What is going on Dell?

I have to admit I’m kinda confused by Dell’s Ubuntu support, their USA website is currently selling four computers under the Ubuntu page. One Moblin Remix Mini 10v and three with 9.10, although I’ve only read a couple of reviews about the Moblin remix the consensus is that it’s not quite as good as the Netbook remix yet.

Now onto their EU sites which still have Ubuntu pages and pages which Ubuntu is still advertising, but for which they do not actually sell any Ubuntu computers at all, it just redirects you to buy windows. They’ve stopped selling and they’re sale staff are certain they’ll never sell them again. Should I be pleased that my American friends can enjoy a limited set of Ubuntu computers or annoyed that the UK is showing it’s self to be a technology basket case again?

Dell, I shan’t be referring anyone to buy from you until you pick up your game and start producing products which can match those of other suppliers and make them available in important locations. This also reflects badly on Canonical of course who gets licensing revenue from every Dell with Ubuntu sale, but not from any System76 sales, so why do people in the UK (where Canonical is based) need to buy from system76?

It’s also bad that their dell partner webpage is so out of date, don’t Dell tell Canonical when they stop selling machines in what countries? At least the Canadian ubuntu page on the dell side has been removed, we should at least make sure it’s removed on the ubuntu side too.

13 thoughts on “What is going on Dell?

  1. Hi, I completely agree with your post. Early in the afternoon, in fact, I posted a comment on the page of the infamous Bug #1 (https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+bug/1/comments/1216) regarding Dell business practice in relation to Ubuntu. The whole deal truly disappointed me: although economically convenient, I felt sort of cheated. The way they advertise products on one page is misleading when compared to the following page where the actual product is presented. And giving you no chance of customising your machine makes you feel defeated, if your original quest was a computer with Ubuntu pre-installed – or with no Window$ on it anyway!

    > so why do people in the UK (where Canonical is based) need to buy from system76?

    To be honest, before choosing Dell, I visited both ZaReason and System76. I wanted to shop from the latter, but, as I found out from their shipping information, they “only ship within the United States and Canada”. Which was a real pity, because I now somewhat regret having been forced to buy from Dell.

  2. I can’t figure out a way to buy dell notebooks with ubuntu pre-installed on their brazilian webpage. This should be as easy as picking up my favorite os instead of win seven. Luckily there’s been successful reports on people getting refunds after their win 7 notebooks coming pre-installed with the OS they won’t use. Lets just see what future brings…

  3. It’s kind of strange on the German dell site. Searching for “Ubuntu”, you can see several computers with Ubuntu listed as one choice of OS, but when you visit these computers on their “customize” page, Ubuntu is gone in most of the choices (but not all, you can still buy 2 netbooks with 9.10).
    But the search also shows the “Dell Ubuntu” page. If you visit this site, there is a button: “Buy dell computers with Ubuntu”. If you click this button, you are sent to a page, where you can buy all the dell computers, but not a single one with Ubuntu on it (although, as I said, they do sell two netbooks with Ubuntu). So this is really strange, but dell is still the only manufacturer to ship Ubuntu preinstalled in Germany…

  4. Totally agree. I was looking at their Zino HD line the other day, thinking it would make a nice little box to replace my 6 year-old desktop machine, but there were no choices, just Windows 7. Not even a “no OS” option 🙁

  5. i recommend linuxemporium and dnuk in the UK. i have bought from each of them. both are friendly and helpful.

    if there is enough demand for things, people will sell them.

  6. “Now onto their EU sites which still have Ubuntu pages and pages which Ubuntu is still advertising, but for which they do not actually sell any Ubuntu computers at all, it just redirects you to buy windows.”

    http://www.groklaw.net/articlebasic.php?story=20100131172023435
    “Current MICROSOFT-HP Emerging Markets efforts:

    * South East Asia. HP discontinued its Linux SKUs beginning on November 18th. This is based on joint marketing effort that spans six months to promote low cost Windows SKU’s with $30 extra channel incentives that focus on white box resellers. The goal is to enable the whitebox resellers to offer HP branded PCs instead of naked PCs.”

    “I visited both ZaReason and System76. I wanted to shop from the latter, but, as I found out from their shipping information, they “only ship within the United States and Canada”. Which was a real pity, because I now somewhat regret having been forced to buy from Dell.”

    System76 ships us/canada only, but ZaReason ships to a fairly large number of international locations: http://zareason.com/shop/pages.php?pageid=17

    HTH.

  7. Rafael says:
    > Luckily there’s been successful reports on people getting refunds after their win 7 notebooks coming pre-installed with the OS they won’t use.

    I didn’t think this was really an option, I’ll see if I can get a refund as well, thanks!

