Skip to comments.3 Good Reasons To Buy an Open-PC (Linux)
Posted on 03/05/2011 4:32:42 AM PST by decimon
For many small business users, all the rational arguments for using open source software like Linux make a great deal of sense: It's free, customizable, compatible, and it's free of vendor lock-in, to name just a few.
When it comes down to the wire at purchase time, however, many fall prey to one or more of the frequently perpetuated myths out there, and vague fears of incompatibility or a lack of support or something else drive them right back into Redmond's waiting arms.
One way to make the notion of a Linux-based computer less worrisome for such users is to buy hardware preloaded with Ubuntu, Canonical's version of the open source operating system. That can go a long way toward ensuring that everything "just works" out of the box, and I've already discussed good ways and places to do this.
As of December, however, another option emerged that's well worth checking out--it's even better, in fact, from the perspective of software freedom. It's called the Open-PC, and it offers "a PC for everyday use built by the Linux community for the Linux community," in the project's own words.
With three models to choose from--two built and sold in Europe and one through ThinkPenguin in the United States--the Open-PC has several key advantages that could make it the right choice for your small business. Here are just a few to consider.
(Excerpt) Read more at news.yahoo.com ...
I find the Atom processor to be less than acceptable for any sort of video. That computer is a piece of crap. For $99 you can get a good refurb 2.8 dual core box.
Seriously... A parallel port, VGA only and PS2 ports? It’s not 2003 anymore.
The fallacy inherent in all these arguments is that in this day and age of computers and devices everywhere all plugged into the same net that it’s necessary to make a choice.
Fact is that we live in a heterogeneous computing environment and that trend is likely to stay in place for a very long time. I’m typing this on a Windows7 laptop, sitting right next to my homebuilt dual-boot Fedora Core/Windows 7 desktop. A few feet away are (currently out of service) XP and Fedora boxes. If I was a smartphone geek (I’m not) I could easily have an Android phone in my pocket but that’s not the case.
All these either/or arguments make as much sense to me as someone having a tool chest in it with only one tool. Hardware is (relatively speaking) cheap! OS’s are either free (linux) or at worst affordable (Mac/Windows). Embrace the clutter, pick the right tool for the job! If I want to run Quicken or Turbotax I’m going to run it native under windows and not mess with WINE or Vbox etc. Why bother? If I want to run photoshop - same thing. If I want a web server it’s going to be apache/linux. Web surfing can really be either. The trick is to build a net/cloud so that it doesn’t matter which device you come in on, your experience will be roughly the same. My employer is already doing this - they now are supporting both Windows and Macs as supported machines and there already has been a cadre of people who have linux on their laptops.
The smartphone/tablet market could be a game changer as people become used to different interfaces.
Go ahead and laugh. I have MSOfficeXP at work and even with the compatibility pack installed, it won't open many files I get that have been made on newer versions of MSOffice. Open Office does not have this issue.
This PC is already outdated. It’s very very expensive, 387 EURO ! It’s very bulky, it’s using a PSU with 180W too much power, and the cost to ship stateside would be prohibitive.
On top of that, using an Atom dual core for a situation like this (thin client) is less energy efficient than using an embedded CPU with integrated GPU. These systems became available 2 weeks ago...
For that price range, get these little suckers for US$200:
GuruPlug Display - DevKit
110mm (L) x 69.5mm (W) x 48.5 mm (H)
Consuming under 5 Watts of power
I’m thinking about buying one as a testbed for a very small Linux home media server.
LOL, happened to me too -- I was (still am) using Xubuntu.
If an ARM processor can handle it. Might be best to wait for some reviews.
I’m a big, big, MS fan, running Win7 on an intel build.
Even I run OO, exclusively. As for the MS formatting, it’s easy enough to fix it so that the MS formatting works well in both OO and MS.
Now that being said, OO, has some very BIG BUGS that have cost me considerable time and money. One of them being the old bug with their restore. Restore won’t retrieve autosaves, as I found out the hard way. That’s since been fixed.
I met someone a few years ago who had replaced all the windows workstations at a small school district with diskless Linux workstations.
Between that and Googleapps they were saving $500 per workstation.
But hey I’m sure they didn’t have any customers.
I finally installed Ubuntu (10.10) on one of my desktop systems and really like it. There are some issues with video and audio (seems cached and doesn't play at the right time) and it doesn't run my favorite software under WINE, so my Windows 7 box is used for things that don't run quite right.
Other than that, Ubuntu works for me on my HP desktop.
I built a server a few years ago and keep loading newer version of Fedora on it, but since Ubuntu worked so well on my desktop I thought I'd try 32 and 64 bit on the server. Neither worked. At first I thought it was a boot timing issue but think the motherboard may not be supported. So Fedora 14 is back on the server and it runs great.
Other than Ubuntu, what linux distros do you suggest for the desktop?
Linux Mint. It’s a derivative of Ubuntu, but I’ve found it to be far more resilient and performs better.
i have had good success in running Open SuSE. Currently i'm on version 11.1, about to upgrade to 11.4 when it is released next week.
As you have more experience with the Windows Desktop, i strongly recommend that you use the KDE environment rather than Gnome. While KDE does use more system resources, it is far more highly configurable than Gnome.
There is an Ubuntu version called KUbuntu.
As for software deficiencies aside from gaming (where Windows is to this day and for the forseeable future the superior system), can you replace those applications with Linux equivalents?
Perhaps give us an example of what software you speak of.
Linux Mint Rocks!
Hmm. I've heard of it but that's all. I'll check it out. Thanks.
Since I wrote that last post, my Windows 7 laptop has crashed twice... Sigh.
I"ve been meaning to try KDE again - I used it years ago under Solaris and liked it, but somebody else mentioned Gnome was superior to KDE so I went with Gnome this time. For the most part I connect to Linux/Unix via putty and never see the graphical interface.
I've never played games on Windows - just doesn't appeal to me. The software I mentioned is Logos Bible software. I have a lot of money tied up with Logos and can't part with it, so I have to keep a Windows box for now just to run Logos. I might try setting up a Windows VM under Ubuntu...
Please understand I'm saying this as a Mac guy, but part of the problem with Windows is frequently crappy hardware. XP and 7 are pretty good operating systems.
No guys, wooly's right.
Burlington Coat Factory has been using Linux desktops for a decade now and they haven't had any customers. This piddly little start-up called Amazon.com is using Linux "in nearly every corner of its business" The result? No customers. Dreamworks Animation uses 1,000 Linux desktops (as of 2007) and used Linux for animation and visual effects in Shrek 3. I don't think anyone saw it, much less even knows who Dreamworks is... Google uses Linux on desktops in its corporate environments. I don't think they've made a nickel's profit...
FWIW, the laptop is a Toshiba and my last Toshiba laptop from 2001 is still running although I've replaced the drive one.
My desktop is the HP (running Ubuntu), my other desktop is a Compaq (64 bit Vista) and the other is an HP (32 bit Vista)... all of which means HP anyway. I've only had hardware problems with the new Toshiba.
My server running Fedora was something I built from Newegg which has had no problems at all, it was just expensive to build because I can't buy in bulk.
It's interesting how everything works or doesn't work out for all of us.
There's a company headquartered at 1600 Amphitheater Parkway which has over a million computers, spread across a couple of dozen data centers around the world, all running Linux. They have lots of customers and one hell of a lot of users. Last year they netted about $8.5b.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.