Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Linux Desktop

Exploring the differences between popular and enterprise Linux distributions.
Conclusion

If XP is broken soon, and all earlier versions of Windows (see Figure 1) do not receive the same quality of support as XP, one has to wonder what enterprise-grade software means to Microsoft. You have to wonder if its next-generation Windows solves the dilemma.

Figure 1. Windows Version Splits

Source: OpenOffice.org User Survey 2002-2003 (total responses: 208,373)

Tom Adelstein lives in Dallas, Texas, and Sam Hiser lives in New York City. Both work as local and national Linux and open-source software consultants. They're the co-authors of the upcoming book Exploring the JDS Linux Desktop, published by O'Reilly and Associates. Both have written numerous articles on Linux technical and marketing issues as guest editors for a variety of publications. One of their latest projects is JDSHelp.org.

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Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

While Linux is making progress, the Red Hat common criteria evaluation is a joke. EAL2 assurance doesn't even require complete testing or access to developers, so isn't much, despite distinguished company. Worse, the Common Criteria Certification report says:
The following features of Red Hat Enterprise Linux were specifically excluded from the evaluation:

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

EAL Certification does not mean much, if it is based on limited conditions and is based on a security target that is not very strict. Obviously the Red Hat certification has limitations in practical terms, but for that matter, so did Windows 2000, which supposedly was not supposed to run applications, be connected to the internet or have a floppy drive for its certification. Kind of makes one wonder about the whole process does it not?

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

Those terms for Windows related to C2 certification and had to do with Windows NT 3.51.

The Common Criteria certs mean quit a lot. Where do you MS trolls come from? Are you trained in disinformation? Where will you apply those skills once MS bites the dust?

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

He didn't say that Common Criteria doesn't mean much, he said that the EAL level doesn't mean much, which is true. Much more meaningful is the protection profiles (PP) tested against and the restrictions. In that sense, the chart given in the article is quite misleading, because the EAL level given doesn't have much to do with the level of security of the system under evaluation. It has more to do with the level of assurance that the system in question really mets the certification that it gets.

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

This is from a Microsoft troll.

Ignore at will.

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

Did you say that the RH CC was a joke?

You're an expert -- and we should do what with your opinion? Make a buying decision? Grow tomatoes? What?

Let me see if I understand this. You take something out of context, write an opinion and it's supposed to mean something. IS that right?

So, X- Windows is important for a server? Support for Appletalk and IPX?

When Apache gets it's own CC - then Red Hat will be OK?

Why did you bother to write anything? To amuse yourself?

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

Maybe, he thinks he knows something about benchmarks or certifications. I didn't get that he did. What was the point?

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

Some people feel like they need to vote on everything. They can't just shutup and listen. I didn't think his comment was particularly important, amusing or thoughtful. He must have thought he was on Slashdot or one of the Debian mailing lists. I guess.

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

cjcox's picture

Minor correction:
Red Hat came to this conclusion and chose to eliminate its long-time retail product and turn it into a free project, called Fedora.

Red Hat's offering has always been free. Though they did have a retail package that you could buy (most just downloaded it). The major change is that it went from a solely Red Hat developed offering to a community developed offering (with Red Hat owning the guidance and direction) with a more frequent release schedule.

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

Anonymous's picture

I discussed this with Leigh May in an interview. Red Hat called it their retail product. No one said anything about it being free. Although at the time, it was free. It just didn't enter into the conversation. The conversation centered around subscriptions at $60 per year per machine.

She did say that they wanted it to be more community based- but they were discontinuing the Retail Product and service. Not that it matters much since they did discontinue it, got the brand changed and only sell Enterprise Linux.

Is anyone confused by that? Or that Matthew said Windows was better for the home user?

Tom

So much for Freedom? Fedora trademark use restrictions

Anonymous's picture

http://fedora.redhat.com/about/trademarks/guidelines/page4.html

So much for "Freedom"? Fedora started out as an attempt to beat Debian at their own "game". It's now a Red Hat Software sub project, and thus, is corporate controlled. I much prefer the co-operative and open style of the Debian GNU/Linux project and Software in the Public Interest, where just about anyone can apply to become a maintainer, and thereby receive voting rights within the democratic organization:

http://www.debian.org/devel/
http://www.spi-inc.org/

Re: Linux in Government: How to Misunderstand the Enterprise Lin

cjcox's picture

That wasn't worded as clearly as I liked... obviously Red Hat, like all other Linux distributions is dependent on community contributions and free software. However Red Hat owned the organization, administration and installation aspects of their product in that they alone developed on those pieces until Fedora.. now there is even more community involvement and a bit less red tape (hmmm... now I know why it's called RED tape).

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