[sf-lug] Progress at the school with Linux

Christian Einfeldt einfeldt at gmail.com
Tue Dec 2 22:56:03 PST 2008


I wanted to let you all know of some decent progress that we made at the
school project in SF.  The 7th grade science teacher had a Windows virus.
Crashed his notebook.  Wouldn't boot up.  heh.  So he asked me for help.  I
told him we could install Linux and all would be well.  He said he needs a
couple of Windows apps.  I said we could dual boot Windows and Linux for

I got the notebook from him.  I wiped the drive by installing Intrepid
Ubuntu.  I then tried to install Windows XP over it.  No luck.  Daniel G
figured it out and installed XP and then installed Intrepid.  Now the
teacher is happy as a clam, and is using Ubuntu as his primary OS.  I told
him that he should try to note use Windows very much, or he will just get a
virus again.  He understands.

This is a rather important step for this school.  Until now, no
mission-critical functions were being carried out on Linux, just student
computer use, which is not considered mission-critical.  (Odd, huh?).  This
school considers only teacher computer work to be mission critical: grades,
lesson plans.  Student use of the Xubuntu lab and the Linux computers in the
classrooms is considered important, but ultimately expendable if need be.
Only teacher work on computers is considered non-expendable.

So here we have one teacher who has actually solicited help with a Linux
install.  He specifically came to me (as opposed to me pushing him) because
we have been talking about a dual boot solution for him for more than one
year.  He felt that this issue with the virus crashing his Windows machine
was the last straw.  He knew it was time to get serious about getting Linux.

If this pilot project works well, other teachers might consider coming to me
for similar help when the inevitable happens and their Windows machines are
crashed by malware.  We could experience a mini digital tipping point at
this public middle school, which would be nice, for a couple of reasons:
first, this school's computing experiences are being followed by the city
legislator responsible for this district.  Second, we get lots of visitors
to this school from other schools, so stuff that happens here could spread
to other schools.  In fact, another school is coming to see our Xubuntu lab
on Thursday.  This person has been trying to get Free Open Source Solutions
into other schools.  She is visiting with the hopes that she can show this
model to other schools.

I know a lot of people on this list have helped out a lot with this school
project, not the least of which is Daniel G., so I wanted to thank you all
for helping out and to give you the good news.

c u

Christian Einfeldt
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