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Want to "Go" to Novell's Brainshare and See Linus? -- And a Word on Ms. DiDio's "Independent" Survey
Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 07:59 AM EST

I have just discovered that parts of Novell's Brainshare conference are available as video. There were 6,000 attendees at Brainshare's opening session. That's a lot of people. I discovered the video by visiting Nat Friedman's blog, and he has a link to the video of the opening session and his Ximian presentation. His part is about an hour and a half in and Real Media Player only.

After I watched that video, I hopped over to Novell's site to hunt for more, and they have a lot more videos from the conference, so help yourself.

I got a real feel for what Novell is doing with SuSE Linux from this conference. They are making Linux easy enough for your mom. That includes the enterprise solutions. Wait until you see their patch demo. So much for retraining costs if you want to switch to GNU/Linux. You don't need retraining to know how to click on an icon. This is the end of Microsoft's FUD about TCO being higher if you switch to Linux, methinks, the lovely and tireless Ms. DiDio notwithstanding. Well, the end of anybody taking it seriously. She'll probably continue her quest, despite the tipping point already being reached. They are also designing SuSE Linux's desktop so that it can interoperate with Windows users easily.

Brainshare is still going on, by the way, through the 26th. A live webcast of Friday's general session will be available via Flash and Real Media Player beginning at 8:45 a.m. Mountain Time on Friday. You can register on this page. I don't know what it costs.

If you don't like Flash or Real Media Player, Messman's and Stone's speeches are available (or will be) as PDFs from links on this page, the same page where you'll find links to the videos, including speeches by Jim Stallings of IBM and Martin Fink of HP. HP and Novell are now partnering to offer SuSE Linux on HP Compaqs on desktops and notebooks, or as the press release puts it, from desktop to data center. To see these presentations, scroll down to March 24, just above the second Chris Stone photo, and click on the "video with audio" link.

Linus is interviewed on Nat's video, throws some Tshirts to the audience and says that there is no UNIX in Linux. I enjoyed watching that part, partly because it's Linus and he's just pleasant, and partly because it was amusing watching him not let himself be forced to say things he didn't intend to say. I am in learning mode. (Bob Mims has an interview today with Linus too, page one of the Salt Lake Tribune.) CEO Jack Messman gives a welcoming speech ("Novell is back") and Chris Stone speaks after that, or more accurately becomes the master of ceremonies, and he interviews Linus and helps throw Tshirts.

But the most interesting part, to me, on that video was the demo that Friedman gives of their Ximian desktop. If you are wondering if it's for you, you might like to take a look. He quickly shows how to do email with Evolution, which I use every day on Mandrake and can personally recommend, doing IM with GAIM (interoperating with MSN Messenger on a Windows box, via each using GroupWise, which is being made available as beta), and also how to share documents with the new P2P version of IFolder, which Novell has open sourced. HP's Martin Fink tells how he forgot to bring one slide with him and was able to get it in time, ten minutes before his presentation, using IFolder. Friedman says the idea is to be able to interoperate with others, including those on Windows boxes.

There's a demo of YaST setting up a DNS server, AutoYaST for sysadmins, and the YaST Online Update (on the Friedman first-day video). They also show Red Carpet installing new software lickety-split. Novell provided laptops so attendees could try out GNU/Linux while they were there, and set up wireless hotspots, so everyone could keep up with their email. It looked like a fun conference. There's a short cartoony Lord of the Rings takeoff, "Lord of the Net", about Linux. I must be the only human left who hasn't seen that movie, so I didn't know what was what, but everyone there seemed to enjoy it. There are some funny anti-butterfly spots too. I liked the one called Worm.

Bottom line to me was this: It was all GUI'd to the max and so easy my mom could do it. In fact, I may just get SuSE desktop for her as a gift. She has quit using her computer because she can't stand all the problems she has trying to get XP to do what she wants and because of virus, worm, and other security worries, which make her too nervous to be able to enjoy using the computer. She told me she realizes she doesn't know what she is doing, so she figures the only way not to end up a zombie is not to use her computer at all. She doesn't want to become part of the problem, so she's using her typewriter again. Sigh.

The Brainshare video on business solutions was intriguing. Notebooks with SuSE Linux installed are on the way from HP, according to HP's Fink. For that matter, they will have one SuSE Linux platform from laptop to data center, which is the part he says he likes. He seems more corporate than open source, but that's what this part was about, so it fit in. Fink talks up their indemnity program, and he claims HP and Novell worked out the details together. I will never endorse any indemnification that requires the customer to ask permission to modify, however. They don't seem to have noticed that they gave a demo on how easy it is to patch every day, but if you are under the indemnification program, would you have to ask permission every day first, I wondered, or is it automatic if you use their tool and only their tool? Fink also twice suggests that nobody go to LinuxWorld next year and that everyone just go to Brainshare instead. That sounded a bit strange.

IBM's Stallings' presentation was, to me, the best of breed in the business class at Brainshare. Stone says Stallings was a Marine, and he has that efficient, can-do aura. He says that SuSE Linux and Ximian now run across all IBM platforms, as does Level 3+ certification. IBM is preloading Linux on servers, as you can read on TechWeb:

Previously, both Red Hat's and SuSE's arrangements with IBM meant that, while customers could custom order Linux with new servers, the operating- system software was actually shipped separately by the Linux distributors for customers to install themselves.
Here's one Groklaw reader's take:
Note that. Previously, when you bought a "Linux server" from IBM, IBM didn't ship you the linux CDROMs. That enabled IBM to avoid many of the (imagined?) legal risks as a "distributor" of Linux.

