David Crook, a consultant and 20-year IT veteran, has issued a challenge — via SearchEnterpriseLinux.com — to the open source community.
He tells me he has a shiny new IBM xSeries server “sitting idle waiting for something to make its life a little less boring.” His first thought was to install Microsoft Small Business Server (SBS), but then he asked himself: Is there something less costly and less memory-hogging than SBS?
Got any suggestions? He wants an open source or low-cost, Linux-friendly alternative that matches features with SBS. Here’s the hitch: He wants an alternative that has these features integrated in one package.
“What I want to avoid is the hassle of downloading a load of different packages, with there inherent dependencies, to achieve the equivalent. Does such a beast exist in open source land or do Microsoft still have a stranglehold in this area?”
Other than cost and memory requirements, Crook can find little wrong with SBS.
“Microsoft has managed to produce an excellent package in SBS 2003, and when compared to other Microsoft products it does stack up value-wise. I have found SBS 2003 bulletproof, and its performance is more than acceptable.”
On the other hand, Crook sees great value in Linux and open source and wants to use and recommend it more often. Ease of use issues keep getting in his way, though. He wants more Linux-supporting commercial and/or open source application packages that are simple to install and maintain.
“For all Microsoft’s faults they have been successful in making software installation and configuration reasonably straightforward. I cannot sacrifice usability!”
Is there hope for David? Can he find an alternative to SBS that has compable integrated features and ease on installation and configuration? Let him know via comments to this post or an email to me at firstname.lastname@example.org