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Microsoft claims Linux provides weak value 540

Microsoft's Ed Muth (him again) is claiming that Linux offers little value since it has fewer off-the-shelf apps, and no long term development road map. Moreover it suffers from a lack of integration between the OS and the apps, which is needed so that users can drag barcharts between Excel and Word. (Heard of Corba? No I guess not). Indeed Ed claims Linux usage figures are inflated. Finally, it must be obvious that good programmers won't code for free so they can't be good -- just like Van Gogh could not have been a good artist. If nothing else, Ed's good at rhetoric -- "Let's say, for discussion, they are equally scalable" implies nicely that NT is obviously more scalable. But his outburst is somewhat odd given that Microsoft's trial is not over, and the SIIA is recomending it be broken up. Thanks Alex Prestin for this link.
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Microsoft claims Linux provides weak value

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  • This is just fan mail - DDT I LOVE YOU! :) woo!

    And he's right of course, like we've all said: MS just isn't getting it when it comes to the "capitalism" point. Why shouldn't the "best" programmers invest in a project that isn't *greed based*. Isn't altruism a positive human quality?

  • Equally Scalable

    Oh man... this had me cracking up. I'm still not sure if he was trying to make fun of NT or if he really believes NT scales better. How silly!

  • by Pasc ( 59 )
    I think the Oracle guy bashed MS enough in his little speech-o-matic. I mean... sure NT sucks, but I don't want to listen to somebody bash MS the whole time... LinuxWorld is about Linux.
  • It seems valid to me - To my understanding (3 or 4 economics classes) pressure to drive costs down is one of the strongest forces in an economic model.
  • Since I'm working towards an Economics minor, I know a little bit about economics, although certainly I'm aware that I don't know everything.

    Yes, it is all about money, but not in the way you are thinking. To a business whose interest is in maximizing profit it's all about lowering costs. Hear that? Lowering costs. It's not about paying Microsoft for low quality software just because there's a lot of support (although alot of businesses obviously take that route), it's about finding the cheapest way to produce whatever you produce in the long run.

    To a business, the main obstacle to implementing Linux solutions is probably support. These days it's probably not due to application support, but installation and troubleshooting support.

    So really you're argument has no legs to stand on. To us, the linux users/gurus/administrators of the world, it IS all about the most stable platform to run your apps on.

    Your main argument states that the "Real World" is different because it is all about money, but in reality the real world is more complex than you and I can comprehend. It is not all about money, but a complex set of variables of which money is but a single.

    Let me put it to you this way. You have a job to do. You can do it in two ways:

    1) Buy the crappy Microsoft solution and live in the endless cycle of buggy product upgrades, hoping the next cycle solves all your problems, but it never does.

    2) Implement the inexpensive, more stable, more reliable and often more robust free software solution.

    I predict that as businesses start to implement more free software solutions they'll find their costs going down, leading to increased market share and/or increased profits. Therefore these companies will become more successful and eventually dominate the economic landscape.

    P.S. a hotmail email doesn't count.
  • Oh, you're so right, I should just shut up because I have nothing productive to say. In fact, I might as well go kill myself, because obviously I can't contribute to society at all.

    Geez. Why don't you offer something constructive...or perhaps *you* need to get an education first? Perhaps you're too afraid to put up a reasonable counter-argument?

    To everybody else: I'm sorry about this obviously flammatory post, it's just that kind of post really pisses me off.
  • Linux user dissects Microsoft's 'weak value proposition'

    By Ranger Rick, Slashdot Reader

    THE INTERNET, Worldwide -- Think of it as a burst of cold international rain on the Microsoft parade. In a far-reaching interview this week with himself, Slashdot reader Ranger Rick sounded off on the closed-source operating system, outlining what he considers are fundamental flaws with the Microsoft business model and the OS itself.

    "I see it as more of a threat to Macintosh. Windows is a challenge, a competitor," Rick said. "The more I study Windows, the weaker I think the value proposition is to customers."

    Technical misgivings

    Rick delineated two main technical reasons why he believes Windows will not succeed with corporate customers.

    First, a broad base of support for applications -- especially small, interoperable, easily-customizable, instantly-available applications, with modern internet distributions channels -- is necessary for an operating system to compete in today's market, he said.

    "Five years ago, everything was shrink-wrapped, and the trend since then has been to customize standard shrink-wrapped software for individual business needs," Rick said. A "closed-design" ethos will not work in corporations, he said, where open standards ease interoperability and customizability.

    The second failing, Rick believes, is an extreme level of integration between the OS and its applications. It's a point that touches on ground where holy wars are fought.

    Indeed, some Microsoft advocates say Microsoft's integration of one large codebase with everything in one package is what makes it appealing. Reed disagrees.

    "People want less integration," he said. "They want a choice between tools to use, with an open standard of interoperability. On the server side they want strong queuing and security. This is all done through a comprehensive set of tools that can be customized to their needs, which use open protocols for talking to each other. Microsoft has a high degree of integration, and therefore is more rigid and uncontrollable. Microsoft is basically a big step backward for those two reasons plus others."

    Economies of scale

    Rick next turned to the economics of Microsoft. He said his preliminary cost analysis showed Microsoft actually costs end users more than Linux.

    "We have very little concern we can't compete with Microsoft on a TCO level," Rick said. "We think the total cost of ownership of Linux is lower than NT, but it's still hard to do good TCO studies because at the moment they're hard to compare since a large majority of Linux applications are free and have been developed, debugged, and improved upon for years, while NT supports so few Internet standards out of the box."

    "Let's say, for discussion, they are equally scalable," he said. "And let's assume applications are available for both, and setup time is the same. Given all these factors, the best you could hope for is about the same cost per transaction between servers."

    But Ranger Rick turned that argument on its ear.

