Dell, Linux, Netbooks, and Microsoft Lies

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Leave it to the Brits at the Register to call out more lies from Microsoft about Linux versus Windows. In this case, Dell: Linux v Windows Netbook Returns a “Non-issue,” a report from OpenSource World reported Dell exec Todd Finch refuting Microsoft's Kevin Turner's lies that Linux netbook returns were “four or five times higher” than Windows netbook return stats.

You'd think Microsoft would treat Dell with a little more decency, since Dell is either number one or number two in PC and server sales depending on sales results in a particular quarter. But no, Microsoft spokespeople keep slamming Linux and netbooks at every opportunity. I'm glad the Register printed the other side of the story, from Dell.

“We don't see a significant difference between the return rate for Windows versus the return rate for Linux,” said Finch, talking about Dell netbooks. “We've been quite pleased with the stability and technical soundness of the Linux machines.”

Yes, Microsoft's Windows powers 90 percent of so of all desktops, laptops, and netbooks. But that doesn't mean people aren't buying Linux netbooks.

Most Linux products are sold online, netbooks included. Few if any large retailers stock Linux netbooks, laptops, or desktops. Every now and then, a Wal-Mart or a Best Buy or similar retailer will make Open Source community headlines by offering a Linux product, but it's always on their Web site and rarely on store shelves.

This retail disparity does not give Microsoft spokespeople the right to blatantly lie about Linux netbook return rates. Kudos to the Register for printing this story.

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