Now IBM themselves are installing and sending you a copy of Linux. If Linux were infringing on anyone's copyrights, what IBM is doing would increase their liability.

Does IBM look scared? Not from this angle.

What I got from Stallings' presentation was the incredible growth of GNU/Linux worldwide. IBM is not only offering GNU/Linux solutions, it is offering training and help for businesses wishing to migrate to Linux or become certified to 3+. Of course, that is their business. Linux, he says, is the fastest growing operating system in the world today, and the fastest growing OS in the history of charting OSs. Last year, the desktop grew 44%, which means tens of millions of desktops. It isn't just desktops, he says, but it's everything moving at some rate to Linux. Their blades, for example, are now 70% Linux. So they have Linux Competency centers (you can test things out before installing, check for security, whatever you wish to try before rollout), and 600 Linux coders in IBM's Linux Technology Center writing Linux code, and he says 80% of what they write ends up being accepted into the kernel. The train has left the station, and SCO isn't on it. This could have been SCO, had they not turned traitor.

In harmony with all this upbeat news, Red Hat is picking up customers like mad. Robert McMillan has the figures, up 43%:

The company gained 4,000 new customers and sold 87,000 subscriptions for its Red Hat's Enterprise Linux software during the quarter, Red Hat said. Of that, 61,000 subscriptions were sold into the enterprise IT market and 26,000 were sold in to high-performance computing and Web hosting space, Red Hat said.

International sales for the Raleigh, North Carolina, company grew by 107 percent, and amounted to 32 percent of Red Hat's income, said company chief executive officer Matthew Szulik, in a telephone news conference. "International has been an area of investment throughout the fiscal year," he said.

This harmonizes with the IDC figures which Stallings quotes, one of which being that GNU/Linux will outstrip Windows in the server space by 2006. Stallings says that there are a couple of reasons businesses are switching, especially small and medium businesses. First, it's to escape the license chokehold, being dependent on just one vendor. And second, it's total cost of ownership.

The "Independent" TCO Survey

Despite the lovely and tireless Laura DiDio's yoga-like contortions to try to make it seem like it's more expensive to switch to Linux than to upgrade Windows (maybe if you look at a one-month time frame, the month you switch and retrain -- but what about longterm?), Stallings says that businesses now are factoring into their TCO analysis the security snafus they struggle with in Microsoft products, and the expense, and they are sick of it. DiDio's charts don't include such info, of course, so they are now on Microsoft Watch, where they belong. More of Microsoft's "independent" analyses. And her survey doesn't factor in Novell's new SuSE Linux offerings, which really wipe away the retraining issues, if the videos I saw match the reality, and there's no reason to assume they don't.

By the way, one of the guys on Yahoo! Finance's message board, nobbutl, posted that the lovely and tireless Ms. DiDio did her "independent" survey with Sunbelt Software. And who are these dispassionate scientists working with Ms. DiDio and Yankee Group on their quest for TCO truth?:

Located in Tampa Bay, Florida, Sunbelt Software is the first and one of the largest providers of "best-of-breed" Windows NT, 2000/2003 utilities, supplying the tools necessary to support a Windows NT/2000 infrastructure. Working in partnership with innovative software developers, Sunbelt Software produces leading edge utilities and provides mainframe quality technical support. Sunbelt Software Inc. is a member of the 2001 Inc. 500 list of America's fastest growing companies. . . .

Sunbelt is a Microsoft Gold Certified Partner interested in what Windows network administrators need to solve their NT/2000 problems. We are constantly surveying NT/2000 administrators to determine which utilities are most in demand, and we then release best-of-breed solutions, leveraging the Internet as our primary marketing medium. Our client list contains over 90% of the Fortune 1000.

No axe to grind there, huh? Mary Jo Foley might wish to rewrite her headline. If you are interested, here are the actual survey questions. It seems it was all done online, not by phone calls, and only announced to W2Knews readers. Here's how W2Knews describes itself:

Sunbelt W2Knews is the World's first and largest e-zine designed for NT/2000 System Admins and Power Users that need to keep these platforms up & running. Every week we get you pragmatic, from-the-trenches news regarding NT/2000 and 3-rd party System Management Tools. W2Knews will help you to better understand NT/2000 and pass your Certification Exams. You will get breaking news like new tools, service packs, hot sites, or warnings about killer viruses via W2KNews Flashes. Sunbelt Software is THE NT/2000 e-business system tools site.
See any preselection in this process? How scientific is this survey?

Microsoft needs to get better at its FUD. This was too easy. What they are good at is killing competition, and a Samba guy says the EU decision leaves MS with a strong anti-open source hand it can play. Linus in his interview says the biggest threat to Linux is patents.


