I sure hope this article/blurb is telling the truth.
DirectX 10.0 Redistributable for Windows 2000/XP/2003/MCE
Microsoft DirectX is a group of technologies designed to make Windows-based computers an ideal platform for running and displaying applications rich in multimedia elements such as full-color graphics, video, 3D animation, and rich audio. DirectX 10.0 includes security and performance updates, along with many new features, which can be accessed by applications using the DirectX 10.0 APIs.
Until now DirectX 10 has only been available for our Windows Vista operating system. After major out cries from the windows gaming community we have finally dedicated a team to convert this Vista only solution into a version that can be installed on Windows XP SP2 based machines. This update will only work on Windows Genuine Advantage certified copies of Windows XP.
From some of what I've read, DX10 could theoretically be patched into XP. Beyond that, like the R600, Agena, etc, I'll believe it when I see it. In this case, I'll believe it when I see it from Microsoft itself.
I think that if 70% of Dell's customers actually requested Linux, the gamemakers would take notice in a heartbeat. Having owned a Dell in the past and still getting mailings from them, I read that they have offered Linux as a stock install for quite a while, mainly for business customers. At least in the past, there was no great rush to get Linux powered Dells.
I suspect that some of them have pirated copies of XP from work or from friends but don't want to make it obvious so they ask for Linux
Does Dell even offer an option like "no O/S at all"?
The last I know, Dell does offer a machine with no OS installed. These mainly go to businesses that already have multiple licences of their present OS, so the business just installs that instead of paying for a licence from Dell. Cyberpower does the same thing, and I've heard other companies will also deliver a computer without an OS. Of course, when that happens, you can't call them for help when something goes wrong with your install.
I doubt they would include that offer, they make money off the OS, and other companies pay dell and hp etc to put trials of their software on their computers preloaded, so they make money off the preinstalled os in more than one way, making it unlikely they would unless the price difference was like $5
Speaking of which, dell has decided to preinstall linux on some of their product lines, I seriously wonder if they want to save money, or if 70% of their consumers actually requested linux
When Michael Dell reclaimed the place of CEO at Dell, one of the things he did was to open up a customer feedback website that invited those interested to openly make suggestions for what they'd like to see from Dell. Pre-installed (and most importantly, supported) Linux for non-business customers was one of the ideas that got brought up, and it caught a lot of attention at the site.
Dell is going along with the idea, I belive, because the majority of computers they sold up to 30 Jan 2007 were sub-par as far as it comes to running Vista. A large number of ~$500 computers are sold from Dell, and Vista hardly shines on this hardware, so it would give the customer a bad experience and Dell would lose reputation. By offering the choice, people on strict budgets can have an OS that does what they need (they're not the gaming type anyway with those cheap machines).
I think it would have made just as much sense to continue to offer XP for the next couple of years until extreme-budget hardware catches up with Vista, but MS is pushing hard for Vista and is actively discouraging OEMs from selling XP (or maybe it's actively encouraging them to be exclusively Vista).
Anyway, I hope that choice grows in the marketplace. That's always a good thing. So... is Linux the new AMD? Heh, I think we've hijacked this thread!