"The negotiations follow a $10 million deal between the
Government and Microsoft for schools last year.
"Attempts to achieve the deal come amid reports from around the
world of governments considering Open Source software alternatives
to Microsoft, and of concerns by IT managers about changes to
Microsoft's software licensing system...
"Reasons being given for investigating it range from cost
savings to an appeal to democratic principles because its source
code is available..."
"As the Government tries to get more value out of its Microsoft
purchasing, there is rising concern among IT managers over the
company's Software Assurance licensing scheme.
"'Microsoft seems to want to accelerate the uptake of new
operating systems,' [IDC Analyst Peter Hind] said. 'It's a failure
to recognise that business is saying, 'we're not going to spend
two, three, four million dollars to get into an upgrade gravy train
so people like Microsoft and Intel can get revenue'...'"