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LinuxWorld: Seeing Through the Linux-Windows TCO Comparisons

Dec 21, 2002, 10:00 (21 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Joe Barr)

[ Thanks to Joe Barr for this link. ]

"As happy as I am to see something finally displace the disgrace that TPC-C 'benchmarks' have become over the years, the new favorite faux-analytical geegaw that Microsoft's marketing droids are giggling over isn't any better. I think you know what I'm talking about: it starts with a T, ends with an 'Oh!' and spells trouble right here in River City. That's Austin, dude. Texas.

"On the face of it, Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) sounds like it should be a valuable tool to project cost-estimates of various software solutions. There is certainly truth to the notion that purchase-price alone doesn't determine total cost. The problems with published TCO studies begin and end with the fact that their allure is only skin-deep.

"For one thing, TCO is like fine wine: it doesn't travel well. What may be true in one situation is reversed in another. What gets trumpeted as a universal truth ('Windows is cheaper than Linux') may or may not be true in a specific case, but it is most certainly false when claimed universally..."

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