindsets to try to find YOU the users the best tools that are the most reliable.

        Yes, we all like to pass around the “dumb user” joke lists (only because they are funny) but most of us are just trying to look out for you the best we can.

      • #3181329

        Opens Up A Point

        by firstpeter ·

        In reply to “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

        That opens up a good question. Is using a computer analagous to driving a car?

        My take on it is that it’s really not, but there’s no reason it couldn’t be. Right now personal computers are not designed for a single primary purpose. They’re designed to be multi-functional devices, capable of web browsing, playing games, balancing checkbooks, and typing e-mails (among other things).

        A car, on the other hand, is designed with the primary goal of getting you from one place to another in varying levels of comfort, economy, and style. Sure, it can be used to jumpstart dead lawn mower batteries or provide a good backstop for a kid’s wiffle ball game, but primarily it’s designed for getting around.

        Computers COULD be made that specific. In fact, it’s fairly easy to make them that specific by locking them down, especially in a *nix environment. Look at an Apache web server – if it’s built right the first time (i.e., before it’s shipped to the user) and configured correctly on site (i.e., when it’s installed) you can pretty much count on just needing to do some “regular” maintenance every so often on it to keep it up to spec.

        However, what will inevitably happen is that people will want to be able to do more. I don’t know anyone that wouldn’t want to do just web browsing and nothing else. So now you’re starting to introduce complexities of multiple programs that may/may not play well with each other. If the two applications are from the same company that made the OS then maybe they’ll play well together (no guarantees on that, even; I’ve seen that premise fall through a time or two). If they’re not you’ve just put Honda Prius parts in a Mazda RX-8. Maybe they work fine, maybe they don’t. They SHOULD, because they’re supposed to be built to the same specs, but…

        And even if that works, you’ll have to go to the computer-equivalent dealer or mechanic to get new programs added. Most users I know would not be happy having to wait a couple of days for me to come by and install a new browser add-in. They want the ability to do it themselves. So now they’re modding the machine with after-market parts that probably don’t meet standard specs and might even be harmful to the engine.

        I don’t disagree with your point that folks aren’t interested in being computer science majors (nor am I – I’m just here on Earth to help people with computers). I don’t disagree that people won’t settle for the kind of software available today – I’ve seen so many commercially-available software programs that fall so short on usability and security that it disturbs me that the companies that produce them are still in business.

        However, I DO disagree with you that “IT professionals just don’t get it”. These boards are proof enough that yes, there ARE some fanatics out there that spoil the broth (no clue if that really makes sense, unless we’re cooking the zealots…), but there are more than enough IT professionals here that understand the issue and do their best to deal with what they’re given.

        I’m willing to best most of the IT professionals you’ll find on this board are more in the situation of DEALING with these problems than they are MAKING the problems in the first place. And I’m willing to bet that they couldn’t agree more with the fact that people will not use zero-quality, user-hostile software (assuming, of course, that there is an alternative out there to use).

        • #3181306

          I would also like to add

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Opens Up A Point

          We can only work with what we are given to fix and what is available.

          It’s no good blaming the tech for not repairing your computer properly to the way you want to use it if the original software isn’t up to spec and does not do exactly what you want. Most of us here try to fix the things or find a work around to suit our customers but very few if any of us here actually are responsible for writing the programs and even fewer are responsible for writing the code that drives the things in the first place.

          While we can rip out a bit of faulty hardware and replace it fairly quickly we are unable to rip out a couple of thousand lines of code and rewrite it. We are not responsible for the way that these things work only trying to keep them working in a manner that the OS supports.

          Anything more than that we are unable to do and it would be better to address your complaints to the maker of the software and Operating System rather than take the easy option of always blaming the tech for the shortcomings of the software. That is like blaming the mechanic for fitting a genuine part that breaks and then when it breaks again it isn’t the mechanics fault but the makers fault and in the case of a car most of the makers take responsibility for these manufacturing faults but for some reason the software houses don’t and it is the techs who get the blame for something that is out of their control.

          Col ]:)

        • #3181271

          You don’t write your own OS?

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to I would also like to add

          I guess now that I think about it, I don’t either.

          It is always a matter of shoot the messenger.

          And often it is because the top dogs will not finance the needed updates, because they don’t understand the need for them.

          A new computer for Sally? But she already has a computer. (yeah, a PII 300 with a four gig drive, four megs video, and 64 megs ram)

          An upgrade of windows? Don’t we already have a copy of Windows 95?

          Accountants are the worst for this! I understand that if you spend the money, then you never really made it but at some point it costs more to stay with old technology than to update.

        • #3181221

          The way I get around that with business at least

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to You don’t write your own OS?

          Is to point out the disadvantages from a tax point of view that P11 300 MHZ is actually costing the company money as well as being unable to write off any of it’s value as depreciation at the end of the financial year so it is actually costing you money. Accounts love that as they seem to think that they are saving money by buying a new computer. 🙂

          Failing that there was one guy who backed an excavator over one to kill it. Then had the audacity to walk into the boss office and ask me to fix his computer because it wasn’t working anymore. When I got to his office the monitor keyboard & mouse where all there but no box, he told me it was outside as the “Steam Powered Heap of S##T” had finally driven him nuts so with it not working he had taken it outside so he couldn’t see it anymore. I walked around looking for the box and then he yelled from his office window over that way. If I didn’t almost trip over a bit of the broken front pannel I never would have seen the thing as it had a 40 ton excavator track sitting on top of it. It was a K6 2 300 AMD and for some strange reason I didn’t even attempt to fix it. 😀

          But I had to leave that place for the day as I was laughing way to hard for my own good. 😉

          Actually I have on occasions been know to write my own OS’s but that was a long time ago and my current customers seem unwilling to wait while I write them a custom one. :p

          Col ]:)

        • #3179329

          So it’s all my fault is it !!

          by tony hopkinson ·

          In reply to I would also like to add

          I can indeed rip out a thousand lines of code and rewrite it. But re-write it in what. Not talking about language pascal, C# etc here. But how to get data from the mouse or keyboard, put a picture of something on the screen. Those functions are provided by the os, in software design terms they are hardware. Indeed unless you write device drivers in windows programming there’s no such thing as hardware, it’s all aaccessed virtually though drivers, in windows at least.
          I can in theory not make any errors, or at least fix the ones I have made, but all the ones in the OS I have to live with just like everyone else.

        • #3180717

          Not just you Tony

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to So it’s all my fault is it !!

          All of us have to live with those errors and we are the ones who get the blame when something doesn’t work out the way that the end users want.

          It never fails to amaze me that the people want M$ Windows and then start complaining that it doesn’t work the way that they want so we should fix it. I’ve yet to hear one customer complain about the attitude that M$ has, it is all the IT guys fault!

          Col ]:)

        • #3179562

          … complain about the attitude that M$ has …

          by noorman ·

          In reply to Not just you Tony

          I agree totally; M$ has gotten away too long with a lot of crap and broken promises, but still the ‘TOP’ buys M$ products and IT-techs get the shit …

          SORRY, 1 mistype and the post was already gone, read the next 1 please …

        • #3179561

          … complain about the attitude that M$ has …

          by noorman ·

          In reply to Not just you Tony

          I agree totally; M$ has gotten away too long with a lot of crap and broken promises, but still the ‘TOP’ buys M$ products and IT-techs get the shit …

          They should have been in court, long time ago, for putting out such bad quality products.
          Going back to the car trade; they would have had to take all those software packets back for ‘crashing’ as much as they do and for being easy to infect and get lots of job-hours lost, etc….!

        • #3180861

          They aren’t bugs they are features!

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to So it’s all my fault is it !!


      • #3181311

        Well they had better find

        by hal 9000 ·

        In reply to “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

        Something much better than M$ products if that is what they want.

        But if Billy Boy has his way we’ll all be using dumb terminals and paying a rental on the software that we use and for storing our own data. Just think how bad it will be them!

        Whoops there was a critical hole in the M$ product and all the data has disappeared from the server that I was using what can I do now? You will not even have a HDD to take to the data recovery people to recover the data from. But it will make M$ even more money so they will not care.

        Col ]:)

      • #3179606

        “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

        by noorman ·

        In reply to “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

        that ‘s an incorrect comparison …
        Your car’s exterior can’t be accessed by the whole world like a ‘web’-connected (home) PC is.
        Even then, it gets broken into and possibly wrecked where it ‘s parked or during a joy-ride !

        You have to learn to drive a car, learn which switch does what, what that handle does, when to put in fuel, oil, water, air …
        I know, many a woman drives with semi-flat tyres, too little oil or water and come to a halt being without fuel (unexpectedly).
        So, to drive a car you have to be a semi-mechanic or you ‘re going to be by the roadside a lot of times (waiting for the repairman) …

        • #3172337

          And this is differnt how?

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to “Most people could not rebuild a motor…”

          A computer needs to have some TLC too.

          Install, keep current and run your Antivirus.
          ” ” Spyware detectors.
          Patch the Windows OS.
          Patch the MS Office applications.

          These are things that if not done will (unexpectedly) make you “come to a halt”.

          This goes for anyone using a PC, home and professional users alike. While in the office the end user can get away more with being obliviuos to the needs of their computer because there is someone else in the company that will wave a wand and fix everything (accept for the lost data).

        • #3170432

          anti spyware / av scam

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to And this is differnt how?

          Every one of the last 4 PC’s I was called on to disinfect, had paid AV and anti-spy running on them, and all had both virus and spyware.

          NAV itself, in full-on mode, is just a huge viral like parasite on the host PC. Show me an IT consultant, and I’ll show you a lemming idiot 9 times out of 10 with an error rate of +=6% 19 times of 20.

          Most don’t know how things really work, why things are the way they are, or have a clue what else to do about it when google and /. have run out of ideas.

          This message board is a great example. Could there possibly be a worse way to design message board software?

        • #3170273

          Comic Book Guy????

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to anti spyware / av scam

          “Could there possibly be a worse way to design message board software?”

          The dripping sarcasm is amazing! I also love the part about how AV and anti-spyware tools are pointless. Pure comedy gold!

          I still can’t decide if techrepublic is for real or a troll….

        • #3170242

          well . . .

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Comic Book Guy????

          I do have some similar concerns with regard to the major commercial AV solutions, which almost universally suck, and I’ve gotta wonder whose bright idea it was to develop server-side web apps in a language the runs on top of a VM. In that sense, this techrepublic@ guy is on the right track. He goes well beyond reasonability, though, and straight into the realm of “there’s such a thing as too much of a good thing”.

        • #3170241

          Too True

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to well . . .

          Techrepublic@ reminds me of Mr.Miami in a lot of ways.

          I do agree that most AV sucks and there are TONS of issues with the way thing are done now, but he goes so far over the deep end, it really makes you wonder.

          Of course I have yet to see him post something that is a reasonable solution, only problems.

        • #3169873


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to well . . .

          Maybe techrepublic@ is a sock-puppet account.

    • #3181274

      Windows Sucks? Mac Sucks, Linux Sucks? etc…

      by happyface ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I started life in the computer field hating Macintosh computers, the shop I worked at had an IBM franchise and we hated!!! all things Mac’s. Then I volunteered at a school that had only Mac’s, My Wife was a teacher there and she kept asking about computers (Mac’s) and so I had to sit down and learn how to run the thing! anyway to make a lone boring story shorter, I think that when you have a computer system, it’s important to look at what’s install, what people know and go from there! If it’s mac’s then just deal with it, the same thing with Windows system, Linux, etc… I am teaching my kids to work in a cross platform environment at home and not show any prejedice towards any systems they cross during there computer lifetime!

      • #3180385

        Macs . . .

        by apotheon ·

        In reply to Windows Sucks? Mac Sucks, Linux Sucks? etc…

        Until MacOS X, there just wasn’t anything about MacOS that had enough value to me to bother with its drawbacks. Since the advent of MacOS X, the dubious benefits of Windows are beginning to look highly redundant.

        It’s admirable that you’re trying to expose the kids to all the major computing platforms without bias, but you’re doing them a disservice as well if you don’t expose them to the benefits and detriments involved in each, and I have yet to run across such a run-down that puts Windows on anywhere near equal footing with Linux and MacOS X in terms of technical merits.

      • #3180997

        Happyface is right

        by natem1 ·

        In reply to Windows Sucks? Mac Sucks, Linux Sucks? etc…

        You’ve got to look at what you have and what everyone knows and is going to be able to use. Don’t take the pat answer of this one is more secure garbage. Any OS in this day and age can be made secure and stable by someone who has a clue about what they are doing. Don’t jump on the Microsoft hater bandwagon. Microsoft is in it to make a buck just like EVERYONE ELSE. Look at what you already own, consider the cost of retraining and ongoing support.

        • #3180893

          a little education

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Happyface is right

          I guess you’re not familiar with the term “open source software”. See, the way this works is a bunch of people that want a particular piece of software to exist and work well, and who have programming skill, work on this piece of software. They develop it, improve it, and ensure that the source code is publicly available so that others who want it to work well can also contribute time and effort to it.

          These are people that are “in it” to have a good piece of software. This is not about fleecing the end user, squeezing every last nickel possible out of customers in exchange for as little work as possible. This is about producing [b]really good[/b] software so that they can use it themselves, and getting others to help in the same endeavor. Everybody benefits because everybody has a vested interest in seeing the software improve, and because nobody has a conflict of interest that prompts them to create crap software.

          Frankly, I trust those motives a lot more than Microsoft’s corporate vision. Besides, in my extensive experience with both open source and Microsoft software platforms, it’s a fairly well established trend that Microsoft’s offerings leave something to be desired pretty much universally.

        • #3179750

          Greetings from Earth

          by tony hopkinson ·

          In reply to Happyface is right

          Most Open Source is Free, that means you don’t make a buck.

          Any OS can be made secure and stable by people who know what they are doing. I agree.
          Course, that means MS don’t know what they are doing because though getting a little better, it’s neither. Also it never will be without addressing it’s architectural problems, most of which are very useful on the marketing front, to those for whom security and stability doesn’t matter all that much

    • #3180665

      Doesn’t everyone already know this?

      by seth ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I don’t know anyone who applies Microsoft patches, regardless of their characterization by Microsoft, without waiting a few weeks to see what gets mucked up by the patch. There are a few exceptions, such as those poor souls using IIS, but, for others, what’s the rush? Even Microsoft will probably fix a serious problem one day. Really, it’s true. The tooth fairy told me.

