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Red Hat Software Businesses

Red Hat Unveils Linux E-Commerce Server 115

Wonko42 writes "The subject pretty much says it all; Red Hat is now selling its new E-Commerce server for $149.99. The server is packaged with several other programs, including the Netscape Roaming Module, Squid proxy, and Webalyzer web server log analyzer. And of course, it's built to run on Red Hat 6.0. "
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Red Hat Unveils Linux E-Commerce Server

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  • -Easy to use database
    How long is a piece of string? Defining easy to use is harder than defining pornography.
    -Graphical database tools
    -Simple, graphical server/e-store configuration tools
    I don't particularly want these, but I see their inclusion in the grand scheme of things. I don't personally trust what I can't script.
    -Web authoring tools
    vi, Xemacs, The GIMP, xv, ee...
  • Funny -- when I read that it came with the "Netscape roaming module," I assumed what they were talking about *is* mod_roaming. It definitely *doesn't* say it comes with a Netscape server. Look again.
  • Then none of the developers on the team are worth their weight in crap. Out of the box Site Server is just samples. It is schema independent and if you feel that you where locked into the schema you must really need some relational database design help. Now don't call me a M$ supporter but I feel that the Site Server product is a good product if your client tells you to use NT as the web server. You just have to learn that the out of the box crap is all you can do with the server software. Look at Costco's website [costco.com], or Gap's [gap.com] or even Starbucks [starbucks.com]. These sites are using Site Server and every single one of them works, and the code behind them is nothing like a sample store shipping with the Site Server Commerce Edition box. In any venture it comes down to the developers skill. Not what product is used. Some are just better and easier to use.
    I am not a M$ Salesmen I just use tools that work in the enviroments I am forced to work in.
  • GO REDHAT!

    That should put a dent into M$ e-business plans!

  • Question is, then, what can we do about it?
    Answer: NOTHING. Who cares if suits want to pay for things. Let them. Red Hat sells a fine CD/manual/support-package full of GPL'ed stuff you can get from your local Debian mirror.

    If people WANT to pay for something they can get for free elsewhere....LET THEM. It'll let Bob Young and RH get richer, and in turn they help out the rest of the community. We all benefit.

    Sheesh. The end.

  • GO REDHAT!

    That should put a dent into M$ e-business plans!
  • My server guru has been working on a box like this for the past couple months. basically running the same services. However we didn't have a *real* linux box to work on so we ran it on a rehashed P133 with ~70MB RAM. It's running sweetly, but about a week before we're ready to unleash it on one of our real servers RH decideds to package it?????? C'mon guys couldn't ya at least throw us a copy on CD??? or a couple shares of IPO would be nice *wink wink*
    oh well enough whining.... at least RH is firing up to help us all out before they get gobbled up by the big ugly dogs.
  • I'll bet mySQL would come down on its $200 license fee if it could get a nice cut of this package's sales.

    If I were them, I'd cut a deal, because this product is bound to sell. Yes, it's an agglomoration of things you could get for free -- but if you've bought a Linux distribution, you've already bought a similar product.

    D

    ----
    1. Search for Red Hat reveals 102 stories [slashdot.org]
    2. Search for Debian reveals 37 stories
    3. and a search on SuSE revealed 15 stories.
    So while I disagree with you that Slashdot is RedHat biassed, you might make a case that they are posting a huge number of stories about them. THis is probably a result of Red Hat being in the news more than those other distros.....and not a result, as you so eloquently put it of Slashdot being "Red Hat's Bitch"....
  • Actually, I would bet that it does.

    One of the most common real-world consulting assignments is to take existing tools and put them together to make a system work. Whether they are free or not matters little - in fact, you can charge a higher fee if your client doesn't have to pay $ 5,000 for the basic system.

    Remember, most software is written as a VAR/consultant for clients, not as packaged stuff.

    D

    ----
  • WebAnalyzer is nice....but I still like Wusage [boutell.com] better.
  • Wake up people, yes this is obviously for low end e-commerce systems. You can't play with the big boys until you've gone through the farm leagues. As for the price? Well let's consider this, install any linux dist. Then download compile and configure all the e-comerce components to work together. Well I know what I get paid per hour, and at $150 it is quick, easy and PRE-CONFIGURED. As for the GUI missing, you don't like it? Then write the program and fix it!!!!
  • >and full of pith and vinegar. Where do you come up with this stuff? Mr. Burns. >Don't count your uptime until it's happened I will put linux uptime againt your M$ uptime anyday!

