OS Blog: Windows, Linux Highlights From Around the Web

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The job market's still hot for Windows administrators, the Dallas Morning News claims. "Typically, those Web administrators who have .NET experience -- especially if they worked on the beta -- can find a job in less than five business days," Suzanne Rawlings at tech consulting firm NewData Strategies told reporter Victor Godinez.

"Microsoft Windows administration remains the skill set most in demand," agrees Robert Half Technology, which places contract and full-time IT workers, in its Q4 hiring forecast. "When asked which technical skill sets were in shortest supply within their IT departments, 79% of CIOs reported a need for experienced Microsoft Windows (NT/2000/XP) administrators. SQL Server administration was also a sought-after specialty, receiving 40% of the response." Cisco network admins were next, mentioned by 29% of those responding (multiple answers allowed).

Is Ford moving major sales, human resources, customer relations and other systems to Linux? The Register says so, claiming "the battle boiled down to one between Red Hat and SuSE" for Ford's business.

However, NewsForge says Ford spokeswoman Joan Witte told them: "We presently have an enterprise-wide agreement with Microsoft to handle our collaborative solutions. We aren't contemplating using Linux in this area, and don't contemplate doing that in the foreseeable future."

The number of Web servers running Windows Server 2003 has doubled since July, according to Netcraft's Internet monitoring. "The number of sites switching from Linux has proportionately kept pace since July when many commentators thought the 5% of sites switched to Windows 2003 from Linux was an aberration," Netscraft reported.

42% of Win 2003 sites were new as of January, 49% were upgrades from other Windows versions, 5% moved from Linux and 1% each came from FreeBSD and Solaris, the firm says.

TechWorld (a sister site of Computerworld.com) has issued a 20+-page white paper (registration required) examining the technical merits of Linux vs. Windows in significant detail. "We offer no blanket conclusion that Linux is better than Windows, or vice versa," the paper explains, "but point out the technological areas where one scores highly and the other less well."

The idea is to help IT managers decide what OS might work better for their enterprise based on criteria most important to them. The report includes areas such as Web servers, file and print services, networking, application software, storage and security. Author David Cartwright, a consultant in the U.K. who pledges he's got no axe to grind, says he runs both operating systems on various servers "with no particular preference."

Also, don't miss our front-page story on what IT professionals think of Microsoft-financed research that concludes Windows is a better choice than Linux. (Hint: They're not overly impressed).

September 9



Audi is using a Linux Networx cluster of 34 Intel processors to conduct design simulations for a next-generation chassis, VNUnet.com reports. Processing time was cut from two weeks to two days, the automaker says.

Microsoft last month released a network scanning tool so admins can check for host computers that don't have a recent (MS03-026) security patch installed.

The company is also still offering a free, 180-day trial of its Windows Server 2003 software. You have to use the accompanying activation key within 14 days of installation to use the trial version for the full half year.

Red Hat recently posted a white paper on deploying Oracle9i on its enterprise Linux OS (free registration required).

Novell's Nterprise Linux Services open beta is slated for release in mid-October, the company announced. Version 1.0 will include management services software from Ximian, which Novell acquired last month (see story).

September 3



Popular open source network file system Samba isn't even up to version 3 yet, but inventor Andrew Tridgell is already at work on Samba 4, he told LinuxWorld. The newest version will incorporate more comprehensive protocol support and testability, and end dependence on POSIX.

Red Hat Linux users may be encountering some problems updating their software, because "the certificate used by up2date and rhn_register to communicate with Red Hat Network reached its end of life on August 28th, 2003," according to the company Web site. "Users attempting to connect to Red Hat Network will see SSL connection or certificate verification failures." The site gives instructions on downloading a new version of RHN client software.

Opera has released its first 7.x browser versions for Solaris and Free BSD, 7.2. Opera 7.2 is also now available for Linux, according to Opera Software.

This latest release offers better performance and support for right-to-left languages such as Hebrew and Arabic, the company said.

Microsoft will be hosting a Windows Driver Development Conference, Nov. 1-14 in Redmond. For the $495 registration fee, the company promises "more than 110 hours of deep technical sessions in multiple simultaneous tracks, 30 hours of in-depth, hands-on interactive training, and five hours of Ask the Expert discussions."


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