    • #3180661

      The biggotry runs wild

      by techrepublic ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I use Window ME — yes that’s right — on most of my personal systems.

      You say that in a crowded room of IT types — if you have the guts. I have people that know nothing about computers at all, freak out on me, based on the prior freaking they got from their IT acquaintences.

      Dogma is dogmatic. Here is some reasons:

      * Far less use of hardware resources
      * Still runs all current normal Windows software
      * Uses two driver schemes
      * Uses USB 2.0 more or less correctly
      * Takes 5 minutes to turn off annoying out-of-box features
      * Has some of the better UI features of 2K or XP, like; thumbnails, “outlook bar” style File dialogue
      * Takes 20 minutes or so to install from scratch
      * If you know how, you can lock down networking in a few mouse clicks

      Basically, there is nothing wrong with it, especially after you turn off System Restore.

      Peace out <>1337’s

      • #3180608

        I have just seen to many systems just die

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to The biggotry runs wild

        and the only way to recover it is to reinstall ME. WHEN it works, it isn’t bad but it just always was too much of a card house for me. Too easy for it to fall over.

        But that is just me.

        All my personal systems are win2k. Still have issues, but nothing a good reboot four times a day won’t solve…..

        Oh, and you CAN NOT use a palm pilot and sync to your server with ME. (unless they went back and added the goods since the last time I fought that beast.)

        • #3181066


          by ziskey ·

          In reply to I have just seen to many systems just die

          I’d like to believe this is a real topic, but every post I read confirms the opposite. If you have to reboot your win2k system four times a day, do you really have your systems installed correctly? Just as the same would be true if I claimed similar issues on my SuSe system.

          I agree with the premise that computing solutions should be evaluated on a per-situation basis; linux, BSD, MS, *nix, DOS, whatever. However posting items claiming to be impartial when you’re obviously biased is a bit funny. When people use terms like M$ and Windoze, I think it’s pretty easy to see what side of the fence they’re on (even without the penguin emblem) You’re certainly entitled to your opinion, and I agree with parts of your argument, but to imply you’re not a zealot? Funny…

        • #3180808

          like to be funny

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Funny

          Installed correctly? I clicked on the “I agree” didn’t I???/

          As for the avitar, I haven’t gotten around to making my own yet and the ones TR has are so limiting, ya know? It has been changed several times, and was the red dice last.

          I have kept the M$ and Windoze to a minimum in here. It is all in good fun as I get it back everytime I turn around. You just take things way too seriously.

          And I have been fairer with MS than many here have been with *nix. So how does that paint them? My main beef with MS is they need the competition to get them to make a higher quality product than they have. When Win2k server came out, it was pitched as more stable than windows NT. Buy this because it is better than the last crap we fleeced you for.

          Biased? Maybe. Disappointed? Maybe. Zealot? I wouldn’t think I am blined to one side as I use both daily and will continue to use both daily.

      • #3180510


        by jmgarvin ·

        In reply to The biggotry runs wild

        HA…HAHAHA…HA…whew. So your claim is:
        1) ME is stable
        2) ME is secure
        3) ME is just as good, if not better than 2k and XP?

        Interesting troll, and rather than reply to either point, I’ll just say this: ME is a broken OS. You cannot claim it fully functions on any level. It has issues with both integration and stability that have never been resolved.

        • #3181088

          But when it works the uses love it

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

          Or so I’m told. My only experience with it was when it first came out I loaded it onto a new computer that I was selling and ran it for about 15 minutes while I had a play. Then wiped the HDD and loaded 98SE and threw the ME stuff into that black hole here that seems to gather everything that I do not want to ever see again.

          I know I have a copy here somewhere but I’m dammed if I can find it and really I don’t want to either. 😀

          Col ]:)

        • #3181058

          My EX’s ME install

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to But when it works the uses love it

          started out on my quad-boot system. I had loaded 98/me/2k/redhat on each partition in case someone called me with a problem. I could then boot to that OS so I could walk them through the problem.

          It was a shame when the ME was the ONLY partition to die. So I deleted the OS and mounted the partition for the win2k system. It is now the home of Diablo II.

        • #3180811

          Define “die”

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to My EX’s ME install

          And was this a case of you not knowing what you were doing?

        • #3179828

          Are you claiming ME is stable?

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Define “die”

          There are plenty of threads floating around the net to prove otherwise. The huge problem with ME is that it isn’t a completed OS. It is a Frankenstein, part 9x and part 2k.

        • #3179800

          Swiss Army ME

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to Are you claiming ME is stable?

          Well some people like extra options…I mean, isn’t that the pitch for ever increasing resourcing hogging millions of lines of new OS code? Take a modern PC, and stick a Win9X on it. ME in particular will utilize all that RAM and work your USB 2.0 devices properly. It is really fast. Really very fast.

          I use Linux too. I think this is the difference between me and your average IT bloke. If you free your mind, you can apply the right tool to the right job.

          I like to work backwards from the task at hand. Let’s take the Windows 2K verses XP debate. A high percentage prefer 2K. I like XP better. Why do most techs hate XP Home? Cause it doesn’t support old apps as well. Ok. Why then is it “cool” to be supportive of old apps (16 bit) when its 2K or XP Pro we are talking about, but out of the question when its ME we are talking about?

          Another angle. If a cracker owns Linux/Unix, there is more they can do…more devistation. If you own a Windows 95C box, what can you do? These arguments always seem to indicate a demand to have it both ways. The OS that is more “simple” is bad when you suggest a use in one case, yet the fave OS’s have all these extra administration features, that techs love, but also make an exploit more devistating.

          Would I run an Internet exposed host on a Windows PC period…not likely. But if the task at hand is to give a generic user a way to surf the net, run Office X, and do some e-mail, why give them OpenBSD? You can, but why would you?

          If the task at hand is to get all-in costs down for a client, then what is the better choice? And if your user base is all in one location, do you need all the remote control features of a Linux or 2K or XP Pro? Maybe you do if the user base is 5,000 users, maybe you don’t if it is a lot less than that.

          Its complicated for sure, doing the right thing in a given situation. But being dogmatic seems to add little value from my experience.

          Especially of consideration is the amount of the IT budget going to infrustructure, at the expense of say software development. I’m pretty proud of my record on this.

          I built a hard-drive based backup appliance using NT 4.0 and a Linux distro three years ago for two major reasons — unreliable tape, and quick restores for users. Now I see such appliances selling for tens of thousands. I wrote mine using primarily XCOPY running NT, and a BAT file. Total cost hardware and labour, maybe $2000 tops.

          For that client, 80% of our IT budget went to the development of their key app. The IT ran on 8 years worth of old equipment and software, and some old-fashioned know-how.

          Hacking is a lost art. Cracking is still misunderstood. Dogma is rampant. IT budgets and managers only “see” branded products and respond to propaganda any more.

          It is simple really. The quality of your network and all the devices on it, speak more to the quality of you people. This is not a popular thing any more. The suits at the door from Microsoft and HP aren’t going to tell the low-cost story. Just to pay for their flights and hotels, they have to suck you in to X% of expensive products. They aren’t really solving your problems in a lot of cases, you are solving their problems. That’s why the big vendors spend so much on advertising in places executives go. So when you or your boss shows up suggesting spending $500,000 on branded “sollutions” they are ready to support.

          I’ve lost almost all respect for both IT and executive management. I think this is fair, as they long ago lost repect for creativity, experience, and thinking outside the (glossy) box. You can probably pick this up from my attitude in these threads.

          I AM daring someone with a huge IT budget to hire me, and watch me return most of the budget at the end of the fiscal period. I’m an enimgma in IT, and its an easy sell to make me sound “dangerous” in the boardroom. But here is hoping someone out there isn’t a frightened clone, and rings me up. Someone who likes to watch $$$$$$.

          My next idea? Deploying a fleet of Mac Mini’s across a corporation, that interface to a corporate catch-all automation application strictly via e-mail. There will be Microsoft products in the rack, and there will be Linux in the rack, and there will be hacking going on, and it will be ultra-low-cost, and it will be very cool — and most importantly, it will give my client a competitive advantage.

          I’ve already had my “fun” playing with gear. I don’t need a fat budget based on dogma and propaganda to enjoy my job. I get off on doing business…weird I know, but to the right ear, should be music. Waiting…

        • #3179622

          So what is exactly wrong with that approach?

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Are you claiming ME is stable?

          It is exactly how I work every day but then again I consult for small business so I give them the best performance for their buck that is possible to achieve.

          I generally run a mix of products in the LAN environment and while a lot of desktops have Windows on them a lot don’t as well it all depends on what is required and what dedicated software is used. On every occasion I use Windows on the Office Managers unit and anyone entering data into the accounting package but the sales side of things quite often has Linux on it and it not only works faster but is far more stable and easy for the sales people to use, I do not expect these people to know how to use a computer but I do expect them to be able to download a camera images and e-mail them which they are more than capable of doing on a basic Linux Desktop.

          I generally run all Linux Servers around the place just to save money and give them better hardware for their money and I’m still coming in under what the License fee for MS Server is.

          From where I stand it is up to me to offer the best value for money for my customers and to that end I never buy brand name boxes or Notebooks but build all my own and keep the basic configuration across the business the same. It makes it easier for the business and the person who has to maintain it after all in an office environment you never need surround sound speakers the ability to watch DVD’s or play high end games you need the ability to work in a tightly integrated work environment where the computers are a means to an end not the end in themselves.

          Col ]:)

        • #3170159

          You still haven’t answered

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Are you claiming ME is stable?

          “Well some people like extra options…I mean, isn’t that the pitch for ever increasing resourcing hogging millions of lines of new OS code? Take a modern PC, and stick a Win9X on it. ME in particular will utilize all that RAM and work your USB 2.0 devices properly. It is really fast. Really very fast.”

          I can’t disagree with this. However, I still stand by my claim that ME is unstable. You haven’t refuted it and you stick by ME still. I prefer 98 over ME and would probably deploy 2k in a corporate environment when I need strict and centralized user control.

          “I use Linux too. I think this is the difference between me and your average IT bloke. If you free your mind, you can apply the right tool to the right job.”

          Here I disagree. Most IT folks are pretty flexible. The problem is that management is not. Most IT shops are a mix of Unix, Linux, Windows, and probably some Macs. However, management has been sold on “Uber Solution X.” Now USX will solve all your problems and make all your IT issues go away!

          I also fully agree with the right tool for the right job, I just don’t see ME as being it. The security features it offers are slim at best (much like 9x), but it is far more unstable than 98.

          “I like to work backwards from the task at hand. Let’s take the Windows 2K verses XP debate. A high percentage prefer 2K. I like XP better. Why do most techs hate XP Home? Cause it doesn’t support old apps as well. Ok. Why then is it “cool” to be supportive of old apps (16 bit) when its 2K or XP Pro we are talking about, but out of the question when its ME we are talking about?”

          ME is junk. 98 is far more stable and offers the same basic feature set. ME has a ton of issues that I just can’t get past. I’d prefer to let 9x and ME die, but they are good solutions in some instances. However, I would deploy 98 given the choice.

          “Another angle. If a cracker owns Linux/Unix, there is more they can do…more devistation. If you own a Windows 95C box, what can you do? These arguments always seem to indicate a demand to have it both ways. The OS that is more “simple” is bad when you suggest a use in one case, yet the fave OS’s have all these extra administration features, that techs love, but also make an exploit more devistating.”

          Wow…just wow…You are lumping a bunch of stuff together here and you are mixing apples and oranges. I can exploit a system the same if I get control of a 9x box or a unix box. Why? I deploy different tools on different systems. It is also WAY easier to get control of a 9x/ME system and once I’ve done that I can control far more of your network in short order. However, if they are properly hidden, it would make it hard at best to even know how to get to them.

          I’d also like to point out that getting root isn’t trivial. Getting a shell account my let me get some access, but I’m still limited by the permissions set on that user.

          “Would I run an Internet exposed host on a Windows PC period…not likely. But if the task at hand is to give a generic user a way to surf the net, run Office X, and do some e-mail, why give them OpenBSD? You can, but why would you?”

          Nope. I would probably stick them with a 2k box connected to a domain because I am a firm believer in domain logins rather than local logins. Of course this is partially dogmatic and partially due to security concerns.

          “If the task at hand is to get all-in costs down for a client, then what is the better choice? And if your user base is all in one location, do you need all the remote control features of a Linux or 2K or XP Pro? Maybe you do if the user base is 5,000 users, maybe you don’t if it is a lot less than that.”

          After a recent discussion I’d go with thin clients. Not only are the inexpensive, but they offer you a level of security and usability that you didn’t have before. I wasn’t sold on thin clients until recently, but I’ve really grown to like how they work. My only gripe is that storage is hard to get sometimes because management thinks on a small scale….

          “Its complicated for sure, doing the right thing in a given situation. But being dogmatic seems to add little value from my experience.”

          But deploying a broken OS is also of little value. Why are you so dogmatic about ME? Why not 9x?

          “Hacking is a lost art. Cracking is still misunderstood. Dogma is rampant. IT budgets and managers only “see” branded products and respond to propaganda any more.”

          Agreed. I’m a hacker rather than a programmer. I’m a red team guy, not a blue team kinda person. I see things from the “bad guy” perspective and I take advantage of security holes in my own system to see what the flaw could do (worst case).

          I’m trying to groom the next generation of IT gurus and I want them to leave my classes with the information to make honest decisions based on THEIR skill. I’m trying to turn them into hackers (in the real sense of the word). I want them to break things apart and analyze them! I want them to study things until they understand exactly how it works…the current crop of IT folks aren’t like that…They are marketed to…

          “It is simple really. The quality of your network and all the devices on it, speak more to the quality of you people. This is not a popular thing any more. The suits at the door from Microsoft and HP aren’t going to tell the low-cost story. Just to pay for their flights and hotels, they have to suck you in to X% of expensive products. They aren’t really solving your problems in a lot of cases, you are solving their problems. That’s why the big vendors spend so much on advertising in places executives go. So when you or your boss shows up suggesting spending $500,000 on branded “sollutions” they are ready to support.”

