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Re: Can someone explain the no-change MS mindset?

__/ [ John Hastings ] on Monday 08 May 2006 19:25 \__

Greetings, John.

> We are a single location window company. As in house windows, not Windows
> windows.  We have a good number of Linux boxes that were put in to perform
> single functions and didn't have to go through the purchasing process for
> large projects.  So all of our proxies, firewalls, sans, backup servers, a
> few databases and several desktops are Linux based.  These just sit there
> quietly and run from day to day with very few problems unless some piece
> of hardware craps out underneath one.  No maintainance required except for
> checking for the very rare security patches every now and then.
> So, over to the rest of the network which is XP and 2000 and various
> flavors of WinServers.  That is where 99 percent of IT time is spent, with
> devirusing, debugging, waiting on hold for Redmond, and just generally
> wondering which one will crap out today.  Not to mention the interminable
> and constant patching.

Experience and studies have sproven this to be standard rather than the
exception. I suggest that you read, for example:


> I am not totally anti-windows.  At this point in time I would rather
> support a clean XP box on the desk of a non-techie than a Linux
> workstation just because of fewer user problems based on them getting hung
> up on the differences.  A properly patched XP will work just fine for a
> long time if you can keep the user from downloading their favorite weather
> alerter, or the like.  Or allowing one of their kids to surf with it on
> the weekend.
> But I believe that by now the world knows that a Windows server is not
> capable of supporting an enterprise network. It grew up as a single user
> workstation with no security and less stability and it still shows.
> Ok, enough ranting.  The problem...
> When we suggest that we can gradually migrate our more troublesome
> software over to an open source solution, the instant reaction without
> ever hearing our arguments is, "We can't risk the company on unknown
> software.  We are going to stay with MS, which is the industry standard,
> supported, and is tried and proven.  Forget it!"  ???!!!  Or words to that
> effect.

Anyone fears what is unknown or lies in conflict to personal preference or
choice. If your colleagues or bosses use Windows on the desktop, they
naturally will perceive it in a positive way (some would argue that the
opposite is true). After all, admitting that better options exist out there
would shatter their years of habitual work with another paradigm.

It is important that you pass on to them some real case studies and
information which supports cost and reliability of Linux-based business
solutions. If you search the archive of this newsgroup, you will find many
recent examples. You just need to explore the Web.

> I agree that it is the industry standard for desktops, not necessarily for
> servers.  The support is ok although we have to have a lot of it.  Except
> for IIS and Exchange.  The quality of support that we get for those thrice
> accursed abortions (may dogs grub up the bones of whoever wrote them)
> makes me think that even MS doesn't use them internally, otherwise they
> would be an unknown company that nobody ever heard of.    Tried and
> proven? - no comment.

Some networking solutions in Microsoft are BSD- and Linux-based. If this
tells you anything, I will need say no more. It has been raised in the past
by the media that it lies in utter adversity to arguments made by the sales

> Has anybody here successfully gotten the suits up front to allow a
> migration to Linux from MS?  Even partially?  Or just for the really bad
> MS stuff, like Exchange?  If so, what line of argument did you use?  What
> arguments worked and what didn't?  Or did they tell you to hit the road?

I use Linux for clustered computing (computational servers) and for merely
everything else. I also use it on all user-facing computers. The boss, who
is a long-time Windows fan, softened considerably because he cannot deny the
fact that Linux gets the work done. On the desktop. In the server room.

Mind you, experiences with Exchange servers in our Division are no different:


As much as those responsible would like to deny it, this is simply
impossible. Moreover, Windows on the desktop seems to suffer occasional
infections that waste the staff's time and, that aside, you rarely see
Windows-hugging colleagues getting valuable work done because the tools
available are just too poor. It's like trying to plow a field with a couple
of pool cues.

> Much Grass all.
> J Hastings

Best wishes,


Roy S. Schestowitz      |    Previous signature has been conceded
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