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How to give Linux a try

Oct 20, 2009, 19:32 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols)

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"It used to be that if you wanted to try desktop Linux, you had to be a confident power-user and make permanent changes to your PC or have another computer. Those days are long gone. Today, you have four different, easy ways to take Linux for a spin.

"1) Hidden Built-in Linux
If you have a new PC, you may already have Linux installed on your computer. Does your PC have an instant-on setting that lets you look at the Web and check e-mail without actually booting up? If it does, congratulations, you already have Linux.

"The exact name may vary, and it probably won't even give a hint that you're running Linux, but that's indeed the case. For example, newer computers from ASUS, Lenovo, HP, LG, and Sony all come with DeviceVM's Splashtop Instant-On Desktop, which is a lightweight desktop Linux.

"Splashtop's not the only Linux already hiding in plain-sight on new Windows PCs. The high-end Dell Latitude Z includes a mini-motherboard just to run its instant-on Linux, a custom version ofopenSUSE"

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