updated 03:10 pm EST, Wed January 24, 2007
Windows-free Dell Desktops
Dell today began selling the Dimension n Series, its first mainstream desktops to ship without a copy of Windows. Each variant -- including the Intel-based E520N as well as the AMD-based C521N and E521N -- ships only with a copy of the open-source FreeDOS. This gives owners just enough software to more easily install Linux or other operating systems and also reduces the ultimate price, Dell says.
Accordingly, the systems are priced towards the budget level. Both AMD models begin with an Athlon 64 X2 3800+ processor, 512MB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, and either a Radeon X1300 (C521N) or GeForce 7300LE (E521N) video card at a price of $624. The E520N opts instead for a 2.8GHz dual-core Pentium 4 and doubles the stock memory to 1GB, using a GeForce 7300LE for video. Dell estimates that all three n series Dimension models will ship next week.