Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sun 3rd May 2009 09:16 UTC, submitted by SReilly
Privacy, Security, Encryption Can you make Windows XP so secure that the United States Air Force will use it in its systems? Well, apparently, you can, but you do have to talk to Microsoft. The USAF wanted a locked-down edition of Windows XP, and since they were in the midst of renegotiating the desktop-software contract with Microsoft, they decided to ask Steve Ballmer directly to create it for them. They did.
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Comment by Hae-Yu
by Hae-Yu on Tue 5th May 2009 04:58 UTC
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Regardless of Windows' merits, why they use Windows is basic IT history.

Yes, they are locked into a Windows environment and that arose from the move away from green screen terminals to distributed, client-server networks with affordable desktops. Just like every other major enterprise, it got away from them, with each unit running its own purchasing and administration with all that entailed. The USAF made a concerted effort to manage their assets, just like most other large enterprises have been doing over the last few years.

In the mid-90s when the client-server concept was going like gangbusters, Linux wasn't a real player, and OS 7/8/9 was unsuitable for the enterprise. Like it or not, Windows systems, dominating the IBM office compatibles, are the foundation of the systems most enterprises use today.

When people say "just scrap it and throw it all away" they only reveal their ignorance. Even if all the software were free, the scale of the effort would probably cost more than Iraq and Afghanistan combined.


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