Monday, March 10, 2008

XP, Vista, Vienna, or Linux?

Hm I think that title would get the attention of the audience I would want to address in this post. 
Today I was looking up some information about what is going on with Windows Vista, and its alleged new name as ME II, as well as the upcoming Vienna which is already in development. 
That was all fine to me, I have my opinions about this, however, this post is not about that. it is about a comment that I saw on one of the posts that I had seen regarding Vista and Vienna (Can't remember which it was), and that comment was a perfect representation about everything I hate about ignorant people. I will attempt to remember what the comment said, just so you have an idea what I'm talking about. 
The context:
Some people were debating whether Vista is as bad as ME, and whether Microsoft should come up with a new OS, or fix the current one, etc ... 
The comment:
ok .. sort of quoted ... 
"it's all crap, Vista, Vienna, XP, ME...., move to Linux"
Ok , so that is very mature. (NOT). I do see the same behavior from Mac users, but not nearly as much as I see it from Linux users. What is up with that people? Personally, I have nothing against Linux. In fact, I am a Redhat Certified Engineer, and I think it's an amazing platform which serves its purposes. 
That being said, most of my work revolves around Windows platform, and I love working with that too. Does it have problems? sure it does! what platform doesn't? is it as secure as Linux? perhaps, with some careful planning and thinking, you can possibly secure it, maybe not as much as, for instance FreeBSD, but fairly good. On the downside, for those who defend Linux with their lives: I don't care how good of a platform Linux is, I still need 3 times as long to deploy anything in production on this platform if I'm not extremely proficient in it. There is community support, but that isn't quite enough for anything in production. (and yes, i am aware that there is a RHEL release with enterprise support). The point is, however, with all its faults Windows has its advantages, and whether you like it or not, it is the major operating platform anywhere. 
So... Linux fanatics, there's nothing wrong with your opinion, but please know that, bashing a Windows OS just because you think Linux is the greatest, is the most immature thing you can do. By the way, the same goes for any particular platform bashing, not necessarily just Windows. The concept, though, is what I'm addressing:
Keep your ignorance to yourself when you have nothing to say but throwing in your 2 cents about how the OS you use is the best in the world. 
I digress...


Sayyan said...

Interesting post, however the main crux of your argument wasn't clarified. "I still need 3 times as long to deploy anything in production on this platform if I'm not extremely proficient in it."

Why does it take you three times as long to deploy anything? (I'm assuming you mean the initial machines, software and udpates?)

I used Windows for many years after starting out on BBC's and RISC; however from my very first experiences with Linux, I found it a lot quicker to operate and deploy than a Windows machine. Especially with distributions such as Ubuntu and openSUSE, I've so far had a lot more positive experiences setting up networks with those, than with Windows.

Babylon said...

Thanks for your comment Sayyan. Since you asked, I will give you an example, which I dealt with just recently.

At work, (a school district), I have a few servers on each school, which I decided to virtualize. for the sake of cost, as I was buying servers with 8Gb of RAM in them, I figured it may be cheaper to install VMWare for the host OS on Fedora Core, and save us some additional $300 licensing fee.

Well here's what I had to deal with:
1- Had to install a new Kernel (PAE) in order to accomodate my 8Gb of RAM
2- Had to install god knows how many devel libraries so that VMWare can build its mui.
3- Once VMWare was installed, the bigger nightmare came in to play, install Dell Open Manage software to monitor the hardware on the server. being not officially supported by Dell, everything had to be compiled from scratch... welcome dependency hell...

Now, put yourself in my shoes... I'm deploying these servers, and I'm the only one that is semi proficient with Linux. Now, my instruction sheet to my colleagues will be about 5 miles long, if I need to give them a step by step on rebuilding that server, which of course, we know never happens, because everytime there's a different quirk in it that you have to individually deal with.

Let's look at windows:
Installed the OS (2003 Enterprise, which accommodates my 8 Gb of RAM)
Installed Updates, and OpenManage right out of the box.
Installed VMWare, and I was up and running.

In some cases, though, I do agree with you completely. I would much rather use, for instance, apache over IIS, and MySQL over MS SQL, as they are inherently more secure, and to use them out of the box, is very possible, unless you are doing some funky stuff with mods and whatnot.

I hope my point got a bit clearer. As I said, I'm not against Linux... I just think that it has its place, and I was mostly addressing the "extremists" who get stuck with any particular OS without keeping an open mind.