    Wow, you think I'm Bill Gates? Nope, I'm proud to say I now do all my work in Linux.

    Have you ever even administered a system? Do you know the joy of installing a new program or changing network setings without having a reboot? NOT WITH WINDOWS!

    In my humble way, I have known such joys. And you're right, not with windows.

    >I need a better catchphrase paraphrase

    Yes you do.

    Oh beaked and inebriated one, in the spirit of Open Source, I beseech thee, this wert a call for a little tweaking, not an invitation to a brusque reply!

    >I don't think RH's little "solution" here will >make any kind of significant dent in a market MS >has yet turned its eye to.

    And couple of years ago people were saying, "I don't think the linux os will make any kind of significant dent in the market"

    Look, my point is pretty much the same as what others -- no less pro-Linux than me, and often more so -- have been saying here: this is a *low-end* package. That's fine; I don't think MS has set its sights on that market, so it may well do some brisk business. But it's not gonna bring down MS all by itself. This is a long and involved process, and at best this is a teeny tiny part of that process. Certainly not worth apocalyptic rhetoric.

    Wow, arthurs_sidekick, you are very insightful...NOT.

    Continue to ignore the facts, it will be yours and M$ downfall!

    ... and so the drunken penguin continues the rampage. But let's not make assumptions, 'cos you know what they do to U ... and, well, not me, just U in this case.

  • > There is nothing out there that has all the functionality of MS Money 99, that also runs on Linux.

    Amen.

    I've found a replacement for everything I use under Windows that does what I need under Linux, save for the Money "Small Business" edition.

    I'm no accountant and don't much feel like using any of the professional accounting solutions available for Linux (and there are some quite robust ones out there), and none of the GnuCash/MoneyDance/etc. programs do what MS Money does for me. At least not yet -- I have high hopes. I also considered a home-grown spreadsheet-based system, but I'd rather spend my development energy on Mason (http://www.masonhq.com/) projects.

    It is a bit irksome, but I'll live with it. I wasn't doing anything fun on the old Windows box anyway.

    YMMV.

    ObOnTopic: So how is this different from the secure server package RH was selling previously?
  • Does it do credit card transactions with name and address verify?

    Inventory and accounting interfaces?

  • IPO with ETRADE. Want to make money?? $500-1000. Email me at zxrj1@aol.com
  • There've been many heroines (servers) in the history of Linuxdom. However, there weren't too many heros (Workstations, PCs) in the history of Linuxdom. Leon
  • you can get almost the same thing for $79.00 from Ma cmillan Software [http]
  • Who do they plan to sell to? How many corporate
    types are going to trust their e-commerces to RedHat. They are strictly in the low end market maybe this is good for mom & pop e-commerces sites, but it seems like a bit waste of time and money.

    Course I read this article after say that Linux is not a e-commerces solution :)
  • That's the only reason I'd buy an E-commerce system in a box. I don't have time to worry about every new script kiddie attack and patch to fix it. I want to pay someone else to worry about all that for me. Or at lease roll up all the fixes for me so even confused MS Bob users can install the fix. I've got work to do and no time to find and compile bug fixes myself. Does the Red Hat package offer this?
  • then:

    "Redhat IS the next Microsoft!"
  • Don't forget: "First Post!"
  • Unless you go s/Net/Open/, this is not exactly right. OpenBSD is probably the most secure OS available right now!!!
  • Dent?! Ha! For a mere 149.99 one might as well
    give it away. You all will never learn.
    Mr. MS
  • In my econ class in HS we learned that the reason you see so many ads for cars offering "$1500 cash back," instead of "On sale! $1500 off!" is because most americans associate lower price with lower quality. Ie, if they're slashing prices, it must suck.

    So maybe this has something to do with that. Maybe, to be taken seriously, they have to price things way out there. Just a guess. Of course, I'm sure they don't mind the extra money.
  • Personally, I'd prefer to use the tool that does the job the best. If that tool is "open-source", so be it. But if it's not, I'd still rather use that than use something of lesser quality just so that I can know I'km using "open-source" software.

