Kenosha, a city of about 100,000, was on the bleeding edge when it began deploying Linux nearly a decade ago. The city had been a Unix shop, but as I.T. demands became more dynamic and more dependent on the Internet, Schall decided that instead of buying more Unix boxes, it was time to look at an inexpensive alternative.
Ruth Schall remembers when vendors and fellow I.T. directors would look at her network and scratch their heads.
“I would get calls and people would think we were freaks. They’d say, ‘What are you doing?’” recalls Schall, director of MIS for the city of Kenosha, Wis. “But people don’t consider us quite so strange anymore.”
Now, instead of expressing surprise at the broad use of Linux , Kenosha’s peers are calling for advice. “It’s been interesting to watch the evolution. Now we have people call and say ‘Can we come in and see what you’re doing?’” she says.