Want to "Go" to Novell's Brainshare and See Linus? -- And a Word on Ms. DiDio's "Independent" Survey | 296 comments | Create New Account
Comments belong to whoever posts them. Please notify us of inappropriate comments.
Typos, Glitches, Mistakes Here Please
Authored by: PJ on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:06 AM EST
Please record all my mistakes for posterity here, so I can find them
quickly. Thank you.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Woohoo, Novell settles on KDE desktop
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:20 AM EST

"Ein leitender Suse-Manager zeigte sich mit der
Entscheidung zufrieden und betonte, dass Qt die besser
definierten Schnittstellen und eine erheblich größere
Gemeinde von Entwicklern hinter sich habe. Die
Entscheidung für KDE sei so gesehen die logische

Which translates as

"A leading Suse-manager was happy with the decision and
said that Qt had a better defined API and a significant
larger developer community behind it. The logical result
is then to got for KDE."

(German is such an unefficient langauge, you always need
twice as much space for it)

[ Reply to This | # ]

WantWhen will Didio finally lose credibility?
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:29 AM EST
In the last few weeks, I've heard DiDio quoted in an NPR story about the state
of the industry and quoted in an AP story about the adoptiong of 'web

Neither of these stories were related to SCO. What bothers me is that DiDio
seems to be a respected expert by at least some people in the media.

This can't go on forever - at what point is her credibility going to be shot and
her career at The Yankee Group (who are they, anyway?) going to be over?

She can't go on spouting this SCO FUD forever and still be taken seriously by
the mainstream media, can she?

[ Reply to This | # ]

What a rollercoaster ride that is!
Authored by: cybervegan on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:30 AM EST
Novell have just reclaimed a huge chunk of lost confidence, from me.

Note sure what that "Don't go to LinuxWorld, go to BrainShare" bit is
about though (maybe you just had to be there to get it).

Looks like Novell's in full fighting form!

I'm now in two minds as to whether or not to stick with Mandrake or get Novell
SuSe instead. I can't support both, but I *do* want to register my vote!


Stand and fight we do consider
Reminded of an inner pact between us
That's seen as we go
And ride there
In motion
To fields in debts of honor

[ Reply to This | # ]

An Linux v/s Microsoft Comparison I Would like to see...
Authored by: penfold on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:32 AM EST
I wish a Hardware Vendor, Microsoft shop and Linux Shop could get together and
do one of these analysis. If a hardware vendor donated like hardware to each
shop and let them install, configure, tune, etc each operating system and then
give them to the hardware vendor to run tests (and maybe even let thrid parties
run their tests) then release those results.

And one of the things that would be required would be to document everything
done to the system so the hardware vendor could duplicate either configuration.
That way, everyone could see an honest analysis of Windows v/s Linux and how
difficult it is to get them to that point.

Blood from a turnip? That's easy! Try getting SCOX to produce evidence!

[ Reply to This | # ]

Novell Sunday NY Times Ads
Authored by: kberrien on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:39 AM EST
In case people missed it, I did (a co-worker brought me in a copy).

Novell took out 2 full page NY Times Ads on Sunday (big bucks) 22nd.

First ad has a topless man (presumably he's naked) sitting behind a desk, and
the title reads, "Megahertz: How you'll feel without a Linux strategy from

2nd add is a conferenceroom scene seen through a sledged hammered hole in a
wall, businessman holds a sledgehammer. Title is "Random Access: Freedom
to choose SUSE Linux or any other software you damn well please."

This and all the other indications, it would appear Novell is going full bore!
Take this into account, and the fact that SCO/MS FUD isn't working - Red Hat
sales far beyond predictions. Positive surveys.

SCO FUD isn't working in the industry, the market, or with sysadmins and CFO's.

[ Reply to This | # ]

More on Sunbelt Software
Authored by: Glamdrlng on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:04 AM EST
Not only is Sunbelt Software likely to be biased on any Windows vs. Linux
survey, they also have a reputation for spamming their newsletter and
discrediting other IT-oriented sites who publish unsavory reviews or polls about
their products. See href= and for mroe info.

[ Reply to This | # ]

IBM and HP - who's next, Dell?
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:13 AM EST
There's a very good reason for HP and IBM latching onto Linux. Given the low, low hardware margins on computers nowadays, they don't have to squeeze a royalty out for Microsoft. It's more profit in their pocket, and less in Microsoft's. And they say there is no justice in this world?

I have always believed, and I support Melanie Holland on this one issue: Microsoft's long-term stock prospect looks negative.

[ Reply to This | # ]

MS and royalties for APIs under the EU settlement
Authored by: Dominic Jackson on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:21 AM EST
Regarding Jeremy Allison's comments in The Register about Microsoft's patents, I would say the key phrase from the EU's Decision is this: " the extent that any of this interface information might be protected by intellectual property in the European Economic Area, Microsoft would be entitled to reasonable remuneration..." (italics mine) The article is unspecific on the type of "intellectual property" M$ could claim over the interfaces, but since Allison expressly mentions copyrights, I assume they mean patents. This is supported by the rest of the article.

And so we come back to the key phrase in the European Economic Area - the patents that are cited later in the article would not be valid in the EU as software patents are not permitted here. (Despite the best efforts of M$ and friends to change this). My non-expert reading is that a European organisation could pay the "publisher" fees to get the documents from M$, but would be free to turn them over to open source coders. In Europe those self-same coders could then write GPL implementations of the specification without worrying about patents. Yet (see the FFII site).

