Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?
Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! No Flash necessary and runs on all devices. ×

~50% of Compaq Server Customers Using Linux 121

newt writes "The Australian's Technology section is carrying a story from Compaq which claims that 50% of Compaq server customers are using Linux. As a result of increasing use, Compaq is beefing up its Linux support infrastructure and unveiling new Linux service offerings similar to the support offered for "mainstream" operating systems. "
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

~50% of Compaq Server Customers Using Linux

Comments Filter:
  • 50 people (or maybe 10 people 5 times) will say that the strength of Linux in the server market is insignificant because Windows still rules the desktop, and will provide a number of reasons why they think this is, and will continue to be, the case.

    So instead of reading all those messages, read this one instead,

  • It seems that no matter what a computer person may say the real decision will finally come from the management! This may be a point to debate on but i am sure that most people will agree that the management still has some control over software to be used. Hencs, by having Compaq support Linux the way they are is a good thing!!!

    BUT.... i would like to know from you all *exactly* how much control does managment have ?
    Cause all Compaq is doing is selling linux to the suits... or at least thats what i see!

  • Never mind that my friend who works at Compaq says he wouldn't buy one of their computers for himself. And I know a business that bought a network setup from Compaq, about 20-25 Celeron machines...and the damn things had NO FANS!!!

    hey, maybe Compaq machines just work that much better with Linux, but the hardware is still kinda questionable.
  • That Compaq's customer base is much wider than most other 'PC' companies and many of them have long standing, decades long, experience with Unix ..... Unix was developed on Compaq (aka DEC) computers ....
  • these are the things we need to see - linux becoming a "commercially viable alternative" to nt. the public needs to see them too. on microsoft's site, there's a page ("Linux Myths") which is of course the normal FUD that we expect from them, but it's written very well - read: persuasive to newcomers. with ~50% of compaq servers running linux...well, they're not doing it because it's a poor alternative. things like this need to be cast into the light so the public can see them.
  • Most of the Linux systems are provided by Red Hat, which is part-owned by Compaq.

    I didn't know this. Does Compaq own a lot of RedHat or does it own some shares of RedHat, thus I could say that since I own shares of RedHat, I'm a part owner ;)

    Actually, I lied, I don't (not yet) own any shares of RedHat. I'm a little strapped for cash.

    Steven Rostedt
  • Makes for enteresting reading when you combine it with these statements made by Pfeiffer earlier today.
  • Compaq desktop machines (crap) do not represent the quality of their servers. A Compaq Proliant is a great server.

    Their desktop machines are cheap and zero-administration-rigged like all the other "business" desktops now. Real developers get nice dual Xeon Dell machines, human resources can use their neutered Compaq machines.
  • I've notice that in my company, the techies have say over a few things that they do. Thus the first level managers listen and supply them a little of what they need. But when a large number of techies are asking for the same thing, the upper management starts to notice.

    I was asked by one manager if I heard of "Linux" and he was shocked that I already had it running on my terminal!

    Steven Rostedt
  • most major computer makers do not use CPU fans.. they use large heat sinks and design the case to blow some air from another fan onto the heat sink.
  • by mochaone ( 59034 ) on Monday November 08, 1999 @06:13PM (#1551085)
    The timing of this announcement disturbs me.

    On friday, MS is ruled a monopoly and the Judge asserts that MS has no competition in the PC market.

    On monday, Compaq releases a statement indicating that Linux accounts for 50% of its server setup.

    Compaq is MS' biggest corporate customer. MS uses Compaq computers in its corporate systems.

    Does something sound fishy here?
  • Mr Pathmanaban said many customers had told him they would use Linux if Compaq could support it.

    Exactly... Support it, and they will come... Granted, Linux support outdoes Microsoft support royally. However, most people don't know about Newsgroups, and other forums in which to voice opinions... Also, they don't feel that they can trust them. Seriously, if I just bought a computer, why would I think that Joe Random I just met on the newsgroup really wants to help me fix my problem, and not format my hard drive. It's a paranoid world, and that paranoia, coupled with FUD, keeps users away.

    Technical staff, rather than management, were particularly keen to deploy the system, he said. Duh... That almost certainly goes without saying. Management really doesn't care what is used. They like Microsoft because that's what everyone else is using. Now that they realize the potential pricing disasters that tag along with Win2K, they're happy to entertain other notions. As long as their techs reassure them that it'll be okay.

    Side note for management: If your techs like something, there's a reason. Start listening for chrissake...

    Data#3, GE Capital IT Solutions and Avnet/Integrand have signed up to offer the programs. Jumping on the bandwagon? Some might say so... I feel that they have simply been shown that it can work for big business... Companies are starting to realize that they don't necessarily have to rely on other big businesses to turn a profit, or at least, that they won't lose popularity for doing so.

