Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 7th Apr 2009 07:26 UTC
Windows Continuing the recently started trend at Microsoft to be a bit more aggressive towards the competition, Brandon LeBlanc wrote on the Windows Experience Weblog about why Windows is such a huge success on netbooks compared to Linux. Also, what is up with that story on AppleInsider about Microsoft offering Windows-7-to-XP downgrade rights? Is that really so special?
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WOTN
by John Blink on Tue 7th Apr 2009 07:53 UTC
John Blink
Member since:
2005-10-11

I predict this year will be the year that we finally see Windows On The Desktop.

Reply Score: 12

RE: WOTN
by fithisux on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:41 UTC in reply to "WOTN"
fithisux Member since:
2006-01-22

:-)

Reply Score: 2

RE: WOTN
by John Blink on Wed 8th Apr 2009 02:20 UTC in reply to "WOTN"
John Blink Member since:
2005-10-11

Haha I ruined my crappy joke.

I mean't Windows On The Netbook.
:B

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: WOTN
by Liquidator on Wed 8th Apr 2009 07:08 UTC in reply to "RE: WOTN"
Liquidator Member since:
2007-03-04

I mean't


This is new ;)
Maybe a contraction of mean and not, maybe a funky spelling of the past tense of to mean (meant). Anyway, you made my day ;)

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: WOTN
by John Blink on Thu 9th Apr 2009 00:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: WOTN"
John Blink Member since:
2005-10-11

I would like to take this opportunity to embarrass myself.

Oh shut up ;)

Edited 2009-04-09 00:46 UTC

Reply Score: 2

maybe because it is free
by unclefester on Tue 7th Apr 2009 07:58 UTC
unclefester
Member since:
2007-01-13

MS is obviously giving away XP just to keep marketshare. This is hardly a sound long term strategy. MS has far greater development costs than the OSS community.

MS has just won a tender to supply schools in New South Wales Australia with laptops. They will provide a laptop including windows, office, photoshop elements and other software for under AUD500 (USD350). Not exactly a money spinner. They did this just to keep Linux and OSS out.

Long term free, as in beer, always wins out.

Reply Score: 8

RE: maybe because it is free
by bibe on Tue 7th Apr 2009 11:49 UTC in reply to "maybe because it is free"
bibe Member since:
2005-07-09

MS is obviously giving away XP just to keep marketshare. This is hardly a sound long term strategy. MS has far greater development costs than the OSS community.


Hmmm on the contrary, I would say it's a good long term strategy, just thinking how long my not so technically interested brother, father, girlfriend and most of their friends needed to learn how to partially use windows, and they still have a hell of a respect for it. Binding them further to their platform is a strategic priority for Microsoft.

Never underestimate the power of habitual behavior®.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: maybe because it is free
by unclefester on Wed 8th Apr 2009 06:29 UTC in reply to "RE: maybe because it is free"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Commoditisation will destroy the MS business model. It has already destroyed the Unix workstation market.

What happens in 10 years time when a netbook using a non-x86 CPU costs $49 from the local supermarket? Will MS and other software makers spend a fortune porting to the new architecture? Will an OEM pay $10 for a Windows 9 license which will add another $50 to the retail price due to the multiplier effect. Or will they run a customised OSS solution? It is pretty obvious.

If you look at the history of business even the biggest corporations eventually shrink or die. MS is particularly vulnerable because it is basically a single product (windows/office) company that has saturated the market. The alternate product is free.

Lets imagine the situation of Coca Cola if a similar and equally palaatble Open Source Cola was given away absolutely free. Sure people would still drink Coke but eventually Coke would lose market share to OSC. Kids would drink OSC rather than spending their pocket money. In poorer countries people would drink OSC because Coke was too expensive. Long term the Coke business would become totally unprofitable.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: maybe because it is free
by Vlad on Wed 8th Apr 2009 06:57 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: maybe because it is free"
Vlad Member since:
2006-03-23

You're assuming that netbooks are the totality/majority of system sales. And while what you've said might be true in the ultra-cheap netbook market, consumers have proven time and time again that cost isn't everything (just take a look at ipods vs. the world).

I doubt we'll see sub-$100 netbooks simply because of the high cost of mfg and slim profit margin. Besides that, utility starts to plummet when you drop below 9" screens, which is crucial in bringing the price down. MS can always compete on x86 in developing markets by offering their OS for free.

At the end of the day, MS makes money from OEMs and businesses, not home consumers buying RTM copies of Windows, or consumers buying cheap netbooks. It's in their interest to give those copies away for free to make their profit system self-sustaining.

Reply Score: 1

unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Do you live in the USA? The other 95% of the world's population just don't care what Americans do. For most people in the rest of the world people even $50 is a lot of money - a weeks pay for a doctor in Africa. So of course they will try and save as much money as possible.

American companies just don't get it. The US carmakers still don't understand that they will soon be out of business. In a decade Steve Ballmer will be ranting when MS market share has fallen to less 50%.

Reply Score: 2

Ubuntu
by ArcadeFX on Tue 7th Apr 2009 08:20 UTC
ArcadeFX
Member since:
2005-07-06

I plan on getting two netbooks, wiping Windows XP off and running Ubuntu.

I saw a friends netbook with it, it is sweet!

Reply Score: 3

RE: Ubuntu
by Punktyras on Tue 7th Apr 2009 09:02 UTC in reply to "Ubuntu "
Punktyras Member since:
2006-01-07

I plan on getting two netbooks, wiping Windows XP off and running Ubuntu.


If you buy PC with windows, you support MS, no matter if you wipe out it ASAP ;)

Reply Score: 9

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by Kroc on Tue 7th Apr 2009 09:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Ubuntu "
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

If you buy a PC, you support the OEMs, who support Windows...

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Ubuntu
by StephenBeDoper on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:34 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Ubuntu "
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Eh? By that reasoning, if you buy a Mac, you support Asus and Intel, who support Windows ;)

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by Rehdon on Tue 7th Apr 2009 10:47 UTC in reply to "RE: Ubuntu "
Rehdon Member since:
2005-07-06

I know, I know, stop rubbing it in! ;) But it's the OEM choice, not mine, I can't wait indefinitely for them to put Linux (as announced) on their thing.

I wish all the boxes I promptly erased Windows from would be counted in such statistics ...

Rehdon

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Ubuntu
by ArcadeFX on Tue 7th Apr 2009 10:53 UTC in reply to "RE: Ubuntu "
ArcadeFX Member since:
2005-07-06


If you buy PC with windows, you support MS, no matter if you wipe out it ASAP ;)


True dat...

I am a registered MS partner. ;) I have a number of copies of Windows XP, Vista Ultimate, etc. Supporting Microsoft isn't a problem.

I just prefer Linux for certain things: Servers (Web, Mail, File), netbooks, embedded computers, etc.

Edited 2009-04-07 11:11 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Why Windows dominates netbooks...
by rklrkl on Tue 7th Apr 2009 08:24 UTC
rklrkl
Member since:
2005-07-06

I think there's actually quite a few reasons (not really alluded to by the article) why Windows is currently dominating netbooks:

* Microsoft are basically "giving away" XP by charging very little to OEMs for it, making the price gap smaller than the equivalent XP costs on desktops/laptops. They had to do this because the lower price of netbooks would make XP seem expensive compared to Linux.

