Help is good, but...

Story: Open Letter to readers from Tom Adelstein about JDShelp.orgTotal Replies: 7
Author Content

Jul 12, 2004
12:27 PM EDT
how many of us LXer readers are using JDS? I don't know nothing about it, so how could I offer adequate help?

I have this faint feeling that using SUSE Linux 9.1 Professional is not going to be much good in the "help JDS department".

Jul 12, 2004
1:19 PM EDT
The letter was not meant to recruit you to help with the site. If you use SuSE thought, then you would understand that JDS uses the SUSE enterprise Linux build and it has a gnome 2.2-2.4 desktop. It still uses Yast2 and installs like SuSE.

That's still not the point. I've known Dave since 1999 and I know he's about community. So, I thought this was a good place to do an open letter. Since you say you don't know about JDS, that's really OK - but this letter is here to inform you that JDS is massively popular. In the first three weeks of their release in December of last year, they sold over a million copies, turned a profit and paid for all their R&D and development costs.

If someone knows you are a Linux guy and says have you heard of this -- you have. You might also find it interesting that and StarOffice together now have 19.6% of the office productivity market.

Manu of the people we meet on the JDS forum have come over from Microsoft and then did it after they started using and/or Mozilla on Microsoft. That gave them a comfort level to try JDS.

I've installed JDS on some developers boxes that were using Windows XP and they were very grateful. They were Java developers who used JBOSS on Linux servers but hadn't found a desktop they liked until JDS. It surprised them to see they had an enterprise Linux desktop that could use to run their development software.

If we can help them make the transition, then I get a lot of satisfaction out of that.

Jul 12, 2004
3:48 PM EDT
A million copies? How many of those are actually in use? How many copies of the latest version of Solaris x86 have been sold and how many are in use? ~20% running OpenOffice/StarOffice? Not that I wouldn't mind those numbers being true I just find them hard to believe. I would be very interested in knowing where these numbers come from.

Even so, recent statements by Sun is enough reason for me to not touch JDS with a 10 foot pole. If they are really turning pro-Linux then I say give up some credit where credit is due rather than trying to hide it and blast other great contributors. The only Linux statements I have seen coming from Sun lately have been a Red Hat bash fest. Unlike Sun, Red Hat is actually a very good member of the Linux community. I do appreciate so it's not like I don't like everything Sun. I also have many large Sun servers running Solaris but I have to tell you that lately the feelings are that we need to replace them with Linux wherever possible, and that would not be JDS. We also run a lot of Red Hat/Oracle servers. It's not like I'm 100% pro Red Hat either, I also run Debian on older Sparc and Alpha boxes, at least until they die.

Jul 12, 2004
6:17 PM EDT
I forget the name of the General who Patton rescued but when the Nazi's asked him to surrender during the Battle of the Bulge, he replied "Nuts".

I'm willing to answer questions and provide support for my answers, but I wonder if anything would ever satisfy you. You seem very committed to a position and knowledge based on media information misquotes and your own bias.

You basically called me a liar. But, I'm not a liar and the figures exist to prove up the number of sales and percentage of market I quoted.

In fact, they were mentioned by the main stream press today!

Since you choose to insult I won't dignify your behavior with an more answers.

This message was edited Jul 12, 2004 9:26 PM

Jul 12, 2004
6:33 PM EDT
Excuse me? How did I insult you? I just asked where the numbers came from because I don't usually put numbers out without backing them up with a reference (which still hasn't been provided BTW). Honestly, I am just looking for truth. Apparently I type much harsher sounding than I think. And how would me saying that I wouldn't touch JDS be insulting? If it makes you feel any better I also will never touch Lindows. :) I am very happy with what I use. I use a Linux based distro (the one I am typing this in is not even one that has been mentioned). If I offended you I am sorry. This message was edited Jul 12, 2004 10:38 PM

Jul 12, 2004
7:04 PM EDT
This article:

talks about the fact that 40 million copies of staroffice/ have been sold - that's also discounting because use is measured on downloads and Sun went with a lower number than downloads.

This article:

talks about the original announcement in China. Other articles discuss the implementation occurring in the first week of June. Sun has also has large deployments in several other countries. In the US and Canada major deals exist, for example Ontario at 2.5 million.

Sun sells Star Office through distributors in China, Korea and Japan as Star Suite. In Europe they sell through different distributors. In South America they sell through Sun Products -- biggest market is Brazil.

