A Linux user has managed to persuade Dell to refund the cost of Windows XP after buying a laptop from the vendor.
Dave Mitchell, a freelance programmer from Yorkshire, bought a Dell laptop in October but did not want the bundled copy of Windows XP Home.
The Linux enthusiast went through the registration procedure for the operating system, but then declined to activate the product and took screenshots of every step.
"I had a clear record of what the licence did or did not say," he told the BBC. "I fully intended to take it as far as the small claims court just to be bloody-minded."
Mitchell sent a letter to Dell's UK headquarters explaining his position and received a cheque for £55.23 ($138.00) within days. Dell did not ask him for the Windows XP installation discs that came with the laptop.
"Dell does not have an official program that accommodates the return of the operating system," said a spokeswoman from Dell.
"In general a customer would return the system if unhappy with any pre-installed software end-user licence agreement, including the operating system.
"Customers should consult the applicable terms and conditions of sale for more information on Dell's return policy."
Dell has offered alternative operating systems to Windows on its desktop range for some time now but laptops only come with Windows.
Dell pays refund for unwanted Windows XP
By Iain Thomson on Nov 20, 2006 10:05AM