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Prisma
December 12th, 2007, 06:34 PM
Linux To Take Over The Low-End PC Market?

I read several articles on the web about this topic. It looks like business analysts are convinced that because of the public's lack of interest on Vista and that it can't run on low-end PCs leaves Linux as the only real alternative. Also Linux is free so, they said, MS cant compete.
According to some, all this will start to happen in the first quarter of 2008 with the introduction of more cheap laptops, subnotebooks and desktops like the $200 Gos PC.

Do you guys think this is possible? I mean a take over by Linux on a whole market segment?

aaaantoine
December 12th, 2007, 08:23 PM
So long as the hardware vendors bundle Linux, yes, it will sell in great numbers.

This will last until low-end PCs are capable of running Vista smoothly. I don't know when that'll happen, but the FOSS movement has a limited window of opportunity.

Lster
December 12th, 2007, 08:29 PM
Yup; and then it will seep into other areas and by then OS X will be huge. My prediction for global Linux domination is 2010 (based mostly on nothing :)).

Lostincyberspace
December 12th, 2007, 08:30 PM
Vista is the next ME it wont ever be able to take the low end of the PC market. but once Microsoft stops selling xp then Linux will take over the gap.

tgalati4
December 12th, 2007, 08:33 PM
I think you will see more internet appliances that run embedded linux on Via low-watt processors. Having a 12-watt appliance that streams music from your refrigerator running linux for under $100, I can see a market.

Car computers, refrigerator/kitchen computers, kid's learning computers. It's an exciting time in the FOSS community.

maniacmusician
December 12th, 2007, 08:44 PM
Vista is the next ME it wont ever be able to take the low end of the PC market. but once Microsoft stops selling xp then Linux will take over the gap.
OSX will take over that gap, and is already starting to. I'm not a huge fan of OSX myself, but I find it to be a much more pleasant environment than XP.

Although, I suppose if you mean the economic gap left by XP, then yes, linux could take over some of it. Apple isn't exactly cheap.

Overall, Linux + Low end = success at this point in time, though we have to be careful not to be stuck with the stigma of "the operating system that runs on old computers," since there's a lot of mid and high level computing things that we can do and others can't.

dgoodma
December 12th, 2007, 08:48 PM
Speaking as an IT person in a large company, 40,000 users; I do not see Windows being displaced. Linux, and Ubuntu have come a long way compared to when I last looked at it 2 or 3 years ago. But, too often, you still have to "know what you are doing" to do something. Many of our users are not wanting to learn much new... this would change a lot of their processes and knowledge needed. Windows is too ingrained in our support processes. We are slow followers, not fast implementors. This could happen if Linux makes a larger dent first in other companies.

It is fun to have a lever with Microsoft though....

gn2
December 12th, 2007, 08:57 PM
I voted yes in the poll as I would love to see Linux becoming more popular and helping with the developement of low-cost hardware, but as time moves on the ladder on hardware is being pulled up all the time, it won't be long till it's difficult to find hardware that will not be able to run Vista.

The Asus Eee is a splendid case in point. Not too long ago the cheapest equivalent was the Flybook which costs massively more.

sanderella
December 12th, 2007, 09:00 PM
I voted yes because I hope so. I've got my hubby using Ubuntu, and now my sister, complaining that her disc is full, is very interested.

You techy guys gotta be nice to us stupid old folk, there could be a lot more coming in here.:KS

elcasey
December 12th, 2007, 09:04 PM
I don't understand why some of you are saying that OS X is somehow bridging a gap in the low-end PC market...Apple products are very expensive and always will be. It's what lets Apple zealots feel good about paying for software that's usually a year or more behind what FOSS offers. You won't find an Intel Mac that isn't capable of running Vista as well.

OS X is gaining market share, certainly, but it's competing directly with Windows, not with FOSS. No proprietary OS is ever going to directly compete with GNU/Linux because they're not used by the same demographic. A former Ubuntu user I know (now a raging Mactard) used to like to argue that, "Linux just won't sell until it becomes more like Apple ." And that's the strength of FOSS - it's [i]not for sale like Windows or OS X is.

