posted on Dec, 12 2004 @ 11:13 AM
The Windows environment is NOT as unstable as popular opinion likes to think. For instance, I have a Windows XP Pro server at home that has only been
rebooted twice in the last 18 months (for patches). My Win2k3 server has only been rebooted once (again, when it was patched). My uptime experience
on a PROPERLY installed and deployed Windows server is 99%. I have NEVER had a windows machine I have installed and maintained compromised. Like
anything else, it’s important to know your environment in order to secure it.
The biggest mistake businesses make with Windows is that they assume because it is designed to do many different things that one physical box SHOULD
do all those things. If you treat windows more sanely, one box usually = one major task the O.S. is stable and pretty darn easy to manage. Active
Directory is clean and efficient.
Unix WAS the best O.S. before OSX and 2003, it is still the choice for really really big boxes but Linux is starting to take that market. Unix as an
Intranet O.S. is asking for a lot of headaches.
OSX: Apple has put a pretty interface over a Unix kernel. Neither of which are best of breed so where do they fit? They don’t. Just a cool device
for yuppies to buy.
A windows environment supplemented by some Linux devices (Proxy, DNS, and Firewall should be Linux, everything else Windows 2003 or XP). This gives
you the best mix.
COM was Microsoft’s worst decision ever and it haunts them to this day. UNIX / Linux and Mac OS do not manage backward compatibility well and that
haunts them even MORE.
Summary: Pick your O.S. based on your task, not on your emotional response.
I happen to work on SUN / Linux J2EE / ORACLE and Windows 2003 Server .NET SQL Server projects. I have to tell ya that so far the J2EE projects have
left a lot to be desired. Programmers spend WAY too much time doing simple things in J2EE. Yes, they can learn STRUTS, or BEA, or WebSphere…but they
have to re-learn things again and again for very little real payoff.
Windows shines for Intranet application development (and it’s market share is dominant in this arena). Linux / apache shines in the low-end web
hosting and embedded devices (which is again reflected in the market). Sun Solaris is DEAD, it just doesn’t know it yet.
Java is going starting to peak. IT departments are starting to see the work effort vs. results equation for this environment and realize it’s just
not paying off the way they expect it to. Once SUN goes bankrupt (and they will…faster that people think) then the only serious champions of Java
will be ORACLE and IBM. IBM is in bed with .NET as much as J2EE and ORACLE’s revenues are declining fast (they are the most expensive RDMS out there
and competitors are starting to catch up in feature / price and eat them alive).
Longhorn…hmmm…I love some of the things planned in Longhorn but I fear Microsoft’s ability to embrace and extend open standards and turn them into
closed standards. Still, Longhorn should push all of the O.S. makers to improve the browser / “Internet on the desktop” model. That is always a good
I still love to develop ISAPI kernel mods and Cold Fusion. Cold Fusion MX has me loving this environment again…I can do things in it 200-300% faster
than raw J2EE programmers can hope to accomplish. also MX is J2EE compliant as it build WAR files and produces Java Compiled Code.
.NET is fun to develop in and has a LOT of goodies. I think for complex applications it really blows J2EE out of the water, shame about only
supporting the buggy I.E. browser though.
Summary: Simpler is usually better. My #1 productivity environment right now is IIS, SQL and Cold Fusion MX…I can simply SCREAM in this environment.
I’m at least 3-4 times faster here than working in .NET and Raw J2EE.
Oracle is a PIECE OF CRAP for 99.9% of your projects. It’s way to much power / complexity to manage and the 0.1% of the time it is useful it’s
probably better to throw big iron at the problem. It’s expensive and finicky and for most projects it’s like sandblasting a soup cracker. I hate
trying to get Triggers and Stored Procedures stable in this environment (they’re NOT…don’t let anyone tell you otherwise).
SQL Server, along with MSDE (the FREE version of SQL Server), is a very attractive solution for small / medium / large projects. This is one area
where Microsoft does an AWESOME job and gets little credit. Say what you want of their O.S.’s but ever since they got this technology from Sybase
they have turned this product into my absolute favorite RDMS.
MySQL is, in my opnion, not ready for primetime yet. It’s cool for personal web sites but it is no-where as good as MSDE. (FYI: I use MySQL / PHP
for my site, so I’m not saying NOT to use this).
PostGre has it’s own problems but I think it might seriously challenge Oracle down the road. It is much more a RDBMS than MySQL (which is a flat file
system posing as a database).
Interbase has languished at Borland, which is sad…nice database system.
Sysbase was technologically ahead of it’s time and a nice RDBMS. They are waning now and will probably get bought out by someone.
Look for ORACLE to go down the same path SUN is going. Look for MySQL to fill a niche, low end, market. Look for SQL Server to continue to dominate
the Business Intranet Market.
Summary: Use SQL server for most stuff, keep an eye open to the open-source stuff.
Microsoft = Bad. Ok. I agree this company is just too aggressive. Let’s try to remember the times before Microsoft ok? Anyone trouble shoot
WordStar and try to find a custom printer driver back before the HAL? This company HAS done some excellent things for the industry, it’s just sick
now and needs a cure. That cure will come in declining sales. They will eventually become a much smaller company due to market forces about to act
against them (they have a ponzi scheme about to collapse on them due to how they have been allocating pay into stock options).
Apple = WORSE. Yes, worse. I remember when Apple was starting out. Think Microsoft is arrogant? You should remember when Jobs had the upper hand.
He turned us early developers away with his draconian marketing and developer support (oh…the LACK of developer support). People are kidding
themselves if they think Apple would be any better than Microsoft if they had won the OS War. They would be WORSE, much worse.
SUN = Arrogant AND stupid. They will be bankrupt soon. It’s amazing the infighting that’s going on over at that company.
LINUX = Ok ..not really a company but a movement. Pretty nice but this Open Software movement is about to hit a wall. Feature creep is starting to
bloat Linux’s kernel. As a stripped down O.S. this system rules. As a competitor to Microsoft it is not yet ready. I am impressed how well the
newer SUSE installs and runs but it’s still not ready for my mom to use.
IBM = Screwed the pooch with OS/2. They had a windows killer in their hands but failed to take advantage of it. Oh well, better they lost this
particular battle. We don’t need one massive company doing services, hardware AND the O.S. Talk about anti-trust. Also, please remember this
company LOST an anti-trust trial just before the Great PC Revolution.
Summary: Support multiple vendors, release / sponsor open source when it makes sense and don’t worry…market forces will soon give us another Microsoft