    "The problem with that is there are fewer applications available with the base NT install, there's a shaky development road map (with the Windows 2000 release date being pushed back again and again), and there's a higher technical risk in using it," he said. "You could cut NT some slack if it were sharply lower in cost per transaction than Linux, but that's not the case."

    Acknowledging the phenomenon

    Ranger Rick did acknowledge the myriad marketing forces that have propelled Windows NT into the spotlight, to the point that the OS was even featured in major print and online publications.

    Ranger Rick attributed the closed-source hype to a number of factors, including a lack of fairness in media coverage of Windows NT.

    "We're all in the business of wanting the customer to have the information needed to make informed choices," Rick said. "We haven't seen a flavor of NT coverage that addresses that. Some criticalness is needed.

    For example, "some people say positive things about NT when their message is anti-Linux," he said. "But I wonder, in 36 months is this the next [Network Computer] or is it a viable OS? We don't see people question the NT numbers."

    Ranger Rick pointed out that it's hard to track shipments of an open-source platform and its applications when they can be downloaded for free from any number of Web sites. "We feel that 2 to 20 percent of Windows NT shipments turned out to be 'shelfware,'" he said. "From what we can tell, many servers come bundled with Windows and then have Linux installed instead. In fact," he continued, "many supposed Windows NT file and print servers are actually running Linux, and the users can't tell the difference!"

    As for the recent vendor support at Windows conferences, Rick wasn't suprised, adding that the media needs to apply the same critical eye to this trend.

    "Take IBM," he said. "They have long supported multiple OSes on X86. They are fundamentally in the service business. You would expect them to support Windows and Linux. But the deep investment is in services. It's a human investment -- developers, support -- the operating system is irrelevant. You have to separate out what OS they will install if you ask them and what investments they make."

    But Ranger Rick's most passionate argument came on the development, where he said skill and enjoyment is the wild card that many observers have been ignoring.

    "I find it hard to believe that some of the best computer scientists in the world will want to do their work in a stuffy corporate environment, missing deadlines, making code compromises, sitting in meetings," he said. "Without a long-term road map, programmers are free to make the best possible technical decisions, without worrying whether deadlines must be met, and worrying if the marketing department is happy. I have a hard time believing these visionary programmers and developers would get the same satisfaction just being another cog in the machine. I do not believe in that vision of the future."

    But hey, it's competition

    For all its shortcomings, Windows NT is part of a larger competitive landscape in the server realm, Rick said. "In the OS market, a fair person would see extraordinary barriers to competition," he said. "And the competition exists in terms of business model and channel model, and NT is a very interesting case."

    For linux, that's key, since the question of whether it faces "real" competition in the OS market has been a contentious issue.

    Linux has done well in server market share, Muth said, but "we have lots to do in some parts of the market. Take the $100,000 to $1 million server range."

    "There is extraordinary competition," he reiterated. "The market is a rich mosaic of parry and thrust from the vendors, with competing OEM service deals in the way of a free OS marketplace where choice rules. We have to earn our stripes every day. That's how it should be."

  • Haha... gee, uhh... yeah. I think I heard something about that at Slashdot.


  • Exactly.. and its not like M$ had 10,000 integrated apps waiting for them when M$dos and/or win3.0 / 9x went mainstream either. It took a little while for development to build up. But I guess Muth *wasnt paying attention* back then.

    I guess M$ thinks an OS or anything for that matter can just pop up from nowhere and have a ton of integrated apps waiting for it to appear.
  • Regarding shrink wrapped applications, sure, coporate users would probably perfer those over some downloaded from an FTP site, but look at the big distributions today, they come with SO MANY apps. Not only stuff for coders, apps word processors, e-mail readers, and internet stuff. Out-of-the-box Redhat has more apps than Windows. GOOD apps.

    I fail to see how Word to/from Excel integration has anything to do with integration to the OS. Windows has OLE and we've got CORBA, which isn't one big bug like OLE is :P

    Security through integration? Huh?! How much integration can one handle? WinNT has "services" and we have daemons. Not much difference.

    Linux costs more than WinNT? Well, if one considers time = money, then *maybe* for *end users* but not one who knows what he's doing. And, in the end, if it does take longer to *set up* Linux, don't worry, there goes all the blue screens.

    Linux supports so few applications? What an idiot. It supports that small thing called POSIX, it has many of X apps, it has multiple binary support and even has impressive DOS (dosemu) and Windows (wine) support.

    Blah, I don't want to read more.
  • More FUD for the weak-minds of the world...
  • Yeah, business is about earning money. About earning money for *your* company, not earning money for Microsoft (unless, of course, you work for Microsoft, then the two are equivalent). So, while it's in Microsoft's best interest for people to spend lots of money on their bloatware, it isn't in anyone else's best interest to do so...
  • this may well be true...

    Imagine that MS changes the Linux kernel, inserting some "crashing" routines on purpose, and then shows off at the Win2000 launch a computer with the Win2000 and another with the sabotaged Linux...

    MS would make Linux crash and the NT computer would just run along fine (apparently, of course) thus making people think that NT is ACTUALLY better than Linux!
  • by Special J ( 641 )
    This is simple propaganda. Not worth getting up in arms about.

    Our friend Ed Muth is simply fulfilling his duty as Billy's loyal dog and spitting out sweet nothings to make the MSLemmings feel warm and fuzzy. Sit Ed! Roll-over Ed! Good boy.
  • Sure. Even an MS OS can stay up for two years if you don't actually DO anything with it.

    Going to install anything? Reboot. Change settings? Reboot. Install a service pack (I you haven't) ? Reboot.

    Actually RUN an application? Crash! Reboot.
    There's just no way its been up for two years.
    Sorry...I just don't believe you.
  • Sure, the Windows Explorer (with shell integration turned off) may be more stable than gnome running w/ enlightenment.

    But what does that have to do with anything? We're talking SERVERS here, boy, and servers have no place using a GUI in the first place.

