Linux in the news
All in one big page
See also: last week's Linux in the news page.
The character of the press coverage of Linux has changed considerably over
the last few months. Gone are the introductory articles and the general
"Linux is hot" pieces. Instead, by far the largest part of the press
coverage of Linux this week had to do with business in one form or
Business articles as a whole are down below, but, first, here's this week's
- The folks over at LinuxPower have run
an interview with Mozilla's Jamie Zawinski. "...I use Linux,
and have been, off and on, since 1994. It's like a love-hate
relationship, but without the love... Linux sucks. But Linux sucks
- This week's
Petreley column in InfoWorld is about Linux and Intel. "The problem
for Intel is that Microsoft keeps making Windows fatter, slower,
buggier, and more expensive. That means Wintel-based computing is
less competitive with higher-priced RISC architectures than it
should be. Enter Linux. Linux offers the speed, stability, and
scalability that is lacking in Windows NT."
- John Markoff has
a column about Wine in the New York Times. "Each incremental
Wine improvement offers evidence of the growing strength of the
so-called open source software movement, a quasi-spiritual
commitment by engineers within the software industry whose deity is
the Linux operating system." (NY Times is a
registration-required site). (Thanks to Douglas Ridgway).
- Jesse Berst
comments on the latest announced delay in "Windows 2000." "What's a
poor customer to do? More and more of them are answering that
question with 'switch to Linux.' And choosing Linux over NT will
get even easier next month when Compaq partners with Red Hat
Software to preload Linux on its servers and to offer 24x7
support." (Thanks to James Thompson and Joao Carlos).
- Amusement of the week: here's some
Bold and fearless predictions for 1999 from Computer Currents.
"Computer magazine reviews trash the Linux user interface.
Disgruntled Linux zealots storm the offices of PC World and PC
Magazine but find only empty cubicles. Hand-written invitations to
Bill Gates' summer slumber party confirm the nerds' worst fears."
- Need to Know
mentionedEric Raymond's talks in London. "...ERIC S RAYMOND,
editor of The New Hacker's Dictionary, author of The Cathedral And
The Bazaar, Neo-Pagan, Anarchist Wacko and Saint, will be taking
*your* questions - and because of our tyrannical gun laws, he'll be
OK, here comes a pile of general Linux and business coverage...
And here is a mixture of the rest of the press out there.
- Sm@rt Reseller ran a review of Netware for Linux. The review is quite positive, pointing
out how a full Netware implementation will help to place Linux into many
corporate environments. "Making the case for Linux to your
customer will be a lot easier when you can manage Linux servers with the
power of NDS, while still running Linux applications." It's
distressing how much the PC mindset has taken over, though: they were
pleasantly surprised that they could run Apache on the system after
- Sm@rt Reseller also has this articleabout Pacific HiTech's move into the U.S. "Coming out in March will be
Pacific HiTech's new TurboLinux Enterprise Server 3.0, bundled with
numerous apps, including five licenses for the Oracle 8 database. Miller,
eyeing the higher-end corporate marketplace, is mulling over a starting
price of several thousand dollars."
- PC World has run
a highly positive review of the Cobalt Qube 2 server.
"Overall, I was impressed with the Qube 2. It is a fine example
of how Linux and other open-source tools can be used in a business
- Information Week also ran
a brief article about the new Cobalt Qube.
- Windows will be superceded within five years, according to
this BBC article. Interestingly, this information comes from
Microsoft's Nathan Myhrvold. "It's virtually certain Windows
will be superseded by something else within the next five years.
In fact, something may already exist, so today the seeds of the
next contender to Windows - maybe its Linux...may be there now."
- This National Post article is ostensibly about Corel's return to
profitability, but it degenerates into one of the stronger "no
support" attacks that has come along in a while. "If you're
going to storm the castle gates with a computer that just runs on
Linux, I would not be interested in investing in your company."
(Thanks to "aandres").
- Internet Week ran
an interview with Jeff Papows (President and CEO of Lotus) that
touches briefly on the Linux announcement.
InternetWeek: You've changed direction on Linux, and now say
you'll offer a port for it. What happened?
Papows: People both inside and outside the company were
bugging me, [but] at the time I just didn't want to be
distracted. It turned out once we got the R5 work done, it was
actually very minimal work necessary to get a Linux version done.
also coversthe Lotus Notes for Linux announcement. "But this doesn't mean
we're going to provide open source, or any freeware, so checks and
money orders are still welcomed." (Found in
- ComputerWorld speculates on
Informix's upcoming announcement on increased Linux support. "Though
Informix officials declined to give further details, they did say
that after noting 19,000 downloads of the Linux version of the
database, the company will bring support for the system on par with
its Windows NT and Unix versions."
- Loki Entertainment Software and their quest to port commercial
games to Linux are the subject of
this brief LA Times article. "The game industry is a business
where development costs are very high... So far, they're willing to
do anything to find new ways to bring in additional revenues for
their already successful titles."
