Opinion

Opening Windows: the threat from Open Source



Simon Moores

Tech Talk

If you believe the latest IT Portal research, more than half the adult population of the UK would move away from Windows if the opportunity presented itself.

And many respondents have now looked at Linux as a possible Windows NT alternative, which is interesting as this appears to have grown from zero to 60% in 12 months. But if there's a glimmer of good news for Microsoft in this poll, it's that 39% of respondents haven't looked at Linux yet.

An auspicious start for Windows 2000 then? On 17 February, Microsoft will seek to eclipse millennium celebrations with the launch party. Forget the "river of fire", word has it that Bill has bought the London Eye from British Airways, and that at the stroke of midnight, he will light the fuse that will turn it into a huge catherine wheel, moments after specially selected members of the IT press have taken their seats on the gondolas.

Personally, I wouldn't be too dismayed by the survey. It's very easy to declare one's interest in moving to something better, faster or even cheaper.

But until Linux applications start to share equal space with Windows at PC World, I doubt that Microsoft has a great deal to worry about.

Simon Moores is chairman of the Windows NTForum and Java Forum

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This was first published in February 2000

 

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