Linux in public service

Unbelievable? You’d better believe it! The City of Munich has completed the migration to Linux of 15,000 desktops! An interesting short read of a decade long project. If you want to stretch your German here’s the original article. You could also offer it to Google Translate… A longer report is here with a concluding critical look at the cost & support situation.

No, LiMux is not available for download as that belongs to the City of Munich but, there are only detail difference to Ubuntu. They saved more than 10 million Euros up to now…

A more tech detailed account and how M$ tried to prevent the change is here. There is an anecdote of that era told at LinuxTag 2013 by Peter Hoffman (LiMux project leader) about the time when Bill Gates himself spoke with the Mayor. At one point, Gates asked the Mayor what his reasons were for this Linux migration. The answer ‘We want more freedom” did not satisfy Gates, and he asked “Freedom from what?”. The major replied with “Freedom from you, Mr. Gates!’”

The German Federal Minister of the Exterior said it succinctly here, and I quote:
LinuxTag joins users, developers and software vendors from many different countries to discuss latest development and future perspectives. Linux is a global synonyme for free software. But beyond “free software”, there is more to discover. It is a symbol for an open society, both from the inside and the outside. Open source benefits from the fact that development is not centralised with a single person or a company, but lies within the hands of many developers all over the world. Therefore, it benefits from a greater intellectual capacity. I am deeply convinced of this colloquial and public approach, which is promising now and will gain even more importance in the future.

It seems in some areas democracy is still alive and there are government departments that support it! Software by the people for the people… and ISO is also part of the game, publicly standardizing instead of privatizing how things are done or should be.

And then there is the very positive security assessment done by the UK Government.

Finally, some of the pros & cons of the available operating systems are discussed here.

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