Boycott Dell, HP, Gateway

Story: Following Bill Gates' Linux Attack MoneyTotal Replies: 57
Author Content
cyber_rigger

Jun 29, 2005
5:50 PM EST
If you want to stop Microsoft then boycott the companies that maintain Microsoft's desktop monopoly.

I suggest boycotting companies that do not offer CONSUMERS an non-Microsoft alternative.

I don't care if they sell a gazillion Linux servers Microsoft is not a monopoly there. Don't do business with them.
helios

Jun 30, 2005
3:14 AM EST
Ok, I'm in. So assuming you are following your own advice, thats..let's see...two, ok, two of us so far.

I like the way you think and I agree with you, but do you think that the average MS user is gonna give a crap? I personally like Dell computers, that is unless I build my own...and I usually do. I realize you did not post your comment toward MS users. Talk about peeing in the wind. Until Soccer Mom or Day Trader Dad gets wind and starts using Linux...we are destined to remain a niche market.

The winds of change are blowin' however.

helios
cyber_rigger

Jun 30, 2005
5:04 AM EST
Another thing is that when a friend comes to me with a screwed up MS Windows machine I REFUSE to fix Windows.

I politely tell them that I will install Linux for them instead.

I've had several takers.

These people LIKE Linux. They like not having to have anti-virus software. They LIKE the thousands of free software packages.
PaulFerris

Jun 30, 2005
5:29 AM EST
cyber: in concurance. I do have an exception -- one neighbor who I've helped firewall off his PC and switch to mozilla. They're future candidates, but as of the moment, all Windows fixing in general goes through their son who's good enough to get through most problems -- the main issues come from a mail-merge setup with word and excel that I could easily replace with ooo. That's next.

I've converted a neighbor, my dad and my brother, so far. More of that mentality here:

Quoting: These people have been harmed and do not know it. The fact that they need my expertise to help them continue sickens me. I hate to say it, but I can no longer help them. I will invest my time in my local Linux user group. In that group there are people that wish to learn and are doing what they can to get out of the cycle they are in.

Why should I waste another hour, no, rather, I will not waste another hour of my life crawling through dialog boxes and obfuscated error messages with a black box on what is supposed to be an "Open" operating system.


That's from an article I wrote dated almost exactly 5 years ago: http://linuxplanet.com/linuxplanet/opinions/1995/1/

It's a balance, but basically, I view every time I've "freely" fixed a problem on a Windows PC that's directly due to unstable, insecure and proprietary design, I've gone against the direction that will help us all. --FeriCyde
tadelste

Jun 30, 2005
5:29 AM EST
You guys have an very interesting take. I thought about ending the article with a statement like this: "And that's why Linux Desktops aren't as good as XP."

But, I decided against it because it was a huge left turn.

Even if you boycott HP, IBM, Dell and Gateway - they only account for something like 32% of the desktop OS market. I have the exact numbers. The real culprits are the white box manufacturers. They have over 50% of the market. They get lots of marketing dollars in the mail.

That's what has kept many of them alive in this PC economy. I have a friend in the White Box community. He has to sell 4 times the number of computers to make his previous year's sales total. That's what the cost of commoditization has done for him.

alc

Jun 30, 2005
10:56 AM EST
It would be interesting to know how many linux user's build their own.The reason I say this,is because people who are using linux seem to be more the curious type.(Maybe the reason they tried linux in the first place?)Being the curious type myself,it seemed only natural to build my own and eventually try linux.So telling linux user's to boycott Dell,Hp etc. might not have that much effect on these companies. But,introducing people to linux and somehow helping the linux community move forward might have a more positive outcome.That would hopefully be seeing linux as an offering from these companies.
techieMoe

Jun 30, 2005
11:05 AM EST
I can't speak for all Linux users, but I myself build my own.. so yeah, I've been inadvertently boycotting Dell, HP and Gateway for years. Haha.
tadelste

Jun 30, 2005
11:18 AM EST
Well, I'll admit it - I build my own. I do have a Gatewat 550 from 1999 that was a gift. But, I learned to build them back when we were converting AT's to 386 SX's. And, I am a PC-holic. I've tried to stop, but I can't. I look for motherboard and boxed CPU deals continuously. So, it's hopeless. And, I don't make my LUG meetings as often as I need to. Chris - you could support me.
tuxchick

Jun 30, 2005
11:34 AM EST
I build my own because it is fun, and I am fussy about what goes inside. I don't like the weirdo little power supplies that Gateway uses- you can't replace them with off-the-shelf power supplies. Dell changed the pinouts on the motherboard power connector to force users to buy Dell replacement power supplies. Talk about predatory, obnoxious, and dangerous to users who don't know this.

