Feeds

Brussels to spend €250k on Linux migration study

Major architectural rethink

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Business security measures using SSL

The European Commission has awarded UK-based consultancy netproject a €250,000 contract to study the issues of migrating government computers in member states to a Linux / Open Source environment.

netproject has been hired by the Commission to draw up guidelines on a move to open source technologies and to help define EU IT strategy on desktop computing. The German state of Mecklenburg-Pomerania
is to be used as a test bed in defining this strategy, which goes beyond the investigation of a switch between Windows and Linux PCs.

netproject plans to put forward an architecture for secure computing based on Linux in its report, which is due to be delivered in five months time, and will detail plans on how to take the project forward.

The consultancy won the contract largely on the basis of European interest in a pilot scheme to roll out Linux desktops with West Yorkshire police force.

The deployment is taking place under a contract awarded to netproject earlier this year by the UK Police IT Organisation, and if successful could cover over 60,000 desktops.

The approach and architecture of the system is what sets it apart, and sparked the interest of Brussels in doing something similar.

Eddie Bleasdale, a director at netproject, calls it the "Secure Open Desktop Architecture." The user-facing part of the West Yorkshire police system consists of an ultra low cost machine being supplied by the Telford office of Taiwanese company GCI, price £299, including a smart card reader.

The system, which can include legacy Windows systems, making it easier for customers to transition to open source. The clients themselves are 'stateless,' so a user can log on with their smartcard from any machine on the network, and get immediate access to their personal desktop, which includes Openoffice.

Bleasdale told us there was "more than just a passing interest" in this work when he met people from seven European countries who are working on how to deploy Linux for public administration.

Countries represented included: Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Spain and a representative from the European Commission.

The majority of delegates said that their main concern was the cost of ownership of their current PCs, Bleasdale told us.

Microsoft's recently introduced licensing changes have added weight to this concern but Bleasdale said an even bigger issue was the rate of change that Microsoft is imposing on customers, and many are struggling to deal with it. This calls for a major rethink in computing architecture, such as West Yorkshire Police have embraced, he added. ®

Related Stories

Secure Linux desktop begins shipping to UK police force
Linux to help police with their enquiries?
UK govt poised to embrace open source for PKI standards
Swedish government mulls Linux
Danish local govt. rebels against MS license terms

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
NHS grows a NoSQL backbone and rips out its Oracle Spine
Open source? In the government? Ha ha! What, wait ...?
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
iOS 8 Healthkit gets a bug SO Apple KILLS it. That's real healthcare!
Not fit for purpose on day of launch, says Cupertino
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.