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Linux vs. Windows (for businesses)





MeTHoD-X
First off, tell us what you think. What OS do you use and your justification for your choice.

I'd have to go against the grain and say Windows is cheaper in the long run. I really wish it wasn't, but it probably is. Linux IT guys charge way more (because their rare) then Windows IT guys who are a dime a dozen these days. Plus, businesses would have to re-train their staff to use Linux and all Linux software. That could be costly. One last point I'd like to make is that Windows software is far more easy and plentiful to find then Linux software. So, in the end, your thinking to yourself, "Why did I make this conversion in the first place?"

Give it a few more years, maybe then. Hopefully.
ocalhoun
All that is really needed is better emulation software; with that in place, little retraining would be needed. Also, since linux is far more stable and secure (especially including security from it's own users), you could get away with fewer technicians. (Once you get the system set up and configured right, it'll run very smoothly.)
It also depends what type of things the people will be doing on the systems. If nearly everyone will only be running one program all day (such as in a call center), then linux would be superb.
{name here}
For a cubical business the best is Linux - an office suite and a web browser are not going to be that big of a difference moving to the other platform. But, for web, graphic, and audio design Windows is the king with Studio 8 and CS 2(of course OS X can be used too).
otiscom
Rightly or wrongly Windows is used by perhaps 99% of all businesses in the world to communicate etc.
Linux is good for stand alone jobs, servers, firewalls etc.

So like it or not we're stuck with it.
To change now would be a very costly and time consuming operation.
Like you said this would also mean re-training not only of IT staff but all who use Windows.
lukeropro
Yeah I agree otiscom. Linux can never take over windows
kiranaghor
The biggest hurdle in the progress and in public acceptance of Linux is the policies of its promotors. They really do not want to make it user friendly. They argue on each other's viewpoints and waste time. People who teach linux, charge a lot. Also even though linux is free the service charges are way too much and one feels that why they have to be so greedy. A linux administrator is unnecessarily proud about so called knowledge of 'editing files'. I know linux people even charge students for installation on their home pcs. It is sad that people behind money have slackened the progress of this wonderful invention.
djclue917
lukeropro wrote:
Yeah I agree otiscom. Linux can never take over windows


You're wrong. Very wrong. Look at how much Linux is getting attention right now:

Oracle already announced that they will fork Red Hat's Enterprise Linux.

Link: http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20061025-8079.html

Microsoft and Novell (the company behind SUSE Linux) partner up to bridge the divide between free and open source software (Linux) and proprietary software (Windows)

Link: http://news.linux.com/article.pl?sid=06/11/02/2330219

Also, AMD/ATI has also promised to open parts of even the whole of its ATI fglrx drivers.

Link: http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=576&num=1

I bet in 2- to 5-years time, Linux will have gained a lot of market share and become a really dominant player in the OS market. Just take a look at the advancements (and expected future developments) in the Linux desktop:

AIGLX and Xgl (3d-accelerated desktop)
Beryl and Compiz (eye-candy goodness)
KDE 4 (talk about a redesigned and very cohesive desktop) and GNOME 3 (this one too)
X.org 7.3 (autoconfiguration via D-BUS)

Using Linux is getting easier by each passing month, week, or even day. (of course, depending on the distro that you use)
djclue917
kiranaghor wrote:
The biggest hurdle in the progress and in public acceptance of Linux is the policies of its promotors. They really do not want to make it user friendly.


You are wrong. What's the purpose of Desktop Environments like KDE or GNOME then? I know some distros (Gentoo, Arch, etc.) are pretty hard for beginners, others are pretty easy (Linspire, SUSE, etc.), and some are "in the middle" like Ubuntu.

Even children as young as 6 or 7 years old can even use Linux nowadays.

Quote:
They argue on each other's viewpoints and waste time.


What's your basis in saying this?

Quote:
People who teach linux, charge a lot.


Not quite. As a matter of fact, there are many Linux advocates like us who introduce, install, configure, and teach and educate people on how to use and maintain a Linux box.

