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05.24.09

If Microsoft Removes 3-Applications Restriction, It Shows Great Fear of GNU/Linux

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Vista, Vista 7 at 6:38 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Vista 7 prompt

Summary: Microsoft’s plan for making money from Windows is not working out

Microsoft is “getting cold feet” — as our reader Goblin would put it — ahead of the arrival of Vista's younger sibling. Vista 7 Starter Edition is a dud and Microsoft knows it. Extracting money from it is a problem, not just the substantiated observation that it is far too heavy for sub-notebooks. If the rumours are true, then Microsoft is rethinking the strategy whose weakness we symbolised in the mockup above (cache). The original source is here, but it is also said by Goblin that: “It must be stressed that I have not been able to confirm or deny this at current time.” Given that Paul Thurrott is virtually like an employee of Microsoft, the message seems reliable.

“Vista 7 Starter Edition is a dud and Microsoft knows it.”Microsoft has meanwhile given up on Windows Vista completely. The coming year will be hugely interesting and John Dvorak, a recent Ubuntu GNU/Linux migrant, has just predicted over at MarketWatch that GNU/Linux would continue gaining on the desktop. it is already quite prevalent.

“Acer and Intel, for example, are already complaining that Windows 7 Starter Edition simply won’t sell.”

Source

Related posts:

IRC: #boycottnovell @ FreeNode: May 23rd, 2009

Posted in IRC Logs at 6:07 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

GNOME Gedit

Read the log

Enter the IRC channel now

To use your own IRC client, join channel #boycottnovell in FreeNode.

Microsoft Lobbies Obama and Partly Takes Over Gazillion

Posted in Finance, Humour, Microsoft, Videos at 5:57 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Rockefeller Center building
Rockefeller Center, New York

Summary: Microsoft wants tax breaks from President Obama; Gazillion makes a Microsoft guy its Vice President

AS we noted a couple of weeks ago, Obama* wishes to rectify some rules about taxation, but Microsoft, having already snubbed American workers, is working hard against the government. It’s back to heavyweight lobbying.

“This is becoming worse than a satire. It’s infuriating to some.”On to another subject — the eternal issue of Microsoft's disregard for competition — there is yet another report about Microsoft weaseling out. Microsoft gives it away in its lobbying blog and Pamela Jones over at Groklaw states that their response said ‘the EU Commission bigwigs would be at the conference, and therefore unable to take care of Microsoft: “As a result, it appears that many of the most influential Commission and national competition officials with the greatest interest in our case will be in Zurich and so unable to attend our hearing in Brussels.”‘

This is becoming worse than a satire. It’s infuriating to some.

As we try to keep track of Microsoft cronies, here is another new press release worth keeping track of. There is also some coverage which helps it be seen that this hiring renders Gazillion a prisoner of Redmond.

Gazillion Hires Ex-Microsoft GM Moulder

[...]

Charged with overseeing overall management of Gazillion’s internal studios, Moulder will lead NetDevil, Gargantuan, Amazing Society and Slipgate Ironworks as they collectively continue their work on two Marvel super hero MMOs, Jumpgate Evolution and other online games both announced and unannounced.

Will GNU/Linux be among the platforms supported now that Microsoft is at the helm?
_____
* To be more accurate, it’s not really Obama. George Carlin has a nice skit titled “who really controls America.”

Ogg Theora

What Rockefeller and Gates Have in Common

Posted in Antitrust, Bill Gates, Finance, Microsoft at 5:08 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“Gates’ gimmick of becoming a philanthropist repeats the Rockefeller scam almost one to one a century later.”

Dark cloud over good works of Gates Foundation

Summary: From antitrust to AstroTurfing, ethical issues resurface

OTHER than the pharmaceutical affairs we wrote about before [1, 2], these two families may share an antitrust fate. And yes, it’s a family thing. There is a new article about it in The Austin American-Statesman.

From busting up John D. Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Trust in 1911 to going after Microsoft’s use of its Windows monopoly, antitrust policy has been an important element of the U.S. regulatory landscape.

Now, in tough times, the Obama administration is swinging back the pendulum, maintaining that lax enforcement in the past decade has worsened economic woes and hurt consumers by failing to protect business competition.

Many observers are watching closely to see how the government handles its antitrust investigation of Intel Corp. Last week, European regulators hit Intel with a $1.5 billion fine for anti-competitive practices.

[...]