    When you can tell me that a web, FTP server or SQL server running on NT is faster and more stable than that same server running on linux... I'll laugh my head off.
  • Posted by Hawaiian Style:

    I see a great battle looming on the horizon.
    This kind of FUD (and the mindless repeating of it by their monkeys at ZDNet) really irritates me... maybe someone should hack their site ??!!

    Linux Links and more:
  • Posted by tollboothwilly:

    The only stripe I'd say MS has earned is the one that runs down the back of that skunk software they pass off as an OS.

    I mean my god. The original Win95 was released in Aug 95 and they just now figured out it may hang after 49.7 days due to a timing algorithm bug [] I'm suprised it only took three years to get a Windows box to stay up that long.

    Relaying this through a linux box thats been up longer than 49.7 days
  • Posted by Hawaiian Style:

    First of all, I was being sarcastic,
    (I would NEVER advocate the mis-use of computers),
    so I actually meant *hack*, as in, FOR FREE, show them how much we will do for nothing. The Works(TM), complete redesign ... nice and pretty.

    Nah, I'm just bored.

    And pissed off.


    and bored.
  • Posted by AnnoyingMouseCoward:

    ...because they haven't discovered sex yet. Saying that something is good because it's popular doesn't prove a thing, just that the general public is too foolish to even realise how it's long term interests are best served.

    It's like saying, "Hitler, Stalin and Mao were all *really* good guys, because they came to power through popular support".

    Sure, right dude. You obviously don't work very much with Microsoft products. If you did, you'd know just how often they blue-screen and die.

    If your going to put non-Microsoft OS's down, then at least have the courtesy to make your insults entertaining and witty. That way, the rest of us could at least get a laugh. In that respect alone, you are *too* lame for words.
  • Posted by AnnoyingMouseCoward:

    Yeah, sure. But lets consider the fact that there is a fundemental difference here.

    Consider the flame wars that periodically errupt over open source issues ( such as GNOME versus KDE ). In many ways, this is very *imature*, but it serves a useful purpose in that the rival groups of partisans then have to put their time and energy where their mouths are ( so that their favorite system becomes progressively better ).

    In short, rivalry and name calling in open source is useful in that it motivates people to go one step furthur.

    Not so with propriatory systems. They just flame anyone that they disagree with, sit on their fat posteriors and do nothing.

    So in this case, arguments over "maturity" aren't really very relevant.
  • Posted by AnnoyingMouseCoward:








    Oh Ghod, you are such a loser! Have you ever read the x88 SQL standard? It was designed to maximise data exchange "...between systems written in COBOL, FORTRAN, PL/I and Pascal...".

    In short, it was designed around languages that were already obsolete when it was drawn up back in 1988.

    Wait, I finally worked it out! You really don't like Microsoft at all! Your really a closet Linux user who's dropped in at /. to convince all of us that anyone and everyone who likes Microsoft has had a lobotomy.

    Ahem! Well, while your intentions are certainly praisworthy, it is a little bit rude of you to be taking such an obvious dig at all of the "mentally challenged" people out there who can't handle anything beyond a "point and drool" interface. Remember, Linux is quite capable of standing on it's own merits, so there really is no need to indulge in this kind of thing.

    If you want to promote Linux, it would probably help if you were to take a more charitable view to those poor and unfortunate individuals who haven't realised yet that there are actual alternatives. Remember - good manners cost you nothing.

  • Posted by wraith-q:


    nuff said
  • Posted by AnnoyingMouseCoward:

    ...but since you have asked a polite question and since you have the conviction to put your name to your words, I will respond.

    Im a profesional programmer with 13+ years of industry experience. I first started programming at university under unix on a PDP-11/60 twenty years ago.

    In short, I've been around. I've used Unix, CMP, Apple II, MS-DOS, Windows 3.1/95 and now I'm moving into Linux.

    You are perfectly correct - money is everything. As an old drinking buddy of mine uesed to say to me at university

    "Money talks, bullshit walks!"

    This is the whole reason why so many people ( including the Fortune-500 companies ) are migrating their systems across to FreeBSD/Linux.

    They are satisfied with the current level of technology. They don't give a damn about making life any easier than it already is for their staff.

    In short, they don't want more capabilities for the same ammount of money.

    They want the same capabilities for less money.

    A constant ( high ) cost operating system is therfore un-acceptable to the manufacturing/primary industry sector.

    So while all the accountents out there might love Microsoft, it doesn't matter. Money is *indeed* what it's all about and that's why Microsoft is going to fall. The financial big guns are out to make money for themselves - not Microsoft.
  • Posted by tid242:

    hm.... a company owned by a M$ subsidiary (sp?) that ranks linux as faster than NT in regards to NT's own prococal.

    you know something's up there....

  • Somebody must die!

    Microsoft would be a good start.. Using my name like that.. bastards
  • I do want to be able to move an Image from my File Manager to my Word Processor and Move a chart from Excel. Everyone does. Linux can do this, but it takes days of downloading and compiling and tweaking. It's fun to geeks, but who wants that besides them? People want a product that's easy. Buy it, pop in the CD, install, and go. Not downloading 20 tgz's and compiling all day to get buggy Gnome running which uses so much cpu I might as well be using Windows. I like the challange unix brings. That's why I use FreeBSD. It's fun. Linux is not a solution for the desktop. I find that funny. It's going to take a lot more then Gnome and KDE to make Linux even clode to a desktop viable solution. Linux has no direction really as I see it. It's just a unix os that was in the right place at the right time. I hope I get lots of flames from all you Linux Kiddies.

    "Users of FreeBSD sit back in the shadows, know they have an OS that actually WORKS.

