Instant-on Linux on Front of NYT

**In Age of Impatience, Cutting PC Start Time **](

Until Microsoft comes up with a way to greatly shorten the time it takes to load Windows, PC makers are speeding up boot times using programs that bypass Windows. The systems vary technically, but they all rely on a version of an operating system called Linux that gives users quick access to Web browsing and other basic functions of their computer. In some cases, Windows never boots, while in others, Windows starts in the background.

What I find encouraging about this, to offer such a feature (using an embedded Linux to provide the “instant-on”) , is that manufacturers will need to ensure that some of their PC’s hardware is compatible with Linux. ie they will be more motivated to ensure their PC’s ethernet device, the motherboard, the power-management, the SATA drive controller (or other controller), and other hardware in their PCs (such as the PC’s sound (speakers, headphones, integrated mic, integrated webcam), and maybe many of their special “function keys” ) work with Linux.

IMHO a VERY BIG advantage that Windows has had is that it has always been provided as OEM, which means the manufacturers often sort the problems with MS-Windows, before they release the PC hardware for sale. Well now we are looking at hardware being released with some sort of embedded Linux.

Of course there are no guarantees, but this is encouraging to me, as it suggests regular Linux distributions may have a higher probability of working on such PCs, without major problems.

That’s a good point. I hadn’t thought of that angle. There’s a also the Dvorak Angle:

This development is important, since 90 percent of the time all a user wants to do is surf the Web. Often when leaving for a trip, I forget to check the weather. To do so, I would have to start up my computer, wait forever for it to boot, then go online. This way, I just flip it on, and boom—I get a browser and the info and I’m done.
It’s an extremely subversive ploy for a number of reasons. First of all, it gets people used to Linux, gives them a pain-free experience, and provides quick rewards. Second, it shows users that—most of the time—this is all they need. And finally, it makes Windows look like a subsystem not much different from a program that you run under Windows.

This is Trojan Horse Linux.

I’m not familiar with “trojan horse linux”.

Maybe Trojan wasn’t the best description to use given it’s malware connotations. I just meant it’s a sneaky way by which Linux gets onto a lot of computers and used by a lot of people who think they are just buying a Windows box.