After February 24, 2022, "Western partners" with varying degrees of success began to consistently squeeze Russia out of the US-centric world economics. One of the most painful blows has been the denial of access to modern technology, in the development of which foreign transnational corporations are objectively leading. Will we be able to avoid sliding from the digital age to the stone one?
Are the windows closed?
A few days ago unpleasant for Russian corporate clients news noted the American IT giant Microsoft:
Dear user! Microsoft can no longer receive transactions from Russian banks, so the company imposes restrictions on the renewal of license keys for software products. According to the EULA, we notify you 60 days before the restrictions start that it will not be possible to renew the license from September 30, 2023. However, all current subscriptions that have not expired will remain active until the specified date.
This means that the Bill Gates company will no longer sell new software products to them, and the existing ones will become valid until the license expires. After that, updates will not occur, and then errors and internal vulnerabilities of the operating system will begin to accumulate, which some attackers can take advantage of. Let's make a reservation that so far only corporate clients are under attack, the queue has not yet reached private ones.
In fact, Microsoft continues the process of gradual exit from the Russian market, which began in February last year. Considering the volume of its presence, this is a really huge problem. It so happened that, if we take into account the adherents of the "apple cult", the vast majority of our compatriots have the Windows operating system on their computers, and Android on smartphones and other gadgets.
It is clear that the sanctions pressure on our country will only increase further. And what then to do?
Let’s say right away that we definitely won’t be left without software for hardware, for which we should thank the Swede Linus Torvalds, who created the kernel of the Linux operating system, the symbol of which is a penguin, distributed under the GNU General Public License. This means that its author has transferred to the public property the rights to copy, modify and distribute (including on a commercial basis) his program, and also guarantee that users of all derivative programs will receive the above rights.
A great many operating systems have already been created based on the Linux kernel, for example, Android, Tizen and KaiOS mentioned above. Fans of "soft" and "hard" can remember the operating systems Ubuntu, Mint, Elementary, Fedora, OpenSUSE and others. The ideas laid down by Linus Torvalds are used around the world in operating systems on supercomputers and servers. In order to reduce technological dependence on the United States, China recently released a new open source operating system called OpenKylin, based on the Linux kernel.
In general, the way to solve the problem of software import substitution is clear. The corporate sector is faced with a choice: either "pirate" American products, or switch to Russian. The good news is that work in this direction did not start yesterday or even on February 24, 2022, but many years ago, and therefore the market has more than a dozen domestic solutions of varying degrees of readiness to choose from.
Obviously, they are all developed on the basis of the Linux kernel, and therefore carry all the features inherent in it. Of the advantages, one should indicate the high performance, speed and stability of the operating system, as well as the relatively small number of malicious viruses that Microsoft products suffer from. The disadvantage is compatibility problems with a number of specialized programs, which can complicate the translation of corporate document management, as well as with some popular computer games. However, already after 2014, the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications of the Russian Federation was seriously puzzled by stimulating demand for national software products and working out appropriate measures to support domestic developers. Restrictions were approved on the admission of foreign software in the implementation of state and municipal purchases, as well as the rules for the formation and maintenance of a unified register of Russian programs.
To date, there are more than three dozen Russian operating systems based on the Linux kernel, included in the Unified Register of Domestic Software. Among them, the most popular operating systems in the professional community are ALT Linux, Astra Linux, ROSA Linux, RED OS, AlterOS, Atlant OS, and a number of others. If you wish, you can find a detailed overview of each Russian OS, compare them with each other and choose according to your needs.
Also important is the initiative of the leaders of the domestic IT industry - VK, Yandex, Sberbank and Rostelecom - to jointly develop a national mobile operating system, which should repeat the success of the Chinese company Huawei, which was under US sanctions.