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Re: IT and UNIX
- To: Multiple recipients of list <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Subject: Re: IT and UNIX
- From: David Dunn <email@example.com>
- Date: Thu, 06 Nov 1997 07:50:26 -0500
- Organization: VC3, Inc.
- References: <21F279606ADD4DA685256547000F3CC6.000F3CF785256547@erra.vc3.com>
- Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
Paul Ingels wrote:
> Please visit the following site:
> This is on a Fortune 100 company's server and talks about the nightmares
> of switching to NT. 50% increase in department funding, more servers
> while less users, 1/3 increase in trouble tickets..... I could go on, but
> like I said, this is posted on the company server, on a fortune 100
> company that was forced (management) to switch to NT. All this "it's
> cheaper" talk is disputed almost directly by this post.
Thanks for the URL. I took a quick look at it and found it very
interesting. I'll give it a more in depth look, later. However,
from my quick overview it seems that the move to NT which was
analyzed was primarily a move from OS/2. My comments below
were focused on the support differences between UNIX and NT.
The numbers I gave come from my personal experiences as both a
member of a Fortune 500 company (in a previous life) and
a provider of outsourced consulting services to Fortune 500
companies (in my current life). My point being that they
are based on experiences I've seen and my customers have seen
in large environments and are at least as valid as the Aberdeen
study. That's not to say these experiences will mimic
everyone's experiences. There are a lot of factors involved
that can contribute to both successful and failed technology switches.
Also, I still firmly believe that there are areas of corporate
application functionality which should still reside on UNIX - in
no way am I advocating a complete migration to NT.
> Besides, what is this switch from UNIX to NT. That is like going from the
> top of the line to the bottom. What happened to OS/2 and Novell. Both
> are much better then NT. NT 5.0 (due out in about 2 years) will finally
> catch up to Novell 4.11, but where will Novell be by then!
Hmmm. I admit to having zero experience with either OS/2 or Novell
so I can't really answer your question. I will agree with your
point, however, that UNIX is far superior in many respects than
NT. What many UNIX supporters (and UNIX development
organizations) seem to forget , however, is that even
though NT is weaker in many ways than UNIX, NT still probably
meets the needs of about 70% to 80%
of the market. My guess is that, for this reason, over time we
will see NT hold about 70% to 80% of the midrange server market. There
will always be things that UNIX does better and UNIX will have a
place in the Corporate environment for some time to come, but
the majority share will be owned by NT. In my view, this is
probably the one thing that Microsoft understands better than
anyone else - solve the problems of 70% to 80% of the market and
not worry about the rest. Meanwhile, UNIX vendors work extremely
hard to create a platform that solve the problems of 100% of
the market (which is admirable) but they lose market share as a
> David Dunn wrote:
> > Mark Hinds wrote:
> > >
> > > Corporate wide the plan is to dump UNIX servers and get latched up with
> > > NT servers. The necessity of doing this is unclear to me. The process
> > > of changing ordinary people over from Win31/pcnfs to WinNT/SMB/Wins
> > > has been very costly and disruptive. The drive seems to have come
> > > from above.
> > >
> > Here's some theories on why they may be doing it:
> > 1) It's tremendously easier to find NT administrators than UNIX
> > administrators. If you can't find them you can train them to
> > reasonable proficiency in about a week - contrast that with what
> > it takes to get someone proficient at supporting a UNIX system.
> > 2) NT administrators cost a lot less than UNIX administrators.
> > 3) It takes more time to support a UNIX box than an NT box (my
> > estimate is about 2x the amount of time and that's probably being
> > generous to UNiX). Granted, the UNIX box can handle more load so,
> > theoretically, you need less of them. But the reality of most
> > of today's corporate compute environments is that systems become
> > application centric with each system servicing one application
> > (i.e. one database server for your accounting package, one for
> > your human resource package, etc.) so whether your using UNIX
> > or NT you end up with the same number of systems (just more excess
> > bandwidth on the UNIX side).
> > 4) The Win31/pcnfs to WinNT/SMB/Wins switch is probably also being
> > made to cut support costs. We've seen as much as 2x decrease in the
> > cost of client support in some customer environments with the move to
> > Win95/WinNT from a Win31/nfs environment.
> > The bottom line is costs. If there is no compelling reason to
> > stick with UNIX for a given application or service, then it's
> > cheaper to switch to NT.
> > Of course, there is absolutely no technical reason why a strain
> > of UNIX cannot be developed that would be just as easy to use
> > and support as NT. But UNIX system vendors and system developers (a
> > group which I was a part of for the first 8 years of my career)
> > spend so much time working on creating technological superiority
> > in certain areas (i.e. extremely fast database performance,
> > configurability to the nth degree, etc.) that they often forget to make
> > the stuff usable by the average administrator. Even when they
> > do try to "dumb-down" the adminstration of their OS, they rarely
> > get it right (I've got no good theories as to why).
> > David
> > --
> > David Dunn | Email: email@example.com
> > VC3, Inc. | URL: http://www.vc3.com
> > 712 Richland St. Suite F. | Phone: (803) 733-7333
> > Columbia, SC 29201 | Fax: (803) 733-5888
David Dunn | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
VC3, Inc. | URL: http://www.vc3.com
712 Richland St. Suite F. | Phone: (803) 733-7333
Columbia, SC 29201 | Fax: (803) 733-5888