Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby dasein » 2015-10-24 16:26

Footnote: the HST's 486 is a relatively recent upgrade, installed during the final maintenance mission. For most of its life, HST ran on a 386 (SX, IIRC)

Mardybear would love it.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby tomazzi » 2015-10-24 20:00

andre@home wrote:it is also not the complete story that "Windows fails dramatically" and maybe for your case "and it crashed so easily,"...
That may be true for Win3.1/95/98 but not for most NT-based systems and derivatives from that (like Win-NT, 2000, XP, 7).
On my work and private those systems hardly crashed. I think they learned from Linux.... ;)

NT? - definitely not.
Win 2000, XP and newer, which were/are based on a "borrowed" (I say: stolen) NT (that is: VMS) technology - yes, they "seem" to be more stable....
But they are not.

Probably the only true "technology" "invented" by Microsoft is to cheat the customer, so that he will think that the system is not crashing anymore - by restarting crashed services/processes in the background. LOL, just LOL

The most "successful" change was in explorer.exe - starting from win xp/2k it is restarted when it crashes, so the user can only see the effect of re-loading desktop icons (instant unexpected re-drawing of all of them). Thanks to that, the user is no longer leaved with a dead blank screen, where the only option is to run a task manager and manually start the explorer.exe process again.

Regards.

PS. I'm not a Microshit hater per se - I'm just laughing at their miserable efforts to build a reliable OS - it took them over 2 decades, and still windows is a shit - slow, unreliable, memory hog with tons of security holes*, tens of thousands of bugs with each release... and many, many more "funny" things.
:)

(*) According to stats published by anti-virus software vendors, 2-3 thousands of malware, trojans and other classes of viruses' signatures are added to a databases each single day (typically). The minimum that I've ever seen over few past years was about 250 (single day).
f.e. at the time of this writting there was 8706 new definitions added to a Comodo database: (24.10.2015)
https://www.comodo.com/home/internet-security/updates/vdp/database.php?track=2737&key5sk0=2737&key5sk1=c19f4d493a6e9eee7de858e99592375f52808a51
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby andre@home » 2015-10-24 20:19

If Linux would sell itself so well... Windows would already be completely dead.... it is'nt as the Linux world was not convincing enough to sell it superior quaility..?
So let us keep our head upright but not wear too big shoes that do not fit us yet.... or scream to loud ....

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Usage_sha ... ng_systems

With 1.74% use... Linux just beats Vista... ;) in the "Desktop/Laptop operating system browsing statistics"

Let's try to do better but not with this attitude which is not based on facts, not a scientific approach and certainly not discussed in balance.

I like Linux a lot, but in several things Windows is still better.

Remember: not all consumers are IT-specialists..... the fear to start with Linux is big, right or not that's not the question, it is the reality. Change that when you want to have a challenge and prove your ratings of success here...
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby GarryRicketson » 2015-10-24 20:33

Kind of drifting in topic, but I think that was part of the plan, First create the OS, next create the viruses, then when the people have bought the OS software, and they find it constantly being destroyed by the viruses, the same software writers created, well that opens a whole other profitable market, selling the ant-virus software, needed to keep the expensive OS running.
Like I said , they are "buisness men", the intention and goal is to produce products that the people depend on, and make sure those products do not last very long, so that the people have to buy more, etc.
----------------------
I smoke a lot, but I do not pay for my tobacco, I grow it, but any way that is another topic, but anyway, no money needed, yes , I still pay, but with work, it is a lot of work to produce a good crop.
But similar in that the cigarette manufactures worked very hard at coming up with recipes, that include chemicals to make them even more addicting, Why ? to make more money, they are "buisness men", as well.

Using Linux/Debian, and opensource free software, is similar, I don't know enough to actually create my own OS, but any way, the products are of better quality, simply because they are built and designed to last, there still are lots of changes all ways needed, because the hardware, and technology is constantly changing,
In many ways Windows is not really that bad, I had to appear to be good, in order to get as many people "hooked" as they can. Just because things appear to be good, does not make them good though.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby dilberts_left_nut » 2015-10-24 21:06

dasein wrote:Well, yeah. They are rocket scientists. :mrgreen:


Pah!

