One contributing factor to Mandrake’s minimal presence in the enterprise is its unusual business model. After legions of Linux salespeople have educated corporate buyers into the open-source methodology — buying low-cost software, but expecting to pay for services — Mandrake persists in taking the opposite approach. Read the article at Enterprise-Linux-IT.
Is There Room for Mandrake in the Enterprise?
2004-02-07 Mandriva, Mandrake, Lycoris 31 Comments
I like Mandrake’s philosophy of free, but Mandrake still looks a bit cartoonish to me.
In the piece, Mandrake says that they stay true to the GPL over RedHat and SuSE. I agree that Mandrake does this more than SuSE, but not more than RedHat. In fact, Mandrake is actually in violation of the GPL with their distro since they ship MP3 capabilities 😉 (the GPL says that you cannot distribute the program if you cannot legally distribute it without licencing fees). Hey, gotta get a jibe in against them.
I hope Mandrake does well. It would be nice to have another great, free (as in beer) distro (hey, I’m a cheap college student. what’d you expect?)
The market will comfortably support maybe 3 distros if they diversify. Red Hat, SuSE, and whatever IBM will do. The rest will likely remain novelties and concept works.
Any business that relies on charity to make money is not contending i my opinion. A lot of people buy the Mandrake box sets because they want to support the company so that it doesn’t go under. This is the marked difference with Redhat and SUSE. Mandrake needs to provide a compelling reason to get people to update, rather than just rely on customer goodwill. If the boxed set route is not working, and Redhat has said so too, then can it. 6 months release times are not helping either.
The bottom line is tht if Mandrake is going to operate like a non profit making organisation, its better to stop being a company all together. No company should have to go begging for money from would be supportes.
I’m not entirely sure just how important staying true to the GPL is to the business sector. They just want something that is well supported, and works. I really don’t think they could less give a damn about the rest of it. The stability of the company they are purchasing from is going be a deciding factor. Novell and whatever IBM is playing with this week, are going to sound solid to big business.
The reason why my company went with SUSE is because of it’s solid biz plan.
At home I use Mandrake for the base of my system because of the easy install.
Well, Mr. Data? Data?
1.suse(novell), or ibm(or is ibm with novell?)
above companies go from enterprise to desktop
maybe mandrake can do it from desktop to enterprise is they know how to play the game.
no i dont like lindows to be the last one into enterprise instead of mandrake.
i use suse. if theres another ‘mainstream’ distro build better than suse than ill considering switch over.
Mandrake is the user’s Linux, not the corps’ Linux, but in the end this fact might win them a slice of the pie.
New users are often recommended Mandrake because it’s free and easy to set up and use. These users will probably stick with mandrake when they get used to all the drak-tools etc, and there will be certain resistance in switching to less familiar linuxs.
When companies look for alternatives the users and sysadmins will have a say, what they’re familiar/comfortable with will matter; there is a good chance that something is mandrake. Debian are on a lot of servers because of preference, not because of a “solid biz plan”. I’ve seen mandrake move into two companies (sure, small) this way.
Personally I think that releasing the whole distro under GPL makes it safer for companies, should Mdk go under, or change biz plan, you can always modify what you’ve bought. With SUSE’s yast, you’re pretty much stuck with what you’ve got.
As for that charity blaha, I won’t be feeding that troll, get a grip.
to me it just seems “XP-ish/OSX-ish”
to rounded graphically and too damn cute!
(cute is not always a Good thing.)
You actually need to get a grip. Not too many companies want to be bothered with modifying a distro they bought. It is probably too expensve for them, which is why they went for an off the shelf solution in the first place. What the GPL does is it makes everything competitive. Mandrake cannot offer anything GPL which Rdhat cannot offer, and vice versa. That s how businesses are safe. If they see that Redhat has something they like, they can always approach Mandrake and ask them to put it there.
As for the charity thing, I will give you a couple of links.
I am not alone. They should drop the Club thing, and concentrate on finding people who can pay for their products. Why is it only Mandrake of the big three who are finding it exceedingly difficult. I can argue pretty much justifiably that any company with a web page called “donations” is looking for charity. I draw the line somewhere, such a mentality is not going to get them firmly in Enterprise. They have to drop the charity thing totally.
If Mandrake fails at the Corperate level it’s surely not due to the fact it’s XP-ish or OSX-ish,it seems to me that these days the IT people in these businesses have grown accustomed to having wizards to do all their setup work,most are too young or too spoiled to want to drop into a DOS teminal to copnfigure their M$ Windoze systems,and that’s the main reason they don’t rush to adopt Linux,sure M$ is crash prone but evrything is point and click,drag and drop,copy and paste,and so on.Plus Windoze’s crash=ability and vunerability gives them plenty of job security,where would all the ant-virus software companies be without M$,a whole cottage industry has grown up around M$’s security holes for crissakes!