Can anyone see any holes in my logic here?

[ Reply to This | # ]

I nominate Linus as Time's Man of the Year
Authored by: edumarest on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:38 AM EST
Thank you, PJ, for all the information that you and your brigade of Minutemen
(and -women) amass and publish every day.

Even though I just use Linux from a GUI (KDE by choice on SuSE 9.0) I agree that
2006 will be a big year for Linux. Linus' focus on the desktop is the biggest
blow to Micro$oft that I have seen yet. It is far better than the DOJ and EU
issues. It will curtail m$'s dominance better than any lawsuit or illegal
activity that m$ could ever dream up.

Can you imagine if Linus makes Time Magazine's 'Man of the Year?' If I had the
opportunity I would fake such an issue and then give it to Bill Gates, et al.,
during some public presentation.

I would settle for Tux as Man of the Year.

...if you cannot measure it then you cannot troubleshoot it, you can only
SuSE 9.0 on hp pavilion ze 4560us

[ Reply to This | # ]

Want to "Go" to Novell's Brainshare and See Linus? -- And a Word on Ms. DiDio's "Independent" Survey
Authored by: blacklight on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:39 AM EST
"If you are interested, here are the actual survey questions. It seems it
was all done online, not by phone calls, and only announced to W2Knews

The survey questions seem to be fair and objective. However, the online survey
does not appear to require any respondent self-identification or authentication,
leaving the door open for someone to participate in that survey multiple times.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Want to "Go" to Novell's Brainshare and See Linus? -- And a Word on Ms. DiDio's "Independent" Su
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:51 AM EST
I work in market research, and this so called independent survey has more than a
few flaws, Sampling aside, to put your If statements in the text of your
questions and allow your respondents to decide weather or not to answer your
questions is not just questionable, it's ludicrous. By the way did I mention I
do marketing research programming! Most notable is the inability to answer
other to many of the questions that give you 3 or more possible responses. If I
had put this survey together I would be very ashamed to admit it!!

[ Reply to This | # ]

Didio uses Linux for her FUD^h^h^hsurvey!
Authored by: msquared on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:58 AM EST
Kind of funny that Didio's survey was conducted online via Apache/Perl/Linux!

If we assume also that MySql was the database, this makes Didio seem quite the hypocrite using the full LAMP suite to spread Microsoft FUD!


The site is running Apache/1.3.26 (Unix) PHP/4.2.2 mod_perl/1.27 mod_ssl/2.8.10 OpenSSL/0.9.6g on Linux.

view page source the form POST action is: n/

[ Reply to This | # ]

Having a ball @ BrainShare
Authored by: gnutechguy99 on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 10:17 AM EST
I am attending BrainShare and it is great. I saw Linus on the podium with Chris
Stone of Novell. Novell provided hundreds of workstation for attendees without
laptops to use to schedule classess and check email. They of course run SUSE
Linux with the Ximiam desktop. N0 windows machines are provided

As CEO Jack Messerman said "We don't do stinking windows"

Novell also had Sammy Hagar in concert at the Delta Center.

Off to another breakout session ....

[ Reply to This | # ]

Want to "Go" to Novell's Brainshare and See Linus? -- And a Word on Ms. DiDio's "Independent" Survey
Authored by: sunnyfla on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 10:25 AM EST
Here's some fun irony: icle=14946

[ Reply to This | # ]

Totally OT: MS Ripe for Buyout?
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 10:40 AM EST
First, please excuse the complete lunacy of this question, but from my
extraordinarily ignorant understanding of balance sheets and the stock market,
this possibly very stupid question arises.

Wouldn't the best thing for the financial world to do is to start a hostile
takeover of MS, dole out most of the Mountain of cash to the shareholders then
spin off all the units (with a cushion of seed money) to sink or swim on their

Again, I'm sure I've missed something so obvious I should be slapped, but it
seems to me that MS is not properly leveraging all that cash and someone could
do it better.

I also wonder if breaking them apart might lead to much better
"Innovation" once the units weren't tied to the megalomaniac whim du
jour (Can you say MSN? Amen! :) ).

I mean, how much of the investor's cash are they going to blow trying to kill
Google? A battle which they have already lost and will never ever have a chance
to win again now that there is finally some feeble scrutiny of their
anticompetative practices.

While the maniacs have been successful in their anticompetative takeover of the
PC market beyond anyone's wildest dreams, those day are numbered and hence their
time has passed. If you think about it, their takeover of the desktop market, by
hook or by crook, is about the only thing they have been truly great at. This is
not to ignore the boatloads of cash they take in via the PC game market, but
they cetainly don't own that market. Pretty much everything else they have tried
has been a miserable failure. Not everything has been a total loser mind you,
but when you take the PC desktop out of the equation (I include basic
productivty apps like Office in this definition), I'd bet the win/loss equation
adds up to a net loss.

They no doubt made some dough in the server market, but they certainly haven't
been as wildly successful in their hopes of taking that market over the way they
did the desktop. The inertia is gone there.......

Basically, I think the net momentum is gone from MS and it's time to dole out
the cash before B & S burn it up trying to make lightning strike twice.