Then there's the business of tying the OS to the machine- these suckers ship with 'customized' winduhs restore disks that cannot be installed on a different machine. I remember an early edition of an IBM PC restore disk that contained a full windoze version that could be installed on any machine.

cyber_rigger is right, and I have preached endlessly on this too- the real key to breaking the microshaft stranglehold is breaking hardware vendors free. Which of course is much too obvious for the DOJ, who never really wanted to do anything substantive anyway. But as hardware vendors willingly donned their microshaft shackles, I don't know what it will take to get them to wise up.

alc

Jun 30, 2005
11:46 AM EST
[But as hardware vendors willingly donned their microshaft shackles, I don't know what it will take to get them to wise up. ]

Maybe when China starts selling $149 PC's preloaded with some linux distro.
tadelste

Jun 30, 2005
11:52 AM EST
They already do. Visit your local Fry's and get your Sempron 2200 for $99 with 52X CD Rom, 128 DDR, 40GB HD and Linspire 4.5.

Oh, and limit 1 per customer, no rain checks.
tuxtom

Jun 30, 2005
12:14 PM EST
I got one from Fry's with an Athalon for $179 a few months back with the same configuration. It even came with keyboard, mouse, powered speakers, motherboard manual/CD (Elitegroup 741GX-M) and the Linspire 4.5 CD. The case and devices were all cool-looking black too!

I pitched in another $30 for another 256 of DDR, so $209 (plus Awnold) out-the-door with sane RAM. A no-brainer purchase for a spare box to play with.

I remember driving home almost crying that I could buy a retail PC this cheap...with LINUX on it!!! Boxed, with full documentation and media.

Of course, I promptly reformatted and used several different distros on it. I bought it for an extra development server, but it currently runs MEPIS (which I highly recommend for a desktop).

Screw the name brands...
sbergman27

Jun 30, 2005
12:49 PM EST
Tuxtom,

You say that now. But if something goes wrong, who are you going to call? Don't you want a support phone number to call so that you can deal with a voice operated expert system which will then (after it is unable to resolve your problem) connect you with a mindless idiot who will explain how to reinstall your operating system from the CD in the packet that came with your computer? I swear. The users are getting out of control, here.
PaulFerris

Jun 30, 2005
1:41 PM EST
I have built all of my past computers. It cost me more for the components, but always got a lot of life out of them and was satisfied that the system I had at the time was solid (better than a lof of systems that were package deals of cheap stuff tuned for Windows-specific "stable" drivers, like Winmodems, for instance).

Things have changed a bit -- you can now buy non-Windows loaded PCs. They haven't changed in other ways -- people are still mostly hooked on Microsoft crack.

Great article Tom.
tuxtom

Jun 30, 2005
10:27 PM EST
sbergman27:

True, it didn't come with a phone number to navigate an inane automated voice expert system with a moron at the end of the debacle, but the user manual was very comprehensive and referred you to support.linspire.com and http://www.fryssupport.net. It even came with one of those fold-out graphical "quick reference" sheets.

Trying to figure how to open the built-in cupholder thingy was confusing the hell out of me. I don't know what I would have done without that colorful quick reference sheet...

I usually build my own (and customers'), too. But I'm getting lazy these days, especially for that price. Ain't it sweet how cheap commodity hardware is getting??? I remember the days of paying nearly 2K for a low-end 486...and $200 for 16 megs of RAM.
hkwint

Jul 01, 2005
3:16 AM EST
Wow, you guys are fanatics! Building your own PC's!

