Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 27th Jul 2007 22:57 UTC
Hardware, Embedded Systems Mark Shuttleworth has announced that Dell will expand its Linux offerings. "What's been announced to date is not the full extent of what we will see over the next couple of weeks and months," Shuttleworth said an interview late on Wednesday. "There are additional offerings in the pipeline," he said. Shuttleworth founded Canonical to provide support for Ubuntu Linux. A Dell spokeswoman, Anne Camden, declined comment, saying the company does not discuss products in the pipeline.
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Correction
by KenJackson on Fri 27th Jul 2007 23:18 UTC
KenJackson
Member since:
2005-07-18

The Linux operating system is seen as the biggest threat to Microsoft's Windows operating system.


That's not quite right. GNU/Linux is the biggest threat to Windows' near monopoly status. Ending a monopoly or anything like it is a very good thing for consumers. But in spite of the rivalry, no one thinks Windows will be knocked out.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Correction
by tpaws on Sat 28th Jul 2007 01:48 UTC in reply to "Correction"
tpaws Member since:
2006-06-02

Hmmm. I really have to wonder at why you were modded down for this? I give you a plus 1 for making an appropriate correction to a statement in a news article for the purpose of discussion.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Correction
by SReilly on Sat 28th Jul 2007 03:50 UTC in reply to "RE: Correction"
SReilly Member since:
2006-12-28

I give both of you a +1.

As far as I am concerned, we Linux heads are far too often in need of a kick in the rear end when it comes to this kind of discussion.

I'm happy that Dell is moving towards a larger Linux offering and I wish them the best of luck with it.

Just because an idea does not herald the imminent coming of the Linux desktop does mean that it is not invalid, never mind untrue.

Reply Score: 5

Ubuntu
by mcduck on Fri 27th Jul 2007 23:23 UTC
mcduck
Member since:
2005-11-23

Shuttleworth said sales of the three Dell Ubuntu PC models were on track to meet the sales projections of Dell and Canonical.

This is great news! Hopefully sales will continue to grow.

Now if only Blizzard would release World of Warcraft for linux, we would achieve world domination....

Reply Score: 5

RE: Ubuntu
by n0xx on Sat 28th Jul 2007 02:02 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu"
n0xx Member since:
2005-07-12

WoW runs like a charm through wine. I know, cause i run it all the time! ;) It's not as fast as on Windows, but it does the trick. And on more recent hardware you shouldn't even feel a performance hit. I even think that, out of the box and using the default setting on both systems, WoW has crispier colors when you run it through wine (what doesn't? >:> ).

But still, I reckon that running anything through a compatibility layer is never the best solution. This game in particular had a native Linux version in development and Blizzard released a few betas of the Linux client but then they sacked the whole project all together. Which leads me and my tin-foil to believe that some well known company from Redmond Washington may have put some pressure on Blizzard not to release the most anticipated MMORPG ever on a competing platform. After all, it wouldn't be the first time Microsoft employs scare tactics to prevent another company from investing in the competition (BeOS, anyone?).

To this day, you can edit a file on your WoW installation and make the the game run through the good old cross platform OpenGL back end, even on Windows.

Edited 2007-07-28 02:03

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by anda_skoa on Sat 28th Jul 2007 12:40 UTC in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

Which leads me and my tin-foil to believe that some well known company from Redmond Washington may have put some pressure on Blizzard not to release the most anticipated MMORPG ever on a competing platform.


While this is not impossible there has been a slightly different hint from a German game publisher (he didn't say it was about WoW because he was under NDA, but it was pretty obvious nonetheless)

He said that they got contacted by this must-not-be-named game company about distribution of a new game on Linux, but they requested some guarantees the publisher could not handle (e.g. something like expect to sell at least 100000 units)

Perhaps this initial plan to sell a Linux client is one of the reasons they "support" playing it through Wine/Cedega.
Would be nice to have the real client though.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by beowuff on Sat 28th Jul 2007 14:43 UTC in reply to "RE: Ubuntu"
beowuff Member since:
2006-07-26

"Which leads me and my tin-foil to believe that some well known company from Redmond Washington may have put some pressure on Blizzard not to release the most anticipated MMORPG ever on a competing platform."

What, like the Mac?

Reply Score: 1

Not worried anymore
by Extreme Coder on Sat 28th Jul 2007 00:58 UTC
Extreme Coder
Member since:
2007-07-26

"Shuttleworth said sales of the three Dell Ubuntu PC models were on track to meet the sales projections of Dell and Canonical."

"She added that Dell was pleased with customer response to its Linux PCs. She said Dell believed the bulk of the machines were sold to open-source software enthusiasts, while some first-time Linux users have purchased them as well."

I was worried that Dell would announce shortly that their Linux PC sales were very poor and they'd cancel the whole idea.
Glad to see the opposite has happened.

