The Green party in Munich says the city’s use of the Linux operating system is wrongly being blamed for all IT issues. “The problem is usually not the operating system, but something else”, says Florian Roth, leader of the city’s Green Party. The party wants to increase support for the city’s central IT department, to bolster the open source strategy.
“We continue to support Linux as the best option”, the Greens announced in a statement published in January. Roth, reached by phone, said the statement was intended to counterbalance an article in a local newspaper that questioned the use of Linux for the city’s workstations. The article, no longer available on the newspaper’s website, was misleading, says Roth. “The headline alleged Linux was about to be shelved, but the article itself showed the problems had little to do with the operating system.”
“It is a misconception that all IT issues have to do with our use of open source”, Roth says.
The leader of the city’s Green Party recounts how the mayor and deputy mayor, upon being elected in 2014, began denouncing the city’s open source IT strategy. The city is now doing an assessment of IT problems, which includes a staff member survey. Roth expects that the strategic use of open source to be discussed in the city council later this year.
The Greens want Munich to continue to centralise IT operations, and warn against splitting responsibilities across multiple organisations. The political group says that frictions between IT departments are wasting time and creating inefficiencies.
The city of Munich uses Linux on just over 17,000 of its 18,000 workstations.
In January, IT news site Tech Republic reported how the city will have to spend some EUR 16 million over the next four years to get rid of the last 1500 proprietary desktops workstations (including virtual desktops). Most of this will be spent on replacing the business applications that are tied to these legacy systems by modern web applications.