back to article HP inching away from Vista's bad rep?

With Apple's expanding Mac sales and other OS efforts suggesting to PC vendors that flogging non-Windows boxes isn't the kiss of death in the consumer space, Hewlett-Packard may be considering a life less dependent on Microsoft's operating system. BusinessWeek cites anonymous sources at HP claiming the tech giant is …


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  1. Anonymous Coward

    linux on the desktop is the wrong question

    The seemingly annual questions about Linux being ready or suitable as a desktop OS is no longer the right question to ask. Perhaps its not, at least not for the mainstream windows user, but it seems linux is ready for everywhere but the desktop.

    The rise in 'web-book' devices that only need to address the fairly limited needs of most people (web/email) is where linux is already streets ahead, its a lot easier to slim down linux when it is slim to start with.

  2. Matt Bryant Silver badge

    A Linux partnership more likley, and TouchSmart for Vista.

    Given HP's long history of working WITH the community rather than AGAINST it like Sun (amyone remember the fve minutes of Sun Linux?), I would say it is much more likely HP will partner with someone like Red Hat or SuSE to produce a "simpler" Linux desktop. Alternatively, there are a number of simplified Linux desktops out there already (use the search tool at to see the variety on offer) that HP could polish up. HP could write their own Linux, but why do they need to?

    My own experience with HP and Vista was getting it downgraded to XP on some HP desktops that were accidentally ordered earlier this year with Vista installed. The HP support guys were helpful in getting a solution to a problem our Mickey$haft rep grumbled about, but the HP guys did admit they were getting "dozens" of requests for downgrades! But the problems with Vista are so deep in the code I don't think it is something HP can polish up. McKinney was probably referring to the HP TouchSmart all-in-one PCs which have a very funky interface that seems to appeal to the iGeneration. I played with one at an HP show and the comment I heard most often was "a PC like my iPhone".

  3. Jesse Dorland

    Happy day for Linux user

    Linux users like myself were laughed at because we were not following the masses, and now every week people come to me asking me about "Microsoft alternative". This week alone I have installed Kubuntu (Debian based distro) on ten computers. Also in my local PC Store where I work as Computer Tech, we sold over 20 Linux notebooks -- virtually everyone was happy to get a "non-vista" PC!.

    In a way we are leading the revolution. Of course, Microsoft will control the PC market in future, but writing are on the wall.

    Linux, because it is as diametrically opposed to Microsoft as George W. Bush is to sanity.

  4. Martin Owens

    Taken so long?

    What's with these guys? HP, Dell, Asus, Toshiba. they could be pushing the Linux desktop in the direction they want with their own controls over their respective destinies. Instead their still treating the FOSS world like some giant amorphous vendor with the same farcical results.

    I think Dell are getting it, their experiences dealing with the Ubuntu community seemed to have made their development more interactive. Instead of just using ubuntu they seem more willing to develop with it for their own needs.

    Still, took them long enough. HP on the other hand have been out right hostile. they might have the best working linux printers but their still bottom of the list for laptop support.

  5. Anonymous Coward

    HP Consumer Software

    OTOH, Vista might behave OK if it weren't for the atrocious drivers and overblown services which HP infests your machine with should you buy one of their printers. A basic printer driver seems to involve loading about 50MB of software, and if you want some basic utilities such as, I don't know, letting you know how much ink is left then it's the full 350MB for you.

    Talk about pot and kettle ...

  6. stigweard

    CEO - Who's inching from what, where!

    This would seem to indicate there's not going to be a lot of R&D going on in the future...

    ...unless that means Redundancies and Downsizing.

    Ironically I see a future where Vista begins to take back market share MS has lost. The logic being do you pay for something that's clunky and does most things consumers want and exists today or do you spend money building something that does all things consumers want elegantly and exists 1,2, 3+ years from now? Financial Armageddon, oh how we laughed :|

    @jeremy - Have you seen the Dell Inspiron Mini 9? 250 squid + vat, delivered next day. Linux is not ahead, it is very, very far behind - not in its capabilities, but in the "community's" capacity to deliver a commoditized product.

  7. Paul

    never believe anything till it's been officially denied

    So HP are denying having a *HUGE* R&D team working on this? Interesting wording.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    Good news all round?

    Okay, so HP are not only trying to put something on top of Vista to make it less annoying, and at the same time maybe doing a Linux-based alternative? To me this sounds like a win-win all round - Windows diehards get a "better" Vista, and folks that are open to choice have (yet another!) option - presumably supported on the HP hardware. If this is the case, then I for one say "well done HP!" :)

    People keep saying "Linux is/isn't ready for the desktop" - when my experience is that "Linux is ready for some peoples desktops". If you're not a diehard Windows user then Linux is just as relevant to you as Vista. In fact some of the younger users I know went to Linux as an experiment because Windows was annoying them (esp. the slow boot up times) and haven't looked back. Then word gets around that there's a different way...

    The EEE etc has also got to be good news - why bother with Linux on your Netbook/Nettop only to then have to unlearn to use Vista on the desktop. There's a question - is anyone doing a Vista netbook - all the Windows ones I've seen have been running XP? Personally I'm very sure that there's enough punters out there for a Linux (or three) and Windows.

    Interesting times ahead perhaps for all concerned.

  9. The BigYin

    Linux? Could be, could be

    Just installed Ubuntu myself on an old laptop. Quite impressed. A bit tricking going off the beaten path and there are some 100% vital apps missing (I'm struggling to get OpenSawn to work, and then to connect if to a Checkpoint VPN - anyone any ideas?) but it is good.

    For the average user, things just work (and the "average" user just wants their web, mail and chat). For the business user, there's a few rough edges still to be smoothed off (see above). For the hardened gamer...not sure. I'm not one of them.

    Oh, and Ubuntu is damn swift on the crappy we P4 lappy I am using. Joy!

  10. The Fuzzy Wotnot

    Love the Penguin, however...

    I use it for work and play at home, fantastic it is too. At the end of the day, if you have kids or anyone not entirely tech savvy, the box is just going to be a glorified browser, mailbox and office suite, which is fine for most people, my folks included, but when granny buys little Johnny the latest DX10 game and it won't even install, there will be tears before bed time!

    This has to be stressed by the vendors. When we say it's an "MS Alternative" we really mean it! It will not, with very few exceptions, be able to run any MS compatible software.

  11. N

    What people want is choice

    & its about time that we all sought less reliance on Microsoft & encourage competition

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Yuck, no thanks

    "Innovating on top of vista" == "Cramming in even more of those godawful shitty buggy destabilising crapplets than every HP box already comes completely infested by out of the box". I'll stick with my W2k upgrade, ta very much.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Dead Vulture

    Stop Bad-mouthing Mud!!

    Mud has many uses, you can use it to make huts in Africa, hippos use it to stop sun burn and vain women spread it on their faces to reduce wrinkles.

    The only thing Vista can do is make your PC unusable, hardly a useful skill, is it??

    Please get a grip or I will cancel my subscription!!

    Oh !! sorry; that last bit is for my regular letters to Private Eye.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Horns

    OSX x86

    Why doesn't HP go after Apple and just license OS X x86?


    OTOH, why don't other tier 1 player(s) do the same w/ OS X x86?

    Looks like it's starting to happen anyways ala -

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Is HP funding a huge R&D team to go off and create an operating system

    you mean like HP-UX?

  16. twat


    I've got a good name for Dell's new Linux, Delux. Do you think I should patent the name and sell it to them?

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