What Dells Desktop Linux Move Means

Opinion: This isn't just big news for Linux desktop fans, it's a red-letter day for all PC users as Microsoft gets serious competition on the mainstream x86 for the first time in years.

In 2004, the Boston Red Sox won the World Series. In 2007, Dell, a top computer manufacturer, is introducing pre-installed Ubuntu Linux on its main PC lines. The worlds of baseball and the desktop will never be the same.

In both cases, people worked long and hard to reach the top. In Linuxs case, the top is the recognition that it is not just a hobby operating system, and that it is not an operating system thats only for servers. With its arrival on Dells desktops, Linux has proven that it can compete in the same league with Mac OS and Windows.

This is only the start. I have reason to believe that Hewlett-Packard, Lenovo, and Toshiba will soon be joining Dell in making Linux easily available for desktop users.

Some of you may be thinking, "Why is this such a big deal?" Linspire has been successful in getting smaller OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) to offer Linux on the desktop for years. Some small OEMs, such as All Around Geeks and System76, offer their own house-brand Linux desktops. Other companies, such as EmperorLinux, have long sold brand-name computers from Lenovo, Panasonic, Sharp, Sony, and even Dell after they installed Linux on them.

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