Momentary lapse of life

R/C, PC Security, and anything else that interests me at the time… | One small business’s year without Windows | One small business’s year without Windows: “My company, Adams-Blake Co., started its business life on a Macintosh platform and moved to Windows in 1995. By late 2001, administration had gone from a chore to a nightmare. When it was again time to upgrade we decided to change to Linux. We began with Mandrake, then tried Slackware, and now run a few machines with Mepis. We’ve always had a challenge to see if we could not use Windows for an entire year. We’ve never been able to do it — until now.

All of our other business functions are covered with Linux. On the desktop, we use Moneydance for accounting. We use Microsoft Word under the CodeWeavers CrossOver Office, and for spreadsheets and presentations. We use the GIMP for graphics and Quanta and Bluefish for editing Web pages. We prepare our payroll with PayCycle. On the server side we keep media lists on MySQL using the phpMyAdmin front end. We wish we had an Access-like front end to MySQL so we could quickly write more complex apps. Finally, we use our own Jaya123 Web service to run order entry, reporting, and invoicing.

However, there was no acceptable way to do taxes on Linux. The software we tried did not run well under CrossOver Office, Wine, or Win2Lin.

This year we did our personal taxes online using TaxAct. For our corporate 1120 forms we used the IRS fill-in forms with the new Adobe Reader 7.0 for Linux. This was not as optimal as using tax software, but small corporate taxes are easy, and preparing them via fill-in forms was not difficult. Maybe next year there will be an online service for small business 1120 forms that works with Firefox under Linux; today most require Internet Explorer.”


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