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Business vs Community: Xandros and PCLinuxOS compared

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PCLinuxOS is a Mandriva-based LiveCD, which we can either use as a demo CD or install on a hard disk. This distribution is gaining a lot of popularity and on Distrowatch it’s currently rated at high third place. For the purpose of this review, PCLinuxOS 2007 has been used. The ISO image can be downloaded (or bought) from the official PCLinuxOS website.

Xandros is a commercial distribution targeted at business. For free we can only download a 30-day trial version. If you want a full version you have to pay (as of today: $39.99 for home, $79.99 for premium and $99.99 for professional edition). There is a chance that one of the previous versions of Xandros is available as a bonus to one of you local IT magazines (like Linux Magazine). We have used Xandros Desktop Professional 4.1 in this review.


PCLinuxOS is a LiveCD so we can use it as a live-demo before installing to see if we like it and whether it support our hardware properly. 2007 release contains KDE 3.5.6 (with most of the KDE applications) and few extra programs like or Firefox.

Xandros 4.1 in the desktop edition contains KDE 3.4.2, but to see it we have to install it (no Live-CD available). The installer is a simple graphical one similar to Anaconda (Fedora) but way faster and simpler. Beside KDE we also get some external packages like Evolution for e-mail.

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