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Microsoft Keen To Show Windows Is More Secure
Eyes Linux as Growing Competitive Threat

Microsoft, well known for its bullish marketing strategies has made Linux one of the top items on the agenda of its Worldwide Partner Conference. It was complete with tips on how to demolish the open-source competition and a hands-on lab letting partners try out the operating system.

Sessions on topics such as "Selling Against Competitive Platforms" and "Winning in the mid-market vs. Linux", acknowledged that Linux has emerged as the main competition for customers looking to switch away from IBM, Novell or NT4.

Mike Nash, corporate vice president of Microsoft's Security Business and Technology Unit, claimed Microsoft's progress on security has made Windows more secure than Linux. Windows XP SP2 has had half the number of critical vulnerabilities compared with earlier versions of Windows in the nine months since SP2's release in August 2004, he said.

Microsoft brought in Techstream, a small IT training firm, to run a hands-on Linux lab for partners interested in knowing more about open source technology. Attendees were allowed to try out Apache and a Linux installation with the KDE desktop interface.

The presence of Linux reflects the change of attitude of Microsoft towards open source. The company once contented itself with demonising open-source software, and particularly the GNU General Public License that governs Linux. But in recent months Microsoft has opened up to dialogue with top executives at Linux vendors and has begun regularly appearing at Linux trade shows.

These moves might seem to point to a more relaxed attitude, but open-source leaders see them as nothing more than a new tactic to help Microsoft understand its enemy.

Andrew Morton, lead maintainer for the Linux public production kernel, was however unperturbed. According to him open source is about giving users the freedom to understand the software, to contribute to it, to make changes that they need, to integrate it with other products. He expects that if Microsoft were to do anything in that area it would be contrary to shareholders' interests, so he thinks it won't be happening.

About .NETDJ News Desk
.NETDJ News Desk monitors Microsoft .NET and its related technologies, including Silverlight, to present IT professionals with news, updates on technology advances, business trends, new products and standards, and insight.

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Microsoft Keen To Show - Windows Is More Secure. Microsoft, well known for its bullish marketing strategies has made Linux one of the top items on the agenda of its Worldwide Partner Conference. It was complete with tips on how to demolish the open-source competition and a hands-on lab letting partners try out the operating system.




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