[Lvlug] Business Selling Computers
Wed, 05 Jun 2002 10:38:54 -0400
I have this "vague notion" of starting to sell computers with Linux
The objective is more to popularize Linux than to make money, but,
eventually, if not at first, I'd like to be reasonably compensated for
at least my time (if not the brilliance of this idea ;-).
My target market (I guess I should talk that way) would start with the
home, trying to provide very inexpensive Linux boxes preloaded with a
specific selection of Linux programs to appeal to home users. If we
found any bigger customers (schools, businesses, that would be all to
the good). We may need to think about ancillary services, like
training, support, "repairs", etc., but my first aim is a box that uses
something like KDE and the user rarely if ever needs to think about the
Perhaps (probably) Linux isn't quite there yet -- I doubt if I could
even sell one to my dad unless I find a good genealogy program that is
almost a workalike of whatever he uses now (can't remember the name
offhand) and can import the data he's already accumulated simply,
accurately, and completely.
I might aim at two or three standardized configurations, el cheapo, el
medium pricioso, and el mucho dinero. At the low end, I'd consider an
all in one motherboard (i.e., video, sound, NIC, modem -- hopefully
finding one with devices that work with Linux -- the last motherboard I
bought is all in one, but also has a slot for an AGP card -- I've only
made a half-hearted attempt to make sound work (it might even work -- I
don't have speakers plugged in), I never tried the NIC (it's TP, I use
Coax), and the modem, which I did not buy, plugs in to an LMR slot).
I'm running a 700 MHZ processor, 256 MB RAM (with space for at least
double that, and I think up to 2 GB). The motherboard, processor, and
case cost me around $140 at "computer show retail" at least six months
I'm wondering if anybody else has an interest in trying to make
something like this work? If I (we?) do it, I'd expect to do things
like incorporate and it would require an investment of time and money.
Potentially we could start small, making boxes and selling them at
computer shows, and we may never grow much beyond that.
If you're interested, write -- I may set up a WikiLearn page or Dann may
be willing to put up a separate mail list to support the effort.
We won't be ready to sell computers tomorrow -- there would be a lot of
decisions to make and things to do before we're ready.
And, as I said, it's something of a "vague notion" at this point in
time, and I could easily decide not to go any further than to talk about