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On Tue, 13 Oct 2009, Matthew Macdonald-Wallace wrote:
Quoting Gordon Henderson <gordon+dcglug@xxxxxxxxxx>:And I also have the opportunity to tout Linux in a local project too - our town Information Centre is creating a museum and "Family History Room" with PCs/Internet access for public use and as the one who'll be managing it, I'm really tempted to buy commercial PCs with Win7 installed, and make them dual-boot with Linux the default OS. Then see how the punters get on. I'm not overly worried that I'm still contributing to the Redmond empire - the PCs I'm looking at are under £400 inc vat and the MS tax, although I will be recycling 1 or 2 older ones which already have XP licenses on.Have you thought of using X2GO or LTSP instead? The server would probably cost about £800 and the clients can costs as little as 100EUR for two! I've found that if you set up Linux to look and feel like windows, most people don't realise the difference as long as they can watch youtube and listen to music (MP3s).
What server? (And why would I pay £800 for one when I can make one for £400?)
The people using these PCs will not be looking at youtube, nor listening to mp3's, etc. (The PCs won't have speakers) They're their for research - trawling through the census data, looking for family members, local history, etc. And having watched people do this in the past, we absolutely need the principle of least surprise. Turn a PC on, find the web browser and off they'll go.
There won't be a central server here, just 3-4 PCs on a shared Internet connection along with a networked printer. I've shown enough people my xfce4 setup on my laptop to be happy to roll that out for them. It's familiar enough for most people, and I can auto-reset (wipe/restore) the user account on a logout/reboot, so no-ones going to get any "surprises" when looking at browser history... We may offer user accounts to allow some people to store some data, but in that case, I'll just nomiate one of the PCs as a NIS master and NFS server.
Another almost local project is a customer of mine - a charity - who're looking at a new database system for their shops, etc. I'm trying to push them OS, but it would mean I'd have to write their database for them - however I may throw it to the floor if I don't have the time - there won't be much money in it though.. I'mm meeting them this week to talk about it.Have a look at some of the FLOSS software that's already out there such as Adempiere/Compiere, openbravo and ofbiz.apache.org - they may well do what you need them to already.
Yes, they might. But their application is nothing more than a simple card-index style database with a bit of schedulling and booking for driver pick-ups and deliverys, php/mysql/apache will be fine for a bit of work to create it all. They already have a Linux server - which is bit old admittedly, but I'm trying to get them to use a hosted solution (for multi-site access) - they have 5 sites and although I'm building a VPN over all sites, putting the database remote would be a sensible thing for them in this case.
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