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Compaq to bundle Linux and provide support 128

Posted by sengan
from the linux-hits-big dept.
emptybody was the first of you to write in with this PC Week story that Compaq is about to ship RedHat 5.2 bundled on some of its servers, and provide 24-by-7 support for them. This apparently will save time for them, since they currently pre-load Linux by hand. If this is becoming a problem, it suggests demand for Linux Servers is increasing. Gateway also expects to deliver such servers by the end of the year. Kim Brown, an analyst at Dataquest Inc, says this means Compaq is walking away from SCO, and that Linux is starting to be acknowledged as the low-end Unix alternative.
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Compaq to bundle Linux and provide support

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  • It's sort of like cameras. You can go to Walmart to buy a camera, or you can go to a camera store. If you want just a plain vanilla camera, or you already know exactly what you want and it's at Walmart, you go to Walmart. But you buy what they have on the shelf -- they won't special-order anything for you, or let you mix and match stuff. If you want a good professional-quality outfit, you go to your local camera shop, because the people there know their cameras (unlike the droids at Walmart). There you can get exactly the camera you want, even if it's not in stock at the moment.

    Compaq is the Walmart of Linux computers, while folks like VA Research and Linux Hardware Solutions are the knowledgable specialists (the camera shop of Linux computers). (Though I get a chuckle over the rest of the thread about people's troubles with VA Research :-). A LHS or VAR is never going to be as big as Walmart (or Compaq), but it is still a very profitable and useful market niche. Walmart has not driven the local camera shop out of business, and it's unlikely that Compaq is going to drive the local Linux shop out of business.

    BTW, Debian, Mindspring, and LHS are about to release a press release about the new Debian FTP server. VA Research isn't the *only* company that gives to Open Source.

    -- Eric
  • While I enjoy reading horror stories about VA Research bunging (see my URL for why :-), I have to point out that s**t happens. Orders can be delayed because of supply problems (for example, at the end of December you COULD NOT GET a Pentium II 350 or a 9gb Seagate Cheetah, period, unless you were Compaq or IBM). Orders can be bungled because the sales guy keeps rushing back to the build area and shouting "Get order #XYZ out, he's called AGAIN!" and a rushed tech accidentally skips a checksheet item. Or it may be that you ordered a combination that the guy who built your computer hates. For example, I *hate* dual-boot machines. Windows 98 is a pain in the a** to install, and a waste of valuable disk space (grin). So if I'm rushed, I might not QA the Win98 the way I should and a driver might not get loaded for something in Win98 (but you better believe that the Linux stuff is going to be right!). It happens, though not often.

    Anyhow, the point is that s**t happens, regardless of the vendor, and the difference between a bad vendor and a good vendor is what happens once all h**l breaks loose. Or even all heck -- e.g., a very large server we shipped out with a token ring card didn't token ring very well (we'd warned this customer, a major bank with a single-digit address on Wall Street, that we had no way of testing a token ring card because we don't have a token ring network handy, all we could do was make sure it was recognized by the driver). So we worked with them until it was fixed, trying different kernel versions and trying patched drivers from the author of the token ring driver to try to figure out why it was Oopsing. The final solution was a different model token ring card, which we shipped to them overnight once I decided that was the solution.

    I'm not going to comment any further on this issue, because of an obvious conflict of interest (grin).

    -- Eric
  • The problem on the client side is that margins are so slim. It takes about 2 man-hours of labor to build, test, and box a low-end IDE machine. (Yes, I've done time and motion studies on the subject, that's my job). The end result is maybe $100 profit. You have to sell a LOT of $100 profits to justify a technician's $25K/year salary or a systems specialist's $40K/year salary (note: These are North Carolina salaries, Silicon Valley salaries would be roughly double the above due to the higher rents and cost of living out there).

    VA Research is addressing this by re-badging a Taiwanese import (we still build our own at LHS, but we have a lower-cost labor supply in North Carolina than VAR has in the Silicon Valley), but this still doesn't address the chicken-and-egg problem: you're not making enough money from client-side Linux to justify spending money on marketing it, but without pushing product through the channel you never WILL make money on it. Yet without making money on it you can't afford to take ad money away from pushing your servers and spend it all in PC Week or Computer Shopper pushing desktops... then you lose your server market (where both VAR and LHS can undercut Compaq handily on similar computers).