    It's my opinion that the MSvsDOJ trial is building a lot of this momentum (not flame, just one man's opinion), and that by publicizing what businesses have known all along, it makes the users less likely to say "Well, why aren't you using something more popular, like NT?"

    Anyway, that's just my brief take on the matter... If I'm screwed up, lemme know.

  • by Michael Woodhams ( 112247 ) on Monday November 08, 1999 @06:17PM (#1551088) Journal
    Note that the story does *not* say that 50% of servers delivered by Compaq have Linux installed. It simply says that 50% of the organizations that buy a server from Compaq have at least one Linux box.
  • Being forced to use Compaq servers at work (Novell and NT), I am glad that they are going to be upping the support a little bit. Back in 1998, I tried everything I could to get Linux to boot up on a few of our servers, but I could get no kernel to recognize the RAID arrays. Multiple posts to newsgroups and extensive web searches turned up absolutely nothing.

    Some time later, I received an e-mail with a URL that had some information from Compaq on their support of Linux. It was still in the preliminary stages, everything was unsupported, but it was a start. I haven't checked back recently, but I'm glad to see they have finally seen the potential market.

    In the interim, I have been forbidden from using Linux on any machine connected to the corporate network... Politics, politics. We are a big Sun shop (on the Unix side), and any mention of a free operating system seems to bring down the wrath of God at work. Although I have been running Linux on my desktop for months, and my laptop for the past month, any thought of actually putting it on a server has been lost for the time being.

    I hope that this will add a bit of legitimacy to what I have been trying to do at work.

    As an aside - I am stuck using Netscape for mail at work, and it identifies itself as running on Linux whenever I send out a message. I have checked everything I could think of, but I have not found out how to change this to make it look like I am sending from an NT box. I did a hex edit on the binary, and I am assuming that it uses a uname call to get the OS. Anyone have any ways to change this, short of running sendmail and an elaborate perl script to send via IMAP?
  • Gosh; for a system that Microsoft has so 'convincingly proved' (spit) to be slower and less efficient than Windows NT, people sure seem to be switching to it in droves. Funny how that works, hmm? One would almost think that the Microsoft-funded tests didn't reflect reality; but we know that can't be right...

    When it comes to the desktop, all sorts of factors come into play when choosing an OS. But in the server field, the decision-making process is usually much narrower; how much speed and reliability can platform X deliver, and for what cost? Unix has always has the edge performance-wise; but commercial Unix implementations were often pricey, and the companies I've worked for have found recruiting experienced Unix administrators to be much more difficult than recruiting NT admins. Linux has really changed the field, both by reducing the cost of the server software, and by creating a much wider pool of potential Unix administrators. Microsoft had better hope that they can hang onto the desktop for a while longer, because it looks like the server playfield is tilting heavily against them.

  • by MarkX ( 716 )

    Actually a very careful reading would lead to the conclusion that ~50% of Compaq customers have used or are using Linux. It doesn't say that 50% of shipments are running Linux.

    Compaq service director Pathy Pathmanaban confirmed that 45 per cent of all customers had now either deployed Linux or used the operating system for a pilot project.

    All this really means is that a lot of people have tried Linux, which we already know. It really doesn't say much about what percentages they are shipping today. Also it sounds like they are talking about Australia, not the United States.

  • I am happy to hear Compaq getting press over Linux. I am looking forward to Compaq 3200 array controllers one day being supported in the kernel since they rule. I believe Compaq is one of the most innovative companies out there... they have invented many things like 'hot plug PCI' which I believe they added to the PCI 2.1 spec. Compaq is a good company and they make great servers.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday November 08, 1999 @06:23PM (#1551094)
    I worked at Compaq for the summer. I had the pleasure of meeting with some of the head guys in the Linux Division. There are some pretty sharp guys there, and they've been pushing really hard to get Compaq to support Linux.

    Even while I was working there I stripped Windows off the box I was working on and installed Linux to do all my work. I loaded VMWare every once in a while to work with Access, but other than that it was Linux. Even within Compaq they've been very supportive of Linux.

    I'm sure that they will begin to encourage the use of Linux now, and probably have a tech support setup. Sounds good to me!
  • I would agree that the timing is 'interesting'; but in terms of the ongoing DOJ case, it's largely irrelevant. The judge specifically pointed out in the findings of fact that servers are very different beasts; an OS that's great for a server isn't necessarily a good substitute for Windows, "since server operating systems lack the features -- and support for the breadth of applications -- that induce users to purchase Intel-compatible PC operating systems." [paragraph 19] Later in the ruling: "Although Linux has between ten and fifteen million users, the majority of them use the operating system to run servers, not PCs. Several ISVs have announced their development of (or plans to develop) Linux versions of their applications. To date, though, legions of ISVs have not followed the lead of these first movers. Similarly, consumers have by and large shown little inclination to abandon Windows, with its reliable developer support, in favor of an operating system whose future in the PC realm is unclear. By itself, Linux's open-source development model shows no signs of liberating that operating system from the cycle of consumer preferences and developer incentives that, when fueled by Windows' enormous reservoir of applications, prevents non-Microsoft operating systems from competing." [paragraph 50]

    You can certainly disagree with these statements; I do, at least partially. But for the purposes of this lawsuit, they're now facts, and the penalties imposed on Microsoft (if any) will be based on those facts.

