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Xandros, hoping to capture what it calls “50 million disenfranchised Windows” users, is offering a 50 percent rebate on its Desktop Home and Home Edition Premium editions of its Linux operating system.

The regular Home edition sells for $39.99, and the premium edition sells for $79.99. If users upgrade their operating system from Windows 98, 98SE or ME to Xandros 4.0, they can receive a 50 percent mail-in rebate, the company announced July 28.

On July 11, Microsoft formally ended all support and security upgrades for Windows 98. Xandros, a leading Linux desktop distributor, has been aggressively courting Windows users that do not want to upgrade to Windows XP or Vista.

Click here to read a review of Xandros 4.0.

“After upgrading to Xandros, users will continue to have full read and write access to all documents, music, and other files that reside within their original Windows installation and users can choose to install and continue to use Microsoft Office and other popular Windows programs,” the company wrote in the rebate announcement.

New York-based Xandros is offering the rebate offer until Aug. 31.

Users can install Xandros Desktop Home Edition on existing hardware and have Windows compatibility, including the ability to work on the same files from Linux and Windows.

Those users upgrading to the premium edition can choose Windows products like Microsoft Office or other open-source software products, such as

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