Having said that, I still think a UNIX-like OS is a bad choice for people between the levels of "basic" and "power user." If all you need is a web browser, an email client, streaming audio and an IM client, it can be a brilliant solution. But once you start installing your own stuff, unless you get comfortable with the CLI and learn about how Linux actually functions you cannot maintain it at a level that's on par with Windows or OS X. Those OSes have everything automated because that's who they're geared toward - basic to power users. The power of UNIX operating systems is also a drawback when it comes to people who are not experienced and either don't want to learn or don't have time to learn how to properly maintain a UNIX-like OS.

Regardless of who takes over what "market segments," the strides that just Ubuntu, not even counting the numerous other distros, has made in "user-friendliness" is quite heartening and shows promise for a GNU/Linux OS that will be "n00b-friendly" at some point -- but it's not here yet.

kellemes
December 12th, 2007, 09:16 PM
I voted yes in the poll as I would love to see Linux becoming more popular and helping with the developement of low-cost hardware, but as time moves on the ladder on hardware is being pulled up all the time, it won't be long till it's difficult to find hardware that will not be able to run Vista.

Good point..
And Ubuntu seems to actract a lot of users wanting the same comfort and eye-candy as they're used to on Windows. Ubuntu's hunger for recources is getting greater every release..

I voted no, because I answered the question instead of stating my wish.

aysiu
December 12th, 2007, 09:19 PM
Sales of the gOS, XO laptops, and Eee PCs indicate that this is the way Linux will be able to penetrate the desktop (or laptop?) market. Everex is planning to release a cheap gOS laptop in January to compete with ASUS's Eee PCs.

And, no, the low-end market is not for a company with 40,000 employees. It's for home users on the go who want a tiny laptop to bring around with them to surf the web and check email with.

Prisma
December 12th, 2007, 11:52 PM
I think the lower prices would be an opportunity for people who never considered the possibility to buy a computer before to actually own one. I am really optimistic about this new market. In the no so distant future we could see ultra low end sub-laptop for less $100 on sale in Walmart. :KS

Bruce M.
December 13th, 2007, 02:47 AM
I voted Yes, because I think it is possible.
However a No is feasible too as I don't thing it is probable.


I voted yes in the poll as I would love to see Linux becoming more popular and helping with the developement of low-cost hardware, but as time moves on the ladder on hardware is being pulled up all the time, it won't be long till it's difficult to find hardware that will not be able to run Vista.


Good point..
And Ubuntu seems to actract a lot of users wanting the same comfort and eye-candy as they're used to on Windows. Ubuntu's hunger for recources is getting greater every release..

I voted no, because I answered the question instead of stating my wish.

It's that "as time moves on the ladder" that just might make it possible. Get a few hundred thousand (million) low end PCs running Linux going world wide during that time and people may not want to go to Windows.

After all, lets say I have one. I'd be checking out the "full distros" in places like, well, here. And I'd see power-type PC's running the same system with more bells and whistles. I'd also know or learn that Windows is a virus laden, security lacking, malware magnate that I'd have to pay for.

Time moves on the ladder:

I'm now using a newer low-end PC, that can run Windows Vista, or a more advanced version of Linux. ( Remember, you said the new low-ends will run Vista, then they will also run a more advance Linux. ) The "comfort" with a secure OS that I already know VS a lot of money for an OS that isn't secure is going to be important.

I now have a choice! With my newer low-end PC, stay with an OS I know, because now I am comfortable with it, and install: Gutsy Gibbon or HH, or JJ, or maybe the latest, KK, will run on it. Or pay for that other virus laden, security lacking, malware magnate OS!

I'd let my comfort level and my pocket book be my guide.

