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Dell drops online sales of Ubuntu

Dell drops online sales of Ubuntu

Dell's Ubuntu-based systems have quietly disappeared from the company's on-line store.

Dell has stopped selling consumer PCs and laptops featuring Ubuntu Linux operating system on its website, but claims it remains committed to the OS.

According to a Dell spokesman, who talked to PC Pro regarding the disappearance of the Ubuntu-based systems, the company is "currently making some changes to our Ubuntu pages, and as a result, they [the systems] are available through our phone-based sales only."

When quizzed as to the reason for the 'changes' which have seen Dell's Ubuntu-based systems disappear from the website - with only a single, business-oriented laptop available with the OS based on a search of the site - the Dell spokesman claimed that "the reason why they're not on our main pages is because Ubuntu systems are primarily targeted towards advanced users and enthusiasts, and the vast majority of consumers purchase PCs with Microsoft Windows pre-installed."

Dell's decision to restrict Ubuntu-based systems to telephone sales only - with, it has to be pointed out, no actual advertising to alert people of the fact that such systems are available if they bother to call up and ask - is likely to become something of a self-fulfilling prophecy: with no easy way to order a system running Ubuntu, Windows-based systems will continue to dominate the sales charges - giving Dell the perfect opportunity to cease offering the devices altogether at a later date with a minimum of backlash.

PCMag.com points out that Dell's own advice for choosing between Windows or Ubuntu warns that the Linux-based operating system is only suitable for users who "do not plan to use Microsoft Windows," or those who are "interested in open source programming" - a somewhat restricted set of choices that may come as a surprise to the operating system's estimated 12 million users.

Do you think that Dell's decision to drop Ubuntu-based systems from its website indicates a desire to drop the line altogether, or is the company just responding to a general lack of interest and making it easier for the vast majority of its customers to find the Windows-based system that they're looking for? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

32 Comments

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Phalanx 26th July 2010, 13:40 Quote
I think it's the narrow-mindedness of Dell and companies like them in issues such as this that hold back other operating systems from becoming a proper contender (in terms of market share. I know Unbuntu is very good). The fact they believe Linux is only for open-source programming is just pathetic.
flibblesan 26th July 2010, 13:47 Quote
If they are still available by phone then why are Dell telling people that they no longer offer Ubuntu systems? Three members of my local Linux user group tried to order computers with Ubuntu from Dell over the phone to be told that, and the only option was a machine without Windows. They paid the same price but got some small hardware upgrades.
crazyceo 26th July 2010, 14:41 Quote
Ouch!

Who cares?
saspro 26th July 2010, 14:46 Quote
Dell can't support Linux properly, instead of training members of staff it's easier to stop selling it (especially as they don't make a profit on the software)
Tangster 26th July 2010, 14:52 Quote
Obviously.=, why would any company want to have to train new staff to deal with queries about linux?
JA12 26th July 2010, 15:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by saspro
Dell can't support UBUNTU properly
There, fixed that for you. And Dell don't have to provide customer support. Canonical can do that just fine. It's called collaboration.

Speaking of which.. Dell have made deals with MS concerning Windows Phone 7. And just after that the Ubuntu offerings start to disappear. Coincidence?
MS offered Windows Phone 7 to HP as well but HP said no thanks. They have that field covered with Linux-based systems. Personally, I would go to HP.
crazyceo 26th July 2010, 16:04 Quote
HP have actually said yes and will be launching Windows Mobile 7 devices in the Autumn. We all know how commercially bad Linux based products have been to the big players. It wasn't for trying as the masses wanted Windows lookalike and couldn't be arsed to learn Linux based OS.

What's the problem here? If you want a linux based OS then just download and install one!
general22 26th July 2010, 16:31 Quote
THE YEAR OF LINUX DESKTOP!
Gareth Halfacree 26th July 2010, 16:33 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by general22
THE YEAR OF LINUX DESKTOP!
I'll believe it when I see it. And I say that as one who uses Linux on all his laptops, desktops, and netbooks both professionally and personally.
Toploaded 26th July 2010, 17:29 Quote
I love Linux, but I'd never expect a company like dell to sink the resources into supporting it. I'm surprised they ever did.
Fabou 26th July 2010, 18:58 Quote
That's why ton of people barely using a computer to broswe eb and read mail think they have to pay overpriced windows because it's PC or mac (mac being even more expencive).
Singularity 26th July 2010, 19:07 Quote
Well that's a dick move. I don't know if it's pressure from Microsoft, or just Dell's not caring about customers, but this makes me sad. True, most linux users are install it themselves, but I do believe that every notebook should be available without an OS. If we don't want to use windows, we don't want to have to pay for it.
TheUn4seen 26th July 2010, 19:25 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo

What's the problem here? If you want a linux based OS then just download and install one!

Because I don't want to pay for something I won't use (MS oem license)? At least Dell offers some notebooks without any OS (but not in every country), too bad Sony won't do the same, as Dell's notebooks aren't really worth the time and money lately (overheating and/or throttling CPUs, poor build quality and so on).
leexgx 26th July 2010, 19:26 Quote
you can still ring them up and get Ubuntu installed on the system not sure what the issue is

Most users would not buy an linux based system due to issues getting stuff working, even my self tryed it but nothing has changed from 10 years ago when i last used it i can still brake it in less then 1 hr use (norm broken updater that has No self heal so once broken you need to drop to command line and fix it that way that tends to be longer then the a to z)
crazyceo 26th July 2010, 20:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by TheUn4seen
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo

What's the problem here? If you want a linux based OS then just download and install one!

