Cost of Linux sound Outrageous ?

Cocomimi

New Member
Hello everyone ! I'm posting as a newbie in the land of Linux users ! I'm in the middle of collecting quotes for a new work server and I feel like the prices I'm getting for the Linux OS are extremely high now that I see that so many versions are free ! I've been quoted $500 for the Linux OS itself (including upkeep / maintenance and monitoring) and about $1250 for an upgrade to Thoroughbred 8.8.2, kernel. Am I missing something here or is this anywhere near reasonable ?! We need a server for all things clinical lab (small business). Thank you in advance for the advice !
 


JasKinasis

Well-Known Member
Linux is completely free. If you, or any of your employees are familiar enough with Linux - You could go out and buy yourself a new rack mount server, or desktop/tower pc and configure and install a Linux server on it yourself, completely for free. And the only cost to you would be for the new PC. Or you could repurpose an old, or existing PC and then there is almost no cost - other than the wages of the employee who sets it up.

The expensive prices you have been quoted are for an expert to securely set up your server for you.
It sounds like some kind of managed hosting deal.

So you aren't paying for Linux per se. You're paying for someone to expertly set up Linux for you. And it sounds like they will deal with upgrading it and monitoring it.

So you're paying for the peace of mind that your server will be set up securely and managed for you.

If you, or any of your employees are savvy enough with Linux, you could save a lot of money, but your IT guy (if you have one) would have to ensure everything is configured securely, stay on top of updates, have some kind of system in place to monitor the server for any intrusions (jic) and have a good backup regime in place. Etc. Etc.

So it's all about balancing the cost. Is it cheaper to pay a 3rd party to deal with setting up and managing your server remotely? Or is it cheaper to set it up onsite yourself and have an employee deal with that side of things?

But Linux itself is 100% free! What you have been quoted for is not Linux itself, but for the service of having it set up and managed for you.
 

JasKinasis

Well-Known Member
As an addendum - I work for a small, independent software company. Our development manager / head programmer has set up several Linux servers on our internal Network, using old development machines.
They do also have a few Windows servers.

But things like our internal bug-tracker and our source control systems are running on separate Linux servers.

The only cost to the company was his time/wages in setting them up. And perhaps an afternoon a week managing/monitoring all of the servers.

And there are the very rare days when there are bigger problems that need to be resolved (rebuilding and reinstalling from backup after HD failure, file system corruption after UPS/power failure, or some other hardware fault).

But so far, in the 11 or 12 years I've been working there, there have been only three days that I can remember where one or more servers were down for repairs.
So for us, the cost of Linux has been negligible.
 

Cocomimi

New Member
Linux is completely free. If you, or any of your employees are familiar enough with Linux - You could go out and buy yourself a new rack mount server, or desktop/tower pc and configure and install a Linux server on it yourself, completely for free. And the only cost to you would be for the new PC. Or you could repurpose an old, or existing PC and then there is almost no cost - other than the wages of the employee who sets it up.

The expensive prices you have been quoted are for an expert to securely set up your server for you.
It sounds like some kind of managed hosting deal.

So you aren't paying for Linux per se. You're paying for someone to expertly set up Linux for you. And it sounds like they will deal with upgrading it and monitoring it.

So you're paying for the peace of mind that your server will be set up securely and managed for you.

If you, or any of your employees are savvy enough with Linux, you could save a lot of money, but your IT guy (if you have one) would have to ensure everything is configured securely, stay on top of updates, have some kind of system in place to monitor the server for any intrusions (jic) and have a good backup regime in place. Etc. Etc.

So it's all about balancing the cost. Is it cheaper to pay a 3rd party to deal with setting up and managing your server remotely? Or is it cheaper to set it up onsite yourself and have an employee deal with that side of things?

But Linux itself is 100% free! What you have been quoted for is not Linux itself, but for the service of having it set up and managed for you.
Thank you so much for your detailed explanation ! You are spot on with mentioning that we do have a Lab Information System that is monitored, updated and well maintained by a seperate entity to whom we also pay a monthly fee (about $700) for this service. Additionally, we have been quoted $1000 for installation and IT on-site presence the day of the install. I was taken aback by the additional cost of the Linux OS as it appears in the quote to have an actual physical cost (in addition to the labor of installation!)