Being one of the more lazy Linux users maybe (though I use Gentoo, but I'm to lazy to convert it to some more user-friendly distro), I chose to let someone else build my PC, with the specs I requested. (However, it is a bit altered by myself at the moment)

Serious, it is indeed interesting. You can't build your own PC for the money some of them are in stores, indeed. Separate hardware parts (harddisks, CPU's, etc) are too expensive, it seems, compared to pre-built PC's. Maybe it's because you should ask your seperate-part hw-supplier for a discount when buying more than one part. Because, this supplier might only sell one harddisk, and then he has to make profit. However, if he sells parts for a whole PC, there's less administration per part, so he should give some discount, because that's what happens with pre-builts, I think. Sometimes it's (almost) cheaper to buy a prebuilt and rip the usable components out of it, to use them in you're self-made PC, or simply sell them for a higher price.
dave

Jul 01, 2005
6:45 AM EST
Quoting:Wow, you guys are fanatics! Building your own PC's!


It's the only way to go. I've never bought a pre-built machine. How else are you going to get exactly what you want?
PaulFerris

Jul 01, 2005
7:16 AM EST
dave: there's an easier way though -- whenever new PC products ship that sound really cool, you could post the press release on the front wire, with comments like "Wow, that looks neat! I sure wish *cough* I could get a free test sample."

Good thing this is never practiced in the industry, eh?

--FeriCyde
tuxchick

Jul 01, 2005
7:59 AM EST
Paulie, that's why Real Tech Journalists don't do Linux. There just isn't enough swag to make it worthwhile.
PaulFerris

Jul 01, 2005
8:43 AM EST
tuxxy: I wouln't bank on it. Yours truly was offered a free trip to Redmond to drink the coolaid -- and I know some others that (although publicly didn't say they did) did. There's swag -- just not a lot of Linux swag...

:-)

cjcox

Jul 01, 2005
9:19 AM EST
Tom, et. al.

Too much to say... I started writing, but didn't want to post a 20 page response :)

So... I've decided not to say anything for the moment (and there was much rejoicing).

Linux rocks. Windows doesn't... but Microsoft IS a monopoly.

It's as simple as that.
hkwint

Jul 01, 2005
12:52 PM EST
Quoting: It's the only way to go. I've never bought a pre-built machine. How else are you going to get exactly what you want?
I meant, you have those shops were you can select the hardware-components you want from a long list, for example a university-webshop like http://www.utwente.nl/itshop/prijslijsten/prijslijstcomponen... and then you select the parts you request and pay E50 extra to let some poor student who works for that shop collect the parts and put the parts together instead of doing it yourself (rather expensive, but you get a guarentee). I did so because I hadn't the expertise to build a PC from scratch, but I always read stuff about hardware, so I knew what I wanted. This works good for people not willing to fiddle with the compontents, jumpers and BIOS-updates, but do know what parts they want. That is a rather big group of people in my opinion; they know how many RAM and what CPU they want, what kind of DVD-drive and how big the harddisk should be, but they don't care if it's HP or Dell, it just has to be cheap. Here in the Netherlands, many people are earning their bread by building PC's from scratch for 'other people', according to the component-requests of those 'other people'. And good thing is, because those people want a cheap pc and don't care for the rest, they don't want to pay for Windows, since it actually appears on the pricelist (those people end up paying $7 for windows, if you know what I mean). This also shows less people would buy (legal) windows if they knew the price of it, and had a choice.
cyber_rigger

Jul 01, 2005
7:26 PM EST
cjcox,

but Microsoft IS a monopoly.

I view it as a MS Windows desktop oligopoly made up of Microsoft and the major computer OEMs.

You can choose to support this oligopoly or not.
tadelste

Jul 02, 2005
4:37 AM EST
cyber_rigger:

You can view it any way you desire, but it's not an oligolpoly. The classical definition says:

An oligopoly exists when a few companies dominate an industry. This concentration often leads to collusion among manufacturers, so that prices are set by agreement rather than by the operation of the supply and demand mechanism. For an oligopoly to exist, the few companies do not need to control all the production or sale of a particular commodity or service. They only need to control a significant share of the total production or sales. As in a monopoly, an oligopoly can persist only if there are significant barriers to entry to new competitors.

