TDF On Munich

“According to the report, only a minor percentage of users (between 18% and 28%, based on different applications) had severe issues related to software, which could be solved by migrating these users to Windows and MS Office.
 
Incidentally, 15% of users acknowledged severe issues related to MS Office.
 
In fact, the Accenture report suggests decoupling the operating system and application to reduce dependencies at client level. To ensure this, both Windows and LiMux should be deployed in a basic configuration, which includes operating systems as well as applications, such as LibreOffice, calendar and e-mail, required by all units and self-service providers. The basic configuration should be extended depending on the application.
 
In spite of the suggestions, on Wednesday, February 15, Munich City Council will discuss a proposal – filed by a minority of city councillors – to install Windows 10 and MS Office 2016 on all workstations by 2020. This would cost taxpayers close to 90 million euro over the next six years, with a 35% aggravation over the 66 million euro figure suggested by Accenture.
 
In addition, according to estimates provided by Green Party councillors, another 15 million euros should be spent to replace or upgrade PCs which are perfect for a small footprint operating system such as Linux, but cannot support even a Windows 10 basic configuration.”
 
See Statement by The Document Foundation about the upcoming discussion at the City of Munich to step back to Windows and MS Office
Sometimes it pays to wait for the real story. The alarming news we’ve heard is only the tip of the iceberg. In the details from TDF we find Munich’s fearless leaders have offered voluminous evidence which doesn’t support their conclusion. They’ve offered a recipe to spend a huge amount of money for zero benefit.

Beware politicians promising solutions to nonexistent problems. Read TDF’s post. Read the report from Accenture, M$’s “partner”. Even Accenture doesn’t believe the politicians’ solution. Monopoly is never the solution to diverse problems. Accenture advocates using web-applications. That provides independence from the OS and GNU/Linux would work for them. Sigh. Politics, the game that never ends.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.

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33 Responses to TDF On Munich

  1. oiaohm says:

    And, equally clearly, it’s not remotely as important a part of day-to-day operations in the activities of other German, or European, or indeed you can pick anywhere at all in the world, Municipalities. Because Munich is a special snowflake, isn’t it?
    DrLoser lets look under the hood we are going to compare Munich to France, Malaysia, Brazil in government Linux usage and just for fun school district 73 in Canada. Please remember the 3 government I am looking for Linux deployments make Munich look small fry. I have put district 73 in to be more fair.

    Everyone bar Munich when deploying Linux uses DRBL.

    Refresh hardware does not mean dumping all the hardware. Munich has been installing Linux as if you are installing windows on a local hard-drive. Businesses turn there computer after about every 6 years when they are doing this because hard-drives become unstable. So with France, Malaysia and Brazil when machine gets to 7 years old its converted to a DRBL machine also while at it given a good clean. Of course district 73 is fairly much obeying the same rules. You have also reduced the number of parts that need to work on that motherboard. So sata/ide controller stopping working is no longer a problem.

    Next France, Malaysia and Brazil all use appimage for deploying applications that they need latest versions of. This means they can run multi versions of Linux without having major hell so able to support their complete pool of hardware without major issues. District 73 has a policy of when a machine no longer support the distribution they want to run its goes for scrap metal. So two working solutions.

    Go watch the Debian conference video and cringe. Custom patching a distribution to support you hardware with no upstream patches that have not been heavily tested kind reads this solution is going to have issues. This Munich IT personal custom patching stuff was written about in why to migrate to LiMux because before LiMux they were custom patching Windows XP applications so they would run on NT4 with equal levels of creating unstable results.

    On incompatible printers everyone bar Munich has the same policy of scrap and replace. Of course Munich task the path of custom patch in support. Custom patching printer drivers is what they did with NT4 as well.

    The reality is anyone who understand the problems. Munich leaving Linux so its not an example to follow by those attempting would be a good thing. So that people look at what the ones who have done Linux migrations that work and follow those leads. If Munich stays with Linux they need strict rules against custom patching and proper hardware disposal polices and proper distribution independent application deployment.

    DrLoser all the other examples colour printing and massive level of complexity stuff works.

    The reality here is Munich has machines older than what district 73 would run.

    Munich is a special snowflake of totally strange policies when compared to all the Linux Migrations that work. With the level of design faults it a miracle its lasted this long. Remember all the others can have a new version of Libreoffice deployed in a few weeks. Munich 18 months if you are lucky. That number alone says broken processes.

    Munich was a special snowflake of stupid when they were running Windows NT4 and Windows 2000. Migrating to LiMux did not stop them being a special snowflake of stupid. So exactly how is migrating to Windows 10 going to stop them being a special snowflake of stupid.