  • Unix was written long before Digital
  • The article says 45% of *customers* have *tried* linux. It does *NOT* say 50% of Compaq servers are running linux. Beware lies, damned lies, but especially statistics. Somebody moderate down the comment to which this is a reply. It was perhaps written a little hastily.
  • My company has 10 Proliant 6500 servers. All of Compaq's hardware was suppoerted out of the box by RedHad 6 (Even the SmartDrive controller..)

    All in all, Compaq with Linux is a good choice if your management won't "buy" into VA or Penguin (Which are better choices, IMHO but doesn't have the brand name YET!)

    I havn't had to recompile our Kernel to support ANY of the hardware... but I will when we have a stable setup.

  • Most people should have better things to do at 11:30 EST at night than read Slashdot.

    Well, it specifically says that it isn't the big bosses that want it, it is the people below them.

    If the migrate the server, they might eventually migrate the PCs, which means a much bigger increase. Linux is slowly spreading through my campus, from the CS department to other labs now.

    Of course, my department won't switch because HYSYS is on the NT machines, and a near riot would ensue if they got rid of that.
  • You can certainly disagree with these statements; I do, at least partially. But for the purposes of this lawsuit, they're now facts, and the penalties imposed on Microsoft (if any) will be based on those facts.

    They may also provide the basis for a future appeal. The judge may have erred in trying to make a distinction between client and server pc's when the distinction is not all that clear. Linux computers are easily set up as either client desktops or servers and Microsoft is fast trying to proceed with a one size fits all OS that serves both the client desktop and server markets.

    Additionaly, the Judge severely diminishes the increasing trend to move popular consumer applications to the web, thereby increasing the need for server pc's. Even MS recognizes this growing trend and is re-thinking its licensing fee strategy to better fit the new(?) paradigm.

    As such, I think any news along these lines may wind up in the hands of appellate judges. I can almost hear the MS legal team saving Compaq's release now...that is, if they weren't privy to the release before hand ;)
  • You make an excellent point -- The old DEC user base is mostly likely already using Unix, and therefore going to be more comfortable with Linux.
    In addition, Compaq has always been a premium partner with SCO, and the SCO customer base is certainly looking at Linux

    However the vast majority of Compaq Proliants are probably in NT/NetWare shops which might be using Linux here and there but would be less likely to standardize on it.
  • I don't recall ever reading about Compaq investing equity in RHAT. However, Compaq does have an array of agreements, or "partnership"s with RHAT, running the gamut of jointly developing device drivers, certifying Compaq's hardware for RH Linux, and technical support.

  • I have to wonder how many total customers this represents? Could provide some nice verification for the "10-15 million" numbers. Sadly, the article doesn't seem to say.
  • Hi All!

    Uh, let's not get too excited by this. Compaq in Australia (as elsewhere in the Pacific Rim) is an amalgam of Compaq, Digital, and Tandem. Digital and Tandem might easily be a bigger portion of the customer base in a lot of parts of the area than Compaq has been. (Compaq Japan is firmly established--but Digital has been solid in Asia for a long time.)

    That 50% of Compaq customers have done pilots with Linux probably says more about those customers' perception of the future of Digital Unix than it does about NT.

  • by Amphigory ( 2375 ) on Monday November 08, 1999 @06:52PM (#1551108) Homepage
    And I'll say it again.
    Market share is irrelevant in anti-trust cases!
    What matters is if the company is able to exercise a strong influence on the market, and the what they do with that influence. So, Microsoft, while they are not the /only/ vendor of PC operatings systems, does exercies monopoly power due to the high price of entry into the market. That has been documented in nauseating (but wonderfully well written) detail by Judge Jackson. (I want his child, by the way).

    The point is that Microsoft /used/ their monopoly power in an area (operating systems) to prevent people from entering other markets. Specifically, web browsers.

    The only way in which market share is relevant is that you usually have to have a lot of it to have monopoly power. There have been successful cases with as little as 45%.

    Please guys: remember this, and repeat it. There is a lot of nonsense still going around that "MS ISn't a monopoly, look at linux!" They are a monopoly, notwithstanding that Linux is going to kick their little hButts, and at the bare minimum they deserve a massive (say $10billion) fine.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Try using a wrapper that sets a weird path (like PATH=~/.netscape_bin:$PATH), and put a fake uname script in ~/.netscape_bin. First have a script like #!/bin/sh \n echo "$@" >~/uname-args; exec /bin/uname "$@", then once you see what it wants, change it and have your script echo it.
  • by torpor ( 458 ) <ibisum&gmail,com> on Monday November 08, 1999 @06:53PM (#1551111) Homepage Journal
    One thing that is definitely not really made clear in this FoF/MS/Linux broo-haha is the fact that Linux is cutting into MS' *SERVER* market, not its desktop market.

