A departement moving to Linux...

Bryan Sant bryan.sant at gmail.com
Fri Feb 17 11:09:59 MST 2006

My department at work is moving to Linux (SUSE 10) on the desktop. 
All of our laptops are being upgraded, and the new ones are coming
with SUSE 10 installed.  I'd say that only about 10% of the engineers
here were running Linux on their old laptop, but everyone will be
running Linux now.

A few thoughts I've had:

1) This is the first real first-hand case of an organization adopting
and pushing desktop Linux that I've experienced.  I am very proud that
we are not adopting for
religious/political/counter-culture/I'm-a-way-31337-H4X04 purposes,
but because it is genuinely better for our needs.  I'm glad that we're
switching for "capitalistic" reasons instead of "socialistic" reasons.

2) I find myself about as resistant to a forced distro of Linux as I
am to forcing the use of Windows.  I've been running the pre-installed
SUSE 10 on my new laptop, but I don't like it that much.  I used to
like KDE -- then I ran Ubuntu with the later releases of Gnome -- now
I don't like KDE.  SUSE has the Novell Desktop (Gnome) but GTK/Gnome
is an afterthought in the SUSE world.  Anyway, I'll be rebuilding my
system with breezy soon.  All of the former Windows people seem to
really Like SUSE/KDE though, so I'm an exception.  I know that I'm
out-of-line here.  It makes perfect business sense to standardize on a
single distro/vendor to reduce support costs and increase the overall
knowledge-base with that flavor of Linux.  I support the approach... 
But I think it's great for *everyone else*...  Just not me :-)

3) I'm one of the biggest Linux proponents here, but I still find it
unsettling that we are FORCING the engineers here to run Linux even if
they don't want to.  Some (a surprising minority) would rather run
Windows because that's what they are most effective with.  Frankly I
agree that they should have a choice.  Am I a freak for not stoning
those who don't want to run Linux?

All of these guys and gals moving over are engineers (read technical),
but I was surprised at how trivial the transition was for most (and I
work with some SERIOUS Windows-weenies).  But even the biggest
Microsofties, were able to adapt in just about no time.

Anyway.  Just something to think about.  Linux is on the march.


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