Just my $0.02 worth. ( The change from buying my new low-end PC. :) )

rune0077
December 13th, 2007, 02:54 AM
I voted "Not a snowballs chance in Hell that will ever happen but it's a nice thought". You can't exactly buy a "low end computer" these days: if you cough up for a new machine, it'll be able to run Vista, and companies want user friendliness before free (otherwise they would have been running Linux already), so my guess is, they'll stick with Vista. Linux will dominate the server market due to stability and security, but it won't get a foothold in laptop/desktop IMO.

jrusso2
December 13th, 2007, 04:50 AM
As soon as regular users find out their wireless won't work, office won't run and they can't use their windows sofware and printers they will be returning them in droves.

jflaker
December 13th, 2007, 05:06 AM
As soon as regular users find out their wireless won't work, office won't run and they can't use their windows sofware and printers they will be returning them in droves.

Driver support is getting better, MUCH BETTER than a year ago. There are replacements for each windows program out there. The GAMES are lacking, which will drive potential users away......this is where the Linux community need to drive the big companies like Blizzard and others to develop their games for the Linux users of the world.

The average user does not know what Linux is. They do not understand Open Source and they are slow to adapt to new things unless it is hyped, much like Micro$oft did with Vista.

Next step for for the Linux community is some guerrilla advertising so users can see for themselves WHY it is an option to Windows or Apple. Where the money will come from to do this....Hmmm, good question.

ardoaamch
December 13th, 2007, 11:54 PM
There's a nice little forum at http://gosforums.org/. It would be a good place to discuss low-cost Linux PCs.

gn2
December 14th, 2007, 10:17 AM
Ubuntu's hunger for recources is getting greater every release..


Indeed it is, which is why my old PIII laptop has been running Zenwalk for the last three days.
Xubuntu 7.10 and 8.04Alpha1 just will not run well on it at all.
I had reverted back to Xubuntu 7.04 but decided to trial Zenwalk on a spare hard drive.
Zenwalk 4.8 just flies compared to Xubuntu 7.10.
Xubuntu 8.04Alpha1 took over FIVE hours to install!
Zenwalk was up and running in half an hour.
Ah the joy of Linux, having so many choices and excellent options.

Paqman
December 14th, 2007, 10:50 AM
Interestingly, Mark Shuttleworth seems to think that although the technical case for Linux on low-end computers is sound, the business case is poor.

http://www.markshuttleworth.com/archives/100

I hope he's wrong. A good, simple pre-installed Linux distro makes a kick-**** internet appliance, which is what people are buying at the low-end of the market.

Personally, I think we need a shift in hardware thinking. I think there's potentially a huge market for low-wattage, low cost mini-itx computers running Linux. For people who just want to get online (and maybe use some web aps) a small, green, quiet PC makes more sense than the current overpowered boxes that most people are talked into buying.

gn2
December 14th, 2007, 11:06 AM
Personally, I think we need a shift in hardware thinking. I think there's potentially a huge market for low-wattage, low cost mini-itx computers running Linux. For people who just want to get online (and maybe use some web aps) a small, green, quiet PC makes more sense than the current overpowered boxes that most people are talked into buying.

I agree 100%

it's another illustration of the 80:20 rule, 80% of users use less than 20% of their PC's potential.

You just don't need a Core 2 Duo CPU, 2gb RAM and a whacking great graphics card for most peoples computing requirements.

de_valentin
December 14th, 2007, 11:34 AM
I hope Yes, but that is the point. Hope

As long as vista is not capable of running on a low-end pc there is good chance.
I don't think that will ever happen or at least not before a now high-end has become a low-end pc. And before that time ms will or should have new os and that will probably be just resource demanding as vista is now.

I just think that ms will make an XP-version for the XO, that version will be very cheap and will be able to run on a low-end pc. The only reaon to do that is to keep linux of the market.

just my 2 cents

dysolve
December 14th, 2007, 03:39 PM
I would love for linux to take over the low end PC market.. but as of last week i think I would have to say that the low end PC market is NOT where Linux belongs or will work..

The reason I say last week is because I learnt something very interesting. I heard a company want to buy all new PC's and they need 30 or so.. now they only have enough money for about 15 and that was getting non. dual cores with 1gig ram but the sting for them was the OS and appz.. they want and had to have MS Office..

When I tried to explain Ubuntu all they could say was does it run office and I said it comes with open office.. thats where the discussion ended..

