Korea migrates 120K civil servants to Linux desktop

Microsoft is big loser


The Korean government is to buy 120,000 copies of Hancom Linux Deluxe this year, enough to switch 23 per cent of its installed base Microsoft user to open source equivalents.

By standardising on Linux and HancomOffice, the Korean government expects to make savings of 80 per cent, compared with buying Microsoft products.

This should be regarded as a big setback for Microsoft in Korea, for many years one of the few countries in which it was not the dominant player in all of the desktops app business.

The thorn in its side was Haansoft, formerly known as Hangul and Computer, which is the owner of the Hancom business. Until the late 90s, the Hangul wordprocessor was the major wordprocessing package in Korea with 90 per cent-plus market share. (This dominance was not reflected in sales figures - as most packages were pirated.)

Microsoft even tried to buy the company in 1999 - but was beaten back by a fierce, nationalistic campaign conducted by local consumers and business (Story: Koreans raise the Anti-Microsoft standard).

The combination of cost imperative and patriotism may be even more attractive in many other Asian countries - Korea is, after all the world's 11th biggest economy. And despite suffering economic crisis in the late 90s, Korea has deeper pockets than most of its neighbours.

China, the biggest prize of all - potentially - could already be slipping from Microsoft's grasp. This month Gartner noted the award of contracts by the Beijing municipal governments to six indigenous bidders, with the seventh, Microsoft, rejected (Story: Red Flag Linux beats out Windows in Beijing). ®

Related stories

UK Gov agency threatens to dump 500,000 Windows desktops
MS loses Korean action over Windows trademark


Other stories you might like

  • Want to buy your own piece of the Pi? No 'urgency' says Upton of the listing rumours

    A British success story... what happens next?

    Industry talk is continuing to circulate regarding a possible public listing of the UK makers of the diminutive Raspberry Pi computer.

    Over the weekend, The Telegraph reported that a spring listing could be in the offing, with a valuation of more than £370m.

    Pi boss, Eben Upton, described the newspaper's article as "interesting" in an email to The Register today, before repeating that "we're always looking at ways to fund the future growth of the business, but the $45m we raised in September has taken some of the urgency out of that."

    Continue reading
  • JetBrains embraces remote development with new IDE for multiple programming languages

    Security, collaboration, flexible working: Fleet does it all apparently

    JetBrains has introduced remote development for its range of IDEs as well as previewing a new IDE called Fleet, which will form the basis for fresh tools covering all major programming languages.

    JetBrains has a core IDE used for the IntelliJ IDEA Java tool as well other IDEs such as Android Studio, the official programming environment for Google Android, PyCharm for Python, Rider for C#, and so on. The IDEs run on the Java virtual machine (JVM) and are coded using Java and Kotlin, the latter being primarily a JVM language but with options for compiling to JavaScript or native code.

    Fleet is "both an IDE and a lightweight code editor," said the company in its product announcement, suggesting perhaps that it is feeling some pressure from the success of Microsoft's Visual Studio Code, which is an extensible code editor. Initial language support is for Java, Kotlin, Go, Python, Rust, and JavaScript, though other languages such as C# will follow. Again like VS Code, Fleet can run on a local machine or on a remote server. The new IDE uses technology developed for IntelliJ such as its code-processing engine for features such as code completion and refactoring.

    Continue reading
  • Nextcloud and cloud chums fire off competition complaint to the EU over Microsoft bundling OneDrive with Windows

    No, it isn't the limited levels of storage that have irked European businesses

    EU software and cloud businesses have joined Nextcloud in filing a complaint with the European Commission regarding Microsoft's alleged anti-competitive behaviour over the bundling of its OS with online services.

    The issue is OneDrive and Microsoft's habit of packaging it (and other services such as Teams) with Windows software.

    Nextcloud sells on-premises collaboration platforms that it claims combine "the convenience and ease of use of consumer-grade solutions like Dropbox and Google Drive with the security, privacy and control business needs." Microsoft's cloud storage system, OneDrive, is conspicuous by its absence.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021