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EU GNU is Not Unix Government Open Source Software Linux IT

Spain's Extremadura Starts Move To GNU/Linux, Open Source 182

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the better-living-through-free-software dept.
jrepin writes "The government of Spain's autonomous region of Extremadura has begun the switch to open source of it desktop PCs. The government expects the majority of its 40,000 PCs to be migrated this year, the region's CIO Theodomir Cayetano announced on 18 April. Extremadura estimates that the move to open source will help save 30 million euro per year. Extremadura in 2012 completed the inventory of all the software applications and computers used by its civil servants. It also tailored a Linux distribution, Sysgobex, to meet the majority of requirements of government tasks. It has already migrated to open source some 150 PCs at several ministries, including those for Development, Culture and Employment."
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Spain's Extremadura Starts Move To GNU/Linux, Open Source

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  • by Pirulo (621010) on Tuesday April 30, 2013 @12:08AM (#43587471)
    ...to realize the obvious
    • by Voline (207517)
      This has been in the works long [theregister.co.uk], long [wired.com] before the crisis caused by the financial industry catastrophe of 2008.
    • This is old news - in these pages itself, the first time they started on it was 2006 [slashdot.org], and last year, too, there was another story [slashdot.org] on their experiment here. Extremadura, Munich and Portugal happen to be pretty unique/ahead in this regard - do a search on their stories over this experiment. As long as they are doing it for long term independence from software vendors, they're on the right track - as opposed to doing it due to their 'zero budgets', since they've obviously not factored in costs of training an

      • by miknix (1047580) on Tuesday April 30, 2013 @05:22AM (#43588575) Homepage

        This is old news - in these pages itself, the first time they started on it was 2006 [slashdot.org], and last year, too, there was another story [slashdot.org] on their experiment here. Extremadura, Munich and Portugal happen to be pretty unique/ahead in this regard - do a search on their stories over this experiment.

        Except the current Portuguese government decided to start replacing some of the machines running GNU/Linux with Windows. There were even some problems in the transition of the government website infrastructure, because the new Microsoft solution could not serve as much client requests as the previous Linux-based one, leading to a massive downtime which lasted weeks [1].

        I don't want to speculate but most probably the new team assigned to manage the government website did only have knowledge on Microsoft technologies, so the old previous system had to go.... This is a shame because they did it during an Economical crisis, wasting money on Windows server license keys and all other associated costs which they did not have before (since it was already running Linux).

        [1] http://exameinformatica.sapo.pt/web/exameinformatica/noticias/internet/2012-04-04-sistema-de-redundancia-do-portal-do-governo-nao-funcionou;jsessionid=7AE120CAF45F6309EC0DB51D0D8E70D5 [exameinformatica.sapo.pt]

        • by Darinbob (1142669)

          This idea of "we only know Windows" is probably a big reason Windows keeps surviving. I see this in IT departments all the time where everyone wants to hire replaceable units (ie, employees that are easily replaced with cheaper models). A small company starts out with a flexible IT team, but then over time as the company grows the IT staff grows also and also changes personality, ending up as a Microsoft advocacy group. SharePoint servers start popping up, the number of IT members who can fix the linux o

    • Actually Extremadura did not need the crisis for this. It has had its own distro since about 2001 (called Linex). It was one of the first state sponsored distros out there. I don't know what the state of the migration was, but it is not a new initiative. They do seem to have created a new distro though. I'll have to see how it differs from Linex. It's probably more about completing the migration that had started some time back and would have been delayed by some leftover compatibility issues.

      The crisis cert

    • Actually Extremadura did not need the crisis for this specific endeavour. Maybe only to complete the migration. Extremadura has had its own distro since the early 2000s (called Linex). It was one of the first state sponsored distros out there. I don't know what the state of the migration was before this latest push, but it is certainly not a new initiative. They do seem to have created a new distro though. I'll have to see how it differs from Linex.

      The crisis certainly did provide an additional motivation t

  • web applications (Score:5, Insightful)

    by johnjones (14274) on Tuesday April 30, 2013 @12:12AM (#43587479) Homepage Journal

    Thats nice I still don't understand why my tax's are spent on OS license only for the users to login to web applications

    Linux supports kerberos so authentication is not a problem its down to choices and management

    what would be interesting would be what applications they need to run... is there a list somewhere ?

    regards

    John Jones

  • I blame... (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 30, 2013 @12:17AM (#43587503)
    ... Ballmer: he stopped putting money into getting the facts campaigns. Without them, how else can an autonomous region survive?
  • by MichaelSmith (789609) on Tuesday April 30, 2013 @12:29AM (#43587525) Homepage Journal

    With so much stuff running remotely through web interfaces, operating systems matter very little.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ElberethZone (1136393)
      Not like my 80 millions € SOA project were they had the "clever" idea to create a .Net front-end to the web-services instead of a web-application... The worst thing in this case is that they needed to have the front-end available to third parties which cannot run .Net. Their solution: Citrix remote access... :( Architecture at his best.
  • I thought we were post-PC! Where are the tablets that are supposedly taking over the world?

  • Yet another Linux distro.

    • Indeed, why do the governments often roll their own distro? One could think that RHEL or Ubuntu (customized with your own packages if necessary) would do the trick.
      • by unixisc (2429386)

        So that they control their own destiny. Rather than pay gobs of money to RHEL or Canonical, they could hire their own (preferably local) software developers (thereby providing jobs, which is a big vote getter) and have them do exactly what they need from their own IT. In case of mainland Europe, localization would be a big plus, and then other customized applications that the governments would need, they could pay those people to write. Yeah, they could do that on Windows as well, but the moment Microso

  • Ahhh, pushed a wrong moderation button. Need to post to undo it.
  • At what point in history did the commercial software to run a PC start costing 3-5 times the cost of the physical PC?

    And just at the right point .. where the software is too expensive, the interface is busted and the stability is screwed .. Ubuntu launched Unity! That shit is seriously going to take over the world man. Every man and his dog is going to be using a tablet with Unity on it! And telephones too, there's nothing more satisfying than taking a swipe at your telephone .. trust me, I've seen the s
    • And just at the right point .. where the software is too expensive, the interface is busted and the stability is screwed .. Ubuntu launched Unity!

      Unity can be fixed: sudo apt-get install xubuntu-desktop

  • Just a quick search suggests that SysGobEx is actually the strategic plan to implement opensource in government. Extremadura actually had sponsored a linux distro called Linex (still being maintained as per distrowatch) back in the early 2000s. I think the headline submission text needs a revision.

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