Rocket science is easy - just add more thrust until it flies ... :D

It's the Orbital Dynamics and Slingshot Trajectory guys that impress me.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby andre@home » 2015-10-24 21:33

GarryRicketson wrote:Kind of drifting in topic, but I think that was part of the plan, First create the OS, next create the viruses, then when the people have bought the OS software, and they find it constantly being destroyed by the viruses, the same software writers created, well that opens a whole other profitable market, selling the ant-virus software, needed to keep the expensive OS running.
Like I said , they are "buisness men", the intention and goal is to produce products that the people depend on, and make sure those products do not last very long, so that the people have to buy more, etc..


When Linux would take over Windows place.. virus for Linux will developed? Why.....? As it is then the largest OS and a special group of people are interested in stealing data/money from that group. It is as simple as that. A few moths ago there was a security conference in The Hague and one of the leading men told that a very small but very smart group of specialist can take over any system, including Linux, all over the world. Such a case takes weeks, months of preparation, but at the end they are successfull. As long as those people are working on the right side in order to protect our safety, this is not a problem... but some are working for criminal organizations or secret services who have other, less positive goals...

With the tobacco industry: you're right. It is even proven. I think the comparison with Operating Systems is a different one and so not correct.

And I also agree with your remark "In many ways Windows is not really that bad", I would even say in some cases even better for arguments given before.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby tomazzi » 2015-10-24 21:37

andre@home wrote:With 1.74% use... Linux just beats Vista... ;) in the "Desktop/Laptop operating system browsing statistics"


I'm sure that You're able to read that wiki page with understanding - that is, Android has 48% of end-user systems, while windows has only 14% ...
This is of course because the PC (desktop/laptop) market is dying...

1st million (10^6) of world's biggest servers are running Linux-based systems...

This means, that Linux-based systems are creating a huge surface for attacks - but as for now, viruses for Linux are almost non-existent, and even viruses which are targeting Android are Java-based...

GarryRicketson wrote:Kind of drifting in topic, but I think that was part of the plan, First create the OS, next create the viruses, then when the people have bought the OS software, and they find it constantly being destroyed by the viruses, the same software writers created, well that opens a whole other profitable market, selling the ant-virus software, needed to keep the expensive OS running.


Yes, I agree that this is a very probable explanation - most of currently active viruses are using quite old holes, which could be patched with relatively little effort - but, Microshit is totally aware of the fact, that security business brings billions of dollars each single year...

Regards.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby andre@home » 2015-10-24 21:52

I really think that it is just a matter of time that virus makers et al will move the the largest OS at that time. So when this will be Linux... we need more protection and we should not do as the ostrich....
I refer to that ostrich, which is known for its habit of burying its head in the sand.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby GarryRicketson » 2015-10-24 22:05

So when this will be Linux... we need more protection and we should not do as the ostrich....
I refer to that ostrich, which is known for its habit of burying its head in the sand

Well, don't say "we", I do watch my system very carefully, but I understand, "I know what you mean". Many people do, stick their heads in a hole, and pretend , nothing will happen.
There is plenty of security, and methods of protecting a linux system from viruses, hackers, kiddie scripts, and all of that.
And these days, I think one needs to really take a close look at what is in the ISO they down load, when they download and install the OS, it may have things they would rather not have in their system, and I mean, after all, it is the OS, it could be designed to do anything, ...
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby dasein » 2015-10-24 22:37

dilberts_left_nut wrote:...just add more thrust until it flies ... :D

Well, maybe not quite that easy ;)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9EnUQltR9A

