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Aug 31, 2006, 01:30 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Robert Pogson)

"You walk into the room. It's cool and quiet. You see thirty new workstations giving great service. Your cost of hardware was CAD$350 [US$315] for each workstation, CAD$10 [US$9] to connect it to an existing 100Mbps LAN, and about CAD$60 [US$54] for a share of a server in another room. Your software costs were only some download and CD burn time and forty minutes for installation. Your operating costs are virtually nil. The server runs for months without a reboot. The workstations have nothing but network boot loaders. You back up only one machine, the server. The workstations use twenty watts each and have no fans. Magical? Yes. Magic? No. Arthur C. Clarke once made the comment that 'technology sufficiently advanced is indistinguishable from magic.' A stock server or a custom-built server made from off-the-shelf parts has taken the place of the mainframe in a client/server arrangement. Moore's Law makes the hardware cheap. GNU/Linux makes it free to use to its potential. This is old but capable technology made easy to install thanks to the GNU/Linux revolution..."

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