Buy them out, take the money and run, let the units make the money they can or

Insert flame below:

[ Reply to This | # ]

Ximian video's opening sequence?
Authored by: kcassidy on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 10:41 AM EST
OK. I was watching the video (the first link that PJ posted at the top of the article) and the opening "credits" or what not, with the Novell and Linux promotions with the funky music were going on.

Now, was it just me, or about one minute in, just after the shot of the stuffed penguin, the next shot is of someone in a suit (I don't know who he is but many people here might). Is it just me, or at quick glance does that guy look like William Shatner?

Aside from that, the video was very good. Thank you for posting the link, PJ.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Novell's Reply Brief from 19th March
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 10:58 AM EST
Do we have this filing from the Court yet ?

[ Reply to This | # ]

EC erects toll booth for Microsoft's open source rivals
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 11:06 AM EST
Click Here

Maybe the EU decision has favored Microsoft instead of hindered
them. This is definitely bad news.

[ Reply to This | # ]

One key point missed
Authored by: utahbob55 on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 11:29 AM EST
PJ, One thing that you have not mentioned is that Novell announced that they are
migrating all desktop computers to Linux. Novell just required all employees to
switch to OpenOffice (the new standard for the company) and by the summer
employees will only be allowed Windows on the desktop when a business
application requires it (and since that would require an exception from
management you'll probably see very little Win OS). I myself now use SUSE 9 and
Ximian 2. Haven't found anything I couldn't do before on basic applications. I
admit to wishing I could use some of my Windows based tools but in truth its
just a matter of not knowing the Linux ones as well as I know Windows. I readily
admit that all my troubles right now is just learning curve issues. I honestly
don't think that I'll miss Windows very much once I learn what I'm doing.

By the way Linus was great!

[ Reply to This | # ]

Thanks, Darl
Authored by: blang on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 11:53 AM EST
Because of all the SCO publicity stunts, enterprise customers are no longer
asking their vendors "who's your daddy?", "what's your

They ask "What are you doing with Linux?" or "When will your
product be supported on Linux?", "what is the ROI"?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Just found this: House letter: Windows issue 'not a concern' for EU
Authored by: utahbob55 on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 11:57 AM EST

Just found this article on CNet's
House letter: Windows issue 'not a concern' for EU.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Authored by: pcguido on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 12:21 PM EST
I love NPR and I listen to it exclusively as my "talk radio".

But.... they don't know hoot about computers, computing or the legal/political
ramifications of what happens with same. The only NPR stories you can trust on
these issues are the "Gee-Whiz, isn't that great?" variety; and even
those seem to be very sponsor influenced. Back in the Win95 anti-trust suit
days, NPR was trying to learn what was up -- when Microsoft, god bless their
generosity, contributed lots of PC's and software to help NPR modernize.

Reference Terry Gross's cream-puff interviews with Bill Gates and you've pretty
much covered NPR's acumen on the subject since...

[ Reply to This | # ]

OT: SCO should sue RIAA
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 12:27 PM EST
I apologize if others have posted this before, but here's a hilarious (but very
interesting) article from theInquirer.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Latest Move in Lindows TM Battle
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 12:40 PM EST


[ Reply to This | # ]

DiDio starts to see the light
Authored by: whoever57 on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 01:04 PM EST
This item suggests that DiDio is starting to understand the "Free as in Freedom" aspect:
The chief allure of Linux at this point is not surprisingly the fact that many customers like the idea of "free" licenses. Some 30 percent said they feel Linux is more reliable than Windows and 31 percent said they feel Linux is more secure than Windows, while another 29 percent expressed fears of being locked into an "all Microsoft environment."
Of course smart businesses are not directly concerned with TCO, which so many surveys discuss. The key issue is ROI, of which TCO is merely one component.

For a few laughs, see "Simon's Comic Online Source" at

[ Reply to This | # ]

SunBelt Software
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 01:13 PM EST
Well, as a former employee of Sunbelt I can say that the company was founded on
the premise of filling in the holes windows left open. It resells or writes s/w
that improves the windows experience. And is obviously not at all a Linux shop.
The SysAdmin is a Linux man and loves it but that has nothing to do with their
business direction. I also know they standardly do surveys to see what THEIR
customers are interested in. Didio or MS simply used it out of context as a FUD
As far as religion goes they never gave me any reason for grief and had a really
strong team spirit. It was a lot of fun. Actually I was treated with a lot more
respect than other places have, and in the end I only have admiration for them.
After having worked with them I look at the bad religous angles that some
minorities spread as just more FUD. So does others I know that worked there.
It's easy to buy into FUD when you don't have a personal experience about
something. Didio and company is trying to take advantage of that very fact.
Fortunately we have Groklaw to expose the truth. : )

[ Reply to This | # ]

Patent Threat To E-Commerce
Authored by: JScarry on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 01:23 PM EST

For those of you who haven't been following the PanIP case, they basically claimed that their patents covered all e-commerce.

They took the route of suing several hundred small web stores hoping they'd settle. A group of them fought back and according to their web site, they've prevailed.

"PanIP has dismissed it case against the PanIP Group Defense Fund, Inc. and its individual members in exchange for a waiver of the attorney fee award granted to the PGDF. The PGDF did not take a license of any kind from PanIP.

The validity of both of PanIP's patents (Patent No 5,576,951 & Patent No. 6,289,319) is currently being reviewed by the USPTO in reference to prior art submissions that the PGDF and its legal counsel (Jon Hangartner of Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLC) submitted during this case."

