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Do-No-Evil Saturday - Part II: SLED at Lenovo and Wyse, SLES, Xandros

ThinkPad laptop
Lenovo Thinkpad


FOR STARTERS, Novell secured itself a place on Lenovo IdeaPads, as was initially announced several weeks ago. There are numerous articles about the early appearance of this unit, e.g.:

1. Lenovo IdeaPad S10e netbook launches

Choices of operating systems include Microsoft Windows XP Home, XP Pro or Novell SLED 10 Linux.

2. Lenovo launches IdeaPad S10e, the Splashtop-equipped netbook

Remember Lenovo's IdeaPad S10 netbook? No? Well, we'd almost forgotten about it too. The by-the-book netbook was announced back in August but failed to garner any widespread attention.


Splashtop, as you're no doubt aware, is an instant-on interface that boots in a matter of seconds to provide quick access to common features such as a web browser, music player and e-mail client. It's all accessed by a simple graphical interface and the software itself comes embedded on the netbook - though, Windows XP or Novell Linux can also be pre-installed as part of a dual-boot configuration.

3. IdeaPad S10e brings 'Instant On' and an ExpressCard slot for greater expansion potential.

A new feature is Instant On, enabling quick checking of email and web browsing without having to fully boot the operating system. The OS choice is between Novell SLED 10 Linux and the more conventional Windows XP operating system.

4. Lenovo S10e Ideapad Netbook with XP Pro Unveiled

Lenovo announced the launch of its latest S10e Ideapad netbook.

The main attribute of the computing device is the incorporation of Windows XP Pro operating system. It also supports Windows XP Home or Novell SUSE 10 operating systems.

Designed for mobile users, the netbook features a 10.1-inch LED backlit screen with a resolution of 1024×600 pixels, webcam, ExpressCard 34 slot, optional Bluetooth, Ethernet port and Wi-Fi.


Also highlighted in the news over the past couple of weeks/months [1, 2, 3, 4] is the thin client from Wyse, which comes with SUSE as an option. This received a fair amount of coverage, e.g.:

1. Wyse beefs up thin clients

Wyse Technology announced its first Linux thin clients based on Wyse Enhanced SUSE Linux Enterprise and its first mobile thin client to use Linux. It also announced improved virtualization add-ons, and a new release of ThinOS, its BSD-based thin client implementation.

2. Linux Thin Clients: Lifting Wyse to Biggest Month Ever?

First, some background: Since Wyse is privately held, it’s difficult to estimate just how well the company is performing. But according to Chief Marketing Officer Jeff McNaught, Wyse generated record sales in October.

Marcel mentioned it in his show, as well.

Stories covered in today's newscast include SCO rising from the undead with an appeal, a shiny new Fedora 10, a brighter than bright future for Linux, Wyse guys make it big by being thin, and RedHat stock needs some lovin'.

Here's the video.

Ogg Theora


Novell's PR people blogged about SLES, the context being virtualisation in particular (where they collaborate with Microsoft).

According to Holger Dryoff, Novell vice president of Product Management for SUSE Linux Enterprise, “Novell will support HP’s new Virtual Connect Flex-10 modules on current and future versions of SUSE Linux Enterprise Server. The combination of HP Virtual Connect Flex-10 and SUSE Linux Enterprise Server from Novell running on HP’s BL495c blades delivers a powerful, fully supported ‘wire-once’ environment, with enhanced performance, scalability and quality of service. Customers get simplified management and administration of virtual machines and LAN and SAN connections, saving them time and money.”

According to this comment, OpenSUSE has been dropped by Zimbra, which sees insufficient demand for it.

Take Zimbra for instance, I've been using it for almost 2 years. Now they will no longer support Open SuSE for their next version. Their reasoning is they haven't had enough downloads for that distro and it costs too much to keep supporting it.

Is SLES supported?

Speaking of Zimbra, its parent company, Yahoo, is very visibly mentioned in this roundup which also covers Microsoft/Novell.

Microsoft, Novell eye Moonlight beta, system management: As Microsoft and Novell near the two-year anniversary of their controversial interoperability agreement, they are announcing a beta of Moonlight, which will bring Microsoft's Silverlight RIA technology to Linux. The companies are also rolling out the Advanced Management Pack, which enables management of Windows and Linux servers from a single console.


Apart from more new reviews of the Eee PC, such as this one where Xandros is mentioned very explicitly, there is not much to see or report. Here are a couple more that are in English (there are many non-English ones too):

1. Ultra-portable Asus EeePC 1000 40G shines

Another downside to the Eee is the operating system that it comes with – Xandros. Xandros OS is a flavor of Linux created by Xandros Corp., and its incarnation on the EeePC is very friendly for people not familiar with using Linux. It comes as a “tabbed desktop” – multiple desktops filled with shortcuts to pretty much everything a netbook user needs. Being a (somewhat) experienced Linux user, I was immediately turned off by this “easy-mode” operating system, and hunted the web for a way to make it better. It turns out that you can enable the “Advanced Mode” by modifying a few boot commands, which turned out to be a slightly retouched KDE desktop. I became quite sick of that as well, and soon found myself borrowing a friends USB CD drive to install Ubuntu 7.10, Intrepid Ibex (there is no CD drive in most netbooks). There are two features I’ve found that aren’t supported by Intrepid, which are the volume up/down keys, and the ability to turn off “click to touch” on the touchpad. A kernel exists meant specifically for EeePCs (it can be found at, though while fixing the volume key issue, it doesn’t address the “click to touch” option and seems to not come out ot standby mode very well. That thoroughly annoys me, since I leave my Eee on standby all day, every day, so I’m using the generic Linux kernel.

2. Asus Eee PC 904 HD review

At present, the 904 HD is only available in the UK with Windows XP – and not the excellent and highly usable Asus-tweaked Xandros Linux operating system found on other Eee PCs.

With the exception of Eee PC, the presence of Xandros remains very low.

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