Novell “Unbends” The Truth About Linux

Microsoft has been continuing its campaign against Linux. Now Novell takes the first big step towards countering the MS propoganda by unveiling a specific site Unbending the Truth: Things Microsoft Hopes You Won’t Notice that builds a case for Linux while clarifying the facts stated by Microsoft.

It’s ironic that first Microsoft used selective passages from the various reports comparing Windows and Linux to its advantage only to be countered and shown in bad light by Novell quoting other selective passages from the same reports. Of course, the authors of these reports continue to say that their reports make sense only when read in full so that proper context is established. Yet, to counter a brick with a stone will make Microsoft think twice before attempting such a thing again. For now, I am expecting it to whip up a storm countering Novell’s site by finding out and quoting other facts.

Linux for an average user
I am constantly evaluating the performance of Linux with that of Windows in terms of stability and ease of use (which I think are the only two criteria that matter significantly for an average joe). My filter is when I will move to using Linux at my home PC that my father uses for his correspondence and office use.

Over the last few years Linux has certainly gained ground in its interface and when I used it recently for an extended period, I did not miss Windows at all, and there were many things (middle-click copy & paste for example) that made my life a whole lot more easy. My environment did not call for any unique software and between Sylpheed-Claws, OpenOffice, Gaim, Firefox, Liferea and gFTP, I was happy.

However, in my father’s case, he needs to use software like Adobe PageMaker which simply does not run on Linux. So, even though I’m comfortable that he will be able to handle Linux’s interface, simply because there are not enough applications that he needs is going to keep him away.

This is precisely the reason I had to shift back to Windows. I did not have a native SWF player in Linux. At work, I evaluate a lot of .SWF files that are sent to me by my team. I could drag them to a browser or even set up a script to set up a fancy workaround to have them open in a browser on double-click with the proper height & width. But it simply wasn’t practical to do from the Sylpheed-Claws interface or even otherwise very comfortable or fast enough on my poor old desktop. I shifted back to Windows only because of the standalone Flash player that runs only on Windows. I still use Firefox, Sylpheed-Claws and Gaim on Windows though I’ve started using MS Office for documents — if licensed version is available, why waste the license? 😛

So, is Linux ready for mainstream? Yes.
Are mainstream users ready for Linux? Yes.

Why stop? Lack of enough applications. To me, all other excuses don’t hold water at the moment. Over the next 4-5 years, this reason is going to disappear.

  • Both comments and trackbacks are currenlty open for this entry.
  • Trackback URI:
  • Comments RSS 2.0

Leave a Reply