Reply Score: 5

Johnny come lately
by polyex on Sat 28th Jul 2007 01:25 UTC
polyex
Member since:
2007-07-11

Dell really is a slow moving corporate giant. While it is nice to see them embracing (sort of) linux, I can not help but think they are playing it so safe that Dell is pretty far from being innovative or a leader in this regard. They may sell many PC's but so does Apple, Dell is pretty lame IMHO compared to other outifts out there, they are just popular not necessarily good. Don't get me wrong , its sort of nice to see anything that eats away at the copycat garbage-ware monopoly that Microsoft and its unpaid fan-boys have stifled the PC industry with for almost two decades. I just think its silly to think that the dull suits at Dell are some sort of saviours for Linux on the desktop. But I guess beggars cant be choosers either, and hopefully something good will start from this sort of thing. Just don't be surprised if Dell pulls the plug early.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Johnny come lately
by butters on Sat 28th Jul 2007 03:48 UTC in reply to "Johnny come lately"
butters Member since:
2005-07-08

I'm not sure that Dell is significantly less innovative than any of the other OEMs besides possibly Apple. Yeah, the PC industry is dull and boring right now. Everybody is waiting on Intel to lead the way, which is beginning to happen, but it will take a couple years for the post-PC client to take shape. There's a lot of lead time since there's no insurgent platform vendor prototyping next-generation clients.

Transmeta kind of died and VIA isn't exciting anyone with their low-capability "chubby clients". The closest thing we have to viable client innovation is the new generation of consoles, which are severely challenged as general-purpose media clients due to DRM and format wars.

So the challenge for OEMs is to look like they're innovating. Apple is doing well by using MacOS to differentiate their fairly vanilla PC product line. Alternative operating systems are a good value-add for OEMs that want to court higher-end consumers that are looking for something unique. Linux is an excellent underdog story with a lot of positive PR potential. It has a strong cult following and a lot of friends in the blogosphere and analyst communities.

Dell is doing a good job so far. They seem to understand the demographics. Linux won't succeed as a Windows clone for cheapskates. They have to sell it as an alternative for demanding, intelligent, progressive individuals that value choice and independence. In other words, Apple for those that like a little populism with their liberal elitism. The target market is self-selecting and proactive. Dell just needs to gently raise awareness to pull the consumers to their site. These people are cynical, so push marketing would be a bad idea.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Johnny come lately
by kaiwai on Sat 28th Jul 2007 13:22 UTC in reply to "Johnny come lately"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

Dell really is a slow moving corporate giant. While it is nice to see them embracing (sort of) linux, I can not help but think they are playing it so safe that Dell is pretty far from being innovative or a leader in this regard. They may sell many PC's but so does Apple, Dell is pretty lame IMHO compared to other outifts out there, they are just popular not necessarily good. Don't get me wrong , its sort of nice to see anything that eats away at the copycat garbage-ware monopoly that Microsoft and its unpaid fan-boys have stifled the PC industry with for almost two decades. I just think its silly to think that the dull suits at Dell are some sort of saviours for Linux on the desktop. But I guess beggars cant be choosers either, and hopefully something good will start from this sort of thing. Just don't be surprised if Dell pulls the plug early.


You've made some good points; also another thing to remember, this isn't the first time that Dell has offered Linux equiped machines - and they have pulled them prematurely.

The problem with these companies, they want instant gratification - they want, through some divine intervention, for Linux sales to zoom up to 1million units per quarter rather than viewing it as a long term project that will require Dell to work with software and harware vendors to improving the quality and quantity of third party hardware support and software availability.

I think that also the biggest enemy of Linux is the linux fanboys itself - look at the verbal abuse coming from the Linux camp towards *BSD and Solaris, for example - proclaiming lies that go from 'not free enough' to 'not fully opensource'.

As for what I'd love to see - I'd love to see Sun release a pizza box size desktop, everything integrated, pre-loaded with Solaris, and sold through their customers - their customers purchase desktops for their organisations, and their customers employees purchase the desktops at a discount - it avoids the whole need for consumer support and sales, and would boost the bottom line.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Johnny come lately
by elsewhere on Sun 29th Jul 2007 04:16 UTC in reply to "RE: Johnny come lately"
elsewhere Member since:
2005-07-13

You've made some good points; also another thing to remember, this isn't the first time that Dell has offered Linux equiped machines - and they have pulled them prematurely.


This point comes up a lot, but let's also keep things in perspective; although the Microsoft bugaboo may have come into play with the Dell / Red Hat initiative, let's also remember that Red Hat at that point in time was hardly poised to be an actively sought-after desktop replacement for Windows.

*buntu isn't my particularly favorite distro, but even having said that, I'd still say it's in a better position as a desktop platform than Red Hat was 10 years ago or so, when Linux was still in it's relative infancy.

Of course, the community has much sharper teeth now as well, so if Dell thinks they can quietly walk away two or three quarters from now because MS has thrown some extra MDF at them, then they'll face significantly more outrage than they did back then.

Regardless, will be interesting to see how everything pans out.

Reply Score: 2

Good News
by tpaws on Sat 28th Jul 2007 02:24 UTC
tpaws
Member since:
2006-06-02

The Dell / Ubuntu partnership, if you will, showing success is a wonderful thing. In spite of all the arguing and rampant flame-wars so commonly seen in discussions about OS's and Software, this is a ray of light in the darkness. It is notable that there are no sales figures quoted, after all any number would be immediately assailed as "poor", "woefully inadequte", "another sign that Linux is far from ready for the desktop", or some other nonsense.

