Christopher Price is the Founding Editor of PhoneNews.com. Today, he leads the team building iConsole.tv - a new kind of Android™ device. He still likes to pontificate... a lot. You can visit his personal blog at ChristopherPrice.net.

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19 responses to “Microsoft Demanding ARM OEMs Block Linux on Windows RT Hardware”

  1. Joe

    This is the biggest bunch of bullshit. Microsoft is not locking out any alternate OSes on anything but Windows 8 ARM tablets, which is no different than what Google and Apple already do on their tablets. Yet I don’t see you crying about them. You’re simply a Microsoft hating shill whose spreading a lot of BS.

    Here’s the simple fact. If you want an Android tablet, why would you buy a Windows 8 tablets? Your statements make no sense. If you want Android, you buy Android. If you want iOS, you buy an iPad. If you want Windows 8, you buy a Windows 8 tablet.

    One last thing, UEFI is not a Microsoft feature at all.

  2. Danythues

    Uefi smartphones tablets laptops computers etc.

    microsoft never invented anything and are always trying to take control of evrything

    well sucks for them the IT world have no master it will never work

  3. Microsoft playing dirty (like Apple) by blocking Linux on their Hardware « pakos.me

    […] Microsoft Illegally? Demanding ARM OEMs to Block Linux on Windows 8 Hardware | PhoneNews.com. Rate this: Share the love!Like this:LikeBe the first to like this […]

  4. BIgcat

    Simple question from a novice;
    If you choose not to keep the Windows OS, can you format the drive and then successfully install a different OS?

  5. crb3

    @BIgcat: no, and that’s exactly the point.

  6. Bigcat

    I guess this is good news for Linux specific hardware vendors and white box dealers; if there is a bright side.
    The legal trouble I see here is not whether Microsoft is right or wrong, it seems from the blogs they are definitely on thin ice. The issue is finding an entity within the Open Source / Linux community willing to put up the huge monetary investment to see this through in court. The legal process would be lengthy and arduous as Microsoft has the funds to mount numerous appeals, cause legal delays, etc. It would seem Microsoft is making the bet no one will step up to the plate. In light of the mid-1990s pathetic DOJ case, it is not hard to see why Microsoft feels no threat.

  7. TGM

    @Bigcat would it really require an entity in open source to take it to court? That is what the DOJ is there for. Notification of Microsoft moving to break their agreement should be enough.

  8. Bigcat

    TGM, I agree!! (in theory anyway)
    History shows the DOJ is unable to bring Microsoft to justice. Only Europe has succeeded in this arena. My bet is that DOJ ignores the issue completely rather than risk defeat / face again.
    I am not being negative, I sincerely believe this will promote independence and more business opportunities for the Linux / Open Source community. Something I feel is very much needed, we need to stop relying on others. Change and growth is always scary.

  9. Marc

    Microsoft’s consent decree expired in May of 2011. There are no current findings that would prohibit Microsoft from any of these sorts of activities. A new antitrust case would be required in order for this to be illegal, and given that Microsoft is hardly a monopolist in the ARM tablet market and further given that no one here is suggesting Microsoft is sanctioning OEMs if they do choose to build tablets for other operating systems, this article seems to be completely offbase. There is no current illegality, and the odds that a case could be made that this would eventually be found illegal are extremely slim.

  10. Tom

    Marc,

    You obviously missed Christopher’s comment… Or were just copying and pasting you’re comment from another site… Or the Microsoft spin room.

    The change applies to all ARM devices, including laptops and desktops, where Microsoft clearly is still a monopoly.

  11. Bigcat

    Marc,
    I have read a number of blogs and articles on this subject today, trying to catch up. Microsoft supporters are consistently missing / avoiding / ignoring the laptop and desktop monopoly issue. You may have hit the nail on the head with folks copying and pasting from the MS spin room.
    I am no legal expert and do not pretend to be; but one thought drives me batty. Does not the consumer buy the device? I know there are patents and copyright laws protecting software, OSs, drivers, etc. But how can a manufacturer stop you from doing what you want with the hardware? This would drive any other industry bankrupt. Imagine a car builder saying you can only put XYZ tires on it’s vehicles, a television manufacturer allowing one network provider or an airline restricting it’s planes to certain airports. How did we get here?

  12. Ron

    Go Microsoft! I support this 100% no way would I want to see that turd of an OS called Linux or that inbred cousin Android on my W8 tablet.

  13. Ronald Trip

    @RON. Are you saying that you need a locked bootloader so that you can’t install Linux/Android on YOUR tablet? The way you wrote that, implies that you can’t help yourself and have the urge to install an OS you don’t want on your tablet, if MS doesn’t lock it.

    My guess is that you want others prohibited from using their legally purchased hardware as they see fit. The only problem with that is that it turns otherwise general purpose hardware in a locked toy. Don’t think for a moment that MS will allow you to upgrade to the next version of Windows for ARM. It will create a whole new upgrade treadmill through planned obsolescense. The e-waste will increase quite a bit.

    Windows as firmware. You’d have to be absolutely crazy to see this as a desirable thing. The only silver lining I see, is that Windows 8 for ARM is a toy OS without the possibility to run the vast selection of x86 software. It might “take off” the same way Windows Phone 7 has “soared”.

  14. Bloodymirova

    This is a really big deal and I don’t think it will fly in the EU, even if the US allows it. In any case this would be Microsoft’s version of shooting themselves in the leg. Why would I buy any hardware that is locked? Even Apple haven’t gone this far for their desktops and laptops.

  15. N sam

    The news is microsoft is creating a separate version to run on ARM based tablets and another for PC’s…and combine them to work as an ecosystem,, i. e. Windows phone, Windows 8 and windows 8 (ARM)…

  16. Microsoft is Finished on Devices, Tries Cheating and Perhaps Should be Sued | Techrights

    […] illegality of this is also being debated in the news: Microsoft has been discovered to have changed its requirements for the upcoming ARM version of […]

  17. Jeffer

    Like IBM in the 1980, 1990, Microsoft is still relying on a fail strategy giving the company almost no growth, there is a limit to the game of Monopoly: you win by absence opf players.

    If Microsoft still wants to act rough, like the king of the hill, then the OEM´s as well as the customers will go play with a sexier partner.

    The choice is plenty, from Linux, to Android, Meego, and now the upcoming opensource WebOS from HP.

    For EFI, nothing forces OEM to use EFI, etc… and OEM canb use creatives solutions, that I have in mind, but let Microsoft discover, as it goes.

    Will at some point Microsoft be willing to compete, on the quality of a superior products, or continue to indulge in exposing its weaknesses?

    Note that the ARM based notebook does not really need windows, actually today most ARM based ¨solutions¨ are Linux Kernel derivatives!

    Go FOSS ! (Free Open Source Software).

  18. noah

    So many people don’t seem to get what Microsoft is trying to do. So let me explain: If Microsoft actually somehow gets this passed, then You CAN NOT install other operating systems on ANY devices because it will be ILLEGAL. It wouldn’t matter if you want to, it wouldn’t matter if the manufacturer wants you to be able to, it would still be illegal. They claim it is for our “security” but this is perhaps the most obvious lie I have ever seen in my life, and I have seen some pretty obvious ones.

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