    I notice that Douglas has successfully weaned you off your spurious cites
    It was Douglas who started me doing that in the first place with his spurious cites that he has not stopped doing DrLoser funny how you focus on me and totally ignore what Douglas does. Also you use to do it as well. I was not first doing it.

  2. DrLoser says:

    For many years paperlessness has been a goal of IT and I achieved it.

    By choosing a technology that doesn’t actually have the ability to print in color?

    Bravo!

    Eensy weensy teeny little problem, though.

    Pretty much every IT drone in any municipality you care to mention needs to print to paper. And yes, printing in color is not an optional extra in these cases.

    You lose, Bob. Your debating point is trashed.

  3. DrLoser ranted, “Robert, using experience that only you, with forty years of etc, can bring to the table.”

    For many years paperlessness has been a goal of IT and I achieved it. In the north, freight for paper can be a greater expense than buying the paper. Using monitors you already have for other purposes instead of paper is proper use of IT. Only teachers who don’t have enough monitors or who need to export paper outside of class need paper. I had one monitor per student in my lab. I’m sure you appreciate the efficiencies that brings. I would have been very foolish and wasteful to have ignored that resource just to waste paper.

  4. DrLoser says:

    I did not need colour printing because I had a bunch of colour monitors in class and the lab, and a projector.

    I do believe you have solved all of Munich’s problems right here, Robert, using experience that only you, with forty years of etc, can bring to the table.

    Munich IT Drone: Lawks a lawdy, my bottom’s on fire! My boss needs me to print out a presentation involving several pages in color!
    Wise And Irrefutably Ancient Manitoban: Debian to the rescue! Here, I’ve used the handy Travel Applet to show you a route to Easterville. Apparently the best one goes through an island in the Pacific, not sure why, but here! It solves your problem! All you have to do is to go to the Easterville lab and borrow their projector!
    Munich IT Drone: I don’t see how that would help.
    Wise And Irrefutably Ancient Manitoban: They have a projector that works IN COLOR!
    Munich IT Drone: But I need a twenty page A4 document in color.
    Wise And Irrefutably Ancient Manitoban: You’re not thinking Freely. Color is nothing but a stream of bits. Bits are Free! All you need to do is to project the twenty pages onto a wall in Easterville, and use your mobile phone to take photographs!
    Munich IT Drone: But I don’t want photographs! I want A4 printing!
    Wise And Irrefutably Ancient Manitoban: We’re almost done. On your way back, you drop into an Internet Café. You download your color photographs to the thin client. You dial up a suitable server, say Beast, and upload those photographs (in a suitably Free format.) You leave the Internet Café and go to a print shop, possibly on Easter Island, because as I say you will be forced to stop off at Easter Island, and you ask them whether they can print PS files — don’t worry about CMYK, you won’t get that, but you’ll at least get something vaguely colourful. Then you phone me, I convert your phone pictures to PS, and Job Done!
    Munich IT Drone: I think I’d rather just buy a system that does color printing out the box.
    Wise And Irrefutably Ancient Manitoban: Suit yourself. Clearly you are not considering the Awful Expense of using TOOS with the EULA From Hell …

  5. DrLoser says:

    Like are that using disc-less for security in any area.

    Clearly this is an important part of day-to-day operations in the activities of the Munich Municipality, Fifi. So clearly that you have chosen to highlight it.

    And, equally clearly, it’s not remotely as important a part of day-to-day operations in the activities of other German, or European, or indeed you can pick anywhere at all in the world, Municipalities. Because Munich is a special snowflake, isn’t it?

    Then again, I have a different theory:

    You’re a total doofus, Fifi. You’ll spew any old crap that bubbles up to the surface of what we can inadequately describe as “your brain.”

    I notice that Douglas has successfully weaned you off your spurious cites, btw. What’s the matter, you can’t cope with Dougie forensically ripping them apart?

  6. The Wiz wrote, “the days of business offices being forced to use a sub par solution are coming to a close”.

    Nope. This is a study/plan and it will review what is still true, no amount of money can deliver freedom in IT with TOOS. The EULA from Hell is the antithesis of freedom. At the very least, the cost of dozens of server-licences and thousands of client licences will remind Munich why they went with GNU/Linux in the first place. The decision made in 2003/4 was valid then and it’s still valid today. Today, they probably have to refresh their hardware in any event. The cost of refreshing the hardware and paying M$ on top of that is an objective measure of the cost of freedom to use the hardware Munich owns. It’s like Trump and Obamacare. When push comes to shove, the GOP is finding it necessary to modify Obamacare, not repeal it. The system Munich has works but can always be improved. Paying M$ a bundle is not an improvement.

