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Why Microsoft is wary of open source?

But how far Microsoft is willing to go with open source appears limited, said Smith, who noted that while attacking Linux, the company promises to support the Unix variant through .Net.

It’s “a nice PR story for Microsoft to talk about the possibilities about .Net on Linux,” he said. “It is true that Linux can participate in those .Net services, but don’t expect Microsoft to provide any incentive or anything else that would make that possible.”

Dain said Microsoft’s attacks on Linux and open source might in the long run benefit technology buyers. “Personally, I think the talk on both sides--Microsoft vs. open source--will end up benefiting consumers in the workplace and at home. There definitely is competition in the marketplace, and this battle simply proves the point.”

And while Microsoft may have the advantage in the consumer market with Windows, it’s still the underdog in the large-scale business server market.

“To many people, including myself, implementing a Microsoft solution is a much more cost-effective way to go than a Sun or other high-end Unix/mainframe solution,” Dain said.