I really appreciate your help and will be very careful with whom my company chooses to install our new server ! I wish I had an eighth of your knowledge so that I was confident to perform the install myself !

Thank you again and have a wonderful day !!
 

TechnoJunky

Silver Member
Silver Supporter
While JasKinasis is technically correct, that Linux is 100%, not all Linux comes without a cost. You can't get Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) for free. In order to get it, you have to have a subscription for support with the company. Many corporations use RHEL because of that support. This company that you're considering getting the computer from is probably installing RHEL vs one of the 100% free versions because of this support. It's easier for them to support you if they have Redhat's support to fall back on when they can't figure it out alone.
 

JasKinasis

Well-Known Member
While JasKinasis is technically correct, that Linux is 100%, not all Linux comes without a cost. You can't get Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) for free. In order to get it, you have to have a subscription for support with the company. Many corporations use RHEL because of that support. This company that you're considering getting the computer from is probably installing RHEL vs one of the 100% free versions because of this support. It's easier for them to support you if they have Redhat's support to fall back on when they can't figure it out alone.
Good point - there are a few Linux distros like RHEL, Suse and Ubuntu that charge for support subscriptions too. I forgot to mention those!

But even so - there are distros like CentOS - which is basically a 100% free clone of RHEL. Or you could use Ubuntu or Suse without the support plans.

The distros that offer paid support plans do give companies more timely access to support and can help to resolve technical problems more quickly and definitively. So it's a case of weighing up the cost of the paid support plans and/or managed hosting VS using the free distros with no support plan and employing a sys-admin with good Linux skills who doesn't need the support.
 

Cocomimi

New Member
While JasKinasis is technically correct, that Linux is 100%, not all Linux comes without a cost. You can't get Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) for free. In order to get it, you have to have a subscription for support with the company. Many corporations use RHEL because of that support. This company that you're considering getting the computer from is probably installing RHEL vs one of the 100% free versions because of this support. It's easier for them to support you if they have Redhat's support to fall back on when they can't figure it out alone.
Thank you ! I'm wondering if paying $1250 upfront for that support is a little excessive ‍♀♀ (I feel that the $700/month that we already pay should allow us some support for the software as a whole but maybe that's only for the LIS suppost, not the OS)! I'm going to submit a counter-offer to our LIMS manager and see how they respond ! I'll keep you posted via this thread ! You all are so knowledgeable and helpful !!
 

Cocomimi

New Member
While JasKinasis is technically correct, that Linux is 100%, not all Linux comes without a cost. You can't get Redhat Enterprise Linux (RHEL) for free. In order to get it, you have to have a subscription for support with the company. Many corporations use RHEL because of that support. This company that you're considering getting the computer from is probably installing RHEL vs one of the 100% free versions because of this support. It's easier for them to support you if they have Redhat's support to fall back on when they can't figure it out alone.
Can you find any reason for an upgrade to Thoroughbred 8.8.2, new OS kernel to cost $1950 ?? We're definitely using a prior version bc our current server is 12 years old! I just want to keep as much $ in our company pocket as possible ! Thanks for your guidance !!
 

Cocomimi

New Member
Does anyone think it's reasonable to pay $1950 for an upgrade to Thoroughbred 8.8.2 OS kernel ? Is this upgrade something I can find free or low cost ?
 

JasKinasis

Well-Known Member
From looking at what you've posted there:
$500 is for the installation of Linux and managing updates etc..
$1950 is for installation of something called throroughbred, licensed for 8 users.

I'm not sure exactly what thoroughbred is. I've never heard of it. But it appears to be some kind of software suite.
 

Cocomimi

New Member
From looking at what you've posted there:
$500 is for the installation of Linux and managing updates etc..
$1950 is for installation of something called throroughbred, licensed for 8 users.

I'm not sure exactly what thoroughbred is. I've never heard of it. But it appears to be some kind of software suite.
Oh wow ! You just made everything crystal clear and now I see exactly what's going on here ! I was mistaking the Thoroughbred kernel as a part of the Linux OS itself when in reality, Thoroughbred is most likely the Lab Info System (LIS) application and licenses for 8 users !! Your explanation and link were so enlightening ! I feel so much better in making a decision after your insight ! Thank you again !!
 

Members online


Latest posts

Top