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[20080406] Convincing your nearest Pointy-Haired Boss of NetBSD
Joel Carnat pointed me over at the OpenBSD lists, on which a discussion on how to get your employer to understand and possble switch operating systems. I guess the matter at fact is also of importance to NetBSD, and there are a number of items that apply to NetBSD as well, just in case you are looking how to convince your boss to drop that OpenBSD^WLinux box.

Nick Holland has posted a number of items which were edited here, see the link for full information:

  • Respect the work that has come before you.
  • Prove to them that you know what you are doing on OTHER things. Give them reason to trust your judgment and quality of work.
  • Prove to them that you can (and do) document the systems you are responsible for.
  • Point out the relative "unknownness" of various products already in your environment.
  • Point out that people who know NetBSD may not be falling out of trees, people who REALLY know Linux, Solaris, Cisco, Juniper, EMC, Xiotech, Windows, etc. WELL are not common, either.
  • Show how easy it is to BUILD your own experts.
  • Point out that there are a lot of people LOOKING for experts in these "industry standard" systems, and they are not finding good ones.
  • Demonstrate, don't talk.
  • Hook your co-workers.
  • Solve real problems with NetBSD.
  • Document your systems REALLY WELL.
  • Your documentation should include the things your boss is afraid of, such as what happens if you vanish and no one else has the root password.
  • Make sure the solution does not tie them to you.
  • Design your system right. Keep it simple, reliable, maintainable, documented and make sure it can survive past you.
Also, "Matt" adds a number of tricks on how to convince your boss. Abbreviated strongly here as well, see Matt's posting for the full version with all the details:
  • TRICK 1: Expensive beats free
  • TRICK 2: Fear beats comfortable with what we have
  • TRICK 3: Trustworthy beats unknown
  • TRICK 4: Being cool beats missing the boat
  • TRICK 5: Action beats promise
  • TRICK 6: Having toys beats 'not interesting'
While the mails were written with OpenBSD in mind, I think much of them apply to NetBSD as well. I'm not sure I agree 100% with all things said, but it's definitely a very good approach that more people should take! Send your testimonials about how your company switched to NetBSD to www @ NetBSD . org (feel free to put me on CC :-).

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