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[ale] M$ refund

Mike Harrison wrote:
 >> I asked the rare clueful sales droid, why can't I get the no-OS 
systems with 1gb of ram, his story was that their agreement with M$ only 
allows them to sell "lesser" machines without OS, that if the specs 
matched a system that they sell with WinXP or Vista, they had to sell it 
with WinXP or Vista.

 >> Sure seems to ring true with what I see on the market.

 >well, if they Dell page is any indication, I can see that.. When I 
clicked on the Inspiron link, the base system was :
Intel? Pentium? Dual Core T2370 (1.73GHz/533Mhz FSB/1MB, seems to me the 
lowest M$ configuration was the 2.0GHz..

But the opposite of 'lesser' machines requirement is used by Dell: you 
can only buy an Ubuntu Inspiron with 2 GB RAM and dual core minimum, 
instead of 1 GB RAM/single core Celeron for the lowest priced Win Vista 

Although different methods, it seems clear the main intent of M$ is to 
obscure the cost of the OS in the process: either you get it 
automatically in a system with better specs so you don't know how much 
extra the OS cost, or the cheapest Linux laptop looks more expensive 
than the cheapest Vista laptop due to lesser components on the latter.

Mike, when you purchased the additional RAM, could you compare that 
total price to the price of the same system with Vista and report to us 
the apparent cost of the OS?  With Dell, it looks like about $40, would 
be interested to compare.


Daniel Howard
President and CEO
Georgia Open Source Education Foundation