The Linux share of computers around the world is increasing, and people are beginning to notice that there are more operating systems than just “Microsoft” and “Apple”. My personal tendency is toward Linux, mostly because, unlike Windows, it doesn’t treat you like an idiot. The best thing about it? It’s free. Anyhow, it seems that the French national police have discovered that they can cut their IT costs by an amazing 70% simply by making the switch from Windows to Linux.
According to the article:
Until 2004, a large part of the IT budget was spent on software licences — between 12,000 and 15,000 licenses each year. In 2004, an accountant in the Gendarmerie Nationale tried OpenOffice and, after finding it a surprisingly competent replacement for its paid counterpart, started pushing for it to be adopted within the organization instead of Microsoft Office.
After a while, the police force completely switched over to OpenOffice for all their office needs along with adopting Thunderbird for email and Firefox for browsing. The switch was easy and required little to no training since the open source apps had a similar interface to the paid ones.
In 2007, they decided to go one step further and switch to an open operating system.
My personal recommendation is that you at the VERY least go take a look at what the fuss is all about. If you head over to the Ubuntu website, you can ask them to ship you a free Ubuntu Linux CD. Not a trial version, but a full, working operating system. Best thing? You can try it before you install it and see if you like it.
[Link: Ubuntu Linux]