05.17.09

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What is Going on with ASUS and GNU/Linux?

Posted in GNU/Linux, Hardware, Microsoft at 5:30 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: ASUS betrays GNU/Linux after getting “closely tied up with Microsoft”, a new Web site called “It’s better with Windows®” appears

ASUS really blew it when it decided to take Microsoft’s invitation and turned its back on GNU/Linux (profits at ASUS now down 94%). We also have allegations of kickbacks now [1, 2].

Groklaw has found this curious complaint about the way ASUS treats GNU/Linux after it had gotten “closely tied up with Microsoft,” to use its executive's own words.

A friend of mine pointed out the Eee PC Seashell (1008HA) for example, which looks very nice on the website. But hang on, what’s this. I’m now told by your marketing department that “It’s better with Windows®”, and I am invited to find out more by clicking a a link.

Over at Groklaw, Pamela Jones writes: “ the link is to a site calling itself It’s Better With Windows, and if you check out who owns it, it is registered on GoDaddy to a Michael Sharp, in Kent, Washington. This wouldn’t be an Intel-type of deal, by any chance??

Further, the post states:

I also see that Windows is “Compatible”, and that I can be “confident” my devices and applications will work. Ok, lets see. My HP Printer, digital camera, 3G dongle, sound card, mobile phone and wireless stick all refuse to work on a Windows XP machine without navigating some obtuse vendor websites or chugging through a load of vendor supplied CDs. It does have a CD-ROM drive, right?

You make some nice kit, and were instrumental in the rise of the netbook form factor all around the world. I can completely understand you pandering to the masses clawing for Windows XP because they don’t know any better. But don’t insult my intelligence by telling me it’s ‘better’, because it flat out isn’t, and a patronising, condescending pro-Windows website isn’t going to convince me otherwise.

Linux was good enough for you at the launch of your Eee PC models two years ago, and it’s even better now. How quickly you changed your allegiance when the hardware caught up with the requirements of Windows. We now know who our real friends are. Maybe you never really were our friend, maybe you just used us to steal a march on the competition. If that’s the case then you suck.

It does have a tinge of Slog-type attack on the viability of GNU/Linux on sub-notebooks , such as those which are backed by NPD.

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