          I agree again. Many vendors just want to sell you the lastest and greatest rather than actually selling you a product that will fit with your budget and infrastructure.

          I’m a firm believer in customizing software and developing packages that fit MY needs rather than using some brand spaking new package that may or may not work.

          “I’ve lost almost all respect for both IT and executive management. I think this is fair, as they long ago lost repect for creativity, experience, and thinking outside the (glossy) box. You can probably pick this up from my attitude in these threads.”

          It seems you and I are on the same sheet of music. Our major disagreement is over ME (which is interesting when you think about the whole thread context).

          I think you need to leave where you work and find another place. That place seems to be sucking the life out of you. IT is a good place to be and most of us are in similar situations to you, but we at least have decent work environments.

          I’d also have to say the the next generation of IT folks isn’t going to come in with the same expectations that you have (had?) when you first started. You have to pass that spark on to them.

        • #3170043


          by oz_media ·

          In reply to Are you claiming ME is stable?

          I would prefer 98 or 2K over ME. Me is just too much hassel, I have had a few friends buy PC’s in teh 90’s with ME on them and I had an endless flodd of support calls until either upgrading them to 2K or 98, yes UPgrade.

          When 2K was released, it was intended for business use, ME was merely a stripped down version for packaging with low-end, retail PC’s.

          Nobody liked ME though and kept upgrading to 2K Pro, so THEN they release XP Home (better than ME but still stripped of most networking and admin tools.) SO they have succeeded in building 2 OS’s with specific purposes. XP Homem is useless for a company and XP Pro offers more than most home users want, and it’s RARELY seen in a retail box, and is mainly available in professional workstations, desktops etc.

          If you buy a new PC with XPHome in it, you know it isn’t designed for business use, well that and a crappy, carry-in warranty.

          SO MS has decided they make an OS for home use and another for business use.

          As for ME, well I despise XP for the most part, Pro isn’t too bad but I would still take either flavour of XP over ME, even though it is nowhere near as resourceful as ME but actually can do something without issues.

          ME was a kaibosh f an OS, it had no marketplace, sales bombed, it lowered the value of retail PC’s, it dragged MS’s already tarnished name through the mud even more and was probably one of thier biggest marketing mistakes.

          Xp was a remedy but should have come out before ME.

          People wanted 2K and that bugged MS, they wanted to end the life cycle and move people into something new, but it hasn’t worked.
          ME was not a product worthy of installation, it wasn’t accepted by the industry and you either downed to 98 or upped to 2K.

          The big IT swindle gone bad.

        • #3181063

          Now play nicely kids

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

          He did say on “personal systems”, so it isn’t the same as if he was running a business on this.

          My EX LOVED WinME (had to add the “win” because it sure wasn’t “me” she loved!).

          No matter what I did, I couldn’t get her to switch over to Win2k until the day she picked up a trojan that trashed the entire install. (yes, running the same AV and firewall as my win2k system).

          I got her data saved, but darn the ME would never boot again. For some reason I couldn’t “find” a windows ME disk anywhere….. (whistle whistle whistle)

          But this does go to PROVE that MS users are their regardless of how bad some of the products are and LOVE it.

        • #3180817


          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

          Like what? I can quote the Bible too. How many hours have you spent with it? Since your hardware vendor put out better drivers? Yer a broken tech. How am I trolling? I’m agreeing with the thesis: Zealotts blah blah blah. I use various OS/s, I was just looking for a sucker zealott to bite on the ME. Thanks.

        • #3179827

          Ah Ha?

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to HAHAAH?

          What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this thread is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

        • #3179799

          You have to say that

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to Ah Ha?

          ITT TEch? You or someone spent a lot of money to indoctrinate you. Good job clone. Don’t you have a $mil to go waste now?

          The last IT department I was in charge of, had a per PC operating and captial budget INCLUDING all development projects of <$500 per year. Most of it was salary. And we were definately over staffed, a good 30% of our time wasted in meetings with stake-holders in the software development process not wanting to take responsibility for anything. You thought what I said before was crazy -- like a fox if you ask me -- check this. My LAN optimization strategy was sitting for a few minutes at key times of the day watching my switches...the little blinky lights. Then based on my understanding of the various roles of people in the organisation, I would make adjustments to user groups I would divide up using $80 5 or 8 port switches based on usage patterns. I bet you any money when my users on old P90's running RAID 0 promise drive arrays presed the power swich in the morning, opened their e-mail, and loaded their bloated XLS files, they were ready to work before your Windows 2000 boxes even presented a login prompt. If you think all this is crazy, you should see what I can do with database apps across a WAN without a single SQL server anywhere. Hey your team is in the majority, you have a lot of peers. Still if its $ and user-satisfaction we are interested in (remember when that used to be the point of IT in business?) I'll take you on any day.

        • #3179789

          Windows 2000

          by black panther ·

          In reply to You have to say that

          I have used all from Dos 2.1 to XP Professional and have found Windows 2000 the slowest of the lot. I installed it – uninstalled it and went back to ME until XP came out 🙂

        • #3170033

          Samurai Love

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to Windows 2000

          I figured a guy that called himself that would have to be smart.


        • #3179564

          I teach there

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to You have to say that

          I didn’t go to ITT, I went to New Mexico Tech and I am working on a PhD in computer science from there. I generally focus on information security and hacking. Pulling out the ad homs are pretty lowbrow…

          1) Sounds like a typical IT department
          2) Makes sense, many people do this because they have to. Hell, I worked at a place with a bagillion (give or take a few) VLANs because of the wonky topologie(s?) that were put in place years ago. Before I got to it the whole network would be borked if someone unplugged a SINGLE cable from virtually any site. Typical IT stuff.
          3) Uh, I’m not married to Win2k. However, I’d choose 98 over ME any day. Why? Stability. ME has serious issues with stability and the support is still terrible. While 9x is unsupported by MS, there is still plenty of vendor support for at least 98, if not 95.
          4) You lost me on running a database over a WAN with no db server…Are you saying that the dbs were decentralized (possibly run on the clients) or that you just weren’t running SQL?
          5) I agree with you here. You have to have customer satification or you won’t have a job. ME has no place in that. I’d use 98 or 2k (possibly XP, but I have my gripes with it as well) over ME.

          The major issue here is that you claim ME is stable and far better than 9x or 2k/XP. I competely disagree. ME is a mess of an OS and will NEVER be anything more.

        • #3170037

          Phd you should understand research

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to I teach there

          I hated ME just like everyone else. This isn’t an “I love ME” thread, its a “anti zealot” thread that I tried to turn into an “anit Dogma” thread.

          1) In the case of ME, when it came out, hardware driver developers got confused, and put out some bad drivers — probably mostly MS’s fault. The drivers are better now, usaully because the vendors realized they can just use the 98-style technique.

          2) I didn’t know how to exercise the problem parts of ME at the time.

          3) I recently deployed ME across my personal LAN, first as a joke, 2nd as a research project. I was about a put XP on my personal unit a few days ago, when on a lark I intalled ME, which I am sitting in front of right now.

          Basically you get a couple of the nicer UI bits from 2k up, like thumbnail views of folders, outlook style icon bar on open/save dialgues, slick FTP integration, ZIP/Compression built in to Explorer. Basically it is Windows 98 with better USB support, and these UI improvements. Turn of System Restore. Remove boot-time utilities. You have a up-modern 98.

          What the “feck” is stability? You mean the ability to run all day and night without rebooting? All my computers do that. Otherwise I rebuild them. I can assure you, no particular OS has the drop on running stable on bad hardware…eventually the hardware will get you.

          98 was starting to get diffcult in terms of the security patches from MS…which are starting to break things. For example KB891711. On some 98 machines it makes a mess. No problems here on ME. I rebooted once due to a hung app — WinAmp, doubtful it was ME’s fault.

          Anyhow, I’m being polite in the extreme. I HAVE the transcript from the OpenBSD hackathon recently, and know about the APM bug in the kernel loop. And the fact that some of the brightest people in the world missed it for years.

          Computers are technical, not emotional. People are emotional. This whole thread is polishing the brass on the deck of the titanic. Very few people have the capicity or interest in getting to the guts of the truth about things. Or the balls to gamble billions like Apple did.

          The biggest innovation I’ve seen in a corporate IT department lately, is someone figuring out how they can work a bunch of overtime and retire 10 years early. You retire from a “job” not from a passion.

        • #3169993

          You are one angry guy

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to I teach there

          “I hated ME just like everyone else. This isn’t an “I love ME” thread, its a “anti zealot” thread that I tried to turn into an “anit Dogma” thread.”

          The “dogma” that surrounds ME happens to be pretty truthful. It is an unstable OS that is a Frankenstein of 9x and 2k. 9x is (was) far better at doing what ME only sorta did. Sure it has some cool built ins, but I’d rather have a stable platform.

          “1) In the case of ME, when it came out, hardware driver developers got confused, and put out some bad drivers — probably mostly MS’s fault. The drivers are better now, usaully because the vendors realized they can just use the 98-style technique.”

          I’m sure, but most of the problems STILL haven’t been resolved. You need to use the MS released NVidia driver or you will have stability issues out the yang. Get the 71.84 drivers and see what happens. Oh and if you are running VIA chipset you will have issues no matter what.

          “2) I didn’t know how to exercise the problem parts of ME at the time.”

          Nobody does 😉

          “3) I recently deployed ME across my personal LAN, first as a joke, 2nd as a research project. I was about a put XP on my personal unit a few days ago, when on a lark I intalled ME, which I am sitting in front of right now.”

          XP is a bugger too. If I had my druthers 98 and 2k would be built on and XP would die. While XP Pro is decent, I still can’t total accept it, esp with the whole service pack 2 fiasco.

          “Basically you get a couple of the nicer UI bits from 2k up, like thumbnail views of folders, outlook style icon bar on open/save dialgues, slick FTP integration, ZIP/Compression built in to Explorer. Basically it is Windows 98 with better USB support, and these UI improvements. Turn of System Restore. Remove boot-time utilities. You have a up-modern 98.”

          That just doesn’t do it for me. I really don’t want my system to BSOD or reboot on a regular basis because it doesn’t like a certain app or driver. Sure, 98 has similar problems, but not to the extent of ME.

          “What the “feck” is stability? You mean the ability to run all day and night without rebooting? All my computers do that. Otherwise I rebuild them. I can assure you, no particular OS has the drop on running stable on bad hardware…eventually the hardware will get you.”

          Yes and no. It also means an OS that doesn’t have memory issues (ala ME and XP) can run without crashing and will gracefully recovery from a critical error. ME can’t.

          “98 was starting to get diffcult in terms of the security patches from MS…which are starting to break things. For example KB891711. On some 98 machines it makes a mess. No problems here on ME. I rebooted once due to a hung app — WinAmp, doubtful it was ME’s fault.”

          Agreed…However, 98 and ME aren’t about security, IHMO….

          “Anyhow, I’m being polite in the extreme. I HAVE the transcript from the OpenBSD hackathon recently, and know about the APM bug in the kernel loop. And the fact that some of the brightest people in the world missed it for years.
          Computers are technical, not emotional. People are emotional. This whole thread is polishing the brass on the deck of the titanic. Very few people have the capicity or interest in getting to the guts of the truth about things. Or the balls to gamble billions like Apple did.
          The biggest innovation I’ve seen in a corporate IT department lately, is someone figuring out how they can work a bunch of overtime and retire 10 years early. You retire from a “job” not from a passion.”

          Wow…that was one angry vent. You seem to be very frustrated and angry at your IT department and your job. I’m telling you, get out before it gets worse! There are jobs out there, start looking now!

        • #3171997

          When ME came out

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to I teach there

          it wasn’t pushed as a new OS, but an upgrade for 98 as per the MS reps. That is why there was so little hype about it.

          Then if proved its self to be unstable, which is why systems went from having ME BACK to win98.

      • #3170197

        I use Window ME … Basically, there is nothing wrong with it

        by noorman ·

        In reply to The biggotry runs wild

        yes, there is; it still uses FAT32 !

        Give me NTFS any day (if it has to be Windoze)

    • #3180646

      It’s fun to bash Windows

      by cass ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I’ve read the posts in this discussion and I notice how much fun everyone is having bashing Windows and Windows users (I use Linux myself) but the fact is that the hostage ware situation makes most of them stick to windows – Their tax software runs on it, their corporate accounting software runs on it, ACT for the sales department runs on it, Macromedia’s Flash runs on it, games run on it, the restaurant point of sale software runs on it, etc. And do not waste your time telling me there are equal alternatives for all those things on Linux. There are Linux alternatives for some of them but they are in the beta stages and for some software there is not even a beta stage version. Then get someone to switch to Linux and try to help them learn it. They read man pages and manuals with poorly written instructions that disagree with the very next manual on the shelf and when you post a question (any question) on a Linux mailing list for help a distro war breaks out and no one answers the question because they are too busy screaming Gent00 r0ks!!! So if the question of what’s best includes documentation and that silly thing most people use their computers for – productivity – Windows is currently way ahead of its more technical and secure alternative.

      • #3180545

        But is that because it is better or

        by hal 9000 ·

        In reply to It’s fun to bash Windows

        Because M$ has done an excellent marketing job on convincing a lot of the software houses to only write code for Windows?

        If lets say MYOB for arguments sake produced a Unix application that looked and worked like the Windows version with documentation by MYOB wouldn’t it be as good as the Windows Version?

        Currently Microsoft is doing everything possible to prevent these software houses going Open Source or even Unix remember what happened at Corel?

        Actually I like M$ Windows desktops provided they are hidden well behind a Nix server and not directly connected to the Internet and while what you say is currently correct there is still the issue of security that Microsoft while claiming to take seriously as yet doesn’t seem to have come to grips with.

        Provided that the Microsoft stuff is well hidden from the Internet I think its great as it is what keeps paying my bills but if all of those programs where on the Unix base it would be so much easier to maintain them and I would never have a patch wreck the entire OS again.

        While no Nix is perfect that are by their very nature a lot more secure and harder for the “Script Kiddies” to crack which is a lot more than can be said for the Windows computers out there now.

