I find most interesting in the link you posted the claim that Microsoft is giving away Windows XP for free to netbook OEMs. It seems Microsoft will go to all ends (including harming themselves) to keep Linux off of computers. Ubuntu
is self-sustaining even being free of charge, but will Windows be? I really really doubt it. This is a dangerous game Microsoft is playing.
The Register said:
"We are in an awkward situation now because they are giving away XP in the netbook market - they are
literally giving it way to OEMs," he claimed.
Yeah, the reason the Register used the word claimed is because Shuttleworth has no idea what MS is charging OEMs.
Giving away XP for free doesn't harm them at all, because that is not their current generation OS. What it does do is establish a beach head for the trimmed down OS which they will charge through the nose for. MS plays the long game, that's why they're successful.
Why do you think they turned a blind eye to piracy throughout the eighties? You think that didn't hurt their bottom line?
Personally, I don't think that Linux is going to make much headway in this market. They should put all their efforts into getting it onto as many phones and set-top boxes as possible. I keep saying this, don't attempt to take Microsoft head on - you will lose!
All they need to do is lower prices and you're back to square one. Attack from the flank; that is where the company is weakest because it suffers from terminal tunnel vision. It really cannot see anything beyond the desktop.