Stories by Kevin Railsback

The Politics of Standardized Privacy

Trust is the key to any business relationship. Without it, deals don't happen and customers don't make purchases. But on the Internet, trust can be a very difficult thing to earn. A large segment of the general public is already cautious about doing business online, having heard countless horror stories about people being victimized by sites that track their movements through the Web or launch guerrilla marketing attacks against them. And if you don't have a brick-and-mortar presence or a name-brand identity, how do potential business partners or customers even know who you are?

Dick Sullivan Delves into IBM's Open-Source Focus

Because many industry heavyweights have begun supporting the Linux OS on their products, we were curious to see what IBM Corp.'s plans are. Kevin Railsback, West Coast technical director at InfoWorld, spoke with Dick Sullivan, vice president of integrated solutions marketing at IBM's Software Group, based in Armonk, N.Y. Sullivan gave us the lowdown on IBM's future Linux and open-source initiatives for an overall sense of IBM's stance on Linux

Is ViaVoice for Linux Ready to Do Business?

IBM Corp. is making a strong push to fully support Linux. One interesting offering is its ViaVoice Dictation for Linux. It has been on the Windows platform for a while, and IBM recently decided to bring its speech recognition star to the Linux platform.

Windows 2000: A Complex Server

In this article, I examined the business impact of integrating a network of PCs connected to a Microsoft Corp. Windows 2000 file-and-print server into an existing enterprise environment. In this scenario, the large company, Bigcorp, has just acquired a small start-up, Smallco. I examined the pros and cons of integrating the two networks, including training and support costs. I found Windows 2000 Advanced Server to require more work than the other NOSes in this report. Nonetheless, your prospects for success in a similar situation are reasonable. I rate Windows 2000's interoperability Good.

Linux Fits in Well, but Adds Costs

In this analysis, I examined the business impact of integrating Smallco's network of PCs connected to a Red Hat Inc. Linux 6.2 server into Bigcorp, an existing enterprise environment. Smallco is a startup company with a simple infrastructure.

Novell Overhypes Active Directory Bug

Novell Inc. this week pointed out a flaw in the way Microsoft Windows 2000's Active Directory (AD) handles security permissions for some objects. Microsoft quickly denied this bug existed, saying Novell had improperly configured its AD setup. I tested this in the InfoWorld Test Center and found that the bug exists, but only because Novell missed a security step.

Upgrading Servers - Worthy, but Costly

We've heard the hype about Microsoft Corp.'s Windows 2000, and we've watched the ship date slip. After testing Windows 2000 at last, I can report that it was well worth the wait. Windows 2000 Server and Advanced Server are not only easier to install and administer than Windows NT 4.0, but they also offer considerably faster performance.

Lowering the Cost of Upgrading

Making the move from Microsoft Corp.'s Windows NT or NetWare to Windows 2000 is not a job to be taken lightly. You must weigh factors beyond the time and money necessary to perform the migration. Training costs for IT staff and employees plus the much more advanced hardware requirements of Windows 2000 can make the upgrade much more expensive than it first appears.

Infracenter for Workgroups Mixes Powerful Features

AS TECHNOLOGY CHANGES at an increasing rate, many companies throw a lot of money at keeping their IT infrastructure up-to-date. A major hurdle in the race to keep your computers up to speed is knowing what hardware and software is deployed in your organization, who is using it, and how much it costs to support these resources.