        As for documentation have you seen a XP OEM book lately?

        But you need to find a better LUG to ask questions of as obviously you are on the wrong one if that is the response you are getting. It is almost as bad as ringing M$ and asking why is the OS crashing when I do this.

        Col ]:)

      • #3183928

        Here Here!!

        by too old for it ·

        In reply to It’s fun to bash Windows

        I think you have hit the Linux problem square on the head: Too much religion, much less grounding in reality.

        For instance, I could easily convert the coffee shop I do some work for to Linux, if only (a) there was a Linux program that had the look and feel of QuickBooks, (b) it would accept and convert data from the legacy QB installation, (c) accept the output from the $300 cash registers in place and put it in the right spot so the accounting program could find it.

        Simple enough, no? Done every day under MS Windows.

        But impossible to discuss even with professional Linux providers without hearing a diatribe about how bad Windows is, and enduring a longish discussion over whether Mandrake/Suse/RedHat/Gent00 r0cks/SCO/Slackware or BSD is the preferred platform for some other group of apps I didn’t really ask for.

        • #3185016

          Say what?

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Here Here!!

          I don’t know where you’re asking for advice on Linux, but it’s clearly the wrong place. When I’m asked about migration from Windows to Linux, I give a clear and detailed account of the positives and negatives of that, and research the specifics of application needs for the circumstances. Where necessary, I recommend sticking with Windows. Where necessary, I recommend a migration path to Linux.

          Frankly, the reason I come off sounding like any kind of Linux devotee is twofold:

          1. I use Linux, and I like it. Therefore, I give the impression of bias. I don’t like Windows for my purposes. It bothers me to use it. I realize that’s not something that afflicts others, though.

          2. When people start discussions comparing Windows and Linux online, the Windows camp always paraphrases Windows advertising copy, whether it be first-, second-, or third-hand. I’ve yet to run across Windows advertising copy that actually touches on any of the true positives of Windows to any notable degree, but I certainly see a lot of Windows advertising copy that fraudulently touts strengths it doesn’t have. I guess Microsoft figures the actual strengths of Windows will speak for themselves, and the marketing department can go back to lying.

        • #3184626

          Wrong place for Linux advice

          by too old for it ·

          In reply to Say what?

          Could be. Still don’t have the solution, tho.

          Some of the advantages of Windows could be the vast quantity of off-the-shelf apps that are available, and the fact fact that the Windows desktop at work pretty much looks like the one the user has at home. Ther eis a LOT to be said for this.

          That said, for a server to interface with the POS cash register and run the accounting package after integrating legacy data (my example) I would think Linux would be great. I’m beginning to think that my Linux “consultants” either don’t agree, or aren’t listening to me.

        • #3184576

          advice and Windows strengths

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to Wrong place for Linux advice

          1. I’d offer you some information on what you want to know about Quickbooks migration, but I’m afraid that’s not something I know off the top of my head, and your specific questions aren’t of particular interest to me. The third option would be for you to pay the consultancy for which I work $100 per hour for our research and advice on the matter, in which case I’d do the work for money, but I don’t foresee that happening. All I really know for sure is that an application called GNUcash is the most popular Linux financial software in the same class as Quicken (not precisely the same as Quickbooks, I’m aware), and it is capable of importing Quicken QIF files. GNUcash is the closest I’ve gotten to that end of things thus far.

          2. I absolutely agree that one of the primary strengths of Windows is in proprietary, off the shelf software. In most circumstances I’ve encountered, that class of software is not much of an advantage (if any advantage at all) over other software types (such as distribution packaged open source software), and is often even at a disadvantage in comparison, but that is to some degree a function of the circumstances I tend to encounter rather than something intrinsic to the software type. I’m pretty sure that the off-the-shelf stuff will eventually become essentially obsolete, but for now there’s still a need for it, and Windows does that better than any other personal computer operating system, because Windows is what (almost) all of the proprietary software vendors support. It’s in no way a function of the OS that this is the case, of course: it’s just a fact of the market.

          3. I’m not sure there’s really a distinct advantage to the Windows desktop’s similarity between work and home. Linux desktops can be made to resemble each other, and in fact if you use the same distribution at home as at work it might even be difficult for the average clueless end user to make the desktop look much different. On the other hand, if you’re talking about using Windows at work because people use Windows at home, you may have a point. There is some advantage to that: it’s like free training for office personnel.

          4. Linux would certainly be great for that, particularly if your cash registers are running embedded Linux (which many, many cash registers are, these days). It sounds like your Linux “consultants” are not very good at their jobs and, regardless of what OS they’re pushing, you might want to look into replacing them. Granted, I’m saying this from a great distance without seeing any of this in context, but that’s my immediate knee-jerk reaction.

    • #3180622

      No Objectivity

      by eschlangen ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      In spite of what you say, the only possible result of your post is a flame war. There is very little substance to the post and no discussion of the things that Windows does better than *nix. I’ve used both and, , actually prefer Windows. I do not approve of everything that MS does. And there are things that Linux (the only *nix I’m familiar with) does better than Windows. However, IF you were to take the same amount of time to learn Windows that you took to learn *nix, you would find that you can make it just as secure and just as problem free without having to worry about exactly which flavor (or combination of flavors!) you are running. I can’t remember the last time that one of my servers crashed. And the last time that we got a virus, it was brought in on a game disk by an employee that had been given “temporary” local admin rights by an administrator at a branch office. This is not something that *nix could have prevented. There are two sides to every story and I do not feel that you are presenting a non-biased presentation of facts. You could, at the least, have said up front that you prefer *nix!

      • #3180600

        All depends on the task

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to No Objectivity

        If it is a desktop I use windows.
        If it is a web, file, or ftp server it is linux.
        If it is our AV server it is windows.
        As far as prefering *nix, I only look as good as the tools I put in place. If I put in a server and can just forget about it for the most part then I have done my job.

        What is the uptime of your windows servers right now compared to your *nix servers? All of my *nux servers are 150+ days. The Windows server is two weeks.

        The main point was that some things windows does, somethings *nix does. It is not in the best interests of the end user to limit the tools that are applied based on what you “like” or don’t “like”.

        The second point was that people that are obsessed with MS products should expect more from the products they purchase. Quit making excuses for the vendors and demand that they be held accountable for the product they are pushing.

        As I said in a different post, I have another windows 2k server license I would be using right now, but my boss won’t let me.

    • #3180617

      Fanaticism or Complacency?

      by brianmpenn ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I have to beleive the vast majority of computer users are just ‘comfortable’ with Windows. Yes there are the died-in-the-wool fanatics on both sides, but by and large Windows dominates because it’s easy and available. Windows’ inferiority is directly proportional to it’s market base. Windows is not (for the most part) marketed to the IT professional (exceptions do apply). Where Linux doesn’t even have a market stragety, nor does it need one. The biggest thing to happen to linux is Novell. I’m waiting to see what the Provo company can do with an open-source business model. Your (and my) ability to see both sides of the fence comes from a healty understanding of how both systems operate. There are far too many IT pros that ONLY know Windows, and believe that if you want your business to work, you have to run Windows, because that is what everyone else uses.

      The Linux learning curve is far to steep for the average everyday computer user. The acceptablily of Linux is only gaining momentem as the populace becomes more educated about how computers, and OS’s operate. Additionally, a more educated user can make Windows and it’s environment more stable.

      +++Sarcasm alert!!+++

      So now that I think about it, the less educated the user, the more jobs for us. *WINDOWS RULES!!*

      +++Sarcasm indended+++

      • #3180598

        Uneducated users = Tech jobs

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to Fanaticism or Complacency?

        This is a point I have agreed with for a long time. The same is true of AOL users. The techs are quick to sneer at the dumb AOL users, because they are typically people with more money than brains. Think about it, who better to have as a customer?

      • #3180576

        Couldn’t have said it better

        by beverlyincincy ·

        In reply to Fanaticism or Complacency?

        I have noticed that a lot of the postings are getting heated and losing objectivity. you have stated the facts well. It will be interesting to see if Linux finally gets off the back burner now that it has some ‘big guns’ behind it. I think mid size businesses are getting tired of the licensing /support costs of Microsoft, and are now taking a closer look at Linux and other open source apps.

        • #3180566

          Better watch it

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Couldn’t have said it better

          If you recognise linux at all it seems others will accuse YOU of losing your objectivity as well.

          And people forget, there are GOVERNMENTS making the switch to linux, not just the geeks in moms basement. The old stereo-type doesn’t fit anymore.

      • #3180984

        Its not an appliance

        by rknrlkid ·

        In reply to Fanaticism or Complacency?

        I think this discussion is missing a different, but important, point. The public is being sold this illusion that computers are “appliances” that anyone can operate and repair. This distortion of reality is what causes alot of the confusion. Computers are not for by average people. Computer use and repair requires an advanced skill set.

        Computers are not appliances, and unlike toasters, require someone with training to set up and repair. Some things can be done by the user, but many of the tasks are outside of the average user’s knowledge and experience. Using the metaphor of a car, the driver can put in gas, add oil, or water, but disassembly of the engine usually takes a mechanic. A user can install software, do a virus scan, surf the internet, but it takes training to do many advanced tasks. Have many of you received business because a user deleted files they “didn’t think they needed” (like dll files) or removed the wrong thing from the registry?

        The computer is a tool. Thanks to movies and TV, many think its this effortless, godlike machine that can do anything. Software companies perpetuate this myth with their “user-friendly” and “intuitive” interfaces that mask the real workings of the software which are more technical than the average user can handle. This is far from the truth. The reality is that “user friendly” is a marketing ploy, and computers are definitely not friendly to the average user, especially in a corporate environment.

    • #3180615

      I just love the attitude of those blinded by *nix

      by andeanderson ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      O.K. So you have forgotten when you didn’t know the difference between a monitor and a tv.

      It is NOT so much a loyalty to one operating system or the other. It IS the matter of being able to sit down at a keyboard and be able to use the computer without having to learn 30 different commands to accomplish the same thing, the GUI will win everytime.

      Microsoft has the market on User Friendly Documentation on how to use their systems. The public doesn’t care how it works, they just want it to work.

      Just like you don’t care how your car engine works, you just expect it to run when you turn the key on and if it doesn’t start you call a mechanic.

      Microsoft only has two basic operating systems and the controls for both are almost identical and are therefor user friendly.

      The world of *nix has about 300 different operating systems all loosely based on a single concept but is constantly being changed by anybody who feels like they want to change it, without any documentation for a normal (Public) user on how to use it.

      When someone has a question about the Microsoft product it is fairly easy to come by.

      When someone has a question about one of the 3,000 plus *nix products it is almost impossible to get a straight answer and you have to find someone who knows that specific version of that specific product.

      The only reason the *nix products are lagging behind in the noteriety of Viruses and Spyware is that they are not noteworthy and do not get the Hackerz the attention and recognition they crave. There are Viruses and Spyware out there for every OS out there.

      Sooo… Get over it already. People buy and use the easiest product to use. That’s why men buy electric razors now, instead of a straight razor, a hone to sharpen it with and a strop to put that final sharp edge on it.

      • #3180551

        Listen to AndeAnderson!

        by Anonymous ·

        In reply to I just love the attitude of those blinded by *nix

        The razor analogy is RIGHT ON! Think about it, why does MS still have such overwhelming market share if their products are inferior to the compettion. Answer: The software must be easy to use, read GUI, AND ubiquitous. Quality enters into it but only after the first too are satisfied. The questions that comes up is, doesn’t software become ubiquitous by being the best and therfore chosen most? The answer is not always yes. Bundling, pricing, and marketing (and luck)will determine the defacto standard as much as quality. Office’s displacement of all compettion category by category has shown this VERY clearly.

        In the end governments and companies that move away from MS are likely to do this inspite of the average user’s objection. This is not necessarily a bad thing. But don’t be so naive as to think that “because you built a better mousetrap the world will beat a path to your door”. Big business DOES NOT work that way, perhaps it should.

        And most ironic of all is that all these tech decisions are made for largely non-technical (read business/ political) reasons.

        I would be interested to hear anyones thoughts on this.

        • #3180542

          If ease of use is everything

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Listen to AndeAnderson!

          then why did Dow Chemical go in a few years back and rip all the MAC’s out of the peoples offices and put in Windows sytems?

          Are you going to say Windows is easier than a MAC?

          Also, the only people stepping up for this discussion are desktop people. Desktops are not the HEART of your companies computer network, but just a way to GET to the heart of the companies information. And the bigger the company, the less likely the mission critical systems will be a Windows server.

          The main point is the politics of business that you bring up. The techs generally do not get to choose the systems that are purchased. CEO/CIO’s have seen adds for Windows and so that is what they go with. A business model based on people not knowing about the product they are buying. Sounds like MS is doing something right! Too bad it isn’t their application building instead of application selling that is their strong suit.

          But take note, as linux gets more headlines these same CEO/CIO’s will start looking that way. And with Novell and IBM on board, this will be happening more and more. If as a tech you advise against a linux server because it is too hard, I will bet they will be looking for a new tech pretty quick.

        • #3181108

          Ease of use is a lot, but not everything.

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to If ease of use is everything

          The killer combination is ease of use AND being ubiquitous . The Mac is easy to use but the problem has been it’s relative isolation. MS gets away now with adequate or even substandard products because they largely dominate the market.

          In any area they are VERY good at marginalizing their competition while cornering a market.

          The Mac has never been able to develop the relationships needed to become a dominate player. Software is a business. Business rules dictate who is the number one provider.

          Your comment about desktops is interesting. I remember a quote from a head of a tech company years ago asking why any person would need a PC at their desk. If anything with the cost of the power of the hardware continuing to increase faster than the cost for availability of high speed network access, I would expect the trend towards DE-centralization would increase. I expect you will eventually see even large organizations with many “hearts” distributed amongst many super desktops in adhoc networks that pull data as needed. Centralized information management is only needed when it is more expensive to manage data in the operations. Where possible it is preferable to get business critical information decentralized but accessible.

        • #3180540

          More to the point

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Listen to AndeAnderson!

          I would just love to hear your reasoning as to why Word is so much better than Word Perfect.

          I can still remember those days when you said “Word Processor” it meant Word Perfect and M$ Word was nowhere to be seen.

