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Reader Feedback Friday: Confusion in Redmond and the Decline of Open Source

The apparent confusion at the mother ship over the phrase "Vista capable" came as a relief to Cori:

"How can I get in on the lawsuit? I have had software issues and have already replaced my original hard drive that came with the laptop. My husband, who is a senior program technical engineer for Coinstar, kept on telling me, 'I don't know what you're doing, but stop moving all your files around.' Of course, I'm not lame, even have 18 years of software sales experience, so I am not the culprit of all the software issues going on with the laptop.

"I ran across an article about this less than two months ago, which outlined the exact problems I was (and still am) experiencing. Who do I contact to see if I'm eligible to be included in the lawsuit? Your article was such a RELIEF to show my husband."

As for the lawsuit, Cori, we're not sure that we can help you there, but we're glad that we were able to provide a bit of relief. Thanks for your e-mail.

Greg chimed in with some interesting numbers on open source after our entry on how SMBs are sticking with Microsoft. He says that the desktop market isn't the only place where Microsoft is hammering its competitor:

"I always read open source articles with great interest. However, I find that there is some irony in how everyone seems to think that open source is growing in the server market. The last stats I saw for 2002 and 2006 for market share showed that Windows server market share had grown from in the 40 percent range to 75 percent by 2006. This was at the expense of Unix and Linux. I have not seen recent figures, but it certainly made me wonder whether Linux will survive past the niche that it is in.

"I also saw stats for Apache Web servers, which during the same time shrank in market share from 75 percent to somewhere around 40 percent. IIS in the same timeframe grew from 8 percent to 36 percent. All indications are that IIS will be the leading Web server before the end of next year. This does not include Windows servers that are running Apache but certainly shows the decrease in UNIX and Linux market share in the Web environment, which so happens to be the niche for a lot of Linux servers.

"Anyway, maybe Linux will grow one day. For now, I think Microsoft still rules the roost. I do think this shift in market share will also force Microsoft to look for revenue elsewhere. Watch ERP and competition with Google. Microsoft will focus heavily on these areas moving forward. I would be worried if I was trading in these environments."

Greg, we're not 100 percent sure where you got your numbers, of course, but we're inclined to believe you. And, as for ERP, we've been watching Dynamics for a while here, and we'll continue to keep an eye on it. Thanks for your e-mail.

Posted by Lee Pender on December 07, 2007 at 11:54 AM


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