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Linux is coming to Juno and Netzero

By on August 12, 2003 (8:00:00 AM)

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- by Joe Barr -
United Online is planning to support Linux. United Online is the parent firm for such well-known ISPs as Juno, Netzero, and Blue Light. According to data from their most recent quarter-closing reports, United Online has more than 2.5 million subscribers, making them the fourth-largest dial-up ISP in the world, trailing only AOL, MSN, and Earthlink.

At least one Juno customer has been told that Juno will soon be supporting Linux. Candace Boheme told me by e-mail that she spoke to a Juno customer support person on August 4 about reverting to a free account. She had recently installed Red Hat on her computer and didn't want to have to pay two ISPs in order to get Linux support. She wrote, "He told me he thought that Linux compatibility was in the works and put me on hold for several minutes while he went to confirm that the info was correct. When he returned he said, yes, it was to be announced soon but could not give me an exact ETA. He just advised that I keep on the lookout for the announcement."

The Juno help page shows Lindows as one of the platforms in a dropdown menu customers use to get support. No other Linux distributions show up there, and elsewhere on the Juno site customers are told that Juno only supports Windows and Mac OS.

LindowsOS spokesperson Cheryl Schwarzman explained the Lindows option on the Juno support menu when she told me that LindowsOS 4.0 includes "dial-up tools to connect to NetZero, Juno, Speakeasy, and NetHere as well as several others."

Peter Delgrosso, Director of Public Relations for United Online, confirmed the rumor late Monday. He said, "United Online is currently collecting information from interested users in anticipation of a Linux/Lindows client release to meet their needs. While we currently do not offer service for the Lindows (Linux) platform on the NetZero or Juno brands, the company is planning on developing a service, however no specific release date has been set. Once the product is launched, the company will notify the public."

Joe Barr has been writing about technology for 10 years, and about Linux for five. His work has appeared in IBM Personal Systems Journal, LinuxGazette, LinuxWorld, Newsforge, phrack, SecurityFocus, and VARLinux.org. He is the founder of The Dweebspeak Primer, the official newsletter of the Linux Liberation Army.

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