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Linux Getting Worldwide Recognition and Respect

Dec 08, 1999, 05:42 (9 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Philip A. Carinhas)

By Philip A. Carinhas
Fortuitous Technologies

[ The opinions expressed by authors on Linux Today are their own. They speak only for themselves and not for Linux Today. ]

Several countries have announced that they have officially selected Linux as their operating system (OS) of choice, including Mexico and China. Japanese and French industry have all but endorsed Linux nationwide as well. These countries hope to save millions in costs by embracing the Open Source philosophy and to remove the OS stranglehold Microsoft has maintained for the last decade.

Mexico last year announced that they have chosen Red Hat Linux as their OS choice for all their elementary and middle school computers. This is estimated to be over 150,000 computers nationwide and could have lasting implications for further OS selection in that country. Several other Latin American countries are expected to make similar commitments.

China has also knighted Linux as their "Official Operating System". This decision covers all Chinese universities, military installations, and government. China's enthusiasm and confidence in the once renegade Linux OS is well founded. The decision to use Linux is expected to save China billions of dollars in the long term and coincides with recent announcements by GraphOn Corp. to provide Linux servers to the Chinese private enterprise, education, military, and government sectors. As China boasts a population of over one billion, this is indeed a big deal.

The U.S. commercial sector has also given Linux the green light. Among the large commercial PC vendors, Compaq, HP, IBM, Dell, Toshiba, Hitachi, NEC, and SGI sell pre-installed Linux servers, while Motorola has announced their roll out of embedded telecommunication and Internet products for Linux.

Recently, the semi-privatized French TelCo France Telecom has chosen Debian Linux as part of a program to partially upgrade their aging infrastructure. . Debian GNU/Linux, Apache, PostrgreSQL, Perl, and PHP are purported to be integral parts of the program.

Germany has meanwhile been a loyal friend to Linux and many companies there use it on an increasing basis. It's reported that 20 percent of all Siemens workstations are pre-installed with Linux. The Mercedes electronics prototype group is happy with their new 30 Linux workstations and have 10 more on the way. Even the Stuttgart Police now use Linux because of its high reliability.

Japanese industry has been a powerful Linux ally as well, with recent moves involving Oracle Japan, Fujitsu, and others. Oracle Japan recently decided to support Linux on their Oracle8 series, boost their Linux support partners, and migrate their current users away from Windows NT. Fujitsu Ltd. also broke new ground by announcing Linux support for their TeamWARE Office 5.3.

Recent news reports indicate that Hitachi, NEC, Compaq KK, Fujitsu, and IBM Japan Ltd. all offer Linux systems and/or software on an ongoing basis. The icing on the cake -- TurboLinux (a popular Linux distribution) claims to be the number one OS in Japan in terms of units sold.

Elsewhere, Compaq Australia reports 45 percent of servers there use Linux and have redoubled their efforts to support the OS.

The bottom line is clear: Linux has made it to the big time and is undeniably getting the global recognition and respect it deserves.

Phil Carinhas is the president and Linux instructor for Fortuitous Technologies. He can be reached at pac@fortuitous.com).

Copyright © 1999-2000 Fortuitous Technologies Inc.