Linux Desktop News

A look at the latest headlines in the Linux desktop arena.

by Web Editor

What's a Koobox?

If you're looking to buy an affordable desktop system that comes with Linux and a whole bunch of key free and open-source applications already installed, take a look at the new line of Koobox computers. Koobox computers are a joint offering from Mirus Personal Computers and Linspire. According to the Web site, Kooboxes are "only sold pre-installed, tested and certified with Linspire Linux".

So far, three Koobox systems are available: Essential Koobox, Multimedia Koobox and Performance Koobox. For $299 US, the Essential Koobox offers an AMD Sempron 2800+ processor; 256MB of DDRAM; a 40GB hard drive; CDRW 48x24x48; onboard network, video and sound; five USB ports; an Internet keyboard; an optical mouse; a u-ATX black tower case with a 300W power supply; 90 days limited parts and labor warranty; the Linspire OS; virus protection and Web filtering software; and OpenOffice.org. It also comes with a one-year subscription to CNR, so you can access more than 2,000 free applications. Monitors are available for purchase separately. That's a lot of stuff for $300.

Need Help Deciding on a Distribution?

If you're unsure which Linux distribution will suit your needs best, maybe taking a quiz can help. Zegenie Studios is offering an on-line quiz that tells you which of the major distributions is best for you. Kind of like taking a Cosmo quiz, Zegenie asks a series of questions that weighs your technical and Linux knowledge, your system capabilities and your computing needs and returns a short list of distributions that best fit your responses. The quiz is pretty quick to take and doesn't get in to too much detail, but if you're at a loss about where to start with picking a distro, it can help.

Desktop Linux Client Survey 2005 Results

Open Source Development Labs released the results of its 2005 Desktop Linux Survey in December, which found that a killer e-mail application is needed before Linux can find wider adoption in the desktop arena. Survey results show that e-mail is the number-one computer application, ahead of Internet use and office productivity, regardless of the platform underneath.

Perhaps surprisingly, the top reasons cited for companies switching to Linux are "Employees requesting Linux" and competitors using Linux. Security and availability of source code, which are key concerns for Linux developers, did show up in the responses, but they weren't among the top three reasons cited for switching.

The survey also found that the top three reasons for not switching to Linux are lack of application support, peripheral support and end-user training.

As the survey itself notes, this year's finding are interesting and point to a shift in how the Linux desktop is viewed in terms of feasibility and usability. Most companies no longer need to be convinced that Linux is a viable option for the desktop; they're aware of its advantages. The desktop users are making their demands, and now it's up to Linux developers to meet those demands.

Web Editor - Fri, 2006-01-06 19:49.
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Making toast

One fella on a forum board summed it up for me and a lot of others (concerning operating systems),he said something like this-

My Grandmother likes toast,she doesn't want to know about modern farming principles,how the raw grain is processed,how product is distributed,or the technical aspect of the toaster....she just likes toast.

I tried Ubuntu,Red Hat,Suse,and the nickle-and-dime you to death Linspire 4.5. We (Family computer) dual boot XP and Xandros.The family can run them without me standing over their shoulders, admin on both systems are easy and usually quick and while Xandros doesn't like or recommend it I can install some debian packages.....we just like toast.

Preacher102 (not verified) - M - , 2006-02-13 10:43.

Vibrant Idea

Vibrant Media has a great system -- mouse over a page on a Linux site and get ads for WindowsEx-Pea. Ah, the song is over but the malady lingers on.

Gary (not verified) - Tue, 2006-01-17 14:32.

Linspire :@

Thats very nice they offer those pc's, i hope it's all 100% supported linux hardware
But what about those who don't want linspire, or have used a particular distro for over 3 years and are more then happy with it (slackware in my case). I don't need that click and run. Can't they offer those pc's without linspire possibly safing quite some money on the linspire license making it even < 250 $ (‚ā¨). Would be nice no ? now they are practically doing the same that M$ does; offer cheap pc's (ibm clones) with a pre installed OS (linspire). It's a good initiatif for newbies or people who want to learn linux but for me ... I won't likely use this service untill they either offer it with my distro of choice without the > 40 $ license or just give it without OS.

They could create a lot of revenues that way, because for most gnu/linux & *BSD users it would safe them from the hassle and headaches that go with searching for supported hardware. Anyway this is my opinion

goarilla (not verified) - Wed, 2006-01-11 09:31.

Your complaining about $40! Two problems with that...

Linspire's OEM license is $10. The CNR service is $20 a year normally. Koobox got it for less then this. They didn't pay anywhere near $40.

While you may use other Linux distributions you shouldn't complain that they decided to use Linspire instead of XYZ. You should actually be glad they chose Linspire over your preferred distribution because it increases the number of potential Linux users which contributes more money to open source.

If they had used slackware they would not be contributing any money to open source. Linspire heavily invests in Desktop Linux and releases all it's own companies written programs source code other then CNR & the Linspire DVD Player (this is because of licensing of codecs and so forth). Xandros does not support open source, they are like Apple in that they take open source and use it where it suites them. Actually they are more like Microsoft since they don't contribute back at all and Apple does (although only where it suites them). I'm glad Novell has put money into open source but they don't share the Desktop Linux vision so they are doing a disservice in that regard. Redhat has abandoned Desktop Linux years ago. They now only serve business users.

