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       Time to hang up my Open Source spurs. The battle is over, and Linux has won. Back when I started this series (early April of this year), things very much hung in the balance; Microsoft was stacking the MSOOXML ISO votes, The SCO trial was yet to be decided, and it was unclear whether the suddenly new and improved ease of set up and use in Linux distributions would be noticed, or even take hold around the world.

       Since that time, a number of things have happened, none of them favorable to the convicted monopolist Microsoft, and all of them sweet, sweet music in the ears of Open Source users. The final nail in the coffin was pounded in a couple of days ago, and coming from the most unlikely of sources. But first a quote, and then more after the break:  

Linux is hot again. In fact, there's never been a better time for Microsoft Windows users to give Linux a whirl.

       I did say that it was the most unlikely of sources, did I not? This is why the death knell for the monopoly is that much sweeter. Though they get many points right, there are still a bunch of errors, some quite egregious.

       First some of the things that they get right:

The OS is more usable than ever, easier to install, and more compatible with PC hardware. It still helps to be somewhat tech-savvy to get the most out of Linux, but that's no longer a major requirement.

and this:

Suddenly, installing Linux and getting a PC's hardware to work was no longer solely the province of techies: Pretty well anyone could install it, work with it, and even use it regularly.


Naturally, being FoxNews, they get tons of stuff horrendously wrong, such as this: That was a few years ago. Since then, Linux's fortunes have waxed and waned — mostly waned — but development of this open-source OS and its open-source applications have continued apace.


Possibly because upgrading to Vista costs money, or maybe just because getting a new OS reawakens PC users' enjoyment of experimenting with new software, Linux is cool again.

       Waxed and waned, but mostly waned? WTF? You gotta be kidding. I've been at this for nearly a year, and I've seen and experienced nothing but wax; if fact explosive growth seems a more apt description.  And because Vista costs money? Again with the wtf? How about because it's just so much bleh in a bright and shiny new package, that nobody wants, even if it's free: Businesses are delaying adoption, users are non-plussed (at best), and even if you can it (ahem, torrent) for no charge, it's still no sale, bucko.

       They have a link on the page that takes you to the easy install guide (which I may have to correct in a subsequent post), which you can find here, and the distributions (or distros) that they recommend leave a little to be desired, notwithstanding that they get confused about which are free, and which are not (Slackware is the only free option?)--they even recommend Linspire, which I wouldn't touch with a ten foot pole.

       Finally they list the 'pros' and 'cons'; among the 'pros' they list the fact that hackers don't 'target' Linux (umm, actually no, more secure from stem to stern), that it's free and cheaper than Windows, even with a paid subscription; among the 'cons' they list the 'fact' that you'll soon be at a shell typing commands (not necessary these days), you might not be able to work with 'complex Windows documents' (ha, Open Office, anyone?), and that's it's much harder to update than Windows (double-ha!, that's wrong on so many levels, I don't know where to begin).

       And just for a bit of fun, the (sadly) real reason more and more people are switching to Linux:



Originally posted to fareast on Mon Sep 24, 2007 at 06:05 AM PDT.

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