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Microsoft move triggers Linux promotion

Ximian, a small Boston company pushing use of the Linux operating system on ordinary desktop computers, is offering discounts to try to woo Microsoft customers dissatisfied with a more expensive licensing plan from the software titan. As of May, about two-thirds of Microsoft's customers haven't signed up for a program to offer a subscription-like product update service. The sign-up deadline is July 31. Ximian is offering discounts of up to 25 percent on software such as its Evolution for checking e-mail, its Connector software for integrating Evolution with Microsoft Exchange e-mail systems, and Sun Microsystems' StarOffice 6 suite of programs for tasks such as word processing. Many of these products are bundled with product support and online updates in a package called Ximian Desktop Professional Edition, which runs on versions of Linux from Red Hat, SuSE and MandrakeSoft.

Ximian, a small Boston company pushing use of the Linux operating system on ordinary desktop computers, is offering discounts to try to woo Microsoft customers dissatisfied with a more expensive licensing plan from the software titan. As of May, about two-thirds of Microsoft's customers haven't signed up for a program to offer a subscription-like product update service. The sign-up deadline is July 31.

Ximian is offering discounts of up to 25 percent on software such as its Evolution for checking e-mail, its Connector software for integrating Evolution with Microsoft Exchange e-mail systems, and Sun Microsystems' StarOffice 6 suite of programs for tasks such as word processing. Many of these products are bundled with product support and online updates in a package called Ximian Desktop Professional Edition, which runs on versions of Linux from Red Hat, SuSE and MandrakeSoft.