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Linux Business Hardware

Dell Releases Ubuntu 7.10-Powered PCs 75

Posted by ScuttleMonkey
from the gutsy-moves dept.
sjvn writes "The official word will be out any minute now, but in the meantime DesktopLinux has learned that Dell will be releasing Ubuntu 7.10 on a laptop and desktop with immediate availability. And, as an extra added bonus, they're tossing in legal DVD-playback capability. In a word: Neat."
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Dell Releases Ubuntu 7.10-Powered PCs

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  • Silly Me (Score:4, Funny)

    by Skraut (545247) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @04:28PM (#21755830) Journal
    Here I thought computers were powered by electricity.

    Linux keeps getting better and better every day it seems.
  • Pitty their website doesn't work with Firefox 1.5 in Linux, I can't choose options such as OS. Doubt this qualifies as being slashdotted. Dell, we love you guys, but first things first....
    • Re:Pitty (Score:4, Informative)

      by osssmkatz (734824) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @04:32PM (#21755896) Journal
      Post this in the firefox forums, but make sure you're running the latest version (the latest patch). It's a bug I encountered on one other site with popup menus not working. You can also order by phone.

      --Sam
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Firefox 1.5.x has been EOL for a long time now. Upgrading Firefox to 2.0.0.11 will probably fix your problem.
      • by calebt3 (1098475)
        At this point he might as well wait for FF3.
        • Why? Is it going to take a month or something to download FF2, or is Firefox 2 so hard to install that it'd just be too much effort to install right now?
          • by calebt3 (1098475)
            No, it's just that he's already waited this long, and FF3 is already in (2nd) beta. Why upgrade just in time to upgrade again?
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by squiggleslash (241428)

              Because there's no downside?

              I mean, honestly, you're making it sound like this is unbelievably hard work. We're talking about downloading a program that installs without any trouble at all, and "just works" when upgrading. It's going to take him all of one minute to go through the upgrade process, if that, plus whatever time it takes to download. Twice in two months? Most people spend more effort switching on their computers in the morning.

              And, honestly, upgrading to FF3 as soon as it is released is pr

              • by calebt3 (1098475)
                I don't mean to make it sound hard. It's just that if he felt that upgrading was worth it, he would have done so already.
                • Upgrading software is a never ending story. It is very likely that his distro provides Firefox 2.x. It's just a matter of running the update program. Waiting for another release of Firefox doesn't make sense. Well, he can also wait for Firefox 4.x, 5.x, 6.x, ...
  • by kie (30381) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @04:36PM (#21755954) Homepage Journal
    The question is which will be first -
    dell actually promoting linux on their front page or duke nukem forever going gold...

    Seriously they must have sold a lot of the linux line to be doing this.
    I bet all the chairs in Redmond are very afraid at the moment.
    • by Kjella (173770)
      Personally I think this story is barely newsworthy. It's the *same* models as previously announced but with an upgraded distro. It means they haven't scrapped it but they haven't expanded it either, and using the latest distro is hardly a surprise. In about 6 months you'll see a switch to Hardy Heron, but don't let me spoil the surprise (whoops, guess I just did). Now, if they decided to keep offering the old distro that'd be big news - see XP vs Vista.
  • DVD Playback (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Poppler (822173) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @04:37PM (#21755956) Journal

    And, as an extra added bonus, they're tossing in legal DVD-playback capability.
    That's the real new here as far as I'm concerned. This is what needs to be done if they're going to try to sell these things to the home PC market.

    If they're smart, they'll continue on that path and add out-of-the-box support for mp3, aac, and other non-Free multimedia.
  • by FuzzyDaddy (584528) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @04:54PM (#21756202) Journal
    "In fact, one of the key requests from customers interested in Linux is the ability to watch their favorite DVD movies."

    Of course, if it's not your favorite DVD, then the player won't work.

    • by russlar (1122455)

      Of course, if it's not your favorite DVD, then the player won't work.
      Just MST3K it, it'll work fine.
  • I haven't read TFA (been here a while). Is the DVD playback crippled? Will it refuse to skip previews and such? It doesn't sound like a fully functional DVD player would get the blessing, and the promise not to sue, from the MPAA.
    • Doubt it. Dell just probably paid the patent fees and added deCSS.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by KingSkippus (799657) *

      Is the DVD playback crippled? Will it refuse to skip previews and such?

      A DVD player that refuses to skip previews and such isn't crippled, it's working exactly as it's designed to.

      I'm not saying that forcing you to watch commercials is a good thing, I think it's awful. But let's not act like players are supposed to completely ignore PUOs on DVDs, they're not. Those that do are the ones that aren't working as the specs detail they're supposed to, they just happen to be doing so in a manner that's conve

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by UncleTogie (1004853) *

        But let's not act like players are supposed to completely ignore PUOs on DVDs, they're not. Those that do are the ones that aren't working as the specs detail they're supposed to...

