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By | Kelly Fiveash 1st July 2008 14:53

Xandros buys Linspire, says bruised ex-CEO

No harmony for Carmony

Desktop Linux maker Xandros is understood to be in the process of buying Linux distributor Linspire.

According to several reports, and former Linspire CEO Kevin Carmony, Xandros has bought the privately-held company, which is based in San Diego, California, after stockholders agreed to sell all of Linspire’s assets.

The deal is believed to include Linspire, Freespire, and the firm’s distribution agnostic Click ‘N Run desktop installation platform.

Carmony, who as a shareholder in the company said he received a memo confirming the deal yesterday, laid into the buy-out.

“To me, this looks like Michael [Robertson, Linspire’s founder and chief owner], the ‘captain’ of the Linspire ship, sees the boat sinking, so he casually tells the passengers on the ship that he's just going on a quick supply run, jumps on the only life boat with any cash and valuables, paddles off to safety, and leaves everyone else behind to sink. Pathetic,” he said in a blog post.

Ubuntu-loving Carmony, who left the firm in the summer of 2007, described any such merger as "being a completely insignificant event for Linspire shareholders, and the end for Linspire customers". He also accused Robertson of being unable to face the "public humiliation that Linspire failed under his leadership".

Linspire released version 6.0 of its operating system in October last year, to very little fanfare. The OS maker lost a bit of street cred with the open source software faithful after signing a partnership agreement with Microsoft.

Linspire and Canada-based Xandros, which has been busy of late pre-installing its Linux distribution on Asus’ increasingly popular Eee computer line, could not be immediately reached for comment at time of writing. ®

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