* OEMs don't have much experience of Linux and when they choose a Linux, they either don't use one of the big three (Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSUSE - witness the nonsense of ASUS's Xandros or Acer's Linpus) or when they do pick of the big three, they cripple it somewhat (Dell's 1GB kernel limit and using their own fairly obsolete repos).

* This one's obvious - Windows has a monopoly on desktops and full-sized laptops, so inevitably there's going to be much more demand to run Windows on netbooks than Linux.

It's not that Windows is technically better than Linux (it isn't) or indeed that Windows is easier to use than Linux (that was true 5 years ago, but not now), but it's basically a combination of lowball MS deals, mis-steps by OEMs w.r.t. Linux distros used and the obvious leveraging of the desktop/laptop monopoly to dominate the netbook arena.

Me? I'll stick with Linux on my netbook - it shipped with Linux, but I'll be wiping it soon and putting a "real" distro on it (just waiting for Fedora 11 final really).

Reply Score: 11

Luis Member since:
2006-04-28

Yes, I agree with your reasons, but even more importantly, when Linux was offered "by default" in netbooks, these were either 7" or 8.9" screens with _very_ bad and small SSDs and cramped keyboards. Besides, the distros put in them were not exactly stellar.

Then the new generation came out, with 10.2" screens and real hard drives. And bigger keyboards too. These ones offered Windows XP. No option for Linux (or hard to find). So really, consumers never really had a real choice. First they bought netbooks with Linux because it was wat was offered. Then they bought better ones with Windows because it was also what was offered. The choice at that point wasn't Windows vs. Linux. It was a better netbook vs. a worse netbook, the better one having Windows in it.

And then obviously is the price thing. I'm a Linux user, but I'd rather get a netbook with Windows for 20 euros more, even if they were offering it with Linux for 20 less. Why? Because 20 euros is a decent price for having XP "just in case", and I can install Linux for free and use it 99% of the time Linux but still have Windows there in case I do need it at some point.

Linux could have done things better, sure, but I mostly blame OEMs for Linux's failure. If they had offered a decent Linux (Mandriva Power Pack edition preinstalled would have given new users a good experience, for example) in a decently spec'ed netbook, people would have got it and would have probably been happy with it. But then with Windows XP being offered to them (OEMs) for the same price as a Mandriva Power Pack or less, why bother? Their support teams know Windows well and nothing about Linux, so it started to make more sense to them to offer Windows and completely forget about Linux. So basically it was all just a good and fast move by Microsoft (hell, hasn't Microsoft always been good at making business? That's actually what they are good at, not at making software. Linux on the other hand hardly tries to make business - only Canonical a bit, and hardly Mandriva).

Reply Score: 9

tonym Member since:
2005-07-06

I'm going to have to agree with you here you hit the nail on the head. Consumers don't have a choice (normal consumers).

Go to any retail store right now and look for a Linux netbook on display. They are rare or non-existant all displayed netbooks are running Windows.

About a year ago, the situation was very different only Linux netbooks were on display.

I find it sick how easy it is for Microsoft to bend the retail channel to it's will. Microsoft puts pressure on OEMs and that trickles down to the retail stores. Microsoft is a monopoly, but mostly because people are so resistant to the hint of change.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by aimnano
by aimnano on Tue 7th Apr 2009 08:49 UTC
aimnano
Member since:
2009-04-07

If I had a choice between one with windows and one with linux, I'd get the windows one...because linux is free. You can then put linux on it and have both...why not?

I can't explain the 1-5 return rate. Perhaps the retailer's support is poor? Maybe their customers didn't know the difference / didn't know what they were buying.

But I think more people should broaden their horizons and no longer look at a computer as just a "Windows" or "Linux" or "Mac" machine. They all do basically the same thing, and they can all be booted on the same machine. You can even run one inside the other.

The line is blurring.

In today's society where you can sit down in a public library or at a friend's house and potentially be using a Windows OR a Mac machine...it's hard to understand people saying "ew no - I'm not going to use that it's a MAC," just because it's something with which they aren't familiar.

As technology progresses we see more and more devices with new user interfaces...phones, computers, tivo, digital cameras...it's become second nature to learn and adjust to them. I can't believe that when these people got their computers they really threw their hands in the air and said "Well, I can't use this! It's got linux!?"

Reply Score: 5

Yawn...
by porcel on Tue 7th Apr 2009 09:19 UTC
porcel
Member since:
2006-01-28

I am sure that Microsoft's improved position in the notebook market had nothing to do with Microsoft strong-arming OEMs and retailers and only offering the models with the better specifications with Windows.

Most people can see through all the FUD. For small tech companies such as mine, Microsoft's FUD is actually good, because they misrepresent reality to such an extent that when we show companies how much they could save without lost of functionality on some of their desktops, they begin to question everything coming from Microsoft.

A modern linux distribution such as Mandriva 2009 Spring, OpenSuse 11.1 or Ubuntu is for most uses to which a 10" screen computer can be put far superior to Windows XP, which is what is currently shipping on netbooks.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Yawn...
by Knuckles on Tue 7th Apr 2009 09:57 UTC in reply to "Yawn..."
Knuckles Member since:
2005-06-29

Same here. I want to buy a netbook with linux and I basically can't. Aside from the original aspire one, and the original EEEs (7xx, 9xx) there's nothing else.

I would have bought an EEE PC 1000H right there the first time I found it in a store if there were a linux version. But alas... Searching far and wide it never seemed to turn up, and none of the others carry linux.

So basically it's back to the same: all of them ship with windows, and microsoft gets to claim all those sales, although there are people that the first thing they do is wipe windows and never run it again.

As for "Linux had every chance to become a decent household name here, but for some reason, they blew it", I'd say not really.
The manufacturers blew it with poor distros (instead of a decent, big name distro with a customizations, but still access to all the normal repositories, updates, and a proper desktop), and poor linux support - for most netbooks when released they came with binary drivers for some things (the acpi on eee pcs for one), and took a while to get the sources and the proper patches upstream, where they should have been all along.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Yawn...
by Thom_Holwerda on Tue 7th Apr 2009 10:05 UTC in reply to "RE: Yawn..."
Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

Well, then, educate the OEMs! Why don't the Linux distribution makers join together to help OEMs with making Linux available? To help them tailor their hardware in such a way that Linux works? Why do OEMs have to deal with ten billion little Linux distributions and their parent companies? Why isn't there a single place for them to go when they want to ship machines with Linux? Why aren't there tools available that make the process easier?

This is not a case of "if you build it, they'll come". If you want to have companies ship Linux, you'll have to actively make them offers, talk to them, help them, educate them.

The major Linux distributors should band together, not to create a single distribution (of course not)m but to create a single source for information for OEMs, as well a single location for them to go to in case they're interested.

Windows isn't successful just because it has a monopoly. Microsoft has built an extensive support network for OEMs to turn to in case they run into trouble. Where's the Linux equivalent? And no, UbuntuForums doesn't count.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Yawn...
by lemur2 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 12:12 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yawn..."
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Windows isn't successful just because it has a monopoly. Microsoft has built an extensive support network for OEMs to turn to in case they run into trouble. Where's the Linux equivalent? And no, UbuntuForums doesn't count.


http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/tag/netbook

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Yawn...
by asgard on Tue 7th Apr 2009 12:43 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yawn..."
asgard Member since:
2008-06-07

They are educated. They're just lying. On official ASUS distributor pages for Czechia, there was a poll if you want EEE 901 and 1000 with Linux or Windows. It was 50-50. Still, there was never offered Linux version for 901, only for 900, which has worse hardware, and at higher price. So it's obvious that they're lying.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Yawn...
by sbergman27 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 15:32 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yawn..."
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Why do OEMs have to deal with ten billion little Linux distributions and their parent companies?

