December 18th, 2008

flock

Eee with Linux: set up for failure?

If you've followed the tech web sites and blogs, you'll note that ASUS has been going on about the high rate of returns on netbooks with Linux preinstalled.

In view of my experiences with the Eee 900A, I have to wonder whether ASUS is intentionally setting Linux up to fail--then, after having received the Linux community's kudos for coming out with Linux on the Eee, they can make the Evil Empire happy with plausible deniability. Hey, it's not our fault; people just don't like the Eee with Linux.

Never mind that as shipped, the 900A is unusable because the immediately-downloaded updates utterly fill the 4 GB SSD. Joe User doesn't know to go looking for alternatives like Ubuntu Eee; he's just faced with a computer he can't use, or that some person he's giving to can't use. He rightly thinks it should be usable as it arrives, concludes it's a piece of junk, and takes it back where the salesman can upsell him a more expensive netbook or a full-fleldged notebook with Windows preloaded, assuring him that by golly, this is something he can get some work done with!

Maybe I need to get myself a roll of Reynolds Wrap, but it seems a very plausible theory to me.
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