Linux its self is not the problems its that stuff is called something different and looks a little different. Companys DO NOT want to spend they money teaching people to use now programs.....

Linux is no harder then OS X or XP/vista to use its just different people who buy low end PC's do not want different they want what they are use to..

thats just my 2cents worth ..

aysiu
December 14th, 2007, 03:46 PM
I would love for linux to take over the low end PC market.. but as of last week i think I would have to say that the low end PC market is NOT where Linux belongs or will work..

The reason I say last week is because I learnt something very interesting. I heard a company want to buy all new PC's and they need 30 or so.. now they only have enough money for about 15 and that was getting non. dual cores with 1gig ram but the sting for them was the OS and appz.. they want and had to have MS Office..

When I tried to explain Ubuntu all they could say was does it run office and I said it comes with open office.. thats where the discussion ended.. That's odd.

Your example actually seems to make a really good case for Linux taking over the low-end PC market. The low-end PCs in question (XO laptop, Eee PC, Everex gOS computers) do not have 1 GB of RAM and are not meant to be corporate workstations.

They are essentially on-the-go internet kiosks.

LaRoza
December 14th, 2007, 06:59 PM
Looking at the trends of the PC market, every Windows release results in a jump in hardware requirements.

I have an old computer with 256 RAM that was bought when XP first came out, and it was a good computer then, but can't be a Windows computer any longer except as a legacy system.

The new computers in stores come with 1 - 2 GiB of RAM, not because the average users uses that much, but because Vista demands it.

Linux can certainly take advantage of high end computers, but it is not a requirement. Ubuntu itself can a memory instensive OS for my new juiced up computer, but it can also work just fine on the afore mentioned old computer.

Linux is light, by itself, and how heavy it gets relies on what packages are added. What other modern OS can work fine on computers from 12 years ago, yet work well on 64 bit multi core machines of today?

rune0077
December 14th, 2007, 07:09 PM
Linux can certainly take advantage of high end computers, but it is not a requirement. Ubuntu itself can a memory instensive OS for my new juiced up computer, but it can also work just fine on the afore mentioned old computer.


Can't speak for all Linux distro, but Ubuntu certainly doesn't take full advantage of a high end system. Ubuntu has never used my full RAM, ever (it never uses more than roughly half a gig of it), and my processors only very rarely works at more than 50% capacity, and most of the time not that at all.

Ubuntu is cool on low end systems, 'cause you'll have an OS that can compete with most other systems, but still running on outdated hardware. On high end systems though, I get a much bigger kick out of running Vista (it makes me say: "That's why I bought those dual processors").

LaRoza
December 14th, 2007, 07:14 PM
Can't speak for all Linux distro, but Ubuntu certainly doesn't take full advantage of a high end system. Ubuntu has never used my full RAM, ever (it never uses more than roughly half a gig of it), and my processors only very rarely works at more than 50% capacity, and most of the time not that at all.

Ubuntu is cool on low end systems, 'cause you'll have an OS that can compete with most other systems, but still running on outdated hardware. On high end systems though, I get a much bigger kick out of running Vista (it makes me say: "That's why I bought those dual processors").

Are you trying to use all your RAM? Ubuntu never uses all of my RAM either, but that is because it doesn't have to.

My dual core processors and RAM are used when they are needed, but usually, less than .5 of a GiB are used, and a small percentage of my CPU's are used.

If you have a 64 bit processor, and are using 32 bit Ubuntu, you won't be able to take advantage of your hardware as much.

rune0077
December 14th, 2007, 07:25 PM
Are you trying to use all your RAM? Ubuntu never uses all of my RAM either, but that is because it doesn't have to.

My dual core processors and RAM are used when they are needed, but usually, less than .5 of a GiB are used, and a small percentage of my CPU's are used.

If you have a 64 bit processor, and are using 32 bit Ubuntu, you won't be able to take advantage of your hardware as much.