Really I think Mandrake would be a contender due to it’s very easy learning curve,the main thiong that scares companies off is the instability of the company itself,what comany wants to tool up it’s network using software that may not be around next year?
Don’t kid yourselves the slick looking interface and the wizard driven configuration tools are not the weakness here ,they are the strong point!
Don’t forget about Perens’ Enterprise/Corporate distro UserLinux:
I was not saying that was a “Bad” thing. just that it doesn’t fit with the “MOdern” coprerate profile… could be an acceptable desktop os tho (if was more “User friendly”)
does anyone know how sky os is doin’ I’m to busy these days to load os’ for one or two days…
that is all
Of those links you provide, one of them clearly states that if mandrake doesn’t go the way one wants it is free to modify, and that we should do so if we arn’t satisfied. This is more or less the security I stated above.
What started out as something charity-classified, _never_was_. It was a label given to it by people who didn’t like the idea of paying for the product, as stated by one of the other articles you linked. However, mandrakesoft are accepting donations, not relying on them, but would it be sound to reject money?
The club is a *good* way of making money and giving people what they want, similar to the subscritpions of redhat, with the differance that the club has a say in the development of the distro.
With the new development scheme of mandrake 10.0 with a community and a stable release I personally feel that they’ve taken all interests in to account.
I know you’re not alone, but being more than one doesn’t make you right.
The whole community thing that Mandrake has going on does not necessarily allay fears of the companies who may want to buy the product. It might make them less wary. Companies want to see roadmaps, and their needs catered for, not some voting mechanism to see which package goes into the next release. In fact, companies would much rather get the product from a company that makes decisions itself about what packages to include. Its rather like Redhat, they are very strict when it comes to including or excluding software. They give roadmaps. They get their software certified. They engage ISVs and other partners to make sure that their software runs best on their platform. They have a solid management system for their software. They have excellent clustering solutions. They talk to their clients and provide features that thier clients want in their software. Enterprise is not about bells and whistles like eye candy. Enterprises do not care about having an easy installer, (though Redhat has this too). Their deployments are probably mostly network based anyway. You do not actually install from a disk in a huge deployment. Its all kickstarted and automated. That is what Mandrake lacks.
For the prices Mandrake charges, it should have cornered the market, but it hasn’t, which shows they are not providing what enterprise wants. And yes, enterprise does not want to see the company asking (begging) for donations,or even accepting them. It does not inspire confidence. why risk something critical like company infrastructure on a company that does not seem able to make money.
The club cannot sustain them. Mandrake has had a lot of its market taken by companies like Xandros and Lindows, which provide arguably a better out of the box experience, and really easy updating and installation of new software. Mandrake needs to find an unfulfilled need and satisfy it, and grow its market.
Big business likes to do business with other big business. When IBM offers a distro then Linux will start it’s major advancement into Enterprise.
GPL is important to companies as it ensures them that the code will be available at least as long as there are users. It also prevents future lock in situations (that could occur with e.g. BSD-like licenses ).
So GPL is good for business as long as the business is not producing packaged software.
Mandrake is still on shacky ground, so yes they still need some work. Last time I checked though Mandrake doesnt rely only on their Club member. The club membership offers features that you cant get for free, end of story. Now what mandrake needs to do is establish dominance in their own country lol. They won two government contracts thats good, but they would need to do more. As far as enterprise goes, yes I have to agree they have a high road to climb, not to mention competing with these distros like Xandros and Lindows which have been eating away at some of MDks market share.
Now as far as the GPL is concerned. If im correct all of Mandrakes stuff is GPL’d not all of Red Hats or Suse is GPL’d such as YAST for instance, and lindows and xandros are under different EULAs if I remember correctly. So you see Mandrake offers more freedom and adhears more to the spirit of linux than those companies. They get points for that, though thats not to say the others had not either, All have contribued $$ or code but again Mandrake seems to be more purer I think.
Mandrake is also very versatile over Xandros and Lindows. Mandrake can be made to be a workstation, web/email server, firewall, home office desktop. Its kind of like how Red Hat 9 was before RH dropped the bottom line for the sake of only enterprise (sure theirs Fedora but Im not sure that really counts as something RH, they just have the name behind it but if im correct the community does all the work for them, something I dont like) Earlier News Interview Mandrake said they wouldnt do what Red Hat did. This deserves points.
to sum up points. Mandrakes still unstable, they seem to be getitng stable. Their community version will be interesting to see, as well as their official three months later. Mandrake probably cant get big in Enterprise, but they can get big for being a true linux company in which ease of use without dumbing down things is there with many uses such as low end web/email servers, desktops, workstations are available to make with their distro. Besides for the price of the ProPack thats not bad to get CrossOver and other cool non free stuff at a price cheaper than Xandros.
..but they could target the home-user and small business market and do well. I’m a big fan of Mandrake, use them on all my machines, but don’t see their organization as necessarily “enterprise” focused.
That’s a big game and I, to some extent, hope they don’t go there.
