UK Linux show host denies Debian stand space

'If we give one non-profit body a free stand, everyone will want one,' says organiser


British Linux users have slammed IT Events, organiser of the UK's upcoming Linux Expo 2000 show, for refusing to allow Debian to exhibit at the show, despite claiming that the exhibition represents all the major Linux distributions. "Linux Expo 2000 claims to have all the major players - without Debian, it doesn't," said one UK Linux supporter in an email to The Register. "It seems a pity that IT Events should be so out of tune with the whole nature of Linux and free software that it should take such a mean attitude." And that's certainly the way it looks. IT Events' problem with Debian is that it won't cough up for a stand. Hardly surprising, since Debian is a non-profit voluntary organisation. From IT Events' perspective, however, no dough means no show. IT Events is, after all, a commercial organisation, and the idea of giving away valuable stand space goes very much against the grain. Indeed, there are few, if any, show organisers who would take a different attitude. Some Linux proponents have also criticised IT Events for charging more for stand space this year, which is also freezing out small Linux companies. That's fair enough, since these are themselves businesses - the issue here is really IT Events' attitude to non-profit organisations. While Debian did make an appearance at last year's show, that was simply because an unnamed exhibitor pulled out at the last minute and, under the terms of its contract, it had to pay for the stand in any case. That handily provided a space for Debian, which would not have got in otherwise. "That was a very pleasant surprise for us," Debian leader Wichert Akkerman told The Register. "The Debian booth last year was one of the most popular booths... however, unless something changed since last week, we aren't exhibiting and no stand has been donated." IT Events' Jonathon Heastie, the organiser of Linux Expo 2000, confirmed that so far, no stand space was available for Debian, and that this did to a degree sit at odds with the company's claim that the show would feature all the major Linux distributions. However, unless there's a repeat of last year's scenario, Debian isn't likely to have much luck. "We can't give stands away for free, because then everyone will want one," Heastie told The Register. For a company that has primarily focused its efforts on the highly commercial Windows NT market, that attitude isn't surprising. IT Events' management, however, has yet to figure that the Linux world, with its mix of commercial and non-profit work, is very different - something that Heastie tacitly admitted himself. "I'm having a meeting today [with IT Events' management] to discuss this issue," he said. Heastie also held out the prospect that new approaches will be found to provide space for Linux's non-profit organisations next year. That, however, may come too late for Linux users fed up with what seems like corporate confusion or - worse - indifference to the spirit of community so central to the open source world. ® The Register is a Debian user. Linux Expo 2000 takes place on 1 and 2 June at London's Olympia.


Other stories you might like

  • Cuba ransomware gang scores almost $44m in ransom payments across 49 orgs, say Feds

    Hancitor is at play

    The US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) says 49 organisations, including some in government, were hit by Cuba ransomware as of early November this year.

    The attacks were spread across five "critical infrastructure", which, besides government, included the financial, healthcare, manufacturing, and – as you'd expect – IT sectors. The Feds said late last week the threat actors are demanding $76m in ransoms and have already received at least $43.9m in payments.

    The ransomware gang's loader of choice, Hancitor, was the culprit, distributed via phishing emails, or via exploit of Microsoft Exchange vulnerabilities, compromised credentials, or Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) tools. Hancitor – also known as Chanitor or Tordal –  enables a CobaltStrike beacon as a service on the victim's network using a legitimate Windows service like PowerShell.

    Continue reading
  • Graviton 3: AWS attempts to gain silicon advantage with latest custom hardware

    Key to faster, more predictable cloud

    RE:INVENT AWS had a conviction that "modern processors were not well optimized for modern workloads," the cloud corp's senior veep of Infrastructure, Peter DeSantis, claimed at its latest annual Re:invent gathering in Las Vegas.

    DeSantis was speaking last week about AWS's Graviton 3 Arm-based processor, providing a bit more meat around the bones, so to speak – and in his comment the word "modern" is doing a lot of work.

    The computing landscape looks different from the perspective of a hyperscale cloud provider; what counts is not flexibility but intensive optimization and predictable performance.

    Continue reading
  • The Omicron dilemma: Google goes first on delaying office work

    Hurrah, employees can continue to work from home and take calls in pyjamas

    Googlers can continue working from home and will no longer be required to return to campuses on 10 January 2022 as previously expected.

    The decision marks another delay in getting more employees back to their desks. For Big Tech companies, setting a firm return date during the COVID-19 pandemic has been a nightmare. All attempts were pushed back so far due to rising numbers of cases or new variants of the respiratory disease spreading around the world, such as the new Omicron strain.

    Google's VP of global security, Chris Rackow, broke the news to staff in a company-wide email, first reported by CNBC. He said Google would wait until the New Year to figure out when campuses in the US can safely reopen for a mandatory return.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021