        According to whom? If we're talking the UOP specification [wikipedia.org], I can't think of many end users that would AGREE to have their control taken from them. I'd also be willing to bet that if asked "Would you like to let the movie studio control what you watch on your legally purchased DVD, or would YOU like to choose?" darn near 100% of the users would indicate the latter. If you check the linked article above, pay close attention to the last sentence in the first paragraph.

        Wonton abuse of a published spec is one

        • I can't think of many end users that would AGREE to have their control taken from them.

          Movie with loss of control, or no movie at all. What would most residential end users prefer?

          I'd also be willing to bet that if asked "Would you like to let the movie studio control what you watch on your legally purchased DVD, or would YOU like to choose?" darn near 100% of the users would indicate the latter.

          "Would you like to let the movie studio control what you watch on your legally purchased DVD, and in return have a wide selection of titles? Or would YOU like to choose and have only obscure films you've never heard of from countries you'll probably never visit?"

          • by WK2 (1072560)

            I can't think of many end users that would AGREE to have their control taken from them.
            Movie with loss of control, or no movie at all. What would most residential end users prefer?

            So if UOP became illegal, or for some reason impossible, or too difficult, then all of a sudden all of the movie producers will just pack up and go home and never create another movie again? I don't think so.

            • So if UOP became illegal, or for some reason impossible, or too difficult, then all of a sudden all of the movie producers will just pack up and go home and never create another movie again?

              FBI warnings reduce the likelihood of an ignorance of fact defense, which could reduce the damages that the copyright owner can collect from convicted[1] infringers. If a publisher cannot give FBI warnings on a given home video format, it might significantly raise the price of titles in that format to compensate for the cost of lost opportunity for damages. And if this increased price is not profitable for a given title, the publisher might just not release it in that format at all, instead choosing to r

              • by WK2 (1072560)

                FBI warnings reduce the likelihood of an ignorance of fact defense, which could reduce the damages that the copyright owner can collect from convicted[1] infringers. If a publisher cannot give FBI warnings on a given home video format, it might significantly raise the price of titles in that format to compensate for the cost of lost opportunity for damages.

                1) there is no reason the movie company can't display the FBI warning anyway.
                2) Everybody has seen the FBI warning. Most hundreds, maybe even thousands o

                • by tepples (727027)

                  5) UOP isn't used for FBI warnings. It is used for commercials.
                  Your Honor, if we weren't able to force viewing of the commercials, our advertisers would not pay us as much, and selling these discs at this price would be unprofitable.

                  Both HD-DVD and Blu-ray support UOP.
                  Because they don't want movie studios defecting en masse to the other format.
              • The annoying thing is they insist on showing (localized) copyright notices even in locales where ignorance of the law is not a valid defense. Besides that, skipping it means you have seen it at least once, as otherwise you wouldn't be wanting to skip it.
          • by pipatron (966506)

            Movie with loss of control, or no movie at all.

            What complete and utter bullshit. Like they never released any movies on VHS or Laserdisc because there wasn't any way to stop people from seeking.

            Do you seriously believe that the studious would rather stop making movies than releasing them on media where you can skip commercials?

            • Like they never released any movies on VHS or Laserdisc because there wasn't any way to stop people from seeking.
              VHS and other tape media never had random access, only fast play. Laserdisc already commanded a premium price that DVD generally does not match, especially after correcting for the increase in nationwide wages since the Laserdisc era.
        • According to whom?

          According to the people who came up with the DVD format [dvd-replica.com].

          I'd also be willing to bet that if asked "Would you like to let the movie studio control what you watch on your legally purchased DVD, or would YOU like to choose?" darn near 100% of the users would indicate the latter.

          I'd be willing to bet that if asked "Would you rather go work and earn $100, or would you like to have it for free from UncleTogie's personal bank account?" darn near 100% of the people would indicate the latter.

          • by Gunstick (312804)
            on the Web we had popup blockers, on DVD players we have commercial skippers.

            It's all the same. Industry abuses their own specs so they get abused back from the consumers.
      • by tepples (727027)

        But let's not act like players are supposed to completely ignore PUOs on DVDs, they're not.
        What if a DVD player were to honor the first consecutive 15 seconds of a UOP, and then ignore UOP after that? That much time is enough to display copyright notices and the like.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I had been seriously considering getting a Ubuntu laptop for a while now, but held off because they were still using Feisty. Time to buy myself a Christmas present!
    • I wish they cost less than a comparable windows system. They're acting like they are giving you a free OS, when they're really getting more money off of the Linux machines. Maybe they feel they incurred a greater cost finding and paying people that could support it? *shrug* Might as well continue building my own.
      • I wish they cost less than a comparable windows system. They're acting like they are giving you a free OS, when they're really getting more money off of the Linux machines.

        Major publishers of shareware pay home PC builders to get the unregistered versions of their products installed on the system before the end user first turns it on. Some Slashdot users have hypothesized that this makes up for the entire price of a high-volume OEM Windows license. The reason you don't get a discount on the PC with Ubuntu OS is that the shareware either isn't available for GNU/Linux (and doesn't run well in Wine) or has a Free counterpart that's as good or better.

