Preinstalled Linux on consumer PC? PC World says Yes

The UK's first ever Linux loaded desktop PCs will go on sale at PC World next week as the popular open source operating system steps up to Microsoft on its home turf.

The "advent 8707 Linux" PCs will be fitted with the Mandrake v6.0 Linux operating system distribution and will come with two applications: Word Perfect 8 and Star Office 5.1.

The machines use an Intel Pentium III 450 processor, 64MB RAM, 6.4M GB hard drive, 17" Monitor, 56K-modem and colour printer.

PC World says the offer will be attractive to those intrigued by Linux but wary of its complexities. "This software is already available via a free download from the web, however the subsequent installation can be troublesome even for experienced user. Pre-installing means no endless searching around Internet sites and no tricky and lengthy downloads."

Manufacturers also appear to be in the grips of Linux fever at the moment. IBM will Tuesday announce the availability of technical support for Linux users in 165 countries and plans to provide world-wide support by June.

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