Date: Tue, 17 Feb 2004 22:29:18 -0800
From:"Linux-Pipeline-Newsletter" <linuxed@TECHWIRE.COM>
Subject: [LPN] Linux Pipeline Newsletter - 2.17.2004
February 17, 2004


1. Editor's Note: Linux's Biggest Problem? Not Microsoft, Nor SCO
2. Only the Best Linux and Open-Source News
3. How-To: Land a Linux Job
4. Trends: Linux Salaries on the Rise
5. Expert Views: Linux Is No Threat to the Economic Recovery
6. Review: SUSE 9.0: A Distro Worth Paying For
7. Voting Booth: Is Desktop Linux 5-10 Years Out?
8. How-To: What to Think About When Considering Deploying Linux In
Your Company
9. How-To: Figuring Out Where Linux Makes Sense In Your Organization
10. How-To: Comparing Strategies: Novell and Red Hat
11. Expert Views: Linux on the Desktop: "Better" Isn't Good Enough
12. Dig Into Open Commercial Linux Products In Product Finder
13. Check Out The Linux Pipeline Topic Categories
   - Core Linux
   - Applications
   - Enterprise Open Source
   - Business
14. Tell A Colleague About Linux Pipeline Newsletter
15. Have You Discovered The Other Pipelines?
16. Change Your Subscription Options

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1. EDITOR'S NOTE: Linux's Biggest Problem? Not Microsoft, Nor SCO

Microsoft isn't Linux's biggest problem, and neither is SCO. Linux's
biggest problem is the perception that the Linux community is a
bunch of dreamers. A whole package of other assumptions goes along
with that perception: that Linux is anti-business, that the Linux
community doesn't care about profit and private property and that
members of the community don't have what it takes to succeed in the
real world.

In fact, the reasons to use Linux and open source are practical. You
can start off by doing head-to-head comparisons of software quality.
Linux and open source software are just as good as proprietary
alternatives. Linux and other open source software are cheaper. Of
course, licensing costs are free, and total cost of ownership is
often less expensive than proprietary alternatives.

But the best reason to use Linux and open source is the availability
of support. This is also the most difficult thing to understand for
IT managers accustomed to using proprietary software.

The IT manager accustomed to using proprietary software looks at the
business model for open source, and he recoils in horror. "What the
heck is this? What company do I go to for support for this
monstrosity? What happens if I have a problem? I want a SINGLE
COMPANY responsible for maintaining this software!"

Those concerns are rational, and not to be belittled. (Another major
problem for the open source community: they often belittle people
who prefer proprietary platforms. Here's a note to any reader
thinking of sending me an e-mail: if your e-mail contains the word
"Windoze," or "luser," I don't want to see it.)

These concerns can be answered pretty quickly: you want one company
to be responsible for maintaining your software? You can have it!
Pick a company and hire them to do support.

The business model for supporting open source software is, in
broadest terms, exactly the same as the model for proprietary
software: you give a guy some money, and he maintains it for you.

However, Linux and open source give you more places to  go for
support than are available in the proprietary world. If you use
Microsoft Windows, you have to go to Microsoft for support, or to
someone that Microsoft has blessed. With open source, however,
anyone can grab a copy of the source code and support it. You can go
for support to any of a large number of companies, ranging in size
and respectability from IBM to A Couple Of Hungry Kids Straight Out
Of College, Inc. You can hire an open source expert on your own
staff, or a team of experts. And for many questions, you can simply
post to a newsgroup or mailing list and get your answer from an open
source advocate, absolutely free.

Our friend the proprietary software user is still not satisfied, is
he? He wants to know: "But who OWNS the software? I want a SINGLE
POINT OF SUPPORT! I want ONE THROAT TO CHOKE!" He's concerned that
if there isn't one company owning the software, then nobody owns it,
and nobody takes responsibility, and eventually the software might
get orphaned.

This supposed safety for proprietary software is simply an illusion.
As a technology journalist, one story I've written about a million
times is this one: Merely Big Software Company is being purchased by
Even Bigger Software Company. Even Bigger Software Company makes
software that competes with Merely Big's products, and Even Bigger
Software is PLEASED to announce that Merely Big users will have the
OPPORTUNITY to MIGRATE to Even Bigger's products. Even Bigger's
executives will be in touch any day now to let Merely Big's users
know exactly how much they're going to be forced to pay for this
privilege, and when.

