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Do-No-Evil Saturday – Part II: SUSE at Schools, Linspire Inside Xandros, Xandros Still Nowhere

Posted in GNU/Linux, Linspire, Microsoft, Novell, Xandros at 11:26 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Gnu eats grass

GNU is Not Novell, Xandros


The good product from Userful has occasionally produced some buzz in media. It has gone on for quite some time. This predates the deal with Microsoft and it’s a shame that Omni and Userful came to rely on Novell. Either way, Userful made a lot of ‘noise’ over the past week, so here is some of the coverage found.

The press release relied on some new initiative to create fresh buzz.

Omni Technology Solutions, Userful and Novell have created an exciting initiative to bring Multi-station Linux Desktops to computer labs and classrooms around the globe. Every university, college and school district in the world is entitled to a free 30-user Desktop Multiplier™ licence (software valued at $2,970, hardware not included). The first 30 customers will also receive a free 30-user subscription to SUSE® Linux Enterprise Desktop from Novell.

At the same time came this from omni-ts.com, as well as the press release.

Omni™, Userful™ and Novell® have created an exciting initiative to bring Multi-station Linux Desktops to computer labs and classrooms around the globe.

Every university, college and school district in the world is entitled to a free 30-user Desktop Multiplier™ licence (software valued at $2,970, hardware not included).

Trading Markets obtained an article about it through some ‘tubes’.

Omni Technology solutions today (10 September) announced an initiative in collaboration with Userful and Novell that will make one 30-user Userful Multiplier licence available to ‘every university, college and school district in the world’ free of charge, providing the licence is claimed by 30 November 2008.

Novell’s PR department tried to hype it up as well.

From IDG came this article, which appears in several Web properties of IDG.

Every university, college and school district in the world is entitled to a free 30-user Linux-based virtual desktop software license under a new initiative spearheaded by Omni, Userful and Novell.

From those press release ‘processors’ of TMCNet a reader could receive what only looks like an original article. Another one which can be here is at least sufficiently different from the press release.

There was not much else from SUSE, but the MSI laptop which carries SLED had a big oopsie reported. Posts which cover it seemingly neglect to say if there was a recall or just a delay caused internally.

Looks like MSI might have had to put the brakes on the release of its Linux flavoured Wind little laptop and issue a product recall quick sharp instead.

The issue? It looks like someone that was, er, testing it before it was released to the public forgot to remove all their test files. Test files that appear to consist of illegally downloaded movies and personal photos. Double whoops.


One laptop that’s still doing pretty well carries a derivative of Xandros, but other than that, customers don’t seem to be approaching Xandros for their GNU/Linux needs and requirements. Here is an arguably-promotional Xandros article, which has become common thing coming from ECT (they seem to favour some companies, just like eWeek):

Kettler runs the CNR part of the operation. The CNR platform standardizes the process and eliminates the complexity of finding, installing and managing Linux software for the most popular desktop Linux distributions.

Linspire developed the CNR platform in 2002. The upgraded service that will be offered by Xandros will be a Web 2.0 structure, said Kettler. It will be available before the end of the year.

So, it becomes clear that Linspire indeed plays an active and distinct role inside Xandros. The trademark “Linspire”, on the other hand, seems totally dead, unlike CNR. Kevin Carmony is far from impressed, having single-handedly ruined the reputation of Linspire and probably caused it to be sold off thereafter. He also adds:

Xandros pretends to be moving Freespire to Debian, when in reality, all they are doing is using the Freespire brand as the free version of Xandros. Because Xandros is based on Debian, not Ubuntu, this was the easiest way to do this without using any engineers.

Either way, people have their *buntus and Debian. They don’t need costly ‘patent protection’ on top of that and tools like Synaptic make CNR unnecessary. How can Xandrospire distinguish itself from on-par competition? Maybe like Novell, using “peace of mind” that it does not even have (Mono is only for Novell, according to Microsoft)?

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