  • This is why Linux will go no WHERE. It's all these kids and they can say is... "Linux rules! Windows Sucks! YEAH!" About 0.0001% of people actually have valid arguments against Windows and What not.
  • I don't trust it. It might be that 200000 people use Windows and boot into linux for 4 minutes. That's dumb and I think that chart is a sham.
  • FreeBSD is not a good desktop os. FreeBSD is just what I use. I never said it was better. I just said I used it. Windows is a better Desktop OS then FreeBSD too.
  • ...infest the threads of this page, I'll take a potshot at Muth too. There's a men's clothier whose slogan is/was "An educated consumer is our best customer". As personal computing becomes a wider and more mature activity, maybe more and more consumers will free themselves of the need for a broad base of support for applications -- especially off-the-shelf, shrink-wrapped applications [Muth's words]. Maybe "FTP" and "tarball" (and "RPM") will become part of the common vocabulary, just as "e-mail", "modem", and "browser" are now. And then Muth can move on to Proctor & Gamble or something.

    Of course, Phineas T Barnum offers a dissenting voice: "There's a sucker born every minute". There's still a vast market for refried Osmond Brothers, i.e. Hanson, the Backstreet Boys and others of that ilk. Maybe MS needn't worry at all.


  • just for the sake of clarity:

    sed: Stream EDitor
    ls: LiSt
    grep: Get Regular Expression Pattern

    seems mnemonic enough to me...

    Only for English-speakers.


  • why would i want my best work stuffed away in some
    proprietary box instead of being shared with the
    world and have far more exposure and use?

    what makes him think he knows how the best coders
    think? he seems to only see the value of software
    in the money it can make!
  • 1)Ignore the competitor, at least publicly.

    2)Come out swinging - tell everyone how useless/bad/undesirable the cometing product is

    3) Announce a product that "Has all the features only better!"

    4) Release a crappy me-too copy (unless the competitor has been purchased by this time).

    5) Release an improved, almost workable me-too copy. But this time Embrace and Extend (TM). Competitor begins to wither.

    Interesting thing is, I don't know how MS could pull off Act 3 this time! Can't wait to see where this is going...
  • 'I suppose SGI, IBM, and so on, are making a benevolent contribution to the self proclaimed "linux community"?'

    I suspect Corel, at least, is driven in part by Larry Ellison's personal dislike for Bill Gates. But hey, if we get more open source (in the case of Corel, mostly Wine) out of it...
  • "Regarding shrink wrapped applications, sure, corporate users would probably prefer those over some downloaded from an FTP site"

    Actually, I think corporate users would like to have access to the source, and generally could have just one person do the build. If you use an application a lot, then each bug costs you appreciably and the advantage to being able to fix it yourself (possibly by hiring someone to fix it) is significant.

    What companies do like, I think, is having a company behind the software that is motivated to fix most of the bugs and to do further development. So a company that allows people to see and modify their source -- even if they can't distribute it or reuse it in other apps -- is probably close to optimal for most businesses.

    Also, more and more companies are getting fast internet connections. To them, a download may in fact be preferable to having to arrange a purchase or send someone out to buy a program.
  • A fundamental flaw to Muth's whole thinking is calling this "work." For many of us, programming projects of our own choice (as opposed to those assigned by an employer) are play, not work. And people will play for free.

    Obligatory Star Wars (Empire Strikes Back) quote:
    Luke: "I -- I don't believe it!"
    Yoda: "That... is why you fail."

    And of course, there are others who get paid who will improve the tools they're working with. I've found that employers are often more willing to pay more in salary than to buy productivity-enhancing tools.
  • Whoops, am I getting my companies wrong? Ellison is CEO of Oracle...
  • I gaurunteeee! Seriously, though. What should we expect from the mouth of Sauron? It's kinda like asking Gobbels if Hitler was a nice fella. "Why, shit, yes!" would be the reply. Muth is clueless technically. He's reading a prepared script. He'd be saying the same thing about Sears' brand of washer or dryer as opposed to GE's if he were working for Sears.
  • Actually, plain old talent can win out in the end. Not that I think that Microsoft's lawyers have shown much talent, but they have managed to do enough damage control to keep their witnesses from getting tossed in jail for contempt or charged with perjury. Considering some of the things they've said, that's no small feat :)

    I have been extremely impressed by David Boies though. I've read through quite a few days worth of trial transcripts and I like the way he works. They never see it coming, or if they do, they can't do anything to stop it. It makes perfect sense really. Get them to admit to a few things, then hit them with the tough questions and watch them start to backtrack and contradict and correct themselves. Makes for few laughs sometimes too.

  • I HIGHLY doubt that ANY NT machine can stay up for 2 years without a reboot, let alone TWO of them. Let's see, what version of NT was out two years ago? You must be running a pretty old version of NT since you can't upgrade without rebooting. Heck, you can't even install most software without rebooting. Quite frankly, I don't buy it. Those machines would have to be doing next to nothing to stay up for anything near that length of time. I think you're just a troll who is fibbing.

  • I didn't know Plato was a Linux person. They didn't teach us that in school. I think it's time to revise the curriculum. :)

  • Actually it was NT 3.5 with service pack 3 that was certified on (I believe) 3 different hardware configurations. Everything else you said looks correct though :)

    I have to agree with you on the Ed Curry issue. He really got screwed over bad. For Microsoft, the truth has always been a touchy thing, best left to "behind closed doors" discussions rather than something to be known publicly. Unfortunately, that's also the way that much of the government is run. It's not surprising that they are taking sides with Microsoft. To put it plainly, something stinks.

    The government, and the military in particular, have been switching entire installations over to Microsoft OSes and software illegally. Congress has already ruled that a couple of these transitions were illegal, but didn't do anything about it because it would cost more money to change them to something else now that they've been switched over to NT networks. From what I've read, there were no consequences for anyone. I've also read that there are more of these conversions still going on and that they will probably continue because the government won't put a stop to it. I'd like to know who is making the money off of these deals besides Microsoft. Somebody has to be making alot of money or this wouldn't be happening.

