International Space Station (ISS) switches to Linux

From big cities to giant MNCs to drones, Linux is finding new takers from every nook and corner of the world. The reliability-factor, cost-effectiveness and open source nature of Linux are solid enough reasons to convince these massive organisations to make the switch. This story might be a bit old (2013) but nevertheless worth knowing. International Space Station (ISS) also joins the Linux bandwagon, while terming Windows 'unreliable'. 

International Space Station (ISS) switches to Linux

International Space Station switches from Windows to Linux
United Kingdom, City of Turin (Italy), City of Toulose (France), NASA, ASIMO Robotics, world's fastest supercomputer, Google, I could go on. The number of countries, cities and organisations that has adopted Linux and other open source solutions are simply staggering. And the changes are only starting to get traction in my opinion. See what International Space Station has to say about their switch from Windows to Linux.

The United Space Alliance, which manages the computers aboard the International Space Station in association with NASA, has announced that the Windows XP computers aboard the ISS have been switched to Linux. "We migrated key functions from Windows to Linux because we needed an operating system that was stable and reliable."

In specific, the "dozens of laptops" will make the change to Debian 6. These laptops will join many other systems aboard the ISS that already run various flavors of Linux, such as RedHat and Scientific Linux. As far as we know, after this transition, there won’t be a single computer aboard the ISS that runs Windows.

Beyond stability and reliability, Keith Chuvala of the United Space Alliance says they wanted an operating system that "would give us in-house control. So if we needed to patch, adjust or adapt, we could." It’s worth noting that the ISS laptops used to run Windows XP, and we know they’ve been infected by at least one virus in their lifetime: in 2008, a Russian cosmonaut brought a laptop aboard with the W32.Gammima.AG worm, which quickly spread to the other laptops on board. Switching to Linux will essentially immunize the ISS against future infections.

[Read full story at ExtremeTech]