Ghosting your machines costs TWICE the W2K OS price?
I just read a story on CNET that made my eyes pop. My first reaction
was "You GOTTA be kidding." But it seems to actually be the case.
Here is the story in a nutshell. URL is below.
Market researcher Gartner has issued a report that says confusing
and ornate contractual terms in Microsoft's licensing agreements
are forcing many corporate customers to buy two copies of Windows
2000 for the same computer or to invest in additional upgrade
Everyone has been using tools such as Ghost to wipe out the software
on hard disks of new computers and install their own "software image".
We do this too at Sunbelt, it's an OS plus a standardized desktop
with all the apps we have for end-users. And you only need to buy
one OS license for that workstation, because they are virtually
identical, right? Well, think again!
I'm baffled. Microsoft is telling customers it's not that simple.
The software that comes on their computers and the software that is
part of their software image are covered by separate license contracts.
Although they might be identical technically, customers cannot legally
replace one copy for another without incurring consequences.
If they want to replace the software that comes on the computer with
their software image, they have to buy all of the software twice.
Wiping off the software on the computer also voids any obligation on
the part of the PC manufacturer to provide technical support.
Technical support can be had from Microsoft, but at a cost of $375
per incident, according to Gartner.
The scenario does not apply to all corporate customers or all buying
situations, but it does affect a large population. Business customers
with fewer than 10,000 employees that subscribe to Microsoft's Select
licensing plan can be affected, according to Gartner. Microsoft hotly
denies this contention and says the problem occurs because the two
Windows versions--the one that came with the PC and the one added later
--cannot be considered the same. I respectfully disagree. That is
basically nonsense, and I'm sure something lawyers cooked up.
Ultimately corporate buyers are responsible and have to take action
to avoid being caught in a licensing violation.
HOW TO SOLVE THIS?
CNET thinks the following: "One option is to receive new PCs without
any operating system and use Microsoft's Select media to create custom
software images, although this could prove more costly than getting
Windows from the system manufacturer. In this situation, the customer
would pay only Microsoft for the cost of Windows and not the PC maker
Another option is to use Windows software provided by the PC maker to
create the custom software build. A third workaround is to have the PC
maker load the custom software images at the factory, but this adds $25
to $35 per system".
CNET did not propose a fourth solution that I would suggest. Get your
Purchasing Office to talk to your Legal Department, and have both of
them communicate their discontent to Bill Landefeld, Microsoft's general
manager for pricing and licensing. You all know me by now, I'm a fairly
easy going kinda guy, and relatively tolerant. But in this case I'm
saying: MICROSOFT, GIVE ME A BREAK !
Here is the CNET article:
Free IBM Redbook on Tuning NT/2000 Performance
IBM just published the 2nd edition of their Windows NT and W2K
Performance book. Just like the 1st edition, a complete 6.8MB PDF
of the entire 600-page book is freely downloadable from the IBM Web
site (URL below). You can also buy it online as a regular book,
(list $49.99) via Amazon or other booksellers if your laser printer
is going to choke on such a big PDF as mine did last week.
When I announced the first edition of this book back in December 1998,
IBM got 18,000 hits right after. Looks like you guys would be interested
in hearing about the new edition. It's been updated to include the
latest info on tuning Windows 2000, tuning IBM Netfinity hardware and
tuning some of the major NT/2000 server applications.
IBM sent me a copy for my library, and this is worth giving your address
info and email address to them. (You have to register to get access to
it). Check out:
http://www.redbooks.ibm.com ISBN: 0-13-040612-0
Rebels Pledge To Keep NT 4.0 Certification Alive
Client Server News reported yesterday that Lanop (a 13-year
old IT training company offering Cisco, Novell and MS courses)
decided to create independent certification called NT Certified
Independent Professional: NTCIP.
They are supported by a consortium of independent training
professionals, and plan to keep NT4.0 certification alive after
MS will no longer offer NT4 Exam tests December 31-st 2000.
All MCSE Certs expire a year after that date. By that time
MS would like all MCSE's to have upgraded to the new W2K certs
to meet the need for W2K certified engineers.
It is obvious that a whole bunch of MCSE's are very unhappy with
this and say that MS does this to forcefeed migration to W2K
in a faster pace. And a lot of people have spent thousands of
dollars out of their own pocket to get certified. Those certs
will be void and that's an unhappy scene. The good news is that
current MCSE's will be grandfathered into the new certification
if they can supply the documentation.
Lanop claims there will be sufficient demand for NT 4 MCSE's
for quite a while and that W2K migration is not going to go
as fast as MS thinks it will. John Goodfriend is Lanop's
head honcho and said: "Many companies upgraded to NT 4.0 in
1999 because of the Y2K scare and they're not about to foot
the bill for another upgrade until they've gotten their money's
worth out of the NT 4.0 upgrades".
Well, there is something to say for that. We just started our
W2K preps in Sunbelt and this _is_ the mother of all migrations.
Not something we are particularly looking forward to. NT has been
running pretty well for us in the last few years. We have a file
server that gets rebooted maybe twice per year.
Lanop claims it has gotten the agreement of testing houses Sylvan
Prometric and Virtual University Enterprises (VUE) to run their
rebel exams. Tests are already being assembled, and will be very
similar to the existing MCSE exams, and perhaps even a bit more
difficult. The first tests will only be offered Jan 1, 2001 and
will cost the same 100 bucks.
Well I can tell you that Microsoft ain't gonna like this one,
and perhaps they'll even sue, but if I can make a suggestion
to them, I'd say 'leave this puppy alone'.
Here's the rebel base: