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‘Show you can beat NT’ – MS declares war on Linux

The Beast of Redmond says it will re-run a controversial shootout, and this time it's personal

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Microsoft has issued what amounts to a declaration of war on the Linux community, issuing a public challenge to a Linux versus NT shootout, to be hosted by PC Week Labs. Microsoft seems to have been seriously needled by Linux criticism of an MS-sponsored study carried out by Mindcraft (Linux camp slashes out at survey), and claims Mindcraft has now agreed to redo the tests, and to meet all of the conditions required by the "top Linux creators," Linus Torvalds included. Coincidentally the challenge, issued here yesterday, is supported by recent tests published by PC Week and PC Magazine. NT seems to do awfully well in these, and Microsoft says they "corroborate the Mindcraft findings." According to Microsoft, in challenging the validity of the earlier tests Linus, Alan Cox and Jeremy Allison demanded a re-run, where they could configure and tune the servers themselves and be present to ensure the tests weren't rigged. The tests should be run at a neutral location (come on, ZD surely qualifies?), have third party witnesses, and be run on lower-end hardware and using NT Workstation and Win95 clients. Mindcraft is said to have agreed all this, with those nice people at ZD also qualifying as independent witnesses. But "the Linux community [has been] slow to respond," booms Microsoft. "It's time for the Linux folks to step up to the challenge and prove that Linux is capable of achieving better results than those published in the Mindcraft report." War drums? We think we can hear them... ®

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