Because whenever a distribution is just about there, the community turns on it viciously. We're a big, global, disfunctional family with a penchant for sabotaging our own work.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Yawn...
by StephenBeDoper on Tue 7th Apr 2009 16:43 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Yawn..."
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

Hah. There's an old joke here in Canada along the same lines:

Man goes to a restaurant that advertises "live lobster," and walks over to the tank to pick out his dinner. He notices that one lobster appears to be in the process of escaping from the tank - so he warns the waiter.

"Don't worry," says the waiter, "that's a Canadian lobster. The other lobster will pull him back down before he escapes."

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Yawn...
by Lennie on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:28 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yawn..."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

You mean something like this ?: http://www.linuxdriverproject.org/ where they even create the driver (under NDA if you really, really want it) which will be accepted in the main kernel and maintainced for a cost of 0 other then some documentation ?

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Yawn...
by sbergman27 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:40 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Yawn..."
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

You mean something like this ?: http://www.linuxdriverproject.org/

Yes, that is an interesting project. It's one of the few open source projects with devs standing by, twiddling their thumbs, looking for something to do. Uptake was notably lacking. And none of the vendors whose hardware we really care about chose to participate. Greg's project pretty much crashed and burned due to lack of interest.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Yawn...
by cmost on Wed 8th Apr 2009 01:40 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Yawn..."
cmost Member since:
2006-07-16

Well, then, educate the OEMs! Why don't the Linux distribution makers join together to help OEMs with making Linux available? To help them tailor their hardware in such a way that Linux works? Why do OEMs have to deal with ten billion little Linux distributions and their parent companies? Why isn't there a single place for them to go when they want to ship machines with Linux? Why aren't there tools available that make the process easier?

This is not a case of "if you build it, they'll come". If you want to have companies ship Linux, you'll have to actively make them offers, talk to them, help them, educate them.

The major Linux distributors should band together, not to create a single distribution (of course not)m but to create a single source for information for OEMs, as well a single location for them to go to in case they're interested.

Windows isn't successful just because it has a monopoly. Microsoft has built an extensive support network for OEMs to turn to in case they run into trouble. Where's the Linux equivalent? And no, UbuntuForums doesn't count.


You're assuming people would actually get off their duffs to learn something new. Even if Linux became widely available through OEMs; complete with support networks I doubt many people would drop Windows like a hot brick for Linux machines. People just aren't that interested in "new" or "different", even if it is superior or even equivalent to what they know. You can't get people to care!

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Yawn...
by lemur2 on Wed 8th Apr 2009 03:48 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Yawn..."
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

You're assuming people would actually get off their duffs to learn something new. Even if Linux became widely available through OEMs; complete with support networks I doubt many people would drop Windows like a hot brick for Linux machines. People just aren't that interested in "new" or "different", even if it is superior or even equivalent to what they know. You can't get people to care!


When Linux was the only option on netbooks, it didn't stop people buying them and starting the whole netbook craze going. It isn't at all hard to learn ... clicking the mouse on a menu or a toolbar icon or a menu entry is still clicking the mouse, regardles of what OS is running underneath. As you say ... people don't care. A lot of them found that Linux netbooks were perfectly OK.

Microsoft at the time were trying to end-of-life XP and get people to use Vista. Linux on netbooks came along and forced Microsoft to revive XP Home, give it away on netbooks, and to re-jig Vista into Windows 7.

... so Microsoft cared.

Now Microsoft will face the multiple problems of (1) trying to get people to pay for Windows 7 (where they currently aren't paying anything for XP Home), (2) managing the Windows 7 brand reputation if they decide to ship a limited version of Windows 7 on netbooks, or (3) trying to avoid the "expensive" tag (compared to full-fledged Linux, especially on ARM netbooks) for Windows 7 while at the same try trying to smear Apple with that exact same tag.

It should be interesting. I don't think even Microsoft can do it.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Yawn...
by Lennie on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:23 UTC in reply to "Yawn..."
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

The same story ran on Slashdot with the text: Information Week author Paul McDougall notes Microsoft's 8% decline in Windows sales is due to netbooks sporting Linux. How does Redmond make an 80% gain in netbook market share without the sales numbers reflecting that gain?

Reply Score: 2

Mircosoft "Allows"
by OSGuy on Tue 7th Apr 2009 10:22 UTC
OSGuy
Member since:
2006-01-01

It's funny how everyone says Microsoft "allows", "if Microsoft allow", "Microsoft "allows" "Microsoft "allows" - "Simon Says"

You know, if people want your product you should provide what they want and not force them to use something they don't want.

Edited 2009-04-07 10:23 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE: Mircosoft "Allows"
by lemur2 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 12:32 UTC in reply to "Mircosoft "Allows""
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

It's funny how everyone says Microsoft "allows", "if Microsoft allow", "Microsoft "allows" "Microsoft "allows" - "Simon Says"

You know, if people want your product you should provide what they want and not force them to use something they don't want.


Microsoft offers a massive "discount" to OEMs if they agree to offer only Windows exclusively.

The price of Windows to OEMs without that "discount" is hundreds of dollars dearer.

What OEM can afford to not offer Windows? Or to offer Windows and Linux but their Windows offering is hundreds of dollars dearer than another store down the road (that offers only Windows).

The end result is that OEMs normally offer Windows exclusively on their machines, with very, very few exceptions, like these:

http://system76.com/

http://www.zareason.com/

In my country, netbooks first appeared with Linux only, they couldn't run Vista and XP was being withdrawn. These Linux netbooks sold well. "Returns" were not a problem.

Within a few months, far more expensive netbooks appeared on the market ... slightly bigger screens, better keyboard, bluetooth added ... and they had a hard disk rather than an SDD. Although the OEMs claimed a Linux model was available, you couldn't actually buy one from the stores ... overnight the stock with Linux pre-installed (that was selling well) disappeared.

So now, the places where one can get a Linux netbook in my country are very limited and obscure:

http://www.kogan.com.au/shop/kogan-agora-netbook-pro/

Wow. Australia's cheapest netbook, and it had Linux pre-installed.

But then ... just days before it was due to be released for sale:

http://www.kogan.com.au/blog/2009/jan/16/kogan-agora-be-delayed/

Anyone smell a rat?

I sure do.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by ssa2204 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 12:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Mircosoft "Allows""
ssa2204 Member since:
2006-04-22

Microsoft offers a massive "discount" to OEMs if they agree to offer only Windows exclusively.

The price of Windows to OEMs without that "discount" is hundreds of dollars dearer.

What OEM can afford to not offer Windows? Or to offer Windows and Linux but their Windows offering is hundreds of dollars dearer than another store down the road (that offers only Windows).

The end result is that OEMs normally offer Windows exclusively on their machines...


Shouldn't the "free" OS still be less than the discounted? Anyways, do you actually have proof or a legitimate source to these agreements?

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by lemur2 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 13:12 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Mircosoft "Allows""
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Microsoft offers a massive "discount" to OEMs if they agree to offer only Windows exclusively.