          Col ]:)

        • #3180513

          Not better but king none-the-less

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to More to the point

          Hal you hit the nail right on the head. I would have picked lotus 123 as the example but word perfect is a perfect example as well. When word and excel and IE and acess and outlook (and fill in the blank here) came out they were basicaly poor knockoffs of the market leaders, but MS kept picking away and before you know it they are the market leaders. Why? and insidious plot? No, they were practically (or actually) given away at first, they were tightly bundled together, and by and large were a bit easier to use than the market leaders at the time. This combination has proved deadly for the old guard. MS wins because they have been the last one standing in basically every fight they picked. “Better” in the sense of the word you use doesn’t enter into it exactly.

        • #3179719

          Its not necessarily the “best” that is chosen

          by rknrlkid ·

          In reply to Listen to AndeAnderson!

          I tend to believe that choice in organizations is arbitrary, based on the whim of whoever can make a decision at the time.

          In 1987 while I was in the Army, the contract was with Zenith for the Z-248 system. It came standard with Lotus 1-2-3, Multimate and dBase III as part of the contract. In 1989, laptops were bought for all small units, and the software consisted of Enable. By 1992, Multimate was replaced by WordPerfect 5.1. EDS won a new contract (I think it was 1993), and their computers came preinstalled with Windows 3.1, but WordPerfect and Lotus 1-2-3 were added to them locally. When I got to Hawaii in 1995, everyone was standardizing to Microsoft Office.

          No logic or reasoning apparently, just a decision based on whoever made the contract, and in some cases (like with WordPerfect) the preference of someone with influence. I think that has alot more to do with what is being run than what is technically “best.”

      • #3180505


        by jmgarvin ·

        In reply to I just love the attitude of those blinded by *nix

        Your comment “The world of *nix has about 300 different operating systems all loosely based on a single concept but is constantly being changed by anybody who feels like they want to change it”

        Technically it is one kernel (you can check for yourself at and many distros. Most main stream distros follow the *nix conventions, others (like Red Hat) mostly follow convention, but they change some directory structure and minorly modify the some X GUI. If you know one “version” of *nix you know them all. It would be like switching from 2k to XP when you switch from Unix to Linux.

        “The only reason the *nix products are lagging behind in the noteriety of Viruses and Spyware is that they are not noteworthy and do not get the Hackerz the attention and recognition they crave”

        This is spurious logic at best. Just because something is popular doesn’t mean it is automatically insecure and prone to attacks. Look at Apache. It holds about 60% of the web server market share and it doesn’t have the problems of IIS.

        “When someone has a question about the Microsoft product it is fairly easy to come by.”

        HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Oh please! I had issues with animated windows in C# and couldn’t find WHY it was animating poorly. When I finally figured out the issue, it was due to a built in DirectX library that wasn’t fully documented!

      • #3169938

        liar or idiot

        by apotheon ·

        In reply to I just love the attitude of those blinded by *nix

        “The world of *nix has about 300 different operating systems all loosely based on a single concept but is constantly being changed by anybody who feels like they want to change it, without any documentation for a normal (Public) user on how to use it.”

        I’m guessing you’ve never used more than one unix verion. Unix is unix is unix. There’s a consistent interface, a consistent set of tools, and a consistent design. That’s sorta the point. Unix is far more consistent than Windows ever was (or will be, likely). Anyone who claims otherwise is lying or incompetent to know the difference.

        “When someone has a question about the Microsoft product it is fairly easy to come by.”

        Nonsense. The Linux community has literally won awards and been declared the “best tech support of the year”. Microsoft hasn’t done anything of the sort, and you have to [b]pay[/b] for access to anything like competent tech support for expensive Windows products.

        “The only reason the *nix products are lagging behind in the noteriety of Viruses and Spyware is that they are not noteworthy and do not get the Hackerz the attention and recognition they crave.”

        More indications of deception or ignorance. Popularity actually works to FLOSS’s favor. The more people using it, the more attention any potential security issues receive from people that want to fix them, and the more people that can fix them there are with a vested interest in doing so. Meanwhile, with closed source software, the number of people writing security patches and the like doesn’t change unless the vendor hires more programmers, leading to LESS security as it gets more popular — a problem Linux doesn’t have.

    • #3180604

      OS Religious War

      by jtmail ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      You know, maybe this OS loyalty IS a religious thing. As a pastor, I have found that people choose a church based more on its “user-friendliness” than its teachings and practices. As XP continues its unfriendliness path and Linux gets more friendly, we are likely to see an OS loyalty EXODUS.

      John T
      Lakeland, GA

      • #3180578

        Tricks of Satan?

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to OS Religious War

        So, with Linux getting a GUI that is as easy to use as a windows system is this just a trick by Satan to lure away the weak of faith?

    • #3180601

      MS Wannabes

      by elamess ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      Your shrieks remind me of the losing party in the last presidential election. They cried like little girls over losing Ohio to Bush but at least that’s over for now. What continues are the cries of frustration from you Linux folk who thought Linux would have bit Bill Gates in his wallet by now, surprise! If the Microsoft preference is a religion then the Linux movement is a cult. Of course, neither of these is true so why such zeal from yourself while calling others zealots?

      As far as I’m concerned, Microsoft has one and only one flaw. They try to be all things to all people, and from the people I’ve known over the past 14 years of my IT career, people who struggle to run simple maintenance on their hard drives, Microsoft has a hearty challenge.

      I’ve seen them sitting there in front of their computers cussing Bill Gates because they couldn’t figure out how to arrange their desktop icons the way they wanted. Lord Linux, these are your followers. They’re out there nodding their heads up and down over your article. They would probably buy into your alternative OS ploy, even purchase and install Linux. Then one day they will go to cuss a name because they will be unable to handle that operating system as well, but there won’t be a public target for their angst. Would you mind if they use yours?

      • #3180573

        I get cussed enough already

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to MS Wannabes

        So many people are getting from the original post only what they walk into the post with.

        The Anti-MSers thought it was a battle cry, and the MSers thought it was an attack on their doorsteps.

        It was to get both sides to not rule the other side out. Why is that so wrong?

        And yes, I am an advocate of many services (but not all) running on linux [b]servers,[/b] but recognise that the linux [b]desktop[/b] isn’t for everyone yet.

        • #3180568

          That’s the deal

          by rapell ·

          In reply to I get cussed enough already

          while most pple are fighting to rule the IT market, isn’t it time we appreciated all OSs for what they do best? Personally I think for front ends Windows is the deal because it’s basically designed for any kind of user i.e. even new users are not excited or afraid of the MS GUI, but for back ends *nix based computers are running the show, at least in my country. How many companies have you found around that run Unix servers but use windows desktops? Cooperation time!!

        • #3180534

          For mid to big business

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to That’s the deal

          That is the way to go Unix/Linux on the server end and the Windows machines well hidden away from the Internet safely behind several Unix Servers on the desktop.

          It works very well for so many companies it isn’t funny and I love it to as I know that so many of the nasties will be stopped by those terrible expensive to maintain Linux Servers that I just do not have to touch unless there are severe thunder storms or worse around. At these times everything gets closed down for its own protection and it is the only time that I’ve had to take a Unix/Linux server off line.

          Col ]:)

    • #3180587

      So many aficionados so little interface

      by stutan ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      “While I recognize that linux isn’t the answer for everyone in every situation, I also recognize that the MicroSoft machine has a lot of short comings that are generally overlooked by the faithful.” I do believe you are disillusioned. The short comings of “the Microsoft machine” as you put it are hardly overlooked. It is just that it is the best thing available currently. Until a distro of linux is released that doesn’t need a 3 inch thick instruction manual linux is doomed to be second rate. Do not get me confused with an “Anti-Linux” person I have used and love linux. But it is not very user friendly and that is where linux needs to focus if it ever plans to out “the Microsoft machine”

      • #3180511

        I have to disagree

        by hal 9000 ·

        In reply to So many aficionados so little interface

        Windows is great for the Desktop and for small servers if you can afford it but Unix is so much better for the servers that it isn’t funny.

        The real problem is that because some people only use M$ Windows and other software they think it is all that is worth using and because of their work do not realize just how good some of the other offerings are.

        What M$ does extremely well is sell product to those who really do not need it like just how many people would be happy to work with 95 or 98 today with the far smaller overhead and cheaper hardware? Do they really need a 3 + GIG CPU and .5 GIG of RAM? when a 300 CPU and 64 MEG or RAM would suffice for the work that they do?

        Today if people where not forced away from 98 SE just how many copies of XP do you think would be sold? I know when 98 & XP where sold together 98 consistently outsold XP to those paying their hard earned money. While 98 was no great security feature it didn’t leak as much as XP has been doing over the years and I still know of several companies who refuse to switch from 98 to XP even though they are paying for XP Pro Licenses they want and demand 98 to be installed on their desktops.

        What I have found interesting in this whole discussion is the almost total lack of understanding that computers are not limited to just the desktop but to Domain controllers and the like. It leaves me wondering just how many actual Techs there are posting here and how many data entry people are making up the numbers who can run the socks of one particular application provided that nothing needs changing in the way of Fields or Columns but just push the data in and then consider themselves as “Expert Computer Users.” I know it is something that I would never claim to do at all but I do get a lot of call outs to rearrange the fields and the like in these preprogrammed items because none of the experienced people who use it on a daily basis actually know how to use the application but only enter data.

        It reminds me of an old SF movie I saw a very long time ago now where everyone specialized in one part of the system but no one understood how the whole system worked so they would instigate changes in their own special area and then couldn’t understand why their change made something else that seemed totally unrelated to the change that they made fail to work.

        Currently I see IT heading that very same way and it will result in a disaster if it isn’t halted.

        Col ]:)

        • #3180496

          I assumed this was a desktop OS discussion

          by unclerob ·

          In reply to I have to disagree

          I read your post and although I agree with you for the most part, you mentioned computers not being limited to just desktop use but also running as domain controllers (and other types of servers). Although you are correct in making this statement, I felt that the entire discussion spawned by the original post was largely a desktop OS discussion which is why people have limited their responses to the desktop.

          The original post included this blurb:
          “The Viruses and Spyware that runs rampant on the Admin by default Windows systems are out of control. This verses the restricted user the *nix run at which even if you DID run an infected file the WORST you would do is trash your home directory, not the whole system.”

          Reading this led me as well as several others I’m sure to assume this was a linux vs. win desktop OS discussion.

          I’ll admit my experience with Unix is limited to being only a spectator, I’ve seen it but I haven’t messed with it enough to have any real affinity for it. My own experience is with my small farm of windows servers, all of them running Win2k Server (several years ago it was NT4). Although our own location is small compared to the rest of my company, we have win2k dc’s running at locations across the planet with never a hiccup. Although your UNIX servers may be more bulletproof and make better use of the server hardware than our win2k dc’s, I’ve never had any complaints and they run 24/7/365 without any problems along with our other servers(yes the hardware specs for the dc’s alone are stratospheric but you buy or lease what you can get, I’ll never complain)

          Just thought I would mention this since you thought the server side of this discussion was lacking (or missing altogether).

        • #3181100

          Guess “Computing” means something differnent

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to I assumed this was a desktop OS discussion

          to different people.

          To me, computing is any computer system used in work or home life.

          In the work life, if that *nix server were to die, we would be in for a world of hurt as it is our life blood and doesn’t matter how many pc’s we have if they can’t get to the file server or email server.

          Another reason is the desktop seems to be the big discussion these days so people must have thought this was just another one. Oh well, even [b][i]I[/i][/b] can’t be perfect ALL the time!

        • #3181079

          Well I guess IT means different things

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to I assumed this was a desktop OS discussion

          To different people. For me IT means everything from the printer on the end users desk to the Mainframe that is still used in the big places. But I started with computers when a computer took up floors of a building and I used Unix way back then.

          Then the PC sought of started and I was forced to go to first DOS and then Windows and honestly there are things that I could do with Unix 20 + years ago that are just not possible to do in XP or 2003 ES as far as limiting the ability of users to access or alter data or even what they can access.

          To me Windows Systems are way too open and just waiting for some form of hostile takeover either from inside the company or outside.

          But what really horrified me was with the advent of Windows 95 I saw a almost complete dumbing down of end users who no longer needed to know how to work a program properly but just point and click to get things done. Now this may have been good for some business as they could employ untrained staff but what I have seen happen is the loss of all the highly trained staff who could work the software and the retention of the untrained staff who are only capable of filling in the blanks and incapable of redesigning the template when a new one is required. But these untrained people are now considered as “Power Users” rather than nothing more than “Data Entry” people who really only have limited skills.

          Col ]:)

        • #3181038

          Unskilled data entry personel

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Well I guess IT means different things

          And the funny thing about these untrained employees is that they still think they “know” a package.

          If they can find a power switch to turn the system on, they are a power user. And then in the small businesses, it is this person that ends up being IT-by-default. Then they wonder why the server keeps going down. hmmmm, I wonder. But this is EXACTLY who many MS products are marketed to.

          Copy a file? Move a file? I love “download this file to my floppy?” and then “download it back to this other system”.

          Anyone remember the work “directory”?

        • #3180807

          Gooey Logic

          by techrepublic ·

          In reply to Unskilled data entry personel

          its funny you of all people used the phrase “unskilled data entry personnel”. Like the excuse you hear from a developer who doesn’t know how / want to build a user-proof interface…blame the user.

        • #3179728

          I guess I didn’t go into this enough to explain myself

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Gooey Logic

          I guess I didn’t go into this enough to explain myself. I have several users right now that every year end I have to spend about two weeks changing all of their files over for the next year.

          Everytime they need to keep track of a new account, I have to go and do this. I was hired to teach people how to work in spreadsheets, and run the network. Spreadsheet programming was not something I was suppose to be doing but the one person in accounting that made the sheets is not with the company and no one else wants to learn this so it gets dumped in my lap.

          I was talking applications such as Excel, not writting a program with a user interface.

          Now can I blame the users please?

        • #3170547

          I used to be a highly trained VDU Operator

          by tony hopkinson ·

          In reply to Unskilled data entry personel

          Course the access was through a dumb terminal with a HP3000 back end, so probably doesn’t count.

          MPE/XL rules
          Tee Hee

        • #3181032

          One man’s trash…..