  7. Wizard Emeritus says:

    “Examples in other areas show clearly once it dug into the personal getting them to change is a lot harder than it first seams.”

    So Munich is stuck with LiMux, eh. I don’t think so. Like any large project, it will take time and planning. The important thing is the process has been started, and the days of business offices being forced to use a sub par solution are coming to a close.

  8. oiaohm says:

    Basically the Microsoft guys have always taken the point of view the only thing keeping Munich Linux was political backing. Examples in other areas show clearly once it dug into the personal getting them to change is a lot harder than it first seams.

    So the same cat fights to removing Windows instances will happen all over again as they attempt to remove Linux and Libreoffice. Like are that using disc-less for security in any area. Something that licenses with windows is a total pain to-do. So there are things that Linux is good at. The old IBM recommendation is 20-80 split either way. So considering a 100 percent conversion either way is going to run into hell once staff have got use to the unique differences both offer.

  9. oiaohm says:

    Wizard Emeritus the loss of political cover by NZ case in the schools did not reverse the every school. You still find schools in NZ that are 100 percent Linux even that the political system says schools should have Windows Desktop deployed.

    I more suspect blended will be the outcome. History of long term Linux deployments returning to pure Windows says normally if the deployment has lasted less than 2 years if it lasted more than 3 years a percentage will still be Linux 8 years latter with no signs of changing. So it basically wishful thinking that the Linux desktop will have been 100 percent failure. So the question will be what the final blend ratio ends up being.

  10. Wizard Emeritus says:

    “At this stage its still Munich might. Not that they absolutely will. ”

    Once Linux lost its political cover, the die was cast sir. It will be time to do it correctly, and it will result in a blend of systems. But over time I suspect that Munich’s desktop project will once again become windows based, especially as the obsolete junk desktops are cleared out to the trash where the long ago belonged.

  11. The Wiz wrote, “The NeckBeards and politicials who rammed through LiMux in Munich Broke what was existing without an adequate replacement.”

    On the contrary, it was M$ that broke Munich’s system by killing NT4. XP was not a drop-in replacement and had serious problems at the time like needing frequent re-re-re-boots. XP likely would not have given them any satisfaction. They did use XP widely later because they took so much time migrating to GNU/Linux but that just increased the cost/complexity of the migration. Around that time, 2004, servers of great power became available so the better way would have been to buy a bunch of servers, say a cluster somewhere for file/management, and one or two in each department to run the show as terminal servers. That would have been much faster and new machines as thin clients would have been much cheaper. Unfortunately they had to fill in a lot of lock-in M$ and “partners” had pushed on them over a decade or longer.

  12. oiaohm says:

    http://news.softpedia.com/news/linux-pioneer-munich-makes-huge-step-towards-returning-to-windows-512978.shtml

    Wizard Emeritus jumping the gun. At this stage it only going to be costed. You have worked places how many times people are gun ho about an idea until they see the bill. Interesting that the report was meant to have enough information to agree to migration yet the vote that could pass end up being reduced to cost it first.

    At this stage its still Munich might. Not that they absolutely will. The complaints are all centred on 1 department. Migrate that 1 department to windows leave the remainder on LInux. Also the report suggested that the department with the biggest problem need to look at other software as well.

  13. The Wiz wrote about, “The NeckBeards”.

    Here’s one in action a couple of years ago. No beard at all, although the hair is a bit long… He says the biggest problem with LiMux was adding new hardware to the fleet. That’s something that should have been taken care of in purchasing or by the suppliers. It should not have been Munich’s problem alone. Several times I’ve had new hardware thrown at me with zero input and it can happen that there’s a lack of a driver but it’s rare. At my last school 12 brand new PCs were acquired for teachers with no input from me and Debian worked perfectly on all of them. Nice machines. I was also at one school where an HP colour printer was acquired that would not work with GNU/Linux. It wasn’t a problem because it was mostly used by the school administration. I did not need colour printing because I had a bunch of colour monitors in class and the lab, and a projector. So, this is an organizational problem more than it is a problem associated with GNU/Linux. It certainly is possible to acquire hardware that works well with GNU/Linux with just a tiny effort, like reading the damned specs.

  14. The Wiz wrote, “The NeckBeards and politicials who rammed through LiMux in Munich Broke what was existing without an adequate replacement.”

