[svlug] Dell expanding its LInux business, again

Don Marti dmarti at zgp.org
Sat Jan 26 07:37:55 PST 2008

begin Lisa quotation of Sat, Jan 26, 2008 at 07:03:37AM -0800:

> > http://digg.com/linux_unix/Ubuntu_7_10_on_the_Gorgeous_DELL_XPS_M1330
> >
> That's awesome news.  I, in fact, just had to do a LOT of searching to 
> find the right drivers to put XP on a XPS M1330.  They come, in the US 
> anyhow, with Vista ONLY and one of our marketing people bought one of 
> those and was complaining that his programs wouldn't install on it!
> I tried to insist on putting linux on it, but that didn't work. :-)

It's a huge hassle for Corporate IT to keep up with
laptops.  Problems include (this isn't all of them.)

 * hardware changes, and keeping the right Microsoft
   Windows drivers on the Windows images for laptops

 * Third-party security software: VPN, remotely-managed
   firewall, antivirus.

 * Laptop theft mitigation with data encryption utilities

What makes sense for Dell and other big laptop vendors
to do at this point is to offer a corporate IT edition
of the Windows laptop, with a lightweight Linux as
the base install, and Windows running as a guest OS.

 * Maintain one company Windows image for all
   desktops, since the virtual hardware is the same.

 * Do VPN, firewall, and antivirus scanning at the
   _host_ OS level.  Even if the guest is subverted,
   scanners and networking tools on the host will still
   be able to do their job.

 * Encrypt the entire virtual image at the host
   OS level.  (Qumranet is planning to offer this as
   a feature.)  One fewer third-party security add-on
   to buy, track, and manage.

Don Marti                    
dmarti at zgp.org

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