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Linspire Gives Away Linux OS

Linspire, formerly known as Lindows, is giving away its desktop Linux operating system for the first time as a way to publicize its name change.

According to CEO Michael Robertson, the offer is valid "for the next few days." Users can download the Linspire OS 4.5 software, which until now Linspire has resisted giving away, unlike other Linux distributors, direct from the Linspire Web site.

Although Linspire OS 4.5 usually costs $49.95, users can download the software for free by entering a one-word coupon code. Robertson was coy about the code, saying in his online posting, "No, it's not an oversight that I haven't provided the actual coupon code. You'll have to guess what the one-word code is."

The code is "lindows," the former name for the Linux vendor.

On Tuesday, Lindows announced the name change to Linspire in a move both the company and industry analysts said was spurred by continued legal attacks by Microsoft, which contends that "Lindows" is too close to its trademarked "Windows."

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