updated 10:20 am EDT, Tue May 22, 2007
Dell Ubuntu Details
Those interested in buying Dell's forthcoming Ubuntu Linux PCs for the mainstream will have a very specific level of hardware and software support, according to new updates from the company. An entry in the company's feedback blog reveals that hardware will be a portion of the company's normal Windows offerings to ensure that Linux runs smoothly, the company says. Controversially, however, some of the drivers will be proprietary closed-source drivers when open-source drivers aren't available, limiting the choices available to those who insist on complete access to their software's code. Developers from Dell will work with part makers to improve the quality of Linux drivers to put the options for Dell Linux systems on a closer level to their Windows equivalents, the PC builder adds.
The Texas-based firm also delivered mixed promises for its software. While every Linux notebook and desktop will ship only with a stock distribution of Ubuntu 7, eliminating the trial software that often affects Windows systems, the company won't provide support for video formats not already included with the open-source OS -- including relatively basic features such as DVD movies and most MPEG video standards, the company warns.
Release info for the final PCs remains unlisted, but should follow shortly as today's details are an important last notice before the formal introduction of the finished product, which sources have indicated could arrive as early as Thursday.