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2012 May 28 09:01

Reasons to Avoid Microsoft

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[Linux/Open Source]

Linux/Open Source

These pages are a compilation of links and quotes to news articles and others sources that might help convince you to switch to Linux.

  • Netflix: Why we use and contribute to open source software (Netflix Tech Blog, 2010.12.10)
    [Linux/Open Source] Our budget, measured in dollars, time, people, and energy, is limited and we must therefore focus our technology development efforts on that streaming video software that clearly differentiates Netflix and creates delight for our customers. These limits require that we stand on the shoulders of giants who have solved technology challenges shared in common by all companies that operate at Internet scale. ... We do utilize some commercial software but there is often the alternative choice of utilizing open source software, preferably open source software that implements an open standard. ... he great thing about a good open source project that solves a shared challenge is that it develops it's own momentum and it is sustained for a long time by a virtuous cycle of continuous improvement. At Netflix we jumped on for the ride a long time ago and we have benefited enormously from the virtuous cycles of actively evolving open source projects. We benefit from the continuous improvements provided by the community of contributors outside of Netflix. We also benefit by contributing back the changes we make to the projects. By sharing our bug fixes and new features back out into the community, the community then in turn continues to improve upon bug fixes and new features that originated at Netflix and then we complete the cycle by bring those improvements back into Netflix.

  • Office of the State [of California] CIO IT Policy Letter: Open Source Software Policy (California Office of the State Chief Information Officer, 2010.01.07)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Government] The purpose of this Information Technology Policy Letter (ITPL) is to: Formally establish the use of Open Source Software (OSS) in California state government as an acceptable practice ... This policy provides guidance on the use of Open Source Software (OSS) ... The OCIO permits the use of OSS.

  • French army sides with Mozilla in Microsoft email war (Reuters, 2009.12.10)
    [MS Outlook] [Government] [Linux/Open Source] A new email client unveiled by Mozilla this week contains code from an unusual source -- the French military, which decided the open source product was more secure than Microsoft's rival Outlook. ... France's military chose open source software after an internal government debate [...] culminated in a [...] directive requiring state agencies 'Seek maximum technological and commercial independence.' ... The French government is beginning to move to other open source software, including Linux instead of Windows and OpenOffice instead of Microsoft Office.

  • New [US Department of Defense] Memo on Open Source Software (Slashdot.org, 2009.10.28)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Government] 'Misconceptions and misinterpretations... have hampered effective DoD use and development of OSS.' The new memo tries to counter those misconceptions and misinterpretations, and is very positive about OSS. In particular, it lists a number of potential advantages of OSS, and recommends that in certain cases the DoD release software as OSS.

  • IBM and Ubuntu roll Linux for U.S desktops vs Windows 7 (InternetNews Blogs, 2009.10.20)
    [Linux/Open Source] IBM and Canonical are now announcing the launch of Linux and cloud-based desktop software in the U.S. The effort was originally announced more than a year ago, in August of 2008 as the Microsoft-Free PC effort. The basic idea is to have an Linux OS, with IBM smart client applications called Open Collaboration Client Solution software (OCCS) (Lotus Symphony and Notes) for enterprise apps.

  • EvriChart: A Linux Success Story (ZDNet Blogs, 2009.10.20)
    [Linux/Open Source] Tony Maro, CIO of EvriChart, a hospital records management and archiving business, successfully migrated his company's Windows-based line of business document management extranet application and his employees' 40-odd Windows-based desktops to a 100 percent Linux-based server and desktop infrastructure.

  • [Ontario] researchers tout cheap eHealth alternative (CBC News, 2009.10.09)
    [Linux/Open Source] Researchers at Hamilton's McMaster University say they have devised an electronic medical records system that can be implemented by physicians across Ontario for two per cent of the money the provincial government has spent on eHealth Ontario. [...] Around 600 doctors across the country -- including 450 family physicians in Ontario -- currently use the software. The software is open-source, which means users are allowed access to its basic code. Users are free to add to or modify the software without fear of legal repercussions... Because it's open-source, OSCAR is free. The costs to set it up come in the form of servers, hardware and support staff. [...] [In] a report released Wednesday, Ontario Auditor General Jim McCarter said the province had wasted [a $1 billion investment] and eHealth had little to show for its work.

