Linux and the Enterprise Desktop: Where Are We Today?
At 135,000 students, the San Diego Unified School District (SDUSD) is the country's eighth largest. During each school day, around 100,000 of those students in grades 3–12 use a Lenovo R-Series ThinkPad laptop running SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop provided by the district as a learning tool. Dubbed the “Always-On Learning Initiative”, the purpose of the program is to promote academic success by giving all students access to the tools they'll need to learn, live and work successfully in the modern world. The name Always-On comes from the fact that students have access to a wireless network anywhere and at all times throughout the district.
Choosing Linux over other operating systems offers several advantages to SDUSD. First, the lower cost of Linux allows SDUSD to reach more students with fewer resources. By reaching more students, the chronic problem of a digital divide between wealthier and poorer students can be addressed. Second, after comparing its options, SDUSD determined that Linux was easier to scale and support, and more types of devices could be utilized. Finally, SDUSD sees that providing a laptop to everyone has great motivational and learning benefits for both teachers and students. Deputy Superintendent Geno Flores said that “students are more interested in and excited about their classroom work” thanks to the program.
The small sample of case studies above illustrate how Linux is fully ready to start taking over more desktops in companies, nonprofits and government offices worldwide. Although we long have been optimistic that Linux's day of glory would come sooner, our 20/20 hindsight allows us to grasp that usability and features had to be improved to meet the needs of most workers. Fortunately, the distribution providers have realized this fact and invested heavily in removing barriers to Linux implementation. Certainly, the maturation of virtualization has helped as well. In addition, the early adopters, whose stories are told here, have helped all of us by implementing Linux despite some unknowns and moved it forward. Now, more-conservative organizations can observe these examples and learn from their experiences, both positive and negative. So our thanks go out to Peugeot, Europcar, Howard County Library, Mosaic, San Diego Schools and the other desktop Linux pioneers for implementing Linux on a large scale and helping make it better. In a few years, you should be able to look back and be amazed at what you started.
Linux at HP: www.hp.com/linux
NoMachine NX Server: www.nomachine.com
Novell's Better Desktop Initiative: www.betterdesktop.org
Red Hat Enterprise Linux Desktop: www.redhat.com/rhel/desktop
SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop: www.novell.com/products/desktop
Ubuntu Desktop Edition: www.ubuntu.com/products/whatisubuntu/desktopedition
James Gray is Linux Journal Products Editor and a graduate student in environmental science and management at Michigan State University. A Linux enthusiast since the mid-1990s, he currently resides in Lansing, Michigan, with his wife and cats.
James Gray is Products Editor for Linux Journal.
Fast/Flexible Linux OS Recovery
On Demand Now
In this live one-hour webinar, learn how to enhance your existing backup strategies for complete disaster recovery preparedness using Storix System Backup Administrator (SBAdmin), a highly flexible full-system recovery solution for UNIX and Linux systems.
Join Linux Journal's Shawn Powers and David Huffman, President/CEO, Storix, Inc.
Free to Linux Journal readers.Register Now!
|Working with Command Arguments||May 28, 2016|
|Secure Desktops with Qubes: Installation||May 28, 2016|
|CentOS 6.8 Released||May 27, 2016|
|Secure Desktops with Qubes: Introduction||May 27, 2016|
|Chris Birchall's Re-Engineering Legacy Software (Manning Publications)||May 26, 2016|
|ServersCheck's Thermal Imaging Camera Sensor||May 25, 2016|
- Secure Desktops with Qubes: Introduction
- Secure Desktops with Qubes: Installation
- Download "Linux Management with Red Hat Satellite: Measuring Business Impact and ROI"
- Working with Command Arguments
- CentOS 6.8 Released
- The Italian Army Switches to LibreOffice
- Linux Mint 18
- ServersCheck's Thermal Imaging Camera Sensor
- Chris Birchall's Re-Engineering Legacy Software (Manning Publications)
- Petros Koutoupis' RapidDisk
Until recently, IBM’s Power Platform was looked upon as being the system that hosted IBM’s flavor of UNIX and proprietary operating system called IBM i. These servers often are found in medium-size businesses running ERP, CRM and financials for on-premise customers. By enabling the Power platform to run the Linux OS, IBM now has positioned Power to be the platform of choice for those already running Linux that are facing scalability issues, especially customers looking at analytics, big data or cloud computing.
￼Running Linux on IBM’s Power hardware offers some obvious benefits, including improved processing speed and memory bandwidth, inherent security, and simpler deployment and management. But if you look beyond the impressive architecture, you’ll also find an open ecosystem that has given rise to a strong, innovative community, as well as an inventory of system and network management applications that really help leverage the benefits offered by running Linux on Power.Get the Guide