I'm running 64 bit. I know that Ubuntu doesn't need that much RAM, but then the old saying go, that "unused RAM is wasted RAM". Vista is much better optimized at using tons of RAM (and it needs it too, yes): like, when I defrag my Vista drive, it spends almost all my RAM and a lot of CPU power doing this (making the defragging very fast), but if I start running other application while the defrag is running, the system immediately frees up RAM and CPU power for the new applications, slowing down the defragging process.

This is what I would consider optimized for high end systems: making use of every available scrap of resource, even when they're not really needed, but without hogging them when they do become needed elsewhere. Ubuntu just uses what it needs to get through the day, when it could (if optimized) have used all the extra resource to get there a little faster and smoother.

Mr.Auer
December 15th, 2007, 02:11 AM
Erm...I dont think your assesment of this is actually true :)
Why do you think supercomputer clusters run Linux and not Vista...
Give me a comparison that shows Vista uses your cpu cycles more efficiently than Linux does in heavy computing and ill listen ;)

DouglasAWh
December 15th, 2007, 02:27 AM
when I defrag my Vista drive, it spends almost all my RAM and a lot of CPU power doing this (making the defragging very fast), but if I start running other application while the defrag is running, the system immediately frees up RAM and CPU power for the new applications, slowing down the defragging process.

Yes....but, um, you don't need to defrag Linux, so I fail to see your point. Sounds to me like Windoze is good at doing pointless things very well...

gn2
December 15th, 2007, 08:20 AM
Yes....but, um, you don't need to defrag Linux,

Depends what file system you use.

Erdaron
December 15th, 2007, 09:18 AM
I'm running 64 bit. I know that Ubuntu doesn't need that much RAM, but then the old saying go, that "unused RAM is wasted RAM". Vista is much better optimized at using tons of RAM (and it needs it too, yes): like, when I defrag my Vista drive, it spends almost all my RAM and a lot of CPU power doing this (making the defragging very fast), but if I start running other application while the defrag is running, the system immediately frees up RAM and CPU power for the new applications, slowing down the defragging process.

This is what I would consider optimized for high end systems: making use of every available scrap of resource, even when they're not really needed, but without hogging them when they do become needed elsewhere. Ubuntu just uses what it needs to get through the day, when it could (if optimized) have used all the extra resource to get there a little faster and smoother.

That's a little like saying a Hummer is well-optimized to consume all the gasoline you can afford.

While I see your point, I'd like to counter. I don't think system processes should ever consume most of system resources. The reason I beef up my computer with extra ram and CPU muscle is so that I can run sweet sweet games, or run my scientific calculations and simulations in a shorter amount of time. The OS should stay out of my way.

If Vista manages its resources as well as you say, that's excellent job, Vista. However, if you half the resources, Vista won't run at all, but Linux would be just fine.

(I'm sorry if I sound like a MS-basher... that was not my intention.)

However, the point is that for many, many people applications that they need to run are fairly low-spec. Subtract costs of extra hardware and OS licensing, and a machine fit for those people would cost a fraction of what the current market is trying to sell them.

Sure you can pick up groceries in a Hummer. But a Civic / Focus will do the job just as well, and for a small percentage of the cost.

popch
December 15th, 2007, 09:29 AM
Windows needs a virus scanning program plus an additional firewall while other environments do not. That alone cuts down the system requirements quite a lot.

rune0077
December 16th, 2007, 04:00 PM
Erm...I dont think your assesment of this is actually true :)
Why do you think supercomputer clusters run Linux and not Vista...
Give me a comparison that shows Vista uses your cpu cycles more efficiently than Linux does in heavy computing and ill listen ;)

That probably has as much to do with stability and security, as it does with optimization. Anyhows, my example was aimed at Ubuntu or other popular distros, whereas your example usually run on much more efficient commandline only Linux systems (and probably Unix far more often than Linux). Adding desktops and frontend GUI's tends to de-optimize things considerably.


Yes....but, um, you don't need to defrag Linux, so I fail to see your point. Sounds to me like Windoze is good at doing pointless things very well...