  • IBM Throws Out Microsoft Office (Linux Magazine, 2009.09.12)
    [Linux/Open Source] 360,000 IBM workers have been told to stop using Microsoft Office and switch to the Open Office-based software Symphony. ... IBM's management have obviously decided to practice what they preach. 330,000 IBM workers already use Symphony...

  • Microsoft Acknowledges Linux threat to Windows client (Good Gear, 2009.08.05)
    [Linux/Open Source] The move is an acknowledgment of the first viable competition from Linux to Microsoft's Windows client business, due mainly to the use of Linux on netbooks, which are rising in prominence as alternatives to full-sized notebooks.

  • U.S. Postal Service Gives Stamp of Approval To FOSS [Free and Open Source Software] (OStatic, 2009.07.10)
    [Government] [Linux/Open Source] The U.S. Postal Service (USPS) has switched 1,300 of the servers that manage its package tracking system to a Linux environment. The move has taken the better part of a year since all the original system code was written in Cobol and had to be converted for Linux -- a less expensive option than rewriting it altogether.

  • The Hidden Cost of Using Microsoft Software (Slashdot.org, 2009.06.30)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt] Detractors of free software like to point out it's not really 'free,' and claim that its Total Cost of Ownership is often comparable with closed-source solutions... [yet] they never include a very real extra that users of Microsoft's products frequently have to pay: the cost of cleaning up malware infections. For example, the UK city of Manchester has just paid out nearly $2.5 million to clean up the Conficker worm...

  • City of Vancouver embraces open data, standards and source (CBC.ca, 2009.05.22)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Government] Vancouver city council has endorsed the principles of making its data open and accessible to everyone where possible, adopting open standards for that data and considering open source software when replacing existing applications. ... About 15 members of the public signed up to speak about the motion. All who spoke were in favour, Reimer said. "The only sort of negative [comment] was 'Can't you go further? Can't you do more?'"

  • Dvorak Likes Linux (PC Magazine, 2009.03.09)
    [Linux/Open Source] 'I'm tired of dealing with Windows malware, patch Tuesday, and the never-ending deterioration of the OS as it clogs up like a drain in a greasy-spoon restaurant. I can't take it anymore.' ... 'the biggest differences between Ubuntu and Windows are the cost and the subsequent headaches, because Microsoft is constantly fretting over bootleg copies. The company monitors machines to make sure they are running legal copies of software. There have already been instances of computers shut down by Microsoft HQ because of some glitch in the cloud. This is simply unacceptable. I don't want to rely on a system like that.' ... 'If I had a small or mid-size company, I'd probably use only Linux and open-source software, just to stay out of the way of the software police and their onerous "audits" — another abhorrent situation that, to me, is intolerable.'

  • HP Opens Up Open Source for Small Businesses (OStatic, 2008.12.11)
    [Linux/Open Source] HP is approaching this market with both fists flying. Wednesday, it announced two new open source products, geared to small businesses and educational institutions.

  • Move Your Business from Windows to Linux (PC World, 2008.07.06)
    [Linux/Open Source] Windows XP is available only as a costly 'downgrade' from Windows Vista... If that feels like a waste of your small business's precious IT budget, and you're still looking for an alternative to Windows Vista, look no further than Linux. The latest distributions are free, easy to install, and highly customizable; they harness your existing hardware without overtaxing it; and they include a wealth of productivity applications and utilities. ... Linux is different from Windows, but it isn't an alien life form. The human investment you make in transitioning away from expensive Windows and Office licenses may pay for itself quickly. More important, you'll be free to run the desktop and server software of your choice, on hardware you can afford.

