50 Things You Need to Know About Ubuntu (50-41)
Yes, The VAR Guy is attending the 2007 UbuntuLive in Portland, Oregon. He’s already noticed several Ubuntu Linux trends that could potentially benefit solutions providers and their customers. So, it’s the perfect opportunity for a big countdown: 50 things you need to know about Ubuntu. Here are items 50-41, with more to follow soon…
50. Big Numbers: Ubuntu now has an installed base of roughly 6 million and 12 million users, according to Canonical CEO Mark Shuttleworth.
49. Small Business Server: Canonical is preparing an Ubuntu small business server. Target for delivery: Apparently within 12 months or sooner. Hmmm. Small Linux server providers like Collax and Xandros could find themselves competing with a rather muscular cousin real soon.
48. Managed Services: Canonical expects to launch a managed services platform that will help solutions providers remotely manage and support Ubuntu servers. Memo to Canonical: Be sure to reach out to Autotask, ConnectWise, Kaseya, Level Platforms, N-able and Silverback Technologies.
47. Sun Is Serious: The VAR Guy ran into two Sun officials (Terri Molini, corporate communications; Barton George, group manager for Free and Open Source Software) during the keynote sessions. For more on Sun’s commitment to open source and Ubuntu, check out George’s blog (http://www.blogs.sun.com/barton808).
46. So Is Novell: During lunch, The VAR Guy connected with Crispin Cowan, director of software engineering and security architect for SuSE Linux. Cowan is discussing Ubuntu security strategies as the event, indicating that Novell realizes there’s more to open source than SuSE Linux. That’s refreshing. Too bad Red Hat didn’t join this party as well.
45. Students Are Embracing Ubuntu: During several case studies, professors, teachers and IT managers described how Ubuntu is emerging as a solution in schools across California, Oregon, Maine and other states. The real challenge is getting teachers to embrace the new open source approach, many speakers noted.
44. Ubuntu Is Going Mobile: Shuttleworth noted that Ubuntu will land on Internet-enabled mobile devices over the next year or so — but not necessarily smart phones. Stay tuned. Canonical’s work with Intel should produce some mobile Ubuntu code for hardware makers this fall.
43. Ubuntu Means Digital Inclusion: A big theme at the event involved getting low-cost PCs — including Intel 386-based systems with a scant 128MB of RAM — to emerging markets. One prime example: Richard Weideman of Canonical described how Georgia (the country, not the state) has 1 computer per 200 students, and Internet penetration is only 6 or 7 percent. A nationwide push to standardize schools on Ubuntu will potential deliver 1 computer per 20 students by next year.
42. EMC Is Curious: The VAR Guy ran into an EMC employee during lunch. Sounds like EMC is exploring how to leverage Ubuntu. The purpose: Coordinating massive PDF files within storage management systems.
41. Success Doesn’t Mean Arrogance: Canonical founder and Ubuntu leader Mark Shuttleworth is mixing with attendees and chatting in the hallways. No handlers. No staff members running interference for him. Let’s hope Shuttleworth stays this approachable as Ubuntu grows.