Non-MS netbooks were inferior. Almost all of them had shit or otherwise hacked up Linux systems that could not install any software or do much of anything. The only people that put out decent systems were Dell and Acer.
When netbooks were first released the Linux ones were the best sellers. That boat quickly sailed. Linux had it's chance and it was roundly rejected by the people that purchased them. There are a few here and there that liked them, but there was virtually no repeat customers.
Microsoft didn't 'manage to shift' anything. Blaming Microsoft for Linux Desktop's failure is just means that you completely ignore any possible lesson that can be learned here.
A very careful examination why Android has succeeded while the traditional "Linux distribution" approach to making a smart phone OS failed utterly is in order, also.