As a geek who became a magazine publisher, it feels strange to write what sounds like a Business and Finance column. I haven't changed, but the Linux community certainly has. If you don't believe this, ask around and see how many geeks you know who bought Andover, Cobalt, Corel, Red Hat or VA Linux stock.
This year has already started out with a bang for the Linux community. First, there is a rumor that the reason Bill Gates stepped down as CEO of Microsoft to become its Chief Software Architect is Linux-related. Okay, maybe “rumor” is too strong a word, but the number-two reason according to Salon Magazine is that Bill needed more time to learn Linux.
While I don't believe this is 100% true, things have changed for Microsoft. Between the Department of Justice and Linux on the OS level, Microsoft has been forced into a competitive arena. In the applications arena, Sun's purchase of StarOffice and making it freely available offers a difficult-to-match price point. I expect Microsoft will still have a lot of customers, but it is nice to see them having to work harder to attract new users.
The influx of capital into the Linux market is amazing: about $100 million between Turbo Linux, SuSE and Caldera Systems. Also, we see interesting players: some of Caldera's money came from Sun Microsystems.
Turbo Linux's investors make up another interesting list: Dell, Compaq, NEC, SCO, Toshiba, et al. For anyone who has tried to buy a Toshiba computer without MS Windows, this is fairly surprising. And just a year or two ago, SCO was telling us we could trade in our copy of Linux to upgrade to SCO UNIX.
Another interesting company is TiVo, Inc., profiled in last month's LJ. The quick summary is they have created a Personal TV Receiver, a Linux-based system that acts like the world's smartest VCR, recording up to 30 hours of TV programs on a hard disk. Why is TiVo hot? First, Phillips is making the systems, so we have a major manufacturer behind this “Linux and your TV” effort. Second, TiVo secured a pact with Blockbuster to do video-on-demand.
There's more. Macromedia will likely open source their flash player. Transmeta (see “Stop the Presses”) has announced their Crusoe chip. Huge investments have been made in Linuxcare. The Caldera IPO is happening.
Linux has grown up. It is finally being recognized as something that solves problems, not just for computer geeks, but also for the mainstream. In the eyes of businesspeople, Linux is finally more than a web server.
My prediction is this is just the beginning. More companies like TiVo will adopt embedded Linux in the mass market. While Internet Appliances (IAs) will be based on other platforms, a majority of the IAs will likely run Linux—it has the functionality and the right price.
The acceptance of Linux in the embedded market adds to Linux's success in the server market. When people access Linux-based web servers from their Linux-based IA, they are getting a strong message that Linux, not Microsoft, is bringing them technology.
I hate to just conclude we won, but it seems like we are there. Linux is marketing itself these days. Geeks believe in it, embedded-systems developers believe in it, and the general public has gone from not knowing it exists to seeing it as a viable answer for their needs. I'm not sure if my next toaster or car will run Linux, but I wouldn't be surprised if it happened.
Oh, and Bill: if that point in Salon Magazine was right, please stop by. I will be happy to give you a copy of our new Linux Command Summary.
Practical Task Scheduling Deployment
July 20, 2016 12:00 pm CDT
One of the best things about the UNIX environment (aside from being stable and efficient) is the vast array of software tools available to help you do your job. Traditionally, a UNIX tool does only one thing, but does that one thing very well. For example, grep is very easy to use and can search vast amounts of data quickly. The find tool can find a particular file or files based on all kinds of criteria. It's pretty easy to string these tools together to build even more powerful tools, such as a tool that finds all of the .log files in the /home directory and searches each one for a particular entry. This erector-set mentality allows UNIX system administrators to seem to always have the right tool for the job.
Cron traditionally has been considered another such a tool for job scheduling, but is it enough? This webinar considers that very question. The first part builds on a previous Geek Guide, Beyond Cron, and briefly describes how to know when it might be time to consider upgrading your job scheduling infrastructure. The second part presents an actual planning and implementation framework.
Join Linux Journal's Mike Diehl and Pat Cameron of Help Systems.
Free to Linux Journal readers.Register Now!
- SUSE LLC's SUSE Manager
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- My +1 Sword of Productivity
- Managing Linux Using Puppet
- Non-Linux FOSS: Caffeine!
- Doing for User Space What We Did for Kernel Space
- SuperTuxKart 0.9.2 Released
- Google's SwiftShader Released
- Parsing an RSS News Feed with a Bash Script
- Rogue Wave Software's Zend Server
With all the industry talk about the benefits of Linux on Power and all the performance advantages offered by its open architecture, you may be considering a move in that direction. If you are thinking about analytics, big data and cloud computing, you would be right to evaluate Power. The idea of using commodity x86 hardware and replacing it every three years is an outdated cost model. It doesn’t consider the total cost of ownership, and it doesn’t consider the advantage of real processing power, high-availability and multithreading like a demon.
This ebook takes a look at some of the practical applications of the Linux on Power platform and ways you might bring all the performance power of this open architecture to bear for your organization. There are no smoke and mirrors here—just hard, cold, empirical evidence provided by independent sources. I also consider some innovative ways Linux on Power will be used in the future.Get the Guide