    The answer, I guess, would be venture capital, and massive amounts of it, properly applied. We'll have to see whether it'll be one of the existing Linux hardware companies that does it, or a newcomer.

    -- Eric
  • I keep fussing at them and they keep ignoring me when I point out the things that need to be done to make SuSE Linux enterprise-ready.

    Example: /etc is supposed to contain all configuration information. Well, in SuSE Linux it doesn't. For some weird reason they stuck their startup script configuration info in /sbin. For some weird reason they stuck their "X" server link in /var/lib/X11. Etc. The problem is that I can't go tracing down configuration information to be backed up all over God's creation. That's what /etc was invented for. But SuSE says that the "X" server link is an executable and thus does not belong in /etc. ARGH!

    Red Hat Linux has its quality problems, but I have administered it in large-scale enterprise deployments and can attest that it scales quite well because of a number of pleasant design decisions, such as the /etc/cron.daily (etc.) directories, which allow me to 'ssh' out a cron job to be added to the crontab of the entire network with one command rather than having to edit an /etc/crontab on hundreds of machines, and /etc/profile.d, which allows me to add startup tasks to users without having to edit the global /etc/profile script on hundreds of machines. Then there is the fact that with Red Hat Linux, I know that if I back up /etc, /usr/local, and /home I can restore the entire system. With SuSE, configuration info is so scattered that you have to backup the entire system -- period.

    Don't get me wrong, I've run SuSE and like it, but they have to be the most STUBBORN people I've ever encountered. I've been ragging them about this since SuSE 5.1 days, and still nada.

    -- Eric
  • We have a new laptop line, but not in the $1500 price point range. We can do you a very nice one with a 15.1" LCD display and 6gb hard drive with 128mb of memory for around $2500. With Linux. And you aren't paying for Windows 98 as part of that either -- we get'em from the manufacturer without any OS.

    They're kinda big and heavy, they're not fancy, and that Mobile PII sucks power, but they work quite well.

    The problem with the $1500 price point is that we'd end up supporting two different lines of laptops -- a low end line, and a high-end line. And most people interested in Linux laptops would be most interested in that $2500 laptop. Due to the low margin on a $1500 laptop we'd have to sell a couple dozen of them just to make back the cost of adding it to our lineup, much less the ongoing support costs. I'm not sure it'd sell well enough to make back that cost.

    Regarding traditional channels: We already advertise on Slashdot (for which we donated a 9gb Cheetah, BTW), Linux Journal, Linux Today (we were their first advertiser!), etc. The problem is that these channels are geared towards current Linux users, who are predominantly either hobbiests or server users. The hobby users don't buy machines -- they build their own from parts. The server users aren't generally in low-end IDE workstations in mass quantities. This means using different channels for moving mass quantities of low-end IDE workstations, especially if you want to address the consumer market. Linux Journal doesn't address that market. Mainstream publications do. But, as I mentioned, you have a chicken/egg problem there. I don't know if any vendor is going to go there (I don't make those kinds of business decisions for LHS and I know about as much as you do about VA Research), but so it goes.

    -- Eric
  • Posted by gruv:

    Well I never had anything against Compaq until about three days ago. Our IT dept. has two Compaq server boxes sitting in the machine room. Now Im no networking expert, but I soon realized how much we trust these two boxes to keep the backbone going in our Intranet.

    I've estimated the loss of man hours in the last three days to be about 17 hours split between two shifts. This is due to a busted Compaq box. About half our Intranet was hosed and we lost about two days of data. Needless to say, some serious ass-chewin' was going on in IT. Now the problem got fixed today, but that hardly impressed me. All of the other equipment works flawlessly. And I hear from around the campfire that Compaq wasn't exaclty prompt in deleivery of a replacement. So thumbs down for Compaq on that one.

    We also deploy some Compaq boxes in some In-Store listening stations w/ touch screens. I saw one of them opened up one day last week. I didn't think nothing of it until this other incident. I found out that quite afew of these boxes had to be either replaced or repaired. Doesn't sound good to me.

    I saw that Compaq had the two highest selling boxes in the first part of this month. Hmm, I won't be one of those people. I've had enough of problems with Compaq. I even have talked to other computer users I know and they all have nothing but negative things to say about Compaq. A few of them backed Compaq up saying some of the older stuff works well. But all in all I'll stay away from them. And I've seen some of those case designs, very grotesque.