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to Well I guess IT means different things


          I find it facinating that the advent of win 95 which made the PC easy enough to use so that someone with no computer knowledge could use it, and made PC sales skyrocket is horrifying to you.

          I remember when the PC was just a geek-only hobby product. The “a moron can use it GUI” is what made the PC a huge success.

          I think in the future the PC will continue to be dumbed down to the point where, when the technology improves enough, you will see a sticker on the back saying “no user servicable parts inside” and a virtual version of same regarding software. Just like TV’s, I remember opening the back and changing a tube(s) as needed. Solid state did away with that. The PC is moving there.

          Look at some of the hottest software, file management search tools all created so the user doesn’t have to know where they put their stuff. Now if only it worked for finding my car keys 😉

        • #3180900

          You missed his point about win95

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to One man’s trash…..

          as soon as people no longer have to be skilled in anyway, they are easier to replace and less of a value to the company and thus rate a lower wage.

          Highly skilled people make a higher wage than some shmoe off the streets that can only type data into a prepaired form.

          And back when I taught lotus 1-2-3, I started in DOS teaching working people how to use the application.

          Look around your office and decide which of the people sitting their would take more than a week to replace, including yourself.

          This dumbing down has also led to people not having proper respect for admins that HAVE TO KNOW what they are doing and have had extensive training to do what they do.

        • #3178816

          Surely your joking…

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to You missed his point about win95

          We agree that in today’s business environment EVERYONE can be replaced (from the CEO on down). One would be a fool to think otherwise.

          However, to say that keeping systems complicated to use helps ensures job security is just plain silly. Ease of use translates to improved efficiency. Improved efficiency increases profits.

          Now this may very well mean job cuts, and we have to be prepared to roll with the punches. That may suck but that is the state of business today. Keeping systems arcane DOES NOT ensure you get to keep your job. More likely it ensures that some other company will be able to do the same thing your company does cheaper, and your company (and your job) will go the way of the dodo.

      • #3181098

        It’s called Ubuntu

        by ploosh ·

        In reply to So many aficionados so little interface

        I am from the camp that likes to experiment with software and hardware to see which solves problems the best (while creating the least). Linux had always been on my mind as a better workstation OS, but as several colleagues indicate “pointy clicky, not command line.” Because of this, Linux had not been friendly at the workstation level …until now.

        It’s called Ubuntu ( I installed it on a workstation at the beginning of the year on a dual boot system to try it out. The goal was to see what Windows programs I was dependent on and if it was possible to run Linux in a time critical, mixed network environment that included Windows and Mac users. Success came quickly.

        I had tried other Linux distros (some of which I really liked) but Ubuntu requires almost no knowledge of working at the command line. I say “almost” no knowledge because I found myself learning the command line occasionally to tweak things, see diskspace, etc. – things the average user might not need to do (or you might not want them to do). Installation of applications and hardware configuration will require administrative access (also called “root”), but Ubuntu handles this using “sudo” which is not true root access. This is really beneficial if you are trying to limit what users can do to their machines. This type of security is also one of the reasons why Linux claims to be more secure than Windows – it requires permission to install anything (ie viruses). Trojans will always be a threat, but Linux provides some very simple, very obvious ways of solving some of the disastrous Windows flaws.

        Finding and installing applications on Ubuntu is really simple if those applications are within the package manager. If not, you will need to hit the command line. The package manager is a pretty superior method for handling sofware compared to Windows, from a user perspective. It’s basically a database that lets you know which dependencies your applications will require, indicates if you already have a version installed, if it needs to be updated, etc. It makes adding and removing applications very efficient.

        Ubuntu also has a fantastic user guide and solutions to problems are solved by the user community very quickly. The project also has backing with deep pockets, a solid development team, and a commitment to remain free.

        My advice: try it. Personally, I’ve come to really love this OS. There are problems (a la .NET), but I’ve found the transition from Windows workstation to Linux workstation to be far easier than it has ever been before. And it’s only going to get easier – might as well be on the forefront of knowledge than those that will lag behind. 🙂

        • #3181083

          This is what a lot here fail to realize

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to It’s called Ubuntu

          While you can download for free every Linux Distro you can also buy them at the same time and then they come with all the documentation that is required and more often than not leaves the M$ offerings for dead in literature.

          The functionality is also far superior than any Windows system I’ve ever worked on but I’m biased as I started with Unix systems and I just loved the way that they worked and how easy it was to control them. I’m constantly told this at every M$ meeting that I go to or whenever I ring the Techs at M$ for help they just insist that I’m expecting far too much from the system and I reply that I could do such and such with Unix 20 + years ago why can’t I do it with this modern system.

          Personally I think the .Net framework is a dead end that M$ was forced to go down to avoid paying for the Java add ons which the .Net is trying to replace and do away with Java. But as M$ by no means is as dominate as they seem to think they are I think it will be a short lived thing and even on the latest computers today that I install I have to install the Java Packages if only for on-line banking as these big boys are unwilling to go with the .Net framework for their log on pages.

          Personally I don’t think Linux will hit the desktop in the short term it will eventually get there once mission critical applications are developed that are capable of sharing their data with the Windows based packages that are currently available. For small business the Accounting Packages are a very big deal as they just send off their data to their accountants to work with for tax and if this has to be printed out and then reentered into a different package just to do their tax it isn’t an economical thing to do.

          Col ]:)

        • #3181029

          But standards do change

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to This is what a lot here fail to realize

          And most of the MS clones here won’t remember a time when Lotus 1-2-3 was THE standard for all accounting and business.

          The also won’t remember that WordPerfect was THE word processor standard of ALL business.

          If WordPerfect and Lotus 1-2-3 would have joined instead of trying to each come up with their own office suit, MS would have never gotten it’s foot in the door. MS office was at the right place at the right time, nothing more, nothing less.

          Standards changed before, they will change again.

          The only thing that doesn’t change in technology is that things change.

        • #3180998

          OpenOffice for open standards….

          by ploosh ·

          In reply to This is what a lot here fail to realize

          As far as office suites, Sun’s OpenOffice v2.0 is pretty impressive ( Files can be saved to any of the major application file types or to the open standard. Exchanging documents between them has been seamless in my experience. The suite is a free download and has a Windows installer. It’s silly not to experiment with it. After that, some cost analysis would show you the true value of implementing it.

          One trend that is becoming obvious is that users are looking for flexibility in their technology. They want a platform from which they can move into multiple directions depending on need. You see this most obviously with entertainment where users want a platform and then the ability to use devices for voice, video, audio, games, GPS, etc. The base might be anything from a mobile phone to a PSP to a Windows Media Center PC.

          This trend of flexibility will carry over into business applications as users find that the systems they use at home are not much different from those they use at the office: notebooks, mobile phones, PDAs, VOIP, whatever. Open standards will provide this flexibility. Open standards will also be your saving grace, as many managers and technologists have probably experienced the frustration of a latest user’s proprietary “find” that is now their application or technology of choice.

        • #3180907

          .Net isn’t THAT bad…

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to This is what a lot here fail to realize

          Because of .Net much more of your code is more portable and with the JIT compiler you will find your homemade apps are a little more efficient on everyones system.

          The problems with .Net are pretty minor and at least MS is working towards making code portable (although there is much to be desired in that respect to other OSs).

          C# is a spiffy language and the built-in libs for C++ are pretty sweet.

        • #3172409


          by apotheon ·

          In reply to .Net isn’t THAT bad…

          .NET/Mono, with C# or J#, is exactly what Java should have been in the first place. Some of the semantic structure of the C# and J# languages is a bit less spiffy than for Java, from what I’ve seen, but the RAD capability for .NET/Mono and the VM design is much, much better than what Sun has cranked out and managed to gum up with various unnecessarily obtuse design decisions.

    • #3180585

      If it aint fixed, dont broke it

      by hcetrepus ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      I used to think I fell into the category of a “windows worshiper”. But for me, it’s about what works. Windows works and has worked, YOU get over it.

    • #3180584

      One Zealot to Another

      by jterry ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      Why is it that when I say I have not had a problem with MS Windows or SP2 that makes me a MS zealot who refuses to see the problems? Does that same reasonong make you a Linux Zealot? We have tried Linux on a test machine and we have a couple of programs that will not run on Linux correctly. If I was having a problem with MS Windows or SP2 I would be looking to change, but I’m not going to go through the expense of changing because other poeple are experiencing problems.

      • #3180571

        A little late to the dance?

        by jdclyde ·

        In reply to One Zealot to Another

        If using both Windows and linux in a mixed environment and advocating the same to many makes me a linux zealot then so be it.

        The fact that you didn’t personally have a problem with SP2 does not make you the zealot. People would be inclined to make that assumption based on your other replies to people that DID have a lot of problems and placed the blame everywhere and on everyone but MS and Gates.

        And as I pointed out in the other discussion, LOTS of people are having lots of problems with SP2. MS wouldn’t have so much information on it on their web site if it wasn’t happening a lot.

        But I guess that doesn’t matter.

        I am glad windows works for you. Not everyone had the option of doing a bare metal install when it came time to go to SP2. Will you be so lucky with SP3 comes out?

        • #3180562

          why Linux || Windows ?

          by rapell ·

          In reply to A little late to the dance?

          I would suggest we all go Linux && Windows, drink, eat, and be merry. Why ever we never learn that you cannot leave on bread alone, but also….=))

        • #3180548

          The funny thing about MS people fighting linux

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to why Linux || Windows ?

          is that the better linux does means MicroSoft will have to be more competitive and customer oriented. They will have to put out a higher quality package than they have become accustom to packaging.

          This is a win for everyone, no matter which platform you like.

        • #3180502

          Well put!

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to The funny thing about MS people fighting linux

          Linux makes MS take a hard look a being top notch. Finally MS is taking security seriously because of *nix. Finally MS is “lowering” their pricing scheme because of Linux. Finally IIS can be a web server! 😉

        • #3181026

          You had me going for a minute there

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Well put!

          then when you added the part of IIS being a web server I know you were just teasing me.

          Companies without competition have no reason to work to improve the service or product they offer. Competition MAKES you improve your system.

          Try to tell that to someone with a closed mind though.

        • #3180968

          Re: The funny thing about MS people fighting linux

          by ·

          In reply to The funny thing about MS people fighting linux

          is that the better linux does means MicroSoft will have to be more competitive and customer oriented. They will have to put out a higher quality package than they have become accustom to packaging.

          This is a win for everyone, no matter which platform you like.[/quote]

          Well said. I just hope they get that kick in their pants sooner rather than later. 🙂

        • #3181041

          One more time

          by jterry ·

          In reply to A little late to the dance?

          We use linux also on two of our servers. It fits that purpose. I questioned the times when other poeple had problems with SP2 if the problem could be with the other software or hardware. If this is an impossibility I’m sorry. I also stated that I have read many horror stories from poeple who were having problems with SP2. I only wish they could have told me something more about the problem than the fact that it was a Microsoft conspiracy. It does matter. Although I have not had any problems yet I might. I will worry about SP3 when it comes out but I won’t automatically condemn it before I see it.

        • #3179615

          What are you smoking?

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to One more time

          You make these statements that seem to paint others as hysterics because they rightly place blame at Microsoft’s feet when Microsoft releases a “patch” (more like an OS rewrite) that breaks their servers, and go on to misrepresent how they went about discussing their problems. Then, of course, you play the innocent, as though you’re being unfairly accused of zealotry.

          News flash: you’re acting just like some kind of marketing cabana boy.

          “I only wish they could have told me something more about the problem than the fact that it was a Microsoft conspiracy,” you say. What about the online posted lists of suddenly incompatible software? What about the Microsoft knowledge base articles indicating common failures? What about [b]my own several-paragraph explanations of SATA failure because SP2 uninstalled the drivers for the adapter?![/b]

          Troll. That’s all you are.

        • #3170728

          Where do you think the inspiration for this discussion came from?

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to What are you smoking?

          Where do you think the inspiration for this discussion came from?

          After making blanket statements that could not be backed up, he would indeed play victom and that he was misunderstood.

          When he accused Col of being the problem behind his P4 installs, it was pretty clear what this guy was all about.

          When he started out with the claim that SP2 didn’t cause problems, it was the techs and third party vendors. When I linked for him many of the problems that MS has on their site, he would just not answer.

          What makes me laugh is how many people here called me a linux zealot just because I think MS should be held to a higher standard than they are now. They see only what they want to see which is the parts in favor of linux, but not the parts where I have been in favor of windows.

          Oh well.

          “But it’s all right now, I learned my lesson well.
          You see, ya can’t please everyone, so ya got to please yourself”

        • #3171991

          Now that just sounds

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Where do you think the inspiration for this discussion came from?

          Plain Kinky. 😀

          But enjoy yourself none the less. :p

          Col ]:)

        • #3170698


          by jterry ·

          In reply to What are you smoking?

          If I said something that hurt someones feelings I apologize. I did not however stoop to calling names. I am a MS user and until I see something better I will keep using it. I know MS products have problems but I am not convinced that Linux is better. I have read some interesting comments in this discussion that will cause me to research the use of Linux further. We do use Linux for two of our servers but I don’t think it is feasable for my desktops. If I ever do convert to Linux it will be because I received good information from knowledgeable poeple and not because “I hate Microsoft”!

        • #3172081

          But that was the whole point

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to Thanks

          of this post!

          to get people to look at both sides, good AND bad to see what is available.

          I didn’t say stop using MS products, I just said they should be held to a higher standard than they are right now.

          I also tried pointing out where one may be a better fit than the other.

          As for calling names, the worst I EVER did was one instance of calling you “clueless” because you were taking postings as an attack on YOU and got your back hunched up instead of listening to what people were trying to say. That is the closest to a personal attack, as I TRY to confront the idea, not the person.

          As for hating MicroSoft, it is more their business practices that most people hate.

          Care to start over? No hard feelings here.

        • #3172074

          I’ll be your huckleberry…

          by jck ·

          In reply to Thanks

          Lemme help you out, jdclyde. I’m not afraid to hurt feelings ]:)

          jterry…please…do me a favor…and go back over and get under Bill Gates’ butt. He’s missing some lips there.

