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ASUS announced that their new EEE 900 PC sporting Windows XP (Vista won't run on it) will cost $50 AUD less than its Linux counterpart. I am no economist but I can figure out quickly that a computer that comes with Windows XP Home and Microsoft Works pre-installed is going to be more expensive than a computer with a free operating system.

The Linux EEE does come with a larger hard drive (20GB) than the Windows XP version (12GB) but does that offer an explanation of the higher price? If you figure that the larger drive boosts the cost $50 for the Linux PC and the OS boosts it $100 for the Windows version, then they would cost the same. Methinks there's something rotten in the State of Washington.

It would make more sense to sell the Windows EEE at a higher price if the assumption is that the Windows version will sell better than the Linux one. Another possibility is to sell the unit without an OS and let the buyer decide for themselves.

Actions like these not only call motives into question but also raises the question "How afraid of Linux is Microsoft?" I think Microsoft should allay any fears of being pushed into bankruptcy by Linux anytime soon since humans seem to have an innate fear of that which is free or open.

I am not sure what the prices for the new EEE PC 900 are for North America but for now Australians will pay more for freedom. "Freedom comes at a price." No truer words were ever spoken.

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Last Post by jbennet
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The Linux EEE does come with a larger hard drive (20GB) than the Windows XP version (12GB) but does that offer an explanation of the higher price?

yes as its a solid state drive which are very expensive per gig

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And Asus probably expects to have to provide more support on those Linux boxes as well compared to the Windows boxes.

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Yet in the UK we are told the smaller size, and therefore cheaper, solid state HD in the Windows version is to compensate for the extra cost of the Windows Licence. Over here the two versions cost the same, see here: http://www.eee-900.co.uk/.

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Given the benefit of the doubt maybe the reason why the eee pc with windows is cheaper is because the solid state HD is more expensive than the windows software, or Microsoft simply wants to get more audience ans uses ASUS to promote its product.

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Instead of paying for the Windows XP license, buyers are given an extra 8gb's of SSD real estate. Users can easily use an XP disc to upgrade their machine to XP if they're not happy with the Linux OS. The procedure is detailed in the manual which comes with the laptop and can be downloaded from the Asus website.

Two reasons why the Linux option is better...

The Linux OS has been carefully customised for Eee PC users providing easy access to suitable software for performing web, productivity and educational tasks. Using an application called Wine (must be downloaded), one can run Windows applications on Linux.

Windows XP writes often to the disc, while Linux is a much more controlled OS with fewer writes and therefore the SSD drive will last a lot longer. With Linux there isn't much to worry about, but XP does introduce the longevity issue with regard to the SSD.

Regardless of the price difference, the Linux offering is much more attractive.

PS.
You wrote ... "If you figure that the larger drive boosts the cost $50 for the Linux PC"
...and your source for this figure of $50 is?

PSS.
You wrote ... "Another possibility is to sell the unit without an OS and let the buyer decide for themselves."
...Right. Maybe they should leave out the screen, keyboard and smartpad and let the buyers decide those as well.

PSSS.
You wrote ... "How afraid of Linux is Microsoft?"
...This isn't an issue. Microsoft has incredible leverage over manufacturers and can reduce discounts if they start to favour Linux or any other OS. This is what monopolies do. Until Microsoft is in the 35% of market share region, the whole talk of fearing other OS's is a bit ludicrous. Their current position means they should retain leverage over the priority of their OS, unless they do something stupid like release Vista Two.

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