Wyse Technology has released a new version of Linux for its thin clients as well as a new terminal to run it.
Wyse Linux version 6 and the Winterm 5150SE are intended for what executives at the hardware company claim is a burgeoning market for Linux-based thin desktops.
“Enterprise IT groups may want an alternative solution (to Microsoft operating systems),” senior director for the Wyse Winterm business line, Michael DeNeffe, said. “Or they are mandated to use open source software.
“They may also need an operating system that’s more secure than Windows XP and more recently, CE.Net and XP Embedded. Finally, there are the [open source] licensing savings.”
DeNeffe cited IDC research that showed 20 per cent of all thin clients run Linux.
Thin clients are small boxes, sometimes with a built-in display screen, that typically simply display applications that actually reside on servers.
Simpler and with fewer parts than conventional PCs, thin clients shift application deployment and support from hundreds or even thousands of PCs to a much smaller group of servers. Thin clients typically run compact operating systems, such as XP Embedded or Windows CE, and now Linux variations.
The new flavour from Wyse is more modular in design, so customers can select all or part of the operating system’s components, depending on the features they need.
Version 6 also supports the open source Mozilla browser for the first time, as a downloadable option. The standard Wyse browser is Netscape.
The new operating system also supports Independent Computing Architecture 8, the latest version of the widely used Citrix Systems protocol for displaying server-based applications.
The new WinTerm 5150SE is the first Wyse product to use the AMD Geode GX533 processor. The new Geode works with double data rate RAM, which can run at 133MHz instead of 100MHz.
Two USB 2.0 ports are also new, along with two serial ports for connecting to legacy devices such as cash registers. The Linux version 6 and local applications are run by 32MB of Flash RAM and the device comes with 128MB of standard RAM.
The 5150SE is available now in the US, priced at $US399 and is scheduled to reach Australia in October.