    Software may be proprietary, but standards do exist that allow for the movement of your data from one system to another. So long as I never lose access to that, I stand by my point.
  • read/visit redhat's site. you might learn something instead of whining.
  • its perfectly stable if you kick out gnome/kde and live with the default afterstep/wm.
  • quick, easy site setup. comes with SSL + digital certificate discounts. full packages from hp, ccvs, minivend..etc.. i like.
  • We all will never learn? HA! Micro$oft is the one who is learning now. Linux is teaching you and the DOJ is teaching you! We will kill your e-business and you will easily fall. Linux is the best and will remain the best. Win2K sux now and will a poor out of date hunk of crap when it is released. Your crowd will learn!

    Just watch how we do it, we make it look easy!
  • Now, now, children. We must not waste energy bickering. The drunken penguin is
    just that a drunken fool. Do not hesitate and put he in his place, that is in fact what
    MS does each and everyday to Linux.
  • is it GPLed. or even open-source?
  • If the PHBs of this world need a trendy fad to be hyped for Linux before they'll switch, all the better for Red Hat. Let RH hype their products with marketese, and let's not rain on their parade. Most slashdot readers will spend their $150 on caffeine and gadgets (Lego!) and happily make their own e-commerce server for free.
  • Lst's look at what really makes sense in the e-commerce world. Complete interactivity with the corporate data == 95% of the time you need M$ SiteServer 3.0. Best platform for secure reasons == NetBSD & Stonghold. In the real world these solutions work. RedHat is just adding fodder to the E-Commerce fray. No self respecting web store (of good size) will use this technology with products out there from IBM, and M$ that offer management tools for the store and native database connectivity built in that is secure by default.
  • by PigleT ( 28894 )
    You can get apache, openssl, squid2 and webalizer with SuSE 6.1 - indeed they're all open-source.

    I've been to the linked site and read around a bit - it seems full of nothing but marketroid-drivel., but then again I think e-commerce == hype + forms + hype + ssl + hype + CGI, so what do I know? ;)

    What about RedHat's "package" is worth the remaining $100 ?

    ~Tim
    --
  • If the Red Sox site is a good example of minivend I can't say I'm impressed.

    To try and find a game that has good seats available is a real chore - you have to give all of your vital information, including CC#, before you get to see what seats there are.

    And if you don't like them you get to start all over since "using the back button on your browser will cause errors".

    As I said, I'm not impressed.
  • grumble grumble red hat grumble open source grumble bastards grumble end of civilisation grumble new microsoft grumble making money grumble evil grumble apache grumble grumble.

  • Not real sure. The quote off Red Hat's site says
    *This product comes with complete source code except for the RSA encryption modules and 3rd party Application CD packages.

    So while you seem to get the code I'm not sure its GPL or open source. At least part of it is proprietary, but maybe they will make it GPL and add the charge for the RSA part. Like leave the code incomplete you need something to do the encryption. Err something.
    I really have no idea and am just blathering.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Why do we need the Netscape Roaming Prefs server when Apache can do it?

    Check out:

    http://www.klomp.org/mod_roaming/

    It works great, and does the job... for free!
  • Depends upon whom you are speaking with. I think RMS reckons that 'free software' is better. I believe the thinking is that proprietary software threatens real individual freedoms. Anyway, lets wait and see what happens once Hurd gets a bit more up and going. This whole linux hype may just fade away as a whole bunch of gnu-heads switch camp.

    btw, it is not 'free' as in 'free speech' as some would have it. It is more like 'free' as in 'non-proprietary'. Me, in my experience, most ppl are into it because it is actually 'free' as in 'free beer'.

    -- Reverend Vryl

  • is it GPLed. or even open-source?

    No, no, you've got this Slashdot posting thing all wrong: the first question is always

    Great, but will it run Linux?
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Redhat has once again figured out a way to sell a bunch of free software for even MORE money.

    $149 for a bunch of free code, and TRIAL VERSIONS of e-commerce software. What a bargain.

  • I was thinking the same thing... I looked at the small blurb about it, and talked about it on IRC some... Why in the world, when you are trying to make Linux a viable operating system in the world today, make free items so expensive?

    Normally I would think that Webalyzer must be some kind of expensive logging software or something... No, in fact it isn't even that wonderful. It does its job but it is free.

    I don't get it, lets rake em over the coals now while the Linux hype is up and forget about later...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    M$ that offer ... native database connectivity built in that is secure by default.

    Is it really secure by default?
    http://ntbugtraq.ntadvice.com/default.asp?sid=1& pid=47&aid=47

    Also, by the time you have 'complete interactivity with the corporate data' with Site Server, you are half way to a custom solution. Site Server just seems like a pretty low-end product, or at best a bunch of example code for MTS programming.