Well, that depends on what you use Linux for. Linux do need defragging once in a rare while. Not even remotely as often as Vista though: my Vista task manager insists I do it once a week. There's a thread around somewhere that discuss Linux's need (or lack of need) for defragging, but I'm to lazy to link to it for the moment.

rune0077
December 16th, 2007, 04:07 PM
While I see your point, I'd like to counter. I don't think system processes should ever consume most of system resources. The reason I beef up my computer with extra ram and CPU muscle is so that I can run sweet sweet games, or run my scientific calculations and simulations in a shorter amount of time. The OS should stay out of my way.


Well, I don't know. I get what you're saying, but on the other hand, people do buy computers with lots and lots of firepower these days (yes, to play games), so why not make an OS that draws some benefits from all that muscle?



If Vista manages its resources as well as you say, that's excellent job, Vista. However, if you half the resources, Vista won't run at all, but Linux would be just fine.


Couldn't agree more. It's great that Vista runs great on a high-end machine, but it's not great that it won't run at all on anything less. I was lucky that my first try at Vista was on a newly bought system, because it runs well and smooth. Many of my friends, who didn't buy new machines but still payed for Vista and then scraped their XP, has had very different experiences, and that's bad buisness for sure (especially because Microsoft keeps insisting that, yes, Vista will run on 512mb RAM, even though everyone who has tried it complains that it won't).

SonicSteve
December 17th, 2007, 06:48 PM
Y My prediction for global Linux domination is 2010 (based mostly on nothing :)).

I like your prediction and your honesty. I'm not exactly going to hold my breath waiting for your 2010 prediction but it made me smile.

miniweat
December 18th, 2007, 01:33 AM
The discussion was meant to start off for low end machines if I am correct. Linux is an incredible option for someone who wants to run say a subnotebook or a green machine. Unfortunately it will be quite a long time most likely before Linux can be competitive in large business and gaming which are two of the biggest sellers for computers at this time. The emergence of the Eee Pc, Gos Pc, and Zonbu machines show that these sort of machines are becomnig marketable. It is only a matter of time before Linux is able to start getting some headway into the market. I believe though that is is the comercialized distros however that will gain more from this than FOSS distros.

lancest
December 18th, 2007, 02:09 AM
My laptop dealer recently started selling ASUS Red Flag Linux laptops. He has asked me to change them over to Ubuntu (and Compiz). There are many hundreds of computer dealers in this area and i predict a considerable number will test the Linux OS waters soon. The future is bright for free software.

Lostincyberspace
December 18th, 2007, 03:31 AM
Thanks to you tube, and all the compiz videos, more people are realizing that Linux isn't just for geeks.

SonicSteve
December 18th, 2007, 04:49 AM
. It is only a matter of time before Linux is able to start getting some headway into the market. I believe though that is is the comercialized distros however that will gain more from this than FOSS distros.

If those commercialized distros are true to the license they are bound by (GPL) the FOSS community should stand to benefit perhaps even more than the commercial groups. FOSS would be free to implement any of the new features seen in the commercial distro, correct? Is that not how it would work?

Prisma
December 18th, 2007, 09:15 AM
I think the competition is about to intensify next year. Take a look at these new pictures of the upcoming Everex "cloudbook" to be released in the first quarter of 2008.
Rumours on the web said it will come with a 1.2Ghz via processor, webcam, 30 GB HDD and 512 mb of ram.

http://cache.gizmodo.com/assets/resources/2007/12/cloudbook.jpg

http://cache.gizmodo.com/assets/resources/2007/12/cloudbook2.jpg


And here I am posting pictures of the Asus eee laptop running Ubuntu

http://www.zdnet.co.uk//i/z5/rv/2007/10/asus_eee_400x400.jpg

http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2365/2098845280_4cc8ba3fc4.jpg?v=0

Article: Eee PC's Sales Success Prompts Competition
http://www.pcworld.com/businesscenter/article/140505/eee_pcs_sales_success_prompts_competition.html

Lostincyberspace
December 18th, 2007, 09:18 AM
The Eee Pc's are to small if You can get a usb driver with a larger hard drive then you need to get a bigger one. imho

BuffaloX
December 18th, 2007, 09:23 AM
The Everex green PC is a completely new market segment, where Windows and OS-X don't stand a chance of competing.
The only Windows or OSX alternative to get a sparkling new Linux PC at 200$, is to buy one second hand, that will use more power, and still be the less economic choice.

