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Re: Is Linux taking on a B.Gates approach to sales?

On Aug 20, Ed Burke wrote:
> I purchased Debian GNU Linux a year ago with a New Riders text.
> After a blitz of pseudo advertising in the local news papers.
> Pseudo ( referring to Linux articles that men- tioned the soon to be
> release Linux for $20.00 / $19.95.  I couldn't wait so I went
> searching for the software and found what I ended up with a Border's
> book store.  When I went to the web site a few months later I found
> that I didn't get one of the game CD's as well with my release.  So
> I enquired about that.  That is when I found I had a release by
> another source.  Should have been my first clue.  Company just
> popped in so to the point.

Any vendor is free to distribute Debian in any way they choose.  I
assume you're referring to the distinction between the New Riders CD
(official CD #1) and the "Boxed Set" produced by O'Reilly & VA Linux
(which included an unofficial CD and a demo copy of a game).

If you want to be guaranteed to receive the "true" Debian release, ask
for the Official CD by name.  Our vendors page has a listing of
manufacturers who provide those packages.

> I have worked through your support group for a couple months.  But
> when I mention scsi problem the help drops to 0.  So I went to the
> web site where I notice everything requires you sign in, WHY?

What web site is this?  Debian's official web site doesn't require
anyone to sign in to do anything.

> I found out that Debian 2.2 is supposed to resolve my problem.  But,
> is it?  Or is this the B.G. tactic I referred to, i.e. lead with
> faulty software so they have to keep comming back.

I'm afraid I don't follow: we don't charge for updates, so I don't see
how we'd benefit from this 'B.G. tactic'.  You can easily upgrade to
Debian 2.2 from your current release; see http://www.debian.org/ and
follow the "stable release" link.

> I notice Red Hat had promo that gave you/us an evaluation pkg.  for
> $5.00 and Caldera offerred a different deal with a different
> pre-release - name skips my mind - for $0.00.  The price is right
> but again if you are given a Bic razor whos blades are you going to
> buy?

We're not responsible for the behavior of Red Hat or Caldera.  (I
believe you're referring to the "Linux Technology Preview" from
Caldera, which retails for $19.95 with a $20 rebate; I don't have the
faintest clue what Red Hat product you're referring to.)
Incidentally, if you want Caldera's LTP for free, I think every LUG in
the country got several boxes full of copies, gratis...

FWIW, I've been selling Debian CDs on the side for about 1.5 years,
and in that time I think I've had one repeat customer out of over a
hundred.  Either I'm pissing off my customers (always a possibility,
but I don't get much hate mail ;-), or they're upgrading to new
releases for free over the net.

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