Skip to comments.3 Good Reasons To Buy an Open-PC (Linux)
Posted on 03/05/2011 4:32:42 AM PST by decimon
For many small business users, all the rational arguments for using open source software like Linux make a great deal of sense: It's free, customizable, compatible, and it's free of vendor lock-in, to name just a few.
When it comes down to the wire at purchase time, however, many fall prey to one or more of the frequently perpetuated myths out there, and vague fears of incompatibility or a lack of support or something else drive them right back into Redmond's waiting arms.
One way to make the notion of a Linux-based computer less worrisome for such users is to buy hardware preloaded with Ubuntu, Canonical's version of the open source operating system. That can go a long way toward ensuring that everything "just works" out of the box, and I've already discussed good ways and places to do this.
As of December, however, another option emerged that's well worth checking out--it's even better, in fact, from the perspective of software freedom. It's called the Open-PC, and it offers "a PC for everyday use built by the Linux community for the Linux community," in the project's own words.
With three models to choose from--two built and sold in Europe and one through ThinkPenguin in the United States--the Open-PC has several key advantages that could make it the right choice for your small business. Here are just a few to consider.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
Some people would rather build a heathkit tv so they can be “free of vendor lock-in” by the likes of the evil magnavox empire.
1. You will no longer be bothered by vendor software upgrades since they will not be compatible with your computer, since most vendor software is written to run in Windows.
2. Your hand writing and mathematics skills will improve greatly since you will now be communicating the old fashion way.
3. By embracing the opinion of an English major, writing for a tech publication, but who would rather be writing for a mainstream media operation, you will be viewed as someone no one will want to do business with.
Using Linux for business makes no sense at all, unless you do not plan on having customers.
Linux is great for single function servers but as a desktop solution is still badly lacking.
As an IT professional my love/hate relationship with Microsoft often bubbles over and I and my IT buddies try to replace it with a Linux solution.
I really like Linux and run Ubuntu on a PC at the house. It is NO WHERE NEAR READY for mainstream useage.
Too many things require ActiveX to work, and that is all Microsoft.
I agree completely. I do run linux servers at the office, but there is not a linux distro that is complete enough yet for the average everyday user who has no critical thinking skills. To my dismay, there are daily occasions when i have to use WINE, or worse yet, boot Windows.
My family has teased me about using Linux for years. Since I started dual-booting our main home PC with Windows and Ubuntu and they’ve used both, I find that they all prefer Ubuntu.
Ubuntu boots way faster than Windows. It’s ready to surf the Internet in about 25 seconds. Windows takes almost 3 minutes to load all the crap before it is surf-ready.
We have a HP All-In_one printer/scanner/copier/fax. The HPLIP Linux drivers just work, and were only about 2MB in size. HP’s drivers for the Windows system: 200+ MB, and they still don’t work worth a crap and are always using up CPU cycles and memory looking for updates.
Ubuntu worked just fine from the moment of installation, including the wireless network adapter.
Open Office will open and save everything that MSOffice will(sometimes better—especially if you have an older version of Office and don’t want to spend $300 on a newer version with little to show for the cash outlay), and actually has a few nice little features that MSOffice doesn’t (like the handy “Export to PDF” button).
I once had a good laugh while on the internet when a “Windows Security Alert” popped up to tell me that Windows was infected with a virus and that I had to buy this software to fix it. I was on Ubuntu at the time. Yes, there is a Linux virus scan on Ubuntu, just in case. But I don’t really worry about viruses and such.
The only thing that Windows can do that Ubuntu can’t is run most video games. I think that’s the only reason I keep it on my computer. Now that I think about it, I believe I’ll migrate all of the data, pictures, and music on my Windows partition to Ubuntu, purge it of everything but games, and resize it accordingly. Windows has become the red-headed step child of my family’s PC.
Tell that to the young lad from IT of a small machine shop I met in a class over 3 years ago. He went with either Early Ubuntu or Red Hat and was running CNC cutting etc and the entire office off this OS to save money. I lost touch with him, during the auto downturn I hope their customer base was non DCC-GM centric and I hoped they survived.
There’s one pretty compelling reason to go for Linux on the desktop even in the corporate environment, and that’s Desktop Virtualisation or Application Virtualisation.
I recently saw a Quest vWorkspace VDI (virtual desktop infrastructure) implementation. It blew my socks off.
The administrators no longer have to worry if a computer has got the right OS, or the right patches, drivers, antivirus, a certain amount of memory, doesn’t have App X installed on it because that breaks App Y, and so on.
