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LinuxPR: Open Source Software Brings Huge Benefits To Construction Firm

By replacing its back-end IT infrastructure with open source
software, a London-based construction firm has gained huge benefits
in reliability, scalability and performance, plus more than halved
its annual Microsoft licensing fees–saving over £200,000
this year and about £100,000 each year from now on. Sirius
IT, who implemented the solution, states that by running Open
Source Software on Linux, yet keeping Microsoft Office on each
desktop, its client, Killby & Gayford Group, has not only
radically increased its business competitiveness but has also
drastically lowered its operational costs.

Killby & Gayford Group now use an entirely open source
solution to run their complex network, spread over two sites,
whilst their 180+ end users continue to use the familiar Microsoft
Office suite on their desktops. Sirius IT claims Killby &
Gayford is one of the very few examples of a fully integrated open
source server/Microsoft desktop infrastructure anywhere in the
world.

Measured benefits Killby & Gayford have gained are:

  • Massive reduction in software licensing costs due to the
    replacement of Microsoft server software with open source
    alternatives.
  • Zero user retraining costs – end users continue to use the
    familiar Microsoft Office suite on their desktop.
  • Simple, powerful, secure, single sign-on – staff can now logon
    to the network, from any desktop, using any operating system, and
    use any service.
  • Vastly increased security, plus total back-end immunity to
    viruses.
  • Radical improvements in file access and print serving speeds,
    across the network.
  • Rock solid network stability – uptimes now measured in years,
    rather than weeks.

The project is being considered for entry into Construction
News’s prestigious “Most Innovative use of IT” award.

Mark Taylor, Managing Consultant with Sirius IT, said: “We can
ensure the benefits of open source solutions are within the grasp
of any business. Within three to six months our clients benefit
from a more stable, more reliable, faster and more secure network.
The payback is normally well within one year.

“Importantly, we implement open source networking solutions
incrementally. This causes the minimum disruption to our client’s
business. Plus there are no re-training costs for staff. The change
is seamless and invisible–they continue to use Microsoft Office on
their desktops yet gain radical improvements in response,
availability and reliability.”

Full Case
Study

[Editor’s Note: Though this case study is rather short on
the financials, it does provide a good overview of what Open Source
tools were implemented at this company, including links to terms
and a thorough HOWTO on setting up LDAP. -BKP]

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