    And this lawsuit is really about MS' desktop operating system - Windows 95/98.

    So on that basis, what Jackson has said is that Linux can't compete with Windows 95/98, and its true - right now, Linux is not a desktop operating system that Ma Apple Pie is gonna install.

    But on the backside of this, when you are comparing *SERVER* products, Linux is a match for NT, for sure...
  • Well if NT isn't used as a server, it's easier to use non-MS technologies on the client side as well. That doesn't mean they'll use linux on the desktop-that doesn't make any sense at this point. But it certainly leaves the door open to Corel, Lotus, Netscape, Sun, etc. But if NT is used as the server then it becomes more compelling to have an MS-only solution across the board.
  • a)As others have pointed out, this is just servers, which judge jackson considered irrelevant

    b) This probably includes their alpha platforms (and there's diddly for application support for any of alpha/NT, alpha/linux and alpha/tru64 compared to intel/win32), and

    c)It's irrelevant to the timeframe in which microsoft allegedly performed it's anticompetetive acts:

    The switch to Linux - revealed as arch-rival Microsoft prepares to launch Windows 2000 on February 17 -
    has emerged in the past six months. (emphasis added)
  • IANAL but from what what I understand it's just about impossible to appeal findings of fact. So far MS has not been found guilty of breaking any law. The judgement if it goes against MS can be appealed though.
  • Do I remember reading in the FoF that Compaq was singled out on more than one occasion for being highly "compliant" with M$'s desires? For some reason this partnership with Linux seems suspect considering that Microsoft is competing against Linux with NT4 and that win2K is supposed to be an industrial strength OS for both servers and clients.

    What will Compaq do when 2K comes out? Ship PCs with 2K and servers with both? Or ship both Linux and 2K with both servers and clients? Either way, you get a quite pissed off M$ and a Compaq that suddenly finds royalties rising. If Compaq figures that any added expense in the form of royalties can be more than offset by the rise in sales of servers by offering both 2K and Linux, this can suggest three things:

    1. Compaq figures that M$ will get their butt kicked by the DOJ and be forced to make public what they charge each computer maker for their product, therefore effectively insulating Compaq against possible royality increaces...

    2. Compaq has very high hopes for Linux, high enough to begin to break a close relationship with M$... or

    3. Compaq knows something about win2K that we do not know for certain (a verdtiable bugfest, swiss-cheese security, etc.)

    Either one of these three is quite interesting to contemplate. The Logic Police have spoken.


    I am a gangsta thug / Are you a homie G? / If you drink milk, / You can be like me.

  • I'm looking at both posts and 'uh oh here we go again.' People think that "their" OS can do everything. It's ridiculous to use linux as a mainframe OS but on the other hand, linux is light years ahead of solaris on pc's. Read my lips "L I G H T Y E A R S". So again, we have 2 operating systems that are great in what they do but absolutely suck in the other things.
  • I don't know about you, but I've got as many "servers" as desktops in my house.
  • I'm glad this came out after the M$ ruling. This gives Linux credibility in the business server environment, and it didn't give microsoft any battling fodder. Though, as much as I like Microsoft getting the smack laid down upon them, I would like a fair trial. I now feel kinda bad that M$ didn't get this to throw at the DOJ.

    You have just experienced the full spectrum of the /. post. Super prolinux/fuck M$ to we feel sorry for M$.

  • Actually I found it interesting the way the judge phrased the facts on web apps and appliance computers -- they may very well succeed, but there is no proof of that yet, and others have failed.

    - Michael T. Babcock <homepage []>
  • Well... I cant speak for compaq, even tho I work for them.. But here in the states we have quite a few people on our LINUX team for tech-support, at the CSC I work at, we have 20 members alone.. (CSC = Customer Service Center) And we have a few CSC's in North America.. I know that inside my CSC linux is strong, as well as Tru64.. So, Linux is getting there.. Plus Compaq was a BIG sponser this year at ALS..
  • You should like this news then... there's a RAID array controller driver for pretty much ALL of the SMART-2 series of controllers. This includes the SMART 3200 (we have one in the Compaq ProLiant 3000 system I'm running at work). The drivers are in the official stable kernel as of 2.2.12, but I'd recommend 2.2.13 or one of the AC patches - it's been rock solid since I brought it up. (Admittedly just over a week ago now, but I haven't had to reboot it yet, and I don't think I'll need to.)
  • I wish that corporate statements of support translated into reality a little more quickly. When I look at (Compaq|HP|IBM)'s web pages for servers, I can rarely tell what degree of linux support they have on a particular product. I'd like to see a table listing each hardware feature and explaining how, and how well it is supported. The best example is RAID arrays. If the vendor claims that the RAID is linux-compatible, does this mean:
    1. They provide a binary, closed-source kernel module?
    2. They provide a kernel patch?
    3. Someone else has written a kernel patch?
    4. I can write a script which takes some action when a drive dies?
    5. I can take drives offline/online with a command-line utility (for hot swap)?
      1. The number one thing Compaq could do to show that they're serious about linux on servers is eliminate keyboard, video and mouse. These are relics of the "PC wannabe server" days. Sun's Netra realizes this. I want the BIOS fully accessible through the serial port. And if the machine locks up hard, I want to reboot it through the serial port (with adequate authentication.) And obviously, the RAID must be fully configurable/controllable through the serial port. Although I'm not sure what would be the best way to install Linux on a headless box.

