First experience with Windows Server

July 21, 2009

I’ve been using Windows for years in the desktop (from 3.1 to Vista). Of course I prefer Linux, but it’s true that sometimes Windows have some advantages over it in a few points (Linux has many others :P).

Today, I had my first experience with Windows as a server (Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition). I wanted it to serve as Domain Controller. Well, it’s not difficult, but it’s really painful. You spend several minutes clicking “next” buttons on a few wizards, watching progress bars, choosing lots of options… And finally, when it’s ready, you try to add a new user to the domain and after 10 tries you get tired because all passwords are rejected due to “insecurity”.

I spent a couple of minutes trying to find where to edit the password policy with no luck.

You’ll probably say that I have no idea about Windows. Yes, it’s true. But if you have used eBox you already know that you can deploy a Domain Controller in less than two minutes, just accessing the web interface and enabling the proper module (one click), and then you press the “save changes” button and you are ready to add users from the “Add User” menu in the same interface (intuitive, isn’t it?) and changing the password policy settings (new feature on eBox 1.2) is also immediate.

Is Windows Active Directory more powerful? Yes, that is probably true. However, let’s think about a typical small or medium bussiness, do you think they use all windows server “advanced features”? I don’t think so, and remember that eBox is constantly evolving.

I think that free software wins once again. But that’s only my opinion. Is it yours too?