Open Source Forum. Yesterday - Wednesday 15 January 2003 - we had yet another meeting in the informal network called Open Source Forum. Our guest this evening was Egon Troles who is working at the Koordinierungs- und Beratungsstelle der Bundesregierung für Informationstechnik in der Bundesverwaltung, a part of the German Ministry of the Interior. Egon is heading the Open Source Software in der Bundesverwaltung project.
During the evening Egon gave a lot of very interesting and persuasive examples of projects within the German public administration where it was decided and succesfully implemented to migrate to open source serves and desktop. However, the most exiting moment of the evening was when he presented KNOPPIX which is a bootable CD with a collection of GNU/Linux software, automatic hardware detection, and support for many graphics cards, sound cards, SCSI and USB devices and other peripherals. KNOPPIX can be used as a Linux demo, educational CD, rescue system, or adapted and used as a platform for commercial software product demos. It is not necessary to install anything on a hard disk. Due to on-the-fly decompression, the CD can have up to 2 GB of executable software installed on it.
I tried today to boot my laptop from the KNOPPIX cd-rom. And it worked. Within less than two minutes I had the Linux OS, the KDE desktop and tons of applications available on my laptop. My network card was recognized and configured automatically and I had immediate access to the Internet. Fantastic! The KNOPPIX is available for free download at http://www.knopper.net/knoppix/index-en.html. Check it out!