Christopher Tozzi


Christopher Tozzi has covered the channel for The VAR Guy on a freelance basis since 2008, with an emphasis on open source, Linux, virtualization, SDN, containers, data storage and related topics. He also teaches history at a major university in Washington, D.C. He occasionally combines these interests by writing about the history of software. His book on this topic, For Fun and Profit: A History of the Free and Open Source Software Revolution, is forthcoming with MIT Press.

Why Microsoft's Windows Subsystem for Linux Is Not As Novel As It Sounds 1

Microsoft is rolling out production-grade support for running Linux apps on Windows via Windows Subsystem for Linux. Here's what the announcement means -- and why it's not actually a very big deal.

Managed IT Services: How MSPs Can Survive the Automation Revolution
The world is becoming increasingly automated. For MSPs, this means the key to success is identifying processes that can't be automated and building service offerings around them.
Bad Taste Attack Brings Windows Malware to Linux (Theoretically)

Windows and Linux are getting along better than ever -- so much so that attackers can now use Windows installation scripts to drop malware onto Linux computers, one researcher has found.

Earlier this month, Nils Dagsson Moskopp reported a vulnerability that he named Bad Taste. It works like this:

What DevOps Means for Channel Partnerships
What DevOps Means for Channel Partnerships

DevOps is all the rage these days, from startups to enterprises. If you're not doing DevOps, you're not only missing out on important efficiencies -- you may also be losing partners and channel influence. Here's why.

Briefly put, DevOps is an approach to software design and delivery that emphasizes being agile. Being agile means having people, processes and tools that can scale easily, be reorganized or reconfigured quickly and deliver software updates on a rapid, near-continuous basis.

Why Is Docker So Popular? Explaining the Rise of Containers and Docker
Why Is Docker So Popular? Explaining the Rise of Containers and Docker

By now, you've almost certainly heard of Docker containers. You know Docker is massively popular. But do you know why? Here's a look at the factors driving tremendous interest in Docker today.

Before delving into a discussion of the factors behind Docker's popularity, it's worth noting that Docker is not the only container platform out there. Nor was it the first to come along.

The New Open Source Business Model: Trading Code for Personal Data
The New Open Source Business Model: Trading Code for Personal Data

How do companies make money with open source software? Increasingly, the answer is that they use open source programs to collect personal information from users. Here's how this new open source business strategy is changing the channel.

What Do Continuous Delivery Servers Like Shippable Mean for MSPs?
DevOps vendor Shippable has announced general availability of its enterprise continuous delivery platform, Shippable Server.
Understanding Docker's Enterprise Services Offerings
Docker, Inc. is famous for developing a container framework. But because the core Docker software is available for free, Docker relies on professional management services to make money.
Why Does Open Source Really Matter? It's about Control, Not Code

Why is open source software so popular today? You might think it's about money, open standards or interoperability. But the most important factor behind the success of open source is its ability to offer control.

Managed Services and Cloud Hosting: What the Leading Cloud Hosts Offer
From Rackspace to AWS to Azure, there's no shortage of cloud hosting platforms available today.
6 Technologies and Trends that are Reshaping the IT Channel

Technologies like blockchain, serverless computing and unikernels are redefining the way organizations deploy applications and consume technology.

The Past, Present and Future of the GPL in Open Source Software

Today, many programmers and companies are passing on the GPL in favor of alternative open source licenses./p>

Everything-as-a-Service Exceptions: Things that Don't Work as a Service 1
There are still a few things in the tech world that don't work well when delivered as a service.
Predictive Policing and Software Freedom: Should the Police Use Open Source?

Open source software is now widespread almost everywhere, from servers to smartphones. But there's one place where open source is still not common: The world of policing.

7 Blockchain Storage, Media and Coin Projects You Should Know

Bitcoin is the most famous blockchain project. But it's hardly the only one. Blockchain technology is reshaping a number of ecosystems -- from finance to digital media to data storage.

When Not to Use Docker: Understanding the Limitations of Containers
August 24, 2017

Good points. On 2) I'd point out that even an app written in a cross-platform scripting language like Python may have OS dependencies that prevent you from running the same...

From Food to Sofas: How Open Source is Changing the World Beyond Software
February 3, 2017

"Free software" -- which a lot of people would characterize as similar to, but not quite the same thing as, "open source software" -- originated well before 1998. But the...

Open Source Software's Top Five Challenges for 2017
January 13, 2017

Personal experience :) I am remembering a wireless card I owned (some kind of D-Link -- I forget the exact chip) that only worked with ndiswrapper, and it would crash after an...

5 Ways Open Source Programmers and Companies Make Money
June 10, 2016

Good point. This was drafted a while ago, before the ownCloud kerfuffle in April.

IoT Past and Present: The History of IoT, and Where It's Headed Today
May 3, 2016

Thanks for the pointer. I am unable to find proof that the Electrolux ever actually made it to market, though. A February 1999 Wired article (

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