Microsoft tells US retailers Linux is rubbish
'What most customers want' is Windows
As the launch of Windows 7 approaches, Microsoft is distributing literature to American retailers claiming that Linux works with few peripherals or online services, offers limited software capability, affords no authorized support, does not work with games "your customers want," and cannot use video chat on any of the major IM networks.
"What most customers want" is Windows, the literature says, not Linux.
According to a sales employee working in an Office Depot store on the east coast of the United States, a Microsoft representative recently provided him and his fellow sales staff with booklets that attempt to put Linux in an unfavorable light. And the booklets mirror information from a Microsoft online training course given to Best Buy employees, just brought to light by the Advanced Linux Technology blog.
One booklet shared with our Office Depot salesman includes a page that looks like this:
And another booklet includes this:
The claims are not unlike those Microsoft has made in the past, and Redmond has acknowledged the materials are authentic. "Microsoft works with its partners to help them prepare to sell our products in a competitive marketplace," a company spokeswoman told The Reg, before referring to the Best Buy slides. "This deck, which is just one of many reference materials we provide our retail partners, was specifically developed to show sales professionals the important differences between Linux computers and Windows computers, so they are well equipped to help customers purchase a PC that gives them the experience they expect."
On both charts, Microsoft cites Linux.org and the Microsoft Windows Compatibility Center as sources. But many of the claims are misleading at best. As pointed out by the Best Buy employee who took Redmond's online training course, World of Warcraft - Microsoft's example of a game "your customers want" - can run on Linux via WINE, a free software app for getting such Windows apps onto the open-source OS. Countless outfits provide Linux support. Video chat is available from Skype and other services. And using an iPod on Linux is far from unheard of.
But our favorite bit is Microsoft's claim that Linux doesn't work with Windows Live Essentials, the company's very own collection of online services. This claim is correct. And should come as no surprise. ®
Who want's 'em?
In all honesty, what kind of a fskced group of people is going to want to have anything to do with the kind of gobshites who are going to believe this?
We know the kind of idiots PCworld .etc employ, we know the kind of idiots that are also users and we don't want them clogging up the forums asking where the "any" key is.
MS software can seriously waste your weekend!
I totally trashed GDM (Gnome Display Manager - one of the many choices for a graphical desktop environment for *nix) the other day on my Ubuntu system (completely my own fault, being a little too zealous when removing 'orphaned' packages).
This in itself is not a unique Linux phenomena, I have terminally broken *plenty* of Win installations, they are just not as easy to fix.
So, I was faced with two simple choices (only no.2 would have been available with Windoze);
1) find, fix and reinstall the broken packages using the command line.
2) reinstall the OS.
I estimated that I might spend and hour or more on option 1, so I got out my CD and reinstalled (20mins).
Now, *here's the real killer*. After reinstalling the OS from scratch and rebooting, everything was still as I left it. Junk on my desktop, emails in my inbox, all passwords remembered, browser favourites, even my WPA keys! Do that on a windows box. I bet you can't.
Personally, I have pi$$ed away entire weekends reinstalling Windoze and the apps I had, then copying back all my data (if I had a recent backup).
The secret sauce? my home directory (it's like 'My Documents' but better because it actually contains *all* your stuff!) lives on a separate partition to the OS.
People that whine about Linux being hard to use make me want to puke. Have these people used Windows? I can only imaging that they haven't. My 2 year old daughter can use a Ubuntu machine with ease and, best of all, she can't break it. She can break a windows box in a few minutes!
Linux - it just works!
I became battle-hardened on XP, but have had the misfortune to use both Shista and Win7.
To be fair, Win7 is a helluva improvement on Shista, but it still blows bigtime in comparison to any modern Linux distro. I have to work with crappy MS products, but I wouldn't switch my own machines back if you paid me. Probably not even then!