  • 14" display (Score:4, Informative)

    by gorbachev (512743) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @05:23PM (#21756656) Homepage
    I wish they had at least a 15" display on these things. I hate to squint.

    Looks like Ubuntu 7.04 on 15" laptops, for now.
    • by ls -la (937805)
      If you seriously need a 15" monitor, you should get your eyes checked out. I'm posting this from my laptop with a 7" screen, and I don't really have to squint on this. Really, adding a bigger screen like that is just going to make the laptop bigger and heavier, and less appealing to carry around.
      • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

        by gorbachev (512743)
        Gee, thanks for assuming to know how I prefer to use my computers better than I do. Excuse me for not preferring a pecker sized monitor like you.

        I guess your eyesight is just better than mine. Congratulations.

        It never, ever ceases to amaze me how some idiots can't understand that people have different preferences, hence it might actually make sense for companies like Dell to give MORE choices to customers.

        But hey, I'm glad you're happy with your laptop. I'm very happy with mine. It has a 17" display. Love i
        • by piojo (995934)

          It never, ever ceases to amaze me how some idiots can't understand that people have different preferences.
          That was well said. Thas aside, small screens would also a problem for coders who absolutely need to multi-task, and whose productivity would be hampered if we couldn't fit multiple windows on the screen at the same time. Well, I guess I should just be writing code on 40 character lines; shame on me for being lazy.
        • "But hey, I'm glad you're happy with your laptop. I'm very happy with mine. It has a 17" display. Love it. Wish I could run Linux on it." What's stopping you? Download Ubuntu and try the live CD, it won't cripple you.
  • Europe? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by BlueParrot (965239) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @05:47PM (#21757022)
    Well, it doesn't matter too much as there are other options in Sweden, but will these be sold in Europe?
  • Besides the DVD-playback, what is so important about this? Vista machines were available from day one of its release. No major OEMs are still selling Win2K. OEMs will always move on to the next OS offered by MS, Canonical, Ret Hat, Novell, etc. Ubuntu PCs being easier to find on Dell's site would be more newsworthy.
    • by tepples (727027)

      Besides the DVD-playback, what is so important about this?
      Because it reminds us that a major PC builder is still selling PCs with an operating system not published by Microsoft or Apple.
  • Gee, thanks (Score:1, Funny)

    by epp_b (944299)

    And, as an extra added bonus, they're tossing in legal DVD-playback capability. In a word: Neat
    Wow, it's great to know that I can have my computer turned against me, and for it to be legitimate.
  • From the article:

    For graphics, the 530N comes with a 128MB Nvidia GeForce 8300GS graphics card.

    So it still needs proprietary drivers, right?

    • by StonyUK (173886)
      You can also get it with the Intel X3100 which has open drivers I believe.
    • by d3ac0n (715594)
      No, you can run an Nvidia card on FOSS drivers. You just won't get the full range of 3D capabilities that you would get with a proprietary driver. Of course, Ubuntu makes it easy to use the proprietaries, as it comes with them pre-loaded on the CD. So it's not a big deal to get them setup and loaded.

      Of course, if you are one of those purists who wants only FOSS software on your machine, I doubt very much you will be buying a Dell laptop anyway, so your opinion holds no weight.

      The rest of us just want our
    • So it still needs proprietary drivers, right?
      Virtually any Dell PC you buy will come with proprietary software on it. After you turn on your Dell PC, a piece of proprietary software called "BIOS" sets the video adapter and much of the rest of the chipset into a known state, does some checks on your RAM, and loads GRUB.
  • Linux Cost More? (Score:2, Informative)

    by phkhd (172530)
    So I went through and customized the same model with Windows Vista and with Ubuntu, to the same configuration (better LCD and larger battery, but otherwise stock). The Ubuntu model was roughly $854, and the Windows Model was roughly $824 (I might be off by a few bucks). But why is the Ubuntu model more than the Vista model? grrr.
    • by setagllib (753300) on Wednesday December 19, 2007 @07:02PM (#21757942)
      The Linux install is not subsidized with hundreds of badvertisement and spyware programs. You get a fixed, enhanced, tested Ubuntu 7.10 without any malware. To many people that's worth a lot more than Vista. Personally? I'd get the cheap Vista license and then replace the install with Ubuntu anyway, and then perform a ritual sacrifice to help a copy of Vista leave this world.
  • The PPC zealot in me first read the headline as "Ubuntu 7.10 PowerPCs."
  • Duck!

    I kid, I kid! Love this move on Dell's part. Get me a laptop with a working built-in webcam and I'm sold. Telecommuter? Naaa, just an expat.

    In unrelated news, there's a Duke Nukem teaser. Is it April 1 already?
  • According to 'El Reg [theregister.co.uk], Dell has sold around 40,000 Ubuntu powered PCs. To be fair, that's not too bad for an operating system that isn't Windows or Mac....

    Dell isn't a dumb company, if they're investing time and money in improving Ubuntu and making it more appealing to the user I guess they must think it can make them money.

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