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Speaking of "Go"
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 01:51 PM EST
As reported on Slashdot, the NY Times has an article about the Microsoft case in Minnesota, where some evidence has been introduced on Microsoft's attacks against the Go Corporation in the early nineties. Here are some quotes:

"Among the documents introduced in court this week was a letter from June 1990 in which Bill Gates, Microsoft's chairman, told Andrew S. Grove, the chief executive of Intel at the time, that any support given to the Go Corporation, a Silicon Valley software company, would be considered an aggressive move against Microsoft."

"Other evidence presented by the plaintiffs' lawyers at trial yesterday gave an account of how Microsoft violated a signed secrecy agreement with Go and showed that Microsoft possessed technical documents from Go that it should not have had access to."

"The plaintiffs contend the new documents show that Microsoft violated nondisclosure agreements with Go, and then used that information to build PenWindows, a competitor to Go's PenPoint operating system."

Be aware that the NY Times has started a policy of archiving and charging for access to their article after a week or two, so save a copy if you want to refer to it later.

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Yankee doodle?
Authored by: overshoot on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 02:35 PM EST
The so-called study is internally inconsistent, too:

Yankee found that four percent of Unix customers and eleven percent of Windows businesses plan to replace all of their servers with Linux.


To date, most of the defections to Linux are coming at the expense of mid-range Unix systems and not Windows.

Personally, I find that first conclusion rather useful.

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  • Yankee doodle? - Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 03:35 PM EST
Patent Watch? Could it be done?
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 02:37 PM EST
Would it be possible to monitor the patent filings of a
company with monopolistic tendencies?

Is there a way to challenge predatory filings on the basis
or prior art or common knowledge?

Is there a way to appeal a patent?

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SuSE "mistake"
Authored by: Ares_Man on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 02:51 PM EST
Heh, looking at the SuSE "Linux and Windows" page, SuSE has the following statement:
The Windows emulator "wine" allows you to run various Windows applications in Linux.

Doesn't SuSE know that WINE stands for "WINE Is Not an Emulator"? :P

Heck, no. I won't SCO!

[ Reply to This | # ]
Authored by: xtifr on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 03:03 PM EST
The IFolder link points to a site named Looks like Novell is setting up their own Sourceforge! As a software developer, that, more than anything else, convinces me that they're serious about the whole "open source" thing. They're not just opening up some bits of code here and there; they're setting up a whole infrastructure for collaborative community development!

This is the first "forge" I've seen (aside from the original) that is run by a company, rather than an independant community organization like GNU or Debian. Pretty cool!

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TCO: Total Cost of WHAT ???
Authored by: DarlingMcBribe on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 03:13 PM EST

Correct me if I am wrong, but the TCO = Total Cost of Ownership of a Windows install is northward of $100 billion, because first one would have to buy Microsoft Corp. to own the software!

Have you ever read any of the MS EULA? It grants a licence to use the software with many restrictions, but no ownership whatsoever.

My point is that such TCO studies are fundamentally flawed, because of what is considered ownership is very different between the systems being compared.

Of course, the Linux TCO should always include $699 for the SCO IP, as you are all aware...

IANAL, IANAG, IARASC (I am running a software company)

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Wanna get sued by SCO???
Authored by: sunnyfla on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 03:38 PM EST
Just buy a SCOSource license:

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DOJ criticizes EU's ruling on Microsoft
Authored by: tintak on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 03:45 PM EST
Just read this on Infoworld.

Assistant Attorney General Hewitt Pate the U.S. Department of Justice's
antitrust chief said:-

< The U.S. settlement with Microsoft provides "clear and effective
protection" for competition and consumers by preventing misconduct by
Microsoft that would inhibit competition in the area of middleware applications
such as the Web browser and the media player. >


< The U.S. continues to be active in its enforcement of Microsoft's
compliance with the settlement and this work has resulted in substantial changes
to Microsoft's business practices, according to Pate. >

If he believes what he is saying then he is a fool, if he does not believe what
he is saying.....well.

'it is literally impossible' for SCO to itself provide
direct proof' Mark J. Heise 02/06/04

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This is wrong, & damages Linux
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 04:38 PM EST
So much for retraining costs if you want to switch to GNU/Linux. You don't need retraining to know how to click on an icon.

I share your enthusiasm for Linux, but you harm Linux by grossly overselling it here. People don't spend most of their day working with the operating system, they spend it working with apps like Microsoft Office. Because I use Linux, I have to use OpenOffice, and in all honesty, I have to say that it stinks. It will improve, maybe I will do a tiny bit to help it improve, and eventually it will be good. But today, OpenOffice does not come close to MS Office in general usability. Telling people that the user experience on Linux is as good as Windows, and by implication that OpenOffice is as good as MS Office right now, seriously damages your own credibility.

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IBM - Free your software patents
Authored by: star-dot-h on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 05:00 PM EST
Patents are the real threat to FOSS. If IBM are true supporters they could
really put their money where their mouths are and:

- free up their patents
- lobby for a change in the whole software patenting process

Until then, handle with care.

