[Bug 1] Re: Microsoft has a majority market share

Conrad Knauer atheoi at gmail.com
Thu Dec 20 00:34:29 UTC 2007

"It is not a surprise that they also want to put a stamp on the Ubuntu
desktop, and if we try and stop that, we are stepping on Dell's

If they wanted to rebrand the systems 'Dellbuntu' that would be
different.  This cheapens the name Ubuntu and mocks its core principles.
It is also a step backwards; a proprietary Flash plugin and DVD player
software are examples of exactly what Bug #1 is about:

"Non-free software is holding back innovation in the IT industry,
restricting access to IT to a small part of the world's population and
limiting the ability of software developers to reach their full
potential, globally. This bug is widely evident in the PC industry."

Up until now, despite some annoyance I've had about the way Dell was
going about handling its Ubuntu systems (including not selling them here
in Canada ;), I planned to replace my current system with a Dell when it
got older.  But if they're going to pull games like this too, I'm going
to reconsider.

I note that Mr. Shuttleworth has blogged about the proprietary DVD
playback as a good thing: "the US patent landscape makes that
impossible, so for the moment this requires proprietary software"


Why does it have to be preinstalled though?  Why can't users be given
the option to download it like Real Player from Canonical's partner
repository?  If its not even gratis, that is a very slippery slope Dell
is heading down indeed.

But arguments for 'legal' encrypted DVD playback aside, what
justification is there for the preloaded proprietary Flash plugin?

Also I note in the comments to that post:

"Excellent news! Next step is audio and video codecs - mainly mp3, wmv
and others."

What is there to stop Dell from including all sorts of non-free codecs
and STILL calling it Ubuntu?  At what point does Ubuntu slide down the
slippery slope and the "Ubuntu promise" become a bad joke?

Microsoft has a majority market share
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