    Joseph says:
    > System76 ships us/canada only, but ZaReason ships to a fairly large number of international locations:

    I know, I just wasn’t interested. I found their prices too high for the hardware they sell, and although I would have loved to support them for their efforts to ship with Ubuntu pre-installed, my pockets and I were in disagreement.

  8. As if this all weren’t enough, Dell has the gall to sell Ubuntu notebooks with Broadcom wireless chipsets! Of course, they don’t use the Broadcom name; instead they call it “Dell Wireless”. I would love to know why Dell has such a hard-on for Broadcom that they cripple their Ubuntu machines with it and why Broadcom feels the need to be so secretive about their hardware. I have a sneaking suspicion that Microsoft is lurking behind the whole mess.

  9. Many Dell machines have been recently listed as certified against 10.04…which I assumes mean Dell paid money to Canonical for the hardware certification service. (as compared to “compatible”)
    http://webapps.ubuntu.com/certification/list/?release=10.04%20LTS

    Dell Laptops:
    Inspiron 1420
    Inspiron 1545
    Inspiron 6400
    Latitude 2100
    Mini 10v
    Vostro 1720
    Vostro 3300
    Vostro 3700

    Dell Desktops:
    Inspirion 580
    Optiplex 360

    Neither ZaReason nor System76 have any desktops or laptops listed as certified with 10.04 yet.

    Makes you wonder. How much is Canonical hardware certification really worth? If the Ubuntu userbase are happiest recommending OEM vendors who are avoiding the hardware certification process that Canonical offers…should any vendor bother spending money for the cert?

  10. “I know, I just wasn’t interested. I found their prices too high for the hardware they sell, and although I would have loved to support them for their efforts to ship with Ubuntu pre-installed, my pockets and I were in disagreement.”

    That wasn’t what you said.

    Regardless, you get what you pay for. If you pay for a Windows machine, you get a Windows machine. It’s nice if it runs Linux, but it’s not at all guaranteed. Plus, your money will be used to fund initiatives like the MSFT/HP one described in the Comes document (and linked above).

    Don’t buy Windows PCs unless there really is no other option. Unless you really just want Windows. This is perhaps where Apple does it right, although they inhibit your freedoms to do so.

  11. Joseph says:
    “‘I know, I just wasn’t interested. I found their prices too high for the hardware they sell, and although I would have loved to support them for their efforts to ship with Ubuntu pre-installed, my pockets and I were in disagreement.’
    That wasn’t what you said.”

    That is exactly what I said… in my second post! Perhaps you meant: “you didn’t overtly say THAT, in your first post”, which would be correct, but still would allow space for my second consideration. As a matter of fact, when I said: “before choosing Dell, I visited both ZaReason and System76. I wanted to shop from the latter, but, as I found out from their shipping information, they ‘only ship within the United States and Canada’. Which was a real pity, because I now somewhat regret having been forced to buy from Dell”, I pointed out I was interested in System76 offers, but not in ZaReason’s, meaning I found their deals worth the price as opposed to ZaReason’s, which in my statement had been ruled out, indeed. So, I didn’t say that, correct, but that was still implied, and made explicit in my second contribution.

    Joseph says:
    “Regardless, you get what you pay for. If you pay for a Windows machine, you get a Windows machine. It’s nice if it runs Linux, but it’s not at all guaranteed.!

    Your statement is again imprecise: I didn’t pay for a Windows machine, I paid for a machine which, incidentally, had Windows pre-installed. The same machine should be shipped with Ubuntu pre-installed, as it was clear when I entered ‘Ubuntu’ in Dell search-box, and the Inspiron mini 10 came out. But, unfortunately, they mislead purchasers, for when I clicked on the picture, the next page showed only the machine with Windows preinstalled. That is, I bought the machine for I chose that was the best deal, I couldn’t find a way to get rid of the OS imposed by the vendor. Which, again, is quite different from what you stated. Besides, I already knew Lucid worked on it, so in my case it was guaranteed, otherwise it wasn’t an option. Plus, as Jef Spaleta pointed out, the mini is certified against Lucid.

    Joseph says:
    “Don’t buy Windows PCs unless there really is no other option. Unless you really just want Windows. This is perhaps where Apple does it right, although they inhibit your freedoms to do so.”

    As I already wrote, for me there wasn’t really any other, for the reasons already explained. I didn’t want Windows, in fact I’m not using it. Still, the machine with Windows pre-installed represented a better deal, so I decided to put my ideals aside, and buy it nonetheless. It’s not my duty to educate vendors, or to solve Bug #1 all by myself. Granted I could have handed around € 200 more for a Teo to teach Dell a lesson, but how much difference would have that made? I still believe something rotten in Dell business practice, and that’s where things should be forced to change. As an individual with limited economic resources I trust my choice will not change the world, if I’m already forced by the system itself to make that specific choice in the first place.

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