  • Here is a link I found on the Rainbow books. []

  • Ah yes, kamikaze. Unfortunately Ed isn't that great of a pilot; he overshot by a thousand yards and plowed into Bill's new house.
  • No serious apps of any scale that requires stability and flexibility should be written with VB. Check out this page that I originally wrote for my team: DLL Hell []

    That was VB5 and I'd rather poke my eyes with a jagged skewer first before touching VB6.
  • by ninjaz ( 1202 )
    Fuck Microsoft.

    This "structure" you speak of sounds like a warm fuzzy way of saying "forced down your throat & proprietary". There is plenty of money to be made by supporting systems that operate well and and comply with open standards. In fact, that's what I do at my job, every day. :)

    Besides, if I'm in the business to make money, what have I to gain by overpaying for shoddy product?

  • Dear Sengan,

    Corba is a development framework. Dragging barcharts is an application feature. If there was an app using Corba to drap and drop, then you could make a connection between the two but not now.

    > I find it hard to believe that some of the best
    > computer scientists in the world will want to do
    > their work for free

    People who code for money know how to get jobs. People who code for free know how to code.
  • M$ was founded by Bill Gates

    Minor Point: M$ was founded by Paul Allen in Albuquerque, NM. He asked his lil' buddy Bill to join him. Bill dropped out of school, moved to NM, and then proceeded to get in trouble for his bad driving habits. :)
  • [...]

    grep: Get Regular Expression Pattern

    Um, no. FOLDOC [] says that it comes from the ed (Ed is the Standard Editor!) command `"g/re/p", where re stands for a regular expression, to Globally search for the Regular Expression and Print the lines containing matches to it'. Some Unix commands are poorly named -- that's why most shells have support for aliasing./p>

  • Microsoft claims that they can't be a monopoly, because they only have a tiny share of the "Super-insanely-expensive-multi-terra-of-ram-monst er-server" Market. Truth of the matter is that NT (and definately 9x) is not scalable to that level of operating. NT's solution to everything is "throw another box at it." Here, where I work, we have aproximately 400 users total over a wan. At each location there is an NT box which services aproximately 10 - 25 users each. (PII 400, 512 Megs of Ram 9 gig drive et al). That's fine for the small branches, and I'd have to say for a small workgroup, NT is fine and dandy. Lets then look at our main office. 300 or so users. First, we have a box that's just the PDC (Primary Domain Controller). Its job it to make the Network Neighborhood look all nice and tidy and make the NT boxes see each other. How cute. This is a PII 300 with 1 gig of RAM. Crashes now and again, but overall not too bad. Then we have the Exchange server. Its a Alpha, pretty speedy, but I don't know the exact specs. I kinda remember something about 400+ Mhz and 2 gigs of RAM. Web server - P200 with 512 Megs of RAM. 2 BDC's (backup domain controller). These kick in if/when the PDC blows, and allow people to login to the domain when the main server gets lagged. Main file server (2 of these) actually house the files. Now, all totaled, we're looking at like 15 boxes to serve webpages, mail, and files to 300 users. Sounds like a good use of hardware to me.
  • Man, themes silly words, so I KNOW your joking..
  • There is more to life then money sir, and the sooner you realize this, the better off you will be. I would prefer to make a far lower salary working on and coding for linux, then to be stuck fixing and coding for M$. There ARE people in this world, believe it or not, who do not agree with the Redmond philosophy that Money determines your self worth. What a wonderful world this would be if greed and money weren't used as the deciding factor on a person's character. Personally, I find Mr. Gates, and all the other country club, CEO, trust fund babies rather disgusting. Im not sure i could live with myself knowing my anual income was greater then the wealth of 3rd world countries. Im couldn't sleep at night, in a house, far beyond my needs, with 60+ bedrooms knowing that there were people in this world happy to find a dry alley to sleep for the night. So, no sir, i do not care about money, and no, i do not agree with the Redmond philosophy. And it is rather disturbing that so many people in this world do.

    *Sniff* That was... beautiful. I've don't usually do this, but...

    <AOL> Me too! </AOL>

    Seriously, I wish more people thought and acted like this. What disturbs me the most about America is too many "yuppies" -- you know, the kind of people who live in suburbs, drive SUV's, play golf at the country club every weekend, own a $2,000,000 home, and maybe give $100 to charity every two or three months. So reading your post, Mr. "dev/null", was like a breath of fresh air. Thank you, and I hope I meet more people like you.

  • I would argue that Linux is both young AND old at the same time: the Linux kernel itself has only been around for 9 years, but it's based on Unix, which has been around since the 1970's. So the "age" of Linux is pretty much irrelevant; it owed a lot of its rapid success to the fact that there were a lot of Unix gurus out there who were able to help out, and that the GNU software was easily ported (once Linus got gcc working, the rest of GNU was (relatively) easy, I imagine).

    If you want to look at a really new OS, check out the Extremely Reliable Operating System [] (a.k.a. the EROS project). It's not ready for users yet, but if want to hack on a new OS, the pre-release [] might be just what you're looking for.

  • Hey, have any of you noticed something about this particular AC? He's posted the *EXACT SAME THING* (spelling mistakes and all) on all the recent Microsoft discussions. Go back and search through old Microsoft articles for yourself: notice "trail" instead of "trial" and "PED" instead of "QED". This guy blitzed out an astroturf (note "good for the consumer", "innovative and bright people" -- obvious Microsoft buzzwords) post and is pasting it in every time he sees a Microsoft discussion.

    This guy's a Microsoft employee doing the "astroturf" campaign. Ignore him.
  • I'm almost certain I've seen *this* post before, too! "I would given a medal..." [sic]. This is another copy&paste troll. He's submitted the same thing multiple times before, AFAIR (As Far As I Recall).

    Whatever. People have already answered this one. I'm not even going to bother.
  • Unfortunately, your vision of the "real world" seems to parallel a certain cable television program far more closely than reality.

