Fwd: Is Yahoo! moving from FreeBSD?

Ted Mittelstaedt tedm at toybox.placo.com
Fri Feb 25 08:01:30 GMT 2005

> -----Original Message-----
> From: owner-freebsd-questions at freebsd.org
> [mailto:owner-freebsd-questions at freebsd.org]On Behalf Of Anthony
> Atkielski
> Sent: Thursday, February 24, 2005 9:02 AM
> To: freebsd-questions at freebsd.org
> Subject: Re: Fwd: Is Yahoo! moving from FreeBSD?
> Daniel writes:
> > would not these things be worthy of implementing in FreeBSD? this way
> > other big companies would use it, pay you guys for it and
> FreeBSD will
> > grow stronger...
> There are other obstacles to deployment of FreeBSD in large
> organizations.  The main one is a lack of formal, guaranteed support.
> This afflicts Linux, also, to some extent, depending on the
> distribution.  Even for "supported" Linux distributions, the support is
> often very limited in comparison to that available for systems such as
> Solaris, Windows, or even Mac OS X.

Not for Red Hat, at least not anymore.  The entire reason for making
Red Hat commercial was to emulate as closely as possible the same type
of $upport $tructure and co$ts that Microsoft provides.

> The problem is that the largest companies need more than just a
> technically superior operating system.  That's why they are
> still buying
> Solaris and Windows.

This is a gross simplification of the realities.

The reality is they are still buying Solaris because the back end apps
they run on it - big company apps that is, like Peoplesoft and SAP -
require it.

And they are still buying Microsoft Windows because they don't have a
choice - because the low-end desktop computers that business purchase
all come with Windows preloaded on it.

And they are still buying Microsoft Office because their users are
demanding it.

But if you think that support is the reason for large companies
buying Windows, I have a bridge to sell you.  Every large company
admin I've ever talked to with a Microsoft support contract
all say that their paid support sucks.  The only good thing I've
ever heard about Microsoft support was the per-incident Developer
support, which is $250 per incident, and is handled by a completely
separate group than the regular paid support.

Microsoft understood years ago that if you want to lock in the
business market, the key is to lock in the application developers to
your platform.  Businesses if given a choice would go for Linux -
but they aren't given a choice because the applications they want
to run don't run on Linux - because Microsoft has in many cases
told those application developers that if they offer Linux versions
of their products, they won't get the same level of support from
Microsoft than if they remain loyal.  (this is one of the behaviors
that was stopped by the antitrust trial - however, many ISV's still
to this day will tell you that they believe they get better support
from Microsoft if they don't support Linux)

Years ago I worked for Symantec, and it is this very reason why for
years no Symantec applications were offered for Linux.  At the time
the CEO, Gordon Eubanks (who was apparently pushed out of or got
tired of Symantec around 2000 or thereabouts) prohibited development
along those lines.  (Eubanks was asked in 1999 by Bill Gates to
testify in support of Microsoft at the antitrust trial)  This was
done solely to enable the Symantec development team to get inside
information about Windows from Microsoft.

This also is why Microsoft fought the idea of divestiture of Office
applications which was proposed as a remedy for the trial. (indeed,
it's the only remedy that made any sense at all)  With Office apps
supplied by a different company post-trial, it would be illegal for
them to give special data to the Office company in exchange for
preventing a port of Office to Linux.  Since they own Office and
have succeeded in killing off all other business office suite vendors,
they can prevent new ones from getting a foothold by using their
inside information tricks, and they can refuse to port to Linux.

None of these dirty tricks are "needed" by businesses, contrary to
your assertions.


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