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Should RedHat release a Desktop Linux distro aimed at the consumer?

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  • Should RedHat release a Desktop Linux distro aimed at the consumer?

    Should RedHat release a Desktop Linux distro aimed at the consumer?

    In 2008 Red Hat dropped plans, disclosed a year ealier, to develop a version of the Linux operating system for consumer PCs -- in part because of Microsoft's dominance over the market.

    "The desktop market suffers from having one dominant vendor, and some people still perceive that today's Linux desktops simply don't provide a practical alternative,"
    "Building a sustainable business around the Linux desktop is tough, and history is littered with example efforts that have either failed outright, are stalled, or are run as charities,"
    Around and before that time I believe attitudes were different. If you had asked me at the time if I would pay for a Linux distribution I would have laughed at the suggestion. Also many of the paid Linux varieties back then were doing nothing more than trying to make a Windows clone, this is not a great idea in my opinion if you are trying to be like windows why wouldn't consumers just get the real thing.

    Anyway, the attitude in the Linux community seems to have changed over the past 5 years. 5 years ago Linux users were thought of as a bunch of user who never wanted to touch their wallet. However, initiatives such as HumbleBundle and the many many crowd funding game projects have shown that Linux users are now wiling to pay and in most cases willing to pay more than Windows and OSX users to get their OS noticed. My own crowd funding Mesa campaign showed that Linux user are not only willing to support applications to run on Linux but also to support the advancement of core Linux desktop technologies such as Mesa:
    This change in attitude has also meant that finally Linux is starting to be seen as a viable platform to develop games for, paving the way for the introduction of Steam. With more Linux users shelling out cash via humble bundle and crowd funding more attention is being paid to their favourite OS which seems to be encouraging attitudes to change further and users willing to pay for even more things as they are seeming the affects its having.

    So my discussion topic is do people think it would be a good idea for RedHat to give the consumer market another shot?

    Despite (in my opinion) all the bad decisions Canonical have made over the past few years they still have the best worry free distro, its about time we had a real alternative.

    Update: Also I really like the idea of being able to submit bug reports that will acctually be looked at in a timely manner since support is paided for. Most Linux distros try their best but fail miserably due to lack of resources (including Canonical)
    Last edited by tarceri; 09-07-2013, 08:32 PM.

  • #2
    No, I don't think it'd make any sense to sell boxed copies or even online ISOs with support.

    However, if they could get local partners for pre-installations to whole schools and other institutions, with the usual centralized administration and other RH perks, that market could prove fruitful. Pre-installed boxes at Walmart still wouldn't sell.