    You did get one thing right though. Microsoft is all about money, and that's the problem. If MS can get away with foisting poor products on it's customers while continuing to make money, it's darn well going to do it. And that is exactly what it has been doing, in addition to doing everything it can to keep any potential competitors out of the market. Where's the incentive to put out a quality product? With almost no competition and loads of people stupid enough to put up with poor software, poor support (how many times have people called MS tech support to report a bug and paid MS for the service?), and the MS upgrade cycle, MS will continue to make record profits. And as long as the bottom line is not in danger, there's no reason to change it's business tactics.

    So where does that leave us? Well, since Microsoft has blocked nearly every commercial route to the market, the free software community is the only way to put MS in check. Personally, I think the commercial software industry has been out in la-la land for so long, that when people finally start to get a dose of the reality (free software, with paid support), it's the free software community that's percieved as being strange. that's perceived as being strange, when, in fact, the commercial software world is the one not based in reality. At least, I haven't heard Microsoft claim it's prices are high to cover piracy in a while, that's one of the silliest things I've ever heard.

  • It was NT 3.51 that was certified C2 secure. They never had it re-evaluated for NT4. I find it hilarious that the C2 certification is still bandied about for an OS that you can't even buy any more...

  • Read the script:

    MyWindowsMate: Linux, is shit shit shit. It's the spawn of satan. Windows is the OS of the Holy.
    Me: I don't believe you. Can I come round to your house and check it out (turn it to the dark side)?
    MyWindowsMate: Yes, I've got this web browser which is so much better than Netscape. It gets Service Packs all the time.

    I went round to his house, he ran Windows for me and put on this web browser (I can't remember the name but it's adventurous). Less than one minute and it brought the computer to life, which then proceeded to eat all his children, splattering blood everywhere.

    MyWindowsMate: never usually becomes demonic
    Me: Do you actually make sacrifices to this infernal machine?
    MyWindowsMate: No, but I installed Service Pack 1.
    Me: Do you ever see a shining halo above your computer?
    MyWindowsMate:, but it's holier than the Angel Gabriel.

    Conclusion: BOLLOCKS, If I used windows as much as I used Linux then I would have it opening portals to the nether world allowing demons through every minute. Windows is evil. Fact. Programs released are all version 6.66. Fact.


    ps. This really happened.


  • At least 5 times I've tried opening a file in Word from a floppy disk with bad sectors (obviously I didn't know it at the time). NT 4 WorkStation, SP3. Result: BSOD.



  • *sigh*. The important thing here is this: on a Windows box, after the Gimp crashed, the entire OS would have died. The Gimp isn't Linux, however much you'd like it to be.

  • They can't beat Linux on total cost of ownership so they say that cost per transaction is the most important thing. If that were the case everybody in the world would be running Solaris on an E10k.. In any case OS cost per transaction -> 0 as transactions gets large it's seven figure hardware costs and big support costs that bite you.

    Cost of NT is an extremely big issue in a medium scale server application and using it in a large scale server application is idiotic since it does not scale very well and doesn't come close to running on Big Iron (Linux doesn't run on Big Iron either but it will before NT does). Linux beats NT where it counts, cost and reliability in serving NT domains and medium scale server aps on PC hardware. Add the ability of Linux to run more varied and cheaper hardware and you have a clear winner in the server world. I can see how MS could be smug about the user side for a while longer but they're losing the server side now to a supperior product.

  • I think breaking them up would be too unweildy of a hammer. I would like to see transparent pricing and fully documented API's. Let the market take care of the rest.
  • Exactly how is calling Linux a "Kiddy OS" any different then the sometimes childish things Linux advocates say. In my experience I have seen many lucid expositions of Linux's strengths on a technical basis but few such expositions of Microsoft's strengths from Microsoft advocates. The only counter example I can think of that clearly argues a _technical_ advantage of MS was the CS professor who wrote about the fundamental scalability of NT's internals. and pointed out some problems with Linux 's internals. I have respect for that, although I would have more respect if it meant something in practice.

    I do not have much respect for monkeys on either side but they don't bother me much as long as I have the choice to choose what is best for my own use.
  • by copito ( 1846 )
    If trolling were a word it would not be used in the context you used it.. Do yourself a favor troll [] an read the dictionary [].

    While you're at it shatter your illusions of MS-DOS [].

    In response to your opinion that the IBM PC was far more advanced than the Apple ][. I respectfully disagree. The Apple had much better graphics capabilities, BASIC in the shell and was cooler overall. The PC took off not because of DOS, which, let's face it, is a no brainer of an OS, but because of programs like VisiCalc and because the bare exposure of the hardware made it easy to write games. Microsoft is right in one thing, apps attract users and users attract apps. Too bad that doesn't work in the server environment where far fewer apps are needed and the big costs are support and downtime. For a server you need a real OS []
  • I applaud your analysis
  • You forgetting that since the trial, all internal e-mail is forbidden. Try going around telling this to 25,000
    people ....

    Couldn't they just use their brain-zappers? 8-?)

  • Hell I'm Austrlian and I defiantly don't want them.
  • ZDNN is carrying a version of the article []. This version allows you to add comments. I've got the second one up there [], and there's a comment from Alan Cox [] (supposedly), too. I'd encourage some of you to write respectable comments to this version of the article.
  • Yeah, FreeBSD is dead, which *EXACTLY* why yahoo,, and hotmail are all using it, and why 3.1 just got released. Cripes. Some of you morons really need to get out into the world a little more...

  • *munch munch munch*


    Nope, still as unsatisfying as all the other FUD out there. Keep trying guys, I'm sure you'll get it eventually!


  • Linux does provide little value. To Microsoft, that it. That's the only way they see "value" anymore; what they can get out of it. And you've got to admit, from that standpoint Linux has no value; what can M$ get out of it? Nothing.

