Inc. introduced an inexpensive computer for business customers Thursday that is designed to run limited applications on the company’s Lindows OS operating system.

The BusinessStation can be used by corporations as a Web kiosk for corporate employees or visitors, or by retailers as an online order form station, a spokesperson said. It starts at US$169, and runs the company’s LindowsCD operating system.

LindowsCD is simply a version of the Linux-based Lindows OS that boots from a CD inside each BusinessStation. The operating system also comes with OpenOffice, a office productivity suite developed by Sun Microsystems Inc. that produces documents compatible with Microsoft Corp.’s Office suite of products.

For US$10 a year per machine, will provide customers with services such as profile management tools to customize start-up pages at a particular BusinessStation kiosk, the spokesperson said. Administrators can remotely configure and monitor the BusinessStation over a corporate network.

Users can’t alter the data on the BusinessStation because everything is stored either on the CD or on a remote server, which makes the machines ideal for public use or in low-cost deployments such as call centres, the San Diego company said. The PCs don’t have hard drives, but do come with floppy drives, said.

The BusinessStations are available in a variety of configurations from several distributors, including TigerDirect Inc., Medialand Systems Inc.’s Web site, and Processors from Advanced Micro Devices Inc. and Via Technologies Inc. are used in the PCs, and most come with 256MB of synchronous dynamic RAM (SDRAM).