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MS foot shooting?
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 05:21 PM EST
I wonder just how much of a real threat the patent issue is going to be? I see
MS racking up patents left right and center but I can't see how a sustained
legal attack on GNU/Linux would be a good strategy.

With the building opposition to current Patent and copyright laws, plus the
growing support base for GNU/Linux (HP, IBM, Intel, A number of Govts. and other
medium to large businesses) The pressure on US and Global Govts. to make
sweeping change may get too much.

Even if the inertia in Govts. is too great, does MS really want to get into a
Patent war with companies like IBM? MS may have the coffers, but it would
supprise me if IBM don't have the right patents to humble MS.

On top of that, is the US Govt. willing to let MS show them up again as weak
willed when it comes to anti-trust. Even with the rhetoric about the EU outcome,
the US Govt. has received a bit of a black eye over their own reluctance to
crack down on MS. I don't think there are too many people in this world who can
*not* truely see that MS is doing illegal and quite frankly immoral things to
stay on top.

Is MS willing truely willing to push the Patent button when they could very
easily shoot their own foot off?.

Or am I just being naive? Most likely.


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OT but irresistable : Will SCO sue the RIAA
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 06:01 PM EST
Read all about it here :

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OK, Novell & you guys have convinced me
Authored by: figures on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 06:09 PM EST
I've been using Linux for sometime now, but only for web hosting.

My first experience of Linux was in 1997/8 when I was running behind on a
project to develop an intranet for my department, and didn't have direct access
to the Windows NT server, and the person I asked kept setting all my permissions
wrong on my perl scripts. A collegue convinced me the answer was to run Apache
on a linux distro on a P90, and whilst I thought he was mad, I promised him that
if I could get it up and running first time, I would become a Linux advocate.
Well it worked, and I've gone on to much bigger projects and really wouldn't
host a website on any other environment.

At the time, I can't remember whether it was Gnome or KDE, the desktop seemed
pretty buggy, so I've always felt that Linux was not ready for the Desktop.
Over the past few weeks, thanks to Groklaw, that view is changing.

So last weekend I took the plunge on a little experiement of my own, to see if I
could do my work under Linux. After a lot of problems with resizing my spare
drive to allow for a partition for Linux, I installed Lindows. I was actually
very impressed but the Problem is that my Internet connection is a USB
Speedtouch ADSL modem which is tricky enough to set up under Windows. I kept
loading between Lindows and XP, finding out more info on the web and then trying
it under Lindows, but couldn't get it to work.

So I tried Fedora (I had the distro to hand), and found that being able to
connect to my Windows drives needed some setup.

I've found plenty of instructions on the net for setting up the modem, but I
can't get any to work, and it's very frustrating

Running a Live Disk isn't an option for my journey into Linux Desktops, as I
want to try software such as GIMP and Openoffice, plus others to see if they can
do all the things I would normally do with Windows software.

So my question really is, does anyone know of a good distro that makes it easy
to set up an Alcatel Speedtouch USB modem to connect to the internet via BT in
the UK. I don't want to spend hours downloading ISOs only to find myself in the
same boat.

From the video presentation and what you guys say, it seems that SuSE is
possibly the best distro for me, but if I can't set up the internet
connection...well it's a no go

Also...Anyone know of an email app that can handle the storage of a lot of
emails. I currently use Bloomba which I find excellent, and is the only Email
program I've found (Outlook Express, Outlook, Eudora) that doesn't crash under
the weight of my un-archived emails

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Article about Novells motion to dismiss
Authored by: kedens on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 06:33 PM EST
I was reading an article at
I was very confused when I read the Novell-SCO contract, about what exactly
Novell gave to SCO. SCO says themselves regarding the gpl that you can not
unknowingly give away your rights to your copyrights. If that's true then since
the Novell SCO contract seems ambiguous, then even if you did say that Novell
gave them the copyrights in the contract then surely they did it unkowingly so
using SCO's logic Novell could not give them the copyrights because they didn't
know that they did. Does my logic make sense?

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Court update
Authored by: AdamBaker on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 07:00 PM EST
For the benefit of those who don't read Frank's court documents site I thought
I'd point out that:

1) AutoZone have got an extension until 23 April to file their answer
2) Novell have file 2 documents both of which the court lists as their response
in support of the motion to dismiss - the documents haven't been scanned so
we'll have to wait till someone can visit the court house to see them
3) Nothing has happened so far in the DC case since the complaint was filed
4) IBM and Novell both have filings due tomorrow (Friday) Novell's is in
opposition to SCOs attempt to move the case back to state court so not too
exciting, IBMs is the answer to SCOs 2nd ammended complaint so could give us
some guidance as to what IBMs current line of attack is. Of course we won't see
the documents until some time next week.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Court update
Authored by: AdamBaker on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 07:45 PM EST
For the benefit of those who don't read Frank's court documents site I thought
I'd point out that:

1) AutoZone have got an extension until 23 April to file their answer
2) Novell have file 2 documents both of which the court lists as their response
in support of the motion to dismiss - the documents haven't been scanned so
we'll have to wait till someone can visit the court house to see them
3) Nothing has happened so far in the DC case since the complaint was filed
4) IBM and Novell both have filings due tomorrow (Friday) Novell's is in
opposition to SCOs attempt to move the case back to state court so not too
exciting, IBMs is the answer to SCOs 2nd ammended complaint so could give us
some guidance as to what IBMs current line of attack is. Of course we won't see
the documents until some time next week.