    RedHat. Well I haven't compiled Linux yet. But I've seen the headaches it has given a couple of my freinds. I learn from those around me alot. One of them tried Debian and liked it. And judging by all this hype for RedHat...it's cursed, Murphy's law.
  • Hmm... Now to get out a shotgun and start pumping some lead under bridges. :)
  • I for one won't miss them.

    SCO UnixWare7 is the most broken piece of shit I've ever worked with in my entire life. It's worse than Windows 95.

    I hope those bastards starve -- not only do they sell broken OSes and release broken software, even their friggin' compiler is a piece of junk so you can't fix anything!

    Santa Cruz is a nice town, it's about time it stopped having its name dragged through the mud by SCO, anyways. Rat bastards probably delayed Linux's acceptance by a year or two, as well.
  • Maybe, but does Debian use RPM? Face it RPM is going to become the standard Linux package format, which I think is a good thing. What really needs to happen is a merger between the RedHat and Debian package formats which retains compatibity with both.
  • Wow, I am really sorry to hear this (I work for VA). If you'd like to discuss how we can "make good" by you, please call me (or anyone can for that matter) at 650-934-3666 x 108


    Chris DiBona



  • Hi Eric,


    Actualyl we never rebadged umax, we just used thier cases, we are no longer affiliated with umax. In fact, we have recieved equity funding from sequoia capital. (funded yahoo, cisco, etc)


    Say hi to kit, and see you guys in march.



    Chris DiBOna
    (VA Research)

  • Compaq is expected to make more Unix news next month when it renames Digital Unix to Tru64Unix, according to sources.

    Am I the only one who thinks this is a lousy name? It sounds like a marketing whiz kid's brainfart.

    I'm not that fond of Digital Unix as an OS. But I has some nice features and a decent sounding name. I would be embarrased to put Tru64Unix on my resume.

  • Well, to give credit where credit is due, Eunice (unix for VMS) is probably the worst name for a Unix and arguably the worst Unix.

    It warrants its own entry in Perl's Configure script.

    Congratulations. You aren't running Eunice.
  • If you read Hellen Cutler's book on the insides of NT, you'll find out it was heavily influenced by VMS design. That's partially why Unix is such a bad word at Microsoft, and the coders are so rabiddly for NT: they want to beat Unix that beat their original VMS.
  • Believe it or not, an ungodly amount of companies still use VMS -- and buy new machines & upgrade their existing ones. It's pretty much a cash-cow.

    Oh, for what it's worth: apparently we (Boston University) have the full source -- on microfiche.

    --

  • >oops I slipped and put it in an anonymous ftp

    What, the microfiche? It's not special machine-readable microfiche or anything!


    --

  • Where I could see Compaq doing some good (and having fun doing it) would be to say "we'll build you a Beowulf Linux supercomputing cluster, from start to finish, using our superduper Proliants" and so on.
  • Yes, it was pretty impressive when i found
    most SuSE installation/configuration tools come
    without source...

    Also, SuSE insisted on putting interface routes
    into /etc/route to be applied on startup each
    time you changed the configuration in Yast.
    A big NO-NO for internet routers :)

    (That was a real `wow, impressive` effect)
  • I don't see a problem with either the original sentence, or the rewritten version.

    However, there seems to be a hole in the chain from article to summary. The time savings is for a network administrator that was quoted, not for Compaq. But I do think your conclusion is still valid: that demand for Linux is increasing.

    Naturally, we all like to hear that. :)
  • Since Compaq seems intent on letting VMS die, I think it would be a shame (especially for those who still use VMS) to let the codebase die.

    COMPAQ, this move would give you great PR within the Open Source community and would cost you little. In fact, while you're at it why not free up RT-11, RSTS/E, and RSX? Who uses that stuff anymore but dedicated hobbyists?

    Think about their historical value.

    J. Maynard Gelinas
  • Obviously YMMV, but I had a great experience with the company. They took a tremendous amount of hassling from me getting quote after quote, were always courteous, and handled a special case order where my company needed RedHat 4.2 instead of RH-5.2. And since the box was SMP they even compiled a kernel to support the hardware and provided instructions for getting it up. I really can't give them higher marks!