Q: Besides Standard Oil, what were some other big cases?

A: Despite the nation’s antitrust policies, breaking up is, in some cases, hard to do.

In 2000, a federal judge ordered the breakup of Microsoft Corp. into two companies after labeling it a monopoly over the Windows-browser bundling issue. The Supreme Court refused to hear Microsoft’s appeal of the judge’s decision, sending the case to a federal appeals court. By 2001, Justice was no longer seeking the breakup and reached a tentative deal with the company to settle the antitrust case.

The European Union did fine Microsoft a record $613 million in 2004.

A landmark breakup came in 1984, when the Bell System — which had been a government-approved monopoly — was splintered into eight regional telephone companies and one supplying long-distance service and equipment, AT&T Inc. Deregulation of the industry under a 1996 law has enabled the reconsolidation of phone companies.

Charities, as we last showed this morning, are not always as charitable as they seem. People like Berman have mastered the art of setting up charities that merely advance business agenda.

There is a lot more which Microsoft is doing. It has been a while since we last wrote about Microsoft's bribery of bloggers and Goblin writes about that again:

Microsoft lost its bottle? with “soft” being the operative word?

[...]

I wonder where this will leave the alleged “gifted” bloggers? I wonder if they will still shower the praise when the genie refuses to grant wishes no matter how many times they rub the lamp?

One of our readers, who used to work for Wal-Mart, says that Wal-Mart too is hiring Edelman for AstroTurf campaigns, just like Microsoft.

Rockefeller Center
Rockefeller Center

Myth Busting: GNU/Linux Takes So Long to Install and Set Up

Posted in GNU/Linux, Red Hat, Servers, Videos at 4:48 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Fastest Red Hat Enterprise 5 installation ever (under 10 minutes)

Ogg Theora

Direct link

Microsoft Blackmails China and Then Fires 300 Chinese Employees

Posted in Asia, Finance, Fraud at 4:26 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Grand Hyatt

Summary: Microsoft struggles to convince people to pay for software, then resorts to extortion and lays off many more employees

Last week we wrote about Microsoft's blackmail in China. This allegation seemed bold at the time, but it is now concurred by an independent source that says (in the headline): “Microsoft fights Chinese software piracy with blackmail”

To say software piracy and the use of counterfeit versions of Windows operating systems and products is rife in China is an understatement of colossal proportions. How can Microsoft tackle this problem, which is harming its business in the important emerging market of Asia? Blackmail.

As ruthless and potentially illegal as it, previously we showed that Microsoft had prioritised layoffs where labour is expensive. Nonetheless, it has just been announced that Microsoft is laying off 300 Chinese workers.

In detail, the company slashed over 300 employees in the mainland and ten employees or so in Taiwan. Most of the employees were for the MCS, EPG, as well as Windows Live divisions, pointed out an overseas report, adding that some executives were also laid off.

This was also covered in:

Microsoft is letting many people go and it may be a clear indication of financial difficulties.

“It’s easier for our software to compete with Linux when there’s piracy than when there’s not.”

Bill Gates

Ballmer and Co Meet Officials in Kyrgyzstan, Latvia; Microsoft Ukraine Curses FOSS

Posted in Asia, Europe, FUD, Microsoft at 3:51 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Boiler room
Boiler room reunion?

Summary: Microsoft gets all diplomatic up north

MICROSOFT loves using programmes like EDGI in order to undermine competition. We wrote about this in reference to Kazakhstan a few months ago and Microsoft hopes for such tactics to derail GNU/Linux in Russia.

Looking around the same region — and by no means pretending nations there are the same — here is a new report that we find from Kyrgyzstan:

Microsoft Corporation offers cooperation to Kyrgyzstan. The delegation from corporation has met with the chief of the Kyrgyz Prime Minister’s Apparat…

Steve Ballmer himself even went to Riga where he has just met the president.

President of Latvia Valdis Zatlers visited Microsoft headquarters yesterday, on May 19, to meet Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and discuss future cooperation projects of Latvia and Microsoft, the President’s Press Office informed LETA.

[...]

Minister of Culture Ints Dalderis (People’s Party) and the State Language Committee member and the IT company Tilde head Andrejs Vasiljevs also participated in Zatlers’ meeting with Ballmer.

Latvia recently made ODF its national standard and it has a GNU/Linux distribution called Austrumi. In addition, one year ago there was the following article about the public sector:

The city council of Ogre is providing free training for OpenOffice, an Open Source suite of office applications, to improve the competitiveness of the local businesses and boost the performance of the local government.

