This interesting article from CNet points out what most of us already know… Windows is anything but inexpensive. It’s interesting to see some of the arguments that MS makes about this point…

Microsoft General Manger Brad Brooks argues that Windows is a bargain,… “If you break down the cost of the software over the life of the PC, it works out to be less than how much you’d spend on milk for your family over that same period of time,” Brooks said.

(Personally, I have small kids at home and we go thru quite a bit of milk) – I figure the average family drinks 1 gallon of milk per week ($3.00 per gallon) x 52 weeks = $156.00 per year in milk. So I suppose when you consider that MS is currently releasing a new desktop every 5 years — milk is more expensive than Vista. If you start to figure in things like required hardware replacements or upgrades, and an upgrade to MS Office 2007… the difference is price begins to shrink rapidly.

If you consider a Linux desktop alternative – such as SUSE Linux Enterprise Desktop 10 which includes OpenOffice (compatible with MS Office, btw) – you will end up with the features and functionality that makes the typical office worker productive, at a far better price-point than either Vista or milk. šŸ™‚

You’ll also end up with freedom from proprietary lock-in, and freedom from the annoying milk moustache.

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