Linux resolution advice from enterprise users

With the New Year upon us, now is the time for resolutions. Here are a few suggestions from some enterprise Linux users on what resolutions they'd like to see from Linux vendors, application developers and the open source community as a whole in 2003.

"One big thing I'd like not to happen is [the] continued fragmentation of Linux distributions," says Nate Keegan, network engineer for the city of Prescott, Ariz., which uses Linux servers almost exclusively for the city's back-end computing infrastructure. "Choice is good, and that's a big part of what Linux is all about," but having too many choices can be confusing.

Other users felt better application support should be a goal for software makers and Linux companies in the coming year.

"We would like to see a good business accounting application for Linux," says Bill Faust, senior engineer at Optim Microwave, a Westlake, Calif., manufacturing company that makes antenna equipment.

"We'd like to get a multi-user accounting application, as well as some other manufacturing resource planning and [ERP] systems running up on our Linux servers," Faust says.

Faust, whose shop runs clusters of Linux boxes to perform number-crunching tasks for engineering projects, says he has found a few open-source packages, but would like to see more variety in backend Linux application support for small businesses.

"Our Linux servers are pretty stable, and we have all the applications we need there," says Michael Phan, a system engineer at Gulf Interstate Engineering, which manufactures equipment for the oil and gas industries. "We'd like to see more support for a broader range of desktop applications."

Specifically, Phan says this should be the year that Microsoft breaks down and ports Office to Linux.

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