Because I don't want to pay for something I won't use (MS oem license)? At least Dell offers some notebooks without any OS (but not in every country), too bad Sony won't do the same, as Dell's notebooks aren't really worth the time and money lately (overheating and/or throttling CPUs, poor build quality and so on).

Then don't buy from Dell!
Skutbag 26th July 2010, 21:09 Quote
There should be a non-Windows / free OS option - and as a large supplier to the masses, they should set an example. Yes the option is still there, but this is about awareness in the general public.
JA12 26th July 2010, 21:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
HP have actually said yes and will be launching Windows Mobile 7 devices in the Autumn. We all know how commercially bad Linux based products have been to the big players.

http://www.gadgetvenue.com/hp-windows-phone-7-wont-happen-07241043/

Yes, we all know how commercially bad Linux based products have been to the big players. Big players like Google, IBM, Dell, HP, Cisco? No wait...
echeb 26th July 2010, 22:52 Quote
i bet this is because of low sales due to NO ADVERTISING WHATSOEVER. did you ever see the word 'ubuntu' on any of the things they put inside papers and magazines? and surprise surprise there is
"no actual advertising to alert people of the fact that such systems are available if they bother to call up and ask"

ps. "There should be a non-Windows / free OS option" there is, if you are in Britain.
http://www.novatech.co.uk/novatech/laptop/range/x10white.html
scrimple3D 26th July 2010, 23:04 Quote
What if they're being given a cash incentive to drop Linux as an operating system option? Is that a possibility?
flibblesan 26th July 2010, 23:28 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skutbag
There should be a non-Windows / free OS option - and as a large supplier to the masses, they should set an example. Yes the option is still there, but this is about awareness in the general public.

It's not difficult. Call them up to order and request no Windows OS. They will then offer a free hardware upgrade instead of the OS.
LAGMonkey 27th July 2010, 00:38 Quote
Didnt Dell do this a while ago? As in offer Ubuntu laptops and then stop selling them.
Im getting a serious case of DeJaVu right now
13eightyfour 27th July 2010, 09:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skutbag
There should be a non-Windows / free OS option - and as a large supplier to the masses, they should set an example. Yes the option is still there, but this is about awareness in the general public.

Why should they set an example? businesses drop commercially unviable products all the time, from their own figures dell have decided to drop the product from online purchase, you can still get it if you really want it though.

The problem is that linux ISNT for your average joe thats spent the last 10+ years on a windows OS, there will always be issues with some software, hardware or peripheral which we (bit-techers) would work around, that average joe couldnt even with all the steps laid out infront of them.

I usse ubuntu on my netbook and media PC and its better in those situations than any windows install, but i still wouldnt use it on my main rig or lappy.
steveo_mcg 27th July 2010, 10:29 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo

What's the problem here? If you want a linux based OS then just download and install one!
Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyceo
Then don't buy from Dell!

I rarely say this to crazyceo but I agree.


urgh i feel dirty....
Psytek 27th July 2010, 11:45 Quote
Money.


Is the explanation.


You're welcome.
MrZephyr 27th July 2010, 22:54 Quote
I reckon that 'joe public' don't understand the concept of an operating system and would be genuinely amazed that a pc could run without windows being installed on it!

In fact they probably think that windows is part of the hardware, not software!! So to then have a company telling them that they could try something that they haven't ever heard of, when they know windows and (ignorantly) like windows is an absurd proposition... people don't like change and never will.

I like linux, but having just been studying it next to windows, people surveyed just don't like it because it isn't windows... can't get around that.
Yslen 28th July 2010, 01:30 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrZephyr
I reckon that 'joe public' don't understand the concept of an operating system and would be genuinely amazed that a pc could run without windows being installed on it!

In fact they probably think that windows is part of the hardware, not software!! So to then have a company telling them that they could try something that they haven't ever heard of, when they know windows and (ignorantly) like windows is an absurd proposition... people don't like change and never will.

I like linux, but having just been studying it next to windows, people surveyed just don't like it because it isn't windows... can't get around that.

How is liking windows "ignorant"? There are plenty of things to like about it.

Of course, the systems dell was/is selling with Ubuntu on aren't really good enough to run windows anyway... netbooks are far too wimpy for a proper windows 7 experience, IMHO.
Yslen 28th July 2010, 02:36 Quote
seems Dell have added an ubuntu desktop to their US site... check it out!
Shagbag 28th July 2010, 06:23 Quote
Maybe there aren't enough sales to justify it in their product line. With Intel scaling back it's subsidies, Dell is less willing to put the finance into developing a market.

I think we should also be mindful of the move by consumers away from static desktop PCs to mobile devices. With Google prepping ChromeOS and Android already being the largest smartphone OS, I expect we'll see Dell selling these devices in the future.
Phil Rhodes 28th July 2010, 13:28 Quote
Quote:
Linux is only for open-source programming is just pathetic.

This does rather beg the question "what else is it for".

Being a somewhat worse, more difficult-to-use desktop OS than Windows? Frankly I'm still impressed every time I get a Linux box to successfully print something, it's not really a day to day experience I particularly hanker after.
Booga 15th February 2014, 20:02 Quote
@ Phil Rhodes.
Really?
I installed Xubuntu on my Dads old PC the other day and it recognised the printer straight away and printed without having to install any additional drivers. Getting the scanner to work involved downloading the HP drivers, but that was simple enough, even for a Linux noob like me.
NickCPC 16th February 2014, 00:46 Quote
Holy thread revival batman... O_O
Cthippo 16th February 2014, 01:10 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by NickCPC
Holy thread revival batman... O_O
Bit needs a collection of memes for occasions like this that are resident to the sire, like the slileys are.

Just think how much easier it would be top type : holythreadrevival : and get that graphic!

Also, : nope :
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