This message was edited Jul 12, 2004 10:08 PM This message was edited Jul 12, 2004 10:09 PM

Jul 12, 2004
7:18 PM EDT
A sincere thanks for posting supporting links. That helps considerably although I believe it verifies that your original post was in error. The article talks about a million copies of StarOffice being sold, not a million copies of JDS. It also doesn't specifically say that 40 million copies of StarOffice have been sold. It specifically says that is how many have been distributed with the addition of the 1 million new copies that have been sold. I can see how that could easily be implied though, it would be nice to see this clearly. At any rate, 40 million distributed is nothing to sneeze at, along with the many that have surely been passed around behind the curtains. I would surely agree that Star/OpenOffice is "one of the most popular" office suits.

I can't get to the article on the Mercury News site without registering (which I'm not going to do). Maybe the Mercury news article verifies that JDS is "massively popular". I'm not quite sure that I agree that making a deal with the Chinese government automatically makes it massively popular. The first article didn't mention any numbers. I do recall seeing this announcement and I couldn't help but wonder why the Chinese government would choose JDS over their own Red Flag Linux. That one still puzzles me. Again, I'm *not* trying to call you a liar, I just want to see the sources. I also said that I *hope* that is true about the ~20% for Star/OpenOffice. Was that in the mercury article or is 40 million about ~20% of office app users? I just didn't see that number explained.

My entire family uses OpenOffice on Linux ever since Sun bought Star Division, opened it up and released it as (thank you Sun!) and now my shop has converted partially to it ("my shop" being one small shop in a very large company who actually deals directly with Ballmer for their M$ software, and yes I have to take two showers every time I come home from work) but outside of that I don't really know anyone that uses it. You can't really figure how many are actually in use though as you don't know how many have been passed around in Linux distros and you don't know how many people downloaded it just to check it out and then end up not using it. I can't think of any way to put a number on actual copies in use just like you can't put a number on actual copies of Linux distributions in use. I would assume that most of the 1 million sold would be used, and then there are people like me who use it and didn't download it directly. Again, I would like to see that number go to 100%, and soon.

If someone wants to pay Sun $100/yr per seat for JDS by all means, more power to them. They won't need my help anyway because that's what they are paying Sun for, right? I don't know why we waste $2,000 per RHAS when nobody ever calls Red Hat for support on anything anyway. We're more than capable of solving any problem that comes up, and we always do, thanks mostly to the GPL and having the source. But spending the 2 grand per server is a "corporate" kind of decision. I don't really mind it though, Red Hat does a lot for Linux and other open source projects and if my company can afford to pay them then great. It keeps them doing what they are doing.

Again, I apologize if I offended you personally, that wasn't the intention. I think most of us Linux users like to see hard numbers with supporting data rather than going on blind faith. Forgive me if I am somewhat skeptical considering that you will benefit from the success of JDS (your JDS book). I can see how this could create "bias" on your part. I really have no reason to be biased. I don't stand to profit from any distro doing better than another. Seeing hard numbers will help everyone. These are the kinds of questions I would like to run by any news article I see posting numbers. Most don't give you the benefit for public feedback though. I hope you understand and I thank you for bearing (bantering) with me. This message was edited Jul 13, 2004 1:32 AM

Jul 13, 2004
12:16 PM EDT
I'm surprised you didn't get the second article opened - I think you would have seen that wasn't a misquote.

Sun's McNealy announces Linux deal with Chinese government

By Dean Takahashi

Mercury News

Sun Microsystems Chief Executive Scott McNealy always seemed like he was tilting at windmills when he said Sun would challenge Microsoft's dominance on the desktop computer.

But McNealy announced today that the Chinese government has pledged to deploy a million computers in the next year using Sun's Linux desktop software. The cost: $50 per license for Sun's desktop software, which includes its Star Office 7.0 productivity program that is a clone of Microsoft's Office suite. Microsoft Office can cost more than $400 a copy.

The China Standard Software Co., a consortium of government-funded companies, selected Sun as its preferred technology partner to deploy Linux-based desktops. The deal is part of China's deliberate policy to diversify away from Microsoft. Other governments in Europe and Asia have embraced a similar strategy, as has the state of Massachusetts. China has pledged to deploy 200 million copies of open standards-based desktop software.

That's just one of many.

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