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Edition 1.4, 29th January 1999

Greetings,

Welcome to the first 1999 edition of TechnoBeat, and best New Year wishes to all subscribers and readers.

We hope you find TechnoBeat refreshing, informative and useful. Details on how to sign off can be found at the end of this message.

In this edition:

+ Open the Window ?

+ Network OS battle grounds: the war goes on.

+ Compaq to offer pre-loaded Linux

+ Do the right thing.

+ The State of the Desktop

+ Pentium 333A now the entry level CPU

+ Building the Information Community in Africa

+ do NT ?

+ New Year Special

 

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+ Open the Window ?

A concept called Open Source has played a large part in making the Internet happen, amongst other developments in the computer industry. However, in the commercial world, source code is generally a highly guarded secret.

That is until recently, and now the Open Source movement is gaining ground. Even the biggest legends in the industry are now proudly publishing their code for all to see and use. For more on Open Source, and the rest of the story, see http://www.pcb.co.za/technobeat/tb1-4-1_29011999.htm


+ Network OS battle grounds: the war goes on.

In the realm of the battle ground of the Network Operating Systems, NT has been shown to be slower than NetWare 5 in terms of file throughput for users. In tests by an independent testing agency, NetWare 5 out performed NT by up to 67% in terms of disk throughput. See the NetBench Performance Validation at http://www.keylabs.com/results/novell/nw5.htm


+ Compaq to offer pre-loaded Linux

One of the world's biggest server and PC manufacturers, Compaq, have begun to offer Linux as a pre-load option on their servers. This is significant since it shows that it is reliable and stable enough to get their full backing.

"Next month, Compaq and Red Hat Software Inc. plan to announce a deal to deliver Red Hat Linux Version 5.2 pre-loaded on Compaq servers, according to sources close to the companies. Compaq will also offer 24-by-7 service and support for the Linux-based servers, the sources said".

See the full story at http://www.zdnet.com/zdnn/stories/news/0,4586,385256,00.html


+ Do the right thing.

Microsoft seem to be facing increasing woes, that is besides record profits. A judge recently ruled that they "Should do the Right Thing" when it comes to benefits for their temporary work force, some of whom (one third of it's workforce) have been PermaTemps for years.

"Seattle - A federal judge scolded Microsoft on Thursday over new contract language requiring temporary workers to waive any awards from a pending lawsuit over the software company's employment practices."

See http://www.wired.com/news/news/email/explode-infobeat/business/story/17355.html for the full story.


+ The State of the Desktop

Getting back to the desktop, which has been Microsoft's bread and butter since DOS 1.0, will Linux (or anything else) ever make inroads here ?

The general feeling is not just yet, but close. Linux installation and maintenance is far to ‘techie' for the average Windows user as it stands, many of whom have never worked with a prompt and command line interface, let alone cryptic commands.

"While 1998 proved to be the year Linux took the server market by storm, a lot of work needs to happen before the operating system can repeat this feat on the desktop."

However, Corel Corp. is leading the Linux desktop charge by releasing a pre-configured PC with Linux soon: the NetWinder LC (http://www.corelcomputer.com/products/linux/netwinder_lc.htm). This will come bundled with the Linux OS and KDE Graphic User Interface (GUI - like Windows ), Netscape Communicator 4.5, Corel's WordPerfect for Linux and other desktop features.

See http://www.zdnet.com/pcweek/stories/news/0,4153,382643,00.html for the full story.


+ Pentium 333A now the entry level CPU

The 333MHz Pentium Celeron 333A is now the entry level Slot-1 CPU offered by PCB. The Celeron, http://www.intel.com/celeron/index.htm, is a scaled-down version of the full Pentium II CPU, yet has 128KByte of Level 2 (L2) cache. It has over 19 million transistors on the chip and also benefits from the same P6 micro-architecture core as the Pentium II. It also has support for the Intel MMX Instruction extensions.

The older type of Pentium was on a square chip with pins, and is not socket compatible with the newer types of Pentium II CPU's. Hence an upgrade to a Pentium II or Celeron requires a new motherboard.

The Celeron is over a R1000 cheaper than the higher performance Pentium II, which now has an entry level of 350MHz and features a dedicated 512KB level two (L2) cache. The Pentium II processor also includes 32KB of L1 cache (16K data, 16K instruction), twice that of the older Pentium Pro processor.

However, if your lust for x86 CPU power is insatiable, don't despair: the Pentium III is on its way !

For the latest prices & configurations on PCB Celeron and Pentium II Systems, please see http://www.pcb.co.za/price_lists/pentiumII.htm


+ Building the Information Community in Africa

The British Council in South Africa, in collaboration with South African and international partners is organising a conference: BICA 99. It is a conference to bring together the experiences of telecentre practitioners, and to assist the development of telecentres through sustainable partnerships in Africa. The emphasis of BICA 99 will be on implementation.

BICA 99 will also be a regional feeder event for Global Knowledge II, the Global Knowledge Partnership Conference to be held in 2000. See the Web site at www.bica99.org for further details.


+ do NT ?

What did you do over the Christmas break ? Digital nomad D*Cypher had fun (NoT) installing NT workstation. Follow the action at http://www.pcb.co.za/technobeat/tb1-4-2_29011999.htm



+ New Year Special

PCB is offering an incredible deal on the HP 7200i Internal CD-Writer at only R1995 for a limited period. See http://www.pcb.co.za/price_lists/specials.htm for full details.

 

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