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October 25, 2006

Linux and FOSS receive their first full support from Microsoft

by @ 6:53 am. Filed under General Linux, My Opinion

Yep, I do write a lot about how I detest Microsoft. That’s the *RANTS* part of SUSE LINUX RANTS…. it should actually be read SUSE/LINUX/RANTS. Nitroglycerin seems a better description for me than Nitrogen. The latter does not really react with anything, while the former very much does, being just a bit unstable. OK, a lot unstable.

Moving right along…

I stumbled upon this article which discusses the new Vista EULA. The basic premise is that you will have the right to install it on one computer at a time, for a maximum total of two. After that, you are just left out in the cold. Your only option after that is to purchase another license.

The article quotes the EULA as follows:

“The first user of the software may reassign the license to another device one time.”

Is everyone paying attention?

The only logical explanation I can find for this behavior is that Microsoft is tired of having the majority of the market share. Apparently, that is their way of telling people to use other alternatives. Like Linux, for example. You see, I think the days of good old M$ are numbered. It seems like a lot of M$ execs lately have either flown the coop or have announced that they will be leaving. Apparently, they know something that open source users also know, but the M$ fanbase does not: M$ has seen the peak of their reign.

With all the delays in Vista, all its great new features dropped, the license, the hardware requirements, and all such unfortunate related situations, it’s a disaster waiting to happen. What’s funny is that Linux users will hardly even feel any of the negative fallout of this. As a matter of fact, people are already starting to realize that they don’t have to pay a company many hundreds of dollars for indentured servitude. Really, when considering Windows and its users, which is the master and which is the slave?

All that said, people are realizing that there’s no need to pay all that money for something so bloated, resource-hungry, and otherwise without unique benefit. There is no need to have an aneurism worrying about viruses and spyware infesting your computer. No need to justify pirating the OS because you can’t afford it. With how far the big Linux players have come (e.g., openSUSE, Ubuntu, Fedora, Mandriva, etc.), one of them can very likely satisfy the requirements you have for your OS. You just want to point and click and never have to even think about the command line? SUSE will gladly provide that for you.

The other thing is that, while Linux may still be a bit underpolished in an aspect or two, look at it this way: M$ has been making OSes for over 20 years now. Vista is the best they can do. Linux has been around for a little over 10 years. It has reached a maturity point where it is perfectly capable of performing as an enterprise desktop (a la Novell’s SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10). It is not plagued with the gaping security holes and design flaws that haunt M$ OSes.

Linux has come a very long way in just over 10 years, and it will ONLY get better from here. That is the part that I really enjoy. The incredible progress of Linux has become even more apparent through projects like the development of XGL. That is like a beacon to the world that Linux is not just for technical wizards anymore. The open source community is interested, focused, and actively pursuing ways to make Linux more accessible to people who want their OS to “Just Work.”

M$ has seen its prime, and is only going downhill (probably won’t go away any time soon, though). Linux growth continues to explode, and is only getting better in leaps and bounds. And it doesn’t get viruses. And it’s free. And so is 99.9% of the software that runs on it. And it can likely do what you need. And it is very, very powerful. And people are realizing all of this. In an effort to drive this point home to everyone, M$ came up with this ingenius idea to put in the “Reassign to another device” clause. Absolutely brilliant.

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