Linux, Microsoft war at Kolkata IT fair

Thursday, 23 January 2003, 08:00 Hrs
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KOLKATA: An IT fair beginning here Friday is promising to turn into a battleground for users of software behemoth Microsoft and Linux as both propagate the benefits of their operating systems.

COMPASS 2003, being organised at the Netaji Indoor Stadium by the Computer Association of Eastern India, will see the congregation of over 100 companies, but it's the presentations by the Linux users group that promises to be riveting fare.

"We will use this opportunity to introduce Kolkata to the GNU/Linux and Free/Libre and Open Source Software (FLOSS), and demonstrate and educate that they can be a viable alternative to Microsoft Windows and proprietary software," a spokesman of the Linux users group said.

Microsoft, on the other hand, says a study has concluded that in the long run, the cost of systems running Linux as operating system would be "considerably higher" than ones running on Microsoft platforms.

"This year the fair, being sponsored by Seagate, will be different in that we will have a focussed event for software developers, resellers and service companies," the fair's chairman B. Hari told IANS.

"We have new products in hardware, software and services that will be showcased in the four-day event. The fair will hold a special programme for the channels to discuss the challenges in the market place and on policies of large distribution companies," Hari said.

COMPASS generates good business every year, its organisers claimed. Hari said last year the fair generated enquiries worth 2 billion and "80 percent of that converted into actual sales over a period of time".

He said this year the fair is expected to generate business worth 2.8 billion. The fair is being held at two venues, the Netaji indoor stadium and Sangam Hall, in view of larger participation this year.

While about 100 firms will set up stalls, about 150 delegates are expected to be present at interactive sessions and seminars.
Source: IANS
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