          Linux desktop is feasible. You can run apps for Windows on Linux, so users would have the same look and feel and almost zero retraining would be necessary.

          It’s not as profitable or convenient for you maybe, but is a heck of a lot more stable. You’re not worried about how productivity would increase or your systems would have less breakdown. You’re worried that, in the short term, it will cause downtime that will make you look bad and make your people less productive.

          Get your head out of the short-term backend of the business world and do what’s right…don’t use a half-cocked answer about doing what’s right when you’re only doing what makes you the most and is most convenient.

          Sorry…had to stir the pot…time to go home and have a beer. GOOD NIGHT!!! 🙂

        • #3172364

          Give the benifit of the doubt

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to I’ll be your huckleberry…

          People can be misunderstood easily in these posts (as you have learned).

          I am always willing to meet someone half way, or sometimes a little bit over the half way mark. The purpose of the post wasn’t to start a flame war or to have the next post be “I’m leaving TR (thanks jd)” and have them take their ball and go home.

          There ARE some in here that have shown themselves to truely be nothing but trolls and worthy of nothing but loathing and scorn. jterry hasn’t gone that far yet and I am willing to take him at his word. Good enough for me.

          wordworker on the other hand is WAY out here, with no hope of finding mutual grounds on this topic. If he got switched off of Windows he would have to learn a new word processor and would have to change his login name. Can’t have that at any cost!

        • #3172051

          You want a reason to move to Linux?

          by jmgarvin ·

          In reply to Thanks

          1) No insane licensing schemas
          2) Most of the same apps
          3) Stability
          4) Security
          5) VMware

          MS, on the other hand, SHOULD be accountable for their poor business practices, their crazy licensing schemes, and their unreliable and insecure software!

        • #3171987

          One more thing as well

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to You want a reason to move to Linux?

          Over here at least they call us “Certified Partners” which in any other conversation would mean that you are mad and are locked away.

          Maybe it’s just a term that doesn’t travel well but after hearing all about “WUS” I’m not inclined to believe that. 😀

          Intel call us “Channel Partners” which is just so much nicer. :p

          Col ]:)

        • #3172477

          being Microsoft and Certified

          by jck ·

          In reply to You want a reason to move to Linux?

          isn’t that repetitive? ]:)

          it amazes me…

          You can buy a new part and put into your car and if it blows up your car because it was defective and makes it unusable, you can sue.

          If you buy an MS operating system and install it and it blows up your computer and ruins your business because their install software was defective, you have no recourse.

          I use Microsoft at work because my employer makes me.

          I am running most machines (4 of 6) at home still on Windows 98SE because it’s stable enough. My laptop has XP Home and has shutdown and startup problems constantly. My main PC has swappable drives for XP and Mandrake Linux.

          Once I buy Win4Lin or Cedega and decide they let me run what Windows-based apps I want to under Linux, I’ll probably end Windows XP use on the main PC.

          Microsoft is slowly going down. Just like they found legal ways to shuck responsibility for damages incurred by installation and use of their software, people will keep finding legal ways to get around having to buy their software (i.e.- emulators, interfaces, etc.)

        • #3172367


          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to You want a reason to move to Linux?

          Many of the parts for your car to be covered under warranty MUST be installed by a Certified Mechanic. Esp if it is electronic.

          But the point about defective and being able to sue is in large part because it is hard to put a dollar value on what you lose when your computer goes belly up. How much is a one worth and how much is a zero worth. do you have an equal amount of each and how many of each?

          Just doesn’t have the recognition yet.

        • #3172358

          While that may be true for home units

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to You want a reason to move to Linux?

          It certainly is not for business computers.

          A little while ago I had an insurance job to report on the destruction of a new server where the PS has failed and allowed mains voltage into the case. Naturally everything was destroyed but everything connected to the network was destroyed as well apparently CAT 5 cable isn’t supposed to carry 240 V AC. 🙂

          Now for the report I had to list the damages done to everything connected to the network which in this case was 250 computers several Fax machines and a couple of network printers.
          I placed a $ value on each destroyed hardware and some accountant placed a $ value on lost production. The difference here is it was the maker of the server was being sued so they got or their receivers will get the bill when it eventually hits the courts. While you can charge for lost production you just can not apply this lost production to MS and that is wrong.

          I’ve had so many units fail just by being patched and they required a complete reload to get working again and M$ latter released a different patch to stop the problem occurring again. When things like that happen MS should be held responsible!

          Col ]:)

    • #3180532

      I read the post and I’m trying to figure out who the real ZEALOT is…

      by unclerob ·

      In reply to So many zealots, so little time

      You wrote “Why is it, even when presented with hard facts people refuse to budge on there religion of OS worship?”. Here’s a question, which hard facts are you referring to? Are people being presented with linux info on a daily basis by the media be it paper, tv, radio, etc? Answer is NO. People use what they know. Microsoft does a good job of advertising Windows & Office and any other products they intend to sell. Advertising is the only way for people to hear about something. There is plenty of linux info available on the net but it’s not being pushed out to the average end user who in all probability has heard the term “Linux” used in some form but doesn’t know what it is, what it can do and how to obtain it.

      You also wrote (sorry to paraphrase) “Is having to not know as much really worth a system that crashes on a much more frequent basis than it’s Unix and Novell counterparts?” How often are these Windows pc’s crashing? At my place of work, we’re all running Windows in one of it’s forms (Win9x, Win2k or WinXP) and rarely do users experience or complain about crashes and these are users that really use their systems (email, multiple office apps, as400 client sessions, internet, printing, faxing, database use, custom apps, etc.) Windows prevails in the workplace because it does work. There can be times when a user can experience problems but they way you describe it, these problems happen on a non-stop, ongoing basis which really isn’t accurate – if it was really that bad, people would stop using it.

      You mention security as another issue “There is also the issue of security, and anyone that has ever spent at least five minutes at the SANS site would see that there is a much bigger turn around to getting exploits patched from MicroSoft than the *nix OS’s. The difficulty of exploiting the *nix bugs is also much higher, as they do not have graphical script kiddie tools that can point and click their way into the system. The Viruses and Spyware that runs rampant on the Admin by default Windows systems are out of control. This verses the restricted user the *nix run at which even if you DID run an infected file the WORST you would do is trash your home directory, not the whole system.” None of my users have ever spent 5min on the SANS site, they don’t need to, they just run Windows and whatever apps they require to perform their jobs. Security isn’t their concern, it’s the job of the local systems admin to ensure that any windows security issue is taken care of. As long as it may take to get these security patches rolled out by Microsoft and sometimes it seems to be longer than required, it’s not an issue that my users need to deal with. Also ADMIN by default windows systems aren’t what your typical system admin would roll out to a user (or at least they shouldn’t). All of my users run as RESTRICTED user types, users don’t need to install software on their machines, that’s a task that an ADMIN would perform. Allowing users to run their pc’s with administrative privileges is irresponsible, that’s how problems get started when unauthorized software installs take place without prior consent. Users are meant to use their pc’s to perform work related tasks, if it’s not work related they shouldn’t be doing it. A home user is obviously at a disadvantage because he doesn’t have a local IT dept to fall back on so people should operate their pc’s with some responsibility and if they don’t know what they’re doing, they should ask a friend or do some research before attempting something unfamiliar – failure to do results in spyware, viruses and operating system problems. But that also applies to life in general, using common sense is always wise, and if you don’t then don’t complain when bad things happen.

      People don’t refuse to budge on the religion of OS worship because it’s not a religion, I have a religion I follow and it has nothing to do with computers, mixing the 2 together in the same sentence has a conotation that’s near sacriligious. People use Windows (ask them and I’m sure they’ll tell you) because they don’t know there are other alternatives to use and if they do in fact know, they’re not willing to change because Windows is comfortable and familiar to them and Linux appears to be too difficult to pick up (appearance is everything). Maybe when Linux is paired down to a few real choices rather than the 3000 flavors that it currently sits at, users will be more inclined to switch over and try it out and be pleasantly surprised that there is a good alternative to use.

      Until then it’s hard to fault the general public for not switching over. The Windows world isn’t that bad right now, and I can’t fault Microsoft for every security issue out there just like I can’t blame the police for not being at the scene of a crime just before it happens so that they can stop it in time. Let’s place the blame on those criminals that enjoy perpetuating crimes that take the form of spyware, viruses, spam email and taking advantages of operating system security issues and make them truly responsible for their actions.

      Your post may not have been a ‘Nix vs. Windows flame war but it was definitely one sided. Take into account that if this was a Linux world and Windows was the new kid on the block, we’d be having the same discussion about the shortcomings of Linux and how we should give Windows a chance.

      If you want people to switch, take a stand, tell them which exact distribution to download because there are too many to choose from(mention a workstation and also a server OS), provide a link to the downloads, provide a link for easy to use & understand documentation, provide a link to software that can be downloaded and also a link on how to download and install software on a linux box (an area IMHO that is truly lacking). Setup a one stop shop for all of these linux needs so that user’s don’t have to search thousands of websites to extract all of this different information. I have tried several different versions and haven’t been truly satisfied by any one distribution, my most recent & pleasing linux discovery was Beatrix v2005.1 – not bad at all, this linux camp is starting to get the message on how to win over regular pc users who are for the most beginners and aren’t technically inclined to know enough about how their operating system works and what they need to do to get it to work – they also make their linux dist perform 2 tricks, run entirely from the cd itself (which configure’s it’s network connection by itself) or allow for an HD install for permanent use. I liked it better than Novell’s latest linux desktop offering which is as bloated as windows ever was if not more.

      Until you & other Linux advocates can do this, Linux will not be a real contender for the general home or work user’s desktop experience and will remain a tool only to be used by the technically adept – something most users aren’t.

      Just my 0.02 cents cdn – feel free to agree or disagree, that’s what this place is all about! I look forward to your comments.

      • #3180501

        Yep you are correct

        by hal 9000 ·

        In reply to I read the post and I’m trying to figure out who the real ZEALOT is…

        The general desktop or home user will not be affected by the shortcomings of Windows only the System Admins and those who don’t hide their M$ stuff very well behind a Nix front end. You can read that as SERVER.

        Linux was developed so that people could have a low cost Unix which by the way was the first real OS that was used in computers that bridged different hardware layouts to a standard user interface and guess what it is still used on the mainframes and Internet servers out there mainly because of security but also because currently M$ just doesn’t have anything scalable enough to fit the bill.

        Linux is actually a “Real Contender” for the high end user which isn’t the desktop although it is used in several high end desktop configurations where brute processing power is required and the waste of system resources can not be tolerated like CG work.

        What I can not believe with this whole discussion is the way it has totally over looked the server and high end market and only focused on the desktop which really is only a small part of the IT industry. Admittedly it may be the most visible but it is by no means the biggest part of the IT industry and without a Nix of some description we would have no Internet that is so vital for all of those desktop users.

        Why is it that the low end of the market seems to get all the attention and the mid to high end is forgotten?

        Col ]:)

        • #3181097

          A partial answer…

          by unclerob ·

          In reply to Yep you are correct

          The low end of the market as you put it is geared toward your normal everyday user, there’s more users in this market than in any other segment of the market – that’s why so much advertising is in place in this area and why so little is in place for the mid to high end market. I don’t believe the mid to high end is forgotten, it’s just smarter & more efficient to focus toward the area which has the greatest potential for growth.

          We’re not (at least I’m not anyways) replacing servers every year and reinstalling server OS’s every year, once these server solutions are in place, they’re meant to function for a decent period of time before requiring replacement. I guess these static solutions aren’t as sexy which is why they don’t get the limelight that the desktop receives.

          And although you are correct that Linux is a real choice for the high end user, there aren’t that many of us high end users compared to the number of average users out there and that’s a fact. In the end, we’re all just part of the bigger picture – a large portion of which is made up by the average user who for all intents & purposes doesn’t know that “without a ‘Nix of some kind” (among other products) is responsible for enabling the current infrastructure of the internet.

          You seem pretty passionate about this discussion on the server side of things with respect to the win-nix debate, I can respect that. It’s always good to hear that the other camp has a good group of leaders, I’m always looking to learn new things and I’m not a ‘nixophobe (made up that term which is hopefully clear enough). Proof is in the pudding though, Give us examples, point me to websites, give me your opinion on which ‘nix distro’s to try out, unix server products to learn about and experience. All I really currently know is Microsoft & Windows (both desktop & server platforms), as I said before I’m willing to learn.

        • #3181065

          Well the best place to start looking

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to A partial answer…

          Is the Microsoft Knowledge base. Look up the scalability of 2003 ES it is limited to 128 CPU’s which may sound a lot but really is small potato’s in comparison to the real work units that are used in the banks and places like that. I used to do government work many years ago and places like the Defense Department could not live with Windows Servers as they are way too limited and far too hungry for system resources.

          Even at the 2003 Release the HP Quad unit that MS had to show off was limited to 20% CPU usage on each and every CPU. I never did get a reasonable explanation for that one.

          But look at what you get for your money with both products. With Microsoft you buy a OS and then software and for any desktop the software generally costs more than the hardware, with any of the Linux Distros you get it all and much more than you’re likely to actually need in the way of software and I’m not talking about the free downloads but the ones that you pay for and a manual that will un rings around a company like MS.

          Log onto the Tech-net MS forum and ask about large server farms or a mainframe most likely they will not know what you are asking or even worse suggest you use 2003 ES as a platform to work with which is so inadequate it isn’t funny and it also gobbles up system resources at an alarming rate as a general rule of thumb any Windows system will consume about 30% of the available system resources before you load anything onto the unit, now you can get away with this on the desktop but it is unusable on the high end servers or if you do run it you need more processing power to get the same result and with no security as well.

          There is a very good reason that Banks, Defense Departments and the like use Unix on their main servers that connect direct to the outside world that is because it is harder to break and almost impossible to get code to run without allowing its installation.

          The big ISP’s all use either Linux or Unix as currently MS just doesn’t have a product that can fill this gap Hot Mail was a perfect example of this case, do you remember what happened when MS got their hands on that and tried to run it on Windows Servers?