The price of Windows to OEMs without that "discount" is hundreds of dollars dearer.

What OEM can afford to not offer Windows? Or to offer Windows and Linux but their Windows offering is hundreds of dollars dearer than another store down the road (that offers only Windows).

The end result is that OEMs normally offer Windows exclusively on their machines...


Shouldn't the "free" OS still be less than the discounted? Anyways, do you actually have proof or a legitimate source to these agreements?
"

It is common knowledge. You should be able to find evidence material from the DOJ anti-trust lawsuit, or where a site like Groklaw or Boycott Novell has saved files that were part of the evidence of the Comes v Microsoft trial.

Yes ... here you go ...

http://boycottnovell.com/comes-iowa-trial-exhibits/

Enjoy. Fill your boots.

I'm sure this archive is also mirrored at Groklaw, but I can't find a link just now.

PS: Here is Groklaw's Microsoft page:

http://www.groklaw.net/staticpages/index.php?page=2005010107100653

This is Comes v Microsoft:

http://www.groklaw.net/staticpages/index.php?page=2005010107100653#...

Here is an archive of US DOJ v Microsoft

http://www.usdoj.gov/atr/cases/ms_index.htm

Microsoft even managed to lobby for a law in the US where a computer retailer was not allowed to offer a computer for sale without an OS installed. No "naked" PCs ... you can only buy such a thing as piece parts, and assemble it yourself. I had heard that they even wanted Linux to not oficially count as an OS under this law, but they couldn't get that (because Linux clearly is an OS, and even politicians could see that).

There is even a further discount to be had from Microsoft if the OEM will put on ads and on their website "{so and so} recommends Windows".

Here you go, as an example, you can see exactly that text near the top on the right-hand side of this page:

http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopping/store_access.do?template...

Edited 2009-04-07 13:22 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 8th Apr 2009 03:13 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Mircosoft "Allows""
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

I believe as a result of those trials, Microsoft was prohibited from entering into such agreements. So they shouldn't be doing that now, but who really knows?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by lemur2 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 13:39 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Mircosoft "Allows""
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

"Microsoft offers a massive "discount" to OEMs if they agree to offer only Windows exclusively.


Anyways, do you actually have proof or a legitimate source to these agreements?
"

Here is a specific case that should be well known to this site:

http://www.internetnews.com/bus-news/article.php/3073811

"While the specific merits of Be's anti-trust case against will never be known, in its lawsuit Be did allege "the destruction of Be's business resulting from the anti-competitive business practices of Microsoft."

There was one specific instance when Be reportedly claimed Microsoft took actions to prevent Be's presence of the BeOs next to Windows on a line of Hitachi Ltd. PCs.

Previously, Be claimed that in 1998 its Be Operating System was to be part of Hitachi's pre-installed "dual boot system." Be says Microsoft was angry with Hitachi's decision and pressured the company with higher prices for its Windows OS. Any price increase would pressure Hitachi's margins on each PC, making it more cost-effective to remove the BeOS."

Reply Score: 5

RE[4]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by Hiev on Tue 7th Apr 2009 13:52 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Mircosoft "Allows""
Hiev Member since:
2005-09-27

Do you have a this century proof?

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by lemur2 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:06 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Mircosoft "Allows""
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Do you have a this century proof?


Microsoft not only buys out OEMs, it also buys out all such cases as they arise. This particular lock-out has been in place for so long that people have all but forgotten about it ... but it definitely is still in operation.

In fact, people are so used to this sort of anti-competitive behaviour from Microsoft, they do not even recognise it any longer. People such as yourself have had the wool so thoroughly pulled over their eyes for so long, they do not believe it when someone mentions it.

None of that makes it not so, however.

Anyway ... as a consequence, all such material is of a similar age.

These days, there is only two "competitors" that can hold out and afford to continue to offer alternatives to Microsoft in the face of these sort of anti-competition practices by a mega-monopoly.

One "competitior" is Apple ... part-owned by Microsoft.

The other competitor is a bunch of volunteers (admittedly, 1.5 million of them, so a very large bunch) who can't be bought out or squeezed out becuase they are not in it for the money but rather they are in it in order to write good software for people to use and enjoy.

Anyway ... a bunch of volunteers offering the fruits of their efforts for free can hardly initiate a lawsuit alledging that a mega-monopoly is undercutting them in the marketplace, can they? On the face of it, it sounds silly.

Nevertheless, this is how Microsoft effectively undercuts "free". Microsoft does it by making Windows a lot more expensive to you as an OEM than it is to your competitor OEM if you opt to also offer an alternative OS for sale as well as Windows.

Edited 2009-04-07 14:12 UTC

Reply Score: 4

RE[6]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by Hiev on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:10 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Mircosoft "Allows""
Hiev Member since:
2005-09-27

I repeat:

Do you have a this century proof?

Reply Score: 0

RE[7]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by lemur2 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:15 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Mircosoft "Allows""
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

I repeat:

Do you have a this century proof?


I repeat ... Microsoft buys out the proof.

Doesn't mean that it doesn't happen.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Criticism_of_Microsoft#Licensing_agree...

"The Findings of Fact in the United States Microsoft antitrust case established that "One of the ways Microsoft combats piracy is by advising OEMs that they will be charged a higher price for Windows unless they drastically limit the number of PCs that they sell without an operating system pre-installed. In 1998, all major OEMs agreed to this restriction." This has been called the "Windows tax" or "Microsoft tax"."


Google for "Microsoft tax".

Edited 2009-04-07 14:22 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[7]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by superstoned on Wed 8th Apr 2009 17:12 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Mircosoft "Allows""
superstoned Member since:
2005-07-07

Hmmm, proof, that would be what, a lawsuit? In the netherlands you can look at any big company's and government organisations pricing for MS software. They make a 'deal': you pay one price, you get what you want. It's common practice, they have such a deal at our IT department too. Don't want me copying their contracts, unfortunately. The result of that pricing is obviously that it makes sure the company standardizes on MS technology. They used to have Novell Netware. Gone, Active Directory is 'free' (despite taking twice as much costs to keep running). etc etc. Proof? You'd need to start a lawsuit, and in 10 years you'll get your proof. Until then - just don't believe it and dream on.

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by DrillSgt on Tue 7th Apr 2009 15:45 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Mircosoft "Allows""
DrillSgt Member since:
2005-12-02

"The other competitor is a bunch of volunteers (admittedly, 1.5 million of them, so a very large bunch) who can't be bought out or squeezed out becuase they are not in it for the money but rather they are in it in order to write good software for people to use and enjoy."

If there are that many developers for the Linux platform, then that would very well be enough to put a hurt on MS. How and where did you get those figures?

So if I agree there are that many, then lets take a look at the community a bit:

1.) Why when bug reports are submitted they get closed with a "Won't Fix" remark 8 out of 10 times? - Yes, I have submitted 200 bug reports over a period of 2 years a few years ago..I stopped due to the above.

2.) If you are not considered one of the great ones, when you submit a patch it will get sent back to with a comment of "We can not use your patch at thie time, we have the developers working on the problem". - 100% return rate. That encourages people to write OSS now doesn't it? Granted my code may not have been all that great, but at the very least return it and tell me "why" it sucked, or "why" it might be the worst code ever written, and that you appreciate the effort made.

