Ubuntu 8.04, Hardy Heron, is a viable alternative to Windows for system builders willing to try something new, says Channel Insider's Frank Ohlhorst.
Among the Linux distribution's strong points, it comes in both server and desktop versions, and the desktop version also comes in a variety of environments, from GNOME to KDE to XFce. Moreover, the system builder interface is "very slick" and will result in a "straightforward" end-user experience. And, even though Hardy Heron's hardware detection isn't perfect, he says, it provides a pretty close "Windows-style" experience.
Observers have said for some time now that Ubuntu is business-ready, but so far, users are not making the switch. In the end, according to Ohlhorst, application availability will determine the Linux distribution's fate in the business world:
... if the necessary business applications are available under Linux, then the OS becomes that much more viable for business and home users. One thing is certain, Ubuntu gets better with every release. The OS becomes more stable, offers more point and click features, adds more compatible applications and will become that much harder to ignore.