Wal-Mart's $199 Linux PC Back In Stock - InformationWeek

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11/20/2007
01:16 PM
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Wal-Mart's $199 Linux PC Back In Stock

The gPC is one of the first Linux-based desktop machines to be offered for sale by a major retailer.

Just in time for the holidays, Wal-Mart has re-stocked a Linux-based PC that sells for $199.

A check of the retailer's Web site Tuesday revealed that the Everex TC2502 Green gPC -- which had temporarily been sold out -- is now listed as "In Stock."

Linux fans and budget-minded PC shoppers could easily be fooled into thinking that the gPC is still unavailable, however. Walmart.com's main desktop page says the computer is "Coming Soon." But clicking on the gPC link reveals that it's in stock and available for purchase.

Wal-Mart introduced the gPC earlier this month but it quickly sold out online. It's "been one of the top performing desktop computers on Walmart.com," a spokesman for the company told InformationWeek last week.

The gPC is one of the first Linux-based desktop machines to be offered for sale by a major retailer. As such, it could be an indicator of open source software's potential for success in the consumer market.

The gPC comes pre-loaded with the gOS operating system -- a Linux variant -- and a 1.5 GHz processor manufactured by Intel clone maker Via Technologies. The rest of the specs include an 80 Gbyte hard drive and 512 Mbyte of DDR 2 memory.

There's no monitor included, but buyers get stereo speakers and a DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive.

As for software, the gPC comes with the free OpenOffice.org 2.2 productivity suite. The suite, which includes word processing, spreadsheet and presentation applications, recently won backing from IBM.

Everex is a Taiwanese-based PC maker that's looking to carve a niche for itself as a supplier of low-cost systems. A version of Everex's gPC that runs the basic edition of Microsoft's Windows Vista is on sale at Wal-Mart for $298.

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