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The Truth About Linux and Windows 594

Posted by Hemos
from the getting-under-the-covers dept.
petrus4 writes "Groklaw has an update on the Laura DiDio saga. Apparently, her complaints about "Linux extremists" notwithstanding, cooler heads than the usual suspects are asking questions about her research. A very interesting read, and one which will hopefully encourage corporate readers to regard the Yankee Group's findings with the requisite metric ton of salt in the future."
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The Truth About Linux and Windows

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:16PM (#12338913)
    I thought it was interesting that she spun the fact that only half of the respondents of the survey thought Linux was cheaper with the implication that the other half thought Windows was cheaper. Not so: [businessweek.com]

    One slide said "Half of Users Say Linux Deployment Is Cheaper than Windows." You might draw the conclusion that the other half say Windows is cheaper than Linux. But you'd be wrong. The bar chart on the slide showed that 34% of the respondents have not deployed a Linux server, so have no grounds for an opinion, and only 9% said their Linux deployments were more expensive than Windows deployments.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:29PM (#12339057)
    "That word...I do not think it means what you think it means." : )

    By any chance, did you mean "divisive"?
    I know, being picky about spelling. But in my defense I will point out that "deviceive" isn't even a word!
  • More references (Score:3, Informative)

    by karvind (833059) <karvind@gm[ ].com ['ail' in gap]> on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:38PM (#12339143) Journal
    Here [thechannelinsider.com] is a little older article from Terri Kershner of Haverstick Consulting on LvsW. Gist: In today's rapidly changing IT environment, the tortoise can still win if the hare's only path is blocked.

    Joe Zwers wrote a good article about Truth in benchmarking [serverworldmagazine.com] and how some companies blantantly manipulate data to reach marketing goals.

    Slashdot coverage on earlier Linux vs Windows studies: here [slashdot.org], here [slashdot.org], here [slashdot.org], here [slashdot.org] and here [slashdot.org].

    We also coverd a Microsoft study on W vs L [slashdot.org]

  • TCO Laugher (Score:5, Informative)

    by salesgeek (263995) on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:39PM (#12339159) Homepage
    As a veteran of selling on TCO, I've always got a kick out of these studies because they are so disconnected from reality. How can something that is like getting a five course buffet-style dinner for free somehow cost more than buying a meal a la carte, one dish at a time? I suppose it's the fact you've got to help yourself at the Linux buffet while they'll spoon feed you over at MS (and they really don't spoonfeed).

    Linux has five advantages that simply render the conversation moot:

    Cost of licenses
    Customizability
    Training Costs
    Security
    Out of box functionality

    Linux licensing costs are self-explanatory. Hard to beat zero.

    Linux is completely customizable. You can change anything and everything to fit your need.

    MCSE certs are expensive. Linux certs are less so. Conversions from windows end users to linux are fairly painless. Sorry, Yankee, but learning how to operate a one windowing user interface is pretty easy when you are familiar with another.

    Linux Security isn't perfect - but it's a quantum leap from Windows.

    Where Windows cannot compete is with the out of the box capabilites of most every Linux distro. With Windows, you have to purchase thousands of dollars of software licenses to do what I can with my free download of Mephis or whatever. End user software is included. So is Server software. I'm out a minimum of $300 just to be able to do basic productivity. All those CALs add up with Windows.

  • by RailGunner (554645) on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:49PM (#12339261) Journal
    Corporate Burger King recently (within the last 5 years) chose a Quickservice Point of Sale application, developed and ran under Red Hat Linux.

    They chose it over a Windows based POS. (Aloha, now owned by Radiant Systems.. though in Aloha's case POS = piece of shit)

    So there's one. Don't you read trade magazines?

    As far as Quickbooks, etc, have you ever tried GnuCash? It may have what you're looking for, and it's included on several Live CD's - take a look over on Distrowatch.com, pick one or ten, and try them out.

  • Re:no more politics! (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:53PM (#12339303)
    Here:
    <p> <p> <p> <br> <br> <br> <p> <br>

    You need them more than I do.
  • by aaarrrgggh (9205) on Monday April 25, 2005 @02:58PM (#12339358)
    No, I bill myself out at roughly $15/hour. ...and therin lies your problem.
  • by tburke (29991) on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:01PM (#12339395)
    I don't get your point, since the article is from BusinessWeek [businessweek.com].

    Unless you believe that BusinessWeek has no consideration for corporate interests.
  • by monk2b (693792) <alphamonk@@@gmail...com> on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:08PM (#12339475)
    Well I have installed linux servers thousands of times.
    I have not had a problem with bad installs in years.
    I would agree years ago linux installs were not as easy
    as they could have been, but time have changed a lot things.
    If I get new hardware in, I test it to see if I have the drivers
    I need to do the install. It is true linux does not
    have all drivers for every piece of hardware out. If you have tried
    installing linux lately, and it did not go well for you,
    You still do not need the services of a consultant. What you
    most likely need is the url of the hardware compatibility list.

    Administering a linux server in not unlike maintaining
    Microsoft servers. You will need to take the time to get accustomed to
    the administrative task and applications. It is not out of your reach
    to accomplish this. You should use the same sticktoitness that you
    used to learn the Microsoft Os.

    Good Luck on your next install.
  • by digidave (259925) on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:27PM (#12339658)
    A couple non-critical points that I think a lot of non-Linux users miss:

    1) All Linux distributions are not the same, or even close. Suse or Ubuntu are about all a beginner should use. Some distros are downright scary for non-experts (Slackware) while others pretend to be friendly even though they are not (Fedora/RedHat).

