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Don't be put off by some of the childish responses you have received on this forum. If I were an outsider to the world of Open Source, I would be put off by the venom and distinct lack of helpfulness shown here.
People here need to understand that when a individual or company are thinking about making the move away from proprietary software, they need support. You could not show the above responses to a CIO as proof that his IT infrastructure will be in good hands.
Having said that, try not to be discouraged. There are a lot of professional Open Source advocates out there who have gone through puberty.
In your situation I would start looking at alternative distributions that are more in tune with corporate thinking. Someone here suggested Xandros, another OpenSuse. There are also free re-compiles of Red Hat Enterprise that would be worth looking at.
You may find (no promises) that your printer drivers are more likely to be supported as well.
Exchange server support within Evolution definitely needs more work. I have usually just used the webmail client from within a web browser. This is especially true of accessing e-mail across a VPN connection.
If you have certain software that does not work under Wine, and there is no Linux equivalent, you may like to look at a Citrix based solution. Whilst not open source (or cheap) there is a Linux client and it will cut down on your implementation time.