3.) With your figure of 1.5 million developers, the above 2 scenarios would not happen. That is if there was anybody actually driving the boat, instead there is a bunch of people all trying to row, causing the boat to go in a circle and not go anywhere fast.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: Mircosoft "Allows"
by asgard on Tue 7th Apr 2009 20:49 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Mircosoft "Allows""
asgard Member since:
2008-06-07

The point is, even if Linux would be free, OEMs do not want to offer it, because they would break their exclusive agreement with MS, which would mean higher prices. It's just anticompetitive practices from MS, and its pretty obvious from the situation in e.g. ASUS EEE netbooks here in Czechia (as I already explained above).

There was no technical reason they couldn't put Linux on EEE 904 (or what they offer now with Windows), if they were able to put it on EEE 900. Nor there was lack of interest, as is apparent from any forum (if there was lack of interest, they wouldn't bother offering EEE 900). They just don't want Linux compete head to head with Windows XP, obviously, because they have agreements with MS. That's the only possible explanation from the facts.

They even exempted EEE netbooks from rules that they have for other their notebooks. For example, you can buy an ASUS notebook in other EU country, and you can get a 2-year warranty in Czechia. For Linux EEE netbooks, you can't do that (I am not sure if this particular practice is even legal, because we are EU member). Or, on other ASUS notebooks, you can get a refund for Windows XP if you don't want them. But not on netbooks.

The facts are there.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by corbintechboy
by corbintechboy on Tue 7th Apr 2009 10:25 UTC
corbintechboy
Member since:
2006-05-02

XP only wins because of the fact that most people do not want to take the time involved to learn a new OS. People freak when they can't shut down the PC with a button named start or when the don't have to google the net for security fixes for the OS.

This really is not a result of Windows vs Linux, this is a result of the consumer fearing the unknown. As far as that blog claiming that people wanted a better product, they did not they wanted the fisher price point and click affair that they have had for years, does not make either better then the other.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by corbintechboy
by Vlad on Wed 8th Apr 2009 07:11 UTC in reply to "Comment by corbintechboy"
Vlad Member since:
2006-03-23

Well, you're partially correct; there is fear involved, but it's more cost driven than anything else. Migrating from anything to anything is never free and almost certainly costs more than the OS in question.

Sure, Linux might be free, heck it might (is to me) be better, but that doesn't make it the best choice. You've got to pay a tech to install it, pay to train your employees on it, pay techs to support it (immensely expensive initially), and meet any software/regulatory requirements of your business.

Simply put: Do you want to pay your engineers $100/hour to learn whatever OS and whatever Office, or do you want them to use Windows because they all already know it? How much do you have to pay them to be proficient and how much productivity have you lost? Suddenly a $50, $100, or even $200 Win license isn't a big deal.

Reply Score: 1

Why is it special
by kaiwai on Tue 7th Apr 2009 10:46 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

You asked:

Also, what is up with that story on AppleInsider about Microsoft offering Windows-7-to-XP downgrade rights? Is that really so special?


Why is it so special? because Windows Vista was a monumental balls up and Windows XP was a last minute reprieve from a massage backlash from the great unwashed masses. Carrying along this very policy where people can downgrade from Windows 7 to Windows XP doesn't give much confidence to end users as to the state of Windows 7 if they're still offering downgrade rights.

Now, don't get me wrong - I'm not stating anywhere in that post that I think Windows 7 is a failure (IMHO it is not only a massive improvement over Windows Vista it is also a massive improvement over Windows XP as well). The simple fact of the matter is that perception is reality. When Microsoft is giving off a perception over the lack of confidence in Windows 7 its going to be difficult to see whether this downgrade rights is actually a good thing.

If the purpose of downgrade rights is based on the notion that one must support old applications - then why not bundle free of charge for all customers who want it a copy of Virtual PC and a Windows XP pre-done image which can be used? I am really confused as to the thinking of Microsoft when it comes to addressing issues like compatibility that can be addressed via virtualisation instead of ripping out the whole operating system and replacing it with an older version.

Reply Score: 2

FUD
by 3rdalbum on Tue 7th Apr 2009 11:24 UTC
3rdalbum
Member since:
2008-05-26

Neither Canonical nor MSI have "seen" a higher return rate for Linux machines. If you go to a retailer and buy a computer, and then return it because you don't like it, the retailer doesn't send the product back to the supplier. The retailer doesn't even tell the supplier what's happened. The retailer puts a reduced price on the product and sells it.

I find it tiresome that this Microsoft guy reckons Windows "just works out of the box with people’s stuff" (direct quote). Out-of-the-box, huh? Then why did I need to manually install drivers for my friend's Ethernet port, wireless card, sound chipset, and graphics card on Vista? Does this Microsoft guy think it's an amazing technological feat that I didn't need to install a driver for the monitor, the mouse and the speakers?

Of course, as we'd all expect, Ubuntu worked literally out-of-the-box with Ethernet, wireless, sound and 2D acceleration of graphics card, with about two mouse-clicks required to install the 3D graphics driver. I was especially amazed that Vista wouldn't even do anything with the ethernet port unless I manually installed a driver.

I should sue Microsoft for false advertising. Their operating system does not have plug 'n' play capability with hardware devices, despite what their promotional material states.

Reply Score: 2

RE: FUD
by ssa2204 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 12:28 UTC in reply to "FUD"
ssa2204 Member since:
2006-04-22

Neither Canonical nor MSI have "seen" a higher return rate for Linux machines. If you go to a retailer and buy a computer, and then return it because you don't like it, the retailer doesn't send the product back to the supplier. The retailer doesn't even tell the supplier what's happened. The retailer puts a reduced price on the product and sells it.


Most small resellers can simply return the product directly to the distributor. Large retail chains like Best Buy will will take and return back to the wholesale market any products that are in quantity. The only items resellers put out in open box are items that do not have a significant quantity that have been returned. The companies you see on the web selling large quantities of "refurbished" products were purchased directly from distributors who obtained them from their reseller companies.

Resellers and distributors do inform the manufacturer when there is significant return status, large retailers almost always do this.

I find it tiresome that this Microsoft guy reckons Windows "just works out of the box with people’s stuff" (direct quote). Out-of-the-box, huh? Then why did I need to manually install drivers for my friend's Ethernet port, wireless card, sound chipset, and graphics card on Vista? Does this Microsoft guy think it's an amazing technological feat that I didn't need to install a driver for the monitor, the mouse and the speakers?

Of course, as we'd all expect, Ubuntu worked literally out-of-the-box with Ethernet, wireless, sound and 2D acceleration of graphics card, with about two mouse-clicks required to install the 3D graphics driver. I was especially amazed that Vista wouldn't even do anything with the ethernet port unless I manually installed a driver.


Since when do people have to install drivers for a store bought computer? That is done at the factory. Only time you need to do that is if you are building your own system, or re-installing. Considering that most MFRs simply provide disk image restore, hardly anyone messes with drivers. Add to that when hardware is no-name cheap knock offs, of course it does not get identified properly.

Most simply do not seem to understand that Linux may support all these number of devices, because they have to. Microsoft does not. They provide an adequate amount to get what is necessary running. The key difference that many consumers will easily spot is the level of support and functions the driver provides. Just being able to 'print' is not adequate.

I should sue Microsoft for false advertising. Their operating system does not have plug 'n' play capability with hardware devices, despite what their promotional material states.


