Xandros

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Xandros
Xandros41OCE.png
Xandros Desktop 4.1 OCE
DeveloperXandros Incorporated
OS familyUnix-like
Working stateCurrent
Source modelFree and open source mixed with closed source
Latest release4.2 / July 26, 2007 (2007-07-26)
Kernel typeMonolithic Linux kernel
Default user interfaceKDE
LicenseGNU GPL with some proprietary software
Official websitewww.xandros.com

Xandros is both the name of a line of operating systems and Xandros Corporation, the company which creates them. Xandros Desktop is a Linux distribution. The name Xandros is derived from the X Window System and the Greek island of Andros.[1] Founded in May 2001 by Linux Global Partners,[2] the company is headquartered in New York City.

Their distributions are based on Corel Linux, a Debian-based distribution which was acquired along with the development team behind the product from Corel Corporation in August 2001 after Corel decided to leave the Linux distribution market.[3] Xandros is a founding member of the Desktop Linux Consortium and member of the Interop Vendor Alliance.[4]

In July 2007, Xandros bought Scalix, a Linux-based email and collaboration product, based on HP OpenMail.[5][6] In July 2008, Xandros acquired Linspire.

Products

Xandros makes products for both the consumer and business markets. While the distributions include many packages licensed as free software and open-source, Xandros is criticized for inclusion of proprietary software developed in-house by the Xandros Corporation.[7]

Commercial editions

Xandros Desktop Home Edition

This edition comes with a 30-day trial of Crossover Office. It also includes an "Applications CD" which includes extra programs which can be installed via Xandros Networks. As opposed to Home Edition Premium, the Home Edition does not include the photo manager, music manager, security suite, wireless profiles, or the ability to write to NTFS partitions.

Xandros Desktop Home Edition Premium

This edition comes with a full version of Crossover Office Standard Edition, and a second CD (the "Applications CD") which comes with extra applications which can be installed via Xandros Networks. Despite its name, Xandros Desktop Home Edition Premium does not include a Xandros Networks Premium Membership.

Xandros Corporation offers a 30-day trial version of Xandros Home Edition Premium as a free download for evaluation purposes.

Xandros Desktop Professional

Formerly known as Xandros Desktop Business Edition, this edition is basically the same as Xandros Desktop Home Edition Premium, but it includes the ability to authenticate to Windows PDC and Active Directory Domains, use PPTP VPN to connect remotely to the office, and use broadband wireless connectivity with 3G, GSM and UMTS support. Xandros Desktop Professional was officially released on 28 November 2006.

As with Home Edition Premium, Xandros Corporation also offers a 30-day trial version of Xandros Professional.

Presto

Introduced in 2009, Presto is a lightweight "instant-on" operating system which uses the lightweight Xfce 4.6 desktop environment. It is installed inside of Microsoft Windows, with Windows XP as the earliest supported version; Windows 2000 is not supported. It also has access to an "application store" based on CNR, which was acquired through Xandros' acquisition of Linspire in mid-2008.

Xandros Moblin

In 2009, Xandros announced that it will develop a new netbook operating system based on Moblin v2.[8]

Server systems

Xandros Desktop Management Server (xDMS) is available. It easily sets up repositories as it deploys customized Xandros Desktop configurations across a large organization.[citation needed]

Xandros Server is designed to run on servers. It was officially launched at the 2006 LinuxWorld Conference and Expo in Toronto, on 25 April 2006, and officially released for purchase at the Xandros website on 1 May 2006, at a MSRP of USD 450. Xandros Server 2.0 has been released in May 2007.[9]

Criticism

Xandros has been often criticized by the Linux community in various reviews and websites, for long release cycles and not having a clear release cycle or schedule. The current stable release of Xandros was in 2007 and Xandros's Freespire OS hasn't been updated since they acquired it.

Xandros 4.0 was criticized for the addition of a product activation feature similar to the one found in Windows XP. However, unlike the Windows XP product activation code, which is required in order to use Windows XP after 30 days, the Xandros product activation code was used to authorize a copy of Xandros to download programs and updates from Xandros Networks, Xandros' proprietary APT-based download tool similar to Linspire's CNR. When the OS is first installed, Xandros Networks is disabled; it has to be enabled by using the product activation code. Users must contact Xandros Support for further activation codes after they pass a 10 activation limit. After much criticism over the product activation feature, Xandros released the Service Pack 1 update to Xandros 4.0 which did away with it; Version 4.1 of Xandros, which has the Service Pack 1 update integrated into the OS, does not have product activation.[10]

