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Re: doughnuts on a fish hook



William Hooper wrote:

There are some flaws in your reasoning.

Howard Owen said:
[snip]


My point might be
better stated
thus: "If you can possibly afford to do it, Red Hat, you might consider
offering
WS for zero dollars, and without support, just now. The strategic
situation is
such that a stable, low cost desktop platform upon which large support
organizations
can build very large scale deployments would do two things.



Most corporations (right or wrong) view no cost as a disadvantage. When
asking companies for bids for a contract, it is common practice to throw
out the highest and lowest, because the high one is trying to make to much
money and the low one is either cutting corners or not understanding the
job at hand.


Well, where I'm working now, they have rolled out their own desktop
Linux to 1400 customers. The total desktop pool is 16,000.They are
currently based on RHL 7.3. The systems they are replacing are Sparc
workstations, and the cost of hardware and software is the definitive
reason. They pay nothing for the bits that come from Red Hat, but they
put quite a bit of time into doing their own engineering on top of that.
They also hire my employer to help them out with the tougher problems.

So the cost of the bits is not the biggest concern to them, but it is a
factor. They have considered and rejected rolling out WS because of the
cost. They are worried about how errata will work after 7.3, and 8 and
9+ are no longer supported. They will surely have to pay more to
continue supporting their desktop Linux. How this will balance out with
a switch to WS, I don't know. But they have rejected the alternative
thus far, as I said.

The point is, the additional cost WILL affect the rate at which Linux is adopted
here.




First, it
would
accelerate adoption of Linux on the corporate desktop, a trend that is
real and
growing.



Having no support at home isn't that big of a deal. Having no support in a business, with my job on the line if something goes wrong is. There is no way in Hell *I* would do a large scale roll out of an OS without support.



Second, it would ensure that _your_ platform is the most widely
adopted
Linux desktop OS. This would of course give you enormous opportunities
later,
and you wouldn't even have to act like Microsoft to realize them."



As above, low cost doesn't mean widely adopted. You will find out in the Linux space, the distro that gets highest regards is the one the person administrating it is familiar with. This can be changed if third party requirements exist (i.e. Oracle certs for the Enterprise line).



The switch to Linux on the desktop in corporations is absolutely about cost relative to Microsoft.
To the extent that the cost of bits affects the overall cost, it will be a factor.


The real money is in the support. I predict that sales of WS will not amount to much. Give it away and win
a few big support contracts with the penetration that gives you.


--
Howard Owen                     "Even if you are on the right
EGBOK Consultants                track, you'll get run over if you
hbo egbok com    +1-650-339-5733 just sit there." - Will Rogers






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