Buying without an O/S

  -pops- 14:40 21 Jul 2003

There are a couple of threads at the moment concerned with "recovery disks" and other euphemisms that try to fob you off without a proper version of the operating system.

So, has anyone tried recently to buy a machine with no operating system so that you can install your own? Did you succeed?

There are a number of reasons why you may not want or need a computer with Windows in it.

Out of curiosity, a few years ago, I phoned around the suppliers to ask about this. The general reaction at the time was that they thought I was mad as they couldn't understand how the machine would work without an O/S. If I explained that I was installing my own and that I wanted a discount, no discount was forthcoming - with or without an O/S the price was the same.

I am wondering if the situation has changed.


  Sir Radfordin 14:47 21 Jul 2003

Microsoft get very annoyed with suppliers that take this approach as they know its often going to be a PC sold that may end up running a rival product.

That unfortunatly is the kind of dominance that M$ have on the market. Some of the smaller companies would be happy to provide such a PC.

  dth 14:53 21 Jul 2003

I ordered my last p/c (from Watfords Savastore) last year without an o/s and had no problems at all.

  rep 15:07 21 Jul 2003

I believe many of the major brands are 'coerced' into providing OEM copies of MS operating systems and hence the reluctance to supply without it installed.
I did manage to buy my 1st PC without an OS back in 1998 but from a small independant retailer and received a £60 or so discount.
One thing all users should be aware of - OEM licencing - essentially it means the copy of the software is only valid for the PC it was purchased with, which negates the need for providing a CD copy from the suppliers point of view and also 'discourages' piracy from the MS viewpoint.

  davidg_richmond 16:25 21 Jul 2003

I recently had to refund a laptop (WinXP re-installed) for a customer as they had bought it to run some very rare software on it. This software required a Linux installation, and when the software apparently couldn't create it's Linux installation he came back for a refund.

So I suppose if a PC is sold without an OS the retailer could find themselves having problems if a user tries to get support for their hardware when a non-MS OS is installed.

  leo49 17:41 21 Jul 2003

Poweroid will do this which is the main reason they're current favourites to supply my new machine.

  -pops- 18:45 21 Jul 2003

Thanks for the feedback.

On the machines I made I would always offer them without and O/S or with an O/S of choice (so long as it was Windows, I'm not familiar with others). Obviously, I was far from being a commercial supplier but I did sell two without any O/S at all, the reason being the buyer couldn't find a commercial assembler who would supply without at a lower price.

Sir R. Sounds just like M$! They might reflect occasionally that the PC was here before they were. The PC is more than just a convenience for them to stick their software in.

rep: I don't think the problem is with OEM versions of Windows (I use that in my machines). It is more the so-called recovery disks which do not fulfill any function other than get a machine going again by sorting out hidden this that and the others on a hard drive. The problem with the OEM software being only for one machine applies to all grades of WXP where the activation process is supposed to ensure this.

I will bear in mind the non-O/S suppliers for my future machines in case I become too decrepit to assemble my next one!!

I will close this now.

Thanks again.


  wee eddie 00:24 22 Jul 2003

I seem to remember that a high proportion of the returned stock is sold without O/S

  TechMad 09:31 22 Jul 2003

Novatech offer all its PCs and Notebooks without an operating system. One can be added for extra money.

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