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Dell has confirmed that the company will be bringing Linux to future PCs and notebooks

Dell recently announced that it will expand support for Linux further than servers and the Precision workstation line.  The popular PC maker's first step will be to offer Linux pre-installed on both notebooks and desktops, Dell said in an online statement.

Dell asked for customer input in February on the company's IdeaStorm web site.  More than 100,000 responses were submitted to Dell, with more than 70 percent of respondents wanting some sort of pre-installed Linux product from Dell.

It may also take Dell a long time to get potential support issues sorted out before the Dell products enter the PC and workstation markets.  Linux users are now curious to see which version(s) of Linux will be installed on future products.  Users are more interested in kernel level and open driver support instead of particular Linux distributions, according to Dell.

Dell already has working relationships with Novell and Red Hat, both of which create popular Linux operating systems.  But other popular Linux alternatives include Ubuntu, Slackware, Debian and Lindows.

The company plans on asking for more user input regarding Linux and open source technologies.  Dell has had to rethink business plans due to increased competition with competitors such as Hewlett-Packard.

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RE: Should Microsoft worry?
By Ralph The Magician on 3/29/2007 4:11:13 PM , Rating: 1
The only distro that makes sense to pre-load is Red Hat or SuSE, because that's where the support is. I'd LOVE to see a custom tailored line of Red Hat workstations and notebooks. I mean, custom. Not just pre-loading the OS. Pick a selection of hardware and stick to it. Give me a keyboard without a Windows key. Don't just re-bag a notebook and throw a distro like Ubuntu on it with only community support for hardware/drivers. That does nothing for anyone.

Ideally, I'd like to see Ubuntu on these things, because that's a distro that could actually challenge Windows. It just isn't there yet. Maybe around v10 it will be ready to really stand up to the plate, but not yet.

Red Hat, on the other hand, is somewhat standardized and support does exist. They'd just have to work with them to create a real, long-term solution. Red Hat notebooks with everything working right out of the box would be pretty damn sweet.

I have a feeling though that all Dell is going to do is pick a particular model from a couple existing lines and throw OpenSuSE on it. Garbage.

RE: Should Microsoft worry?
By johnsonx on 3/29/2007 6:32:13 PM , Rating: 2
Instead of OpenSUSE, I'd guess Dell would install Novell's SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop or the Red Hat equivalent thereof. Novell would be particularly keen to make this happen, though Dell seems to have more going on with Red Hat.

RE: Should Microsoft worry?
By smitty3268 on 3/29/2007 6:41:33 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. That way they can simply buy support contracts from Red Hat or Novell instead of having to say it is community supported. From a PR standpoint it also gives them a reason to keep charging the same amount as they do for Windows, which they'll probably need to do to make up for the lost revenue they get by installing crapware.

The good news is that they seem to understand the way to go is by having linux-friendly hardware, which means it would be simple to install whatever distro you want.

RE: Should Microsoft worry?
By cheetah2k on 3/29/2007 9:29:34 PM , Rating: 2
I have a feeling though that all Dell is going to do is pick a particular model from a couple existing lines and throw OpenSuSE on it. Garbage.

It might be garbage, but its a damn good start!

"We basically took a look at this situation and said, this is bullshit." -- Newegg Chief Legal Officer Lee Cheng's take on patent troll Soverain
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