Linux en Dells

James Gray james.gray at
Tue Mar 13 23:57:57 UTC 2007

On Wed, 14 Mar 2007 03:33:32 am Eamonn Sullivan wrote:
> Actually, I think it doesn't matter at all what distro Dell picks.

I disagree slightly with this statement.  Whilst most (all?) Linux distro's 
are "free" as in "speech", they are not all "free" as in "beer".  RedHat 
Enterprise Desktop and SuSE Enterprise Desktop both cost $$ in licensing 
fees.  Those charges would be passed on to the end user and we would be in a 
similar boat to the one we're in now with the MS tax.

> We all use the same kernel, which is where most of the the hardware
> support is (i.e., device drivers). Dell will have to think carefully
> about the hardware (wireless chipset, graphics card) and be careful to
> choose parts that are recognized and supported by the Linux kernel.

*THIS* is the key to the whole argument IMHO.  One reason I've always built my 
own Linux boxes is so that I can ensure hardware compatibility.  Now that my 
time is becoming more and more precious, I'd much rather just get something 
off-the-shelf, but current bundled systems come with Windows (MS tax) and 
often have limited support under Linux.  Dell are moving in the right 
direction :)

> That's great for everyone. I may wipe off Red Hat or whatever distro
> Dell chooses, but because they chose *some* Linux and got it to work
> before it left the factory, I'm much more likely to be successful at
> installing Ubuntu.

Indeed :)  But see my comments earlier about "free" as in "beer" ;)


System going down at 5 this afternoon to install scheduler bug.
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