Feds stomp on Red Hat

Feds stomp on Red Hat

Summary: A senior federal official has rebuked Linux vendor Red Hat over its criticism of the government's open-source software (OSS) takeup rate, arguing a measured approach may be "the right thing to do".Patrick Callioni, division manager at the Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO), took issue today with comments by Red Hat Asia Pacific vice president Gus Robertson that agencies were up to three years behind their overseas counterparts in embracing open-source software.

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A senior federal official has rebuked Linux vendor Red Hat over its criticism of the government's open-source software (OSS) takeup rate, arguing a measured approach may be "the right thing to do".

Patrick Callioni, division manager at the Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO), took issue today with comments by Red Hat Asia Pacific vice president Gus Robertson that agencies were up to three years behind their overseas counterparts in embracing open-source software.

"So what?," Callioni said. "It could be that governments have been slow because it might not have been the right thing to do," he told participants at the Australian Unix User Group's Open Computing in Government conference in Canberra.

"Don't judge the government on whether it uses more or less of something," he advised the company, "judge it on the value of the services it provides."

Callioni also took aim at the effectiveness of legislation mooted in jurisdictions such as South Australia and the Australian Capital Territory to mandate the consideration of OSS by government agencies.

"I would challenge governments that have enacted legislation to show any impact of that legislation," he said.

He said Australia had a shortfall of people with the capability of supporting commercial implementations of OSS.

There were only 300 to 400 small to medium enterprises in Australia that specialise in OSS, Callioni claimed. Of these, over 90 percent had less than five staff, some had around 30 employees, and few had more than 100 workers, he added.

Callioni told the audience that these companies made up a relatively small domestic industry, although it was considerably fluid and flexible.

Topics: Government, Government AU, Linux, Open Source

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4 comments
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  • It is a shame that OSS hasn't taken off in Oz but then again we've the M$ foot shoved down our throats so long its hard to get the surgen to remove it. I work in a Nursing Home as the sole IT staff member. When i started we had a constantly failing, expensive M$ network, a crash everyday, licenses for each machine - nightmare. Since then i've put in a linux firewall, linux file server, linux print server and linux intranet server and all have served very well, so well in fact that when i tell people that my uptime record is 1 year 2 months and 2 weeks they don't believe me until i mention its a linux box. Productivity is up, data loss is at an all time low, IT reliability is up and more importantly i don't have to spend a good portion of my day attending to server crashes. All this would not have been possible if we'd had to fork out for M$ licenses for each server and for the software to run the specific operations.

    As a bonus i gained a huge amount of skill in linux configuration and maintenance which i've found i can apply, in principal, to non OSS systems when the need arises.
    anonymous
  • So Cy Harrild - i take it your systems haven't been upgraded since upgrading them would require you to bring them down - I think a few security vunerabilites have been found in the kernel since you last had them 'down' ;)
    anonymous
  • My MS servers - all 4 of them - have never been 'down' ever since I installed them - and with the latest patches - just need people that KNOW what they are doign at the helm. Leave computers to the experts!!
    anonymous
  • I'm ****uming the government is waiting for the overseas outsourcers they favour to provide OSS support before they do anything.

    While this attitude prevails we will never have a viable IT industry here
    anonymous