        In reality, it's easier and cheaper to build from scratch than to get satisfaction from these corporate giants. They talk the Linux talk, but they walk the Microsoft walk.

  • It really makes even less sense to put Sun on the desktop than Linux. Unless you are an engineer.'
  • Compaq service director Pathy Pathmanaban confirmed that 45 per cent of all customers had now either deployed Linux or used the operating system for a pilot project.

  • "Unix was written long before Digital" ... maybe on your planet, but not on planet Earth. Unix was developed on Digital PDP-series mini-computers (started on a PDP-7, continued on a PDP-11/20). You can still buy them. Do a little research [] next time.

  • Dilbert stereotypes aside, the management in most organizations recognizes that they're paying IT salaries for a reason, and usually defer to the technical people (or the manager of the technical department) to make the technical decisions, within certain (usually financial) parameters. In my experience, stories of management not listening are usually about an individual not being heard (or feeling that they weren't), not necessarily the technical staff as a whole. Convincing management to head in a certain technical direction is usually not too difficult if their needs (e.g., costs, people resources needed to implement, etc) are addressed during the pitch. Non technical people don't get the same thrill from technology as /.'ers might, so you may need to sell ideas using a different approach. You're right about Compaq selling to the suits - they've already figured out how to tailor their sales pitch to their audience. Technical people having difficulty in getting new ideas across could stand to learn from them.
  • I want to get this clear in my head: can even a federal court ruling be appealed in the supream court? How do the various court levels in the US work? (I'm not fully up to scratch on the judicial system in any country, for that matter:).
  • This is actualy a large step for linux. whether or not it is 50% or 10%. This is a sign from Compaq that it has fait in linux. And since Compaq is a large, solid and respected company, Higher management is going to listen.

    This means that more companys are going for UNIX in general... And they need applications. Today many important buissness applications are missing for linux or are so incomplete that it is partialy useless. But software-companys are becoming scared not to join a "linux era".

    But with compaq on our side, Those applications are more likely to be developed for linux. Examples are: Java, C++, Hardwaresupport, IDE programming tools, multimedia-players(Some formats is not supported yet).

    But don't expect this to take three months. Make peace with your watch and think about one to three years...

    Shit Happens, Don't figth it: Fix it!

  • Yes.

    Federal circuit court decisions may be appealed and heard by, ultimately, the Supreme Court (there are various levels of indirection here, appellate courts and the like).

    The Supreme Court ultimately has the final say on a given matter.

    The Supreme Court isn't final because it's right; it is right because it's final.

  • > Either way, you get a quite pissed off M$ and a Compaq that suddenly finds royalties rising.


    It could be, though, that the genie is out of the bottle.

    Picture it now:

    PHB: Hey Tech-Head, what kind of servers do we need to continue our astounding growth?

    TH : Well, boss, Compaq has some pretty good hardware nowadays, not like before when even their RAM was proprietary.

    PHB: We're going to need 300 of them, but capital is at a premium. We can lease, but we need the expense on the book for a tax write-off. So, we've decided to buy. Do some research and tell me what you'd recommend.

    (a while later)

    TH : Well, boss, I've done a bit of research. We can get 300 Compaq Proliant servers for X million dollars. For an additional 300,000 dollars, we can get an NT license for them.

    PHB: What?! What are the alternatives?

    TH : Well, there's Linux. We can get it gratis with the servers, and it's fast and stable, and Compaq supports it.

    PHB: Will it do what we need it to do?

    TH : With a few adjustments to what we need, and what we expect, yes.

    PHB: Good. Linux it is. You get me more specific details, and we'll get together later and write up the P.O.

    (I work for a guy that does value the opinions of his tech staff to almost this degree... a rare breed, indeed)

  • I don't know about headless (i.e. no framebuffer, or serial-console) support, but I do know something of Digital's RAID array controllers.

    They are fucking nice.

