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Linux Business Businesses IBM Novell Red Hat Software

IBM Pushing Microsoft-Free Desktops 417

walterbyrd and other readers are sending along the news that IBM is partnering worldwide with Canonical/Ubuntu, Novell, and Red Hat to offer Windows-free desktop PCs pre-loaded with Lotus software and ready for customizing by local ISVs for particular markets. The head of IBM's Lotus division is quoted: "The slow adoption of Vista among businesses and budget-conscious CIOs, coupled with the proven success of a new type of Microsoft-free PC in every region, provides an extraordinary window of opportunity for Linux." One example of the cooperation: "Canonical, which sells subscription support for Ubuntu, a Linux operating system that scores high marks on usability and 'the cool factor,' will re-distribute Lotus Symphony via their repositories. Symphony 1.1 will be available through the Ubuntu repositories by the end of August."
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IBM Pushing Microsoft-Free Desktops

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  • Working link (Score:5, Informative)

    by symbolset ( 646467 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:53PM (#24489049) Journal
  • Woo Hoo! (Score:4, Informative)

    by clang_jangle ( 975789 ) * on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @07:54PM (#24489067) Journal
    The link in TFS didn't work for me (they may have fixed it by now), but here's the marketwatch article [] and BigBlue's press release [].
    Oh, and uh, WOOHOOOOOOOO!!!!!
  • Re:Perfect example (Score:2, Informative)

    by Apple Acolyte ( 517892 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:16PM (#24489333)
    Uh, if you didn't know, Standard Oil became Exxon Mobile (XOM), and I don't think they're doing too badly. . . .
  • Re:Nine To Five (Score:2, Informative)

    by flerchin ( 179012 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:22PM (#24489395)

    Hardy with Compiz and advanced desktop effects is pretty damned cool. I'm getting converts daily on my university campus just from fellow geeks saying "What is that!?"

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:25PM (#24489423)

    Server Support was $881!! THAT IS MORE THAN W2K3!

    They don't charge support on a per server basis(this may be a shock to you)
    You can set up as many servers on your network as you like, they still only charge you $881

    For an enterprise Class network you need a DNS server, AD server, File server, a mail server, database server, web server( bother internet and intranet).

    There are many more to add to the list, but those are just the basics.

  • Re:Great... (Score:4, Informative)

    by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:29PM (#24489485) Journal

    Copy that. But you don't actually have to use Notes. Make sure the back end is Domino on Linux, and then just use the box for something else...

  • by bluefoxlucid ( 723572 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @08:30PM (#24489503) Homepage Journal

    $881 for a year of server support, versus $500 per seat for Windows 2003 Server licenses and a year of rolled-in support, plus several thousand more to renew support, plus more if you add more servers.

  • by Paradigm_Complex ( 968558 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:38PM (#24490275)
    You probably won't need books or irc. Linux is getting pretty accessible these days. The best thing is to have a buddy who is already comfortable with Linux. Lacking that, I'd recommend taking a look at the very noob-friendly Ubuntu forums [] and Ubuntu wiki []. You should probably start by toying around with a virtual machine in windows, where you won't have to worry about things like drivers. You could also try playing around with a live boot CD.

    After that you can take the plunge and install Ubuntu to the bare metal. In case something (eg: wifi) doesn't work, it's a good idea to have a laptop with internet access and a USB flash drive at hand when you start. Also make extra careful special sure you don't kill your mission critical Windows partition. Not yet anyways :D I got another old hard drive for Linux while I was still getting used to it, and disabled the Windows hard drive whenever I was going to do something maybe possibly risky.

    Don't expect everything to go super smooth - there will be some hang up somewhere. Even if it's more user friendly than Windows, it's different, and there is stuff to learn.
  • Huh? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:45PM (#24490355)

    I'm not in the Research Division and I'm using Linux exclusively. IBM internally even has a full stack based on RHEL5.2.

    Sure, no workstation I have received was preloaded linux, but all the pages point to the place to download the Linux equivalent to the Windows preload.

  • Re:Perfect example (Score:3, Informative)

    by osu-neko ( 2604 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @09:50PM (#24490393)

    Standard Oil was renamed to "Exxon", and recently posted the largest annual profits of ANY company, EVER.

