posted by Karl J. Sak on Fri 4th Apr 2003 20:15 UTC
IconBefore I get started on my views, I would like to point a few things out. I'm not in high school or college. I'm 35 years old and have been in the computer business a long time. My experience goes all the way back to the hey days of punch cards. I still have a few cards over at my folk's house. I think one of the 'programs' prints out a snoopy. I've worked for several large corporations including IBM and GTE. I'm bringing this up not to brag but to point out that I know a thing or two about computers. Now that that's out of the way, I'll continue.

Editorial Notice: All opinions are those of the author and not necessarily those of osnews.com

Like any techie I do my best to keep up with all the latest news on the web. Slashdot, Wired, CNET, OSNews, etc.; I visit them all just about everyday. And frankly as time goes on, the same theme is happening on most of the tech forums: 'Let's all jump on the bash Microsoft wagon.' It's getting old, just like when everyone was on the bash IBM wagon. Is it just me or is there some kind of book or website that the bashers all read from? It just seems that no matter what tech forum I go into, the same things are brought up every time.

Let me show a few examples:
1. Microsoft sucks or M$ sucks ? ok, and?
2. Microsoft is bundling or buying everything to stifle competition.
3. And the opposite, Microsoft isn't adding enough features to IE, Windows, etc.
4. Windows has so many security leaks, it's not funny. I bet Linux has few too but of course, not as many.
5. Windows crashes all the time.

I get a kick of that out last one. It's funny that all the Window PCs I've worked on always seem to work pretty well. Of course, I'm very proactive on making sure everything is up to date and configured correctly. And with the release of Windows XP, unless I'm doing something I shouldn't be, it just doesn't crash, not at all. I could go on but you've all seen the same things I have. I'm telling you that there has to be a website where you can copy and paste these messages into the forums. That way you don't have to think about it anymore. If there isn't one, I'm going to create it.

The point is, it's getting old, get over it, move on, and get a life already. Yes, there are some things that suck about Windows but then again there are some things that suck about Linux. But if you've been in the IT field for any reasonable length of time you will find out one simple fact, each OS has its place in a network.

Right now, like it or not, Windows is the dominate DOS (Desktop Operating System) and will be for some time. The truth is, Linux just doesn't have the install/uninstall abilities that Windows does. And I'm sorry but re-compiling the kernel for what ever reason just doesn't make it. We don't even need to mention the fact that most users in a call center are much more familiar with Windows which makes it easier to train them. Do we even bother getting into the issue of driver support for Linux which doesn?t match Windows? I would like to see Linux come up and match Windows app for app and feature for feature but that isn't happening yet. Give a few more years and that may not be the case. But then again a lot of the people in the Linux camp keep forgetting one thing, Microsoft isn't just going to sit around and do nothing. Linux is going to have to make some big strides in a short amount of time to compete on the desktop and I hope the Linux crowd can do it. I would like to see the day when I can go to BestBuy and see just as many games and application titles for Linux as I do for Windows. It would be nice change of pace.

In a LAN environments, I would prefer to run Novell Edirectory for handling users. Edirectory is easy to manage and is cross platform. You can run it on Aix, Linux, Windows, Novell, and Solaris. Neither Microsoft nor any of the Linux distros can handle users better than Edirectory. I would even go so far as say that I would prefer to run Novell for my NOS (Network Operating System) over Microsoft and Linux to handle users, software distribution, etc. While working at GTE, we had several Novell 4.11 servers that would run for over 400 days at a time without a crash. Sometimes, I would just go and finally reboot them just so I'd feel better. And if Novell had a decent DOS, I'd probably run that too. But that?s just me. Linux does a much better job of handling web and email services than either Microsoft or Novell. Microsoft on the other hand, in my opinion, is a great application NOS.

In this day and age, IT departments need to get away from running a single OS to handle all of their needs. They should use the best OS for what ever the situation calls for. If in some cases, you need to run Linux on the desktop rather then Windows, then do it. It just makes sense. Yes, this can get expensive but the benefits far out weight the costs. And when things are running good, I can spend more time coming up with new ways to spend the company's money, when they allow me to that is.

About the Author:
35 years old, I've working in the computer field for over 15 years for various companies including IBM, GTE, and Alltel. I also ran my own small consulting/programming business for a few years. I currently live in Parma Ohio, just south of Cleveland.

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