All right, I know you Linux guys are going to blink a couple of times
and scratch your heads, wondering how I could even think to ask such a
thing, but why one Earth would you care how long the computer has been
running continously? I know mine has been on for a couple of months
(Win2000 professional) but I can't imagine keeping track of the number
of days, or even really caring if it got shut off for a while (it just
stays on because I'm sort of lazy, and I figure the cancer-research
screensaver can use it when I'm otherwise occupied). What are you
doing, trying to find the zillionth decimal place of PI with a 486 or
something equally odd?
Well, as I mentioned, one of mine is monitoring several dozen financial
service provider websites that our company has on the Internet. My
boss's boss's boss would get touchy if we didn't know something went
down because the monitoring boxes failed, because people wouldn't be
able to do things like buy houses and other kinda important stuff.
We're not keeping track of it, just run 'uptime' and it tells ya. Well,
on the one, I know it rolled over the 497 days thing twice, so I guess
I'm keeping track of it somewhat...
No, it's running a critical business function that can't just crash at
random times because it feels like it. Someone else mentioned a control
system at a steel mill, which would require literally tons of metal to
be reprocessed should it fail.
But, raw uptime isn't the primary reason, or even _a_ primary reason, to
switch to an OS. Just Not Breaking is damn nice once you get used to
I don't know of a single 9 year old kernel (linux, freebsd, openbsd,
aix, solaris, etc) that doesn't have security holes. These can be
minimized by ACLs, firewalls and other means, but they still have
multics. i worked on it for many years. certified to b2. another os/hardware
platform from the same company was certified at a2.
there has never been a security hole used against stratus computers.
just because you don't know of one doesn't mean there isn't one.
"The number of _discovered_ bugs in a system is always finite in number.
the number of UNDISCOVERED bugs, is, by definition, infinite in number."
I do know of *one* O/S without any bugs in it. TSEC 'orange book' certified
at the A1 level -- with the formal mathematical proof of correctness, and
the proof of implementation matching the design.
On Wed, 25 May 2005 13:42:22 -0700, Charles Spitzer
Not surprising. I should mention that the Linux box in question is
running 3 websites with thousands of hits a day, and a monitoring
application that watches our ecommerce sites, sends notifications, and
so on - so it's a busy little box, not just off in a corner building
uptime. (Not implying your clients' box is like that, not my point).
the longest one i personally encountered was one running a steel plant. if
the computer stopped, the plant had big problems because the line had to be
restarted, which involved having to remelt a lot of steel because it had
cooled too much.
another one was a rail road who had brick walled off one of our computers
into a room that had no other door. it was 3 years before they even found it
by tracing cables.
On Thu, 26 May 2005 12:16:53 -0700, Charles Spitzer
Yup, I had a Sparc 2 get walled into a non-room in a similar manner.
It just continued to do it's job, and I put a sign on the wall with a
reference to Edgar Allen Poe, a cask of amantillado, and the server in
question, so whoever took my place would have a hint where it was. I
should touch base with the current crew & see if they're still using
The whole Mac/Unix/Linux thing really torques me because those who
tout it so heavily never seem to consider that it is darn hard to come
up with commercial applications to accomplish real work on them. I
have 40 some apps on my Windows XP box, of which only 3-4 are
utilities. I use them all on a regular basis. They are all commercial
applications with support available. They all installed the first time
w/o problems and most have been upgraded w/o problems. I have been
running MS operating systems since 1986 on my personal computers at
home and have never had a virus. I buy cheap hardware from God only
knows where and plug it in and it works - every time.
I despise Windows for many reasons - security included - but it works
when you need to get work done - something I never found to be true
with Linux apps. And there is software out there for just about
anything you want to do - unlike either Linux/Unix or Mac.
If the Linux community would go after commercial software developers
so that there were some real applications available it might make some
inroads, but Open Office just doesn't cut it. Likewise if Apple were
to blow the box open so that I can slap in cheap off-shore upgrades
when I want to then open up their software licensing rules and re-work
that horrid user interface they would be worth a look. But for now, in
the real world of people who need to do lots of different tasks,
Windows XP is the clear winner in terms of usability and
It's about time for my semi-annual Linux trial, so this opinion is
subject to change if the conditions have changed.
"We need to make a sacrifice to the gods, find me a young virgin... oh, and
bring something to kill"
I think it just depends on your version of commercial. Been in hi-tech a
long time. UNIX had most of the PC apps long before a PC was around -- a
lot more expensive tis true... But cost per user is now in the cellar...
Been using MS since 1979 -- C-BASIC days. Used Seattle DOS -- oops I
mean MS DOS 1 (1981). Used Cybers, IBM, Honeywell, GE and Datapoint
before that. :-) Forgot the rest... :-( Too many...
Since many commercial mainframes /mini / grid PC/ systems have thousands
of users they are cheaper per user than your software.
Many would beg to differ. I have used mainframes, minis, PCs Linux,
Apple, CPM, Seattle DOS etc etc etc. What irritates me is when my
current system is not like the OS I just got used to. :-)
Think it might be comfort level. We switched here. There was pouting and
whining. Now nobody remembers we switched they are so similar in
function. Training was 10 minutes -- so go figger.
If I could get a CASE tool (one user) that I could afford personally we
would switch most systems.
Right now I am using XP -- but all but 2 systems are dual boot.
Wait for the secret (shhh) negotiations to end....
Again. In my experience it's what you are used to. :-)
Got Slackware, Linux and Suse here as well as XP.
Shut down our Win2000 server. Running Linux Mandrake 10 64 bit on AMD
Athlon now. Almost never reboot -- less I wanna change something. The
Windows server was a constant trial. Ate a _lot_ of my time. The Linux
server is boring. Nothing to do -- unless I wish to do something. It
just keeps working.
Good luck with the virgins. If you ever have a spare I'll head over and
set up the Linux for you.
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