I love those stories, because I can always get plenty of good quotes
from angry and frustrated users who are, in the words  of Marshall,
the stammering nerd from TV's "Alias," "fuh-fuh-fuh, um, screwed."

Compare that to the world of open source. An open source project
might get orphaned -- but if it does, you have access to the source
code, the right to modify it, and you can hire people to keep it
running and update it.

So don't let me hear anything else about open source and Linux being

What's more practical than finding a job? Today on Linux Pipeline,
we offer some tips for job-seekers on how they can go from resume to
interview to employment. In upcoming days and weeks, we'll be
bringing you practical tips on how the open source development
process is different from proprietary projects, and installing and
configuring Samba and Jabber.

We also have an editorial by Network Computing editor-in-chief
Robert Preston, debunking SCO's claims that open source "hurts the
U.S. economy, makes it difficult for U.S. software makers to compete
abroad, discourages technological innovation and threatens national

Robert A. Heinlein wrote about this back in 1939 in his very first
published story, "Life-Line." The gimmick: a mad scientists has
invented a machine that will foretell the precise date and time of a
subject's death. Life insurance companies are being put out of
business, and they go to court to seek relief. The judge finds:

     There has grown up in the minds of certain groups in this country
     the notion that because a man or a corporation has made a profit 
     of the public for a number of years, the government and the courts
     are charged with the duty of guaranteeing such profit in the 
     even in the face of changing circumstances and contrary public
     interest. This strange doctrine is not supported by statute nor
     common law. Neither individuals nor corporations have any right to
     come into court and ask that the clock of history be stopped ,or
     turned back, for their private benefit.

Rob bolsters his arguments with mentions of jumping the shark and
Ted McGinley. Go Google those terms if they don't mean anything to
you; I'm not giving away the punch line.

--Mitch Wagner, Co-Editor, Linux Pipeline


Intel Announces 64-bit x86 Chips, Repositions Itanium
The company plans 64-bit x86 server and workstation processor,
providing a power boost for the favorite Linux platform.

Novell Challenges SCO Claims On Unix Code

Evermore Software Challenges Microsoft Office In China

Expert Claims SCO-Novell Copyright Dispute Will Halt Linux Customer

3. HOW-TO: Land a Linux Job
Tips from recruiters and hiring managers to help you go from resume
to job.

4. TRENDS: Linux Salaries on the Rise
Salaries for Linux and open source positions are becoming
competitive with other platforms, but they won't rise higher until
Linux and open source are taken more seriously.

5. EXPERT VIEWS: Linux Is No Threat to the Economic Recovery
With its Linux lawsuit foundering, SCO is trying to convince
lawmakers that open source software hurts the U.S. economy and
threatens national security. Opinion, by Network Computing editor in
chief Rob Preston.

6. REVIEW: SUSE 9.0: A Distro Worth Paying For
SUSE 9 offers a superb printed manual, a great installation
interface, a modern KDE system in addition to the more standard,
older GNOME interface, and a new kernel build. It's easy to see why
Novell thought enough of the software to buy the company.

7. VOTING BOOTH: Is Desktop Linux 5-10 Years Out?
Is Linus Torvalds right that "it's going to take literally five
to 10 years before 'normal users' start seeing" Linux emerge as a
serious contender on the desktop?

8. HOW-TO: What to Think About When Considering Deploying Linux In
Your Company
Everything you need to know to deploy Linux in your company,
including what to look for in IT staff, in management tools,
technical support (and where to get it), application support,
security, who's already doing it and why, and desktop Linux issues.

9. HOW-TO: Figuring Out Where Linux Makes Sense In Your Organization
We sort through the areas where the OS excels and where you should
exercise caution in web services, instant messaging, application
servers, directory services, e-mail and databases.

10. HOW-TO: Comparing Strategies: Novell and Red Hat
Pioneer Red Hat and savvy investor Novell have different approaches,
but together they're leading the charge to bring Linux to the
enterprise--from the data center to the desktop.

11. EXPERT VIEWS: Linux on the Desktop: "Better" Isn't Good Enough
Advocates of Linux on the desktop talk about Linux replacing
Microsoft Windows, but of course, that's not the way the computer
industry works. Users don't replace what they already have. PCs,
minicomputers and Unix servers didn't replace mainframes, even
though the vendors of those systems kept insisting that was going to
happen any day now. -- Mitch Wagner

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commitment to Linux innovations, visit


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