Convincing a school district to migrate from OS X to Ubuntu or Edubuntu

uwe uwe.geercken at
Tue Nov 18 10:37:00 GMT 2008


I started from scratch here in Germany. A little town of 3000 people. As
I couldn't touch the windows computers, I bought the parts, build a
server and started to run edubuntu. now version 8.04 runs very nice and
I am quite happy.

If at your end of the world the people always want to have the latest
stuff, then you have a good argument for edubuntu: install it once and
use it everywhere. you are very quick; show this to somedoby. they will
be astonished.

my other argument is always: give the kids another choice. doesn't
matter what they use in the end, what they like better or prefer, but
they will have the choice to decide for that what suits them best, what
they like most. I believe that is important.

and then all I can wish you is: patience. for me all is going to slow
but my wife tell's me I am moving fast - I guess that's einsteins theory
on relativity... I am sometimes impatient.

I have to go for my classes this morning and see into the happy eyes of
my kids (~10 years old, 15 of them) when I teach them linux



Am Montag, den 17.11.2008, 19:34 -0500 schrieb David McNally:
> Hello everybody.
> This question will probably take a little while to type, but I'll try
> to get it through.
> First off, I should probably point out that I live here in the United
> States, in northern New Jersey. The kind of people who live around me
> are rich idiots; they're the kind of people who, somehow, have a lot
> of money, but still use Windows. No one here knows anything about
> Linux, let alone Ubuntu.
> I use three different Operating Systems every day: Ubuntu at home, OS
> X at school, and Windows everywhere else (mostly friends' houses).
> It's confusing, but I'm pretty good with all three of them. Obviously,
> Windows is still the worst of the three, and I try to avoid it as
> often as possible, but that's not too hard. However, I'm completely
> stuck with OS X at school. I actually have classes where we sit in
> front of Macs and learn to use Microsoft Office 2008. Which means I'm
> stuck using that stupid ribbon that those Microsoft imbiciles put into
> Office 2008. We also browse the web with Safari, the crummy web
> browser that Apple put into OS X.
> Then I go home to Ubuntu and everything's just perfect.
> I'm not saying that OS X is terrible; it's actually pretty good. But
> time after time, the teachers and students are confused with one
> program after another not loading or freezing or something. The IT
> people, in my opinion, have the hardest job in the entire building.
> They have to make OS X Server work with 500-some-odd computers with OS
> X (which is harder than it sounds), and install Office 2008 on every
> computer, and if anything stops working, they're the ones who have to
> fix it. And, needless to say, there are many other programs that they
> use.
> I'm thinking: what if we could just say good-bye to all of this and
> just switch to Ubuntu or Edubuntu. It would be hard, especially
> because the school has been on Macintosh since the early 90's, but
> that doesn't mean it wouldn't be impossible. Everyone was able to
> switch from OS 9 to OS X without too much hassle. I know that the
> Ubuntu/Edubuntu servers work pretty well, so they could replace OS X
> Server with that, and replace OS X itself with Ubuntu/Edubuntu. I know
> that you can run other OSes on iMacs, so we could do that, and we
> could replace Safari with Firefox, and replace MS Office 2008 with
> (One of my classes is "Computer Applications" which is
> really just learning to use Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc, but my
> teacher is so used to using the older versions, which were always
> almost exactly that same, version-to-version, so she is completely
> confused with the ribbon and all of the other changes. I know that
> OO.o will probably never put in the ribbon.)
> But I'm still the only person that I know that uses Linux. I'm on my
> little Linux island, surrounded by Windows and OS X. Many of my
> teachers don't even know what Linux is, let alone Ubuntu or Edubuntu.
> The school has spent hundreds of thousands of dollars (yes, I did all
> of the math) on software alone; for reasons I don't understand, the
> school always has to have the most recent version of everything,
> especially OS X and MS Office.
> Still, I don't see any reason that it wouldn't work. Everyone would be
> using OO.o, so it would be just like older versions of MS Office, and
> the computers would never get viruses, and I know that there are many
> open-source Linux programs for helping teachers. It couldn't be done
> overnight, but they could do it over the summer vacation (or maybe
> even the Christmas vacation). For the few programs that we use where
> there is no Linux alternative (by the same company or an open-source
> clone), we would have to use Wine or something like it. I'm not sure
> what the other alternatives are, but we could find out.
> Would we be able to do this at all? Also: is Edubuntu really that much
> better for schools than Ubuntu?
> Please let me know what you think. 
> Thanks, 
> David McNally
> P.S.: I originally sent this email to the
> ubuntu-users at mailing list, and was told that I would
> have more luck here at edubuntu-users at
> -- 
> David McNally
> david3333333 at
> apt-get moo

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