    The ones I'm used to working with, the HSZ50s and HSZ80s (as well as those I've had a couple of brushes with, like the HSZ40, and one I've never seen running, like the HSZ70) all have their own console drivers.

    Hot-swap can be done in a Digital StorageWorks array completely invisible to the host OS. Proper sense data, etc., will allow the host OS to log and/or alert the administrator of a hardware problem, but the remedy can be affected with no downtime whatever.

    I can't speak for other vendors, but I'm sure they have analogous systems.

    --Corey, a Tru64 admin
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Windows does not rule the desktop, the user does.The CEO, who dictates and prescribes windows, to the exclusion of all else, will damage productivity in non cost of ownership ways. Talented *nix people may leave, or not even apply. The lesser educated admins, will demand more pay, with less productivity. The kicker is the CEO who says it is windows is great and it can do this that and the other thing. Perhaps the CEO has a 'full install on a upmarket box', where the mass of workers get a different image on less powerful boxes/ and or actually rely on a network - working.
  • From things the press has been saying, I think it's widely acknowledged that Compaq currently has much higher cost structures than Dell and its other competitors, and hence might well get killed if it tried to compete in the low-end PC market. If Compaq is therefore going to focus on the server market instead, then supporting Linux would be consistent with this strategy. After all, they'd want to sell servers that actually run a decent OS and get good performance, right?

    By the way, does anybody else get annoyed when sources like CNN/AP/Reuters talk about how Linux is a threat to MS in the server market, as if it's not a perfectly fine OS for desktop computers too?

  • And does that include people who converts the old Prolinea 486's into a mini web server?

    Nice thing about the Compaq/DEC desktops, they're slim enough to hide anywhere...

    Those proprietory drive mounting brackets are a pain though, had to put the hard drive in with blue tack.
  • It's an attempt to show that Linux has a broad base of interest. It's worthwhile to be able to say that more than just a small core of geeks are interested in Linux.
  • Remember SAP porting R/3 to Linux? /03/01/1115235.shtml []

    I think this figure (50%) is and will be affected in a positive way by this. R/3 installations built on 'commodity' Intel-based hardware have traditionally used NT as that's all that was available as a supported platform for R/3. Now Linux is here, that will change. If not just for the choice aspect. Compaq are also of course interested in this.


  • Compaq better hurry up or the world is going to pass them by.
  • As an aside - I am stuck using Netscape for mail at work, and it identifies itself as running on Linux whenever I send out a message. I have checked everything I could think of, but I have not found out how to change this to make it look like I am sending from an NT box.

    Fortunately, people who says "you can't use linux because I say so" usually aren't capable of viewing the message headers either.

    Now, if netscape use a uname call, consider changing your linux source so uname returns "NT" or whatever you want. Yucky, but if that's what you need...

    For web browsing, let the junkbuster proxy tell the servers what os/browser you are running. (configurable) That gets around client-type filtering.
  • It was originally done on PDP7s and quickly ported to 11s

    My first experience was V6 on an '11 and my first port was of V6 to the vax (no not a port you've ever heard of)

    68k (and 32k etc) ports came out when chips with MMUs or chips for which MMUs could be made became available (I probably did 15-20 68k ports plus a couple of others in the mid-80s). x86 based ports came later - for the 286 initially which was an abysmal Unix target - Intel learned a lot by the time they brought out the 386 and sadly around the same time Motorola floundered.

  • Given that the only way for customers to have an alternative to Windows was to create one themselves, this prove that they couldn't have one from another company than MS because of their monopoly power, so the very existence of Linux is a PROOF that MS is a monopoly.

  • 3. Compaq knows something about win2K that we do not know for certain (a verdtiable bugfest, swiss-cheese security, etc.)

    And maybe that is what they know about W2K that made them drop the team for Alpha port of NT.

  • Because this is the SERVER side and Judge Jackson said that it was unlikely that users would switch to a server operating system.

    If MS had a monopoly on the server side this would have been an ammunition, but here this would be appor try to do it.

    MS: "See, this is a proof that we are not a monopoly"

    DOJ: "We have to confess MS is right, this is a proof they are not a monopoly... on the server side, which we never claimed them to be"
  • linux is light years ahead of solaris on pc's

    Uhm, lightyears? It's nice to chat dogma's, but have you any reason to claim so?

    -- Abigail

  • If you haven't bothered to read the findings of fact, this might influence you. If you have read them, you'll know that the relevant market has been defined as "Desktop Personal Computers" i.e. servers have been excluded.
  • The max you can achieve with Intel right now is 8-way systems.

    Bollocks. Data General have been offering 64 CPU Intel based servers for some time now. See ion/html/av_25000_enterprise_server.html []. 128 CPU and higher versions are due to follow early next year.

    Sun HW offers 1000-way SMP capabale systems(in theory at least)

    Nope. The most Sun offer is 64-way with the E10000 StarFire. We have four of them here. nd/10000/spec.html []. Sure, you can go past 64 CPUs with clustering or server farms, etc., but not SMP.

