• United States

Xandros and DVDs

Jun 30, 20042 mins
Data Center

My son brought home the Dell Inspiron 1100 notebook computer that prompted the multiple columns on rebate issues. Unfortunately, being a college student who cares little about security but tempted with a broadband connection in his dorm room, his computer carried more parasites, spyware, worms, viruses, and other malware I couldn’t rescue the operating system (Windows XP Professional). With his permission, I reformatted the disk to clean the garbage out.

As an experiment, and a way to keep Alex from suffering so many viruses etc in the future, I installed Xandros 2.0 Business Edition software. Alex uses three programs: browser, Microsoft PowerPoint (for distributed class notes), and the DVD player.

Xandros 2.0 worked great, installed easily, and StarOffice software handled the PowerPoint files with ease. So why did I have to delete the Xandros operating system and put Windows XP back on? Because the copyright cartel has blocked DVD decryption software from Linux operating systems unless they pay a large license fee.

If Alex had only a CD-ROM player and burner, he would be fine. Xandros handled the audio files he likes with no problem. But the inability to play commercial DVDs stopped the experiment.

Personally, I feel the powers in Hollywood and other places blocking users from playing their own DVDs on Linux machines and other devices is short sighted and insulting. Alex buys his own DVDs, yet he can’t play them on his own computer unless he pays an extra fee (Xandros offers a DVD decoder for an extra fee, as do other Linux vendors, while Microsoft XP Pro includes the decoder).

How many times should a customer have to pay to watch his own DVD?