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What Happened in Mobile is Happening in Desktops

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Free software everywhere

Touchscreen computer
Photo by Barney Livingston from Brighton, UK

Summary: Tablets and smartphones, where Linux is the standard platform, are not the only form factors where freedom-respecting software is good enough for everyone

GNU/Linux is no underdog anymore. HP currently pre-installs GNU/Linux and it does not charge "Microsoft tax" [1]. As one who uses an HP laptop to write this, the feeling of saying it is pretty good, putting aside some of the negative sides of HP (no company is perfect). Almost any bit of hardware can run GNU/Linux [2], so excuses like technical difficulties (e.g. drivers) no longer pass muster and demand from the public is definitely growing (Google and its hardware partners sell many machines with GNU/Linux pre-installed). In this age of GNU/Linux with Steam and Android with Play, even gaming is hardly a valid excuse [3] (neither for game developers nor gamers). There are plenty of decent (user-friendly) desktop front ends, and even the notorious Unity is liked by some [4]. Some would go as far as saying that "Linux [became] too easy" [5,6] for the shrinking market which is desktops [7,8]. It is safe to say "shrinking" because even Intel, the company which cashed in on desktops, is feeling the pinch [9] as hardware becomes smaller and more efficient in the ours rooms and the back rooms also [10]. Tablets and smartphones, suffice to say, are an area dominated by Linux already. That is a growth area.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Workstation Computers From HP

    They do supply that other OS pre-installed but you can see the price difference between that and installing GNU/Linux.

  2. Create custom Linux-based systems regardless of the hardware

    Jeff Osier-Mixon is a community manager at Intel for The Yocto Project, an open source collaboration project that provides templates, tools and methods to help you create custom Linux-based systems for embedded products regardless of the hardware architecture. Basically: The Yocto Project allows development to happen without the worries of what hardware the code will run on.

  3. Windows 8.1, Linux, Android, and "The Next Big Thing"™

    Slightly off-topic from typical gaming related news, but I thought I would start a conversation since many devs and gamers I talk with often discuss this OS or that OS as “The Next Big Thing”™. The general consensus I get from the public is that Windows 8 got off to a rocky start given the changes they’ve made to the interface. From a gaming perspective Microsoft has only added incremental updates to DirectX 11 since the release of Windows 8.0. Microsoft today has released Windows 8.1 RTM and it comes with DX 11.2 (IMO nothing big, but some convenient updates). Despite public backlash against tiles and Windows apps, Microsoft decided to release the update via the Windows Store app (oh the irony). They also forgot to mention that you need a special update for Windows 8.0 in order to download 8.1. Not off to a good start. So I just finished the update and after waiting just a little over an whole hour for it to finish, I’m regretting it big time. My standard desktop account was replaced and I’m now logged in using my online Microsoft account. Seriously?

  4. The Linux Setup - Tynan, SETT Developer

    I just use the default Unity interface. It’s not perfect, but it doesn’t do anything egregiously bad like Windows does. I don’t like the launcher (I rely on Synapse instead), but I love the top bar with the unified messaging/audio/etc. The indicators on the sidebar are great, too.

  5. "Fed up with Windows? Linux too easy?"
  6. Fed up with Windows? Linux too easy? Get weird, go ALTERNATIVE

    It's hard to believe, looking at the modern computing world, but there is still more to life than Windows or Unix… and today, most of the alternatives run on vanilla x86 hardware and are free.

  7. The PC Industry Is Thriving

    Tablets and smartphones are PCs! The real problem, for some companies, is that they have been producing what Wintel wanted and not what consumers wanted, small cheap computers. Naturally, if you’re trying to sell these people big expensive computers, they won’t be buying. The market for personal computers is thriving, according Statista. Look at shipments per annum (millions):

  8. PC sales in spiralling death dive
  9. Intel to Play Fab for an ARM Chipmaker: Understanding What the Altera Deal Means

    Decision is puzzling given Intel's potential to catch up in the tablet market

  10. New supercomputer uses SSDs as alternative to DRAM, hard drives

    A new supercomputer being deployed this month in the U.S. is using solid-state drive storage as an alternative to DRAM and hard drives, which could help speed up internal data transfers.

More in Tux Machines

OpenStack in the Headlines

  • From OpenStack Summit, Red Hat Reports That the Deployment Era is Here
    As noted here yesterday, OpenStack is here to stay in enterprises. A new study by 451 Research analysts shows that about 72 percent of OpenStack-based clouds are between 1,000 and 10,000 cores and three fourths choose OpenStack to increase operational efficiency and app deployment speed. Meanwhile, in conjunction with OpenStack Summit in Barcelona, Red Hat is out with very notable results from its polling of its OpenStack user base. Its study found that production deployments increased hugely in the last year, according to a survey of 150 information technology decision makers and professionals carried out by Red Hat.
  • You can run the same programs on 16 different OpenStack clouds
    Cloud companies like to talk about about how you can avoid vendor lock-in. And OpenStack just showed how to make it happen. Sixteen different vendors did a live demo at OpenStack Summit showing that you could run the same software stack on 16 separate OpenStack platforms.
  • ​Where OpenStack cloud is today and where it's going tomorrow
    The future looks bright for OpenStack -- according to 451 Research, OpenStack is growing rapidly to become a $5-billion-a-year cloud business. But obstacles still remain.
  • ​Mirantis OpenStack: The good news and the bad news
    Mirantis recently signed a major deal with NTT, but the company is also laying off some of its employees.
  • The World Runs on OpenStack
    The OpenStack Summit keynotes got underway the morning of October 25, with Mark Collier, Chief Operating Officer of the OpenStack Foundation, declaring that the world runs on OpenStack.
  • Study: OpenStack is Marching Forward in Enterprises
    How fast is the OpenStack global cloud services market growing? Research and Markets analysts came out with a new report recently that forecasts the global OpenStack cloud market to grow at a CAGR of 30.49% during the period 2016-2020. Many enterprises now have large scale OpenStack deployments, and in conjunction with this week's OpenStack Summit in Barcelona, new study results are shedding light on exactly how entrenched this open cloud platform is in enteprises. The bottom line is: OpenStack is here to stay in enterprises. OpenStack deployments are getting bigger. Users are diversifying across industries. Enterprises report using the open source cloud software to support workloads that are critical to their businesses. These are among the findings in a recent study by 451 Research regarding OpenStack adoption among enterprise private cloud users. About 72 percent of OpenStack-based clouds are between 1,000 and 10,000 cores and three fourths choose OpenStack to increase operational efficiency and app deployment speed. The study was commissioned by the OpenStack Foundation. Here are some of the companies discussing their OpenStack deployments in Barcelona: Banco Santander, BBVA, CERN, China Mobile, Comcast, Constant Contact, Crowdstar, Deutsche Telekom, Folksam, Sky UK, Snapdeal, Swisscom, Telefonica, Verizon, Volkswagen, and Walmart. You can find some of the specific deployment stories from the companies at the OpenStack User Stories page.

Alpine Linux 3.4.5 released

The Alpine Linux project is pleased to announce the immediate availability of version 3.4.5 of its Alpine Linux operating system. This is a bugfix release of the v3.4 musl based branch, based on linux-4.4.27 kernels and it contains important security fixes for the kernel and for musl libc. Read more

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