Linux's biggest victory so far - Splashtop to ship on ASUS motherboards

Linux's biggest victory so far - Splashtop to ship on ASUS motherboards

Summary: In what I think is the biggest victory for Linux so far, DeviceVM's Splashtop Linux desktop will ship across the entire P5Q range of motherboards, with more to follow by the end of the year.

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In what I think is the biggest victory for Linux so far, DeviceVM's Splashtop Linux desktop will ship across the entire P5Q range of motherboards, with more to follow by the end of the year.

SplashtopDeviceVM, the award-winning developer of Splashtop™, today announced the proliferation of their innovative software across four new models of ASUS motherboards. ASUS, the leading worldwide motherboard, components and notebook manufacturer, has integrated Splashtop onto the new P5Q family of products, bringing their offering of Splashtop-enabled motherboards to a total of twelve. The new models are: P5Q Deluxe, P5Q-WS, P5Q3 Deluxe, and P5Q-E.

"We are excited to have expanded our partnership with ASUS across many product lines," says Mark Lee, co-founder and CEO of DeviceVM. "ASUS is not only a leading innovator in computer hardware, but is actively improving the entire PC consumer experience through software. We are excited to jointly drive the market innovation with ASUS."

The technology, branded Express Gate by ASUS, will mean that users will be able to boot up their systems in a matter of a few seconds and have access to the Internet, VoIP, and Web-based emailing without having to boot up into Windows (or another Linux-based distro installed onto the hard drive).

A fast, secure OS that I can boot into quickly and be able to access the web? Now that sounds like a great idea to me, and something that would be useful. What would make this feature really useful would be to see its inclusion on notebooks, so users can choose whether they want to boot into the Splashtop environment, or into a fully-blown OS.

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This ASUS deal sounds like a pretty big victory for Linux to me as it could put Linux in front of a LOT of potential users. Whether people use it though is another thing.

What do you think?

Topics: Hardware, Linux, Open Source, Operating Systems, Software

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96 comments
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  • I want one! But....

    How often is this BIOS replacement going to be updated? A normal BIOS gets a few updates (flashes) and then stays the same. That's no problem; it poses no security risks.

    But a BIOS replacement like this, with full internet access? Browser and all? That will need frequent updates, to remain safe from exploits. I hate to think what an exploit could do to my BIOS....

    Greetz, Pjotr.
    pjotr123
    • It'll be great until the day

      someone hacks the bios and controls the computer at the most basic level.
      AllKnowingAllSeeing
      • My thoughts exactly

        I was thinking the same thing, or even if there is an update to your web browser ... how much of a geek are you going to have to be to update this. Let's see, compiled in assembly language and pow, there you have it.

        I would like one of these myself but with the power schemes nowadays, your computer can be back on in a few seconds anyway, how much time are you really going to save once you start browsing around on a computer with no firewall, etc. - and don't start with the "it's Linux, so it's secure" stuff, if there are enough of them out there, it will get exploited.
        riveroad
      • Hack a bios?

        How would you hack a BIOS? You'd have to flash the EEPROM while no one's looking. And what's what's stopping someone from doing that now?
        deanders
        • ...

          Physical access to the EEPROM... ]:)
          Linux User 147560
        • Exactly....

          And that's the big thing here... It is on a completely different level of the computer architecture and pretty much unhackable from a remote location.

          I remember reading about this stuff probably 8 years ago and it was in development then.

          A whole lot of development has gone into this and I have to admit it's entertaining reading all the armchair computer & security experts marching out their critiques.

          Question: Who here has modified their bios?
          Ok, now do it remotely :p
          awasson@...
    • Re: I want one! But....

      Is this merely a BIOS replacement, or is it a full fledged ROM image elsewhere on the motherboard? I would think that the BIOS would need to be independent of the SplashTop environment. I see this as a possibility of a move of the OS back into solid-state and off of the hard disk?which in my mind could only be a good thing. How many zillions of times have people the world over had to re-install the OS because of one minor error on the hard disk, versus how many times when the OS is held in solid-state?
      Billsey
  • RE: Linux's biggest victory so far - Splashtop to ship on ASUS motherboards

    Like all things linux it will be a complete failure. It won't be long before someone writes a trojan to completely trash the bios and erase linux right off of there -- which actually would be a good thing for the end user. The other problem is once people try it and realize that its linux and just how nonfunctional it really is they will just continue to boot into Microsoft Windows where they know they have their email, photos, and documents all stored. They can browse the web, access all of their applications, play games, and communicate with one another in Windows. Linux is just too limiting. The only people who buy the ASUS board are the do it yourselfers, and those are all gamers and they don't run linux since it doesn't do games. These boards are going to have a very very small percentage of sales as there is no need for them. All other manufactures build their own and sell them OEM. Again, linux fails.
    Loverock Davidson
    • Blech

      Like all things LoveRock it will be a complete failure. It won't be long before someone targets his system with trojans to completely erase Windows right off of there and replace it with Fedora 9 -- which actually would be a good thing for the end user. The other problem for him is once people try it and realize that it's Linux and just how wonderful it really is they will let him go, downsize him, show him the door etc. They will find that they can browse the web, access all of their applications, play some cool games, and communicate with one another using their new Linux. They will find that Windows was so limiting and Linux has set them free. Again, Windows fails.
      zkiwi
      • OMG How original! LOLZ0R!!1

        Proves you are a linux fanboy because you had to copy what I said! LOL!! Its no surprise you need others (me in this case) to think for you.
        Loverock Davidson
        • LOLZ0R!!1

          What a sad little man you are!
          aussieblnd@...
      • Blech! Mainstream customers want Windows. Again, Linux FAILS!

