Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

M$ ponders how to annihilate Linux

Filed under
Linux
Microsoft

THE THEME OF THE SALES keynotes at the MS WWPC was on how to sell: sell against Linux and sell to small businesses (SB).

The small business side had a new announcement, the Linux side was really light on ideas. There was also the usual sales cheerleading, but last time I talked about it, it was so sugary, it put three diabetic readers into a coma, about par for the course at a marketing conference.

Lets start with the good: the SB sector, something that has been largely ignored by larger vendors. There may be more money per account in a Fortune 500 business, but there are many more SB accounts. Part of the push today was to tap those accounts.

To do so, MS announced the Small Business Specialist, which is about what it sounds like. You need to get some training for the market, pass two technical tests and, from what I gathered at the keynote, you get a shirt proclaiming the achievement. Well, maybe you don't get a shirt, but they do exist. Meanwhile, the world gets people aimed at an underserved niche.

They also announced a bunch of mid-market initiatives, the one that stuck out is a new licensing model for the sector. While that is nothing new, they threw out the previous three models and replaced them with a single one called Open Value. You can spread payments over three years and, they said, there is a perpetual as well as rent-to-not-own model. The really great thing is they cut the contract down from 35 pages to five. And said they are vastly decreasing the time it takes to order the software.

One thing they kept talking about was reducing cost, and reducing the initial cost. Maybe I am reading to much into it, but I distinctly heard Orlando Ayala say, "We are too expensive," several times. With that, they went into a talk about MS financing, and from now to the end of September, they will finance you for 101%, IE you finance through MS and you get a 1% kickback.

This all brings us to value, and something I didn't know or, at least, didn't realize. When talking about Linux, Kevin Johnson kept referring to the Get The Facts web site. They kept talking about how using the site and getting people, "engaged around Get The Facts". This would not bother me if they didn't keep referring to several thoroughly debunked, and mostly MS-funded studies. I was hoping for a real reason not to go for Linux, but nothing factual was presented, just spin. Color me stupid for expecting reality, but I didn't know how they used that site.

They did present a few interesting numbers though. First is a couple of winback case studies, with National Enterprise Systems and Independence Air named as now ex-Linux users. They also quoted some IDC numbers about shipments of Linux on x86 hardware, they showed MS at about 65% of the market in 2000 moving to about 75% in 2004. At the same time Linux went from about 10 to 15%. The take-home message was that partners can win against Linux, and it's growth is not at MS's expense. Without fine print, I can't go any deeper than that, but I am sure someone will it that after reading this.

Overall, for a pump-up, the resellers conference it was well done. The right things were said at the right times, and the sticky issues were glossed over. The only thing lacking was a coherent anti-Linux strategy. Maybe next year. µ

Source.

More in Tux Machines

35 Open Source Tools for the Internet of Things

In a nutshell, IoT is about using smart devices to collect data that is transmitted via the Internet to other devices. It's closely related to machine-to-machine (M2M) technology. While the concept had been around for some time, the term "Internet of Things" was first used in 1999 by Kevin Ashton, who was a Procter & Gamble employee at the time. Read more

IoT tinkerers get new Linux hub & open platforms

Cloud Media, the maker of entertainment box Popcorn Hour, launched a project on Kickstarter, Inc. that will add to the growing number of smart hubs for people to connect and control smart devices. Called the STACK Box, it features a Cavium ARM11 core processor, 256MB DDR3 RAM, 512MB flash, SD slot, 802.11n WiFi, Bluetooth LE 4.0, Z-Wave, standard 10/100 Ethernet port, optional X10 wired communication, 5 USB 2.0 ports, RS-232 port, 2 optocoupler I/O, Xbee Bus, Raspberry Pi-compatible 26-pin bus and runs Linus Kernel 3.10. IT also features optional wireless communications for Dust Networks and Insteon with RF433/315, EnOcean, ZigBee, XBee, DCLink, RFID, IR coming soon. Read more

Citrix and Google partner to bring native enterprise features to Chromebooks

Chromebooks are making inroads into the education sector, and a push is coming for the enterprise with new native Chrome capabilities from Citrix. Google and Citrix have announced Citrix Receiver for Chrome, a native app for the Chromebook which has direct access to the system resources, including printing, audio, and video. To provide the security needed for the enterprise, the new Citrix app assigns a unique Receiver ID to each device for monitoring, seamless Clipboard integration across remote and local applications, end user experience monitoring with HDX Insight, and direct SSL connections. Read more

Is Open Source an Open Invitation to Hack Webmail Encryption?

While the open source approach to software development has proven its value over and over again, the idea of opening up the code for security features to anyone with eyeballs still creates anxiety in some circles. Such worries are ill-founded, though. One concern about opening up security code to anyone is that anyone will include the NSA, which has a habit of discovering vulnerabilities and sitting on them so it can exploit them at a later time. Such discoveries shouldn't be a cause of concern, argued Phil Zimmermann, creator of PGP, the encryption scheme Yahoo and Google will be using for their webmail. Read more