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Onboard Linux marks new Era in World of Tech

With mainstream Operating Systems (lilke Windows Vista) increasingly putting on weight and boot times, it is refreshing to see that some are heading the opposite way.

Hardware giant Asustek (opens in new tab) is partnering with a Californian-based Startup called DeviceVM (opens in new tab) to produce an instant-on Linux desktop feature with a nice moniker - Express Gate.

This feature allows you to choose between jumping into the Windows environment or chose a lightweight desktop environment within seconds.

While lightweight Operating systems have been around for a long time, it is the first time that a Tier-1 hardware manufacturer is integrating this feature in one of its products (namely motherboards (opens in new tab)).

What that means for users is that the grip that Microsoft and Windows had on the desktop seems to be waning, at least in the consumer market, which augurs of increased competition and hopefully more choice and cheaper prices.

Intriguingly, Asus is just about to release its brand new laptop, which, surprise, surprise, is Linux-powered.

Another interesting point is that Splashtop (opens in new tab), the company behind DeviceVM, is backed by several major PC manufacturers including the PAGE consortium (Acer/Gateway/eMachines/Packard Bell), Intel, Lenovo, Mitac, Foxconn, Quanta and Compal.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at ITProPortal.com where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.