    And to pay them back we ordered only one machine VA and chose a (brain dead) local vendor for about 50 other machines. ARRRGH! Of course the local guy is cheaper (this choice is not management's fault or only concern however, I'm well to blame because of time pressures during the qote exchange phase), but I payed for that by having to give these locals plenty of tech support. I spent a good while explaining to them why a glibc X server won't run on RedHat 4.2 and why rpm --nodeps isn't always the right solution to a dependency problem for example. Feh.

    VAResearch was a breath of fresh air and I hope to buy from them again.
  • Here are some URLs to FAQs which contain specific information on OpenVMS, the VAX and Alpha AXP architecture line, and finally the older PDP-11 line and it's Operating systems RSTS-E, RSX, and RT-11. A Vax-11/750 might disapoint you for sheer computing power compared with todays processors - it's not much faster than a 16mhz 386, but it had a great backplane, powerful peripherals, it could handle huge memory spaces (up to 4MB of RAM in 1977!), and could support 50 (or so) simultaneous users.

    VMS Specific FAQs:
    http://www.cis.ohio-state.edu/hypertext/faq/bngu senet/comp/os/vms/top.html

    http://www.montagar.com/dfwlug/openvms-faq.html

    http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/Lakes/295 6/faq1.htm

    The PDP-11 was the first low cost 'desk-side' computer available. Introduced in 1970 with a wire wrapped backplane, 8K words of CORE (that's 16K bytes of wire mesh RAM hand weaved for those who don't know), and a CPU made of discrete components, by 1974 a PDP-11/03 could be had for something like 50K which contained 64K of RAM, a VT-52 video terminal, RX01 8" Floppy drives, and RK05 or RL02 removeable pack disk drives (between 2.5MB to 5MB per pack). These machines usually ran RT-11, a Real Time operating system very similar to DOS (except done properly). By Real Time, what they mean is that it's not much more than a program loader - applications get Real Time access to the CPU. These machines were usually bought by scientists for cheap automated data collection or by factories for automated assembly on a production line.

    The PDP-11 could also be used for larger multiuser systems, supporting up to 22 bits of address space with an MMU (some backplanes only supported up to 18 bits). Accessing memory beyond 64K thus meant setting offset page registers to move around. In those days memory management meant finding ways to move around a larger address space than directly addressable by the CPU. Today 32 bit CPU's address 4GB while 64 bits work out to 4TB of address lines. Now memory management refers to using virtual memory to readdress linear physical RAM to various address ranges doled out by the OS kernel and 'owned' by individual processes.

    In the larger configuration the PDP-11 made for an excellent multiuser system. An 11/44 or 11/34 with 768K of RAM migh run RSTS/E - a multitasking, multiuser Operating System which used BASIC as it's primary interface (I'm certain this is why BASIC in ROM because popular in late 70's micros like the TRS-80, Apple II and Commodore PET 2000 computers). RSX provided a similar interface to RT-11 (as a program loader) but was a multiuser OS. A machine like this could easily handle 16 - 20 simultaneous users while providing a large array of tools, compilers, and I/O devices.

    Of course, there was also UNIX available. Check out the UNIX Preservation Society and download a PDP-11 emulator along with a copy of V7 UNIX! You can even buy a source license to V7 UNIX for $100 bucks from SCO! And this is REALLY important because SCO has recognized the historical value of ancient UNIX sources and acted in time preserve history. Compaq should do the same! Time is running out!

    COMPAQ, please give out source and binary licenses for ancient operating systems like RT-11, RSTS/E and RSX if only because some people still use these systems and cannot purchase support or maintanance from Digital any longer!

    And if you open up OpenVMS by giving away source you stand a good chance at revitalizing the VMS community and reducing your overall support costs for an OS you obviously plan on mkaing obsolete. There are plenty of free UNIX systems now available, we could all use a free alternative operating environment and VMS is certainly a credible alternative to UNIX. If you free the source, hackers will come to fix it up and port it to new platforms - and you won't have to spend a dime.

    PDP-11 FAQs:

    http://www.village.org/pdp-11/faq.htm

    Sunsite PDP-11 support page:
    http://metalab.unc.edu/pub/academic/computer-sci ence/history/pdp-11/

    Great photographs of old systems!
    http://www.telnet.hu/hamster/pdp-11/

    PDP-11 on UNIX preservation society
    http://minnie.cs.adfa.oz.au/PUPS/

  • Or a strong coffee :-)

  • Hmm, as I recall, in the DOJ trials, a letter that was written to the DOJ from Compaq came out (or something like that), which suggested that they were displeased with the fact that since their relationship had soured a bit with Microsoft, they were being charged significantly more than other vendors like Dell were. In fact, some resellers were even charged up to $95 for Windows 95, instead of the $50 that Microsoft claims they charged.