Ogre, a town with some 27,000 inhabitants is about 30 km southeast of Latvia’s capital Riga.

There are other success stories of FOSS in Latvia. Is Ballmer visiting Latvia in order to derail these developments at the very root?

Steve Ballmer went to the Ukraine at the end of last year in order to sign an MOU and now we find the head of Microsoft Ukraine slamming Free/open source software in public. Someone has fortunately provided the translation:

Recently Ukraine government made another move toward an open source software. As anyone would expect Microsoft has something to say and something to offer.

I can’t help but translate some FUD by Microsoft Ukraine CEO Dmitry Shimkiv…

Microsoft does not like open source software. It’s only pretending because pretending is better for its business.

“Open source is an intellectual-property destroyer [...] I can’t imagine something that could be worse than this for the software business and the intellectual-property business. I’m an American; I believe in the American way, I worry if the government encourages open source, and I don’t think we’ve done enough education of policymakers to understand the threat.”

Jim Allchin, President of Platforms & Services Division at Microsoft

Eye on Microsoft: Even the FBI Can’t Secure Windows

Posted in FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Security, Vista 7, Windows at 3:21 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

FBI Headquarters in Washington D.C.
FBI Headquarters in Washington D.C.

Summary: No solution in sight for Windows botnets, no matter who is in charge

THE DDOS ATTACKS against us are carried out by Microsoft Windows boxes. The economic damage and downtimes these monsters are causing never have Microsoft shell out a single penny.

Let’s take a quick look at some security news in order to shed light on Microsoft’s position. This one is priceless:

Malware found on brand new Windows netbook

[...]

Security vendor Kaspersky Labs found malware on new Windows XP netbook, just out from the factory. The firm is warning users to take extra precautions, and ensure virgin systems are malware free before connecting them to the Internet.

The Seattle press is writing about the FBI, which possesses a key to Windows:

Computer virus strikes U.S. Marshals, FBI affected

[...]

Law enforcement computers were struck by a mystery computer virus Thursday, forcing the FBI and the U.S. Marshals to shut down part of their networks as a precaution.

“Computer virus,” eh?

Does that affect “computers” or just those running the program called Microsoft Windows? Why do they constantly refuse to utter this more specifically? As Glyn Moody ranted the other day, “Conficker still infecting 50,000 PCs per day – http://bit.ly/JpG1a not true: it’s infecting 50K *Windows* machines per day”

Here is more about the FBI, courtesy of CNET (Associated Press does not wish to be cited).

The FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service were forced to shut down parts of their computer networks after a mystery virus struck the law-enforcement agencies Thursday, according to an Associated Press report.

What operating system? Again, no word. This is not the place to be agnostic if the public can be educated so as to make more informed decisions in the present or future. From The Register:

US military shows off hack-by-numbers battlefield gadget

As the US military strives to boost its ability to wage cyber warfare, it’s looking for ways to make it easier for non-expert soldiers on the front lines to wreak havoc on enemy networks.

Now we are getting somewhere.

Carla refutes some FUD about GNU/Linux:

Note the emphasis on vague scare tactics and the lack of any actual data or information. This Softpedia article also spreads Kaspersky fluff, which makes me sad because I like Softpedia’s Linux news and reviews a lot. It references this Kaspersky blog entry:

“At the moment we know of around 1000 cases of sites infected with Trojan-Downloader.JS.Iframe.auy. There are also several hundred servers infected with Trojan-Mailfinder.Perl.Hnc.a and Trojan-Dropper.Linux.Prl.a, which are actively spreading spam. The days of *nix systems not being targeted by malware writers are long gone.”

Uh huh. Again heavy on scare, light on details. How do these *nix boxes become infected in the first place? What *nix boxes where? Unlike Windows, Linux and Unix do not auto-execute any random executable that happens to wander by. I did both Web searches and searches on Symantec, F-Secure, and other vendors to learn more about these big scary *nix threats, and they don’t even include them in their threat lists. A Web search turns up the blog and some Russian sites. Searching Kaspersky’s own threat list does not find anything mentioned in the blog, except variants on Trojan-Downloader.JS.Iframe.auy:

More security news for (near) completeness:

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Microsoft’s promises should be voided given that Vista 7 might be even less secure than predecessors. There is a lot of evidence already.

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