Windows FOSS on the Live CD -- the OOo2 question

Eric Dunbar eric.dunbar at
Wed Feb 22 11:16:46 GMT 2006

On 2/21/06, Derek Buranen <derek at> wrote:
>  Speaking as an IT consultant who deals with mostly Microsoft Windows
> systems on a day to day basis, I love the idea of OOo2.  It even comes with
> Java in the latest OpenOffice 2.01 package.  For me, it's going to be a long
> fight for Linux.  I know if the LiveCD has content for windows users, I have
> a reason to give it out.  People specifically ask for Firefox from me!
>  If I could have a "Firefox" CD that is actually Ubuntu, I could subvertly
> get people exposure to the Ubuntu logo, terminology like Linux/open source,
> and OpenOffice.
>  Similarly to the "Firefox" CD, I have been getting more inquiries about
> OpenOffice.  I could use the Ubuntu disk in a similar fashion to these
> people.
>  Rather than just downloading it for them and letting go on their marry
> Windows -using way, I could hand them an Ubuntu disk and say "It's on there"
> where they would be forced to get the nice menu that includes other options.
>  The way I get people to use Linux now is by hand-holding them.  Most people
> would enjoy the simple adventure of an Ubuntu LiveCD that has windows
> content and wouldn't need me every step of the way because of their previous
> exposure.
>  If we don't include any Open software on the Ubuntu LiveCD, I don't have
> that new reason to give people an Ubuntu CD.  No one I know is compelled
> enough to just run Linux and we need to help transitioning people.
>  My ideal list (in order of most desired to least):
>  Firefox  5.0mb
>  OpenOffice 76.3mb
>  Gaim w/GTK 6.6mb
>  Thunderbird 6.1
>  Gimp 7.7 (tell users to install Gaim first, this is to get GTK, but they
> don't have to know it's GTK)
>  ----
>  Total:  101.7

One danger with all of this...

People might be inclined to download the Ubuntu Live CD _just_ for the
Windows software. This is a lot of extra wasted d/l bandwidth just to
move a few apps that are only peripherally related to Ubuntu (not to
mention precious disk space used on the Ubuntu CD).

A second point is that GNU/Linux is _not_ the be-all and end-all of
open source software!

Why does a person _have_ to associate GNU/Linux with open source?
That's incorrect and runs counter to the whole notion of open source
which is that it's user empowerment that matters.

A lot more people are empowered if they get to combine Windows with
FireFox than if they use GNU/Linux with FireFox -- with the former
combo they get ease of use + the power of open source, with the latter
combo they get headaches + the pitfalls of open source + an app they
could have had with their other OS anyway.

And, if you're a Mac user, you don't even have to stray beyond what
Apple provides to use the developmental power of open source -- NetBSD
forms the basis of the operating system and many of the end user apps
are also open source, either in their entirety or for the most
important parts (e.g. Safari, Mac OS X's flag ship browser is a cousin
to Konqueror, X is part of the family ;-).


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