Home opinion-and-analysis Open Sauce A Win-Lin situation: moving a small office over to Linux

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Michael Pope is a pragmatic person by nature - a developer who, before he sets out on a task, takes sufficient care to create a soft-landing in case it is needed.


Hence, when he was asked by his employer to convert a small accounting firm from Windows to Linux, it is not surprising that his methods embodied his whole approach to things in general, and computing in particular.

Pope (below) runs the Melbourne Linux User Group, a LUG that caters more to hobbyist users than industry types, a cosy set of people who meet on the final Wednesday of the month for a talk and a drink; at times, they forget the formal talk and share their Linux experiences over a snifter or two.

The idea of moving the accounting firm to Linux was borne in the mind of Pope's employer after he himself had made the move. And this move was inspired by Pope who started using Linux for all his needs some 10 years ago.
Michael Pope
"I moved because of the development tools initially," Pope told iTWire. "In Windows, it gets difficult to obtain development tools and with Linux everything is there, easily available and the source is available too. It's a developer's dream."

Pope has a number of sensible pieces of advice for those who are contemplating a switchover - don't force a conversion; lead by example; and don't get caught up on saving money.

He is quick to point out that the cost savings of converting to Linux will be obvious after using it for a year. "The conversion itself will most likely cost money but in the end it will be more stable, faster and more efficient," he adds.

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Sam Varghese

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A professional journalist with decades of experience, Sam for nine years used DOS and then Windows, which led him to start experimenting with GNU/Linux in 1998. Since then he has written widely about the use of both free and open source software, and the people behind the code. His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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