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Thread: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

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    News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    Ideas include switching to Linux and turning off PCs at night.
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    Oh Crumbs.... Biscuit's Avatar
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    I think if the government did make the move to open source then the case study of it being done would be somethng looked at closely by more private sector companies. Might make MS start to think a bit more about their pricing!

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    Now with added Ruffus Dog Tattysnuc's Avatar
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    How about scrapping benchmarking pay, pensions, contracts etc that are in line with industry sytandards. Seems to me they're over staffed, and poorly kitted out. Thowing man power at a problem doesn't seem to be the most cost effective solution in the long term, and it brushes the problems with the infrastructure set up and technology utilisation under the carpet.

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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    I agree that quite a few should be fired, i'm a student, so have to go through student loans to get money, now my parents have been married for about 40years, and student finance keep asking for a divorce certificate after she's already rang up twice, also to top it off they're asking for the certificate to someone that we don't even know. Bless the public sector.

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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    I believe the government has looked at StarOffice (Open office) in the past. Without going to whole linux route, a threat to move away from MS office will atleast lower the price deal they get as without MS office there is little reason to stay on the MS platform.
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    Ah the good old open source arguement, ever tried to train millions of people on using a new OS, email, word processing and other replacements?

    Yeah you save massive money on the basic software it self, but then comes training and modification on the software and the costs to hire the staff to do that. Also dont even go into the increased cost of support after the change.

    There is a reasons why the Government uses main stream packages from Microsoft, one being its the most known to the public and there for less intensive to train new recruits and get productivity from them fast. Whats windows PC desktop share these days? 90%?

    Suggestions are just that until the maths and real costs are factored.

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    Senior Member usxhe190's Avatar
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    The only thing that is the biggset impediment is Microsoft Excel I believe. I don't think OpenOffice is quite up there in that area.

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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    Quote Originally Posted by Defiant View Post
    Ah the good old open source arguement, ever tried to train millions of people on using a new OS, email, word processing and other replacements?

    Yeah you save massive money on the basic software it self, but then comes training and modification on the software and the costs to hire the staff to do that. Also dont even go into the increased cost of support after the change.

    There is a reasons why the Government uses main stream packages from Microsoft, one being its the most known to the public and there for less intensive to train new recruits and get productivity from them fast. Whats windows PC desktop share these days? 90%?

    Suggestions are just that until the maths and real costs are factored.
    Yes, this is the "good old open source argument" - to which you've given the stock Microsoft reply!

    Joking aside, is moving someone from Office 2003 to OpenOffice any more difficult than moving them from Office 2003 to the UI abortion that is Office 2007? I've done the former at home, and the latter at work, and I'm productive sooner in OpenOffice. As for the "increased cost of support", again is there any proof that OO requires more support than Office2007/2010? Not any I've seen.

    And if you're talking about the graduate recruits, then there's a good chance that they've come from a university that's using OO. Only downside of this otherwise rosy picture is that I'd be the first to admit that OO Calc isn't a good replacement at the moment for Excel if you're into the advanced features.

    However, it's interesting that the article says "switching the entire public sector over to open-source software came up" which most seem to have assumed that means Desktop. Meanwhile, what about the thousands of Windows Server installations that could be quite easily (when compared to a desktop) migrated to Linux. Or, how about migrating Solaris servers (probably quite expensive now that Oracle's involved!) to Linux?

    Assuming you don't want the pain of desktop migrations there's individual apps - how about using Inkscape rather than Adobe Illustrator for example? Use Thunderbird rather than Outlook. Or, and this is relevant to me, use Firefox or Chrome rather than IE (especially version 6!)

    Remember the key thing about Open Source - all the file formats are also "out there". Which means it's nearly impossible for you to get caught in that trap where you're forced to payout for a poor app because you've got so much valuable data in it that you can't get out. So there would have been my suggestion - mandate that the government use non-proprietary file formats!

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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    Now, call me a cynic, but if someone can't suss how to use Open Office, they probably aren't very productive in their day to day work anyway (POSSIBLY excel-equivalent excluded)
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    At work, I have set up 16 linux machines for staff, they use openoffice, firefox and thunderbird. None of them have used linux before, they know nothing about unix however none of them have had any problems using the applications. A few minor points about gui customisation and they were away. Seems mad to spend 500-1000 pounds in Microsoft tax when we can get something as good for free.

    Ok some of microsofts shareing application are are not available, these has been the focus of the development work for the last few years, however most people do not need that and can live without it.
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    Quote Originally Posted by Shooty* View Post
    Now, call me a cynic, but if someone can't suss how to use Open Office, they probably aren't very productive in their day to day work anyway (POSSIBLY excel-equivalent excluded)
    That was what killed my very brief experience with Open Office. Most of them are fine, and reasonable alternatives, but Calc seemed to be pretty poor.

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    Seething Cauldron of Hatred TheAnimus's Avatar
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    Re: News - Treasury releases results of Spending Challenge poll

    Also lets not forget all the hardware which might not work (probably won't work on any 64bit, vista or later OS either!), all those admins who would have to be retrained (very expensively).

    At best they could hope finding one isolated branch of a department to cross over, and even then the fund and games involved in exchanging documents between the two might be quite high,.
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