From this perspective, Linux completely owns this new low end segment already, Windows or OS-X alternatives are simply not available in this price range.

Strong sales of the Everex gPC and the Asus EeePC combined with positive consumer reactions, very good reviews from both the press and users, strongly indicate that there is indeed a solid market potential.

The only question is how big this market really is, and If it will have an impact on the total market.

But consider this:
Microsoft offers Windows XP for the EeePC at only 30$.
Which indicate that Microsoft sees this as a possible threat.
The Everex and Asus customizations of Linux, have shown the way for other companies to do the same.

X40nick
December 18th, 2007, 11:36 AM
I think it will take over the home PC market, the $300 gPC is more than enough for the average user.

SonicSteve
December 20th, 2007, 02:55 PM
The Everex green PC is a completely new market segment, where Windows and OS-X don't stand a chance of competing.
The only Windows or OSX alternative to get a sparkling new Linux PC at 200$, is to buy one second hand, that will use more power, and still be the less economic choice.

From this perspective, Linux completely owns this new low end segment already, Windows or OS-X alternatives are simply not available in this price range.

Strong sales of the Everex gPC and the Asus EeePC combined with positive consumer reactions, very good reviews from both the press and users, strongly indicate that there is indeed a solid market potential.

The only question is how big this market really is, and If it will have an impact on the total market.

But consider this:
Microsoft offers Windows XP for the EeePC at only 30$.
Which indicate that Microsoft sees this as a possible threat.
The Everex and Asus customizations of Linux, have shown the way for other companies to do the same.

The truth is that Microsoft can offer windows for any amount and it will never perform as well as Ubuntu or most Linux versions. Even XP is too power hungry. When SP3 comes out it will require even more power and memory.
The downside of this is that people may not care given the choice even though most people can run Linux and do everything they need to do.

As for the price I'm not sure what MS charges vendors for Windows but consider this. I recently had to buy 150 OEM copies of XP Home. The going retail cost is roughly between $115-125. I got them from the vendor for $85 and you know he wasn't taking a loss. MS has so much money they could offer it for $5 if they wanted to. The only thing we can hope is that $30 will be enough deterrent for people to give the standard Linux option a try.

JAPrufrock
December 20th, 2007, 03:07 PM
You're absolutely correct; there's a ever-widening niche in the low-end PC market for Linux ditros. MS is tied in to newer, bloated releases that can drive their revenues up, and to some degree Apple is also. A lot of users do not need or want top-of-the-line computers that support resource hungry software. They just want to be able to write a message once in a while, maybe print an occasional draft/letter, and do the whole email/internet thing. Why spend $700 or more on a computer when you can buy one that does all of the above for $200 - $300? And here's the beauty of the whole thing- once Linux (probably a few select distros) starts increasing market share, software vendors will start developing products for Linux, and drivers will also be developed for printers and the like, and the Linux revolution will grab hold. World domination by 2010!

adamorjames
December 20th, 2007, 09:58 PM
I chose yes. It is definitely possible and I'd like to see it happen. :)

Pethegreat
December 21st, 2007, 01:00 AM
I have a PC that is overkill for what I am doing right now. I play some music, browse the internet, and store about 1500 pictures. I only use 350mb of 2000mb of ram. The only time I use my processor fully is when I rip a CD into FLAC. I hope to play games on this thing at some point. If I don't use it for that, $400 for a system that will run well for the next 5 or 6 years is great.

My family has a 5 year old system that is excellent for internet browsing, typing thing, and playing older games. For them that is all they need.

