Should Linux worry about Apple using Intel?

By Derek Sooman on June 7, 2005, 10:20 AM
What does Apple's recent move to Intel CPUs mean for Linux? What I mean to say is, should the Linux community be worried that Apple will be able to provide a Unix-like OS thatís great for a lot of tasks and that runs on Intel processors? Well, as it turns out, probably not really.

Itís true that Apple's desktop is ahead of Linux's desktop, and yes it is also true that Apple is developing a presence in the desktop and server market (where Linux has its strength.) But Apple seems poised to continue its exclusionary stance - that is, Apple's Mac OS X will only run on Apple hardware, whether its Intel CPU based or not, and Apple computers will still continue to carry a price premium. If Apple planned to allow users to run Mac OS X on any x86 machines, maybe Linux would be right to be scared. But it seems unlikely and indeed even impossible that Mac OS X will run on anything other than an Apple machine. Linux, on the other hand, runs on any old i386 hardware.

From this vantage point, it looks like the net effect for Apple is going to be break-even at best. I donít think Appleís move spells doom for Linux on the desktop, or poses a serious threat to Linux in the server market, and it certainly doesnít mean that Apple is poised to defeat Microsoft on its home turf.

User Comments: 2

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dingletec said:
Personally, I'm looking forward to using Apple's hardware with whichever distro I decide is my favorite this week. While I use Linux on current PPCs, there just isn't the variety available as on Intel/AMD based systems. I think Apple will definitely benefit from it, but anyone who thinks Linux is going to be hurt by any one company doesn't understand how the Linux community works. For people who use Linux, there is no "competition". Once they become experienced enough, they move away from commercial Linux. How do you track free Linux? There is no limit to it's use, the number of copies you can make, the number of machines you can install it on, etc. For me personally, and at my company, Linux usage continues to grow. Especially in places where there is a need, but no budget.
Phantasm66 said:
What is Linux like on a Mac, anyone know? Has anyone tried Yellow Dog? [url][/url]
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