    At any rate, Compaq is probably the first to do this because they're getting shafted by MS as compared to the other OEM's.
  • Are there any websites where I can learn more about VMS? (I don't have access to a university-caliber library that would have books covering VMS)
  • *Yawn* - yet more NT-Microsoft-invented-the-GUI-Linux-is-all-command -line-tripe.

    Uhm...there's a few software packages for NT, and some Graphical Interfaces to services under NT that are neat - but that's all they are - They'll all become available under Linux as we grow, otherwise, nothing very fancy about 'em.

    Nice attempt at flamebait - but here's where you blew it: MOST flamebait will contain factual remarks - designed to infuriate its victims into terse, ill-written replies. There's still a lot of things Linux is lacking in - and I wish I were a coder so I could help fill in the void - I can't.

    There's *nothing* factual about your remarks, insofar as your attempt to present NT as something more advanced than Linux. It isn't - never has been, and never likely will be. Most or all of what you described above IS available in Linux.

    buh-bye now...
  • At any rate, Compaq is probably the first to do this because they're getting shafted by MS as compared to the other OEM's.

    That, and because they have the most to gain from Linux - they can use it to push the Alpha, thus not only getting out from under MS a bit, but also shaking a little of the Intel monkey off their back, too.
  • There's a couple obvious counter-arguments.
    1. If you don't like RedHat's product, don't use it :) Feel free to complain about it, provided you're willing to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.
    2. If you want to try and take an active hand in improving the quality of RedHat releases, fax them your resume' and try to get employed.
  • The the girl on the other end of the phone says they dont install Linux, you have to do it yourself or get a reseller that does.. Oh, I'm asking about the AlphaServer..

    Well, I said thanx, I go and get an Alpha machine (not Compaq) instead.. Too bad.. They have just lost a customer. I've got support and a pre-installed machine from someone who know Linux well..

    :wq

  • Don't worry!
    RedHat is strong only in US. In Europe and in Japan there are some other guys.

  • It is because of companies like Red Hat that Corporations and PC makers are adopting Linux. They like RedHat because it is easy to install, admin and most importantly, because it *WORKS*.

    While other distributions are great for hacking, companies don't make money or derive joy by playing around with computers, they must be productive to be successful.

    Let's remember that.
  • Makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside about those brand new Proliants sitting on my racks. They're doing a wonderful job of running things under Linux, and I'm glad to see Compaq moving in the directions shown in the article.

    The Proliant 1600R/400 runs RedHat remarkably well right out of the box. I was very happy about that. Now they're going to be offering support as well? I like.

    Three cheers for Compaq. :)

  • Working on Compaqs makes me want to vomit.

    They're ugly, fussy, and damned near impossible to upgrade unless you purchase everything from Compaq. I now refuse to work on them. If someone brings one to me I'll tell them to bring somewhere else, because I don't need that headache.

  • Got ear wax in your eyes or something? Brain fogged by anti-sengan hostility?

    --
  • while they -king of all hypocrites- shipped the same desktop they were fighting in the US (moral!) in central Europe.

    I believe it turned out to be a European distributor who was adding KDE to Red Hat.

    You accuse Red Hat of vaporware, yet I see no facts in your own arguments, own innuendo and rumour. How about some solid facts to back up your FUD? Otherwise you just look ugly yourself.

    --
  • University libraries often have some good books on the history of computers and operating systems... as well as some crunchy unix books ;)
  • I have to laugh at this one. My company has replaced over 190 NT servers with Linux. The power and functionality is unmatched. Could you please show me how to administer a disk quota in NT? HAHAHA or administer a MPI or PVM cluster? hahaha
    Could you show me how to lock down the desktop so that a windows user can't type a del tree command? HAHAHA
    How about that NT5.0 (sorry... I mean windoze-2000 management console.??) what a joke! LinuxConf blows it away! Please get out of puberty, then talk to us....
    By the way, were set to replace 3,250 NT/Windows Boxes with Linux for an international engineering company... so bite on that! Oh by the way...WANG Global has just signed a contract with Corel Computer for 15,000 Units....
    NT? keep dreaming....

