[clug] Internode dumps FOSS for MS Exchange

Steve Walsh steve at nerdvana.org.au
Thu Feb 18 16:01:05 MST 2010

Chris Smart wrote:
> <snip>
> This is where part of my questions arise. Quite simply, I'm sick and
> tired of pushing for free software at my work, with friends and
> colleagues. It's so exhausting. Hence why I raise this topic on the
> CLUG list, to get some other people's insights into what my attitude
> should be.
Pick your fight. No, seriously, pick your fight. As much as it hurts me 
to say it, there is the right tool for the job. For some people, it's 
MS. For others, it's FOSS. For others again, it's Apple <shudder>.

I was banging my head against the MS camps for a longtime, until I 
decided to pick my battles. When the current site rolled out exchange, I 
built up a box with Mailman, dovecot and squirrelmail on it on the 
quiet. As requests rolled in for moderated mailing lists with archive 
functionality, I pointed the admin at mailman. As requests came in for 
IMAP/POP3 accounts, I pointed them at dovecot and squirrelmail. This 
started out on a VM, after about a month a machine was removed from the 
exchange cluster and allocated to the mailman/dovecot/squirrelmail 
service, and it's now handling mail for the CEO, who prefers to use 
something other than outlook for his email. He doesn't care that the 
system he's got his mail on runs linux. What he cares about is that 
there's a system there that allows him to use what he wants.

When they built sharepoint, I built up a linux box, put Confluence on 
it, and waited for the powerusers to get sick of the Word-in-a-browser 
editor MOSS calls a Wiki. 4 weeks later, confluence was integrated with 
sharepoint and replaced the normal page editor + wiki functionality with 
something people can understand and use.

I built the the webteam a subversion / trac instance under the radar for 
them to do some basic VCS/knowledge tracking, and slowly got them used 
to using it. The webteam merged with the "big-iron" IS team, who have 
been using Visual Source Safe. Now, the IS team want to start using SVN 
/ Trac and move away from VSS, because the first combination suits their 
wants more than the second tool does.

Pick your fights to show people what opensource is, and then, slowly, 
people will want to look at more and more.

Steve Walsh, RHCE
Some random guy who does things with linux and conference networks

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