    Linux is slowly getting there but it;'s not there "just yet" Let's be sensible....

    Agreed. I've even had Linux running on a Sun Ultra Enterprise server, but it certainly doesn't make as good use of it as Solaris does. It'll get there in time, but it's not there yet.

  • It doesn't sound fishy at all. That same findings of fact said that servers and PCs are seperate markets and that Linux isn't yet true competition on the desktop, in PCs, where MS really has their monopoly.
  • It isn't really all that surprising. Most companies with serious Server hardware would have at one point or another have installed a Linux system, even if just to see what the operating system was like. This is increasingly likely as the Linux distributions are so freely available, they are even sometimes distributed on CDs attached to magazines. Linux has received an enormous amount of attention in the "free" Press that tends to go round corporate IT areas. I seem to remember that there hasn't been an edition of Network News [] that hasn't had an article regarding Linux for months.

    This is a pure ballpark estimate, but I would say if you took all companies with Support and Network departments of more than 5 people, that 90% of those companies have at one point or another had a Linux box operating on their network.
  • hey perhaps you should resist the urge for caffeine after the seventh cup of coffee.

    My company runs NT, 95, 98, DG/UX, Solaris,
    Digital Unix and RedHat Linux.

    When I see innacuracies on Slashdot, or or whatever for that matter, I don't need to swear or post in all bold text. I think your comment about "anything but Linux is dead wrong" - it's sneaking in all over the place IME.

    Chris Morgan
  • Hack your /usr/src/linux/include/linux/uts.h file: It looks like this: #ifndef _LINUX_UTS_H #define _LINUX_UTS_H /* * Defines for what uname() should return */ #ifndef UTS_SYSNAME #define UTS_SYSNAME "Linux" #endif #ifndef UTS_MACHINE #define UTS_MACHINE "unknown" #endif #ifndef UTS_NODENAME #define UTS_NODENAME "(none)" /* set by sethostname() */ #endif #ifndef UTS_DOMAINNAME #define UTS_DOMAINNAME "(none)" /* set by setdomainname() */ #endif #endif Now just change the strings to appropriate values.
  • It's not that strange really as they already sell openvms, digital unix and windows on their servers
  • This is irrelevant. The MS antitrust case specifically refers to the intel-compatible desktop PC operating system market. Servers (and even more so non-x86 servers) aren't at issue.


  • by mattdm ( 1931 )
    I'm not so sure. I'm not a lawyer, but my understanding is that appeals focus on findings of law, and that's very difficult to appeal a finding of fact.


  • IAAL, but this is is not legal advice. etc.
    The market today has *nothing* to do with whether ms violated the law four years ago. zero. zilch. No matter how much ms's spin machine tries to suggest otherwise.

    Today's market *does* matter in determining what remedies to be applied. But the underlying case was about harm in 1996, which doesn't go away just because they can't do it any more.

    hawk, esq.
  • IIAL, and you're correct. It's not that findings of fact can't be appealed, but that the standard of review is so high--essentially that no reasonable person could have reached that concusion from the evidence offered.
  • Standard Oil was divided up by the Supreme Court. I don't know who participated in the AT&T split.
  • A quote from the article..
    "The CIOs are not concerned about it. But one level below them, it's a hot topic," he said."

    Gee, I guess they're just busy figuring out which color PCs to buy.
  • Interestingly, Bob Young of Redhat addressed this while speaking to NBR last night. He said that the judge differentiates but we don't.
  • There are lies damn lies and statistics, yes, 50% (probably 90%) of corporations have at least one LINUX server running somewhere, my comapny has three, BUT , by the same token they are also running 2,500 NT based servers scattered around the world, and 4 DEC PDP-11 s. which run an X25 mail switch (until next month -- as they are only Y1.9999 compliant). It would be interesting to know which is the oldest machine actually in production. When I was last there Rank/Xerox in London were running some very early DEC PDP boxes (circa 1974) as a mail switch I wonder if it still runs.
  • I would like to know what other computers companies are doing. I know IBM has support and is shipping redhat on Netfinity's and Dell has Linux approved workstations but what are the total sales/devices shipped. That would give a good idea as to the total requests for linux installed machines. Does VA or Penguin Computing provide this info anywhere?
  • Hate to be on the doom merchants side for once, but this survey doesn't really tell us much.

    If a company with 200+ servers has one crufty 486 running Linux as a "pilot project" to keep a university trainee busy during the holidays they'll qualify on the side of the angels.

    I want to see the survey that says 50% of all server sales are selecting Linux over NT [or any other OS]....and I hope the day comes soon!