You on the other hand being a more experience Linux user can go and install another Linux distribution. You have not really lost anything by contributing to Linspire as it will in turn go to supporting programs you likely use and since you've contributed so little it's really sad that you should be complaining now.

Chris (not verified) - Sun, 2006-02-05 15:27.

linspire

I heard at one time the Linspire OEM license to builders was a flat fee per month. With that license they could ship as many PCs with Linspire as they wanted. So if they sold 2 or 200 systems with Linspire loaded the license fee was the same. So even if they
shipped you a PC without Linspire they don't save anything and
neither would you.

Andrew in Chicago (not verified) - Wed, 2006-01-18 17:08.

Linspire Five-O

My business is a Linspire Authorized Builder/Reseller. There is no monthly fee for including Linspire with my computers. There is a charge per copy of Linspire Five-O (Builder Edition). Actually there are three, depending on which one you include with the computer.

i.e. Linspire Five-O by itself, Linspire Five-O with one year of CNR Service, and Linspire Five-O with one year of CNR Service and DVD Player. :)

Regards,
LinspireMan

LinspireMan (not verified) - Thu, 2006-01-26 10:37.

What's with Tux Magazine and

What's with Tux Magazine and Linspire? Such infatuation cannot be overlooked. There are few projects and distros that are really pushed under the presumption/excuse that they are "user-friendly" whilst it is obvious some people in Tux think they are sufficiently Windoze-like to attract new users and make them feel at home (not /home it would seem). Why is that? Do some ignorant, self-righteous editors have right to decide what's best for the user? Doesn't Bill Gates do the same? If we want to attract users which are so stupid that they should not even own a computer, then our path is right down to abyss. I will quote or better, paraphrase recent comment made by Linus himself regarding Gnome (although I think he is wrong in that particular case):

"If you think your users are idiots, only idiots will use it (your system/DE...)."

Petar (not verified) - Sat, 2006-01-21 23:26.

Get over it!

It's ignorant comments like these that make people dislike Linux. Linux is not just for people like you who think too much of themselves. Stop being such a stuck up prick and get over it.

An - ymous (not verified) - Sun, 2006-02-05 15:33.

OMG

I cannot believe how you think it is OK to insult beginning Linux users and people that generally have problems operating a computer. This just confirms my opinion that some Linux geeks do not see the potential in what Linspire, Inc. has been doing for Linux on the desktop. How do you expect Linux to succeed in the marketplace with a pathetic attitude like that? If you were working for my business, I would have fired you immediately without hesitation.

I use Linspire Five-O every day, and I don't think it is anything like Windows. It is far from being like Windows XP. Please... It is about time that some of you hardcore Linux geeks stop bashing Linspire, Inc. for what they do with Linspire. It has become quite sickening already.

I have tried various flavours of Linux and I like Linspire Five-O a lot. I want to do my work today and at this moment, not fiddle around with a Linux distribution for hours or days to get it to work properly.

Before you go spouting off that I am a noob, etc., I will just let you know that I am a Computer Analyst/Programmer, hence an IT professional. And this IT pro loves Linspire!

Regards,
LinspireMan

LinspireMan (not verified) - Thu, 2006-01-26 10:32.

This is the same attitude

This is the same attitude that I get in chat rooms when I try to find out what linux os is best for newbies that want to learn.

By the way, I never got an answer. So, if anyone has any suggestions please let me know.

An - ymous (not verified) - Thu, 2006-02-02 18:34.

For a newbie who wants to

For a newbie who wants to learn - Ubuntu. Period.

Petar (not verified) - Wed, 2006-02-08 07:57.

Dear LinspireMan, first, it

Dear LinspireMan,

first, it is common courtesy to sign your full name under such passionate opinion. Second, you're partially right. My wording was not best for it have never been my intention to insult noobs, nor think they're generally stupid. I was referring to the Editor's attitude towards the 'desktop Linux' issue, where he (they) found KDE/Linpsire combo the best one just because it least involved users input. Overlooking the problems, e.g Linspire running on root account! Oh, don't worry about security, let us not confuse the users by making a separate account! how will those little, stupid people get around such an arcane concept as a 'separate user account'! It is them who think their users are stupid, and I was revolting against that attitude. Ok, I mentioned those who cannot power their machines properly, but as an IT professional, you should know there are heaps and bounds of them. I'm not saying Linspire is bad OS, on the contrary; but I think it is ludicrous to recognise it as desktop king and promote it as such while other distros have ten times the user base. Same goes for KDE vs Gnome issue. So, be sure you had got your facts right before you fired someone.

Greetings

Petar

Petar (not verified) - Sat, 2006-01-28 21:03.

Linspire runs on root account

Linspire encourages running on root account, the world is flat and you shouldn't swim after eating. Yes, we know are facts.

Roy (not verified) - Wed, 2006-03-29 15:34.