Open Source Continues To Spread Through Official Circles

In the last several years, governments — and particularly those in Europe — have been snapping up Open Source alternatives like little old ladies at Loehmann's. The push towards Open continued this week as the Dutch police ditched Windows for the rosy cap.

Last March, the French Gendarmerie announced the dramatic reduction of its IT budget by 70%, thanks to the use of Open Source software, primarily in the form of Ubuntu desktops, and with the help of OpenOffice and Thunderbird, among others. Around this time last year, the German Foreign Office revealed that it had implemented Linux desktops in over half of the nation's 230 embassies and consulates, just one more in a long trail of German Open Source deployments, including the Ministry of the Interior, the state of Lower Saxony, and the City of Munich.

Now the Dutch are in on the action. According to reports, Tux will be appearing among the tulips, in the form of two Red Hat Network Satellite Servers and some 500 Red Hat Enterprise Linux subscriptions selected by the voorziening tot samenwerking Politie Nederland (vtsPN), or Police Cooperation. According to Red Hat's Sandor Klein, the move is part of a greater trend "in various government reduce costs."

Choosing Linux is part of a recent policy change by the Dutch police — according to the new directive, the service will select only Open Source options for its technology needs. Likewise, a vow to work to advance Open Source and open standards was recently made by the Dutch Minister of Internal Affairs. Reportedly, the shift was the result of the severe criticism received after the organization requested 30,000 Windows systems at the beginning of the year.

By all accounts, this is just the first of many deployments, and particularly so if the Open Source-only policy remains in effect. One of the responsibilities of the vtsPN is to standardize the technology used by the National Police as well as the country's 25 regional law enforcement services.

Editor's Note: The primary source for this announcement is in Dutch. As we are not fluent in Dutch, we have used an English-language secondary source. Confirmation has been requested from Red Hat — as of press time, a response was not immediately available.

Justin Ryan is a Contributing Editor for Linux Journal.


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

If only those in the US saw this too...

apexwm's picture

Europe is so ahead of the USA, when it comes to using Open Source and ditching proprietary programs like Windows. Hopefully others will wake up and realize the power and benefits of Open Source. I have used Linux and seen its many advantages over Windows for over 12 years, and I will never use Windows again.

White Paper
Linux Management with Red Hat Satellite: Measuring Business Impact and ROI

Linux has become a key foundation for supporting today's rapidly growing IT environments. Linux is being used to deploy business applications and databases, trading on its reputation as a low-cost operating environment. For many IT organizations, Linux is a mainstay for deploying Web servers and has evolved from handling basic file, print, and utility workloads to running mission-critical applications and databases, physically, virtually, and in the cloud. As Linux grows in importance in terms of value to the business, managing Linux environments to high standards of service quality — availability, security, and performance — becomes an essential requirement for business success.

Learn More

Sponsored by Red Hat

White Paper
Private PaaS for the Agile Enterprise

If you already use virtualized infrastructure, you are well on your way to leveraging the power of the cloud. Virtualization offers the promise of limitless resources, but how do you manage that scalability when your DevOps team doesn’t scale? In today’s hypercompetitive markets, fast results can make a difference between leading the pack vs. obsolescence. Organizations need more benefits from cloud computing than just raw resources. They need agility, flexibility, convenience, ROI, and control.

Stackato private Platform-as-a-Service technology from ActiveState extends your private cloud infrastructure by creating a private PaaS to provide on-demand availability, flexibility, control, and ultimately, faster time-to-market for your enterprise.

Learn More

Sponsored by ActiveState