• Open-source software's hidden snags

    Posted May 10, 2010 - 3:46 pm

    When CIO Daniel Chan was first prompted to use open-source software, cost savings weren't top of mind. He was mainly interested in how open source would enable his IT group at the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance to put ideas into action more quickly. In his government office, the procurement process lasts anywhere from 12 to 18 months. "It makes it impossible to do anything creative," Chan says.
  • The oddest places to find Linux

    Posted April 6, 2010 - 10:00 am

    The operating system, or its logo, are suddenly everywhere.
  • And the best Linux desktop distro of all is...

    Posted January 27, 2010 - 3:25 pm

    You don't have to be some kind of technical wizard who chants "awk, grep, sed" at a shell command prompt to run Linux these days. The only question is which Linux is right for you. This guide will help you find it.
  • Google's Chrome OS: Tomorrow's Desktop Today?

    Posted January 22, 2010 - 2:16 pm

    Is Chrome OS worth bothering with now? If you're an end-user, the answer isn't just no, it's "Heck no!" But, it offers a glimpse into a future where 90% of your computing is done on a nearly always connected netbook.
  • Businesses That Dumped Microsoft ... and Won

    Posted January 19, 2010 - 3:24 pm

    Competition has caused these seven users to trade in their Microsoft wares for alternatives from other vendors.
  • A Linux answer to Windows SBS: ClearOS

    Posted December 2, 2009 - 4:44 pm

    While Linux is most often used as a server, for some reason it's seldom seen as a small business server except by Linux experts. The Clear Foundation's ClearOS tries to open Linux up as a small business server for everyone. Oh, and did we mention it's free?
  • Unix at 40: Hanging on despite strong Linux, Windows challenges

    Posted September 29, 2009 - 12:23 pm

    The middle-aged OS is not expected to die any time soon, just slowly fade away
  • Back to school quiz for techies

    Posted August 26, 2009 - 11:17 am

    Start the new academic year with a pop quiz about the institutions where momentous technology advances were made.
  • Penguins, Lizards and Apple's X Factor: How Famous OS Logos Got Started

    Posted August 14, 2009 - 11:37 am

    Ronald McDonald and the NBC Peacock may get more TV air time, but today's operating systems have cool logos, too. Google, Apple, Microsoft and the Linux crowd crafted mascots ranging from cute lizards to circles of life. Here we look at the origins of the logos and look ahead to their future.
  • What's "Linux on the Desktop" Mean, When We Don't Know What a Desktop Is, Anymore?

    Posted July 27, 2009 - 4:19 pm

    Jim Zemlin, executive director of the Linux Foundation, explained at OSCON how hardware convergence is changing the questions, not just the answers.
  • Moblin: 6 key things to know

    Posted June 16, 2009 - 5:08 pm

    The beta of the Moblin 2.0 operating system was released earlier this month, and supports netbooks and nettops. But the target is much broader, including personal devices, television, and in-vehicle automotive computing. Here are six things you should know about Moblin.
  • Linux certifications: Hot or not?

    Posted May 13, 2009 - 9:28 am

    Employers want Linux skills, but they don't care much about certifications -- and for some, it is a red flag.
  • True believers: The biggest cults in tech

    Posted May 4, 2009 - 1:37 pm

    Spend enough time around technology and it becomes a part of you. You began to identify with it, even develop a belief system around it. You may have attended regular meetings of others similarly afflicted, and openly despised members of other groups. Before you were even aware of it, you'd joined a cult.
  • Desktop Linux: Why it may have lost its chance

    Posted April 27, 2009 - 11:47 am

    After 18 years, Linux is still struggling to gain a foothold on the business desktop. Could it be too late?
  • Is desktop Linux too fragmented to succeed?

    Posted April 27, 2009 - 11:43 am

    If one desktop Linux distribution were to gain a significant lead over all the others, it could boost mainstream Linux adoption significantly. But so far, the ideal Linux desktop remains a moving target.
  • Highly anticipated open-source releases coming in '09

    Posted March 31, 2009 - 1:32 pm

    There are plenty of remarkable open-source applications on the way this year. Quite a few projects are quietly (or not so quietly) working on major releases or significant upgrades that they aim to make available sometime during 2009. Here are 25 of the most notable.
  • Timeline: 40 years of OS milestones

    Posted March 25, 2009 - 4:09 pm

    Happy birthday, 40th birthday Unix -- you're looking great for your age. With your birth as our starting point, then, let's look at the biggest desktop OS milestones of the past 40 years.
  • Myths, gods, and titanic disasters: How servers really get their names

    Posted March 4, 2009 - 5:19 pm

    Want a server to last forever? Name it Belgarath.
  • The Windows-versus-Linux server face-off

    Posted February 25, 2009 - 10:44 am

    Gartner research published this month found the server OS market shaping up as a battle between Windows Server and Linux.
  • He said what? (an oddly informative news quiz)

    Posted February 13, 2009 - 2:45 pm

    Does free software uniquely suit Cuba's politics? Is Silverlight the very picture of health? Who Twittered a secret trip to Iraq? Who won't be hacking OS X for prize money this year? Think you know? Test your knowledge in this week's quiz.
  • Mark Shuttleworth's Five Lessons on Organizational Change

    Posted February 2, 2009 - 10:35 am

    Mark Shuttleworth is not your average IT manager. A few weeks ago, he posted a question on an Ubuntu list. Not an order. Not a policy decision. A question: "Should we think about...?" he asked. Collaboration, community and teamwork are part of his personal style. Here are the lessons he's learned about what it takes to get people to change.
  • Don't Fear the Penguin: A Newbie's Guide to Linux

    Posted January 27, 2009 - 11:12 pm

  • Replacing high-end Unix with enterprise Linux? Not so fast.

    Posted November 25, 2008 - 11:17 am

    Migrating from high-end Unix-based systems to commodity x86/Linux platforms has been a popular idea for the last few years, at least in theory. But it turns out that not everyone thinks going full-on with Linux is the best solution -- at least not yet.
  • Is Sun Solaris on its deathbed?

    Posted September 24, 2008 - 3:09 pm

    Linux is enjoying growth, with a contingent of devotees too large to be called a cult following at this point. Solaris, meanwhile, has thrived as a longstanding, primary Unix platform geared to enterprises. But with Linux the object of all the buzz in the industry, can Sun's rival Solaris Unix OS hang on, or is it destined to be displaced by Linux altogether?
  • Kernel space: udev rules, but whose?

    Posted August 20, 2008 - 8:33 am

    Once upon a time, a Linux distribution would be installed with a /dev directory fully populated with device files. Most of them represented hardware which would never be present on the installed system, but they needed to be there just in case. Toward the end of this era, it was not uncommon to find systems with around 20,000 special files in /dev, and the number continued to grow. This scheme was unwieldy at best, and the growing number of hotpluggable devices (and devices in general) threatened to make the whole structure collapse under its own weight. Something, clearly, needed to be done.
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