Dell is being urged by thousands of its customers to pre-install Linux on its machines.

After setting up a new user forum, Dell IdeaStorm 10 days ago, the company has started to reply to some of the most heavily-supported requests.

The top suggestion, signed by 83,000 users, was that Dell offer Linux on some of its machines rather than Windows.

However, Dell has not agreed in any way that it might do so. Instead, it has said that it will ensure compatibility on some of its business machines with Novell's Linux software.

"We are listening, and as a result, we are working with Novell to certify corporate client products for Linux, including our OptiPlex desktops, Latitude notebooks, and Dell Precision workstations", Dell wrote in a statement.

Although Dell responded to a suggestion that Vista be provided without extra free software like AOL and Google tools, it didn't make a statement in regard to a request that OpenOffice be provided alongside Microsoft Office.

Fifty-three thousand users supported that idea.

Along similar lines, thousands of users also recommended that Dell pre-install Firefox instead of Internet Explorer on to its computers.