  • Linux captures the 'green' flag, beats Windows 2008 power-saving measures (Network World, 2008.06.09)
    [Linux/Open Source] Independent tests show that Red Hat Linux pulls as much as 12% less power than Windows 2008 on identical hardware. For this test, we examined power consumption as a way to judge whether Windows Server 2008 or Linux is, in fact, the 'greener' operating system. As the price of power hits record heights, power reduction mechanisms shipping within an operating system should play a key role in you energy conservation plan. Our tests point to Linux as the winner of the green flag by margins that topped out at 12%.

  • KDE on Linux now de facto platform for Brazil primary school education system (SMB Tech Advice.com, 2008.04.30)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Education] Brazil has made KDE on Linux the official computing platform of the primary education system. [...] [I'm] elated to see that 52 million young people will grow up in a free (as in freedom) environment where they will learn and flourish without the trappings of proprietary technology.

  • Geneva schools completely switch to Open Source ((IDABC) Interoperable Delivery of European eGovernment Services to public Administrations, Businesses and Citizens), 2008.04.24)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Education] About 70,000 students and their 7,000 teachers in the Geneva school district will gradually be moving to Open Source.

  • Ubuntu breathes new life into school's abandoned hardware (Computerworld, 2008.04.08)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Education] Implementing a kiosk mode Kubuntu setup allowed Westall Secondary School, located in eastern Melbourne, to save money, exact greater control over security measures, and extend the life of older and discarded hardware without sacrificing performance. But according to [the school's IT support magager], the 'huge amount of flexibility' offered by the Linux operating system was the primary motive behind its adoption.

  • Canadian school district serves up lessons on the power of Linux (ITBusiness.ca, 2008.04.07)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Education] For two large school districts -- in Canada and the U.S. -- Linux and other open source software is the plat du jour on the education menu. ... The largest Linux implementation is running close to 200 diskless clients in a single school. ... 'We get better support with open source software: online wikis, forums, mailing lists etc are much faster and better to get support than phoning up Microsoft and listening to someone read off answers from flash cards.' ... 'We give everyone FreeNX access to their Linux desktop from home so they can get all the same programs without having to install Linux at home.'

  • 9000 PCs in Swiss schools going Linux only (ZDNet Education, 2008.04.06)
    [Linux/Open Source] [Education] Beginning this September, all 9000 computers [in Swiss schools] will run only [the Ubuntu distribution of Linux, and other] free and open source software. While officials are happy to be saving money on licensing, the Department of Public instruction largely made the move out of what they considered best practices for student education...

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  • True or False: E-Waste (CNN, 2007.12.03)
    [Linux/Open Source] True or False: Switching from a Windows-operated computer to a Linux-operated one could slash computer-generated e-waste levels by 50%. The answer is: TRUE

  • 13 reasons why Linux should be on your desktop (DesktopLinux.com, 2007.10.16)
    [Linux/Open Source] Vista is a Wagner Opera that is usually late to start, takes too long to finish, and is spoilt by floorboards creaking under the weight of the cast. Mac OS X Leopard, meanwhile, is the late show in an exclusive nightclub where the drinks are always too expensive. In contrast, the Linux desktop is the free show in the park across the street -- it imposes some discomforts on the audience, but provides plenty of entertainment.

  • The Next Leap for Linux (New York Times, 2007.10.04)
    [Linux/Open Source] Unlike Windows from Microsoft and OS X from Apple, Linux is not owned, updated or controlled by a single company. Thousands of developers around the world work on Linux, making improvements and issuing new versions several times a year. ... Because Dell does not have to pay a licensing fee for the operating system, the computers are $80 cheaper than PCs with Windows Vista Home Premium or $50 cheaper than the stripped-down Vista Basic edition. ... Thanks to open source developers, there are thousands more free programs. An Add/Remove function actually makes finding programs easier with Linux than it is for Mac and Windows. Without having to go to Web sites, it lets you browse through categories of software. It took me only seconds to find several additional music players, a PDF reader and other programs. ... with prices starting as low as free, you certainly cannot complain about the price.

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