Edubuntu and Other Linux Education Solutions

Posted: February 27, 2007 in Education, Educational Technology, Instructional Technology, School 2.0, Technology, Technology Integration

TuxYesterday I read about the Ohio school district that is planning to replace the operating systems on computers running Windows ME in their school district with Linux. The savings by not upgrading to Windows XP is estimated to be around $412,000.00. Obviously these computers do not have the capabilities to upgrade to Windows Vista, but with Linux the life of the machines will be extended. What to do with legacy equipment is often an issue in school districts. Getting the biggest bang for your buck in an institution with a limited budget is important. Linux is a viable choice, and I am curious as to what version of Linux the Ohio district has chosen or will choose. Whatever it is, they appear to be making a wise decision that will save money, utilize operable equipment, and expose their students to another operating system choice that is for the most part FREE!

Edubuntu is a FREE version of Linux that is expressly designed for use in schools. You can try the operating system without installing it on a computer by downloading, burning, and using a Live CD version. After you try it out, it can easily be installed from this CD and placed on a PC or Mac computer. Edubuntu also comes with installed and provides a nice alternative office suite of software for word processing, etc. Other versions of this “family” of Linux distributions include Ubuntu, Kubuntu, and Xubuntu. Each version can have education software installed later if one wanted to choose specific programs found in Edubuntu for specifc grade level needs. Xubuntu is designed to work on computers with limited capabilities (memory, processor, etc.) and may be a good choice for an old computer you want to continue using at home or would like to donate to a school or a student in your family or neighborhood. There are many other possibilities with other versions of Linux.

The concern for many people is the ability to be able to use Windows dependent programs, and this is being addressed with emulation software via WINE or Crossover Linux. Some of these solutions will have cost, but when compared to upgrading commercial software and/or hardware there is a huge savings. With tightening budgets for technology, open source solutions are becoming popular, and we will probably see more schools like the one in Ohio making the move to Linux.

  1. […] School Goes Linux 2 03 2007 I already mentioned the Ohio school district that was planning to install Linux on legacy computers that are running Windows ME.  Today I read […]

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