"Freedom Partners is a network of car dealerships in Vermont.
Freedom IT director Chip Kaupp doesn't know one Linux distribution
from another, but he doesn't need to. Freedom Partners' Web sites
and its company intranet run on the Nitix server appliance. Nitix
is a custom variation of Linux that includes Web, email, printing,
security, and backup utilities, which is administered through a
browser-based GUI. It comes in an easy-to-install package, or
preinstalled on its own server hardware.
"'We used to run on Microsoft 2000 Exchange Server,' Kaupp says.
'We wanted to host our own email and do some file and print
sharing.' In the late 1990s that was cutting edge technology, but
the automotive industry has moved to the Internet in a big way,
according to Kaupp. 'The companies are moving everything to the
Web, and the Internet is becoming the lifeblood of our