Microsoft Windows apps versus Linux and open source

How does Linux compare to Windows in 2006? Experts weigh in on that question in these articles, comparing the operating systems' security, reliability and usability. Get insiders' views on Microsoft's proprietary stack versus open source software, as well as Windows-to-Linux migration tips.

Windows vs. Linux

How does Linux compare with Windows in 2006? Experts weigh in on that question in these articles, comparing the operating systems' security, reliability and usability. Get insiders' views on Microsoft's proprietary stack versus open source software, as well as Windows-to-Linux migration tips. If you think we missed something, email us!



 Industry trends and news:

  • SugarCRM CEO Roberts: On Microsoft and open source CRM
    SugarCRM has taken on proprietary vendors with much success. Now CEO John Roberts believes the old guard systems are set to be surpassed permanently by open source.

  • Engineer's take on Novell's new SuSE desktop, server, Linux roadmap
    Novell's new SuSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 (SLED 10) is beating Microsoft Vista to market by months, and the Xen virtualization features in the upcoming SuSE Enterprise Server are right on target. In short, Novell's Linux roadmap looks great. Now, can Novell get business customers to travel its road?

  • Oracle vs. Microsoft: The open source factor
    Many IT pros believe Oracle's recent endorsements of the open source movement were designed specifically to destabilize Microsoft.

  • Microsoft's high prices drive FSW to Linux, open source
    Microsoft's high costs and pricing policies are driving FSW Inc. into the arms of the open source community. The company's IT director describes how and why FSW switched to Linux and open source apps and to server virtualization and OpenOffice desktops.

  • Terpstra: Don't choose or pitch Linux, open source just for cost savings
    In this interview, Samba team co-founder and author of "Hardening Linux," John H. Terpstra, advocates finding the best fit for your IT organization.

  • Migrating mission-critical enterprise apps to Linux platforms: No big deal
    More and more companies are taking advantage of the savings gained from migrating mission-critical enterprise apps to Linux platforms, especially SAP and Oracle users. Hardware vendors are jumping on the bandwagon too by offering cheap, scalable hardware.

  • 2006 phish tales: Worse on Linux or Windows?
    Phishing expert Lance James differentiates between media hype and legitimate security concerns. He exposes Windows and Linux flaws.

  • Preaching the virtues of Linux
    The business community's resistance isn't holding back Linux desktop adoption, says Linux expert Peter van der Linden. It's the development community that is slowing things down. Van der Linden describes the app gap and other barriers in this interview.

  • Linux desktop adoption barriers: Open source apps development and integration
    Find out why one desktop advocate thinks that most sys admins and developers couldn't care less about the upcoming Vista release and how the Linux desktop remains ahead of the game.

  • OS middleware, Linux desktop high on HP's agenda
    According to HP's Linux leader, middleware and the desktop adoption are the next frontiers for Linux. Find out why HP wants to have a stake in the emerging Linux desktop market.

  • Scalix founder: New e-mail release Microsoft-friendly and Microsoft rival
    Scalix 10 is both Microsoft-friendly and bad news for Microsoft, says Scalix's founder in this interview. Scalix 10, a new Linux-based e-mail release, was unveiled today at the Open Source Business Conference in San Francisco.

  • Two ways Microsoft sabotages Linux desktop adoption
    Microsoft may not make flawless software, but its proprietary strategy is hard to fault. In particular, Microsoft has mastered desktop lock-in, undermining users' confidence in any alternatives and creating a slew of minor difficulties that irritate those who do switch.

Chapter downloads:
  • Comparing Windows to Linux in Chapter 1 of Linux Administration: A Beginner's Guide
    Read Chapter 1, "Technical Summary of Linux Distributions and Windows 2003," which deals with a history of Linux, explains the kernel and general terminology of Linux.

  • Server-side Windows vs. Linux: Considering today's differences
    Although the two systems offer fairly comparable features these days, Linux and Windows still have some differences. Serdar Yegulalp examines those differences in this column.

  • Switching the enterprise to OSS: Directory services
    Writer Frank van Wensveen describes the components for migrating directory services to open source, what to look for when configuring OpenLDAP and Samba and steps you can take to ensure a trouble-free migration.

  • How to switch an enterprise to OSS, part two
    Learn the right way how to plan for worst-case scenarios, assessing system inventories and rollouts when you migrate your commercial software to OSS in a corporate environment.

  • Middleware application servers: Loosening the constraints of proprietary lock-in
    Consider Red Hat's Java EE-based JBoss as the open source, enterprise-ready answer to your Windows-to-Linux migrations. This application server comes with migration program support services and certified system integrators to facilitate enterprise-level migration.

  • Enterprise open source migrations: Dealing with file services
    File services look simple enough, but file services are probably the most critical networking service of all, save directory services. Get an overview of the file service options in the open source world and learn how to use them to replace their traditional commercial counterparts.

  • Migrating applications from Linux/Unix to Windows (or vice versa)
    If you're planning a Win-to-Lin migration, it's important to consider how factors like platform-specific and -independent apps and source-ported apps will affect your future.

Expert advice:
  • Beta flaws vs. security flaws
    Security expert James Turnbull explains why beta flaws can be mistaken for security threats and compares desktop security between Linux and Windows.

  • The cost of changing desktops
    Open source software and apps expert Bernard Golden explains why jumping from Microsoft Office to OpenOffice isn't as difficult as some people think.

  • Support: Bigger isn't always better
    Open source apps and software expert Bernard Golden explains why a bigger company doesn't necessarily mean better support.

  • Open source tools for Windows-to-Linux migration
    Open source software and apps expert Bernard Golden gives advice on how tools like Samba can add your Win-to-Lin migration.

  • Easing the migration from Windows to Linux
    Open source issues and strategies expert Maria Winslow gives guidance on how to smooth the corporate feathers for Linux migration.

  • Straightforward desktop use with SLED 10
    Open source software and applications expert Bernard Golden recommends checking your printing and file server infrastructure to make sure they are compatible for the Linux desktop.

  • Finding proprietary office suite alternatives running on Linux
    Expert Bernard Golden recommends proprietary office suite alternatives to OpenOffice that will run on Linux such as StarOffice and Corel WordPerfect.

  • How secure is desktop Linux versus Windows?
    Expert James Turnbull compares and contrasts security attributes of Linux and Windows on the desktop.

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