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Linux available on ThinkPad T61 and R61

Several months after the initial announcement, Lenovo releases details on the models that will come pre-loaded with Linux.

Erica Ogg Former Staff writer, CNET News
Erica Ogg is a CNET News reporter who covers Apple, HP, Dell, and other PC makers, as well as the consumer electronics industry. She's also one of the hosts of CNET News' Daily Podcast. In her non-work life, she's a history geek, a loyal Dodgers fan, and a mac-and-cheese connoisseur.
Erica Ogg

In August, Lenovo announced that Suse Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 would be available on ThinkPads in the fourth quarter of 2007. Though that didn't happen, Lenovo finally released details Tuesday.

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Novell SLED 10 will be available on the ThinkPad T61 and ThinkPad R61 with Intel Centrino processors. Operating system features include the Firefox Web browser, RealPlayer, Macromedia Flash Player, OpenOffice, and more.

Lenovo says it will provide customer support for the hardware and the operating system, while Novell will be responsible for updates. The lowest-end model will be $949, and both models are available beginning Tuesday.

Next month ThinkPads with Penryn chipsets from Intel will start shipping with Linux as well.

Linux has chiefly been popular on servers and more recently has made inroads in embedded computing devices such as phones, but it's never made much headway on desktop and laptop PCs. Nevertheless, Suse has long championed Linux on PCs, and Novell took up the mantle when it acquired the Linux seller four years ago.

CNET News.com's Stephen Shankland contributed to this report.