In terms of hardware - you're correct. But when you own 95% of the desktops and the applications that go on the desktop, then you're a monopoly.

If HP, Dell, Gateway, etc. had their own operating systems, then your definition would work. But, this isn't oil or agriculture or even potato chips. Oligopolies deal will fungible commodities not software that costs about $.13 per unit to produce and sells for hundreds of dollars.

It's two pieces of softare: Windows XP and Office.
cyber_rigger

Jul 02, 2005
5:30 AM EST
In terms of hardware - you're correct. But when you own 95% of the desktops and the applications that go on the desktop, then you're a monopoly.

Microsoft co-opts in the advertising of the hardware.

"BlahBlahBlah recommends Microsoft® Windows® XP...", etc.

Microsoft still has exclusionary licenses with these computer OEMs to prevent selling bare machines to CONSUMERS .

http://www.theregister.com/2004/01/20/microsoft_gets_green_l...

The major OEMs are still part of the "sell MS Windows club" to gain financial advantages from Microsoft. They are also excluding entry of competition in their consumer desktop space.

That's fine. I just refuse to do business with these OEMs.

I suggest boycotting these OEMs until they do offer a choice to CONSUMERS.

tadelste

Jul 02, 2005
8:13 PM EST
I understand your sentiments entirely. I share them.

I have another point of view we might consider. Instead of boycotting them, write them and ask them to offer Linux on the desktop.

Dell does it. HP will do it. Gateway - maybe. IBM will do it.

Just be prepared to buy from them.

In fact, no exclusionary deals exist with Microsoft. The way Microsoft does it is by offering huge discounts in the way of marketing rebates.

The other way to succeed in the ultimate goal: Write you local newspaper editors and ask them to look into the links to Microsoft & Tom Delay.

I believe we all want justice - so ask the media to help.

Thanks what I'm doing.



cyber_rigger

Jul 02, 2005
10:29 PM EST
Dell does it. HP will do it. Gateway - maybe. IBM will do it.

Just be prepared to buy from them.


Do you have a link for a non-Microsoft CONSUMER machine? (not a server or a high end workstation)

I think IBM just got out of the PC business by selling it to Lenovo.
tadelste

Jul 03, 2005
8:11 PM EST


http://www1.us.dell.com/content/products/features.aspx/precn...







cyber_rigger

Jul 03, 2005
8:49 PM EST
http://www1.us.dell.com/content/products/features.aspx/precn...

Would you call this a CONSUMER machine? The only OS choices are Red Hat "Enterprise" Linux and FreeDos.

Here are some machines more in the CONSUMER ballpark.

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product_listing.gsp?cat=23179... [url=http://www.walmart.com/search/browse-ng.do?ref=125875.126125 500500.4293898611&path=0:3944:3951:41937]http://www.walmart.com/search/browse-ng.do?ref=125875.126125...[/url] http://www.linare.com/

http://shop1.outpost.com/product/4199563?site=sr:SEARCH:MAIN... http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.gsp?product_id=359503... http://www.linspire.com/featured_partner/featured_partner.ph...

sbergman27

Jul 04, 2005
5:59 AM EST
cyber_rigger,

Those $199.98 Wal-Mart boxes make very nice little X thin clients for business use, as well. I have a custom kickstart CD set for Fedora that I install on them. Pop the CD in, and 10-15 minutes later you have a gdm login screen from the server... for $199 + monitor. It just doesn't get any better than that. Considering the price, I have found them to be pretty reliable. I had one where the hard drive failed a couple of months after purchase. I have another on which the processor fan got gummed up. I hit it with some WD40 and it was fine. (OK. For $199 you don't get a Sunfire. :-) The keyboards are variable. They can be a bit cheapish, but recent models seem to come with acceptable keyboards. They do come with a 3 button wheel mouse, however. For the money, you really can't go wrong buying one of these units. They are also available through Amazon. Linair I do not have any direct experiece with, though I did run into a rather negative laptop review at osnews.com, the gist of the complaint being that it took weeks and weeks to arrive, IIRC.
cyber_rigger

Jul 04, 2005
7:49 AM EST
They are also available through Amazon. Linair I do not have any direct experiece with, though I did run into a rather negative laptop review at osnews.com, the gist of the complaint being that it took weeks and weeks to arrive, IIRC.

