Why do so many Linux users hate Oracle?

In today's open source roundup: Many Linux users dislike and distrust Oracle. Plus: Munich may not be dumping Linux after all, and how to encrypt your email in Linux

Oracle has always had a rather touch and go relationship with the open source community, to say the least. The company has never been shy about doing whatever is necessary to earn a profit, even if it means alienating people in the open source community. A redditor asked why Oracle is hated by so many and got quite an earful of responses.

According to Reddit:

Hi guys. I just noticed that things have got too kind at my job's cafe, so I want to mess up with our Oracle guys a little. But I found that I can't tell precisely, point by point, why Oracle is a pile of crap which I'm sure the case.

I have general considerations like they killed Sun's awesome legacy and all, but it would be nice to have a bullet list with major screwups and historical points. Do you have some examples? I want to materialize my dark subconcious feelings!

More at Reddit
Linux users hate Oracle
Image credit: Lessons of Failure

It's funny that this topic came up on Reddit. I did my own ranting about Oracle in a column back in 2010. Like many people, I've never been a fan of that company and their behavior just brought out the anger in me. So I can understand why some people also loathe them.

One guy really let Oracle have it in a message that was at the top of the best list in the Reddit thread. Here's a very small portion of his message, click through to the Reddit thread to read his extensive list of nine points about Oracle:

Basically, Larry Ellison appears to be a money-grubbing corporate executive who...probably hangs out with the Verizon and Comcast CEOs over the weekends and shares stories of how they overcharge customers for inferior products and services.

He hates free anything, and his attitude has permeated and infected the entire company...but I have nothing solid to judge him on other than his completely selfish company which is a parasite on the software industry.

Ouch! It seems like Oracle has truly become one of the companies that many Linux users love to hate. It's probably a toss up though between Oracle and Microsoft as to which company is disliked the most in the open source world. Microsoft is probably disliked by more people, but I sense that there's more passion in the disgust felt for Oracle than for Microsoft.

Munich may not be switching back to Windows after all

You might have noticed a story about Munich dumping Linux and going back to Windows that has been all over the Internet. Now Tech Republic is reporting that that may not be true after all.

According to Tech Republic:

But is the council's move to open source about to be scrapped in favour or returning to Microsoft? No says the council, in spite of numerous reports to the contrary. Suggestions the council has decided to back away from Linux are wrong, according to council spokesman Stefan Hauf.

He said the council's recently elected mayor Dieter Reiter has instead simply commissioned a report into the future IT system for the council. "The new mayor has asked the administration to gather the facts so we can decide and make a proposal for the city council how to proceed in future," he said.

More at Tech Republic

I saw that story floating around many sites yesterday and decided to hold off commenting about it. There was just something about it that rubbed me the wrong way, and I'm glad I waited before including it in a roundup.

Frankly though, it doesn't surprise me that some sites would jump the gun and use it as an opportunity to belittle or bash Linux. We've seen this kind of thing before where a tempest in a teacup gets blown all out of proportion and suddenly Linux is doomed or whatever.

Unfortunately, even after the current wave of stories about Munich fades away, we'll see the same sort of journalistic shenanigans about Linux happen again at some point. It's just too easy and too tempting for some sites to gain traffic and ad revenue by jumping on the anti-Linux bandwagon.

How to encrypt your email in Linux

Linux.com has an excellent tutorial by the inimitable Carla Schroder that covers how to encrypt your email in Linux.

According to Linux.com:

If you've been thinking of encrypting your email, it is a rather bewildering maze to sort through thanks to the multitude of email services and mail clients. There are two levels of encryption to consider: SSL/TLS encryption protects your login and password to your mailserver. GnuPG is the standard strong Linux encryption tool, and it encrypts and authenticates your messages. It is best if you manage your own GPG encryption and not leave it up to third parties, which we will discuss in a moment.

Encrypting messages still leaves you vulnerable to traffic analysis, as message headers must be in the clear. So that necessitates yet another tool such as the Tor network for hiding your Internet footprints. Let's look at various mail services and clients, and the pitfalls and benefits therein.

More at Linux.com
How to encrypt email in Linux
Image credit: Yo Linux

If you're in need of an email application for Linux, check out Muktware's roundup of the best email clients for Linux. You might also want to check out MakeUseOf's comparative email client roundup; it covers Thunderbird, Evolution, KMail and Claws Mail. And Linux Links has a list of forty two email applications for Linux broken down into the following categories:

Clients - Graphical

Clients - Console

Clients - Web Based

Groupware

Email Server

Utilities

Security

Mail filtering

Notification

Mailing List Manager

Some of what's on the list might not be needed if you just want an email client, but it offers a range of choices that some folks might find useful.

What's your take on all this? Tell me in the comments below.

The opinions expressed by the author do not necessarily reflect the views of ITworld.

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