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Category Archives: Microsoft

Why Do I Need 4GBs of Ram?

I have noticed that most new computers come standard with 2-4GBs or ram; every time I look at a computer with 4GBs of ram I have to ask myself why does the average users need 4GB of ram? They don’t. Vista(32-bit), which comes with many of these computers,Can’t even use 4GBs of ram, but it will try to make you think it can. 32-bit Linux also has this problem, as it is actually a hardware problem, but Linux has a hack that will actually allow you to use that ram. Of course, if you really need 4GBs of ram why are you using a 32-bit processor?

now on to my point. I own 3 computers all of which have less than 1GB of ram. My ibook(Mac os 10.4) and my main pc (Fedora 8 ) both have 768MB of ram. Sure I would like to have 1GB or 1.5GBs of ram sometimes but most of the time 768 is enough.I also have an old dell that I got for $25 that only has 256MBs, so I almost never use it (and I’m too cheap to buy more ram for it so its going to stay that way). Why am I mostly happy with 768MBs of ram when the average person seems to have to have 2GBs at a minimum? There may be many answers to this. The main one being that I use Linux and Mac OS and they use Windows; another top contender is that the average person doesn’t know all that much about computers and have just been told that they need 2-4GBs of ram. The need for several GBs of ram(and a high end graphics card) for an OS to simply run smoothly and as designed shows some serious (possibly intentional) design flaws.

I think I’ll save my money and keep using my outdated, malfunctioning(it has broken hardware) pc and Linux.

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Posted by on January 20, 2008 in Microsoft, opinion

 

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Windows 7 Sounds like it is going to Suck Hard

Update: Dec 23, 2008 Most of my prodictions in this post have proven to be wrong. I have used a beta (or was it alpha?) of windows 7 (don’t ask me for a copy) and I can say it is a lot like vista, but with many improvements. I haven’t used vista much (for personal use anyway) since the beta so I’m probably not the best person to ask regarding the improvements windows 7 has made, but I have told by windows fanboys that they are rather significant. Needless to say windows 7 is not a thin client like I predicted in this post (thankfuly), however they are going to be doing something with cloud networking but I no idea what it is (I don’t know if it is really known/understood what they are doing). If you have any information or input about the reality of windows 7 please leave a comment.

Bill gates on windows 7 ” That means that right now when you move from one PC to another, you’ve got to install apps on each one, do upgrades on each one. Moving information between them is very painful. We can use Live Services to know what you’re interested in. So even if you drop by a [public] kiosk or somebody else’s PC, we can bring down your home page, your files, your fonts, your favourites and those things. So that’s kind of the user-centric thing that Live Services can enable. [Also,] in Vista, things got a lot better with [digital] ink and speech, but by the next release there will be a much bigger bet. Students won’t need textbooks; they can just use these tablet devices. Parallel computing is pretty important for the next release. We’ll make it so that a lot of the high-level graphics will be just built into the operating system. So we’ve got a pretty good outline.” (from Wikipedia)

What that means is that windows 7 is going to be a thin client which is just used to connect to a copy of windows server over prised edition that isn’t any better than the previous edition but cost a lot more because we like to rip you off edition (or what ever the version is when windows 7 comes out). You will have to pay a monthly fee to access this server, which is the entire reason they are doing it like that in the first place, and it will be very sloooooow and unreliable. Oh and lets not forget that they will have complete access to your unencrypted files, because they would never offer to encrypt them for you, but don’t worry they won’t look at them.

ReactOS is starting to smell really good right about now… Though their homepage doesn’t reflect it if you look over at SourceForge you will see that they have just pushed out Build Environment 1.0!

 
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Posted by on December 9, 2007 in Microsoft, opinion

 

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Microsoft will Die, part 2

Last time I talked about why I think Microsoft is going to die and what I think they should do to save themselves. I got the response that I expected to get, disagreement, but that is ok because I like to argue.

Today I would like to talk about who could kill Microsoft and how they could do it. I want this to be from a neutral point of view from the part 1, meaning that I don’t care if it is likely for Microsoft to die I just want to talk about who could kill them if they really were going to die. What I mean by that is if Microsoft dies who is going to be the one to edge them out? Oh and this one isn’t a foss vs Microsoft thing like the last one.