    Perhaps, also, they mean raw monetary value. And once again, they're right: Linux provides very little monetary value. But it's not because of the things M$ said about it. It's because Linux has grown up according to an economic model so fundamentally different from anything which Microsoft has ever encountered (in particular the abscence of monetary compensation, or money in any form) that they can't really be expected to comprehend it. This is a Good Thing, because it means when M$ falls, they'll be caught completely off-guard. And I, for one, would love to see the look on Billy's face when he realizes that.
  • ...away anything that microsoft currently has to offer. What other os can run so many server functions of half the memory required to run the same functions on a NT server. The last time I assisted in the setup of a Back Office server, It took up 85% of system resources with one person loged on and only idle processes running in the background.

    I know of a Linux server that coughed up a major hairball and still survived. It one day decided to spawn 300 copies of a sendmail application. People were able to get to the files on the server with no slowdown, people were getting thier mail and internet just fine. In fact the only reason this problem was discovered was when the admin logged on locally and noticed the slow login. One issuance of the killall command, and a bit of re-configuring the sendmail app later, the machine went on for several more weeks till it had to be rebooted for a kernel update. Lets see M$ NT do that.
  • And why should exposure be a better motivation that money to somebody that doesn't need an ego boost?

    What else would I need money for then to boost my ego?
    I mean, we're not talking about making a living here. If you're a good programmer you will be able to make a living in the next couple of years without much problems.

    To be happy with what you do you need someone who tells you that it's good. And you will get the most honest responses if people can see what you've written.

  • If it comes to slim, reliable production systems, wheres NT?

    -command-line based administration
    -instant scripting

    Let those M$ weenies go with M$-Office, but when it comes to servers, nobody who ever managed to find out how Unix really works (including BSD, Linux), will go the way back to NT.
  • Whoo! It's getting warm in here!

    3 months ago, this would have concerned me.
    Today this is just pure amusement.

    Burn baby burn!

    As long as each individual is facing the TV tube alone, formal freedom poses no threat to privilege.
  • Maybe we could key their cars and burn dog doo on their porches, too.

    As long as each individual is facing the TV tube alone, formal freedom poses no threat to privilege.
  • I buy a $1 Million server, and then run out and buy Microsoft's "Just Like Daddy's" server OS to use on it?

    While I'm at it I'll go have my Jaguar painted at Earl Sheib.

    As long as each individual is facing the TV tube alone, formal freedom poses no threat to privilege.
  • Right-click RPM file, click install.

    My God, that nearly killed me!

    As long as each individual is facing the TV tube alone, formal freedom poses no threat to privilege.
  • So work as a pornographer, or make snuff films.
    Maybe you could be a lawyer that defends insurance companies against 5-year-old cancer patients.

    I mean God, doesn't your conscience bother you?

    As long as each individual is facing the TV tube alone, formal freedom poses no threat to privilege.
  • It's good to see that Microsoft has sharpened your technical knowledge as much as your grammar.

    I thought trolls only lived under bridges?

  • I fail to understand what he means by Linux costing more than NT per transaction.
    Does he mean Support? Could someone please enlighten me?

    Unfortunatly, Mr. Muth has absolutly nothing new to say short of "Linux sucks! NT Rules!"

    I'm not the least bit worried. It will be interesting to see what becomes of him
    when Windows 2000 is released and is deemed a failure shortly after. I'll bet Microsoft's
    answer will be "He was low level employee..."

  • by Po ( 3303 )
    >> A "design-by-community" ethos will not work in corporations, he said, where even highly customized applications such as ERP systems include much shrink-wrapped technology.

    But it helps sooo much when you're confronted by twenty years worth of heterogenous, incompatible, and back-assward systems that are piled on top of each other (many of them Microsoft's own messess, although the ODT3 is a close second to Win3).

    ERP systems have to be cross-platform in order to succeed. (I mean, like, duh!) Shrink-wrap has nothing to do with it; if the ERP design scope isn't flexible enough to encompass a truly diverse environment, what does that say about the designer's concept of "enterprise?" Having the source available to the community goes a lot farther to fixing those problems instead of just re-framing the question as "what are you running if you're not running NT?"

    Not a first post.

  • Indeed, and I will help MicroSoft make the move to any of the above countries with a swift boot to the posterior. You MS flunkies just don't get it do you? MicroSoft is irrelevant, in fact I challenge you to come up with a single task to be done on a computer that can only be done via MicroSoft software. Believe me, we don't need MicroSoft and threats about them leaving the country are about as frightening as Michael Bolton threatening to cease releasing music. I have never in my life met a top quality programmer who had any affection for anything MicroSoft - *never*, they are the purveyors of crufty, inelegant apis and bloaware - should they choose to depart my only response would be "good riddance". By the way, should you be prepared to claim "I'm a top quality programmer and I love MicroSoft" be aware that I have interviewed on the order of 100 developers in the last year and I shall subject your claim to serious scrutiny.
  • I have gone back and forthe between the
    "real world" and school sreval times. I did grow
    up as a white upper middel class kid with
    privlige, but I have also been to pore to thke the
    buss. Do I care about "MONEY"? Not more then I
    care about freedome and not fucking over othere
    people and the world we live in. Have you evere
    stoped to ask you self what the "real world" is
    who defines it and who it serves? I think you will
    find if you do that the people who define it are
    the ones that it serves. The real world is we make
    it and I chose to try to make it one where bullys
    don't win and every on hase equla fredome and equality.
  • Actually, it was NT 3.50 that was certified at an Orange Book C2 level on a specific hardware platform (I don't remember just what platform).

    There are many different publications from the National Computer Security Center. The Orange Book (properly called "Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria") is used for NCSC's Trusted Product Evaluation Program (TPEP). The Orange Book only addresses single-system security. In an effort to extend Orange Book evaluation classes to networked systems NCSN published the Red Book ("Trusted Network Interpretation of the Trusted computer System Evaluation Criteria"). The Red book is used for TPEP network evaluation. No Microsoft OS has ever been put through this evaluation, so far as I know.

