Linux users wanting to flex their legal MP3 buying muscles will be pleased to hear that Amazon has finally
got around the finishing the Linux versions of its MP3 download software.
Like the Windows version, the Amazon MP3 Downloader
allows you to purchase reasonably-priced MP3 tracks from selected albums and queue them up for download. The great news is that, unlike similar services such as Napster and iTunes, the songs are standard MP3 format and completely free from digital rights management: you can whack 'em straight on your favourite MP3 player and they'll run.
The Linux version of the software is available in a variety of packages for different distributions including a .deb for Ubuntu and Debian and a .rpm (Red-Hat Package Manager) for Fedora 8 and OpenSuSE 10.3. Sadly, the source is not
available: if your open-source OS of choice isn't one of the aforementioned then you're out of luck.
Still, it shows a growing acceptance of desktop Linux in the mainstream, and demonstrates that Amazon at least believes there is enough of a market for Linux software that they would spend precious time and money developing for what many companies still see as a niche OS.
The software can be installed from the Amazon website
, and the once-bookseller has even provided a small selection of freely downloadable music so you can test it out without spending any hard-earned.
A sign of the times, or just Amazon desperately trying to get as much market share in the legal music download sector as possible – no matter what? Share your thoughts over in the forums