Subject: Re: Lehman Report, Software patents, and more
From: (Peter Busser)
Date: Tue, 30 Aug 1994 12:32:20 +0000 (GMT)

> > Part of that is the cost of Unix, both in terms of the actual software
> > itself, plus the cost of administering it.  But y'know, people are
> > starting to complain about the cost of administering Windows, and
> > Windows isn't even a real OS!  I think the potential is there for
> > Linux to evolve into an end-user friendly OS.
> The potential has been there for Unix to do that for almost 20 years,
> and it hasn't happened.  Why do you think that is?

The first reason is that UNIX involved much more hardware than MS-DOS. It's
just recently that Microsofts stuff wants more system resources than UNIX.

The second reason is that UNIX has always been much more expensive than MS-DOS.
Only recently several inexpensive UNIXes and a few free UNIXes hit the market.
MS-DOS has been around for more than 10 years.

The third reason is that MS-DOS is bundled with the hardware. I think that is,
in conjunction with it's pricing, why CP/M-86 and PC/IX didn't make it against
MS-DOS. If people run UNIX on a PC, then it's because they really really want
to. (The reason why vendors ship MS-DOS with *every* PC box is that MS enforced
a licencing system that was based on the number of sold boxes not on the number
of copies made! So companies had little incentive to put an alternative OS on
their hardware, they already pay for a copy of MS-DOS! (This has just recently

The fourth reason is that has a name of being user unfriendly. Well, a bad name
doesn't change easily.

The fifth reason is that, given the above three reasons, no one has dared to
produce a *real* end-user UNIX a la OS/2.

Peter Busser