Do you know what plug 'n' play even is? Do you know what hardware configuration was like before PnP? Ever had to manually set IRQs? Diagnose IRQ conflicts? Deal with modems, soundcards, etc.. that just would not work?

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: FUD
by 3rdalbum on Wed 8th Apr 2009 08:32 UTC in reply to "RE: FUD"
3rdalbum Member since:
2008-05-26

That's funny; I used to work at a smaller electrical retailer. Returns to the supplier were only ever allowed for products that developed faults during the DOA period, not because the customer didn't like the product. "Refurbished" products are what suppliers call "T2s" and what retailers down here call "Seconds". They are products that have developed faults during their DOA period and have been returned and fixed.

To me, plug 'n' play is where you "plug" in the device and you can then just start to "play" with it. I don't care about MS-DOS history - if you have to do anything other than plugging and playing, then it's not plug and play is it?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: FUD
by ssa2204 on Thu 9th Apr 2009 01:55 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: FUD"
ssa2204 Member since:
2006-04-22

That's funny; I used to work at a smaller electrical retailer. Returns to the supplier were only ever allowed for products that developed faults during the DOA period, not because the customer didn't like the product. "Refurbished" products are what suppliers call "T2s" and what retailers down here call "Seconds". They are products that have developed faults during their DOA period and have been returned and fixed.


Well you said small electrical retailer, I am referring to companies such as Tech Data, Ingram Micro, Synnex, and PCW that handle exclusively just computer technology; systems, components, software, etc. So I can really surmise what type of channel you use, but suffice to say the above distributors all have a RMA process that allows return of products. Synnex especially deals in the T2 as well, often they have direct purchase from the largest retailers of returned, overstock, and EOS. The volume at which these companies work with allow them to do this. I do know that the distribution channels are completely different when it comes to electronics (audio/video, etc..).

To me, plug 'n' play is where you "plug" in the device and you can then just start to "play" with it. I don't care about MS-DOS history - if you have to do anything other than plugging and playing, then it's not plug and play is it?


Terminology aside, you are correct in that Linux out of the box does have a larger database of hardware supported. But it is equally important to understand why, and the history of this. It was not too long ago that Linux had very poor support for hardware, if your system did not have drivers, then tough. Linux world has to support so many components simply because they have no choice. Windows on the other hand does not rely on supporting as large a base simply because 99% of manufacturers will provide their own drivers.

But just being able to provide "any" driver is not always enough is it? People want and expect expanded functionality. Take video and sound cards for example. It simply is not enough that you can just have sound, consumers expect that the device has features that can be configured, expanded, tweaked, etc. Most enterprise level printers certainly provide expanded functionality through the device itself via it's HTTP service, but that is not possible on consumer devices.

FYI, as I write this, it just so happens I now able to do so after having a wonderful joy of a time installing the ATI Radeon driver for my laptop...under KDE. I say wonderful simply because I experienced enough problems that I ended up having to revert back the old configuration. From past experience with Nvidia drivers in Linux, I really do not know why I wasted time doing this (well actually I was burning time waiting for someone). Point is what should have been a simple task was not. I honestly have not had "driver" issues in Windows since XP. From my tests of Vista and 7, the only reason I bothered to install MFR drivers was to see if there was added functionality, but out of the box everything worked because the components were commonly used.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: FUD
by lemur2 on Thu 9th Apr 2009 02:47 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: FUD"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Windows on the other hand does not rely on supporting as large a base simply because 99% of manufacturers will provide their own drivers.


Those drivers aren't Windows then, are they? They are OEM drivers, for Windows. This may seem on the surface to be a pedantic distinction, but it isn't really, it is actually quite important, and it is a major failing of Windows.

Problem: any such device, for which Windows has drivers only by virtue of support from the OEM, will be in trouble any time that Windows changes its driver model. This happened with Vista. When Vista changed the driver model, any device which was then out of production, and which had only (binary) XP drivers from the OEM, had a problem with Vista. The XP driver wouldn't work, and the OEM typically wouldn't write new drivers for a model that was no longer sold (nothing in it for the OEM).

This same problem for Windows will soon happen all over again as the world moves to 64-bit OSes.

Edited 2009-04-09 02:56 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: FUD
by lemur2 on Thu 9th Apr 2009 03:22 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: FUD"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

But just being able to provide "any" driver is not always enough is it? People want and expect expanded functionality.


Pffft. I bought an inexpensive USB inkjet printer a couple of years ago, to go with an inexpensive computer. It was, from memory, a HP DSC 26300. The Windows XP driver was horrible ... basically crapware and adware. When it ran out of ink, it gave me a link to a US site where I could purchase some more at inflated prices. What good is that to me? (I live in Australia). It showed me garish ads for other HP software. There were some bundled rubbish-ware applications that were also essentially just adware.

On Linux, you install hplip, select a PPD file for the printer by its model name (which is embossed in the plastic at the front of the printer, so it can't be misplaced) ... and it just prints. You can use the HPLIP icon in the system tray to check the ink levels, clean the heads and whatever else you might want to do. There is a notification bubble that pops up when the ink is low. You can read the printer's status and jobs history from a log file.

You can use the same PPD file to define the printer in CUPs, and effectively turn it into a networked Postscript printer if you like. You can share the PPD file around (it is just a text file) and that will even define the printer for other machines on your network ... you don't have to install any drivers on them in order for them to be able to print. You can share the printer (via CUPs) to other Linux machines, other Macs or other Windows machines on your network (you are not required to run a particular OS in order to share the USB inkjet printer).

You could even put an inexpensive USB inkjet printer on a power plug double-adapter along with this:
http://www.geeky-gadgets.com/?p=11207
... and create a whole print server.

Miles more functionality, and way less adware, crapware and annoying-ware on Linux than on Windows for the exact same inexpensive little printer.

And it will still work if I choose to upgrade to a 64-bit Linux OS.

Edited 2009-04-09 03:34 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: FUD
by darknexus on Thu 9th Apr 2009 13:36 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: FUD"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

HP is rather infamous for loading up its drivers with crapware. There is no reason, none at all, that I should need to download a 400mb file (not exagerating) for my printer, for the curious it's an HP PSC-1610.
Anyway, the other problem with HP and some other companies is that a good number of their older printers no longer work on Windows or OS X. Why? Because HP decided those models were obsolete and stopped releasing updated drivers for them, not caring of course that a lot of people still use them. Fortunately my printer isn't that old, but I've had to set up printers that were too old for HP to bother supporting them. Under Linux, on the other hand, those supposedly outdated printers work just fine along with most of the new ones, as the manufacturer doesn't get to decide when to obsolete a driver.
Bottom line: manufacturer-provided drivers are a double-edged sword. On one side, the drivers typically work well and support the most common operating systems (Windows and OS X), and no one knows the product better than the manufacturers... at least usually. Not to mention the drivers are released at the same time as the product, so no waiting for them. On the other hand, though, you're completely dependent on the product manufacturer. If anything happens (i.e. the company goes bust), or they decide they no longer wish to provide drivers for your product, you're shit out of luck. They can also, as in the case of HP, fill your driver with crapware and you don't really have a choice whether you want it or not, and removing it can be a real pain. There are good and bad points to both approaches.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: FUD
by UltraZelda64 on Thu 9th Apr 2009 02:14 UTC in reply to "RE: FUD"
UltraZelda64 Member since:
2006-12-05

Do you know what plug 'n' play even is?

