CherryPal PC: Linux and Green Go Together

I am so proud of the Linux Community for many reasons, but I’m amazed at how well it continues to impress the ‘greenie’ in me.

Until this week, we had three stand-outs in the ultra-environmentally-friendly department - the cool Zonbu desktop and laptop, and the fit-PC (for the record, yes, you can get Windows XP on the fit-PC, too). Just this week, a svelte and diminutive yet powerful new entrant arrived on the scene, i.e. the CherryPal PC. The CherryPal’s green cred is strong. While a typical desktop PC uses around 114 Watts, the CherryPal uses only 2 Watts. It has no moving parts and uses 80% fewer parts than a standard desktop PC. However, it does not appear that the CherryPal supports the RoHS standards for eco-friendly construction.

Beyond its green characteristics, the CherryPal has other interesting qualities. As with the Zonbu PC, CherryPal leaves application and storage management to the manufacturer. It uses a customized Debian OS with the OS and browser collapsed into a single layer for improved speed and security. Local storage occurs on a 4 GB flash drive. The CherryPal also sports the Freescale’s MPC5121e mobileGT processor and 256 MB of DDR2 DRAM.

Even if you aren’t a greenie, you may want to check out the CherryPal or one of the other green PCs to save yourself some green. The company claims that if you run your standard desktop PC 8 hours a day, you will spend an average of $37 per year on electricity and emit about 300 pounds of CO-2 into the atmosphere. If you use a CherryPal, they say, you’ll spend only 65 cents per year and emit only 5 pounds of CO-2.

If I add up all of the PCs in my household, that is a good chunk of change. Maybe it is easy being green after all!

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James Gray is Products Editor for Linux Journal