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> My Experiences Trying To Leverage The Power Of Lin
post Jun 22 2003, 05:18 PM
Post #1

Whats this Lie-nix Thing?

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I used to work as a consultant for a Fortune 500 company (more than 10,000 employees). As an expert in the field of IT consulting, I think I can shed a little light on the current climate of the open source community, and Linux in particular. The main reason that open source software, and Linux in particular, is failing is due to the underlying immaturity of the technology and the perception of the viral GNU license.

I know that the above statements are strong, but I have hard facts to back it up with. At the Fortune 500 company that I worked for, we wanted to leverage the power of Linux and associated open source technologies to benefit our server pool. The perception that Linux is “free” was too much to ignore. I recommended to the company that we use the newest version of Linux, version 9.0. My expectations were high that it would outperform our current solution at the time, Windows2000, which was doing an absolutely superb job (and still is!) serving as web, DNS, and FTP servers.

I felt that I was up to the job to convert the entire server pool to the Linux technology. I had several years experience programming VB, C#, ASP, and .NET Framework at the kernel level. I didn’t use C, because contrary to popular belief, ASP and VB can go just as low level as C can, and the latest .NET VB compiler produces code that is more portable and faster than C. I took it upon myself to configure and compile all of the necessary shareware versions of software that we needed, including sendmail, apache, and BIND. I even used the latest version of gcc (3.1) to increase the execution time of the binaries. After a long chain of events, the results of the system were less than impressive..

The first bombshell to hit my project was that my client found out from another consultant that the GNU community has close ties to former communist leaders. Furthermore, he found out that the ‘x’ in Linux was a tribute to the former Communist philosopher, Karl Marx, whose name also ends in ‘x’. The next bombshell to hit my project was the absolutely horrible performance. I knew from the beginning that Linux wasn’t ready for the desktop, but I had always been told by my colleagues that it was better suited for a “server”. As soon as I replaced all of the Windows2000 servers with Linux servers, the Linux servers immediately went into swap. Furthermore, almost all of the machines were quad-processor x86 servers. We had no idea that Linux had such awful SMP support. After less than 1 day in service, I was constantly having to restart servers, because for some reason, many of the servers were experiencing kernel panics caused by mod_perl crashing apache! The hardship did not end there! Apparently, the version of BIND installed on the server pool was remotely exploitable. Soon after we found that out, a new worm was remotely infecting all of our servers! We were not expecting this, because our IIS servers running on Windows2000 had never experienced a worm attack. Microsoft has always provided us with patches in the unlikely event that an exploit was found. It took us hundreds of man-hours just to disinfect our Linux servers! After just 48 hours of operating Linux servers in our server pool, we had exhausted our budget for the entire year! It was costing us approximately 75% more to run Linux than Windows2000.

Needless to say, I will not be recommending Linux to any of my Fortune 500 clients. In the beginning, we thought that since Linux was such “old” technology, it would be more mature than anything on the market. We also found out the hard way that rag-tag volunteer efforts responsible for Apache and BIND simply are not able to compete with the professional operations of Microsoft. I guess the old saying is true; “You get what you pay for!” Needless to say, I will be using Microsoft’s “shared license” solution for my enterprise clients, rather than the communist GNU license.

As it stands now, I do believe Linux has some practical uses. I think it will be useful in a University setting for first year computer science students to compile their “Hello World!” programs on (provided that gcc won’t kernel panic the machine). Simply put, Linux just doesn’t handle the rigors of a real-world work environment.
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post Jun 22 2003, 05:42 PM
Post #2

I Eat C Code for Breakfast

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Thanks for your interesting post. (This is a help forum, which seems to be an odd place to post).

I think I 'understand' in the sence that the words make sence, but I lack the real understanding as you have far more experience than me.

However, the suggest that linux is formed from a communist movement. It shows that you are unwilling to move your opinions based on wrong stereotypes. A group of people will always have those that believe in and maybe do hideous things, but they can still function relatively normally and can become great in their era. Take for example Van Gough, he was insane (he cut of his own ear) but created some marvous paintings, you don't hear people knocking his work because of who he was. He will always be one of the greatest painters.

To that end, I don't see you going through Bill Gates live and saying Ohh, he did this heaven forbid I won't touch microsoft technology. If for example you found that microsoft sells arms to third world countries, would you really stop using them? I doubt it because your mindset is purely money driven and microsoft has worked out cheapest and easiest, but that's not your fault.

The idea of a "free" OS may indeed be implausable for large co-operation, however highlights your reliance on Microsoft technology,

"Windows2000 had never experienced a worm attack. Microsoft has always provided us with patches in the unlikely event that an exploit was found."

You may well feel that microsoft technology is superior, fine, that's your opinion. I for example hate the idea of spending $300 + for an OS that I have to call them up each time I do a re-install, and get hassle if I do this more than once a year! That in my opinion is obscene.

Furthermore, my experiences as a colledge student running 3 small comercial servers for local business can say that linux has alot to offer. I run WinNT server on them and have alot of downtime when installing new software and making changes to it, which costs money. I have seen, (nb that I can't, but others can) with my own eyes people making massive changes to a similar setting under linux with NO downtime and no need to reset.

As for my machine I get blue screened all the time and end up resetting alot, not to mention having to reformatt every 6-10 months on my windows machine.


I have a new toothbrush that had rubber prongs to massage my gums while I brush. How odd! (Query of life)
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post Jun 22 2003, 06:10 PM
Post #3


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To easily describe this post I'll sum it up.... opinionated Linux trolling. I just want to know out of all the sites why this one and why a help forum? Scratch that, how many forums are you trolling on? Gah, trolls everywhere someone get my a bludgeon'd weapon, QUICK!!
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post Jun 22 2003, 07:27 PM
Post #4

Its GNU/

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I would say approx 50% of all the webservers run apache on some form of Unix / linux computer. I have heard rumors that some of Microsofts servers run unix too. linux derives its beginnings from unix so if that the case then unix is also communist. linux was developed as a free version of unix.

I would also say you have been lucky that your webservers have never had a worm attack. Some of the worms in the past have cost corporations millions to fix.

I agree with you that linux on a large corporate level as you describe is not a wise decision. The corporate world functions around MS office, and outlook. The linux world tools are not that mature yet. It appears that poor planning on your part and the fact you under estimated the task at hand caused problems.

It is true that linux is immature in mainy aspects. Most developers work on it in there spare time.

But for small businesses that can not afford the ever increasing costs it is a reasonable alternative to MS.
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post Jun 23 2003, 10:24 AM
Post #5

Whats this Lie-nix Thing?

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I work for a company that has 3000 users accessing our intranet and databases which all run on Linux boxes. In 1 1/2 years we have not had a single down/bad time.

The company has actually bought the software as they wanted to give something back for the amount of money they have saved.

Ignore the first post. He obviously comiled all the source code wrong or something.


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