They’ve got stripped-down PCs that don’t have anything except the VDI software installed, and are using proximity badges and the builtin cameras on the monitors, to identify the user at the keyboard.
Sit at a machine and tap the proximity reader - boom there’s your applications. Get out of the chair, within ten seconds the screen locks because the camera saw you walk away. Sit at another machine at another desk, tap the reader, and there’s your applications from the first machine.
Say you get halfway into writing a Word document up and go to browse for a picture to add, and realise the file is sitting on your iPad. Simple. Log into your iPad. The screen locks on the desktop PC, and Word appears on your iPad, with your document still open and Word still waiting for you to browse for that picture. Only now you can grab the file from the iPad. Need to put it on a Linux PC? Log into it. There’s your Word session, again. File, Save As. Job done.
This is sexy stuff (if you’re a nerd) but a bean-counter will wet himself because of the implications.
You can make a Linux image with the VDI client software included, that’ll run on any machine that’s not quite powerful enough to cope with Windows 7.
Bingo - no “we’re short on Windows 7 licenses”, no “the machines in Marketing need bigger hard disks”, no more “OurApp v8 needs a RAM upgrade”. And if the usable life expectancy of old computers can easily be doubled overnight - even tripled - without any expenditure on them, then Linux allows the IT department to make significant cuts in spending without any detrimental impact on the service.
To prove the point, my customer took an old Pentium III with 512MB of RAM and a measly 8GB hard drive out of a cupboard, wiped it with the same Linux disk he uses on new thin client PCs, kickstarted the setup, and walked away.
An hour later I went back to that machine, and it was sat on the login screen. I logged into the virtual desktop and fired up Word 2010 - the entire process from hitting “Log In” to being able to type into a new document, took about eight seconds.
...says the person who obviously has no clue about what he's talking about.
Open Office? Well, yes, uh... Ahahahahah-Ohohohoho-Oohoohoo...sniff, sorry, please stop...
(Just kidding mostly) - we use linux all the time. OO does make my hair hurt occasionally but I find myself using officey-type software less and less anyways these days.
Don’t understand all the folks with anti-business linux posts.
I’ve run my business on almost all linux based pc’s for several years now. There’s not a client I have that can detect that my “.doc and .xls” pages are generated from Open Office and not a Microsoft product.
Almost every person that’s worked for me in the last 5 years has asked me “how much would it cost” to put our office OS on their home system.
The single drawback for businesses like mine (< 20 employees) is the lack of a drop in replacement for quickbooks. We’ve got one legacy windows box (off network) for the single purpose of running quickbooks.
Other than that, I’ve been quite pleased with ubuntu on my laptop, and OpenSuse on the desktops. Actually I’m sitting in a coffee shop right now and have already had someone ask me how I can “spin” my desktop and “wobble” the windows when I move them. I can hardly imaging working on a lame windows “single desktop” environment anymore.
Yeah, but you have to waste time with other than good games. ;-)
Weve got one legacy windows box (off network) for the single purpose of running quickbooks.
I like that. That you have a network needn't mean that everything must be on it. Nothing wrong with sneakernet.
Wow, my business uses linux. Of course, being in telecom, Windows doesn’t really work to well. Perhaps if you write a lot docs and don’t need a system that can run high throughput, Windows might be for you.
Yeah, running an old windows box connected to a network means that eventually someone is going to go online, which means either paying for some goofy security software and or tech time or certain disaster.
Not anxious to put all of our financial transactions into the public domain!
It's called ignorance.
[Using Linux for business makes no sense at all, unless you do not plan on having customers. ]
Well then, I guess I should shut down my Linux box where I run all my websites and my real estate database. I’m only down to a handful of apps that are Windows only (my MLS link through Internet Explorer, and some Word documents which I could use in OpenOffice, actually, that’s about it).
I do our office programming in Java and mysql with Netbeans for the development environment, that alone will save $10s of thousands over the years in license fees. But I guess I R not too smart.
My main desktop PC at home is a dual-boot XP Pro/Ubuntu box. I only run Windows when I absolutely must have Excel, Word or Publisher. Open Office is still a little clunky and often deals poorly with .docx formatting. Quickbooks is also a Win must.
For everything else, I use Ubuntu. Since I’m the only one who does anything particularly advanced in the way of formatting or accounting, everyone else who uses that computer sticks with Linux. It gives them a 100% safe web surfing tool that starts and runs fast.
Gnome Mahjong has addicted pretty much everyone who has ever sat down at that computer.
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