Dell is experiencing positive sales with Ubuntu (and Red Hat). HP is stepping in deeper, and no doubt others will follow in the not too distant future. Wal-Mart is looking at getting back in to the pre-loaded Linux business, and no doubt other retailers will look more seriously at Wal-Marts enhanced second round.

The following link tells a lot about Mark Shuttleworth and Ubuntu. It is a philosophy for success that is working now and will only improve:

http://news.zdnet.co.uk/hardware/0,1000000091,39288267,00.htm

Reply Score: 2

Not so fast...
by Googlesaurus on Sat 28th Jul 2007 03:31 UTC
Googlesaurus
Member since:
2005-10-19

Something makes me wonder how many of these systems are now running XP......

My guess.... MANY.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Not so fast...
by archiesteel on Sat 28th Jul 2007 04:08 UTC in reply to "Not so fast..."
archiesteel Member since:
2005-07-02

Why would someone go to the trouble of getting a Ubuntu Dell PC to replace the OS with XP? It's not as if the Ubuntu PCs are much cheaper than the Windows counterpart.

Methinks you are simply letting your bias cloud your judgement here...

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: Not so fast...
by cyclops on Sat 28th Jul 2007 07:13 UTC in reply to "RE: Not so fast..."
cyclops Member since:
2006-03-12

"Methinks you are simply letting your bias cloud your judgement here..."

I think its more interesting that the "bias" he uses is XP not Vista as an example. I wonder when Vista will be ready for the Desktop. Especially since they have certified rather a lot of devices since launch, they cannot use *drivers* as an excuse anymore, those days are gone...and an OEM chooses the hardware that work well in their machines, and come with little stickers to prove it.

Although I actually suspect that by an order of magnitude more XP machines dual-boot or are Dedicated Ubuntu machines than those sold by Dell, and an awful lot of those will be from Dell.

Reply Score: 7

RE: Not so fast...
by lemur2 on Sat 28th Jul 2007 07:14 UTC in reply to "Not so fast..."
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Something makes me wonder how many of these systems are now running XP......

My guess.... MANY.


You aren't very good at guessing, are you?

(1) If someone wanted XP, that is available form Dell on the same machine at a very similar price. Getting XP on your Dell machine this way is not only "genuine", it is far less trouble.

(2) If someone who was competent in installing an OS was buying the machine, why would they get one with Ubuntu then put XP on it? It is far easier to get one with XP and then put Ubuntu on the machine. It is also easier to make a dual boot machine by starting with one that has Windows on it in the first place.

Deliberately getting an Ubuntu machine from Dell (at just about the same purchase price as a legal XP Dell machine) then wiping Ubuntu and putting an illegal copy of XP on it makes no sense at all. You would have to be a certified loon to do that.

You didn't think your comment through very well, now did you?

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Not so fast...
by elsewhere on Sun 29th Jul 2007 04:08 UTC in reply to "RE: Not so fast..."
elsewhere Member since:
2005-07-13


You aren't very good at guessing, are you?

(1) If someone wanted XP, that is available form Dell on the same machine at a very similar price. Getting XP on your Dell machine this way is not only "genuine", it is far less trouble.

(2) If someone who was competent in installing an OS was buying the machine, why would they get one with Ubuntu then put XP on it? It is far easier to get one with XP and then put Ubuntu on the machine. It is also easier to make a dual boot machine by starting with one that has Windows on it in the first place.


Actually, having dealt with both Dell and HP machines "out of the box", I'd probably take the *buntu version, save $30 or whatever and throw my own copy of XP or Vista on it (assuming I needed a Windows machine). Not only would it save money, but it would save time from having to delete the crapware, because a clean install is easier and faster.

If I was a non-*buntu user, I'd also buy the *buntu version, save $30 or whatever and throw my distro of choice on top of it.

I'm happy that Dell is acknowledging the existence of linux, but let's be serious, they are not making a commitment here, it's a publicity play. When they make the effort to actually include documentation and fancy foldouts that includes references to Ubuntu rather than Windows, that would be a step. Right now, they haven't done anything more than simply pre-install a free download. A good step, to be certain, but hardly a ringing endorsement.

It's good buzz for the community, but until Dell actually invests some dollars rather than directing users to the forums or Canonical for a paid contract, whenever anything goes wrong, it's an empty gesture in the long run.

Maybe I'm overly cynical, but I can't believe for one second that Dell has actually attracted non-linux users to purchasing a linux-based system. They haven't marketed it and they've done nothing to differentiate it. Any success they're getting is simply from existing linux users or people escaping the Windows tax. Good for Dell, but hardly an paradigm shifting advancement.

I'll still give them props, though, because even baby steps are still a step forward.

EDIT: Typo

Edited 2007-07-29 04:09 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Not so fast...
by Soulbender on Mon 30th Jul 2007 06:20 UTC in reply to "Not so fast..."
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

"Something makes me wonder how many of these systems are now running XP"

I wonder how many of the XP systems sold are now running something else.

Reply Score: 3