- Network World Fusion has
an article about SGI's ambivalent attitude toward Linux.
"SGI's official interest in Linux was short-lived - it peaked
early and seemingly waned quickly after. In summer 1996, the
company hired an intern to port Linux to SGI's Indy
workstation. The intern, who also ported Linux to Sun's SPARC, left
soon after finishing the kernel part of the SGI/Linux port. The
company has not filled this Linux position." Said intern was,
of course, kernel hacker David Miller. (NW Fusion is a
registration-required site). (Found in
- Computer Reseller News has not just
twoarticles about a recent reseller poll they did. The result?
"Sixty-two percent of the 200 resellers surveyed said Linux
would be a viable platform in the enterprise market, an alternative
to Windows and other Unix variants. Fifty-eight percent of
resellers said the same for Linux in the small-company market."
- PC World ran
an article about the new Corel Netwinder server. "While the GS
competes with stand-alone, plug-and-play intranet server devices
such as the Cobalt Qube and Microtest WebZerver...
it differs in being a full-fledged Linux computer that can
be also be used for running and developing Linux applications."
- Oracle and Sybase are considering following in IBM's steps and
raising prices on their database products for Linux, according to
this Computer Reseller News article. "'The community is not
really saying that everything has to be free--they want the true
leaders in the database industry providing good solid products,'
said Janet Smith, director of product marketing and management at
- Sm@art Reseller ran
a brief note about selling open source solutions. "If your
customers don't have their hearts set on NT or Solaris, why not
build them a comparable solution based on open-source products? The
money you save by not having to shell out hundreds or thousands of
dollars in operating-system and application products can go right
into your pocket."
- Another Sm@rt Reseller article,
this one is about the increasing corporate presence in open source
development. "Just like the separation of church and state, a
careful line has to be drawn between commercial and open source. At
the same time, corporations with their hordes of patents,
programming dollars and talent eventually will have to become
trusted stewards of the open-source development process--especially
if this software model expects to thrive in new, more robust
markets, like app servers and databases."
- There is
a lengthy article in InfoWorld about Linux and desktops. It's
generally pretty accurate and positive, though with a couple of
strange notions. "Linux's virtual desktops are a descendant of
the days when scarce Unix workstations had to be shared, but they
can help individual users organize their work as well."
(Thanks to Pete Link).
- Net.opinion has put out a
"market requirements document" for Linux on the desktop. Device
drivers and simplified configuration top the list. (Thanks to
- Here are
some survey results published in Network Computing. In a
sort of "Hitchhiker's Guide" flashback, they don't tell us what the
questions were. But we know that "Linux" topped out the answers at
- Another journalist tries the "see if I can work under Linux"
approach over at
the UK version of PC Magazine. "There is one aspect of moving
to Linux that concerns me, and it's also one of the system's
greatest strengths -- the Open Source approach... Programmers need
to be paid, and I just don't believe that this approach can be
applied across the board."
- This article in the Australian "The Age" is about the
benefits of being an open source developer. The biggest of these is
access to jobs, but also... "One of the beneficial side-effects
of this style of development is reduced likelihood of losing your
code. When Russell's hard drive failed a few months ago, normally
potentially disastrous, he simply went on the Net and asked the
Linux community to send him the latest code he had uploaded a few
days earlier." (Found in LinuxWorld).
- Here is
an interview with Linus Torvalds (in Swedish) in Aftonbladet.
(Thanks to Sven Wallman).
- Intraware SubscribNews Alert
askswhether Linux is a fad; their answer is "no." "Unix had to
return to its roots to regain its dynamics [sic] qualities. Those
who question whether Open Source is a viable method for competing
against established commercial vendors can look to the history of
Unix as a possible blueprint." (Thanks to Joe Doran).
- Not too technical: here is
a personality piece in the (Raleigh) News & Observer about
the GNOME team. "Federico explains, he doesn't like
Enlightenment's structure. 'I'm not satisfied with the way [it]
works. I'm really tempted to rewrite it.'"
- Internet Week has
an article about Wine.
The author does not seem to have actually done much with Wine, the
article is mostly about what Wine could be. "The competition
between NT and Linux was close enough when you considered Linux's
financial advantages vs. Microsoft's third-party software
development advantages. If Wine lives up to expectations, Linux
will have a significant advantage in terms of usable applications
on its platform."
- The folks at
OS/2 Headquarters have revamped their
analysis of the first Halloween memo from an OS/2 point of view, and have
also added a similar
look at Halloween II.
- The U.S. government is busily trying to defeat Microsoft's "Linux
defense" in the antitrust trial according to
this Washington Post article. "'In looking at the [Linux] box,
did you notice how long the installation manual was?' [government
lawyer] Boies said to the witness. 'Would it surprise you to know
that it was 300 pages long?'"
- There's a couple of brief mentions in
this Internet Week 1999 look-ahead column. "Commercial operating
systems face pressure from the open-source movement. Linux is
- ComputerWorld ran a brief articleabout the upcoming 2.2 kernel release.
January 21, 1999