Mac OSX, Linux, Windows, and the Enterprise

Windows 7 is coming out. Linux has a fwe new offerings including Ubuntu 9.04, Red Hat, and Suse. Mac has Snow Leopard due out soon. Many choices, yet some work well in the enterprise, and some don’t. Why not, and how can some of these become better for the enterprise? Lets take a look.

Mac’s are probably the worst offender for not playing nice in the enterprise, especially for a SBS office. Mac’s would be a perfect fit for SBS if the software that most SBS offices use was made for Mac. Costs of Mac’s is also prohibitive for an SBS environment, not to mention the more difficult time of setup and connectivity for Mac’s to an SBS server. Mac’s just work, but that is really only true in a consumer environment. while Mac’s are great for video and audio work, Linux and Windows have gotten better at being able to handle this stuff, and could eventually chip away at Mac’s stronghold here.

Linux in the enterprise is a great hing, but it tends to be back end mostly. Yes the desktop is becoming more and more user friendly, but unfortunately one of the biggest barriers in the Linux Community. They tend to look down at non-technical people, and when someone is starting to learn, there is a lot of snark that gets received that can turn people off to Linux. Compatibility with Windows programs has gotten much better, and there is a lot of software available for Linux. Major Software vendors still are not producing their software en mass for it, but with adoption of Linux as a desktop environment, it would happen much easier than with Mac’s due to the open source nature of Linux. The other problem with Linux is the multiple versions out there and the fact that there is tweaking at times needed for each version.

Windows is the de facto champion in the enterprise. The whole small business offering, the fact that they make both front and back end with single management tools, and that most people are familiar with the OS will keep Windows in this position for a while still. Unless a killer app comes out for Linux or Mac, Windows only has to worry about the long term and not the short term. Can the others chip away at Windows domination of the enterprise? Yes, but to overtake Windows is decades still to come without a killer, must have app that is only available on Mac or Linux.

Random Thoughts

Just some musings and thoughts for the day today.

1) Registry cleaning is needed, and I”m testing a bunch of the different cleaners right now, but what do you like to use to clean your registry.

2) Terminal Server, is it really the be all end all for any small business when Office licensing alone can cost more than the server itself? And will this be the area that Open Office starts to shine in?

3) SBS 2008, when do you think the best time to start to deploy it to clients is? I know I”m trying to do it with fresh networks, but what about migration from prior versions on existing networks, where you need to have minimal downtime.

4) Online groups and fourms, what do you use for your tech forums? Myself I don’t really use any one particular one, but I do love Experts Exchange jsut for the wealth of knowledge there.

Just some thoughts to be discussed. Once things settle back down in the office, I’ll get back to doing reviews of Server 2008 and SBS 2008 (although I am still figuring out how we can get it on its own subnet around the office so I can run the wizards and go through it properly).

Be Careful what you wish for…

I tend to read a number of blogs, especially tech ones, and some I love to read. The SBS Diva is one of my favorites. This MVP has some great insights on the Microsoft Small Business platform, and usually is fun to read. Of course there are moments which make me go Hmmmm… when reading her posts.

She made a very elequent post about change as it relates to SBS 2008 compared to SBS 2003, and how we have to sometimes bite the bullet. Yes, a lot of the changes in SBS 2008 we asked for. The Vista interface, Needing to run everything in elevated mode, and some other items like that we did not ask for.

Yes change happens, but do we not still have a right to complain about what we don’t like? I would say we do, cause without those gripes, how would the next version become any better?

Also, if you read the post, make note of her thoughts on Microsoft’s backup system. Personally, I will not use it outside of maybe a test environment, mostly because I’ve found in the past that it never quite works as easy as it should. For me it is more along the lines of having been burned by Microsoft Backup one too many times.

Anywho, I do recommend checking her blog out, as she updates it frequently, and it has a lot of good information. Plus, if you can get into commenting on it, it can create some really good discussions.