          Well it is now a little after 4.00 AM here and I have to be at a job by 6.30 AM so I’m going to try to get a few hours sleep before today starts again and I’m back to making money off the Windows installations that I’ve put it. 😀

          Just on a side note here this year the Desktop market is expected to shrink a little while the Notebook market is expected to continue its rapid growth, very soon there will be so few desktops left that they will be the pre-built boxes and the Notebooks will be the custom built units. Currently it is the Server and Notebook markets that are growing and the desktop is diminishing. I believe that the Intel site has that data although it may be on a restricted basis for Channel Partners only.

          Col ]:)

        • #3181025

          Thank you

          by jterry ·

          In reply to Well the best place to start looking

          for some intelligent points about Linux. They were very interesting. I realize from your remarks that Linux or Unix is probably better for the server systems but what can you tell me about the desktop systems as far as software that can run on it and also be compatible with Windows if I want to exchange files or communicate? I would appreciate an honest answer without bashing either system.

        • #3179554

          Well this is something that I really hate

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Thank you

          As it appears that I’m coming across as anti M$ which I’m not it’s that just some of the postings here are so incorrect or just plain wrong and not because of any deliberate attempt to mislead but through ignorance of the alternatives.

          It really depends on what you need to do if you just need a Office application like a WP, Spread Sheet, D Base, Presentations and the like Open Office is a good alternative and can even be downloaded and installed on a Windows OS. It currently supports all the common file types and can work in each without a problem and save to whatever file format you need.

          You start to run across problems when you mention specific applications like accounting packages as these are mostly used by small business as their accountant uses a particular package and they want their data to be easily transfered when Tax Time comes around so for things like that you are virtually tied to the M$ desktop. Currently Code-weavers has a product available called Win 4 Lin which allows some Windows Apps to work in a Virtual Environment on a Nix OS but while useful this is not really the answer as you are loosing performance by using these packages and possibly usability as well.

          I do not like Windows Emulators for this reason and generally prefer not to use them, but for most other applications there are various applications available to run on a Nix OS and other than some specially written Windows Apps almost everything is usable on a Linux desktop but you have to chose the right one.

          I actually use Lycoris Desktop LX for a lot of end user desktops as it has the look and feel of Windows so it isn’t as off putting as Debian can be if setup for performance. The only thing with Lycoris is it is a light weight Linux so it lacks a lot of the nice things that come with the other distributions but it is an extremely easy transition from Windows and a very good starting point for those who want to learn Linux. Of course for networks you have to install Samba which doesn’t come with this particular basic installation but it was only designed for single user desktops and to be as user friendly as possible while retaining the Linux features. It comes on 1 CD and then things like Red Hat come on 7 CD’s and there is anything in between it all depends on what you need the end user to do, but all of these come with all of the common software already available to install if required. For a more advanced desktop I use the next version of Lycoris up or Knoppix which is a good alternative and networks perfectly with any existing Windows LAN. They both again come with a lot of the more common software that you would require like Open Office, a CD/DVD burning package, Web and E-Mail apps, graphic app and a whole range of other things that may or may not be of use depending on what is actually required.

          Then there is Mandrake who has now seemed to have worked their way out of their previous problems and for as little as $5.00 US per month you can access their application Data Base with at least 100K of available downloads. Places like Source Forge and the like also have a vast range of applications available for downloading as well but again it all depends on what is required by the end user. I generally have Windows on the desktops of the Office Managers and anyone accessing accounting packages and then always Windows on any specialized propriety software that is mission critical for that particular business, but for places like Sales quite a lot of these Desktops can run one of the above Nix’s without a problem and everything that is required can be done easily by the user to get the sale or whatever it is that they do but again it all depends on what other software is being used by the business if they need to share some propriety software around it’s all Windows with Linux on the servers.

          What you need to do is tailor a complete network for the business and fit the software to the needs required by the users depending upon what they are actually doing. The last small LAN that I installed had one Nix Server 2 LT’s running XP and 5 Workstations 2 running XP one running 2000 and the others running Knoppix it was a nice tight integration and seamless to the users. This actually started out as the person asking for 3 computers and owing to their location 3 DSL lines in to connect to the Internet for each workstation. I suggested a small P 2 P network as a better and cheaper alternative as the savings in just one year on 2 DSL connections would have more than paid for the installation several times over actually. Then they where discussing Notebooks just as I left or actually an overseas trip and asking each other how they would manage to get e-mail to each other so I asked did they require some Notebooks which went down a treat. The a week latter I was rung and told that they had another business coming in so they would require a workstation for that which while being a separate business would be actually owned by them. By this time it was up to 4 Workstations and 2 LT’s so I suggested a small Server so that one of the workstations would not need to be constantly kept running as I refuse to just add a modem to a multi port router and call that a network. I then suggested it might be a good idea to have the server out of the road in a side room so it wasn’t taking up space in one of the offices. At this time I had still yet to actually see the building and was just working off what they thought they needed. Then a few week latter they came up with the idea to allow the field workers access to the network to enter in their time sheets so another workstation was required and the main sales office wanted a second monitor so the salesman could be one side of the desk and the customer the other side and both see the same picture another of my suggestions that one and still I had not seen the actual building but I had the basics already worked out for what they needed and there where at that stage only the minor details to work out like wiring the place with Cat cable and the like. I had already discussed the pro’s and con’s of a wireless network and I pushed for wiring the place just to keep costs down and minimizing security issues as I didn’t expect them to have a real working knowledge of the system and I wasn’t going to be there all the time.

          This was all worked out before I even saw the building and I had most of the hardware built and ready to install before I even actually saw the building which while not my preferred way to work was the only possible way in this case.

          The day that they took over the building I had a telephone guy in there running wires for the phones I was running the network cables and within 2 days they had a completely operational office. I also added UPS’s for each workstation owing to the poor mains power in that area and a small ones for each of the LT’s. The only real problem was the electrician which they organized so I didn’t lose any sleep over the delay on that end. But within two days of them taking possession of the building and yard they had a fully operational network a Hosted Web Page and a complete phone system installed and running there where even 2 wireless phones so people could walk out into the yard to show off equipment and still be available if required on the phone.

          The only real problem that came about was the insistence of the owners wife who would be working there for a decent laser printer that was capable of using A3 paper which I spent a few days looking for a suitable one only to discover that they had a photocopier that was net workable and usable as a printer that got to me a bit mainly because I wasn’t allowed into the office in their house because “It was a mess” as if I was the slightest bit interested I just wanted to see if they had anything worth taking to the new place and since they where already taking the photocopier they didn’t think to even look at its specs.

          The wife and separate business are running XP Pro the Server is running Debian in a headless configuration and is accessible from any of the main workstations for maintenance purposes the salesman’s and the outside workers stations are running Knoppix and the workstation in the owners office is running 2000 because of some program that he requires and that is the recommended OS for that particular program. All the workstations share the same M’Boards type of RAM, Video Cards the only real difference between these computers is the CPU’s and the amount of RAM on one unit. Easy to maintain and keep up to date as required the Server is built on an Tyan Dual Xeon M’Board and the LT’s are propriety systems again with P4 and 1 GIG of RAM installed with built in wireless and blue tooth other than maybe a USB hub they need nothing else and in all likely hood could be running Knoppix as well but because these would be traveling world wide I chose to install XP onto them just for ease of maintains if they where overseas and wanted to log onto an international ISP to receive and send e-mail mainly from their hotel rooms. Every workstation has a Canon 560 Printer with individual ink tanks and a USB connection for the digital cameras if it is required to print directly from the cameras, the already mentioned Photocopier come network printer which was shared across the entire network and then 2 Fax/Answering machines complete the installation. The DSL modem/router was supplied by their ISP but to my specs and everything was setup in a short time. The biggest problem and it really was not much of a problem was installing MYOB on the two computers and then importing the business data into the program and the main problem there was the owners wife who wanted access to the other companies financial transactions.

          While a small installation it saved then several K just in MS license fees alone and they do not need the MS software to do the required job. They had set aside 25K for the installation and I supplied 3 extra units and a Server which all came in under 17K with much better hardware than they would ever hope to have got from the main off the shelf suppliers.

          Col ]:)

        • #3181069

          Low end?

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to Yep you are correct

          Surely you realize that to a very large extent the prevalence of the computer in our daily lives is a direct result of the rise of the desktop computer.

          The PC is the public face of computing. The PC has been the engine of inovation in the areas of productivity, ease of use, graphics, and communications. Big iron has evolved in a fairly straight line, faster/ cheaper more bang for your buck… but radical advances in how we use the computer have largely happened on the desktop. Think the GUI, the mouse, the personal printer, voice recognition, e-mail, music management, home entertainment centers, hard drive DVRs, PIMs.

          These are examples of sea changes in what a computer is how you use it, and they come from the desktop not the mainframe. The mainframe is a means to an end. The end is the user interaction, that interaction more often than not happens at a desktop. In the sense that it has had such a huge impact on how computers are used I would argue that the desktop is the “biggest” part of the industry.

        • #3181056

          Silly Me!

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to Low end?

          Here I was thinking that it was Xerox who built the first PC and integrated the network on a Unix Platform with that terrible GUI and pointing device.

          Now wasn’t it called the Lydia or something like that and when Xerox decided that there was no future in the PC they then brought in all the competition and showed them what they had achieved {read that as Steve Jobs and Bill Gates}

          Today we are yet to see the same level of integration that they prototype had and you call that development? We have only made things bigger and faster not necessarily better. :p

          Col ]:)

        • #3181028

          One of the biggest business blunders EVER

          by Anonymous ·

          In reply to Silly Me!

          Right the PARC did develop some of the PC standbys of today. They did not choose to capitalize on them either which was in hindsight an epic bad call!

          The Apple Lisa was another early GUI that laid the groundwork for the PC explosion.

          But what is “better” to you? Modern desktops do amazing things and can be run by people with the most basic of skills (read young children, elderly, handicapped) with minimal, or no, training, just point and click. My three and five year old children can use the PC running their teaching software. Whereas a command line interface requires that the user has internalized the language of the interface. My three year old could not run DOS, or *nix.

          Based on the fact that in one scenario the PC is usable and in the other it is not, I say usable is “better”.

          So again my question is to you, what is “better”?

        • #3180905

          And if both are in a GUI?

          by jdclyde ·

          In reply to One of the biggest business blunders EVER

          you are taking for granted that the *nix desktop would not be running a GUI while the windows system would be.

          Now with both in a gui that the five year old could use, which is “better”?

          Guess you would have to go back to real questions like cost of hardware to run and stability.


        • #3170153

          In fact, Mac OS X

          by jamesrl ·

          In reply to And if both are in a GUI?

          is a GUI running on a Unix base. It was a release that took a huge amount of time and effort on Apple’s part, to change the underlying architecture, add new functionality, and maintain some level of backwards compatibility.


        • #3169946

          MacOS X design

          by apotheon ·

          In reply to And if both are in a GUI?

          MacOS X is proof that it’s easier to make Unix pretty than it is to make Windows secure and stable.

          Actually, MacOS X isn’t just Apple effort. It uses a modified Mach/*BSD kernel and the OpenStep framework. Most of what’s in MacOS X was bought or borrowed from somewhere else, and the only work involved was in integrating the various components.

          There’s already an OpenStep framework for unix unassociated with MacOS X, in fact, called GNUstep. I’m using it on the laptop from which I’m posting it, and on my desktop/workstation system, with Debian GNU/Linux in both cases. It’s about the prettiest, most functionally smooth and flexible GUI that I’ve ever had the pleasure to use. I find the Mac implementation on MacOS X to be obtuse and unwieldy by comparison.

        • #3170190

          If I remember correctly didn’t the Xerox prototype have a GUI.?

          by hal 9000 ·

          In reply to One of the biggest business blunders EVER

          That was what caused both Jobs and Gates to wet themselves and rush out to build as good a mouse trap.

          Which incidentally they have not as yet reached. If Xerox had of continued with that project there would be no Microsoft today most likely no Linux and we would all be using a form of Unix with a GUI interface on the front. Well everyone except the few Apple users anyway.

          It was that Xerox prototype which gave both Jobs and Gates the idea of the GUI as an alternative to the command line or the menu system that was developed for DOS that was so commonly used at the time. Really what is better scrolling down a menu to get a app running on a system that only uses a very small footprint for the OS of having all these nice pictures of things {which incidentally most people still do not understand without the writing under the Icons} and the ability to place your own picture on the desktop with a huge foot print that consumes more system resources that the old DOS boxes had available?

          I personally would be taking performance any day of the week as that is what has been driving hardware development so much over the last 20 odd years faster CPU’s RAM and bus speeds but we then see it overlaid with massive OS’s that are suffering dramatically from code bloat so that these very powerful computers that really far outstrip the abilities of mainframes of 20 – 30 years ago perform like a 286 on steroids and are generally slow to boot shut down and their clock cycles are clogged with useless OS instructions. So to get around the short comings of the OS the hardware is made even faster so that these things appear to start as quickly as the old 286’s did when running DOS and booting into a menu.

          MS has singularly failed to really address security issues until recently and even then the basic architecture of the OS is so fundamentally flawed that it will prove impossible to properly secure them from malicious code being executed unknown to the user.

          Is XP nice for a end user with virtually no computer experience YES! but this could be as easily addressed with a DOS system being developed to a greater extent than it ever was. If the very basic DOS was rewritten to 64 BIT with a better file system wouldn’t that be a better option and with the menus that where available toward the end of DOS even if they where only rewritten to take advantage of the new architectures of the hardware it would be just as easy to open programs as you could read the words of what they where. Even something as simple as the old 3 D Menu had 10 initial listings or menus that where then sub dividable into 10 more individual sub menus to 4 different levels, now even that simple program would hold the ability to launch far more programs than are currently stored on most current computers.

          Is the GUI really necessary as you could program a menu to perform the same operations as you would use in a command line prompt without the need to even know even the most basic things when it came to command likes. I used to have a entire sub menu all ten items set aside for system maintenance things like defrag, XCOPY and just routine system maintenance.

          What I’m asking here is that code bloated OS really a benefit over what was available to a properly setup DOS system and would something similar to a DOS system without the command line readily visible today be better than what we currently have offered from Microsoft?

          Remember that all XP really is, is a glorified menu system with pretty pictures is it really an improvement? If you where to rewrite something like DOS to make it easier to setup LAN and Internet connections so easy that it did it automatically on instal