Quote:
Also even though linux is free the service charges are way too much and one feels that why they have to be so greedy.


What service charges are you talking about? I bet customer support in enterprise Linux distros are way better than Microsoft's... (basing from other people's experiences with MS support)

Quote:
A linux administrator is unnecessarily proud about so called knowledge of 'editing files'.


You can't really generalize ALL Linux admins. Not all people are the same.

Quote:
I know linux people even charge students for installation on their home pcs.


Well those kind of people might be a rare breed. As I said above, much more people are willing to help and support others in using Linux. I myself have deployed different Linux distros in PCs of people who ask for my help. Our student organization have already helped a lot of computer shops in switching to Linux but WE NEVER charge anyone who wants to be truly in control of his/her system by using Linux.

Quote:
It is sad that people behind money have slackened the progress of this wonderful invention.


I beg to disagree. Open source development is generally fast. Just look at how often Linux kernel releases are being made. Some also think that the pace of development is too fast. But in my opinion, this kind of pace is necessary to achieve a kernel that would support (out-of-the-box) virtually all known hardware on the face of the planet.
Nevvb
How do you setup a linux?
Arno v. Lumig
Nevvb wrote:
How do you setup a linux?


Download and burn the ISO image, bootup your PC with the CD in the drive and it will just ask you if you want to install or boot from HD (at least, with most distros...)


Greetz,
Arno
tomahawk19
otiscom wrote:
Rightly or wrongly Windows is used by perhaps 99% of all businesses in the world to communicate etc.
Linux is good for stand alone jobs, servers, firewalls etc.

So like it or not we're stuck with it.
To change now would be a very costly and time consuming operation.
Like you said this would also mean re-training not only of IT staff but all who use Windows.


There was just an article in our local newspaper regarding the release of Vista. Windows is only in 90% of businesses and home use. I personally use Linux for anything where I'm not doing web design and photo editing, however all of my servers are running Linux. I will always use Linux for anything that needs to be stable and always running. So far, so good. Unfortunately, the only reason why more people don't use Linux, is because it was made to look like a bad thing if you used it because supposedly you are a "hacker". I can't wait till Linux is more mainstream. It would be so much cheaper to run Linux in a business if all you need is a word processor and internet access. OpenOffice is free, as is Mozilla FireFox. FireFox is so much more secure than IE.
stop3ros
Linux is far more expensive then Windows. Why? I was working as an IT technician in hotel. There was one Linux and one Novell servers and everything was working just fine. About 3 months ago Novell server was replaced by Windows 2003 server and Windows 2000 server and Windows 2000 Workstation (three to do job of one, nice). It was just one big disaster!! Hanging processes crashes errors in MSSQL. I was working for 10 to 12 hours a day just to keep it alive. Now nothing changed. And by the way license for 2003 server is very expensive errors are very, very, very expensive!!
If the same would be written for Linux I am pretty sure none of this would happened.
Of course Linux server had some crashes but not that time consuming and often. It was fast good secured and easy to recover even after HDD failure.

Personally I am not using Linux at home, but I think there is no place for Windows in business servers. It’s to buggy insecure and not enough elastic. It eats too much resource just to be running.

Sorry for all mistakes it’s my first post in English: P
djclue917
stop3ros wrote:
Linux is far more expensive then Windows.


Maybe you meant "far more inexpensive"?
stop3ros
Sorry my mistake Smile
Too much BASH programming that day Razz
hbrooks
Mission critical systems (eg servers, web servers, database servers) definately use Linux. Nice and stable. Unfortunatly, we live in a windows world and everybody is comfortable with windows 2000,XP and office so windows clients are far more productive. To much money and time to retrain staff to use linux.
koke01
For a buisiness windows is a cheaper than linux, even though linux could actually be more stable.
akshar
people find linux difficult because it lacks in userfriendliness and since its security policies make hurdels for people to gain access.
according to me linux is best in business internally.but while doing business with general customer windows is best because of its api's and userfriendliness.
ocalhoun
Something I noticed a while ago, Home Depot uses Linux.
It can't be that impractical. I think the major reason is that the average layman (including the bosses) has never even heard of Linux.
peaceninja
my company gets a lot of support from microsoft and we also support microsoft as well. also i work remotely and from home, so having remote desktop is a GODSEND. could not ask for a happier place to be. well i can actually but...

