Microsoft Gazumps Mandriva in Nigeria

Nov 02, 2007

Nigeria's Classmate PCs will not run on Mandriva Linux, but on Windows.

Just three days ago, Mandriva proudly announced that the 17,000 Classmate PCs ordered by Nigeria would be running the French distribution. Two days ago the success story took a strange twist: Nigeria will be paying for Mandriva machines but installing Windows on them.

In his blog, the obviously irate Mandriva CEO, François Bancilhon, published an open letter to Microsoft's Steve Ballmer, giving vent to his frustration and making some fairly vague assertions:

"Wow! I'm impressed, Steve! What have you done to these guys to make them change their mind like this? It's quite clear to me, and it will be to everyone. How do you call what you just did Steve? There is various names for it, I'm sure you know them."

Mandriva will be hard hit by the loss: on the one hand the company will be losing support business, on the other hand, the order would have given Mandriva a foothold in the race for market shares of educational systems in developing countries.

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