Stories by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols

  • Is there a replacement for Facebook?

    Facebook claims to have more than 400 million active users. In fact, according to Web analytics firm Alexa, only Google is a more popular site. So, with all that going for it, why are so many users unhappy, with one poll showing that more than half of Facebook users are thinking about leaving?

  • HTML 5: Less than it's cracked up to be

    The core idea behind HTML 5, the latest proposed version of the Web's foundation markup language, is to make all resources, not just text and links, widely and uniformly usable across all platforms. Well, that was the theory. In practice, things aren't going to change that much from today's Web, with its reliance on proprietary media formats and methods.

  • CrossOver Linux 9: Run Windows apps without Windows

    Some Linux users insist that anything you can do on Windows, you can do better on Linux. While there's some truth to that, many of us have Windows applications that make completely leaving Windows close to impossible. That's where CodeWeavers' latest version of CrossOver Linux comes in.

  • Firefox 3.5: An early look

    There was a time when Firefox was the Web browser for the cool kids who knew their tech. Most would still agree that it's better than Internet Explorer, but that's damning it with faint praise. Over the last year or so, Firefox has become better known in tech savvy circles for its relatively poor performance and mediocre memory management. Chrome's insane speed and Internet Explorer 8's overall improvement have also dinged Firefox's reputation. But now, Firefox 3.5 is almost ready to go. Does it have what it takes?

  • Hands-on Linux: New versions of Ubuntu, Fedora and openSUSE

    When you're talking Linux, three big names always pop up: Canonical's Ubuntu, Novell's openSUSE and Red Hat's Fedora. Ubuntu has ridden a groundswell of both consumer and commercial support to its current ranking as the <a href="http://distrowatch.com/stats.php?section=popularity">most popular Linux distribution</a>. OpenSUSE, with its business underpinnings, has always been popular in Europe and has been making inroads in the U.S. And it is largely thanks to Fedora that Red Hat has become the biggest Linux company with a major role in community Linux.

  • Open source isn't free software

    There's a long standing argument over the differences between "open-source" software and "free" software. But, a more common error outside of software ideology circles is that you can use open-source software anyway you please. Nope. Wrong. It's never been that way.

  • High-performance nonsense

    Quiz time. Get out your No. 2 computers and answer the following question: For the fastest and most reliable high-end computing for your enterprise, will your operating system be 1) Linux, 2) Solaris, 3) OpenVMS or 4) Windows?

  • What's Red Hat Doing in the Virtualization Business?

    Even before Red Hat bought the virtualization company Qumranet, with its Linux KVM (Kernel Virtual Machine) platform, Red Hat had made it clear that it was moving into virtualization in a big way. At its annual Red Hat Summit in June, the Linux powerhouse announced that it would be deploying its Embedded Linux Hypervisor, oVirt, which is based on KVM in its server line. This lightweight, embeddable hypervisor currently enables users to run run Red Hat Enterprise Linux and Windows VMs on Linux.