Hijack: Back in the '50s, my mother worked for a company who developed some launch-critical part (stabilizer/gyroscope, IIRC) for the Titan (the re-purposed ICBM that powered the Gemini missions). Fast-forward to the 1960s, when every space launch was a big deal and televised. Every time we'd watch a Gemini mission launch, she'd get a far away look in her eyes as the rocket lifted off the launchpad, and then kinda shake her head and mutter something along the lines of, "I remember when it (meaning the rocket) couldn't do that."
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby dilberts_left_nut » 2015-10-24 22:55

dasein wrote:
dilberts_left_nut wrote:...just add more thrust until it flies ... :D

Well, maybe not quite that easy ;)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z9EnUQltR9A

Yeah, but I bet all the rocket scientists in those bunkers were immediately pointing their fingers squarely at the rocket engineers. :D
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby dasein » 2015-10-24 23:04

dilberts_left_nut wrote:Yeah, but I bet all the rocket scientists in those bunkers were immediately pointing their fingers squarely at the rocket engineers. :D

:lol: :lol:

Well, to hear my mother tell it (and she was there), it was more like everybody looking dumbfounded at everybody else and wailing, "WHY??!! That should have worked!"
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby praka123 » 2015-10-25 10:18

It's foolish to believe that such a big corporation cannot secure their OS (Windows). They created a eco-system and a paid model which is cunning and unscrupulous on Windows users. As someone mentioned earlier - created Windows to be purposefully weak in security and internals so as to support virus creators, antivirus/anti-malware and other hundreds of performance/tuning software to exist and thrive. Really good for the software developers. Also, a psychological thing is there - that the Windows user with all these antivirus/firewall/performance tuning apps started to believe that he/she is secure and using the best operating system :o . Also, such users usually are fans who underestimate the *NIX like OS since they are psychologically conditioned by the Windows eco-system that you are "secured"!

The case of rootkits and NSA backdoors on Windows was one of the key elements discussed when I started using internet (circa 97 or so). It is still relevant and Microsoft is just revealing it's true nature with Windows 10 and the open telemetry details.
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby andre@home » 2015-10-25 14:31

Let's stay awake else more is this is the future for Linux too.
http://arstechnica.com/security/2014/12 ... for-years/

How long will it take before something real big happens that may kill Windows for ever? Criminals that move away the complete account/ all the money of a bank/pension company.... let a nuclear plant melt down.....?

Well then there is still work to do on the Linux side to make it more secure than it is now....
https://www.google.nl/search?q=linux+ba ... 3&ie=UTF-8
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Re: Why does NASA use linux instead of Windows ?

Postby NFT5 » 2015-10-25 17:08

The real answer to the question in the title of this thread? Cost.

Sure, Linux offers inherent advantages in terms of security and reliability but changes to organisation wide OS deployments tend to coincide with major MS moves that make a previous version, like XP, which is widely deployed, redundant. The shiny new replacement then had hardware requirements that were well above much of what organisations had out there, so they were looking at upgrading both hardware and OS. Whether you have 10 computers or 100,000 that becomes a significant cost.

Changing over to Linux means that there is some labour cost but that is one off and can be well offset by the savings even on discounted MS licencing. The savings in not having to upgrade hardware, extending the life of existing machines and reducing the hardware requirements for new machines are enormous in both absolute and relative terms.

For example, in my own small business, the end of XP meant a cash cost of around $7000 to move to Win7 and upgrade some hardware. Not much money in terms of the size of a government department budget, but significant for us. I probably blew most of that in time, researching and implementing Debian as a replacement OS, but the difference is that it was mostly time outside of the normal operation of the business and had no real impact on our cash flow. Aside from differences in scale I think that the experience for NASA, and all those other organisations listed in the Wikipedia entry, would have been similar.

What I did find interesting was that, for those organisations which had made the decision to move to Linux but then experienced low take up rates, or in fact later reversed their decision, the primary factor in successful Linux deployment was education of the users. Deciding on a user interface that is easy for your users to transition to and then training them to use it effectively is, I believe, paramount in the success of a project like this.
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