    Nope. Around here, all the Standard Oil stations were renamed Amoco, and later renamed BP. The company that was Standard Oil was ripped apart year ago. Parts of it went to Esso/Exxon, parts to Mobile (the two later merged into ExxonMobile), parts to Amoco (later absorbed by BP), parts to Chevron, parts to Texaco (Chevron and Texaco later merged into ChevronTexaco, then dropped Texaco from the name), parts to Conoco (now ConocoPhillips), and parts elsewhere as well. In fact, Standard Oil was broken up far more completely than Ma Bell, and although all the parts were larger merged into larger entities, they've not reformed with anywhere near the coherency than the baby bells have reformed. Unless ExxonMobile buys up BP, Chevron, ConocoPhillips, Marathon, and probably other companies that have various bits I don't even know about, Standard Oil will never be completely reformed into one.

  • Re:Great... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @10:09PM (#24490619)

    Lotus Notes is truly bad. I've held a job as a notes developer for 18 months before quitting and went back to C++/C#.

    It's often sold as an exchange replacement.. but in practice I've seen it more often used as a document-oriented distributed database (a quick way to write day to day business workflow apps). Where I worked, this technology held the company together.
    As easy as it was to say "let's develop it in (name your favourite enterprise technology)", we built apps from start to finish in less than 2 weeks flat (a.k.a. the time it takes to say Oracle, Java, JSP, Struts, Tomcat, Log4J, setting up your Eclipse and getting people to give you test instances of everything you need). Maintenance was however a nightmare. We had to routinely jump through hoops to get the software to do things it wasn't designed to do.

    Management was happy however! They could easily start new projects and deco old ones - just as quickly as they would start getting replication errors :-D.

    Bahhhh!! Can't stand notes!!

  • by symbolset ( 646467 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @10:38PM (#24490955) Journal

    IBM at the end of business today had a 174.60B market capitalization - more than HP and Dell put together and within reachable range of Microsoft's 239B. IBM's trend is up (just off the 52wk high) while Microsoft's is, well, to be kind, not. Microsoft nearly killed them -- by 1994 their value had dropped to 1/10th of what it is today. For the past twelve years however IBM's stock has been as good or better as an investment than Microsoft's. IBM's value today is more than five times what it was when Microsoft was knifing their OS/2 love child in 1990. And IBM didn't just spend 7B engineering a product so abhorrent it needs this [] kind of "no matter what you've heard, our product doesn't suck" kind of marketing.

    I hope the tide is turning. Maybe this will help [].

  • Re:Perfect example (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @10:46PM (#24491047)

    |Standard Oil was renamed to "Exxon", and recently posted the largest annual profits of ANY company, EVER.

    Except of course that you are wrong. Exxon is #14 on the biggest oil companies list (and the only US company from 1 - 14). Numbers 1 - 13 are mostly national oil companies (think Russia, Saudi Arabia, Iran, etc)

    When you say the "reported the largest profit" thats only true because those other entities do not "report" results in the classic sense.

    This is one urban legend that needs to die.

  • by symbolset ( 646467 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @10:56PM (#24491165) Journal

    Windows client licenses are not free, you know. Not only do you have to pay them, but they actually expect you to count them. How dumb is that?

    Really - who pays for client licenses on a file and print server? That's just stupid.

  • Durham Brewing (Score:2, Informative)

    by freeasinrealale ( 928218 ) on Tuesday August 05, 2008 @11:05PM (#24491249)
    If this is OK with /. - we're a small brewery in Pickering Ontario. For anyone in Toronto try Al's Cask Ale at C'est What on Front St. We also sell Durham Signature Ale in Bottles @ The Beer Store(s).
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @01:49AM (#24492413)

    It's easy to install proprietary Flash and Acrobat programs in a Linux system, just visit Adobe's website ( and ) and run the installers.

    Just because the operating system is open source, doesn't mean you can't use proprietary software as well. I hear the next couple versions of Ubuntu will have a big push towards making this even easier, though :)

  • Re:I gotta say (Score:5, Informative)

    by chthon ( 580889 ) on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @03:56AM (#24493079) Homepage Journal

    I think that you owe it to Compaq that personal computing dropped in price, not Microsoft.

