11.22.06

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Yet Another SuSE-Ubuntu Faceoff

Posted in GNOME, OpenSUSE, Ubuntu at 9:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

A story from Tectonic (South African tech) shows us that Ubuntu trumps SUSE, even based on purely ‘political’ considerations. Unless Novell retracts its deal with the devil, I am afraid that we are likely to find more stories as such.

SLED 10 is good looking, well designed and very usable. Novell has added some excellent features that make the Gnome desktop just a little bit more friendly to use. Surprisingly, the extra overhead didn’t put too much strain on my lower-end IBM Thinkpad notebook.

The obvious question to ask, however, is how the Novell-Microsoft deal will affect SuSE’s market share, both among the free software community and within the corporate sector.

If I was to hazard a guess I would say that we’ll see significant drop off in the use of SuSE by the free software community. In large part because of the relationship with Microsoft but also because something like Ubuntu is every bit as good a desktop for most users as is SuSE and it has less of the baggage SuSE now has.

On the corporate front it will take time for the deal to play itself out but Novell provides a compelling desktop Linux option in SLED 10 and perhaps together with the assurance of not being sued by Microsoft might well be a good corporate desktop replacement.

For myself, I am sticking with Ubuntu for now.

As for myself, I still run Opensuse at home and at work. I am waiting to see how things develop before I impulsively replace Opensuse with Debian or Fedora Core (just renamed “Fedora”). If it’s not broken, don’t ‘fix’ it, right? Technically, Opensuse is not broken. And yes, the licensing route to the future seems broken already. A couple of weeks ago I noticed the following when doing a whois.net lookup.


Domain Name: FREESUSE.COM
Registrar: BELGIUMDOMAINS, LLC
Whois Server: whois.belgiumdomains.com
Referral URL: http://www.belgiumdomains.com
Name Server: NS-3.WEBSERVERGATOR.COM
Name Server: NS-2.WEBSERVERGATOR.COM
Name Server: NS-1.WEBSERVERGATOR.COM
Status: ACTIVE
EPP Status: ok
Updated Date: 01-Nov-2006
Creation Date: 01-Nov-2006
Expiration Date: 01-Nov-2007

A fork to freedom? Some existing SUSE users would hope so. A willing army of developers and testers may already be prepared to embark on such a project. The endeavour involves maintenance of packages that will evolve elsewhere, in companies that foster innovation and serve as incubators.

Love SuSE/SUSE. Blame Novell.

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14 Comments

  1. Brandon said,

    November 23, 2006 at 12:57 am

    Gravatar

    It’s not Microsoft that will kill Novell. It’s the OSS community that is going to kill Novell.

  2. Miguel Benevides said,

    November 23, 2006 at 1:46 am

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    hmmm… i still think Novell committed suicide.

  3. David Sterry said,

    November 23, 2006 at 1:55 am

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    The MS/Novell deal isn’t all that bad for Novell. Their customers can see they’re trying to do something good in increasing interoperability. It’s highly unlikely that MS will benefit politically from anything they do with Linux. It’ll all just be seen as spreading FUD or trying to corrupt the ideals of FOSS.

  4. Azrael Nightwalker said,

    November 23, 2006 at 4:27 am

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    FLOSS community fighting with itself – thats what Microsoft wants. Don’t let them push you into brother-killing fight.

  5. Bondings said,

    November 23, 2006 at 4:29 am

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    Belgiumdomains is a bulk domain squatting company. They only register domains to make money – a lot of it.

    http://forums.dnsstuff.com/tool/post/dnsstuff/vpost?id=943423

  6. Philluminati said,

    November 23, 2006 at 4:58 am

    Gravatar

    MS aren’t as big as Sun Microsystems and IBM. They ain’t even close.

    Linux has absolutely nothing to worry about. MS are just scaring money out of linux companies. It’s effectively throwing your money away for piece of mind. Nothings going to happen.

    I’d bet money this all fizzles out without torvalds declaring a call of arms.

  7. Markus Sorensson said,

    November 23, 2006 at 8:57 am

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    This article is bull… as this site is too… your domains says boycottnovell but you are still running opensuse in your house and at work? WTF?

  8. RMXZ said,

    November 23, 2006 at 9:06 am

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    Brandon – Novell isn’t dying – their just changing business models back to a closed source comany based on proprietary IP – both theirs and that licensed from others (Micrsoft).

    Whether they can do this with Linux & GPL tricks is still unknown (seems they’re OK with GPLv2, but GPLv3 might cause them difficulties) — so I won’t be shocked to see Novell move to Unix instead.

    But bottom line is they’re far from dead; and they think they found a viable business in the Microsoft-interoperability space. Heck, from this one contract alone they made almost as much as their Linux business makes in a year.

    So no, Brandon, the OSS community didn’t kill Novell – Novell just decided they care more about Microsoft than the OSS community and the community is wishing them the best of luck in pleasing their new master.

  9. Sunny said,

    November 23, 2006 at 9:54 am

    Gravatar

    Brandon,
    Technically when you jump from the roof of a building – it’s the pavement that kills you, not your act, but still …

  10. pcbsduser aka linuxuser said,

    November 23, 2006 at 10:05 am

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    im off the suse bandwagon and on to pcbsd it does everything i need to do !! and acording to IBM its rock solid i like it a lot.

  11. linux fan said,

    November 25, 2006 at 2:54 pm

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    basically from now on whenever i hear the words ‘novell’ or ‘suse’ i am going to think stupid. lets just totally forget novell at all and pretty much pretend it doesnt exist. if someone asks what an expirienced linux user like me thinks of suse i am going to say “whats suse?, just use a distro like ubuntu”

  12. dude said,

    November 25, 2006 at 9:39 pm

    Gravatar

    Novell did wrong.Deal with MS is worst move you can do in FOSS world.Everyone can make errors but sometimes you have to pay for your errors.So, Novell probably did a pretty stupid move and will lose from it a lots.

  13. guy said,

    November 26, 2006 at 5:40 am

    Gravatar

    “MS aren’t as big as Sun Microsystems and IBM. They ain’t even close.”

    Are you kidding us, guy? Or you really think that? MS surpassed Ibm back in 1999…..

  14. Abnehmen Diät schnell said,

    October 1, 2007 at 11:52 am

    Gravatar

    Interesting to read this article. I really enjoyed reading all of your posts. It’s interesting to get observations from someone else’s point of view.

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