Re: Linux vs. Windows

Posted by
Kelly on Jan 30, 2004 at 17:14

Re: Linux vs. Windows (Shasta (AKA The Resident Geek))

"I've heard this argument from people who have no experience in Operating Systems. There is a grain of truth there. But you're exaggerating. Linux would become the secondary target. Solaris, the SUN version of Unix, has been out since slightly after the 68000 came out, and many corporations have hundreds of users using Solaris. Why hasn't it become a target? "

Partially because it has inherently better security but mostly because the motivation for most hackers is economic. How many credit card numbers are stored on Solaris boxes?

The rest of your usability / cost argument makes it sound like a mystery as to why Windows dominates the world and Linux is a novelty. Is it just a matter of marketing? Has no one gotten the word to the public?

Linux may eventually replace Windows (or at least force Windows to be more competitive) and it is very popular in some places (China loves it because they don't get in trouble for stealing software, as they have so many times). But most businesses are hesitant to abandon what they have for an OS that gets fixed by random coders somewhere on the net. I know they usually do a great job and the response is fast but the chaotic nature of it makes companies uncomfortable.

Furthermore, the nature of the Linux open source model is only popular because Linux is a fringe OS. When Linux makes it big and replaces Windows, the volunteer programming force on the net is going to start wondering, "Where's my piece of that pie? I mean, it was a fun project but I want to get rich too."

Finally, yes your TCO numbers are accurate. I could point out that the guy with the Visual Studio equipped PC will have vastly more marketable skills than the Linux/Emacs guy but if Linux replaces Windows then the situation reverses so I'll skip that. Instead I'll just quibble by pointing out that although it's very nice to have Visual Studio if you want to code .NET projects, you are perfectly able to do it with free downloads like WebMatrix or SharpDeveloper or (if you really want to show your coder testosterone) Notepad.

Follow Ups:

Post a Followup



[ Forum ] [ New Message ]