It's a start
"Ubuntu fans are urged to hold back their virtual quills of vitriol..."
Actually this Ubuntu fan happens to agree, on the desktop it *is* a niche OS. But so was Windows, back in the days prior to version 3, and Linux is a hell of a lot better than that turd of an OS ever was.
This is 40,000 more Linux boxes than they would have sold otherwise, and I know that as and when I'm in the market for a new laptop, Dell will now be top of my list for at least having the balls to try this. Fair play to them.
"Installing Windows is an easy task that many people would undergo to save themselves £50."
Damn you Adam, I just coffee-washed my entire desk when I read this comment!
Aside from the fact that, IIRC, the Linux loaded Dells are actually a little MORE expensive, clearly you have NEVER installed a retail copy of Windows (which your putative hooky copy would most likely be a hooky copy of).
I have, and I wouldn't repeat the ordeal if you paid me to do it for you. No fucking chance.
Most of the people who "learned" on Windows have never installed it themselves. They bought their PC with it installed already, and the nearest they've come to reinstalling might be to restore it from the CD that came with their computer. That's a hell of a lot different to actually installing the bugger. Most normal people just keep using the computer with the original install until the cruft overwhelms it and they buy a new computer, or they pay PC World to "repair" it for them, or call on the neighbourhood/family geek to do the same.
Paris Hilton as the avatar because the default Ubuntu login colours are a lot like naked flesh.