Lenovo has been ordered by a French court to refund licensing fees for that other OS and costs to a customer who bought a personal computer with that other OS installed when the customer wanted to use GNU/Linux on his personal computer. A previous decision that the customer should have returned or not bought the PC if he did not want that other OS was overturned upon consideration of unfair trading practices involving bundling.
Of course, the legal costs far outweigh the licensing fees. Now, the big question is will Lenovo do the right thing by allowing unbundling of the software, sales of naked PCs or installing GNU/Linux? Installing GNU/Linux may not avoid the problem for Lenovo because a user may object to Ubuntu GNU/Linux and prefer Debian GNU/Linux. The ultimate solution is to sell identical units bundled with a variety of OS or naked, without an OS. Lenovo are in for a lot of trouble selling in France if they don’t do the right thing. Will they?
From a business perspective selling naked PCs avoids the need to support an OS but they may not sell. I would bet Lenovo figures out a way to facilitate retailers installing the OS of the customer’s choice. Lenovo already certifies their equipment for several distros. It would not be difficult to equip retailers with a box for cloning disc images. If Lenovo does the right thing, will other OEMs? Stay tuned. We are watching.