Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Network issues

I realized something about the network her at work today. We have 1 full time tech guy, and the network hasn't gone down once. At my previous job, we had 5 full time tech guys, and the network went down regularly. I can't help but think that PC networks (with PC workstations) require more people to be less stable with more downtime.

One of the common arguments I hear about PCs is that they are cheaper than Macs. Lets assume a PC is $200 cheaper than a Mac. Now, some will argue that a $999 PC isn't really equal to a 1199 iMac, but that's not something we'll deal with. Lets just say $200.

We'll assume each network has 25 computers, and 25 users making $15/hour and that the tech team makes $20/hour per full time employee. For the PC network we will assume 4 hours of downtime per month which, from my experience, is pretty accurate.

5 Full time tech support = - $208,000 per year
PCs at $200 less than Mac = + $5,000 one time cost
25 user downtime for 2 hours = - $18,000.00 per year

One year of operation, assuming no replacement parts on the computers would cost:
($208,000) + ($18,000) - 5000 = $221,000

Now, for the Mac.
1 Full time tech support = $41,600
Cost saving = $0.00
25 user downtime for 0 hours = $0.00

So, the cost of 1 year of operation is $41,600.

So it looks like a PC network costs you $ 179,400 when you add in the cost of employees and downtime impacting the rest of the staff. But hey...at least you saved $200 on all those nice new machines.


Ryan said...

That's good math except for the cost of PCs. The PC price (I would guess) would be closer to $500 per. The only PCs I've ever seen go for $999 and up have been hard-core gaming PCs. I don't know if networking PCs cost that much (but, I don't know if they don't, either, so feel free to pwn me with facts that I'm too lazy to research, if you want).

Matt said...

Fair enough. That means it would only cost $171,900 more to run the PC network rather than a Mac network...for the first year.

Teddy the Labradoodle said...

Hey man, if it weren't for unstable Microsoft, I would be out of work. I need my 20 / hr.

You shouldn't say PC vs. Mac -- that's the 80s way. The Macs now have intel chips -- the biggest difference today is in the software / operating system. Mac is more stable than Windows. Linux is about the same as Mac. Linux runs on either a "PC" or a Mac.

I <3 Ubuntu Linux. Ubuntu linux is free.

Teddy the Labradoodle said...

I forgot - one more thing. The 5 tech guys at Mariners did more than just workstation support. There were over 8 servers and 200 workstations that needed support. About 3 out of 5 support employees were responsible for workstations, the other 2 for high-level projects like database stuff.

Matt said...

Well, I would argue that mac vs. pc is still a viable way to refer to the comparison as the hardware itself has a lot to do with the stability of things. Regarding the number of tech support people, 3 may be a better number than 5, but only if those three are capable of restoring the network once it has crashed. Also, here the one tech guy supports all the work stations as well. From what I have seen, PCs are simply less stable. Also, I should have included the cost of firewall/virus protection as a cost to running PCs, where it isn't a cost with Macs...yet.

Ryan said...

This isn't really a response to Matt's points (I have no response -- I lay myself pwned before thee), but I did just order myself a new computer today.

I got a barebones kit, a CPU (Athlon X2 Duo-Core 2400 somethingsomethingmorenumbers), and 2 gigs of DDR2 RAM (800 - fastest speed) for $260 shipped (go Newegg!). So now I will cannibalize my dead computer for its HDD, video card, and DVD-ROM drive for a (hopefully) stable and blazingly fast machine!

Matt said...

Nice! Grats!!

Teddy the Labradoodle said...

Let's all just agree: Ubuntu is better than Mac OR PC. :)