    “rammed” is not the right word. They made a very conservative and careful decision and then over a decade gently moved it forward. “nudged” would be too strong a word. “wafted” might be about right. Remember, I wanted to do it on a weekend by using thin clients… Munich did it department by department in an excruciatingly thorough manner. They also did much more than just install GNU/Linux, sorting out the IT-structure completely, sorting out the applications and discarding ones that weren’t needed, going to web-applications where they could and only converting about 80% of machines, while staff and number of machines grew. It wasn’t even a change. It was an evolution.

  15. Wizard Emeritus says:

    ” It done quite well to last this long.”

    So what. By blindly implementing the move to Linux without proper analysis. The NeckBeards and politicials who rammed through LiMux in Munich Broke what was existing without an adequate replacement. They then “Bought” broblem, hook line and sinker.
    You can make all the excuses you want, but the fact remains that Munich has started the process of re-implementing its desktop IT on a windows based platform. And yes they WILL have challenges and costs, and yes it will take time.

    But it will happen.

  16. oiaohm says:

    dougman what spelling errors if you first statement is directly made up what is the need to read the remainder of your comment. Put up time. You said spelling errors you better be able to back that up or your a fib teller.

  17. dougman says:

    That was painful to read. The spelling errors, non-parallel sentence structure, and punctuation errors detracted from whatever point the author was trying to make.

  18. oiaohm says:

    dougman not welcome because you did not compare existing with what was proposed to see the cost different and I just point out you were incompetent comparing again?????

  19. dougman says:

    Go home Oiaohm, your wall of text is not welcome.

  20. oiaohm says:

    Cost for future Windows deployment per year? 15M €
    http://www.h-online.com/open/news/item/Microsoft-study-Linux-migration-cost-Munich-EUR60-7-million-1789679.html
    Lets take HP worse guess figures. This says the figure you are aiming at is about 6M € per year what means you figure is over double. Munich has not even spent 6M € per year but closer to the figure of 1M €

    The deployed replacement hardware cost to replace the lot today is most likely around 30M€ to turn over the computer every 10 years you need 3M€. So they should at least be spending 3M€+ extra a year. 15 M€ is 2 to 3 times the cost they should be spending but have not been spending.

    0.02 % is about the budget the IT area is getting. If Munich had been spending the same budget with windows they would not have anywhere near the network of machine they have.

  21. oiaohm says:

    Just like every other municipality in Germany. And elsewhere. I mean, perish the thought! Munich is a special snowflake, isn’t it?
    DrLoser reality here is Munich runs more public services than most other municipalities in Germany. Also has a bigger IT deployment compare to municipalities size than every other municipality in germany. Worse lot of their system is older than hell. There was a Ubuntu request not to drop 32 bit support even not to drop support for cpu prior to the year 2000 by Munich.

    So it is a special snowflake. Its like looking at a 100 meter across snowflake and wondering how in hell it can exist. Then you wake up it cannot remain existing this way forever and has to break. The fact it was a 100 meter across snowflake was clear in about the year 2009 with some of the requests that were been place to ubuntu. It done quite well to last this long.

    Do you really think that the professionals implementing this are going to be as bad as the neckBeards that botched LiMux?
    Wizard Emeritus even if you replace the IT staff if you don’t change the budget allocations going forwards the system is going to fail again. Same problem failure to refresh hardware and using it until it totally unstable because there is no budget to do anything else. So replacing the neckBeards without changing the penny pinchers policies is not going to change much long term. Changing the neckBeards was done with the migration from windows to LiMux and the same set of failures have happened again. Basically you don’t want to learn from history here at some point you have to look at the budget allocations and go is this sane even allowing running hardware to max serviceable life. The Munich allocation has not been sane for almost 30 years for IT.

    Also the idea of replacing Libreoffice with Microsoft office really a big mistake. MS Office 2013 removed a stack of old document import filters. Governments have to access documents back to 60 to 70 years old at times. So they will need to open documents at times from MS works and other stupidity. So MS Office with Libreoffice would have been some form of sanity. This still brings the question if more than 20% MS Office is required.

    The reality is Libreoffice cannot 100 percent replace MS Office in all use cases but the reverse is also true MS Office cannot 100 percent replace Libreoffice in all use cases either. There is overlap between them but there is uniqueness to each what can be important to operations. There are a list of file access problems that due to using Libreoffice they are not seeing.

    Black and White answers are almost always wrong correct answer are more often shades of grey.

    DrLoser the 15million spend by the greens in Munich is to replace 8000 machines or half the current deployment. Most of that is 32 bit single core systems. Now needing to replace half the system so they can run all 64 bit software I think does define a special snowflake of a network or at least you hope this is an example of a special snowflake of a network.

  22. DrLoser says:

    I imagine that simple multiplication is not beyond you, Robert?