Mateo
December 21st, 2007, 01:21 AM
I'm just worried that gPC's atrocious OS might turn some people off to linux instead of bringing them in.

waltclay
December 31st, 2007, 10:35 PM
I have gOS on gPC and am looking for another OS.
fedora Live cd failed on boot x protocol, current fedora not up do date. I have sent email to fedora.
Recent review of fedora is not encouraging.
http://www.linuxtoday.com/news_story.php3?ltsn=2007-11-09-020-26-RV-RH

Mateo
December 31st, 2007, 10:40 PM
gOS isn't very good, so i understand your desire to get something better. Fedora 8 has gotten overwhelming positive reviews. You might try it out. Otherwise, get Ubuntu. Both are good choices, you really can't go wrong with either.

lancest
January 1st, 2008, 02:13 AM
I dual boot Fedora and Ubuntu now notebook and desktops. Ubuntu has more desktop polish and slightly easier package mngmnt. Fedora is a general purpose distribution, and once you get past it's quirks you will probably like it. Documentation for Fedora is excellent and tools are pro. The infinity theme is my fav.

starbase1
January 2nd, 2008, 05:08 PM
I think the game is about to change, led by the eee.

Businesses are by their nature conservative, and will be the last to move away - (the megabank I worked for just finished migrating from NT to XP this year!)

But in the consumer end, I think things will really change fast. For a very long time the price of laptops has held and the processing power has gone up, and to a lesser extent with desktops too.

But I have an 'eee', and it's not just techies who like it - people who know very little about computers like the size, the look, the feel, and most especialy the price. And when you tell them it comes with all the basic aps they need included, it becomes a no brainer. (And it makes a rather fine media player incidentally!)

I really think that that this machine, and others like it, will do wonders in killing off the idea that Linux is only for anoraks.

Machines at this level are now clearly powerful enough to do the most popular tasks people require without raising a sweat. So I confidently expect prices to get a bit lower, and storage to go up.

The really interesting thing will be microsofts reaction - as was observed at the start of this thread, Vista is unusable on the low end machines, (and even XP is sluggish).

But if MS stick to their plans XP will be withdrawn from sale in the very near future, leaving a choice of Linux or Vista. And only one of those will work anything like acceptably!

Now I have heard that an XP based eee is due any day now. I'm really going to be interested to see the side by side price comparison of an XP eee versus a Linux eee!

Personally I think MS would be mad to abandon the low end, and I would bet a considerable sum that XP's life will be extended in some form. Possibly as a slightly crippled cheaper version for low end boxes, to try and avoid damaging higher end sales.

But make no mistake, the game is changing. Not least because there is now a desirable low end, where the price of the operatining system is a VERY significant part of the cost, and prices matter.

I would also be not be in the least surprised if we started to see things like memory sticks and SD cards with customised OS'es on sale for these kind of machines. Frankly to save the hassle, I'd be very happy to pay a few pounds extra for my next stick or card if it came with an OS optimised for my nice new toy.

Nick

gn2
January 2nd, 2008, 06:16 PM
I really think that that this machine, and others like it, will do wonders in killing off the idea that Linux is only for anoraks.

I agree completely.

Sony should really be pushing the Linux functionality of the PS3 harder and I believe it would increase sales.

Linux is now for wearers of snappy suits and trendy leisurewear!

starbase1
January 2nd, 2008, 07:24 PM
I agree completely.

Sony should really be pushing the Linux functionality of the PS3 harder and I believe it would increase sales.

Linux is now for wearers of snappy suits and trendy leisurewear!

Sony?!?!

I was not aware that the PS3 had Linux functionality - Sony like to lock things down in their walled garden, and after the rootkit scandal, (which I have still not forgiven them for), I am very reluctant to ever put a Sony disk in a machine of mine again...

gn2
January 2nd, 2008, 07:33 PM
Sony?!?!

I was not aware that the PS3 had Linux functionality.

It was designed from the outset to offer the option to run Linux.
There is a menu entry for installing Linux as a dual boot with the Sony Game OS and most major distros work on it.

Ocxic
January 2nd, 2008, 07:54 PM
Linux To Take Over The Low-End PC Market?

yes especially when Microsoft stops supporting 32-bit PC's in an attempt to push the 64-bit model