I don’t either. Mandrake hasn’t really pursued the enterprise market, as far as I know. Whereas, Redhat has made the enterprise market a top priority. If Mandrake worked at it they could probably get there, but it doesn’t seem to be a priority for them right now.
Because the Mandrake Linux is on improving the people…
Well, I hope Mandrake can make it.
In my experience, Mandrake is the distro that has tried to make things easy,
but they do not test thoroughly before releasing new versions to the public. They really need to improve their QA. Every mdk distribution that I’ve installed I eventually removed because there were just too many problems/issues with the tools they build in house. Either the tools are extremely slow or buggy or incapable of handling more complex situations. They have good ideas but they need to implement them better.
So I hope the new development model really produces a rock solid version 10 which will help them succeed in the long run.
Few time ago I was kicked out from a forum by only a single question; It was just the day after the announcement that MDK was back on businness and made profit. The question was only: ” profit ok but what for?? wich businness plan out of that? where to see a new MDK spirit? (on theire home page? if a cat can find its kitten….)
Unfortunatly I guess no they have no real plan just to survive. In this case, anything can come out the best as ……
Tip, if you want to be taken seriously, write in compete sentences, if it’s a touchy subject(the kind that attracts trolls) put it delicately, and be coherent.
What does Redhat make that is not open source licensed. YAST, yes for SUSE, but Redhat open sources all their stuff. I think its safe to say that f all distros, Redhat contributes the most code to the community.
If you tried hard enough, you could make any distro a server, router or whatever. The reason many people do not do that is because they would rather pay someone else to do it for them. You can make Xandros look indistinguishable from your normal Debian. The point is how well its suited to that in ters of letting an admin get off the ground in the shortest time possible, and how the policies are set up to aid the admin. Also, tools to automate as much as possible are highly valued. I think Redhat safely beats Mandrake on the majority if not all of these. I actually think Redhat is easier to setup than Mandrake. Its setup program is logically arranged, and is familiar to anyone who uses Windows, not because they are similar, but it requires you to do much the same thing. But that is still not trribly important in windows. Installers, and graphical setup tools are mostly wanted by users at home. On the corporate desktop, you do not really want users touching these. That is where things like the provisoning services for Redhat come in. This is where Mandrake is seriously beaten.
another thing that I like to point out is that you need to be good at what you do, and you need to appear to be so. Just look for example at Mandrakes website compare dwith Redhat’s or SUSE’s. redhat’s is arguably the more professional of the trio. Redhat has built a very strong brand, something Mandrake could do well to copy. without a brand, they are lost. Mandrake needs the same respect that Redhat gets if it is to compete on an equal footing. The real problem is that Mandrake wants to please everyone. No one does that. You define your target market and grow it. They are now jacks of all trades and masters at none.
It’s just as easy to make a server from a Mandrake box as it is a Redhat box.
Tools like urpmi allow you to easily install updates/new software on as many computers as you want, all in one short command.
Every type of server is included in the distro or in contrib, all easy to install thanks to urpmi.
Mandrake Control Center makes it possible to do almost anything from adding users and setting up samba servers, to automating backups.
I don’t quite see what Redhat does that so special here.
We needed a solution that would allow us to manage the internet at 7 remote sites on our MAN (25mb) and our HQ without kiling bandwidth, and with an easy to remote configure solution. We looked at many different solution from 50,000USD boxes to scripts that ran on login, our final solution? Mandrake with Squid running on PC hardware with two nic cards with HA failover. It just works and webmin allows us to modify from anywhere in the enterprise. It’s an elegant solution to the problem and no capital was needed.
I am so sick and tired of people who need to badmouth one company to favor their pet project/distribution.
Mandrake was the first to offer and easy to install, the first to offer server configuration wizards, the first to automate security auditing and hardening through mandrakesec. The list goes on and on. In fact, even though, Mandrake makes a great desktop, I would argue that it has always been a better server.
It has the oldest and best tested software installation tool of any rpm distro only matched by Debian.
Incredibly stable, great security, easy to configure providing a path for companies migrating from Windows to Linux.
Get a grip and stop filling your mouth with enterprise-this and enterprise that. I applaud a company that tries to make money but that remains consistent in its corporate values and its support of the GPL. The only reason that Red Hat is as big as it is is not technical superiority, although they do provide a good distro. They just happened to have come out with an IP at the right time. They made over $350 million before the IP bubble exploted. Red Hat’s own CEO has himself said so. This has allowed Red Hat to market more aggressively and to remain competitive, but they are not the only kid in town.
I”ll stop wasting my time as more people these days are not interested in honest debate but in pushing their own agenda. I have evaluated the offerings of all the major distributors and have consistently recommended Mandrake to clients because it is easy to support and it works.
Add the missing O in the statement above, where I said IP, I meant IPO.
The capital O in my keyboard often gets stuck.
mandrake ready ? hell, none of the distros for linux are ready.