> [ snip ]
> What ? install NT so you can run linux ? this is starting to blow my
> silly index through the roof ... nothing against your post though, it
> addresses the original poster's question, but illustrates how sucky life
> is when you bend over for an MS-only shop.
> Why not save yourself the hassle and just grab a linux preloaded
> machine ... ?
> Web designer for Independence -- Linux for the Masses
I know it sounds strange to ask for NT when getting a computer for
Linux, but I have dealt with Dell a couple of times (Dell UK that is),
and this was the easiest and most cost-effective way of doing it to a
guaranteed level of hardware support.
I like Dell as a company because I have had good experiences with them,
and I am open-minded / naieve enough to believe that they have "core
competencies" which do not include Linux. Thus, they do not openly (or
any other way, except if you are a corporate customer I believe ...)
support it. Although it would be nice if they did support Linux, I don't
hold it against them that they don't. I like their hardware / support /
service / pricing, not necessarily their "software" policies.
The subject line is "Linux On Dell Dimension XPS R450" which indicates
that the original poster (I forget who now), was specifically wanting
I found that, with Dell at least and probably other companies, that they
will generally only sell pre-spec'ed systems. If you want to build a
custom system, it comes at a (significant) premium. On the other hand,
if you look at their advertising, they offer standard OS's for only a
marginal extra cost which in the case of choosing NT over Win98 gives
you the same basic spec as the advertised machine, but also ensures that
everything is NT compatible (and thus, as a generalisation, Linux
I found that the premium of asking for an NT OS was less than the
premium of upgrading the modem (the computer was specced with an
"internal modem", and arrived with a USR Sporster flash external ...!).
Even paying this premium, the result was a hardware platform I am more
than happy with, and service I am happy with, and an operating system I
am happy with (Linux), and a copy of NT (workstation) which is now on
another machine. I felt a "winner" in the whole deal.
Why don't I buy pre-configure Linux machine?
Firstly, I considder the hardware and OS to be independant to a large
degree, so the question should be stated "Why can't I buy a computer
*without* an operating system?" You have to buy the OS even if you have
an OS already, like Linux / windows / OS/2 whatever.
Second, pre-loaded Linux (at least in the UK) is a "specialist" and not
a "consumer" product. This attracts a "specialist" premium on the
Third, Why pay someone to install a free operating system when it is
beneficial / easy / educational / free to install it yourself?
Fourth, I am a brand name buyer. I buy Sony electrical / audio-visual
products where there is a choice, I buy IBM HDD's, I buy Colgate
toothpaste and toothbrushes. I have a brand I am happy with, and I use
them with a sense of loyalty. In the long run, I believe I have been
rewarded for this. This is the way I work. Dell has worked for me,
generally, and I know Dell, so I buy Dell.
Fifth, *most* people in the Linux community at home are not looking for
technical support fot Linux, they want to actually solve the problems
for themselves, and learn from it. In the case where Linux is installed
as a critical server in a business or other place, then I would
recommend a pre-configured, pre-installed, and professionally maintained
system with more critical / timeous / professional support than the
average (even *guru*) home user could provide.
Sorry about the long reply... suddenly felt that my recommendation
needed defending ... ;-)