I just read an interesting paragraph from the home page of ReactOS.

“The main goal of the ReactOS project is to provide an operating system which is binary compatible with Windows. This will allow your Windows applications and drivers to run as they would on your Windows system. Additionally, the look and feel of the Windows operating system is used, such that people accustomed to the familiar user interface of Windows® would find using ReactOS straightforward. The ultimate goal of ReactOS is to allow you to remove Windows® and install ReactOS without the end user noticing the change.”

http://www.reactos.org/en/index.html

At present, ReactOS is listed as being in the alpha stage of development which means you should not download it tomorrow to use in your classroom computers.

However, if the goals of this project can be pulled off, what will it mean to open source software in general and Linux in particular?

Windows XP is the unquestioned “top dog” of operating systems. As of February 2009, ZDNet’s web site reports it as still running 71 percent of business PCs.

If ReactOS can create a secure (read virus and malware free) Windows XP replacement, wouldn’t the majority jump to it before the likes of Linux? Of course Linux is real today and ReactOS may only be vaporware.

What do you think?

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