    Thanks, I needed a good laugh.

    Nick
    LSG


  • One of these days I gonna break down and up the threshold so I don't have to watch ACs like you publicly defecate on this forum.


    As for your "points":
    1) Red Hat took the initiative on glibc. I guarantee that _every_ distribution of Linux benefitted from Redhat's mistakes by not repeating them. Glibc is a _very_ important upgrade and distributions that are just getting it now (SuSe) or are not approaching it at all ( Slackware ) are the ones promoting binary incompatibility, not Red Hat.

    2)As for the "broken" compiler mix, its better to ship a better standards compliant C++ compiler (egcs) than it is too keep one as sadly broken as g++ 2.7.2 ( or 2.8.1 ). I appluad Red Hat for making the developer come first. I disapprove,however, of thier handling of it.

    3) As for the whole "desktop wars" thing, it was the right thing to do. KDE's QT (at the time) was nothing more than a "Quick and Dirty" fix to the problem. Its reliance on non-free software made it incompatible with Red Hat (and Debian ) policy. I do think Red Hat should of put it on the commercial version, since that isn't pure anyway. Anyway, this isn't a problem now ( the entire KDE system becomes free when QT 2.0 is released,and Red Hat should make it an option upon install). So quit bitching.

    As for your signs of "Microsofts of Linux", I'd be much more worried about SuSe. RMS, the vocal conscience of free software ( as much as we'd like to not admit it) described them as "the worst" of the distributors (wrt to freeness). I don't keep up with SuSe, but RMS wouldn't have described them as that unless he had damn good reason. I worry much more on reliance of proprietary software than with distribution bugs that can be fixed by reading errata and following the easy directions.
    At least I know that RedHat audits their distribution throughly to find those bugs in the first place.

    Elaborate on the "fights between distributors". I haven't seen Red Hat fighting with anyone. Have you been watching FUDAVISION again,AC?

    Now begone!
  • VA Research bungled my order from beginning to end. I became enraged with the incompetence they demonstrated for such a small company. To be specific, my computer was late (very late) and misconfigured. They took longer than I would expect even the most incompetent supplier would take.
  • Its been a long time coming, but SCO is truly on the verge of going out.
  • But SuSE says that the "X" server link is an executable and thus does not belong in /etc. ARGH!

    And they're right about it. Executable files don't belong into /etc. If at all, it's a X problem.

    As for the rest, they've apparently changed a couple of things for 6.0. Let's see.

    Anyway, for home users, SuSE is still way better than RedHat.
  • by chexc (9687)
    If apple don't follow Compaqs lead NOW they'll be left behind
  • yeah, Digital Unix sounds good, and actually has a good reputation of being a stable, high-end Unix. now, Tru64Unix, what the hell is that for a fugly name? it sounds like the kind of cheesy names soundcards or game consoles get.
  • isn't SuSE the one that mixes non-free stuff deep inside the system, starting with its own install tool?

    I may be wrong, and I've never used SuSE myself, but I don't think RedHat is anywhere as bad as some people say around here. There are many things I change when I install a new system, sure, but I haven't had any major problems with RedHat as a Linux distribution.

    I've installed Debians too, and I'd say they're about as good, but in different places; Debian's installation isn't as neat as RedHat's, but the package selection is more comprehensive.

  • The second most popular distro is debian. .debs will last as long as debian users keep using it. Debian is not going away. Saying "RPM is the future" is not a basis for arguing RPMs are better. Red Hat users that switch to debian fall in love. I'm one of them.
  • I got apt-get for Debian 2.0 (Hamm) from the
    upgrade-i386 directory of 2.1. The front-end to it
    is not yet ready, but it works in very well with
    dselect, and I have been very impressed. I found
    it very annoying in Red Hat when upon downloading
    and rpm you try to install it and then have to get
    a load of other rpm's to satisfy dependancies
    manually. Debian solves this problem beautifully.
  • RedHat can't have the same power that MS does now. Remember, anyone can burn their own RedHat CD and distribute it. To my knowlege, everything in RedHat is OSS (they even hire full time developers to write OSS). Instead, we should keep a close eye on RedHat, if they begin to make RedHat proprietary (ie they start shipping non-OSS with RedHat Linux) we need to take what OSS has already been developed and continue with an OSS version - a kind of OSS policing by the Linux community.

