Tuesday, August 09, 2005

[TechRepublic] Open source software on the desktop -- Is it right for you?

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Open source software on the desktop -- Is it right for you?

One of the arguments towards placing open source software on the desktop is that it's "comparable and compatible." Comparable means it???s largely similar; it performs the same functions. Compatible is saying simply that it works with the recognized leader in the area (Microsoft). For instance, Linux is comparable to Windows in that it???s an operating system. It???s compatible because it can read and write files to a Windows-based server (through Samba and some configuration.)?? Similarly, OpenOffice is comparable to Microsoft Office in that it offers the same basic functions. It???s compatible in that it can read and write Microsoft Office files. The rub comes in when you evaluate how comparable and compatible the solution is. From a comparable standpoint, does the solution offer the same user experience in terms of ease of use? How much will change from what???s already familiar? How about help? In this week's column, Robert Bogue explores the factors you should consider if you're thinking about switching to open source.

Other resources:

Robert Bogue, MCSE (NT4/W2K), MCSA:Security, A+, Network+, Server+, I-Net+, IT Project+, E-Biz+, CDIA+ has contributed to more than 100 book projects and numerous other publishing projects. He was honored to become a Microsoft MVP for Microsoft Commerce Server and before that Microsoft Windows Servers-Networking.

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