  • Re:Great... (Score:4, Informative)

    by pimpimpim ( 811140 ) on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @04:04AM (#24493127)
    Smartsuite came with the aptiva I bought in 1996, and I had to fresh up my memory, but the infoboxes had two big advantages: first look at the pictures []. You see a drop-down box, which actually means that all infoboxes are available from your current infobox. And there is no frikkin OK/Cancel/Preview button, what you do is what happens, if you don't like it, you change it back.

    Another nice thing was that the equations where editable with both buttons and some latex-like text. Lotus Wordpro really was way better than microsoft word, I used it as long as I had win95/win98, despite having to convert to and from microsoft formats every now and then.

    I recently tried the Symphony package IBM is trying to push, but the installation procedure hurts, and the program itself is just a bit better looking openoffice interface. Even though openoffice isn't the usability nightmare it used to be, it is still at least a bad dream, because it's trying too much to copy MS Office. It drives me nuts! I have a nice assignment: make a table in openoffice, and use the page return to put it at the start of the next page, later on, try to undo it. Change the font of the automatic page number field in the footer, save as rtf/doc, close, reopen. In a table, type a weblink in a table, press enter to make it a weblink, have it be left-lined-out. Afterwards, delete it. Now delete the whitespace sign that still has the link property, if you manage to select it. And why can we never just write tabs in a table?

  • by Bert64 ( 520050 ) <bert AT slashdot DOT firenzee DOT com> on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @04:54AM (#24493349) Homepage

    Counting them, and maintaining a database of how many you use vs how many you buy is also a costly and time consuming process, and often inefficient (ie results in buying more than necessary since some are not reused properly when old hardware is turned off for instance).
    When considering total costs, don't forget to factor in hidden costs like license compliance.

  • by Paradigm_Complex ( 968558 ) on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @05:01AM (#24493383)
    I'm typing this right now on an Ubuntu-based system with an nVidia card running dual monitors. There's a number of "user-friendly" methods of installing nVidia drivers, like Envy [], but I just do it the good 'ol fashioned way:

    (1) Download from nVidia's site, just as you would with Windows drivers.

    (2) Stop X
    (With a standard Ubuntu install:)
    Ctrl-Alt-F1 for command line
    sudo /etc/init.d/gdm stop

    (3) cd to the directory I downloaded the drivers too

    (4) sudo sh [driver-file-name]

    (4.5) Type password

    (5) Hit "OK" or "Next" a whole bunch of times.

    (6) Start X again
    sudo /etc/init.d/gdm start

    To configure it (for things like dual-monitors:)

    (1) Open a command line while in the gui (I think it's Applications -> Console... something like that)

    (2) sudo nvidia-settings

    Next time you give it a go try those instructions, or try Envy.

    I've also got an EeePC. The pre-installed Xandros really sucks, sadly. If you get one, go ahead and get an SDHC card with it. It can boot from an OS installed on either the main flash drive or the SDHC slot (or something through USB) - which means you can try to install Ubuntu (or another distro - anything but that icky pre-installed one) on the SDHC card without worrying messing up the software it comes with. I highly recommend checking out eeexubuntu. [] It's got the reasonably noob-friendly Ubuntu goodness tweeked for the eeepc.

    Also, one last thing - if you have the time and patience (and aren't already familiar with it), take a look at vi. When I got the eeepc, I found I could not keep up with my professors in class on the limited keyboard - I've been dependent on things like home/end and pageup/down, which aren't quite as accessible as they are on a full keyboard. I was directed by a friend to vi (well, specifically vim) which is a great text editing program that functions fine with the eeepc's limited, cramped keyboard. While it's mostly popular with Linux folk, there's a solid Windows version [] you can try. It's very, very different and is not user friendly at all, but in terms of typing notes in class the improvement is enormous. I'd recommend you at least give it a look, even if you find it's too much to try to pick up and drop it.
  • by Bert64 ( 520050 ) <bert AT slashdot DOT firenzee DOT com> on Wednesday August 06, 2008 @05:10AM (#24493417) Homepage

    but very limited, you should be using windows powershell, which is far more powerful but requires you to learn something new.

Have you ever noticed that the people who are always trying to tell you `there's a time for work and a time for play' never find the time for play?