  23. DrLoser says:

    Do you really think Munich will fire all their IT-staff just to change the OS? It’s the same folks who set up an overly complicated system to replace an older overly complicated system…

    Hardly the best recommendation in the world not to fire the entire staff, is it, Robert?

    Not that anybody else but you came up with this nitwit suggestion.

    Now then. X * Y. An answer, please.

  24. DrLoser says:

    It looks to me as though the budget is running amok.

    First of all, Poglet, it is merely a proposal at this point. Which means there is no budget allocated. Which means you are blowing steam out of every available orifice.

    And secondly, I note that you have not addressed my direct question about how to reconcile X * Y in this particular case.

    You can’t, can you?

  25. The Wiz wrote, “Do you really think that the professionals implementing this are going to be as bad as the neckBeards that botched LiMux?”

    Do you really think Munich will fire all their IT-staff just to change the OS? It’s the same folks who set up an overly complicated system to replace an older overly complicated system…

  26. dougman says:

    Pogsey, you just don’t understand business.

    One quarter of one percent is a NOT a serious outlay in costs. For example, you are planning on spending upwards of $15K CAD for a electric big-wheel. A headlight, that costs $33 CAD is a single drop of the sum total of costs in the lifetime of said vehicle.

    But no, someone, somewhere will incessantly complain, whine and bitch about how that that annual outlay in costs for a headlight, is just to exorbitant and they should use candles, as beeswax is free and open for everyone to use.

  27. Wizard Emeritus says:

    “Well, when will the taxpayers notice?”

    Do you really think that the professionals implementing this are going to be as bad as the neckBeards that botched LiMux? If the transition is done correctly, as opposed to the inept mess that was made of the transition to LiMux, the taxpayer won’t notice at all.

  28. Well, when will the taxpayers notice? It looks to me as though the budget is running amok. When the crunch comes in a year or two, will they look to cutting IT-costs? Perhaps they will prefer to pay for FLOSS versus M$’s licences.

  29. DrLoser says:

    How dare you quote cold hard solid facts, Douglas?

    Why, a focus on facts would cause Robert’s finely tuned brain to implode.

  30. dougman says:

    Munich Revenue, 6.55B € (2015)

    Cost for future Windows deployment per year?

    15M €

    Which equals out to be 0.22 %.

    Perhaps Pogsey, people do not have free time like you to do dabble daily into Linux settings?

    Next order of business??

  31. DrLoser says:

    In any case, Robert, this is one of those rare cases where your insane prejudices can be put to an immediate test.

    Apparently the vote is due tomorrow. Want to guess the result?

    I’m guessing you will lose. It’s all because of Donald Trump, obviously. That, and Evil Pink Unicorns.

  32. DrLoser says:

    Do you enjoy dealing with bogus figures, Pog? Because you’re dealing with bogus figures right here.

    Leave aside all my other comments. Focus on this absurd claim by the Green Party. Here’s a simple little equation for you:

    Replacement cost = X * Y.

    Also leave aside the alternative to insta-replacement. (We can deal with that issue later.) Assume that the Doomsday Scenario is upon Munich.

    Now, we know one of X or Y: it’s around 4000.

    Explain to me how the Green Party has come up with a credible number for the other variable.

    And once you’ve contorted yourself into that position, consider the obvious solution that both myself and Douglas would come up with … at a substantially lower cost.

  33. DrLoser says:

    Well, of course, the Foundation is unimpeachably independent, isn’t it?

    And Accenture is primarily a partner of Microsoft, with practically no other business interests at all, isn’t it?

    And it would clearly be in Munich’s interest to take up this futuristic notion of running all Office (etc) apps on a browser. Because clearly Accenture are not proposing this wonderful project on the basis that, well, they would end up providing the infrastructure for it at a vast cost. I mean, that’s not what Accenture ever does, is it?

    (Actually, Pog, you are probably ignorant of the ways of Accenture. Go look them up. The results will dismay you.)

    And clearly there is no possible way that Munich can go back to using Microsoft products.

    Just like every other municipality in Germany. And elsewhere. I mean, perish the thought! Munich is a special snowflake, isn’t it?

    One thing that did make me laugh, from your link to special pleading, was the following:

    In addition, according to estimates provided by Green Party councillors, another 15 million euros should be spent to replace or upgrade PCs which are perfect for a small footprint operating system such as Linux, but cannot support even a Windows 10 basic configuration.

    I’d love to see an inventory of these devices. Want to bet they are almost all fifteen year old junkers? If that is 15% to 20% of the Munich IT estate, btw, I would suggest that the municipality has more problems than a simple choice of OS.

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