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Re: This was posted on Digg.com -- Linux Distribution blog/article
Red Hat and Novell have package distros and cater services around their
"enterprise" subscriptions/licenses. By using more fixed and well-
tested/proven configurations, they can leverage their software and
services to a great majority of customers with similar needs. A great
amount of services can be provided with limited cost, all while selling
the subscription/licenses that provide those fixed, well-tested/proven
IBM and Progeny do not have distros and cater their services around
leveraging other distros -- all types. They cater more to the
individual needs of businesses, and make more money on consulting
services -- customizing for the individual client. Although they do
recycle some mindshare to other firms, and that is usable across their
client-based as well as sent up to the distro vendors, it's really about
delivering customized solutions.
These are where the money is at. Remember what the term "enterprise"
connotates, not the more recent attitude that it's "less broken."
What's left are the users, large and small, that have the time and
resources. They are typically large departments at an enterprise, or
maybe a system integrator who caters to a significant, but still small,
niche or set of niches. Most "enterprise" distros will impede their
needs for customization, leaving the more "rapidly changing" package
distros or "ports."
They are the ones who maintain their own, _extensive_ testing and
management procedures to rolling out "standard," tested, secured and
well-managed solutions. They take on that responsibility, because it's
less load to provide that detail than to fight against the fixed
configuration of the "enterprise" distros.
They are _not_ are the ones that are _ignorant_ of proper testing,
management, etc... and fire off emerge individually on each system.
Those are the Gentoo users you are thinking of. I'm _not_ one of them,
nor was Daniel Robbins, and I'm extremely quick to jump on the Gentoo
users who are more like the equivalent of "mod-car enthusiasts" than the
ones who realize it takes a lot to build a stable, reliable and
predictable Corvette. ;->
Bryan J. Smith mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
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