Bonum Certa Men Certa

Eating Suzie's Lunch

Steve Ballmer rides SUSENo matter how you pronounce it, SUSE is still lagging

Microsoft, which has failed to halt the growth of GNU/Linux, is saddened by the fact that there is no point of failure -- so to speak -- for its gruesome executives to crush. There is no single company that Microsoft can attack to collapse this thing which we know as "Free software". It tried everything, even "The Slog". At the moment, Microsoft wants to wrap the entire world with FOSS-hostile laws and also imprison all GNU/Linux users (desktops and servers in particular) inside some sort of a corporate cage that it can later destroy. At the moment, that cage happens to be SUSE Linux and Microsoft offers its customers some coupons (choice) between Microsoft Windows and Microsoft Linux (Ballnux). It's supposed to injure leading distributions like Red Hat, Mandriva and Ubuntu; it hardly affects existing Windows deployments that Microsoft is unwilling to let be replaced.



Given that Microsoft is paid money for SLED and SLES (which are being morphed to become more Windows-esque), this offer of 'choice' from Microsoft is what Bruce Perens once called a "Clever Fraud".

Microsoft's new "Software Choice" campaign is all for your right to choose... as long as you choose Microsoft. It's too bad that Intel and the U.S. Government couldn't see through the rhetoric.

Microsoft is worried about Peruvian Congressman Edgar Villanueva's proposal for his nation's government agencies to standardize on Free Software for their own internal use. But Villanueva makes an important point: everybody has to deal with the government. If a government uses proprietary software, its citizens will probably have to use the same software to communicate with it. A government web site that only supports Internet Explorer would lock citizens into that Microsoft product. In contrast, a government site using open standards and avoiding patented software would allow citizens to choose between many different kinds of software to access the site.


In reality, fortunately enough, Microsoft's attempts to congregate all users of GNU/Linux under a single roof it can subsequently crush have so far failed. Here is another new example of a user who, rather than move into the pen, is moving away from it.

In December 2005 after looking around for a Linux distribution, SUSE 10.0 seemed a good choice. SUSE, which was later renamed openSUSE, remains a good Linux distribution. At that time there were a few mentions of a newer distribution called Ubuntu. People using Ubuntu seemed to be quite enthusiastic about it. It seemed interesting, but early attempts to install it on my hardware were futile.

The problem that I ran into with several versions of openSUSE was the reliability of the wireless connection on my laptop. Version 10.0 was good. 10.1 not so much. 10.2 was perfect, and 10.3 was problematic. Not having reliable wireless connections was pretty much a deal breaker for me. I looked for solutions, and I had vanilla Intel PRO wireless hardware. When it became clear that 10.3 was going to be a problem, I looked again long and hard at Ubuntu.


A few hours ago, Jose_X wrote the following comment, which sums it up nicely: "This is no loss to me because there are so many other distros and many more to get developed. Contribute to distros you want to succeed and be tops rather than to those you don't. Using is contributing. We have choice in Linuxland. Promote distro foundations that don't give monopolies extra gain or traction."

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