It was probably backordered.

I know that when Walmart first came out with their Linux machines there was a lot of backorders.

This tells me that there IS a market here,

BUT Dell, HP, Gateway, etc. seem to offer ONLY Microsoft here. Dell, HP, Gateway, etc. seem to want to protect Microsoft's monopoly here.

Fine.

I will shop elsewhere.

I suggest that others do the same.

People need to realize that Microsoft's "monopoly" is being perpetuated by the major OEMs.
Abe

Jul 05, 2005
6:47 AM EST
tadelste: For some reason, I see some bias here towards Dell. Dell is the worst when it comes to Linux offerings and support. Two years ago, a friend of mine and I bought couple HP D530 desktops of their web site. They were $520 each (no monitor) and each of us saved $125 just by dropping Windows and replacing it with Mandrake 9.0. Things even gotten better from HP, today, if you look on their site, you will find a slew of desktops that come with Linux (Mandrake/Suse). Do your own configuration to compare (The site allows to do that), you will find that the Linux based ones will cost you $120-$130 less. Yes I know, HP "recommends MS Windows OS", but at least you can make your own configurations with Linux and for the same hardware that is offered with Windows. Can you get that from Dell??? I don't see it any where on Dell's site.

Plain and simple, what Dell is offering is a sham, sleazy, devious marketing. I thought to let you know because, from your writings, I know you are a major advocate of FOSS, but in this case, you are not helping FOSS at all. See for yourself at the following links:

http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF02d/12454-64287-89... http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF04a/12454-64287-89...
cjcox

Jul 05, 2005
6:56 AM EST
Dell+Sun+Microsoft.. you'll just have to trust me on this one.

Dell is about to get caught with its pants down because of their lack of support for Opteron.... but unlike Compaq before them (who also faced similar challenges), they'll actually attempt to make things right rather than standing tall on the bow of their sinking ship. I really feel a relationship between Dell and Sun is forthcoming... if not, I'd start bailing out of the Dell boat now.



dinotrac

Jul 05, 2005
7:39 AM EST
cjcox -

OOC --

Why does a relationship with Sun, whose business has depended on premium-priced hardware, make sense for Dell, whose business has relied on efficient manufacturing and distribution to be profitable on relatively thin margins and inexpensive equipment?

A relationship with AMD - now THAT would make sense. Not only is AMD making some dandy processors, but it would really put the heat on Intel.
cyber_rigger

Jul 05, 2005
8:07 AM EST
Abe,

OK, take the 2000 series, starting a $333. (even though this is a "business" machine)

http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF02d/12454-64287-89...

Go here. It's still shows to be $333 http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF05a/12454-64287-89...

Click "Configure and Buy"

----POOF!----- http://h71016.www7.hp.com/dstore/ctoBases.asp?ProductLineId=...

Where did the $333 Linux machine go?

I see a $349 Windows machine though.

It seems to me that HP just wants to do the "bait and switch".

HP's website is INTENTIONALLY misleading

Abe

Jul 05, 2005
9:51 AM EST
cyber_rigger:

Thanks for pointing that out, but I never said HP was perfect. All vendors use this old trick of advertising with the lowest price as a bait with very stripped down configuration. I haven't seen vendor who does not. My point is that, relatively speaking, HP has much better offering and support for Linux than Dell. Dell, when asked, they claim they are the biggest Linux supporters. Tom's link shows how successful they are in brainwashing people. Obviously they even succeeded in convincing some smart people. I just wanted to point that out.

