EditorsAbout the SiteComes vs. MicrosoftUsing This Web SiteSite ArchivesCredibility IndexOOXMLOpenDocumentPatentsNovellNews DigestSite NewsRSS


Microsoft’s Latest Anti-GNU/Linux Moves Are Sign of Agony

Posted in Antitrust, Asia, DRM, FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Vista, Vista 7, Windows at 5:40 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

“I’d put the Linux phenomenon really as threat No. 1.”

Steve Ballmer, 2001

Summary: Microsoft goes ever more aggressive against the growth of GNU/Linux on the client side

LESS than a year ago we showed how Microsoft actively fought GNU/Linux at Wal-Mart, later remarking that similar tactics may have been used against OEMs that carry GNU/Linux on sub-notebooks. Now we find these leaked pages which show very vividly how Microsoft is training Best Buy staff to vilify GNU/Linux. Here is the opening statement.

So I work at Best Buy (insert boos and hisses) and I was doing some Microsoft ExpertZone training.

Well, the new one for Windows 7 allows me to get a $10 retail copy of Windows 7 after completing the courses. So I figured I’d get it and sell it for a quick buck. Now, during my training modules, a “Linux vs Windows 7″ module appeared.

Here is just one of the screenshots (down-scaled).

Anti-Linux shot

One of our readers laughs at what he calls “Vista 7 training”, adding that “Vista 7 provides none of the four promised things, choice, compatibility, familiarity or peace of mind. It’s a DRM upsell with a minor facelift that blows your old software away and confuses the crap out of the user for zero security gain.” Exposing and calling it what it really is, this reader summarises the situation as follows: “Windows 7 propaganda is laughed at in public by Best Buy employees.” Here is a Slashdot submission which calls it “Anti-Linux Training at Best Buy”:

Best Buy is one of the few national computer retailers that has survived Vista and the recession. Here’s how Microsoft is training their employees. It’s like a throwback from the badly discredited “Get the Facts” campaign.

“Microsoft themselves try to teach Best Buy employees to lie about Windows 7, and are called on it in public,” he adds.

Another person, Oiaohm, writes in our IRC channel: “Notice something funny about that training. Microsoft is mentioning Linux. You only do that if you fear your competitor, otherwise you just talk about your own product and hope the staff don’t know about the other.”

“Microsoft is mentioning Linux. You only do that if you fear your competitor, otherwise you just talk about your own product and hope the staff don’t know about the other.”
“I hope this guy has covered his identity,” says the former person, as “Best Buy and Microsoft will fire him for sharing [...] employees are fired for such things. There are plenty of people in line for the job. [...] Vista pushed many retailers into bankruptcy. Windows 7 will challenge what’s left. Best Buy is going the full Microsoft route and will pay a terrible price. They think they have it easy because no one else is left selling computers brick and mortar.”

The latter reader adds: “The best part of it [is] Microsoft screwed up. Always a percentage of people giv[en] a briefing will question it.”

“The question is,” he concludes, “will Microsoft have to cut their price before release? Microsoft has dumped out more free copies of Windows 7 than any other version of Windows. And it’s not even released yet.”

Well, guess what Microsoft is doing right about now? It is offering small bribes (in the form of Vista 7 licences) to people who help Microsoft hype up the release. There is already a parody about it and another rather sarcastic take.

So lets now look at the party idea. http://www.engadget.com/2009/09/02/get-windows-7-[...] and see the title “Get Windows 7 Ultimate for free…..by throwing a party”. They say:

Sure, you’ll have to suck up your pride and invite your friends to a party with a theme like “setting up with ease” or “family friendly fun,”


Windows 7 party time? In my opinion the only thing to celebrate will be the end of the hangover from the Vista one. Will history be repeated with 7? Dip into your wallet and find out!

Incentives for people to hype up Vista 7? We have seen that before.

Going back to the Best Buy folly, Microsoft is clearly building an army of Microsoft salesmen even in other companies, not just Microsoft Stores. It’s a very medieval approach where suppression of minds and conformity are a live-or-die crossroad. In addition to obedient salespeople, Microsoft is now recruiting marketing people to throw house parties for a piece of software. How pathetic is that? Does anyone remember the “Show Us Your Wow” campaign that Bill Gates was hyping up? They called for contributions from volunteers who would hype up Vista, only to take down the “Show Us Your Wow” Web site a short time later (the contributions all vanished along with it).

Microsoft is bordering the edges of the realm of grassroots (ethical) and verges AstroTurfing yet again. Let’s remember yesterday's Vista 7 article/advert from The Register.

In more uplifting news about GNU/Linux, despite attempted derailing by Microsoft, GNU/Linux makes big strides in Russian education:

60 Thousand Russian Teachers Will Learn Linux by the End of 2009


As part of the initiative, Russian schools have already received CDs with Linux and other open-source tools distribution kits so that such solutions could be installed even in the schools with no broadband internet access. But of course such a large-scale deployment is not that easy to carry out without help of qualified professionals who can make it possible.