    There are many other color books, such as the Lavender Book for trusted database management systems, the Venice Blue Book for security subsystems, the Pink Book for the Rating Maintenance Phase Program (this is what Microsoft should have been working with to extend the C2 rating to later versions of NT), and the Purple book for formal verification systems.

    You can find out more about these sorts of things in the O'Reilly book "Computer Security Basics," by Deborah Russell and G. T. Gangemi Sr.

    Finally, the man who sheperded NT through the formal security evaluation process is Ed Curry. For his efforts and his attempts to play by the rules both the Federal gov't and Microsoft laid down, Microsoft destroyed his consulting firm and put him and his family in a precarious financial position. He's still trying to make sure the government knows the exact status of NT security, but seems to be meeting with substantial counter-efforts by both Microsoft and (oddly enough) the Feds themselves. Do a web search for Ed Curry, familiarize yourself with the issues, and help him in whatever way seems best; I advise helping however Ed asks for help. It's in all our best interests to keep the government open to the truth. (Apologies to non-US readers.)

    Doug Loss
  • this is fine example of possible content of in case MS is the owner

    i think, death cries of so called "best software firm in the world" just begins :)

  • Next stop: we win.


    GPL Win32 UNDER RICO!!
  • Hello????? This is reality calling. You have no idea what you are talking about. Activex (and OLE IIRC) is a propriatary Microsoft invented technology which isn't very impressive and has absolutely NOTHING to do with being a server.
  • talk to this guy and ask him what it is like to get paid to lie for a living. Talk about a lack of morals. Falsehoods are all we ever hear from him and it makes me _seriously_ angry both at Microsoft, and at Mr. Muth.
  • Not that I have anything against FreeBSD, but you just compared Gnome to Windows, decided that Windows has a better interface, and concluded from this that FreBSD is better than Linux. How did you get to talking about FreeBSD? I am using Gnome on a system that could never support Win95/98.

    BTW, I use Linux and it works, so I assume from your last comment that you were refering to windows as not working. If it was Linux you were refering to, then you simply sound bitter to me.

    Good day.
  • When Microsoft began touting Linux as an alternative to Windows in their case with the DOJ, they didn't believe their own words. Now they are trying to backpeddle. It's fun to watch Microsoft try to convince the DOJ that Linux is competition and, simultaneously, convince customers that it isn't.
    Even more fun since huge numbers of people are starting to see that it really is more competition than Microsoft will be able to handle.
  • Having worked in both corporate and small business America - I've seen a wide variety of OS. A few have different advantages over others in different arenas, but the point of the article wasn't NT's superiority over Linux - it was aimed at breaking the wave of publicity and the surge of popularity that Linux has been experiencing by telling the world what Microsoft thinks the world should want.

    It's infuriating which is why a lot of us get upset, but the world will make up it's own mind eventually. If they want to live in mediocrity, so be it. The rest of us who know a better way will use it, whether it's Linux or BeOS or whatever is up to us.

    I love freedom of choice.
  • You are absolutely right. Intuitive is what you are used to. Everyone talks about ease of use, but no one seems to be able to define it and justify the definition outside the framework of an existing platform. My personal opinion is that ease of use should be defined as consistency across applications for common functions and features. The justification is that something is easy to use if you don't have to learn anything new in order to use it. So, if applications have a lot of similarities then the user will be able to start using it quickly and therefore that applciation mst be easy to use.

    This has already happened with most GUI applications. Common functions are almost always found in the same menus and operate the same way across applications. The file menu is a good example of this. This really isn't an operating system issue, but a style issue. The operating system or actually the GUI system can come into play as an enforcer of style, but it is the consistent style not the operating system that makes the computer easy to use. This is why Mr Muth claims integration is an ease of use feature it is how Windows enforces style. The only thing is he is mixing up method with result. The ease of use feature is extending the copy, cut, paste skills that everyone learns, to work across applications and with more than just text across those apps. Method is only imprtant to the programmer not the user.
  • just for the sake of clarity:

    sed: Stream EDitor
    ls: LiSt
    grep: Get Regular Expression Pattern

    seems mnemonic enough to me...

  • I dunno, I thought the same thing when I read it. Considering the fact that Microsoft named Linux as a competitor in their antitrust trial, and the fact that said trial is still going on, why is this guy coming out and saying, essentially, "Microsoft does not see Linux as a competitor"? Honestly, one would think that Microsoft would at least clarify their position on Linux within the company so as not to have multiple conflicting statements made..

    -mike kania
  • Ok, you received them "free," but the OEM you bought it from paid for it, and you can be sure that at least part of that cost was passed on to you, the consumer.

    -mike kania
  • Argh. This is the type of post that completely pisses me off. If you're going to refute his claims, tell us what exactly makes you think that his claims are invalid instead of just telling us they are. If you don't support your position, it becomes just as weak as the position you're trying to tell us is so bad.

    -mike kania
  • Is this the best Microsoft can do to head off competition? If their best involves reiterating outdated, long-since-disproven criticisms, they're in serious, and I mean serious trouble.

    Linux is, frankly, past the stage where simple FUD tactics will stop its momentum. This seems to be common knowledge for everyone outside Redmond.

    Still, I hope Muth believes his own rhetoric, and that his opinion represents the mainstream thinking at Microsoft. Such head-in-the-sand mindsets will make Linux's success that much easier.

    (Remove "x"'s from

  • Right, right. We should give corporations free reign. They'll do what's best for all of us (although the U.S. was founded on the notion that power corrupts -- but I guess this only applies to government power) if we just leave them alone.

    Cold dose of reality -- success isn't the issue. Breaking laws that exist for good reason is the issue. You can't just do whatever you want -- in business, or personal life. That's called anarchy, and most philosophers I know of seem to think its a bad thing. I tend to agree.

    (Remove "x"'s from

Sigmund Freud is alleged to have said that in the last analysis the entire field of psychology may reduce to biological electrochemistry.