You may remember a few weeks ago when I reviewed an alternative to PC computing; the Apple iMac. In similar contrast, there is also a range of Operating Systems for the PC that serve as an alternative to the Microsoft Windows Operating Systems, the most popular of which is generally considered to be Linux. This product is particularly popular with the Internet community as it is written in a way so that anybody can get hold of the code for free and modify it to correct any problems they may find which can then be put back into the public domain for others to use. This means that you can get hold of a stable and fast Operating System for very little or even no money.
Unfortunately however most Linux releases have not been able to establish themselves as a viable alternative for the majority of home users for a number of reasons. Primarily, the main two reasons for this is that Linux is generally less user friendly than Windows to use and that much of the existing Windows software does not run correctly under Linux.

All this may be about to change though after the release of ‘Lindows’ in a couple of months time. Currently under pre-testing, when the product is released it will retail for approximately £70 which compares to Windows XP which is currently sold at between £150 and £250 depending on whether you purchase the home or professional edition.
One of the most promising aspects of the Operating System is its ability to run existing Windows software; initially we will be only looking at mainstream applications such as Microsoft Office but eventually the team hope to have full compatibility with all existing applications. The interface it uses also looks very similar Windows so anybody with existing experience of using Microsofts’ program shouldn’t have any problems switching over to this new Operating System.

Now comes the downsides; very few people actually know anything about Lindows at the moment even though it is so close to being released. To make matters worse, even their own is somewhat vague, giving very little information on definite features or release dates. The CEO behind the project is Michael Robertson who recently sold the music website, a site which has been under a lot of pressure related to the online pirating of music. Some are sceptical that Lindows will actually succeed, although if it does live up to its promises then it may pose a considerable challenge to Microsofts monopoly on the desktop market. Unsurprisingly Microsoft are currently suing Lindows for the similarity between the names of the two products, stating that it could possibly mislead customers.

I look forward to the release of this product and hope that it may pose a viable alternative to Windows as healthy competition has been proven to encourage more aggressive pricing structures by both parties and faster development of existing products as we have recently witnessed between processor rivals Intel and AMD. I recommend that you continue to check the website for the latest information but be sure to read independent reviews when the product is finally released to avoid the possibility that it won’t be as good as promised.

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