  • RedHat does at least as good a job as anyone (and a *much* better job than, say, MS) of making bug and security fixes available quickly. Note that RedHat doesn't do much of the fixing, they just make the fixes available.

    If worrying about timely responses to security problems is your main concern, then RedHat probably wouldn't disappoint you.
  • Cause not ALL of it is free...
    and must you insult everyone?
  • as I recall, Hurd's "been around" for years, and it's still never been reliased. linux is here now, and it works.
    "Subtle mind control? Why do all these HTML buttons say 'Submit' ?"
  • by Anonymous Coward
    You can have a copy of my car if you like.
  • Actually, just toss out GNOME and use KDE and you will be perfectly stable.

    If I didn't have to install a new UPS the otherd day, I could could shown you my RH6 uptime, still from about two weeks after I upgraded to it.

  • but why must we pay $150 for something that is free? I am assuming that you are paying the $150 for the RSA license. It is illegal to use OpenSSL/mod_ssl for commercial purposes here in the US and Canada.
  • Not available to the rest of the world, in case I cared. I'll stick with building my own e-commerce server with Apache, mod_ssl and jserv, thanks.
  • tuxthedrunkenpenguin sez:

    We all will never learn? HA! Micro$oft is the one who is learning now. Linux is teaching you and the DOJ is teaching you! We will kill your e-business and you will easily fall. Linux is the best and will remain the best. Win2K sux now and will a poor out of date hunk of crap when it is released. Your crowd will learn!

    So that is what the esteemed Mr. Torvalds had in mind when he thought up the penguin as a logo. A few beers in 'im and he's all, like "I'm indestructible!" and full of pith and vinegar.

    Don't count your uptime until it's happened ... damn I need a better catchphrase paraphrase. But I don't think RH's little "solution" here will make any kind of significant dent in a market MS has yet turned its eye to.

    However, just wait til next year!

  • authurs_sidekick says:

    >and full of pith and vinegar.

    Where do you come up with this stuff?

    >Don't count your uptime until it's happened

    I will put linux uptime againt your M$ uptime anyday! Have you ever even administered a system? Do you know the joy of installing a new program or changing network setings without having a reboot? NOT WITH WINDOWS!

    >I need a better catchphrase paraphrase

    Yes you do.

    >I don't think RH's little "solution" here will >make any kind of significant dent in a market MS >has yet turned its eye to.

    And couple of years ago people were saying, "I don't think the linux os will make any kind of significant dent in the market"

    Wow, arthurs_sidekick, you are very insightful...NOT.

    Continue to ignore the facts, it will be yours and M$ downfall!

    - TDP



  • Yes, I've deployed squid and OpenSSL, but never used mod_perl to my knowlege.

    However, all 3 are only a matter of installing packages. You grab squid*.rpm and you're away, or you select mod_perl in dselect (Debian, of course) and apache reconfigures & restarts itself.

    This much is definitely easy; what I will grant folks is that there's more backend processing and order tracking, and maybe the RSA license will cost a bit.

    Oh well...

    ~Tim
    --
  • Well seeing that Apache is the most popular web server on the net, and that Microsoft is finally admitting that Linux is a viable server product, I figure that many small and medium sized E-Commerce Businesses will be leaning toward this kind of package. I'm trying to set up apache with servlet support right now, and if I didn't have to spend hours downloading over my modem lines I would gladly pay $150.
  • Doesn't it already apply to drug users? And then we would be infringing on their IP. And that would be bad.

    -awc
  • That's why I use Linux for my servers and NT for my workstation.

    There is nothing out there that has all the functionality of MS Money 99, that also runs on Linux.
  • What does "not integrated" mean, other than letting you replace components that don't do what you want without scrapping the rest?

    It means that the various components weren't designed with eachother in mind. There's no single configuration point.
    A truly integrated solution would tie all these things in together, while still allowing you to scrap componants in favor of third party add-ons.

  • With a $150 price tag, who do you think they are targetting?

    They are targetting the "home user with ADSL that wants to sell a few things online". Anyone a little bigger would use some web-hosting/co-location setup. Anyone bigger than that would spend the $$$ to plan for the future.

    Hmmm... I guess they could also be targetting the "new developer wants to learn about E-commerce" people too.
  • by remande ( 31154 ) <remande AT bigfoot DOT com> on Tuesday July 27, 1999 @08:12AM (#1780586) Homepage

    Disclaimer: My employer is in the e-commerce backend business. While we run Red Hat on our site, we are in no other business relationships with Red Hat. None of our products/services are currently in Red Hat's E-Commerce kit.

