Linux

Forrester Research predicts Linux desktop growth


Here's something to warm the kernels of your heart. A new Forrester report calls Linux a "credible threat to Windows on the desktop" and predicts continued growth. If you or someone you know already has a Forrester account, you can read the report yourself. Interestingly the report in question is titled, "How Windows Vista Will Shake Up The State Of The Enterprise Operating System." Way to go, Vista!

So, how important do you think this vote of confidence is coming from Forrester? Or is it just another instance of Linux being damned with faint praise ("Yeah, well, Linux isn't going to completely disappear from the enterprise...we think...maybe...")?

About

Selena has been at TechRepublic since 2002. She is currently a Senior Editor with a background in technical writing, editing, and research. She edits Data Center, Linux and Open Source, Apple in the Enterprise, The Enterprise Cloud, Web Designer, and...

5 comments
j-mart
j-mart

The computer in the home is becoming another usefull appliance, it entertains us, provides us with a way of sourcing information, communication with other's, we can use it to do much of our banking, to do some of our shopping keep track of our finances, so home computer's are now being used in the home by many who have no exposure to computing in their places of work. The Wal-Mart machines may be able to give some answers to a few questions that have often been debated. As I see it for the average person who has a requirement for these simple tasks, a low cost reliable system that once up and running and keeps on running well, without the need for constant vigilance to keep secure and running properly, is the best machine for the job. In the home most of us aren't power users, kids and their games being an exception. If the Wal - Mart machines perform reliably from a hardware perspective running Linux as an OS is the perfect choice to provide the requirements of these users

jlwallen
jlwallen

honestly i think the whole Wal Mart selling out of PCs with Linux is the biggest kick in the pants Linux needs. Let's face it - the end user wouldn't really know how bad Vista is if Vista caused the dissolution of their marriage - it's just an operating system (at least to the average user). but now you have super-mega-mecha-giant wal mart selling 200.00 pcs pre-installed with Linux and now the tides are changing. BUT this will require that wal mart restock and continue selling out. and that's truly the key factor. it's not business or corporate support. it's the end user. it's jane doe needing the web and email at home who are going to be the tipping point with the Linux desktop. and once users start seeing the difference ("hey my PC isn't slowing down after a year of use...what's that?") i think it will spread more and more.

yschoo1
yschoo1

Way back from Commodore-64, to Amiga, to Windows, to Vista(not yet), I don't remember buying a single piece of software other than Nero 6 which my sister bought on-line. For most end users the productivity softwares that come with the machine irrespect of the platforms are more than enough. I'm not an IT professonal, however I have ample reason to believe that general end users like me comprise the majority of the users in the market. Just like j-mart said any machine on any platform which can provide reliable service and reasonably cheap shouldn't have any problem securing greater share in the market. Most doesn't even need support. Unlike my Dell's Dimension L800r with Window ME I got in year 2000, all I did was trying to change the resolution and it died right then and there preventing me from getting back in. I did get the best support from Dell's and believe it must have been a big nightmare for them. A few months back I got rid of the sluggish Window ME on the same machine and replaced it with Linux Ubuntu first from 7.04 to now 7.10 and haven't had any problem with it even with the same slow machine only running at 800 Mhz. I must however admit that I do know, thanks to Window ME, more about the in and out of how a computer runs than I first had my Window ME. Linux Ubuntu should really make their platform in the way that it is openbox and running, never mind those legal issues that you need to download codec this and that. It takes a geek to know how to install RealPlayer 10. If the $200 Walmart edition can provide an openbox up and running way of using a modern marvel, I'm sure many would agree with me that Linux will definitely be a threat to MS Windows platform. As for OS-X, well they always have been only catering to discerned fews who are willing to pay more for their excellence. I too have an OS-X machine Apple Mini that my son gave it to me. I love it but I still find it easier to run a Linux Ubuntu than OS-X. In any case, j-mart has spoken the general end users' expectation of what a computer should be.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

This is the second discussion to reference Wally World selling out of Linux boxes. I'm not questioning anybody's word, but I'd appreciate some links to more information on this. I apparently missed the back story on this marketing coup. For example, how many total units and how many stores were involved? 10 units in each store is astonishing. 6 units in 6 stores isn't. 6 units not in brick and mortar but only over the web (the only way I've ever seen Wal-Mart offer Linux systems) isn't worth discussing. I also still wonder how many of those units will come back when those same buyers go back to Wally, buy new Windows software off the rack not knowing any better, and try to load it. You're right about it not being corporate support, but is Wal-Mart going to provide support?

Selena Frye
Selena Frye

It looks like all 10,000 units were sold initially with plans for Everex to restock. I guess we'll have to wait and see how many come back, but supposedly Everex is offering 24-hour phone support via a toll-free number. Wonder how good that support will be -- could make a big difference in how many returns are made. http://blogs.zdnet.com/ip-telephony/?p=2729

Editor's Picks