Part of this story has been dereived from NewsFactor: Europe Slaps Microsoft Again.

"Many [European] governments are frustrated by the fact that Microsoft has evaded punishment for its monopolistic behavior," says Charles Homs, an Amsterdam-based analyst with Forrester Research. There's been an absolute flood on articles against Microsoft and its policies. The BeOS Stockholders Gathering has kept an eye on these developments a bit. Last Friday, Europe already demanded Microsoft for an explanation for its behaviour. Now things are finally starting to look bright for alternative operating systems.

"It has gotten to the point where it may be too late for Microsoft to play a role in providing solutions for the public sector in Europe," Homs said, pointing out that Germany already has made the move toward open source.

The French and Italian governments seem to be searching for open source software as well, but both for various reasons. France wants an operating system they can modify themselves, which is not particularly in a sense of open source, as long as they have contracts to access and modify the source code. Italy already works both on open source operating systems (with closed-source software) and on Windows (with open-source software), They want everything open source.

From what I've heard, local governments in The Netherlands have also started to work with open source operating systems, although the Dutch government still isn't released from their ties to Microsoft. For instance, about a year ago they renewed their deal with Microsoft about using Windows on schools. However, this initially caused a few problems since Microsoft was all of a sudden demanding a far higher price. Their final agreement was to let the price rise each year. I expect that the Dutch government also wants to get rid of Microsoft badly since they're heavily cutting in expenditure.

I personally think yellowTAB is coming at the right time to release their operating system. Although Zeta is not open source, it may just be well-received. Whether Zeta, Sequel, BlueEyedOS, or any other BeOS-derivate might ever become the European replacement for Windows, nobody will know. Time will tell. But one thing is much more certain now, Europe wants to get rid of the slow, unstable and vulnerable operating system for which they pay millions of Euros each year.

Sorry Microsoft, you needn't price your products in Euros any more.