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Information Week: Pepperoni, Extra Cheese, And Linux

Dec 05, 2000, 20:06 (3 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dan Orzech)

"Maybe it's all those hungry programmers working late at night. Whatever the reason, pizza chains have been among the early adopters of Linux for point-of-sale applications."

"At Donato's Pizza Inc., a 150-restaurant chain based in Columbus, Ohio, the cash registers, along with the terminals used to take phone orders, have been running Linux since February. Donato's had been running its point-of-sale system on Xenix since the early 1990s. Xenix, an older version of Unix for Intel systems, hadn't been supported for a number of years, so Donato's began looking for another operating system. Early in 1999, the pizza chain began testing the Mandrake distribution of Linux. When that passed with flying colors, Donato's ported its homegrown point-of-sale application to Linux, a process that took two programmers a couple of months, says Randy Cuckler, Donato's manager of technical services...."

"Even more important, though, says Ken Hoogstraal, Donato's director of restaurant technology, was Linux' resiliency. Under the old system, a power outage that took out a store server often meant two to three hours of downtime to rebuild the system. "That's time we're not taking orders," Hoogstraal says. "If it happens on a Friday or Saturday night, it could really put the restaurant in a tailspin." The Linux systems seem to come back up much more reliably after an unplanned outage."

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