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Yes true and that is another fundamental question we need to answer…
Do we go enterprise supported distro because if so there may not be much customisation apart from the standard image, and yes there would be a cost to roll it out across government? Less than Windows, but we lose the maximisation of savings.
Other option is a free distro that “we” establish as standard distro for SA gov (something with broad support like Ubuntu, CentOS, OpenSuse, etc). We could have ourselves and local industry build up expertise and support capability on it. But there are downsides like it won’t have enterprise support when needed, and it won’t be certified to run SAP and some other enterprise software.
Or do we separate server side (maybe needing enterprise support) from desktop installs – probably a good idea to separate. Separating servers and desktops gives u more flexibility. The two areas are probably two different strategies to tackle.