Linux Still Doesn't Make It on the Desktop
Back in the mid-’90s, my research focused on desktop operating systems. There was a plethora of options for IT organizations, with Mac OS, Windows in the guise of NT and 95, and OS/2 Warp all vying for the attention of IT managers. Even Unix workstation vendors had thoughts of moving beyond scientific and engineering applications to mainstream knowledge worker desktops.
But by the late ’90s, it felt as if I was doing the color commentary for a horse race whose leader was out in front by 10 furlongs. Still, while it was clear to many that Microsoft was going to dominate the desktop, that didn’t stop some in IT from looking for alternatives.
Then a dark horse emerged. Many people now believe that Linux represents a viable alternative. Today, with mainstream hardware vendors like Dell offering Linux installations and some folks thinking a major shift is about to happen, it’s time to take another look at Linux on the desktop.
Unfortunately, despite major strides in recent years — notably the Ubuntu release — Linux still isn’t viable for most end users or organizations.