Open source migration must be evolutionary

Open source migration must be evolutionary

Summary: Open source migration should not be a religion. It needs to be a practical step, actually a series of practical steps, each taken for practical reasons.

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TOPICS: Open Source
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Jon Voight as Milo Minderbinder in Catch-22The failure of Vienna, Austria's open source migration program teaches a powerful lesson to enterprises of all sorts. (Jon Voight played Milo Minderbinder in the film version of Catch-22.)

Open source migration should not be a religion. It needs to be a practical step, actually a series of practical steps, each taken for practical reasons.

Wholesale migration is very, very tough to pull off. I know of someone doing that with an application stack and it's taken years-and-years. Systems are just too complex to allow that kind of wholesale rip-and-replace without very careful planning.

That lack of planning seems to have plagued Vienna. That, and a lack of testing. Maybe some Microsoft sabotage. Whatever, the problems spooked the constables into switching all the way back, at immense cost.

The right way to do an open source migration is slowly, step by step, application by application, bit by bit. That is generally how the world is moving, with open source slowly increasing its market share.

The wrong way to do an open source migration is all at once. And the way you go down that road is by selling it as religion, or politics. It's not. It's business.

Think of open source as evolution in action.  

Topic: Open Source

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7 comments
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  • I agree

    The risk and effort involved in a all-in one migration is very high. Open source works great with proprietary software so there is no reason to migrate the server-side all at once. The desktop is a little harder to do.

    James Dixon
    jimmyed2000
  • This is why FOSS apps on Windows are so valuable.

    OpenOffice.org can be used directly in place of MS Office for most users, and it can be dropped in place on an existing workstation. Ditto for the entire trainload of other Open Source apps that I use regularly, like Firefox, Scribus, the GIMP, LyX, Inkscape, GnuCash, Pidgin, FileZilla, KVirc, Audacity, etc.

    Given that these apps run on multiple platforms, it's no big step to move from a Windows desktop on which they reside onto a Linux desktop. Some users literally don't notice the difference.

    IMHO, the trick to migrating is to standardize on formats and interfaces, not on apps, and not on a platform. When apps are recommended, limit the list to those that run on multiple platforms.
    dave.leigh@...
  • Lesson #1

    "The failure of Vienna, Austria?s open source migration
    program teaches a powerful lesson to enterprises of all
    sorts"

    Yes it does. The lesson is that MS will use any means to
    prevent migration off their lock-in platform. The migration
    failed because MS backed software was IE only.

    Vienna's decision to use WINE to workaround this is a
    mistake, when the effort should have been made to
    produce a Firefox version.

    ?8m will now be spent effectively to run a MS backed
    badly written language program.
    Richard Flude
  • The Reason is Elementary

    From: http://news.zdnet.co.uk/software/0,1000000121,39429910,00.htm

    "A key factor in the rollback decision is software used in a kindergarten language-learning programme called 'Schlaum??use', which requires Internet Explorer, according to city officials quoted in the report."

    Or possibly the calculator utility didn't convert to Euros. Some day, and that day may be a long, long way off, the truth will come out.
    kozmcrae
    • Strange way of going about it.

      I am not sure why the city felt the need to create their own custom distro (Weinex), but they can, and they aren't scrapping it. I suspect using Mandriva or Ubuntu as a base, set up the programs, language then roll your own ISO would have been sufficient.

      Regardless, someone made the decision to introfuce an incompatibile software program into the middle of a pilot program. That's bad enough (kind of like your CEO purchasing 500 winprinters as you try to roll out RHEL, lol), however, CodeWeavers, with their extensive expertise, can and does work with customers to develop and integrate solutions just like the above.

      I would be floored if 1/10th of the 8M Eur wasn't more than enough to have them fix the crash problem. Time will tell, however, how much heartache they have rolling out Vista, and whether the 8M is realistic.

      TripleII
      TripleII-21189418044173169409978279405827
    • Cold Turkey is a rough road to travel

      A Herion addiction accompanied by a few snorts of Coke.

      But this sounds more like Microsoft hanky-panky.

      The headline was "Vienna hobbles open-source migration". They don't know it yet, but they just hobbled themselves, NOT Open Source.

      "The city has not offered enough incentives for migration to Linux"

      Well, duuuuh! Follow the money. The trail will always lead to Redmond, via a crooked trail.
      Ole Man
  • RE: Open source migration must be evolutionary

    That is generally how the world is moving, with open source slowly increasing its market share.<a href="http://ipadbagblog.com/"><font color="white"> k</font></a>
    zakkiromi