Feeds

Linux on desktop is a diverse market - really

Move along, no monopoly here

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Don't expect hegemony from a single Linux vendor on the desktop comparable with Microsoft's Office, as rival frameworks and implementations tackle different markets.

That's according to Red Hat fellow Alan Cox, who said research indicates users are adopting KDE and Gnome to serve different scenarios. He added that business users are less interested in the technical aspects of their desktops than technology experts, and simply want something that's familiar, reliable and comes at a low cost.

Cox, speaking at LinuxWorld in London, said the slowly growing market for Linux desktops is largely dominated by Gnome and KDE. Evidence from different reports suggests KDE is more widely used in Europe and Gnome in the US.

"Everything else in the free software world gives you a package and the best [package or distribution] is used. The fact KDE and Gnome exists suggest they serve different groups of users," Cox told LinuxWorld. "KDE provides more configuration and control, and Gnome more ease of use while giving up that control."

He said it is unlikely that the leading Linux and open source distributors would co-operate on a single desktop offering until the market matures. "That will only happen at the point where there is no commercial differentiation in those tools," Cox predicted.

Cox noted that, with much debate over the desktop as the next platform for Linux, end-users are not interested in the technology debate that fuelled much of the development of KDE and Gnome. "What matters are the applications," Cox said.

Business users want a desktop that can be immediately used by those familiar with a Windows and Office interface, that provides centralized management, and that comes at a low purchase and management price.

Sticking points for desktop Linux, Cox said, are the ability for systems to scale beyond pilot projects that involve 2,000 and 5,000 machines, to provide file compatibility that is better than that provided by OpenOffice, that does away with the OpenOffice spreadsheet, and that provides a replacement to Microsoft Access.®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Nexus 7 fandroids tell of salty taste after sucking on Google's Lollipop
Web giant looking into why version 5.0 of Android is crippling older slabs
Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search
Microsoft system will be the default for browser in US until 2020
Be real, Apple: In-app goodie grab games AREN'T FREE – EU
Cupertino stands down after Euro legal threats
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Microsoft: Your Linux Docker containers are now OURS to command
New tool lets admins wrangle Linux apps from Windows
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management
How using vulnerability assessments to identify exploitable weaknesses and take corrective action can reduce the risk of hackers finding your site and attacking it.
Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile
Data demand and the rise of virtualization is challenging IT teams to deliver storage performance, scalability and capacity that can keep up, while maximizing efficiency.