Intel's Moblin platform takes big steps

While Linux-based operating systems have been well-received for netbook form factors, some of the highest-profile distributions have not yet taken a strong hold there, especially when competing against desktop operating systems like Windows XP. One of those not-yet-a-hits is Moblin, an Intel-endorsed open source platform designed especially for Atom-powered devices.

Today, however, Moblin received a couple of big boosts as a result of the Intel Developer Forum going on this week, helping to grow the project's scope considerably.

First, Dell and Canonical announced that they have collaborated to create an Ubuntu Moblin remix for the Dell Inspiron Mini 10v netbook. Dell already offered the Atom N270-powered Mini 10v with Ubuntu 8.04 pre-loaded. This new remix --t echnically called Ubuntu Moblin Remix Developer Edition -- will be a new pre-install option for the netbook on Dell's Web site beginning tomorrow. Dell will be making this remix available to any who want to install it, but does not guarantee it will perform as well as it does on its intended platform, the Mini 10v.

In her keynote this morning, Intel's corporate vice president and general manager of software and services Renee James, announced that Samsung will follow Dell's, Asus', and Acer's lead, and release its own devices running Moblin 2.0 in the near future. No precise date was given.

Secondly, Intel and Microsoft announced that Silverlight 3 and Moonlight support are coming to all Atom-based devices. Renee James presented both Moblin and Windows 7 Atom devices running IIS Smooth Streaming this morning, the variable streaming technology that can provide live streams up to 1080p resolution.

"We are excited by further support of Silverlight by key industry leaders and how this collaboration delivers on Silverlight's cross-platform, cross-browser, and cross-device promise by going beyond just the PC to allow developers to reach more endpoints for their applications and services. We see this is a clear extension of our current efforts with Novell where we are building an open source implementation of Silverlight called Moonlight that is targeted at the broad range of Linux-based PCs," the Silverlight team blog said today.

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