324 Codifer Blvd. #9
New Orleans, LA 70005
KellyNet Computer Services
Integrating Linux into the Windows network.
"Why should I use Linux?"
Linux is Open Source Software.
- Open source applications are licensed under the GPL (GNU Public License) or other non-proprietary licenses.
- All of the source code for Linux and other OSS (Open Source Software) is freely available for inspection.
- Industry standards and best practices are adhered to whenever possible.
- OSS programs are extensible by anyone with the knowledge and skills to do so.
Linux is more secure.
- As a result of the GPL, Linux and OSS applications are subject to merciless peer review by competent programmers, security experts, software engineers, system administrators, etc. This atmosphere fosters:
- Sound coding practices.
- Quick discovery of coding errors (bugs). Quite often a bug is discovered, fixed, and patches are distributed for it, all in matter of hours. Other vendors sometimes wait months before acknowledging that their software has faults in it.
- Programmers end up following the KISS principle: program configurations and settings are stored in text files found in well-known locations on the filesystem, instead of being hidden behind GUIs and NDAs (Non-Disclosure Agreements), or buried in indecipherable registries.
- Linux is immune to Windows viruses, worms, trojans, spyware, etc.. This is because OSS has fewer bugs, and because hackers mainly write malware (malicious software) that targets ubiquitous Windows operating systems and applications.
Linux has better solutions.
- When it comes to networking services (firewalls, email servers, web servers, DNS servers, file servers, spam and virus filters, NIDS, VPNs, etc.), Linux and OSS beat Windows solutions hands-down, and more often than not Linux is a better solution than Cisco and other vendors.
- Other applications such as database servers, inventory and accounting packages, ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) and CRM (Customer Relationship Management) packages, point-of-sale applications, and many other types of programs run quite well on Linux.
- Linux is also for desktops. Linux PCs running the KDE desktop environment and OpenOffice.org's office suite interoperate seamlessly with Windows PCs in an office setting.
- Linux is very stable and reliable. "Blue screens" are nonexistent on Linux; in fact, Linux itself rarely crashes, and if an application hosted on a Linux server does crash, that program can usually be killed and restarted with no ill effects to the operating system. Linux servers regularly run for months and even years with little or no problems, and usually only need rebooting when the kernel or a critical operating system component is upgraded. Likewise, Linux desktop installations are very stable.
- The Linux architecture is such that the operating system and its utilities aren't dependent upon the desktop environment. Also, the philosophy behind Linux enables programmers and power users to be more productive. Taken together, Linux is inherently more powerful than other operating environments.
- LAMP (Linux, the Apache webserver, the MySQL database engine, and PHP or Perl) enables programmers to quickly develop powerful and secure cross-platform business applications. LAMP is regarded by O'Reilly and Associates, the popular technical books publisher, as one of the best development environments available today.
Linux is less expensive.
- Linux has a lower TCO (Total Cost of Ownership):
- The Linux kernel, operating system utilities, and most applications are free. Boxed distributions (packaged collections of Linux and applications, ready to install on a computer) are affordably priced, and can often be downloaded for free.
- Linux itself has no per-seat licensing, forced upgrades or vendor lock-in. However, proprietary applications such as Oracle that run on top of Linux often retain their restrictive licensing clauses.
- Older computers that cannot run the latest versions of Windows and Office can be "recycled" by installing Linux on them. A Pentium-90 PC serves very well as a firewall or email server, while a 500 MHz Pentium-III is able to run desktop applications in an office environment.
- Less downtime due to viruses, worms and other malware means more productivity and less money spent paying technicians' salaries or consultants' fees.
- Money otherwise spent on Windows maintenance can be reinvested in senior-level Linux technicians who possess a higher level of expertise and provide better support and smarter solutions, thus boosting productivity and further lowering costs.
Linux has better support.
- Linux is supported by industry heavyweights (IBM, Novell, Sun, Oracle, etc.).
- Enterprise support by vendors and consultants is available for those needing such.
- A growing number of technicians are becoming competent on the Linux platform, thus insuring the availability of support for Linux and OSS.
- Free support is available on the Internet. Usenet, mailing lists, Google, IRC and other forums are very effective means of finding solutions for issues involving Linux and OSS. Questions posted on the right forum are usually answered hours or even minutes later by professionals that use the particular software in question. Quite often such questions are answered by the program developers themselves.
- Linux is used by an ever-increasing number of companies, governments, etc. (NASA, NSA, NYSE, Germany, Japan, Israel, India, Houston, to name a few).