Subject: Intellectual exercise: case study fsb
From: Jesus M Gonzalez-Barahona <>
Date: 21 Feb 2003 18:11:18 +0100

Hi all,

Bussiness: providing PC manufacturers (assemblers) with a libre
operating system (probably a GNU/Linux distribution) tailored to their

Targets: PC manufacturers above a certain thresold (50,000 or 100.000
units per year)

Service: engineering and customization of GNU/Linux so that it can be
shipped in PCs instead of MSWin, targeted to the regular non-geek user.
Special attention to assemblers needs (disk replication process, support
of shiped hw, regular update of shipped software, etc.)

Income: fee of about 5-15 euros per unit shipped by the assembler (with
a minimun of tens of thousands of shipments).

Structure: mainly commercial (relationship with assemblers) and
engineering (putting together the distribution)

Product: a minimalist but usable GNU/Linux distribution, targeted to
domestic and small bussiness, simple to use, rock solid with respect to
supported hw. Mostly (if possible, only) libre software.

Open questions:

- Is the model possible (is there enough demand?, is GNU/Linux ready to
meet regular custom needs?, is Linux supporting *all* the hw shipped
commonly today?, is there end users willing to buy a Linux PC, instead
of a Win one?)

- Is the model sustainable (would be interest by PC assemblers in buying
the product the second time?, would they find interesting added value
for them? would they be interested in buying the thing instead of
engineering themselves, in case there is demmand from end-users?)

- Could the engineering be outsourced, e.g., to a company with
experience in Linux distributions? would that make sens?

- Cost model

- Many others

I know there are models rather similar to this one, but maybe someone
wants to comment on exactly this one...



Jesus M. Gonzalez Barahona                | Grupo de Sistemas y
Comunicaciones / | ESCET, Universidad Rey Juan
tel: +34 91 664 74 67                     | c/ Tulipan s/n
fax: +34 91 664 74 90                     | 28933 Mostoles, Spain