Yeah, this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RgriTO8UHvs

Edited 2009-04-09 02:15 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Let me tell you alittle story...
by cyberpython on Tue 7th Apr 2009 11:50 UTC
cyberpython
Member since:
2009-02-02

...Last Christmas I decided to buy an Acer Aspire One 100L - these were sold for about 240E here in Greece. Just 1-2 days before ordering the Acer I got an email from a local pc-store that informed me about a holiday offer on the Asus EeePC 900 with Win XP (16GB SSD - better battery life than the Acer)being sold for just 240E - guess what: the same device with Linux pre-installed still had the "normal" price of 320E. So I bought the XP model and replaced it with an Ubuntu flavor customized for the Asus Eee. My point is that sales numbers do not reflect the reality and one cannot make a valid assumptions based on those.

Reply Score: 4

Netbook Windows market share worldwide?
by vasper on Tue 7th Apr 2009 12:06 UTC
vasper
Member since:
2005-07-22

"We’ve seen Windows share on these PCs in the U.S. go from under 10% of unit sales during the first half of 2008 to 96% as of February 2009, according to the latest NPD Retail Tracking Service data. "

It would be interesting to see the numbers for Europe and Asia...

Reply Score: 2

...
by Hiev on Tue 7th Apr 2009 13:22 UTC
Hiev
Member since:
2005-09-27

The answer is easy:


Most people want to use Windows, period.

Reply Score: 3

dell's numbers
by TechGeek on Tue 7th Apr 2009 13:53 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

The last numbers I saw from Dell indicated that about 30% of their netbooks shipped with Linux. I dont know why Microsoft thinks they are doing such a bang up job. Compared to their normal 96% of normal desktops, they are doing horrible only getting 70% of netbook sales. Does anyone have recent Dell numbers?

Reply Score: 2

My experience
by XCoder on Tue 7th Apr 2009 13:57 UTC
XCoder
Member since:
2006-08-11

I have eee901 with preinstalled Xandaros. It is very fast linux, but the user experience is a nightmare. Very few application - I tired to install apps from Debian repos, but it is caused many dependecy problems, and I really hate the default user eee interface.

I tired the following OS-es:
- Windows XP. Very slooooow.
- Ubuntu (easy-peasy). Relative fast boot time, but I can't switch to 800x600 resolution, the Intel driver ignores the modelines in xorg.conf - all wine games are unuseable.
- Windows7 beta. Very nice, relative fast (~ ubuntu), but I can't found any driver for eee901. The shutdown is very slooooow.
- OpenSuSE 11.1 with KDE4. Slower then ubuntu, but useable. But the KDE4 is a very big sux. Unstable, unconfortable. IMHO it is in pre-alpha state.
- OpenSuSE 11.1 with Gnome. Slower then KDE4, but far more stable and comfortable.

Probabaly I will tired the Win7 beta2 when will be released.

Reply Score: 2

My take
by Xaero_Vincent on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:33 UTC
Xaero_Vincent
Member since:
2006-08-18

Points from the article:

There’s a wizard to help with just about anything, so you’ll never need to go to the command line and manually configure things.

There are loads of GUI configuration utilities and wizards for *nix desktop environments, especially for KDE. Yes some things still need to be done via the terminal but it isn't like I haven't had to visit CMD.exe on occasion.

Techs all over the world speak Windows, which means it’s easy to get help either online or in person.

This is probably the only point that has any possible credibility, although I'll contest to any inference to a lack of online resources for users.

It’s easy to stay up-to-date since Windows releases updates, patches and fixes on a regular, predictable schedule. And you can set your machine to download and install them automatically!

What a bunch of crap. Not only do most modern distributions offer this but will also manage and update *all* installed software.

Windows supports nearly 3,000 printers, more than 700 digital cameras, more than 240 webcams and more than 180 digital video cameras.

There are thousands of FOSS and commercial printer drivers for CUPS. gPhoto2 supports over 1100 digital cameras. One man wrote Linux drivers for 235 low-cost webcams a couple years back and I believe it was merged in the kernel; this isn't even the total number supported but rather what one man contributed--heh.

http://www.theinquirer.net/inquirer/news/633/1047633/one-man-writes...

Windows supports the broadest array of PC applications and games.

Since its possible to run thousands of Win32 applications/games with Wine, Crossover, Cedega, and some .NET applications with Wine and Mono, shouldn't this fact also apply to Linux/*nix? This doesn't even take into account alternative options, such as a seamless terminal services client (a special patched rdesktop RDP client).

http://www.fontis.com.au/rdesktop

There’s more choice - 90+ partners ship Windows-based netbook PCs today, so you can get exactly the machine you want at exactly the price you are willing to pay.

Right, a significant factor why the Linux market on netbooks indeed eroded. That along with bundling garbage/poorly supported distributions that don't stack up with the likes of say Ubuntu, Fedora, and openSUSE.

Most of all, though, I think Linux failed simply because it isn't exactly like Windows and is therefore essentially inferior just on principle in the eyes of the public because of the unwillingness to accept a learning curve. How do you compete with such ideology?

Edited 2009-04-07 14:39 UTC

Reply Score: 4

Downstripped Linuxes are the reason
by reez on Tue 7th Apr 2009 14:46 UTC
reez
Member since:
2006-06-28

I bought an Aspire ONE with the intention to replace the Linux Distribution installed on it, but I haven't thought it's THAT bad.

You basically can only start Email, IM, Office and an out dated Firefox (and no, it was not possible to easily update it). When it comes to games there were Flash (or Java) games with Ads, ....

I mean really, nobody really wants this and since most people are not able to replace this system, especially because there is no CD drive one has to buy the Windows version.

I remember when I was in the super market to test some netbooks. The people there said things like 'Oh, this netbook is bad, because it has no REAL windows'. So they think it's something down stripped. I wonder, why it has been stripped down so much. It even has the power to run Warzone2100, even if VRam is limited to 8 (eight) MBs.

So I would say it's the fault of default Linux distribution. People want more than a heavily limited set of applications.

But I haven't tried any other Linux based netbooks yet.

Reply Score: 2

Linux FOR Netbooks
by NathanHill on Tue 7th Apr 2009 15:03 UTC
NathanHill
Member since:
2006-10-06

I think the reason why Linux hasn't done well on Netbooks is because it wasn't made FOR Netbooks. XP wasn't either - I'll come back to that.

Linux would kill on the Netbook if it was designed to take advantage of the Netbook - a small speedy system, lite but nice featured applications that make it easy to email, share, and send files, apps focused on taking advantage of the internet, apps focused on mobility and battery usage. An OS designed for a Netbook and all the advantages it brings.

Instead, we get distributions that are sort of crippled... have been hacked to work on small screens and run a little lighter. But we still end up with crappy apps like Open Office (way too big) and Firefox (faster, lighter please). Where are the custom apps that minimize disk usage and take advantage of the Netbook architecture and features? Apps that show you how to make better use of USB drives and SD cards? Apps that let you upload pictures in seconds from your camera on the go? Apps that let you sync your Netbook with your cellphone, Mac OS X desktop, Linux desktop, and Windows desktop?

Instead, consumers have a choice - they can get XP, which is not tailored to a Netbook either but at least you can get the apps you already know and it's not too slow, or you can get Linux, which sort of feels like a ripoff of XP but without the compatibility and with apps that feel like knockoffs too... and maybe even slower or just as slow.

