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Windows vs Linux

By Steve@SMC ·
Has anyone seen any REAL comparisons of Windows verses Linux TCO? I have seen the now infamous IDC report and was very disappointed. I guess IDC isn't immune to Bill's money. I'm looking for a non biased factual report. I would like to come to my own conclusions.

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From where I sit

by LordInfidel In reply to Windows vs Linux

While this is not a report, just an observation. And I have been using linux for a while, both at work, home and clients.

But on a corporate scale, linux on the desktop is still not a real viable option.

Most tech support centers are not even remotely equipped to handle linux questions. In fact the mere mention of the word will get you a "We don't support that". It is even worse then if you call and say your on a mac.

Now the major vendors support linux for server class machines. But that is a whole different ballgame.

Now would I use linux as a NIS domain and File Server. Absolutely. But not for the desktop.

Not unless you are a hardcore software development company and your average user has a above average IQ and can program in C and Perl.

I dare to say that most IT staff are not even remotely qualified to troubleshoot a linux box.
So training your IT staff to support linux would bring raise your TCO. Even without the license issues.

Now if you go with RedHat and buy the enterprise support, then you are still paying fee's, so it is not really free.

But put linux versus windows in the DNS and Firewall worlds. Linux hands down, not even a contest there. Web serving that is different, IIS is much easier to use then Apache, but Apache can be inhernetly more secure. Although when an IIS box is put into the hands of someone like myself, I can secure the **** out of to the point of it being a extremely sour target for the would be hacker.

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Apples and Oranges

by admin In reply to Windows vs Linux

Use the right tool for the right job.

Any comparison I have seen focusing on desktops really already sets MS as the standard.

This really misses what is good about Linux (Network Tools, Security, Reliability) and of course, what I find to be a certain direct ease of use compared to having to sort out all the crazy language and crap MS puts in to try to make it so any fool can operate it's product enough to get by. To me, it seems anyone armed with some good general knowledge and list of commands can use Linux well. MS on the other hand requires rote learning, as many tasks are hidden deep beneath the GUI. Really, I find a lot of things easy to do in Linux are registry level changes in Windows, and these are still limited and more difficult to understand or modify exactly to your liking.

Of course that's it really- Linux should only be chosen as a tool to perform a job it does best, as should MS. That's why MS tends to go to end users and nix in all forms to servers and personal PC's for those that know how.

If you really want to come to your own conclusions, just use both and decide what tasks each does best for you. It never hurts to have too many tools. :)

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Lycoris Desktop/LX

by jardinier In reply to Apples and Oranges

In his efforts to bring me up to speed, Colin Luck kindly supplied me with a copy of Lycoris Desktop/LX, which I have installed in a special partition on my Windows 98 SE computer. Unfortunately the particular computer (Compaq) uses some uncommon drivers, and Lycoris didn't recognise them. However, on a machine with more standard hardware, the Lycoris obviously would have auto-detected all the hardware, making it as easy to install as Windows.
The appearance is very similar to XP, and I am looking forward to have many adventures on it.

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For Colin and you it's great!

by admin In reply to Lycoris Desktop/LX

I'm really not an elitist, but pragmatically speaking, if I give that desktop to joe user and expect him to use it at my business where he has to integrate with all of our partners who use Windows, and also add the fact that all of his training is in Windows, well, even if he transistions well it costs us more than the 200$ for the Windows OS WITH Software Assurance.

Time is money at my place of employment. Free things are never really free.

On a personal level though, I'll look into it! Thanks! :)

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by djent In reply to Windows vs Linux

Why not just load Linux and draw your own conclusions. All comparisons are colored by the author's bias and experiances, it would be best for you to live your own experiance.

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Depends on the Business

by Deadly Ernest In reply to Windows vs Linux

The TCO of running Linux will depend upon the business needs, the business support system, and your current system.

Linux is far cheaper and more stable, but they are not the final costs involved.

I have been involved in evaluating the installation of Linux into three different business environments, two went ahead one did not, the decision was based solely on total costs in each case.

Case 1
Small business, circa mid 2001, 10 users all stand alone PCs with Win 3.11 MS Word for Windows 2a, MS Excel 4. Client wanted to upgrade all hardware and software, and have a file server and shared Internet access.

The hardware costs worked out the same for both, which ever way he went the staff would need training on all the software, and support was going to be on a call-out basis. thus the only difference in cost was for the software. This worked out to about $26,000 more to buy full licences for all the software to set up as a fully compliant MS system. Using Linux and shareware office package (Star Office I think it was called) was chosen to save that $26,000. For his business it was a significant difference in that year's budget.

Case 2
Circa mid 2002. business with 80 users had an existing LAN and servers, all running Win98SE, Win NT4 servers, with Office 97; in-house tech support. Wanted to upgrade all hardware and software and evaluated cost of going with Linux as one of their senior staff had read a report about the cheaper licences. Total cost of upgrading to MS Windows was cheaper than going to Linux. Final decision was to Upgrade to Win XP Pro with Win 2K Server, and keep the Office 97.
Reason being that the cost of retraining all staff in the sue of the Linux software, especially the tech staff (who were very knowledgeable in MS Windows but knew nothing about Linux) was more than they could afford.

Case 3
Late 2002, business with 150 users, LAN, servers and specialised software on Win98SE with Win NT4, Office 95, outsourced tech staff. Company had to make major upgrades to their specialised software, essentially rewrite from scratch after 15 years of minor changes. Evaluated costs for upgrade to be based on amoratisation over 5 years.

Final decision to rewrite software on a Linux based system, replace all hardware using Linux and use Open Office for the Office package. New hardware to be built and software installed by new IT support contractor. Main reason being the flexibility of Linux and its stability. They calculated they would save around $500,000 over the 5 years on licence costs and reduced support calls. they saw the training as being an insignificant issue as the office packages were seen as being close enough for most people to work out with some handouts.

Thus the choice is clearly dependent upon your business needs and related conversion costs for the users.

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linux advantages

by gonzalo.raffo In reply to Windows vs Linux

-linux is a stable platform which has a better performance than comparable microsfot operating system
-there are lots of free software for it
-works with generic drivers

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