MadPenguin.org have had a talk with the MEPIS founder and others about how it is to take a Linux-distribution into retail.
Read it here
MP: What steps does a manufacturer like Mepis have to go through to get its products carried in the manufacture-to-wholesale-to-retail chain?
WW: Retail _is_a chicken and egg problem. But first consumers need to be educated that MEPIS and a couple of other Linux distros are very easy to install and use. If you know how to use Windows, you can be productive in MEPIS in less then an hour–and installing MEPIS can take as little as 5 minutes, including the office apps. By contrast installing Windows and MS-Office usually takes several hours. And with a properly designed Linux system, there is no threat from spyware and viruses. Once the public knows what Linux can do for them and how easy and safe it is, then there can be real demand for Linux in the retail market.