School District 73 Open Source Initiativeby dmonty updated November 9, 2011

Since 2001 School District 73 has been using Open Software solutions. Implementing Open Software is not instantaneous. We start with one site that is willing to pilot new software, when it is successful then other sites ask to have their computers upgraded. It is important to give people time to adjust and have keen staff help others with Open Solutions. Over several years we slowly grew Open Software in the following order:

  • Servers: web, database, file, printer.
  • Elementary School labs for students.
  • High School labs for students.
  • Teacher and Administrator workstations.

Currently we have about 52 schools/facilities that run Open Software. All of our schools run Linux on both Student and Teacher desktops.

Our Linux Desktops run as Diskless Clients and cost under $200CAD per machine. They offer all of the same features as a regular desktop. We can run about 200 Diskless Clients off of one school server. Students and Staff can log in from home to access not just files but desktop and software as well. With the centralized model we do full school backup off-site every night. Backups give students and staff peace of mind knowing they can have files restored from any past date. We provide training and support for Staff through on-site training and our eHelp Website.

Here is a list of some of the free/open software technologies that we use: Debian, Ubuntu/Kubuntu/Studio, Arch, Gentoo, Free BSD, RedHat, MySQL, PHP, OpenOffice, Linux Terminal Server Project, Diskless Clients, Dansguardian, Squid, Zimbra, Wordpress, Moodle, Cyrus, Squirrelmail, Blender 3D Animation, Scribus, Qcad, Cycus, kdenlive, xmms, ardour, and more...

If you have any questions visit our website and contact Dean Montgomery:
SD73 Open Source in Education