  • that MS has become so powerful and rich mainly because of the Win32 API and because of its pricing scheme. Microsoft has used its closed API to make alliances with other companies and the Win32 API has also prevented many applications from easily being ported to other OS's. MS has also used the price of its OS to ensure that VAR's only sold its OS.

    RedHat on the other hand is using an open source kernel that will always be open, and so RedHat can't put nasty little hooks in the kernel to control who's software runs best, its a level ground for everyone. Also, because RedHat can be distributed freely, RedHat cannot bully companies around.

  • It would be a better idea to offer it on all the computers, as everyone in my family (including an 8-year old kid) uses Linux for everything.
  • So, RH and linux have the jazz right now. RH in particular (though others are also) is developing support channels. Big trad. companies like that. As more people get introduced to OSS, through RH, SuSE, or whatever else, the entire OSS community benefits.
    This whole mindset of "linux/redhat/anybody is gaining success, we must revile them as much as we hate MS is a bit counterproductive.
  • I agree that there is more nd more FUD being spread by MS types (and Apple types for that matter), but I see a serious cannibalistic trend among some in the OSS community.
    It's like the old deal with punk bands that got successful, everyone raged at ''em for "selling out". I just think it's a shame that there is a group that seems to want it all to stay marginal and underground, or are too myopic to see any sucess for a part of OSS translates into a success for the whole of it.
    just my$.02, for what it's worth. That and a buck will get you a cup'o'coffe.
  • I already lost all respect for compaq due to the fact that their support always tries to push the problem onto someone else, I can't wait to see them try to handle Linux support "hold on .. ok there is a guy who is in the documentation who wrote this program in 1982, you should email him with this issue."

    Compaq is pretty sad now'a days.. GO IBM!
  • Does this mean they will add the RedHat disks to the pack of CDs you get with a Compaq? If so this is wonderful.

    For those who don't use Compaq ProLiants, they come with CDs for most systems. You can't install them without licence information. If you call up and pay for the one you want by credit card, they give you the licence details and you install it.

    Now there will be one CD in that pack that installs without any payment. Which one are lots of people going to choose?
  • Here's an SCO official comment on Linux:

    "Over the past months competition from companies
    selling versions of the Linux Operating System
    has increased."

    SCO 1998 10-K
    http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/85156 0/0000891618-98-005461.txt

    You can also read up on how much money they lose each year.
  • I confess! I admit it! Blue is my favorite
    color ... I love coming in the morning to find
    out I'm going to have another "blue screen day!"
  • Historical Value?? I worked at a company that still used pdp11-73 as their main systems and this was only 2 years ago!!!! Knowing the owner (a dead ringer for PHB) they are most likely still using the garbage. (I lasted five months before I found a new job at a 20% pay increase).
  • What it seem to be is that many of the computer manufacturing companies are becoming afraid of they will miss out on the sales of servers and workstations if they don't come around. Wouldn't you if you saw the whole world changing over to another OS that is STABLE, POWERFULL, and being used world wide.
  • Dell, are you paying attention?
  • It wont be long until linux goes the way of UNIX.
    Just like AIX, SCO,Sun, Dgital, we will have a dozen different distributions, how long will it be before we have binary incompatability? Red Hat ships glibc,Slackware doesnt, if you look at alot of different software, CodeForge IDE for example, they ship two different versions, one for glibc and one for libc, most.
    Linux obviously needs some standards to succeed in the corporate world, but who says RedHat has to set them.
  • VMS is dying of natural causes. Compaq would be foolish to open source it however as there are still some valuable gems in it that need to be leveraged onto other platforms.

    Like it or not, VMS clusters in 1984 were way ahead of any Unix clusters of today (a full 15 years later).

    Don't get me wrong, I love Linux. In fact, Compaq's recent announcements to increase their support for Linux makes me want to buy stock. This is a good thing.

    It is also a good thing that Compaq announced that they are actively integrated some of the VMS cluster technology into their Unix offering (and not just the NT world). This is good for Unix too.
  • Those are some great links, thanks for sharing them.

    For your historical pleasure, here is an advertisement for Unix from a 1981 issue of Datamation:

    http://cprjbv.ne.mediaone.net/www/unix1.jpg

Today's scientific question is: What in the world is electricity? And where does it go after it leaves the toaster? -- Dave Barry, "What is Electricity?"

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