Upgrade price wars: Vista vs. Linux

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OS

It's 2007, and you want to upgrade all your PCs' operating systems after the infamous March 2007 XP Meltdown. You know, the virus attack that actually melted computers running XP, but couldn't touch machines running any other OS? Never heard of it? Well, play along with me, OK?

Let's say that you have a small office. Let's also presume that you've been running Windows XP Professional on decently powerful machines.

Just, for argument's sake, let's pretend that you're using PCs with 2.8 GHz Pentium IV, 512 MB of RAM, and an Ultra ATA/100, 7200 RPM, 60 GB hard drive and built-in Intel GMA (graphics media accelerator) 950 graphics. That's pretty darn good for a business machine.

The question you face on March 1, 2007 is, with a minimal budget for an upgrade, what do you do? Do you put on Vista or a Linux that comes with business support like SLED (SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop) 10.

Now, if you had a Linux expert on staff, you might have had Ubuntu, Freespire, or Xandros on your short list. But, you don't. You need an OS supplier that can hold your hand both during and after the upgrade. Since Red Hat doesn't do much with the desktop, that pretty much means Novell/SUSE, for now.

So, the first question is: can your boxes run SLED 10? The answer, since I do it every day on a no-name box with exactly those components, is yes, you sure can.

Can you run Vista? Well... that's another question, isn't it?

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