[ Reply to This | # ]

HP whips out patent portfolio
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:16 PM EST
Just when you thought HP was coming around, we get this stupidity: Article Here

[ Reply to This | # ]

linux for moms and dads
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 08:41 PM EST
She has quit using her computer because she can't stand all the problems she has trying to get XP to do what she wants and because of virus, worm, and other security worries, which make her too nervous to be able to enjoy using the computer. She told me she realizes she doesn't know what she is doing, so she figures the only way not to end up a zombie is not to use her computer at all.

This is exactly the same position my father was in a month ago. It was really sad for me to see this, as a computer-literate person. It was also difficult for me to watch the chasm that had opened up between my mother, who was happily using Mac OS X 10.3, and my father, who was using Windows 98.

My father asked me to be "re-trained in linux." That was kind of the last straw: although I've been happily using linux for years, I was uncomfortable asking my father to take the plunge, thinking that it might be too much to bear, and too confusing. However, if he was asking for it....

I am surprised at how well the transition has worked. I'm not going to go into details of the hardware or software setup, but the thing I found interesting was that really, linux circa 2004 really is pretty easy for moms and dads to figure out. Navigating file directories with GNOME or KDE is really not hard, and something that took my father less time to figure out than I'd anticipated. The browsers really do work, and work pretty well.

It's been a month, but I must confess that the number of "support" calls I've received from my father are far less than anticipated. And, to be quite honest, of a greater level of sophistication than I'd ever hoped. Playing DVD's, burning CD-Roms, transferring files to a samba share, ftp, all this stuff that he's doing now... I'm really proud.

Mostly, I'm amazed at the increased level of confidence my father has with using his computer, and using the internet. I'd really not even realized how dehabilitating Windows could be. Now, I feel a bit guilty about waiting this long. (Although, I think in fairness, distros on par with Fedora Core 1 really were the tipping point.)

So, I'd just like to encourage you in this effort. Really, being on-line and comfortable with the internet is no longer a luxury, or an option. It's really important.

[ Reply to This | # ]

PJ's Mom
Authored by: grouch on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 09:26 PM EST
"She has quit using her computer because she can't stand all the problems
she has trying to get XP to do what she wants and because of virus, worm, and
other security worries, which make her too nervous to be able to enjoy using the
computer. She told me she realizes she doesn't know what she is doing, so she
figures the only way not to end up a zombie is not to use her computer at all.
She doesn't want to become part of the problem, so she's using her typewriter
again. Sigh."

I've encountered several people in that situation. So far, the solution each
time has been to set up a custom Linux box for them. Each one I've done this for
was happy to have a simplified setup that just handles their needs. They each
preferred a customized setup over a generalized "desktop". Not
everybody wants to learn how to do it the system's way; they prefer having the
computer adapted to their way.

If you want any help with that system, PJ, just 'holler'.

[ Reply to This | # ]

Biased Survey
Authored by: Anonymous on Thursday, March 25 2004 @ 11:34 PM EST
#4: What is your company's primary server operating system? Novell Netware does not appear on this list. The survey has only an "other" choice to indicate this.

#6: What changes if any will your company make to its server OS environment? Again, no Novell option. This time, there's not even the "other" selection!

The omission of a key competitor reveals the surveyors' bias. The survey is constructed with the assumption that unix, linux, and MS-Windows are the only viable options. Given the animosity between Novell and the MS/SCOG axis, could this be anything but intentional disrepect ?

[ Reply to This | # ]

Thanks for the tips!
Authored by: Anonymous on Saturday, March 27 2004 @ 07:02 AM EST
(Sorry about the double post; this is the first time I've posted on this forum,
and I just realized that I made my first post in the wrong location. Let me give
it another try!)

* * * * * * * * * *

Thank you for all the tips regarding Laura DiDio and the "independent
study" that's being promoted by Mary Jo Foley. I read that article just
today, and I thought something smelled fishy (a lot of things, actually).

I found another article where Foley made some predictions for 2004, then invited
readers to submit their own preditions. I e-mailed her a prediction - that 2004
will see the rise of a new front in the war against Microsoft, the political

It wasn't a tough prediction, because I just announced my candidacy for public
office, and I'm making open source software and Microsoft campaign issues. The
funny thing is, I live in Bill Gates' back yard, Seattle, and I'm running for
state office (though this state's de facto capital is Seattle).

So do you think Ms. Foley will publicize my predition? I announced my campaign
on the 24th - the same day the European Union came down on Microsoft. Yet just
one member of the media has mentioned it so far - a South African high-tech

I also just launched an anti-Microsoft website,,
along with my campaign website at

I'll be adding much more information to both websites, probably including an
article about the "independent survey" that's being discussed on this

If you know of any other open source candidates I can network with, please let
me know. I'd ask Mary Jo Foley, but I suspect she wouldn't share any tips with

David Blomstrom (Replace AT with @)

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The Hindu Times
Authored by: Anonymous on Saturday, March 27 2004 @ 01:00 PM EST
It looks like The Yankee Group found a new fan in The Hindu - "Microsoft
Faces EU's Wrath,"

David Blomstrom

[ Reply to This | # ]

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