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Xandros prepares Linux desktop beta

Corel's Linux operating system for desktop PCs is set to make a comeback in April.

Mike Bego, chief executive of Xandros, has announced preparations for the launch of a Linux desktop operating system based on Corel technology.

The first release of of Xandros Desktop 1.0 will be on show at the LinuxWorld Conference in New York, which begins on 29 January.

Xandros licensed Corel's Linux technology in August is now preparing to bring its work out of the research lab. However, it is entering a difficult market, said Dan Kusnetzky, an analyst with IDC.

"The desktop operating system market is dominated by Microsoft. In 1999 Windows accounted for 88% share of shipments. By 2000 it held 92% share. In 2001, its share will have risen even more," Kusnetzky said. "You'd have to do something very interesting to get people to be interested in using a new platform."

In addition to the desktop operating system, Xandros will offer office productivity applications, Internet access services and other applications for Xandros Desktop. The company also plans to offer technical consulting services and Linux server software later in the year.

The company has also licensed its core technology to Lindows.com., a Linux desktop startup. Lindows is packaging Xandros' distribution of the operating system with a technology that enables applications developed for Microsoft Windows to run on Linux.

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