Discontinued editions

Xandros Open Circulation Edition (OCE) was a freely redistributable edition for non-commercial use, with a limited set of additional software. Soon after the 4.0 version was released as a DVD shrinkwrapped with Linux magazines, the torrent was pulled from Xandros' servers and all references to OCE removed from the Xandros website without explanation. Previous versions of Xandros OCE were generally released about 4 months after the release of the commercial versions.[11]

However, despite not being available officially, a link to download Xandros 4.1 OCE was later posted within Xandros' User Support forums.[12]

Xandros Desktop OS Standard Edition was basically the same as the Open Circulation Edition, but it included full-speed CD/DVD burning. This product has been replaced by Home Edition.

Xandros Desktop OS Deluxe Edition included an "applications CD" which included extra programs which could be installed via Xandros Networks. This product has been replaced by Home Edition Premium.

Xandros Desktop OS Surfside Edition was basically the same as Xandros Desktop OS Standard Edition, however the Surfside Edition also included a Plantronics USB headset and 120 minutes of SkypeOut service.

Look and feel

Xandros 4.1 OCE (KDE) running Xandros File Manager, Xandros Networks, Control Centre and the Xandros Launch Menu

The Xandros GUI uses a modified version of KDE, which includes replacing Konqueror with its own proprietary file manager called Xandros File Manager. It also uses a package manager known as Xandros Networks, which handles installation of software. Installation of Xandros is done by a wizard that asks questions about partitioning and the administrator (root) password.

It is possible to install and use the GNOME and Xfce desktop environments on Xandros.

Collaboration with Microsoft

In June 2007, a "broad collaboration agreement" between Xandros and Microsoft was announced.[13] The agreement included "patent covenants [to not sue] Xandros customers", similar to the agreement that Microsoft reached with Novell. To date, there has been no real evidence that any patent infringement has occurred. Microsoft appears unwilling to specify which patents it alleges to have been infringed.

ASUS Eee PC

In a collaboration of ASUS hardware and the Xandros operating system, the first "netbook" came into being. The ASUS Eee PC came with Xandros installed as well as Windows XP. The installed version of Xandros is tab based, built from scratch using Xlib and the Qt 4.5 toolkit. The full desktop version (or "Advanced Mode") may be installed—but not always easily—through a set of administrative command prompts.[14] The full desktop version features a KDE 3 desktop with a few modifications performed by Xandros. This desktop mode also provides access to the Synaptic Package Manager which can be used to update and manage the Eee PC's software.[15][16]

Xandros is porting its Eee PC Linux distribution to 2 ARM processor-based (Freescale i.MX515 & the Qualcomm Snapdragon CPU) platforms for netbooks & other mobile devices.[17]

References

  1. ^ Andrew (2005-01-18). "Xandros is an acronym?". Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  2. ^ "Xandros Announces Strategic Licensing Agreement with Corel Corporation". Xandros. 2001-08-21. Retrieved 2008-04-29.
  3. ^ "Xandros Corporate Background". Xandros. Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  4. ^ http://interopvendoralliance.org/Directory.aspx
  5. ^ http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/11/04/open_xchange_funding/
  6. ^ "Scalix Bought by Xandros". Retrieved 2007-07-18.
  7. ^ UserFriendly Strip Comments
  8. ^ "Xandros Creates Enhanced User Experience for Netbook Users with Moblin V2".
  9. ^ "Xandros Releases Xandros Server Standard Edition 2, Offering Enterprise-Grade Features to Windows-Centric SMBs". Xandros. 2007-05-08. Retrieved 2008-04-29.
  10. ^ BoyLinux (2006-11-27). "Xandros Desktop 4.0 Service Pack 1". Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  11. ^ BoyLinux (2006-12-20). "OCE 4 - Prerelease information". Retrieved 2007-06-05.
  12. ^ forums.xandros.com (2007-04-21). "I love Xandros 4 OCE". Retrieved 2008-02-02.
  13. ^ "Microsoft, Xandros Broad Collaboration Agreement Extends Bridge Between Commercial Open Source and Microsoft Software" (Press release). Microsoft. 2007-06-04. Retrieved 2007-06-04.
  14. ^ http://wiki.eeeuser.com/howto:getkde
  15. ^ "How Linux software installation works".
  16. ^ "Xandros full KDE desktop on EeePC".(screenshot of the full desktop version of Xandros running on the EEE PC)
  17. ^ Xandros Linux OS available for ARM devices

External links