  • and I'm an engineer. I use it because it works. I do logic design and our tools are on our Solaris boxes (the day we move to NT is the day I hand in my two weeks notice) and we use PC-XWare on Windows to connect. I hate PC-XWare on Windows because: 1) It doesn't always connect correctly and displays horribly (8-bit color to actually see borders; this make backgrounds blow). 2) Windows doesn't let me have too many apps open or it chokes. So basically that's the only app I have open most of the time (and Eudora, and I know that takes lots of resources also.) 3) There is a lag between what I'm doing with the mouse and what's displayed. On Linux, response time is magnitudes better. I use Linux and it works awesome!
  • Ok, here goes:

    1. The Smart Array driver is *not* a binary only driver

    2. Yes, there is a kernel patch. It's in 2.2.12 or 13, and 2.3.x. You can also get it from drivers/linux/ [].

    3. No. The driver was written at Compaq (by me). It is now maintained by another employee at Compaq.

    4. Since I don't normally work on storage products, I don't know the answer to this. Hopefully the answer will be yes in the near future.

    5. Yes. The Linux SCSI code has support for hot-swapping drives (if you're SCSI subsystem supports it, electrically). For example, if I plug a new drive into my Proliant 5500 in slot 1, I can bring the drive online with

    echo "scsi add-single-device 0 0 1 0" >/proc/scsi/scsi

    The order of those numbers parameters are host, channel, id, lun. Similarly, you can take a disk offline with "scsi remove-single-device params".

    As for the elimination of Keyboard, video and mouse and replacing them with serial port access to the BIOS, I suggest you check out a feature known as Integrated Remote Console (most Compaq servers have this feature). A serial port is "stolen" from the machine and is used to remote video and keyboard. See http:/ / ides/281862-002.html [] for more information.

    I hope this helps,
  • Actually, Compaq, along with several other big players, DOES have a minor equity investment []in RH.
  • To be a little bit more specific about that: Basically, if a court decision goes against you in the US, you have a right to appeal, and the courts are required to hear your appeal. If the court hears your appeal and decides that it was a frivolous one, they can fine you for making it; but they have to hear it first. Only in extremely rare cases--someone filing a long series of utterly frivolous lawsuits and appeals--can someone be denied the right to do this.

    This continues up to the level of the federal circuit courts of appeals, the second-highest level of courts in the US. The highest level is the Supreme Court, and it works quite differently. With very rare exceptions, the Supreme Court is not required to hear any case. If a decision goes against you in the federal circuit courts, and you want to appeal that decision to the Supreme Court, you must file a "petition for writ of certiorari"--a formal request to hear the case, and a description of exactly what issues you feel the Court needs to decide on, and your legal arguments supporting your opinions on those issues. The other side can then file a "brief in opposition", a factual and legal description of why the Court should find the other way on the issues, or refuse to hear the case altogether. You can then file a "reply brief" rebutting the other side's arguments. In addition, any other party that might be interested in the outcome of the case can ask the Court's permission to file an amicus curiae ("friend of the court") brief, describing their own views. (For example, if a drug case that started out in state court gets appealed to the Supreme Court, the federal government isn't a party to the case; but if the Justice Department feels strongly that the case should be ruled in the state's favor, it may file an amicus curiae brief supporting the state's views.)

    Once all of this filing and counterfiling has been done, the Court can then do one of several things.

    • It can agree to hear the case. In this case, the parties have a chance to argue their views orally before the Court, and the Court then makes its decision (though that decision may not come for months after the oral argument). The court's decision, whatever it is, becomes precedent that all courts in the US must follow for cases with the same set of facts.
    • It can refuse to hear the case. (This is by far the most common result.) In this case, the decision of the circuit appeals court stands. This does not create a national precedent, though the circuit appeals court's decision still sets precedent within that circuit only. (When you hear a news report say that the Supreme Court "refused to consider" or "sidestepped" some case, this is what happened.)
    • It can immediately make a ruling. For example, if the Court makes a ruling on a particular case after hearing the arguments, and several other cases with the same set of facts have recently been presented to the Court, the Court may immediately make the same ruling on all those other cases.
  • Ooops. was thinking DEC PDP, but didnt associate it with Digital :)
  • The nature of quite a few of these posts suggests that they think 50% of servers shipped by compaq have been, or will be, loaded with Linux. Which is not the case. All this says is that 50% of those who return surveys to compaq are using Linux somewhere.
  • in fact ONLY federal cases may be appealed to the supreme court.
    I don't believe this is correct. issues not resolved at the highest level of state courts can go to the supreme court.
  • Good now maybe i will get more business working on compaq servers running linux. Does anybody know if compaq are going to have any certs for linux on their servers?
  • You shouldn't need to take a drive off-line for a hot-swap if a RAID array's been designed properly.

    As for configuring the BIOS, why use the serial port? You have the /dev/nvram device if you compile your kernel properly. Use that.

    Then what the hardware vendors need to do is tell you how to fiddle with /dev/nvram to properly modify your BIOS settings.

If you suspect a man, don't employ him.