No brainer for me. I'd go with XP too.

I think people are open to new OSes, if it makes their computer use better, smoother, and more fun. But I guess that is why I am waiting to see what Apple does with a larger iPod Touch, because they have made on the go computing fun with the iPhone OS (and Mac OS X). I think Linux can do it as well.

Reply Score: 6

Comment by vtolkov
by vtolkov on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:06 UTC
vtolkov
Member since:
2006-07-26

Linux just does not work on many of netbooks, because of the same infamous reason: there are problems with drivers. Most of netbooks have some new WiFi chips and audio and so on. I've tried several distros on my Msi Wind, and none works out of the box.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by vtolkov
by sbergman27 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:23 UTC in reply to "Comment by vtolkov"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Linux just does not work on many of netbooks
...
problems with drivers.
...
I've tried several distros on my Msi Wind, and none works out of the box.

To be fair, the point of buying the whole system from one vendor is that the vendor can see to it that it does work "out of the box". And they have delivered upon that promise with regards to hardware support. The problem is that they have so far chosen such total crap distros which don't do a decent job of showcasing any of Linux's strengths.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: Comment by vtolkov
by deathshadow on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by vtolkov"
deathshadow Member since:
2005-07-12

Right up until you try to plug something into it, and find out that from that factory the USB driver doesn't even recognize half your devices without manually configuring them from the command line.

Which is when grandma says **** you and the open sores you rode in on.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by vtolkov
by sbergman27 on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:59 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by vtolkov"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Which is when grandma says **** you and the open sores you rode in on.

Now Jason Knight:

http://www.osnews.com/user/deathshadow

even Robert Metcalfe learned that such childish tactics undermined his arguments and stopped using such infantile terms back around 2000 or so.

And isn't there another Jason Knight Linux-hater on this site?

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by vtolkov
by darknexus on Tue 7th Apr 2009 19:16 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by vtolkov"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Now, now. Find a relevant fault with Linux, manual configuration of USB devices hasn't been a problem for a few years now. There are plenty of legitimate faults to find, why settle for an outdated one? It reminds me of the Windows haters spewing out about the blue screen of death, even though that's been a rare problem since win2k.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by vtolkov
by darknexus on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:25 UTC in reply to "Comment by vtolkov"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

And Windows XP does?
Yes, MSI's provided install of XP works out of the box, but I guarantee you that straight, vanilla XP does not. It's the same with Linux. While none of the distributions may work out of the box, that would be a non-issue if the OEMs set up the drivers and provided you with that preconfigured system and restore media, just as they do with Windows now.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by vtolkov
by vtolkov on Tue 7th Apr 2009 17:53 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by vtolkov"
vtolkov Member since:
2006-07-26

Windows has stable driver API, so there is just one driver to support. If I go to OEM website, there are drivers for (different hardware though) just one Suse distro of one single version of it. Linux model of low-level development just does not work with vendors' drivers, they should be in the tree. And this does not work well with vendors. This is the main problem of Linux adoption.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by vtolkov
by TechGeek on Tue 7th Apr 2009 18:19 UTC in reply to "Comment by vtolkov"
TechGeek Member since:
2006-01-14

Well maybe you should pick one of the netbooks that actually supports linux like asus or dell. What is it with people buying hardware and then blaming linux because it wont run on the crap you bought. I cant run Vista on my lawnmower either, but I don't blame Microsoft for that.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by vtolkov
by vtolkov on Tue 7th Apr 2009 19:01 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by vtolkov"
vtolkov Member since:
2006-07-26

This crap works perfectly with XP. I was just explaining why Linux will suck on non-embedded markets by definition. Microsoft works with vendors, Linux can not. This is it.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: Comment by vtolkov
by Hiev on Tue 7th Apr 2009 19:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by vtolkov"
Hiev Member since:
2005-09-27

Microsoft works with vendors, Linux can not

You hit the nail there, there is no approach between the Linux Foundation and software vendors, and maybe its because there is no official Linux distro, even if one is picked "The community" would jump on them because "It's not the distro they like".

Linux it is so f--ked up, there is no way to help it.

Edited 2009-04-07 19:17 UTC

Reply Score: 1

can't buy
by Mellin on Tue 7th Apr 2009 20:06 UTC
Mellin
Member since:
2005-07-06

one without windows xp over here

Reply Score: 2

Windows Netbook Failure
by matej on Wed 8th Apr 2009 18:18 UTC
matej
Member since:
2007-05-27

Windows on netbooks is a big failure:
1) Microsoft was forced to drop its margins by virtually giving away Windows for free. I wonder how Microsoft's shareholders will value this "success" if the netbook market gets bigger than it still is right now? ;-)
2) Microsoft was forced to keep Windows XP alive even whilst it did not wanted to.
3) Microsoft is optimizing Windows 7 for netbooks, even though it still is a relatively small market. In other words: Microsoft is *inventing* again!

Conclusion:
1) Microsoft is no monopolist anymore on the netbook market: no more monopolistic margins on sales, no more pushing of Windows upgrades to the users' throats, and inventions required!
2) Linux broke Microsoft's monopoly on the netbook market and quadrupled its market share compared to its traditional end user markets. == Linux won (yes, paste tense!) on the netbook market!

To be continued for the desktop and laptop markets...the end of a monopoly, the end of an empire, the beginning of the end for large anti-Linux FUD marketing budgets, the start of real and fierce competition ;-)

Reply Score: 2

Failure
by MysterMask on Wed 8th Apr 2009 21:04 UTC
MysterMask
Member since:
2005-07-12

"Windows is such a huge success on netbooks compared to Linux."

Actually it's a big failure. Does anybody need another proof that Vista is not the technical superior, modular, all-better-than-XP Version of Windows?

Once again, Microsoft missed the boat by a big step. Talking about success in this case is nothing but brand marketing and has little to do with the real world.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by shiva
by shiva on Wed 8th Apr 2009 22:03 UTC
shiva
Member since:
2007-01-24

"Why Windows is such a huge success on netbooks compared to Linux? "

Microsoft illegal pressure over computer makers to put linux only in netbooks with low specs and forcing the byuyers to pay Microsoft tax if they want to buy a netbook with better hardware ?

Why can't computer makers offer ALL THE MODELS with the 2 options (windows and linux) whith the linux option obviously being the cheaper. People would may have the option to choose if they want to pay Microsoft tax or not.

Reply Score: 3

Microsoft's netbook boasts are FUD?
by lemur2 on Thu 9th Apr 2009 01:03 UTC
lemur2
Member since:
2007-02-17

Ubuntu accuses Microsoft of Linux netbook FUD

Well, it is FUD according to Canonical.

http://blog.canonical.com/?p=151

http://blogs.computerworld.com/ubuntu_accuses_microsoft_of_linux_ne...

Of course there is a significant benefit for users who do not select Ubuntu or another Linux distribution. The price of XP crashed last year due to competition. So even if you bought a netbook last year with XP - feel free to smile when you see an Ubuntu PC. It’s amazing what an open market can achieve.

Return rates on Linux - Separating fact from FUD

The really big news for the industry is that well-engineered Linux netbooks have similar return rates to XP. What makes a real difference to return rates is not whether it’s Linux or not, but the quality of the device’s hardware and the ability to fully partake in web and media experiences.


Edited 2009-04-09 01:06 UTC

Reply Score: 3