Community driven linux distros are really good but they aren’t going to take on Microsoft anytime soon because they don’t have the organization, or resources. People want to get their software from a company that they can go to if they have problems. Sure they can go to a third party to get tech support but most people won’t want to mess with that because lets face it people are lazy and don’t care if the third party would be better or not.

I want to break this down to four(4) questions:
1. Who could defeat Microsoft In the home pc/workstation market?
2. How will they do it?
3. Who could defeat Microsoft in the Server market?
4. How will they do it?

1.
There is a pretty big list of people that could compete with Microsoft for the Home pc/workstation market: Apple, Sun, Novel, Red Hat, and Canonical. I previously Talked about my feelings towards Solaris. So I think I can safely say that as long as sun doesn’t drastically change directions with solaris you will not find a Solaris box in every home until everyone becomes Masochistic computer geeks. However, Sun can not be counted out of the Workstation business because as long as there is an in house IT presence willing to work with Solaris it will have a place in the work environment. I could be completely wrong and Solaris is the best thing since sliced awesome. And yes I know I’m doing them out of order.

As you may know if you’ve ever read the blog, my main computer is a mac running Mac OS 10.4. I like Mac OS because it makes some things easy, easy generally means less options though. Oh, and I also know that using a Mac makes me a hypocrite, but that is a story for another time. The average user will have no problem using a Mac as long as they are willing to learn that it is just different from windows and not just wrong because it isn’t what they are used to. Apple is pretty self explanatory so I’m not going to go on any further about them, except to say that Apple isn’t that strong in the workstation area.

Novel is a lot like Sun except that their product is more user friendly. Novel seems to be going more for the workstation sales more than anything else, which makes sense. I personally don’t like Suse that much but that isn’t to say it isn’t a great piece of software. With Novel’s stupid patent agreement thing with Microsoft they may well end up being the go to guys for businesses that fall for Microsoft’s saber rattling. I assume that Novel also offers some kind of tech support for Suse so that will bring in people that don’t care about the patent deal as well.

The thing that makes these next two different form the previous three is that they are community driven, with backing from a corporation. RHEL isn’t Community driven but fedora is so actually Red Hat fits into both, kinda. For Workstations RHEL is the best option from Red Hat if you want them to support it, but in the Home PC market RHEL is not really worth it because you can’t buy just a single license, or at least I don’t think you can, so Fedora is your best option. Red Hat doesn’t sell tech support for Fedora as far as I know but if they wanted to market it to home users in an attempt to make money they probably would offer it. If your wondering how they could make money off fedora hang on just a little bit because I’m going to explain that in answering question two.

Canonical is probably the best choice of all of these for a non-technical home user. I haven’t used the newest version of Ubuntu (Gusty Gibbon) so I can’t comment of its usability but I can comment of older versions so I will. Historically Ubuntu has been more user friendly than other distros (this is actually very arguable) but I don’t think that if I gave me dad a copy of Ubuntu he would be able to use it very well. Maybe Ubuntu has become the most user friendly (idiot friendly) OS known to man since last I used it, but I doubt it. So anyway, Canonical is in the best position of all the companies that I have mentioned to take over in the home user market because they already have a presence with Dell. If dell offered pcs that were significantly cheaper due to Ubuntu in a way that made it just as easy for your average Joe to get them as it is to get a windows box from Dell I think a lot more people would go for the machines running Ubuntu.

2. How will they do it? If I were put in charge of one of these companies and asked to try and gain market in the Home the first thing I would do is to through it in a box and ask Walmart, Best Buy, Circuit City, and who ever else I could find to sell my stuff. I would sell it as cheaply as possible and since all of the Companies I mentioned are selling Free Software (excluding apple) as cheaply as possible means free. Of course, I would charge something for the box but I wouldn’t actually charge for the OS. So I would charge a few bucks to compensate the money I spent to make the physical box itself (paper, cd, ink, shipping) and I would charge a fee for tech support. As long as the price is lower than windows and you can make money off of tech support this should work. The major advantage this has over windows is that tech support is not included when you buy windows, If you want tech support from Microsoft it will cost you on a per call basis. Like I said before people like tech support, but they like “free” tech support better.

The next thing I would do is try to get an already established hardware vendor to sell my product. I’ve already discussed why I would do that so I’m not going to do it again.

