IBM Teams with Linux Distros, Promises Windows-Free PC by 2009

Lora Bentley

Ever the open source enthusiast, IBM has partnered with three of the biggest Linux distributors, Red Hat, Novell and Canonical, to build what it's calling the "Windows-Free desktop" by next year. Big Blue made the announcement Tuesday at Linuxworld, according to InformationWeek.


The computers will come preloaded with Linux and IBM's Open Collaboration Client, which includes Lotus Notes, Symphony and Sametime, the story says. All three Linux distributors have committed, along with IBM, to providing hardware partners for the project. Local vendors will apply their own brands to the machines, SYS-CON reports, and will provide additional software and applications.


The first Windows-free PC debuted in Eastern Europe earlier this year. VDEL's OpenReferent was widely accepted in Russia, where the Russian Post "dropped Microsoft for as much as 35 percent savings," according to SYS-CON.


Local vendors and developers will also be able to create custom applications for their Windows-free PCs using Lotus Expeditor, an Eclipse-based development framework. But IBM VP Bob Sutor reminded developers at LinuxWorld that they shouldn't try to copy Windows. "That's not where the usability action is," he said.

Subscribe to our Newsletters

Sign up now and get the best business technology insights direct to your inbox.


Add Comment      Leave a comment on this blog post
Aug 14, 2008 2:47 PM George Craciun George Craciun  says:
Yes!!!!! Reply
Aug 14, 2008 3:08 PM George Craciun George Craciun  says:
After using MS for 2 decades, I feel that my PC is not my PC. I really hope I made a mistake choosing MS Win95.I hope you win, 'Non-Win'Good luck! Reply
Oct 19, 2008 8:32 AM Workpost Workpost  says:
Somebody please do the following:Make installing programs on Linux as easy as it is on Mac OSX. The way Linux installs programs is often "better" but the Mac is easier.Adobe, start releasing native versions of your programs for Linux - beginning with Photoshop.When these two things happen, Linux will have a real chance at taking significant market-share away from Windows. Until then, it's a Windows world. Reply
Oct 19, 2008 2:11 PM Ajay Ajay  says:
IBM is no longer the giant it was in 1984, but IBM push will surely be of help. Reply
Oct 19, 2008 3:02 PM Frederik Frederik  says:
Actually, IBM is still quite large. Maybe not to mom-and-pop computer users or even to the average windows user, but they are still one of the largest players in the industry. Depending on what area, they are even the largest.This is perhaps one of the best things to happen in computer history -- not because people can now get "Windows free" computers, but because of the amount of advertisement (I expect) will accompany this. Reply
Oct 19, 2008 3:41 PM ethana2 ethana2  says:
I aliased 'install' to sudo apt-get install(among many, many other things)install inkscape..doesn't get easier than that. What they need to do is ship good aliases. Reply
Oct 19, 2008 7:01 PM josh josh  says:
You can have a windows free computer today. Download and burn a Linux Mint live CD to try it out. Reply
Oct 20, 2008 8:31 AM Troy Troy  says:
Linux strikes MicrosoftFOR MASSIVE SAVINGS Reply
Oct 20, 2008 11:59 AM soulsabr soulsabr  says:
Two words for anybody who thinks leaving M$ is hard. Ubuntu Linux. Nuf said! Reply
Oct 20, 2008 5:19 PM Bill M Bill M  says:
Bah, Dell and HP have been Windows free for years and it still has not taken off. Novell is history and Lotus Smart Suite is not as good as MS Office or Open Office (both of which are cheaper).That has always been the issue with Linux, ease of software installation and the limit of hardware support. While I use my computer mostly graphic design, I also like to run up a game of Crysis, and Linux cannot support that. Its all about ease of use, thats why Apple is eating into MS' market, OS X is easier to use than Vista and is better looking. That is what makes or breaks an OS these days.For business though, and this is where IBM is aiming (or should be) we run into the problem that most people are scared to death of a computer to begin with. If you drop Linux in front of them, the first time they see a non aliased command thier heads will explode. Not to mention that people brought up on MS Office are having a hard time adjusting to 2007, much less to Lotus Smart Suite or heaven forbid Open Office.Nice thought, but until Linux goes mainstream and supports more applications and hardware without the need for a Comp Sci degree it will not be marketable. Reply
Oct 22, 2008 1:26 PM Dustin S. Dustin S.  says:
To Bill: A slight inaccuracy...The problem is not with the installation of programs in a general sense, it's with the installation and use of specific programs. Open up Ubuntu's Add/Remove application, check a box, hit apply, you're done. Unfortunately you are limited to the supported applications (which are many, they simply don't include Halo 3 or whatever the latest and greatest is.)Furthermore, it is not a question of Linux supporting your video games, it's the hardware/software vendors not supporting Linux.Now, the result is obviously the same for the end user, I can't use Photoshop CS3 and Autocad on my linux machine. But that's really okay, because only the absolute proffessionals need to. There are plenty of very good tools for beginner to advanced graphics editing available for Linux with easy installation. There are commercial professional applications for CAD that simply aren't Autocad, but are still high end tools, there are free tools in development for CAD, and well, if gaming is that important to you look to ID Software or some of the Open Source options for linux playable. Reply
Nov 19, 2008 10:00 AM Jack Myers Jack Myers  says:

Post a comment





(Maximum characters: 1200). You have 1200 characters left.




Subscribe Daily Edge Newsletters

Sign up now and get the best business technology insights direct to your inbox.

Subscribe Daily Edge Newsletters

Sign up now and get the best business technology insights direct to your inbox.