        Like all things Zkiwi it will be a complete bleching failure. Once people try Linux and realize they can't install their favorite windows software and favorite windows games, they'll return the computer to the store and get the more expensive PC with Vista on it. They won't format the harddrive to install windows because Mainstream Customers don't know how since they ain't Geeky Linux worshipers. It'll be easier for Mainstream Customers to cart the Linux Craputor back to the store they bought it from. The will find that Linux is not Windows. Again, Linux Fails.
        GiveMeGizmos
        • One thing has escaped you...

          I'm a well-known Macophile. Do try and keep up.
          zkiwi
        • You contradict yourself, GiveMeGizmos.

          In your overwrought zeal to bash what you evidently loathe and don't understand, you make a point that obliterates your own conclusion. Your logic is difficult to follow if not absolutely obtuse.

          You observe that a knowledgeable consumer, the "Geeky Linux worshiper," does apparently know how to format a hard drive and install an OS. That is correct, but a knowledgeable Windows user does too, out of necessity if they build their own systems. Without us enthusiasts and clone builders, Microsoft, and Intel as well for that matter, would be nowhere near the behemoth they are now. MS-DOS just worked, without the high price of an IBM PC with PC-DOS or a Mac, and was backwards compatible. Perhaps that's why Microsoft is so threatened by Linux. Linux distributors are following Microsoft's example, "giving away" the software that lead to their dominance in OS market share.

          You also point out that mainstream consumers are befuddled by computers, and will therefore opt for that which Microsoft would foist onto everybody, including the knowledgeable, if they are able. You rightly point out that Windows appeals to the lowest common denominator among computer users/consumers.

          This does not illustrate Linux failing; it simply defines consumer ignorance about technology of any kind. It's all magic to the ignorant masses.

          "Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic."
          Sir Arthur C. Clarke
          djchandler
          • People use windows because...

            ..they are too dumb to use anything else.
            ThereThere
        • Real men use Linux

          Windows is a Big Mac and regular Coke. Linux is a hogroast with barrels of hard-hitting home brew and good company. Do you really want to spend your life in the plastic confines of McDonalds listening to piped musak? You could be out in the woods with Linux, having a real computer experience, being a real man, a real hacker, a real programmer. The choice is yours :)
          Don Collins
          • Real men use Linux

            "a real programmer"

            You should have left this one out! Linux/mac does not even come close to windows as far as technical innovation is concerned. I don't even know where to start...windows has a better (in everyway) programming model (.Net), it has a very powerful shell light years ahead of standard linux shells (powershell), it has superior graphics capabilities (DirectX), ...

            But then again I guess you'd know this if you were a "real" programmer.
            sdx2000
          • ...

            So much better that it's been the pipe line for so many infections! Yup! That's better!

            Easier to use, this is true and cannot be denied... better? LOL, depends on the eye of the beholder I suppose... and I know a lot of very good programmers that would argue the opposite is true. ]:)
            Linux User 147560
          • Re:...

            "and I know a lot of very good programmers that would argue the opposite is true"

            Then let them speak for themselves! It will be a good learning process. Bring it on.
            sdx2000
          • you really should get out more often

            It is true that Microsoft has systemically killed $$ investment into technologies that they don't own. So, for instance, the openGL platforms that were STANDARDS of the world for advanced graphics don't draw the interest they should because microsoft-bubble-world programmers such as yourself see no value unless MS makes it part of their monopoly.

            And I've know quite a few programmers that love languages that let them do lots while being completely ignorant of how to program well.

            Windows has the worlds largest monopoly and mountains of cash behind them, yet they constantly fail to set good standards. You'd think it they were as fantastic as you think, they would be showing the world how to do things right. It usually the opposite.

            When I need to search my Windows PC for things, I have always used programs that port advanced GREP (a UNIX staple for decades) to Windows because it puts all of Microsoft's shell search capabilities to shame, and always have.

            Mac has historically implemented better user interfaces prior to Windows, and if you want to see what Windows will look like 3-5 years from now, just look to a Mac.

            I use backup programs that implementing historical versioning on my files, which has existed in OpenVMS at the OS level since... I dunno... the 80s. WHo need a recycle bin when the OS versions every file automatically.

            Unix shell scripting versus Windows? Are you kidding me? WIndows is just catching up with the versatility and power that UNIX has had for 20 years.

            OS Logging? Windows is pathetic. Look to the versatility and completeness of syslogging to see how real systems log events.

            Performance Monitor to understand performance of your system? Please. Unix basic IOSTAT give clearer more accurate info. Microsoft can't handle reporting CPU %s on multi-threading, or multi-processor. Processes max out at 20-21% on a four-CPU server. ?!?! They can't report memory usage properly.
            royalef