    How about:

    hype + forms + hype + ssl + hype + CGI + hype + credit card processing + hype + tracking orders?

    People sell these great "e-commerce" solutions that set up a beautiful storefront. They forget about accepting payment.

    There's a lot of e-marketing software out there. Tease your eye, get you to buy. The rest of e-commerce is how to get your money, how to get the customer their product, how to track complaints...all the non-sexy stuff.

    The packages that the RH kit ships with at least claim to work the backend, from payment processing and credit card authorization to order databases. As to how well the packages actually work, I have no personal experience.

    As to whether it's worth the extra C-note, it's the same RH gambit: save you the trouble of getting it off the FTP site, likely bundled in with some installation support. When "trouble" can be measured in engineer-hours, that $149 is chicken feed.

  • Same old suits-must-pay scenario, and I guess it's only too true.

    Question is, then, what can we do about it?

    ~Tim
    --
  • Followed by:

    Kewl, can you imagine a Beowulf cluster of these???

  • Well quite obviously, the person you are referring to isn't a professional. They are probably some 12 year old kid who has never used Redhat in his life, probably not even Linux. He probably thinks Redhat IS Linux, and therefore he hates Redhat...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I've been to the linked site and read around a bit - it seems full of nothing but marketroid-drivel., but then again I think e-commerce == hype + forms + hype + ssl + hype
    + CGI, so what do I know? ;)


    Well,

    a) Red Hat provides technical support.

    b) To use RSA (required for SSL) for
    commercial usage you need to license it from
    RSA Data Security Inc. [rsa.com] - which is worth $100.

    c) It's one package, making it easy for something who wants to use existing tools to setup their own e-store. Time is money, so by including all these products and demos together in one place it can save a lot of time. There is no need to spend time looking at lame solutions or NT-only solutions.

    d) Most real e-commerce solutions include credit card processing software or micro-payments, something you can't "roll-you-own" and expect your local bank to let you interface with them.

    e) Some people have mentioned Stronghold [c2.net] as if it was free, it's not free for commercial usage! Again, due to the RSA patent issue (b).

    f) No one said you had to buy it.
  • It sure is a hell of a lot cheaper then the alternatives, which run on NT. Cost for Microsofts solution start at about $4.5k and move up from that, plus factor another 1.2k for NT server (or is that included, don't really know, either way...). And of course, the obligatory $30k quad processor, multi-nic server ;-) Hey if if RedHat can make a buck, contribute to open source, and popularize Linux, I ain't complaining.

    Spyky
  • is it GPLed. or even open-source?

    Question isn't entirely appropriate. The product isn't an integrated solution, rather a bundle of some open source/GPL'ed tools with the usual Red Hat offering of "TryWare" commercial stuff.

    I wasn't going to ask anyone for input for a while, but I've started working on an open source Site System to try and tie in some of the things websites (both small and enterprise) need today, like user membership/personalization, indexing, logfile analysis, knowledge management etc.

    I'm working on user stuff right now using PHP and Apache. If anyone is interested in something like this please contact me [mailto]!

  • but why must we pay $150 for something that is free? Where is the whole pay for book and media only? Give me a break, there is no need for that.
  • If you use MTS with SiteServer Commerce Edition you got to have a hole in your head. The pipelines(READ BUSINESS OBJECTS) do the same thing without the overhead of the dedicated transaction server. I have built a very good, (quick, secure, makes six figures a day) commerce site with SSCE. I have built on Stronghold. WHat was is the best product? SSCE. It supplies the owners of the site just what they need. It makes there legacy data accessable and I go stright to EDI for the fullilment. Six months to build from site background image to C++ business objects to connect EDI systems. With any other product, you could add another 8 to 12 weeks development to the project. And finding people to maintain the site would of been very hard. Use a product for what it was designed for then tell me it is shit
  • How so? You can still sell your product. Look at how Netscape dealt with Mozilla (except for the fact that they stopped selling it because of microsoft)
  • b) To use RSA (required for SSL) for
    commercial usage you need to license it from
    RSA Data Security Inc. - which is worth $100.


    I talked to RSA about a licence. The price starts about $50,000.00 and goes up from there. What you are buying is the RSA LICENCE (and support).