If you notice, the item you point out does not have OS listed. I think you pre-determined it is Windows. I thought that it would be Linux or FreeDOS. On that same page, the last item on the right is listed as $522. with Linux, compare that to the first item which is listed for $654. Their hardware configurations are slightly different but the price difference of $132. is a lot more than just for the hardware difference. CD for $19.00. 5400 rpm vs. 7200 rpm for $15. and the rest of ~$100 is for XP Home Edition and memory type. I think this is a far better honest pricing than Dell's. Please go check Dell's because it would really annoy the heck out of me if I did.
cyber_rigger

Jul 05, 2005
10:38 AM EST
Please go check Dell's because it would really annoy the heck out of me if I did.

The Dell offering comes with Red Hat "Enterprise" Linux. I find that a bit of an overkill for a consumer version.

The other offering, FreeDos, is an underkill.

Dell will sell you anything Linux as long as it is not for the CONSUMER.

Dell is protecting Microsoft's precious turf.
alc

Jul 05, 2005
11:17 AM EST
[ A relationship with AMD - now THAT would make sense. Not only is AMD making some dandy processors, but it would really put the heat on Intel.]

I'm not so sure that AMD could fill that big of an order. A read @ http://overclockers.com/tips00800/ If they could it would certainly be interesting.
tadelste

Jul 05, 2005
2:42 PM EST
While visions of sugarplums danced in their heads ...

Abe

Jul 06, 2005
6:25 AM EST
Wow, that must be pretty good stuff, please share it!
PaulFerris

Jul 06, 2005
6:27 AM EST
Abe: it's illegal to share mushrooms on a message board. Besides the graphics and javascript tend to crash most browsers...
cyber_rigger

Jul 08, 2005
8:50 AM EST
Here are some companies that DO offer consumers a choice.

Systemax http://www.systemax.com/divisions.htm

Microtel http://www.microtelpc.com/

LinuxCertified http://www.linuxcertified.com/

Fry's Outpost.com http://shop2.outpost.com/search?search_type=regular&sqxts=1&...

walmart.com (you have to search around a bit) http://www.walmart.com/catalog/catalog.gsp?cat=3951&path=0:3...

Anyone else want to add to the list?

sbergman27

Jul 08, 2005
9:29 AM EST
Yes, it's certainly nice to be able to order in a cheap Linux machine. I'll feel a lot better when one can walk into a brick and mortar and buy a machine running Linux. PC Club announced quite some time ago that they were getting into Linux. But if you go down to the local store there is not a Linux box in sight, and the employees are clueless on the matter. Best Buy? CompUSA? Forget it.

Of course, Linux is supposedly doing better in the embedded market; PDA's and such. Unfortunately, however, in the Oklahoma City Metro area, population 1M, which is where I live, it is impossible to go out and buy a Linux-based PDA. Office Depot used to carry Sharp Zaurus, 2 or 3 years ago. But now it's just Palm and an ever increasing number of MS based devices. And I don't think I have ever, at any time, seen a cell phone here that wasn't a Nokia. For practical purposes, Motorola does not exist.

BTW, we don't have Fry's here. There's one in the Dallas metro area, 200 miles away, if you count Mesquite as being part of the metro area. (I think it's in Mesquite; I've only been there once.) BTW, I'm curious. At Fry's, do they have a "Linux Section"? Or are the Linux PC's just mixed in with the others? Or is there this one lone Linux PC in the showroom? Or is it a special request thing where you have to specifically ask for it, sight unseen, and they call back to the warehouse for it?

As far as I can see, preinstalled retail Linux in a brick and mortar, embedded or non, is as rare as the unicorn.
tuxtom

Jul 08, 2005
6:11 PM EST
sbergman27:

At the Fry's in the San Diego area the Linux machines are mixed in with the other i386 offerings, which are loosely displayed in order by price. Most, if not all, have Linspire (desktop & notebook). There are only a handful of Linux models, but the pricing is phenominal . They do have a seperate Mac section...but that is really a solid niche market with a lot of markup. Fry's has always had a great retail selection of boxed Linux distros and technical literature for good prices. I've been using Linux since '97, when I moved here from WA State, and there has always been plenty of resources for Linux books, etc., in retail stores (not necessarily the big chains, but places Like Fry's or SD Technical Books where you can browse and read beefore you buy).

