Is your career dependant on the operating system that you support?

By Doug Chick

If suddenly one day, the president of your company announced that he just struck a deal to change all the servers operating systems in your company to “Serversoft” (trademark pending) what would you do exactly? Furthermore, what if your company started hiring people that were Serversoft certified, (trademark pending) that had no real life computer experience and were paid more than you? How likely is that to happen? Ask a Novell Administrator.

The world of computers moves quickly, and the fact that many network administrators today don’t know that Novell used to hold 80 percent of the server operating system market tells you just how quickly it does move. Fortunately for me,  I lived in Redmond WA, at the time and saw Microsoft make a move on the server operating system market and I grabbed an NT 3.5 book that my neighbor happened to be one of the authors on, and held on tight while my friends laughed saying that it would never happen. In fact, my brother-in-law was studying to become a Novell CNE at the same time I was taking the 3.5 test. My point is not to say I told you so, Mark. My point is to say, if you are going to stay in this business you better be flexible enough to change. You can’t just be a master of one system and expect to survive. I’m not saying that Sun or Microsoft are by any means weak, but you never know where the wind will blow in the world of computers. IBM is an off shoot of NCR, or so the story goes, Microsoft was launched with IBM money, and maybe ServerSoft, (trademark pending) will one day steal Microsoft’s thunder. 

As many hours as I’ve logged with NT 4, and as much as I like Windows 2000 Advanced Server, one day soon, like many Novell Administrators, I might find myself abandoning the familiar for something that resembles the PlayStation.

Doug Chick
MCSE, CCNA. 
Network Administrator

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