    Christopher McCrory
    Lead Bithead, Netus Inc.
    chrismcc@netus.com
    admin@netus.com

    "Linux: Because rebooting is for adding new hardware"
  • : What about RedHat's "package" is worth the remaining $100 ?

    Have you ever deployed squid? Have you ever deployed SSL+mod_perl? It's not rocket science, but it takes more than just installing some packages. For people who can't or don't want to employ a hacker for that integration, they can buy a package like this one.

    There will always be a need for integrating existing softwares in new ways and it takes a certain amount of skill. Therefore, there will always be a market for "integrated" packages which fill a trendy niche. They're selling convenience - just like ready-made cookie dough. (mmmm...)
  • do they give you full support w/your $150? Or do you have to pay more for more support?
  • When a Redhat story is posted.... Moderators can't keep up with the flames :) Seriously, I think redhat is pretty cool still, and very useful.. I'll probably switch distros again soon because things don't work quite as smooth as they do elsewhere as of late.. I think only when they switch from GNU tools or the linux kernel to some weird proprietary replacement will I become concerned about redhat causing trouble.. Linux distros that are based on GPLed libraries can always be compatible... Granted, some library choices in redhat may differ from other distros, but you can always have a directory for different versions of libraries to run different distro binaries :)
  • That's incredibly short-sighted. The real big question should be "Does it work?"

    Open source is nice. Fully funtional is better.
  • Good idea, RedHat should market this package as toys for the wantabe developer. Still for free you can get BSD and stronghold if you want to learn the tricks of the trade do it with real e-commerce software.
  • Oh, shutup. Ever notice how Slashdot centers many of its stories around Linux? It is News for Nerds. Ever notice that Red Hat has many, many Linux packages for various purposes (although one could argue there a tad over priced). Slashdot recently had a story about a new release of SuSe that hasn't even been released yet. Also, it featured a prevelant story on the release of a new XFree86, although no binaries are to be released until the next version. Red Hat makes less Linux packages, they get less time here. SuSe makes more, they get more time here.

    adam
  • Ok, we all know we're talking about a low-end E-commerce site here, so here's what's missing from the package:
    -Easy to use database
    -Graphical database tools
    -Simple, graphical server/e-store configuration tools
    -Web authoring tools
    They can't sell a package that centers on MySQL, because that would incur their weird licensing costs (Although they can include it as an option), but maybe a PostgreSQL/MySQL option would be allright. KMySQL is a great, free database frontend that has plugins to work with other DBs (no Postgres yet, though) and could be great if RH would invest in it a little.
    Templates are easy and/or freely available.
    Hmm... what does that leave undone? Easy tools for building e-commerce apps. Something easier than, say, Zope or another real app server. People just want a "Yahoo Store" or the like.
    --JZ
  • MiniVend is an excellent piece of software. This is a big market for Linux and related open-source packages. It makes perfect sense for RedHat to bundle and package this. It makes my job easier, too, because when people ask me what it runs on, I can say "RedHat E-Commerce Server" instead of getting down in the mire of having to explain and defend the open-source mentality. People want to pay for this stuff. This is a good thing.
  • by bobert ( 27752 ) on Tuesday July 27, 1999 @08:37AM (#1780608)
    Let's look at what really makes sense in the e-commerce world. Complete interactivity with the corporate data == 95% of the time you need M$ SiteServer 3.0.

    Luckily, this is not true. After running Siteserver on a fast-growing e-commerce site for a year, we finally broke down and ripped it out and put a custom solution in its place. Siteserver compatibility generally means only that the product uses the default db table names that Siteserver creates. This can be configured or the tables can be emulated. However, Siteserver itself is little more than a bunch of poorly written Visual Basic Script scripts and some extremely inefficient objects (out-of-the-box, anyway) for storing and manipulating the shopping cart data, bundled with some site analysis tools that we didn't even use. The overhead and inefficiency of the product outweighed any benefits we got, so much that even management suggested we get rid of it.

    My advice is, though, don't even start using it, because it _is_ very easy to get stuck with it when you start buying 3rd party software that runs with it, etc. The lock-in effect is harsh. But, as I was saying, luckily nearly 100% of the big-name e-commerce players offer a (usually better and more mature) UNIX version of their software in addition to a Siteserver version. This includes the credit card processors (Cybercash, Clear Commerce), etc. Note that Siteserver does not come with credit card processing software.

    This has been my experience. There is no way that RedHat's package could be worse.

    bob

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