Bergen's CTO: Why we moved to Linux

Summary:The second largest city in Norway is moving its servers to Linux. We chat to Bergen's CTO on the practical business of going open source in public

Was your existing infrastructure giving you reliability problems?
The educational network had lots of troubles -- our database servers weren't unreliable, but they were quite old, the HP 3000 running older version of the HP UX, and we had several servers that had reached the end of life. After five years, hardware support costs rise. It's important you have full support for databases.

Has anything about the process surprised you?
We haven't had any unpleasant surprises, other than the press coverage. Despite some press reports in the Norwegian papers, we are not chucking out Windows. For our employees used to working on Windows and Office, to open the paper and see incorrect reports saying that we were terminating use of Windows caused quite a bit of discussion. We have already paid for Windows, so it would not be a good economic decision to jump about. Sooner or later, our Office platform will reach the end of its life, and we will re-evaluate what we do. We will look at a Linux desktop next year, but we have to test it, and it would mean that the teachers would have to use both the pupil's Linux desktop and their own Windows desktops, which might make life hard for them. Sooner or later we will review that, but there are no decisions there as yet.

Topics: Apps, Software Development

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