Linux may kill Windows: expert

An IT industry expert is predicting Linux - which he says is now ready for use by large organisations - could kill off Microsoft Windows within two years.

IT author and Australian National University visiting fellow Tom Worthington said Linux was making the same transition as the Internet once did, from academic toy to commercial hot property.

"In 1996 I believed that Linux would coexist with Microsoft Windows and IBM OS/2. Since then OS/2 has disappeared. If the easy-to-install Linuxes come out this year and actually work, then Microsoft Windows is likely to disappear within two years," Worthington said at the IIM 2000 Global Information in the 21st Century conference in Melbourne, recently.

Worthington said the Linux hype was about to reach the financial and business community.

"The reality is that Linux is now ready for use by large organisations who have staff to install and support it . . . The Australian National University has built a Linux supercomputer from 192 PCs, which out-performs commercial units."

He said Unix workstations were ubiquitous in the ANU Department of Computer Science until a year ago, now the X-terminals and Unix workstations are being replaced by PCs running Linux.

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