linux i have on my other laptop and i use it for GIMP and stuff, but for IT businesses that deliver software to clients it does not seem entirely practical as we do a lot of dot net development which integrates nicely into windows, which when delivered to our clients its pretty seemless.

although i love linux's idea of "architecture independence"...
whitewhisper
The main problem is that MICROSOFT has one head where LINUX has uncountable number ,centralization gives the company the power to navigate their productes ,LINUX is the best but it's not organised for the market ,the problem is that most of the client-server software are being developed for microsoft ,for web application linux gives a better fight from the server side and the client side , but now days i wouldn't move an organization for linux desktops i will start with the servers side ,there linux is transperant and better .
TheGeek
I am sort of biased on this one, but I would have to say Linux is definitely the way to go.

For starters, Linux, because of its copyrights, will always be free of any charges so you do not have to pay for anything when setting it up as far as the OS goes. Once it is setup and running you almost NEVER need any tech people to manage the computers other than support for the occasional "hey, if I do this it says this" kind of problem. Linux, when set up correctly can pretty much never get messed up in a business environment assuming that all necessary programs and files are installed to the system before distribution to the employees. This is due to the fact that like in windows you can set up the computer to not allow a normal user to install anything, main differences being that unlike windows setting permissions for one person to not be able to install something does not necessarily take away other rights automatically unless you tell it to do so.

In the business environment Linux in the long run I believe proves to be cheaper simply because once everything is setup, it does not need to be touched anymore unless software or hardware changes. In a business environment where users generally are not allowed to do anything outside of work on their computers and often do not know how to take care of computers if something should go wrong, Linux proves to win out over Windows, in my mind at least, because sure its harder to install something in linux sometimes than it is in Windows, but why should they be installing stuff without a techs assistance or permission anyway and with Linux nothing ever really tends to go wrong if all you are doing is using it as long as it was properly setup so a user does not need to really work whether something is going to crash or not work ever and work productivity often increases as a result.
myworld
All a very interesting debate but for me the answer would be it doesn't matter in the medium to long term simply because I feel that the world of software is on the move. We are moving to a more web based application environment and in those circumstances it is not the operating system which becomes important but the browsers which run within the operating system and as more web based applications take more notice of web standards this strengthens the hands of firefox and opera browsers which stick more closely to implementing web standards into their browsers. This is also important also as they run under multiple operating systems which means that the operating system becomes even less important.

As linux runs under open source then who will buy windows in a web based application future unless Microsoft move to free operating systems!! This could be what Microsoft is forced to do. Very interesting to see what happens.
TheGeek
^^ very good point you bring up. I wasn't thinking about it when I posted but you are very right. Web based programs are becoming more numerous and soon we may see companies of the likes of Google and Yahoo taking a shot at their piece of the online program business. Though I feel you have too much faith in Microsoft, thinking that they will ever make a free operating system. Though you should read this this article about one persons view of were Microsoft may possibly be headed in the future and if this is the case then your prediction of the web based interfaces being more popular will probably be just that much more realistic.
zeene
otiscom wrote:
Rightly or wrongly Windows is used by perhaps 99% of all businesses in the world to communicate etc.
Linux is good for stand alone jobs, servers, firewalls etc.

So like it or not we're stuck with it.
To change now would be a very costly and time consuming operation.
Like you said this would also mean re-training not only of IT staff but all who use Windows.


Agreed but all the same, in terms of long-run profit that businesses think of, Linux still rules.