(BTW: I lived most of my childhood, teenage and young adult years in Tulsa and DFW (Arlington)...headed West permanently in '89 and never looked back.)
hkwint

Jul 11, 2005
12:41 PM EST
This link might be interesting: http://www.tomshardware.com/hardnews/20050512_124421.html

It's about HP offering preinstalled Linux notebooks in a very silent way in EMEA (that's almost everywhere, except USA). Very hard to get though. Only when enough people ask for it, it will go to the shelves.
cyber_rigger

Jul 11, 2005
2:34 PM EST
HP does not open advertise the Ubuntu option, but instead lists FreeDOS

I guess that's from the overwhelming demand from consumers for FreeDOS.

:^)

To me that make HP's position even MORE irritating (I'm in the USA).
Abe

Jul 11, 2005
2:47 PM EST
Below is another interesting link. It is a video/Audio demo clip that shows one of HP's notebooks that come with Linux and available via direct sales. The clip works great in FireFox + RealPlayer.

http://zdnet.com.com/1606-2-5298692.html

Disclaimer: I am not associated with HP or have any of their stocks (I don't believe in stocks period). I only use their products at work and at home. Actually I dislike HP for what they did with the Alpha. They favored and pushed the Itanium which has never delivered on its promises from day one. What a shame.
richo123

Jul 11, 2005
5:44 PM EST
For something a bit more high end try Los Alamos Computers:

http://www.laclinux.com/en/Workstation

I have ordered five systems from them and the parts are great as is the customer service. Plus they are a bunch of Linux geeks who came out of the Los Alamos Labs.
cyber_rigger

Jul 11, 2005
7:41 PM EST
The whole thing is that HP is just pretending to offer a (business) desktop linux.

If HP really did want to offer consumers an alternative you could just go to their website and find it easily, click and buy it, and not have frustrating pages where the Linux option disappears at configuration. and not have pages where the Linux option mysteriously becomes way more expensive.

The last time I called HP and asked them about Linux the person on the phone acted like they had never heard of Linux. It was a "What is this Linux you speak of?", mentality.

I've given up on Dell, HP, and Gateway.

I refuse to buy from them until they show a serious effort to offer CONSUMERS a choice (other than Microsoft).

They seem to not want my business.

Fine, I will NOT buy home computers from them. I will also NOT buy business computers from them either.

In my option companies like these are anti-competitve and anti-consumer choice.
number6x

Jul 12, 2005
5:30 AM EST
I bought my last pre-built computer from pogo linux. I got it loaded with SuSE 9.1 and it works like a charm.

They'll put Windows on for you if you want.

pogo is based in a little town called Redmond, in Washington state. Its supposed to be a pretty nice place.

I usually build my own boxes, but it felt very good to support a linux box builder with my hard earned cash.

The machine is very sweet!
Abe

Jul 13, 2005
2:56 PM EST
cyber_rigger:

All you needed to do is to follow this link and convince yourself. http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF04a/12454-64287-89...

If you want to build your own, just do it. I myself is EE, and good one If I might add, but I don't like building my own. I like tailoring them to my liking. Please don't hide the facts or publicize inaccurate information (being polite here) . I think HP is sincere about supporting Linux. They could have done a better job on their site to allow consumers to select the hardware and the OS they like (Windows, Linux, or Free DOS) in the same configuration tool, but hay, you never know what kind of contract they have with you know who?

I keep stressing my point because I can't stand letting inaccurate info slide.

Here are some links to customize the selection to your liking. Now, I rest my case.

http://h71016.www7.hp.com/dstore/MiddleFrame.asp?page=config... http://h71016.www7.hp.com/dstore/MiddleFrame.asp?page=config... http://h71016.www7.hp.com/dstore/MiddleFrame.asp?page=config...
cyber_rigger

Jul 13, 2005
5:02 PM EST
Column 1 Starting at: $540.00 Mandrake Linux 9.2

http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF04a/12454-64287-89...

How do I buy this Linux machine for $540.00?