3. The list of contenders in the server market is about the same as the home pc market. you have, Sun, IBM, Novel, Apple, Red Hat, and Canonical. Microsoft is not as strong in the server business as they are in the home/workstation business so it wouldn’t really take much to beat them. The only place where I can think of windows servers being dominant is file servers or windows domain for a businesses and organizations that don’t know better. Because I feel that a lot of this is obvious and this is starting to get long and I don’t want to split it into another post I’m only going to talk about the exceptional companies.

I would not use Ubuntu as a server for any purpose at all. Ubuntu isn’t designed to be a server it is designed to be human friendly which is a direct con tradition of what a server is. Ubuntu is designed for people that don’t know what they are doing and not for people that want to do it themselves or do it right. Now I’ve never used Ubuntu sever but if it is anything like the normal version what I have said is true. If you want a Linux server you need a Linux for geeks not for human beings.

4. How will they do it? simple Charge less. If Microsoft is charging a $10000 per year site license fee for a host to run Windows give them them your OS with hardware included for the same price in a one time deal. Or you could just show them your uptimes ;).

I did end up talking a lot about free software but that is just because there is very little non-free software out there that isn’t Unix. Unix is great but is it becoming less important as business move away from it towards Gnu/Linux. On top of that the one Unixen I did mention is free; the world seems to be moving towards free software so that is what I had to discuss.

If I forgot anything let me know.

 
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Posted by on October 25, 2007 in Microsoft, opinion

 

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Microsoft Will Die in the next 10 Years

I’m sure some people reading this are going to think that I’m either completely insane or I’m just stupid, but I tell you I am not my good sir. Okay so maybe I am a little insane.

Microsoft has one main source of income, licenses; these licenses are of two kinds OEMs and corporate site licenses. With out even one of those two sources of income Microsoft will be crippled, some what. I don’t expect huge numbers of corporations and organizations to move away from windows anytime soon so Microsoft is fairly safe on that front, however, With Dell already shipping PCs with Ubuntu and all the rumors of other vendors looking into Gnu/linux Microsoft may face a problem.

All it would take is for one major vendor (Dell?) to get pissed off at Microsoft and switch completely to Gnu/Linux, BSD, etc. If just one would make the switch it could cause a domino affect with the other vendors. I don’t think this is as far fetched as it might sound; vendors have to pay Microsoft, not that much though, which cuts into how much money they make. So from a purely it makes sense for these vendors to dumb Microsoft, however, I don’t see that happening. What I think is more likely is that Microsoft will attack one of these companies for doing something that is completely within their rights, such as selling linux, and the company will respond by giving Microsoft the figure; It won’t be that simple but you get the idea.

now to be realistic…

Gnu/Linux is not ready for the mainstream; Ubuntu might be more user friendly(not really) than some of the other distros it isn’t idiot friendly. My brother, who is an IT professional tried out Ubuntu about a year ago and every time he would have a problem he would ask me what to do; normally he had simple problems that could be solved by just installing something, however, after I would tell him what to install he would ask how to install it. I could never get him to understand that he didn’t have to download the program from the projects website because he was used to the way it worked in windows.

Also Microsoft isn’t really going to die they are just going to lose market share. Though after some time they could eventually die completely or just exit the computer market.

Microsoft will not make as much money doing FOSS but they can stay alive. They can sell their product and still be Open but people won’t pay as much for it so they would have to look into offering services, much like Red Hat or Oracle does. Novell seems to be doing just fine in the FOSS market.

What Microsoft can do to save themselves
One of my friends asked me a while back what I would do if I was could take control of Microsoft, my first response was kill windows and go to Gnu/Linux! I’ve given it some more thought sense then and changed my mind. Here is a step by step list I came up with of things Microsoft should do to not get killed by FLOSS.

1. Join them. FLOSS is taking over and the best thing for Microsoft to do to ensure their market share for the future is to join the crowd.
2. Play nice with others. Microsoft needs to release the documentation for their products ( the full documentation), and get ride of their modified standards, such as Microsoft java.
3. Fix security holes! the tech community is more likely to use windows if it isn’t buggy and full of holes.
4. integrate a package manager (that isn’t windows update). This is just obvious, I think.
5. Open up all of the code. This kind of goes with #1 and #2 and #3…

If you have anything to say please leave a commit, but be nice :(.

 
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Posted by on September 18, 2007 in foss, Microsoft, opinion