Sunday, December 13, 2009

Jolicloud Netbook OS Enters Beta

Google's Chromium OS might be stealing all the limelight these days but that is only one of the netbook optimized operating systems that is sitting on the horizon. In fact there are several new offerings that are currently in full beta testing including Intel's Moblin and the independently devolved Jolicloud.

Earlier this week Jolicloud's primary developer Tariq Kim presented the first public beta release of the new netbook optimized OS. As of the announcement, anyone can download and install Jolicloud Express on most Windows netbooks out there.

Jolicloud's Wubi-derived installer make the process fairly simple and pain free. Users have three options for installation. You can opt for the pain free way and download the 600Mb .exe [or the torrent] from their website, or you can opt to use an .ISO to build a bootable disk. For those with no optical drive there is the third option which is to build a USB version. For those that choose the executable its as simple as launching the program, making a few selections and within a few moments you're system can dual-boot into Jolicloud or Windows.

Jolicloud hopes to have it first full version out in early 2010. From the looks of my initial testing it looks as though they are really close to an official release.

Can I Use Jolicloud?

Jolicloud is only offering support for netbooks therefore the OS and the included driver packs are optimized around the hardware found most common in those devices. As such anyone running a netbook should be able to download and install the operating system and it should run fine, however you can check the list of the currently supported models beforehand to make sure. Sadly this also means there isn't much support for laptops and desktops although since the OS is built around the Linux 2.6.32-rc6 kernel it should work on most laptops and desktops but the company will not provide any end user support.

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