Businesses have reasoned to the tons of money wasted on th insecurity of Windows and licenses.
blk3
If the company is just starting up, I prefer Linux over Microsoft simply because of its cost. But if a company is already set up with Window OS running why bother changing to Linux, (you'll have to retrain users into using another OS) and btw what will become of the Windows OS (I think most versions are not for resale)
TheGeek
It is true that more companies are starting to come to the realization just how much money they could save on security costs by moving to linux. Granted that there will need to be some initial money investing into some user training, but with the current GUIs like Gnome and KDE that operate so much like Mac OS X and Windows XP it will not be much, maybe a little run through of how the file system works, but a normal user who has no need to do administrative tasks can operate the system exactly like they would windows XP...there are even themes for Gnome that make it look exactly like XP... But even the file system leap could be overcome by simply setting up directories that are named similarly to windows directories. I actually know someone who tricked their father into thinking that he had installed windows on his computer when he actually installed linux with a windows like theme and setup the file system to look and operate similarly to windows XP. So putting it on a normal employees desktop who only runs an internet browser, maybe an interoffice chat program and an office suite would be rather simple and rather cheap to impliment...now if the user needed some adminstrative privledges, such as they needed to be able to install programs, that would be another thing, but how many companies give normal employees that kind of access in XP even?
turbowolf
In my point of view, windows administrator is much more plenty than linux administrator. But most of them is not good. Only know how to handle with GUI tools is not enought for an acceptable administrator. But most of the windows administrators only know the usage of GUI tools.

MeTHoD-X wrote:
First off, tell us what you think. What OS do you use and your justification for your choice.

I'd have to go against the grain and say Windows is cheaper in the long run. I really wish it wasn't, but it probably is. Linux IT guys charge way more (because their rare) then Windows IT guys who are a dime a dozen these days. Plus, businesses would have to re-train their staff to use Linux and all Linux software. That could be costly. One last point I'd like to make is that Windows software is far more easy and plentiful to find then Linux software. So, in the end, your thinking to yourself, "Why did I make this conversion in the first place?"

Give it a few more years, maybe then. Hopefully.
Lemur
It depends on what you want in your business. Windows, from my experience is for the less skilled people to use, because of its easy navigation and other user friendly options, but if you're truly wanting to go the extra mile, learn some and have a powerhouse in security and usability, then Linux is for you.

Linux, as I see it is for advanced users who want more from their system as a whole(That, and its not a RAM hog, meh....)
TheGeek
^^ actually...that is somewhat inaccurate to a point. Using a Gnome/KDE desktop can take up almost as much RAM if not more than windows does. Running one like XFCE or Fluxbox can make it lighter than Windows 2000 however. When I had Ubuntu on my laptop for a brief time (hardware incompatibilities), I have 2GB of RAM on my laptop and Ubuntu, running Gnome GUI ate up 1.5GB of RAM to run. Granted I didn't need/use any of the swap partition (basically like page files in windows) but it just shows how much RAM a full installation of Ubuntu actually takes up...even if you don't have that much RAM, that is what the swap is for...
turbowolf
I don't think so.

For the people only use GUI, linux is as easy as windows. Some more user friendly distribution, such as Ubuntu and Suse, improve the user experience. These distribution is not hard to setup and administrate. What a new user need to do is to get familiar with a different environment.

The only killer application keep people in windows is microsoft office. Nothing can replace it in normal business. Even OpenOffice or StarOffice can't replace it. That's sad for linux users. It's obvious that Microsoft can easily port their Office to linux environment, like they port it to MAC. But they don't do it. So I believe that windows will rule the world untill office is not controlled by Microsoft.

Lemur wrote:
It depends on what you want in your business. Windows, from my experience is for the less skilled people to use, because of its easy navigation and other user friendly options, but if you're truly wanting to go the extra mile, learn some and have a powerhouse in security and usability, then Linux is for you.

Linux, as I see it is for advanced users who want more from their system as a whole(That, and its not a RAM hog, meh....)
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