Slashdot runs an (unconfirmed so far though) story regarding Dell and other PC sellers, literally taking orders from Microsoft, that effectively from Aug, 26, are not allowed to sell PCs without an OS pre-installed. The rule does not specifically speak about not installing alternative OSes, but about having an OS always installed in the sold hardware. We should not forget the related Be, Inc.’s suit against Microsoft for the destruction of Be’s business resulting from the anticompetitive business practices of Microsoft. Our Take: IF true, Microsoft is gone too far and they should answer for it or recall this rule to the hardware vendors immediately. I like some of Microsoft’s technology, but their business practices continue to be as smelly as ever. UPDATE: We contacted MicroTel‘s Rich Hindman regarding their “no OS” PCs sold through Wal-Mart, and here is what he replied for the OSNews readers:“We haven’t been given such a directive from Microsoft nor has there been any conversations regarding the no OS requirement from them to Microtel. I speak with Microsoft about every two weeks via telephone and email and we visit with each other monthly and it never comes up in the meeting. The conversations with microsoft stem around “how can we help Microtel sell more Microsoft product”.
If such a directive were indeed given by Microsoft, it would seem to prohibit the freedom of choice. Microtel is about providing customers with the “power of choice”. There are other alternative operating systems in the world that are equally as good or better than the Microsoft operating systems. — Rich“