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osOpinion: Balmer and Gates Have Lost It!

Sep 18, 2000, 05:40 (20 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Kenneth Standard)

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"This clarifies the point I wish to make. Ballmer and Gates have completely lost touch with the small and medium systems market place. There is a decidedly different Microsoft emerging as of late. First we saw the shift of developer tools away from client / server toward XML, Web based applications and Web-based software distribution on a major scale. Then Windows 2000 is unfolded a year and a half late with no less than four (count them 4) different versions: Windows 2000 Professional, Windows 2000 Server, Windows 2000 Advanced Server, and Windows 2000 Datacenter Server. Each of these essentially identical products came bearing an increasingly higher price tag. But, even the outrageous pricing structure of the Win2K product line is not the thing that is most surprising."

"I recently had to do a side-by-side comparison for a project I was assigned to. The comparison was to pit the lowly Linux against the powerhouse Microsoft (or so some would believe). The result was a white paper that outlines the essential points anyone must consider when trying to choose between Linux and Windows 2000 in the various versions. To my pleasant surprise, Linux outperforms and out classes Windows 2000 in ALL respects, even in clustered large server farm applications. So much so that the Ohio Supercomputer Center just installed a 128-processor complex using Linux on SGI hardware. Linux, not Windows 2000 Datacenter, Linux! And not a hacked up version that was special for this installation either. Linux as it comes from SGI (a SuSe implementation with software and hardware extensions for SMP load balancing and fail-over for all you flamers). The Microsoft spec sheets show that one cluster can only go up to 64 processors. A limitation that obviously was a major consideration here. Microsoft is decidedly loosing its' grip on the corporate and datacenter server market. All of their "eggs" are in the Active Directory basket (pardon the metaphor). That is the only striking difference between Win2K and Linux from a feature-to-feature comparison perspective...."

"Is Linux the dominant player in the OS battle? Not just yet. There is a pretty large hurdle that must be breached first. The mentality of Linux developers is one of a "cottage industry." Thousands of programmers worldwide are pounding away at source code for the gratification of just contributing to the overall good of Linux Open Source. While this seems noble and altruistic, it will not help to proliferate the use of Linux. Before you flamers warm up your keyboard, consider the facts about the computer world. The majority of potential users of Linux and Linux software are not geeks like you. In fact, the potential user is the average ordinary non-techie. They want a computer to turn on, start up, and run with as little attention as possible. It must perform common functions that (admittedly) Microsoft has spoiled them to expect -- Word processing, Spreadsheet, Database, Web browsing, email and personal information management...."

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