    2) Servers are easy. Even on Windows it's harder to get a desktop system working with all hardware. In fact, Linux often does a better job at detecting hardware than Windows because on Windows you're expected to be able to go download a driver or two while most drivers on Linux come with the distribution. For example, an HP P1000 printer requires a 10MB download on Windows, but 'just works' with most Linux distros.
  • Re:The truth is... (Score:4, Informative)

    by EvilTwinSkippy (112490) <yoda@@@etoyoc...com> on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:41PM (#12339791) Homepage Journal
    Actually, when you get into a touchscreen based environment, operating systems that expect 2 button (or more) mouses are a liability.

    /Works at a science museum with a LOT of touch-screen based apps. And before that developing industrial GUI's using touch screens.

  • by Junta (36770) on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:42PM (#12339807)
    So much for not getting caught up in a debate, that was pretty dismissive of Linux for a 'nothing is absolutely better' post.

    Gaming, agreed, the driver support is there for fancy games and the commercial support is there for publishers, while at the same time nearly all good open-source games get ported to Windows. This is not a technical advantage, but an advantage of market penetration, and one that is a chicken and egg dilemma that may never get solved (gamers won't embrace linux until there are games, publishers won't embrace linux until gamers do).

    Business applications, it really depends on which 'business apps' we are talking about. For many applications, you can essentially quote the previous paragraph. Quicken, MSOffice, and the incredible amount of one-off crap that can only afford to cater to one platform, and only one platform has a large enough market to sustain them....

    However, a number of professional engineering applications can benefit greatly from running on Linux workstations. The business app argument is simply too broad, and ultimately this argument comes down to what applications are needed...

    Enterprise servers, here is one field where I find it hard to believe anyone would automatically dismiss Linux and proclaim Windows the hands-down winner. To some extent, this too boils down to what administrative staff you can acquire and their experience, but if there is one profitable place where Linux shines it is making effective use of hardware resources in a robust, easily managed and reliable fashion. I will say for directory, maybe AD could be considered the better choice, Directory in general hasn't needed to be high performance, and ease of administration of AD is fairly high compared to OpenLDAP. However, MySQL/PostgreSQL, Apache, Samba, et. al. offer more flexibility than the MS-only counterparts, and even when the application can run under either platform, they are generally oriented toward linux-like behavior, feel more native in Linux, and greatly benefit from less-cruft found in Linux.

    Streaming media to your TV? I would say MythTV hands down is *the* incredible platform of choice. I dislike their file browser for non-TV videos (it assumes encoded movies and a flat-view would be appropriate, even though series would be better represented by expandable entries), but I wrote my own and that really isn't the majority of people who would want that feature.
  • by MartinB (51897) on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:48PM (#12339875) Homepage
    Similarly, for ... business applications, enterprise servers ... you won't go wrong with Windows.

    SAP on Linux [sap.com]?
    Siebel on Linux [techtarget.com]?
    ePiphany [epiphany.com] on Linux?
    Oracle on Linux [oracle.com]?
    Websphere on Linux [ibm.com]?
    Weblogic on Linux [bea.com]?
    Linux on bladeservers [ibm.com], Power architecture [ibm.com] and mainframes [ibm.com]?

    Mi amo, you have indeed a very limited view of Linux, enterprise servers and business applications, or possibly both.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 25, 2005 @03:53PM (#12339921)
    Your read of the licence is incorrect, exactly as they expected it to be.

    MySQL is GPL so you can install it and use it for whatever you want, the only thing you can't do is link you app/make modifications and distribute them without distributing the source too.

    Their terms are quite ambiguous as to trick people to think exactly the way you did.
  • by I_Want_This_ID (678839) on Monday April 25, 2005 @05:03PM (#12340712)
    So you're lumping ALL MBA's into one category and ALL programmers into another?

    Seems pretty stupid to me.

    I'm an MBA and I don't admire people like Bill Gates. I love linux and OSS. I'm not a fan of Microsoft, but I am a gamer. I'm waiting for the time a few years from now when gaming hits linux full force and I can move completely away from microsoft.

    I'm a data architect and have a naturally sceptical mind. I probably swallow less bullshit than you.
  • by Acer500 (846698) on Monday April 25, 2005 @05:42PM (#12341229) Journal
    Interesting. Here, most have Windows and Linux both, or just Windows.

    Games run better or are Windows-only, and we work in a Windows shop so work is also Windows-centric too.

    But many are using Firefox, so it's not that we prefer to pay for something we can have for free, it's just that switching to Linux isn't "free" (at least until the support for many of the things we Windows users take for granted is there).
  • by sumdumass (711423) on Monday April 25, 2005 @11:54PM (#12344665) Journal
    You can make the same statment about alot of things in either windows or linux. If you get new hardware, there probably won't be any drivers supported in either windows or linux and this is the crux of the argument. Because you found a network card that works in windows without a driver doesn't mean that a new one won't require a driver. It is about the timing of the release and the age of the card. Even things like wether or not the manufactuer paid microsoft to include it in the install (thru the whql testing) has to be considered here.

    All in all, a driver would have probably been developed at some time for the wirless card. The question i would ask is "why didn't you check to see if the car was supported by linux before getting it?>" Another question would be "is there actualy a driver but you couldn't figure out how to use it?" Most wireless network cards use a set of comunication chips and the drivers are clasified by the chip name in linux were you find driver by the card manufacturers and type in windows. There are some wireless cards that didn't work and i don't know if that was ever changed or not so it is possible there isn't a driver. However i think it is still possible that there is a driver but you don't know about it or aren't asociating a broadcom chip with a linksys wireless card.

    Note: i pulled those names out of the air to ilistrate how the differences can be in driver names. Linksys probably doesn't use a broadcom chip or broadcom might not even make a wireles chip. Often a company produces a product based on other established chips and make them work better or to thier "niche". linux just labels to the chip t o cover more then one card were windows drivers tend to be card specific.

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