Linux Ranks No. 2 On Microsoft Risk List

The open-source operating system trailed only the economic environment in the biggest risks outlined by CFO John Connors.

Microsoft is taking the Linux threat seriously. So seriously, in fact, that open-source software comes in at the No. 2 spot on the company's top five list of risks. In a teleconference to go over the Redmond, Wash.-based developer's fourth quarter and fiscal 2003 results on Thursday, CFO John Connors detailed the five biggest risks to his company's business. "The general economic environment is risk and driver No. 1," he said. "Linux and non-commercial software is risk No. 2."

The rest of the top five, Connors said, are growing the installed base in today's tight-spending climate, litigation, and executing plans on multiple fronts. "I'm a bit surprised that Linux comes in at number two on their list," said Michael Cherry, an analyst with Directions on Microsoft, an independent research firm that tracks Microsoft's products and strategies. "I might have flipped Nos. 2 and 3. But when you think about it, Linux falls in the same category as the attempt to grow the installed base," he said, going on to lump the two into what he calls "just good enough."

News source: InformationWeek

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