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Smart Partner: What's MS Worried About?

Oct 20, 2000, 19:09 (22 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols)

"Ask Doug Miller. His No. 1 job is watching the competitive landscape. ...Miller is a rarity--a top manager who knows both the Unix and Windows NT/2000 worlds. Today, his most important job is keeping tabs on Windows 2000's competitors: Unix (especially Solaris), Linux, NetWare, and IBM's midrange and mainframe operating systems."

"Predictably, Linux is Microsoft's primary concern. The company is "seeing more and more Linux in the low-end Intel space," says Miller. But, "you can do anything with W2K that you can do with Linux, and much more. We don't see this as a technical battle. They need to catch up. They still need integrated directory, security and Web services."

"...he says, "Linux is still focused on cool technology rather than customer-based needs. And the customer needs come first with Microsoft and Windows 2000." Despite Linux's low cost, Miller says Win2000 holds the upper hand. "At the low end, you still need to look at all of the cost involved: training users, ease of use, deployment costs and how quickly you can deploy your applications," he says. "For simple tasks, Linux appears to do a good, cost-effective job. We see W2K as better, though, because you can move up to bigger services."

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