[Linux-aus] Computerworld: Linux 'not ready' for enterprise IT

Brent Wallis (IS) bw at wallis.id.au
Tue Aug 12 14:07:01 UTC 2003

Hi David,

David Lloyd <dlloyd at microbits.com.au> wrote ..
> > RedHat Network seems well suited. 
> It is...and it's not altogether different from what the Debian security
> folks attempt to achieve.

> > Yep, installing individual RPMS for upgrades can be a bastard, but why
> > bother when RH do all that via RHN?
> Vendor lock in.

Disagree, rather, a deliberate choice based on the facts at the time. 

If the circumstances dictate a change at the end of the hardware cycle, then a move to a different distribution would not be out of the question. I have chosen ease and stability, not lock in. 

These are static installs with mature applications software installed.
All I really need to do is keep track of security issues and update where required. RHN enables this in a hands off manner, with plenty of online information and hoistory.
> > You see, laziness is a virtue. I could choose to run each patch
> > individually and suffer the consequences of a never ending dependency
> > loop, but why bother when it's all there and done for a paultry yearly
> > cost?
> See above.

See below the above...;-)
> > 4)Have not a productive bone in their bodies and spend their time smoking
> > up the room to hide their own inadequate approach to their job. 

Yes, the BOFH lives and breathes in several sites around Melbourne.
> > > "That the Debian packaging system--with its configuration tools,
> > > priority levels and in-built dependency handling--coupled with a tightly
> > > controlled, peer reviewed, open source repository is flawed and likely
> > > to increase a system administrator's workload."
> > > Now, go prove it...
> > 
> > You see,this is where I reckon the FOSS paradigm works so well. 
> > I don't have to prove anything, it's the demand on a particular package
> > which matters most. IMHO , low demand for a FOSS product equates to there
> > not being a need for it, or that there is a fundamental flaw in it's
> > approach. The latter often addressed by a code fork if the "demand" is
> > there.
> True but that has nothing to do with my null hypothesis.

Then I have missed the point and maybe you should bang my skull a little harder.
What do you mean to convey by your null hypothesis?
>But it is to a certain extent a downside. What if you don't want to think
>about choices...isn't that why you install RedHat?

Oh but I did think about choices... very carefully. 
I made a deliberate choice based on the facts at the time. In my small world, one of the problems with FOSS is the rapid development cycle. It is difficult for business to keep up. What's more, smaller ISVs have trouble keeping their apps compatable. Standardisation and extended support cycles like those that exist in RH ES distro's mean that there is no fundamental fiscal excuse for companies like MYOB to continue ignoring the growing demand. They can no longer plead the "it's too expensive to keep up with the Linux updates" because there is now a version which gaurantees 5 years worth of support.

I honestly believe that the last "thread" holding up the MS model is this very issue. They have made it "easy for numbats" to develop on Windows, and it's this _perceived_ "ease" standing in the way of ISVs really looking more closely at the advantages of FOSS, an ddeveloping for it.

Please note also that I have have known to install a Win2k box here and there where it suits. The key issue is the choice and willingness to change when the situation dictates you must. It all depends on the environment in which the OS has to exist. If value for money is a key issue, then using that as a starting point and working back to a solution can bring up varied results. 

In a "majority" Windows environment, _sometimes_ , changing the entire infrastructure would not be a prudent fiscal exercise. 

IMHO, this is really what constitutes vendor lockin, ie, a situation where so much money has been spent on infrastructure that a fundamental change means financial stress and boardroom embarassment. The latter is more prevalent than you can imagine. There are many networks out there that should be changed, but to do so would bring down the wrath of shareholders.

All is not lost however, I just look at these as opportunities for the next cycle of change. 


More information about the linux-aus mailing list