The Palo Alto, Calif.-based company plans to tout the Asian Linux machines Tuesday, the same day that the first
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HP's desktop models, the MandrakeSoft's version of Linux., were announced--barely--last week. In that news release, HP avoided touting the Linux option, saying that the systems were available with Microsoft Windows "or alternative operating systems." In interviews, though, HP said the models came with
IBM, one of the loudest Linux backers when it comes to high-powered server computers, is beginning to. Sun Microsystems is the loudest desktop Linux backer, though the company doesn't sell the actual PCs on which its Java Desktop System product runs.
However, HP has something IBM and Sun lack: It sells more PCs than any other company. HP's Linux PCs indicate the company's judgment that the open-source operating system is a serious enough business prospect to stand alongside Windows, which dominates the market.
The new Asian machines are available immediately in Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and Vietnam, HP said.
Although Turbolinux was a prominent member of the, it sold only server products from the alliance. And though Turbolinux will continue working with for its higher-end products, "the greatest majority of our sales came from, and still come from, our existing Turbolinux-based products," spokesman Michael Jennings said.