|SUBJECT ||Subject: [hangout] Windows takes on multiple roles
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Subject: [hangout] Windows takes on multiple roles
Date: Mon, 26 Jul 2004 01:10:34 +0100 (BST)
List: New Yorker GNU Linux Scene
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Windows takes on multiple roles
As IT Weekrevealed
recently, Microsoft is working to make Windows run Linux software, and
before time. Windows and Linux would be much more useful platforms if
could each run software originally written for the other.
Now let's talk about Longhorn. Longhorn is the codename for the next
version of Windows, currently slated for delivery in 2008. Though
mentioned the possibility of a 3D graphical user interface, and a new
database-like file-system, it has actually made no promises about what
included in Longhorn.
Many people note that 2008 is so far away that without an excellent
ball, nobody could predict what the update will contain. But one thing
for certain about Longhorn is that it will be able to run Linux software.
Such a move would provide Microsoft with some excellent ammunition to
business from companies looking to deploy Linux, and those looking to
Unix-based Risc systems with Unix based-x86 ones. If Microsoft wants
more server software, adding this capability to Windows would be a
fine way of
In fact, the new "server roles" installation technique due for
with Longhorn is perhaps the only other certainty about Longhorn. This
Microsoft's new approach to software deployment. Rather than install
all at once, the server roles approach allows IT staff to tell the
program exactly what a particular server will be doing, so the
installs the software needed for that task.
IT Weekidentified the drawbacks of Windows installing unnecessary
software last year in our review
of Samba 3, which outperformed Windows as a file server in our tests.
of Microsoft's explanation was that Samba and Linux combined require
resources than Windows.
I talked this over with the guys in Microsoft HQ, and I'm sure I
the tears hitting their desk as they realised that an operating system
bloated with optional extras was doomed to lose ground against
designed for a single purpose.
In instances like this it is clear that less really is more.
Anyhow, server roles would also provide an easy way to install
Services for Unix (SFU). This is important because in its current
form, SFU is
quite tricky to install. For example, you either need a working NIS
server or a
few files containing user names and encrypted passwords to be present
c:\ drive. These things are easy enough for Linux administrators to
but they can form an impossible barrier to Windows administrators
their first installation of SFU.
A server roles approach would reduce the resources required by an SFU
system, but more to the point it would provide a way for customers to
Microsoft Unix servers that did not need to be weighed down by
software, such as Internet Explorer or other unnecessary Windows
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