> Thu, 08 May 2003 19:49:06 GMT
>> Large companies can save a substantial amount of money
>> by using open source software products, according to a
>> study published Wednesday by the Swiss consultancy
>> Soreon Research.
>> Companies with a $1.1 million budget for office
>> software can reduce their costs as much as 20 percent
>> by using OpenOffice software instead of Microsoft's
>> Office product, Soreon said in a statement. And those
>> running the open source Linux operating system instead
>> of Microsoft's Windows on their servers can save as
>> much as 30 percent.
>> For the full story:
>  I was under the impression that most of the
> businesses are small. $1.1M = 200 computers or so.
> (That's probably about $EMPLOYER's size.)
True, but most of those smaller companies are selling goods
or services to the big companies. If the big companies are
using OpenOffice instead of Microsoft Office, the smaller
companies will follow suit. Microsoft has understood this
for years, and has targeted the largest companies, knowing
that the smaller companies would have to follow to continue
doing business with the big boys.
Of course, those extra expenses were simply written into the
costs of the goods and services being provided. When money
was fast and free-flowing, and stocks were soaring, nobody
worried about a few extra pennies tacked onto each dollar
ordered. But when money got tight, and orders got scarce,
the price increases were harder to pass on, and the costs
had to be cut, but the staff was already pared to the bone.
Just about this point, Microsoft comes out with Windows XP,
onerous licensing terms, and has minimum orders that are
This study only covers a narrow spectrum of the savings, but
even then it's not too bad to discover that you can save 3/4
million for every 2000 workplace users by switching to Linux
>  An oddity: the advert above the article (for me) was
> for Microsoft Windows Server 2003, although another ad
> was from IBM. Talk about mixed messages.
I got one with Microsoft Windows, and the other was Oracle
9i. It makes sense, but it's probably a random placement.
Microsoft would probably want to rescue any vacillating
"defectors" with the "Do more with less" ad.
>  There's no hint in the article regarding whether to
> buy new equipment or try to reuse old. I'll admit that's
> probably outside of the study "radius".
Not terribly clear, but it appears that they are talking
about software changes only. If you added in hardware
upgrades and secondary expenses such as support contracts
and losses due to hacking and bugs, the savings would
probably be closer to $2 million for every 2000 users.
Unfortunately, these costs are very hard to document or predict.
>  Overall, not bad. Might need a little more meat in
> the details.
It would have been nice to have a link to the original
report, but my guess is that they are selling the report at
rates similar to those charged by Gartner, Forrester, and
other industrial research firms. And those who purchase are
still not permitted to republish the report.
Leading Open Source Advocate