HP is just playing a game.
tuxchick

Jul 13, 2005
5:10 PM EST
LOL- I don't see a way to buy ANY of these machines for $540.00. Bait n switch indeed! For $650 you get a 'Compaq dc5000 MicroTower Alternate OS' with no floppy drive, shared video, a dinky 40GB hard drive, CD-ROM instead of CDR...

"HP recommends Microsoft® Windows® XP Professional"

If I want a vendor-built box, I'll go with one of the many Linux specialists.
hkwint

Jul 14, 2005
1:03 AM EST
cyber_rigger: How do I buy this Linux machine for $540.00?

Let me give you a step-by-step guide, cause it can be done! 1) Go to http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/us/en/sm/WF04a/12454-64287-89... 2) In the first column you mentioned, click on 'configure and buy', the red link below, 3) Drink a cup of coffee, since you will have to wait some time, 4) In the second column, click on 'customize' (now this table is really interesting, look at the price differences between Mandrake and Win) 5) scroll down to processor, choose the 2.6 Ghz one, which saves $90, 6) scroll down to 'optical drive', and select "No optical drive", which saves you $19, Now, in the left column, there is a sliding frame that tells you the current config will cost you $541. That's not $540, I agree. So, to get it 540, follow step 7: 7) Choose FreeDos instead of Mandrake. Now it's 540!

So theoratically, it can be done, but it's really a big hassle. If you config the same WinXP (Home) computer as cheap as possible, you will end up paying $620. By the way, it's interesting to see; -If you choose Mandrake, the OS selection is halfway in the customize list, -If you choose Win, the OS selection is FIRST in the list.

So they're not very objective, but again, theoratically, if you really want to, it can be done.

hkwint

Jul 14, 2005
1:05 AM EST
By the way, what do you guys think of this: http://www.questar.it/shop/customer/dellcart.php?mode=add&pr...

A Dell with Linspire! (NO win!) Well, only in Italy, only two choices, no software support from Dell, and it has not much to do with Dell, but it shows people are trying to sell it anyway.
cyber_rigger

Jul 14, 2005
6:40 AM EST
By the way, what do you guys think of this: http://www.questar.it/shop/customer/dellcart.php?mode=add&pr...

I could buy a Dell home Windows machine, install Linux on it and resell it.

Dell would still be anti-consumer-choice, and anti-competitive.

I'm waiting to see something in Dell's "home computer" section.

Dell may not want to offer consumers a choice. That's fine, let them.

I just don't want to do business with them (home use OR business). If you support "consumer choice" I suggest that you DO NOT do business with Dell either.



TxtEdMacs

Jul 29, 2005
4:43 PM EST
How about an ASUS laptop with no software? Appears that without shipping this would come in under a $1K USD. Here is the link: http://www.mwave.com/mwave/skusearch.hmx?SCriteria=NB-BA2153...

My only qualms are given the screen size: potential excess in weight and in heat output. I am less worried about Linux compatibility, but I would like some assurance.

Regarding the heat - this unit is supposedly available with the 25W chip the MT-30, but the only choice I have encountered is the 35W ML-30. The former probably would extend battery life as well as emit less heat.
Bob_Robertson

Dec 30, 2005
3:10 PM EST
Package hardware from a reputable name doesn't guarantee anything.

I have a Sony laptop bought through Circuit City. I am very very glad I bought the extended service plan.

It's been sent back 4 times for failure of the DVD drive, and once just for overheating due to dust in the fan and cooling fins. Ya see, there's no way for a mere owner to clean it.

Oh, and the "manufacturers warantee(sp?) " is void if I install anything over the WinXP that came with it. Har de har har, XP booted, to make sure the hardware worked, then was overwritten with Debian Sid.

However, I consider re-installing Windows to be sort of a final diagnostic test to make sure that it's really a hardware problem. So it's the last thing I do before returning the unit to Circuit City.

In fact, it's about to go back a 5th time, since the DVD drive is screwing up massively again. I'm very glad I kept my old no-name laptop that I bought in 1998 and still works perfectly well. Hmmm, there's a lesson there...

Biggest lesson: No More Laptops. I can't just go buy another DVD writer and slap it in!

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