Russia also investigates Microsoft for misconduct while this new report from Business Week says that “even the software giant [Microsoft] has tried to tamp down expectations for the new operating system.”

“Businesses will all but ignore Windows 7 and most uptake will come from consumers.”
“In other words,” explains one person in USENET, “Windows 7 will be another dud and its release will NOT result in another PC upgrade cycle. Businesses will all but ignore Windows 7 and most uptake will come from consumers. This would be disastrous for Microsoft’s credibility in the marketplace.”

Going a little sarcastic, he adds: “I wonder what Microsoft will come up with after the failure of Windows 7, a Windows XP Second Edition? I’m pretty sure another incremental Vista update won’t cut it with Wall Street so they’ll have to try something radical. How about porting the Windows UI to Linux or (more likely) FreeBSD? Might work, but far from certain.”

In exchange for these blows of reality, the Microsoft crowd strikes back by attacking GNU/Linux. Watch this one for example. It is the second such attack (almost identical) from the same author this week. We wrote about the first one right here. The author is collaborating with Microsoft (by his own admission) and he has a pattern of attacking Free software and GNU/Linux. Attacks on GNU/Linux are typically based on false market share statistics, whose connection to Microsoft we wrote about in:

  1. Net Applications Has Former Microsoft Employee, Also a Microsoft Investor?
  2. Three New Articles Question Net Applications’ Integrity
  3. Net Applications: the Big Lie, Boosted by IDC|IDG et al
  4. Summary: Lies, Damn Lies and Net Applications (Fake ‘Statistics’)

According to statistics from one other source, GNU/Linux carries on gaining market share whereas OS X remains quite stagnant. Microsoft’s very own statistics (see Ballmer’s presentation slide below) show that GNU/Linux exceeds Apple in terms of market share on the desktop. Microsoft also considers GNU/Linux — not Apple — the #1 rival. It has repeatedly admitted this (even openly because it must) for many years. Linux has partly won the embedded market and the servers, but these days, desktop opportunities are within sight too.

Ballmer's slide on Macs and GNU/Linux
Steve Ballmer’s presentation slide
from 2009 shows GNU/Linux as bigger than Apple on the desktop

Share this post: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Digg
  • del.icio.us
  • Reddit
  • co.mments
  • DZone
  • email
  • Google Bookmarks
  • LinkedIn
  • NewsVine
  • Print
  • Technorati
  • TwitThis
  • Facebook

If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

Pages that cross-reference this one


  1. maxstirner said,

    September 5, 2009 at 5:10 am


    Great laugh that Vista7 vs Linux training campaign.. “Familiarity/Choice/Peace of Mind”? Just what I was looking for in an expensive operating system. I mean who cares about speed, stability and security? Certainly not MS customers, who have proven time and again to prefer bloat over performance!

  2. Yuhong Bao said,

    September 5, 2009 at 5:44 pm


    “One of our readers laughs at what he calls “Vista 7 training”, adding that “Vista 7 provides none of the four promised things, choice, compatibility, familiarity or peace of mind. It’s a DRM upsell with a minor facelift that blows your old software away and confuses the crap out of the user for zero security gain.”
    “zero security gain”, “none of the four promised things”, well, I would not go that far.
    “Exposing and calling it what it really is, this reader summarises the situation as follows: “Windows 7 propaganda is laughed at in public by Best Buy employees.”
    Agreed, I can’t access the images right now, but yes this is indeed not only Windows propaganda, but Linux FUD too.

    Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    Here you can find Microsoft’s internal anti-Linux presentation.

  3. Yuhong Bao said,

    September 6, 2009 at 2:18 am


    “Vista pushed many retailers into bankruptcy. ”
    I would not go that far. I know the real reasons why Circuit City and CompUSA ended up being bankrupt, and they are mostly unrelated to Vista.

    twitter Reply:

    It is hard to say what the real reasons are because people who cite Vista Failure are punished. When DSG blamed Vista for $40 million in losses, the CEO was hastily replaced. Other evidence of Vista harming computer sales comes from Peter Su, chairman of Taiwanese memory company Transcend, who has been persistent in his claims [2]. You don’t have to read about M$ layoffs and other financial problems to know that Vista was a massive technical and sales failure, just remember all the $500 Vista laptops that flooded the market before netbooks arrived. Note that DSG and Transend problems happened before the current “reccesion” and can only be attributed to Vista Failure. If you have links to CompUSA and Circuit City opinions please share them. In the mean time, it is perfectly reasonable to assume that the same over production and poor sales attributed to Vista happened the same way at all retailers.

    Yuhong Bao Reply:

    I am not familar with DSG and Transend, but thanks for pointing them out.
    Also, see my talk about this with Diablo-D3 on IRC :

What Else is New

  1. Links 22/10/2016: Deus Ex for GNU/Linux, Global DDoS (DNS)

    Links for the day

  2. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC ‘Study’: Survey Comparison Shows Serious Deterioration and Efforts by PwC to Disguise the Truth

    The latest output from PwC turns out to be even worse than initially thought, indicating that not only did it find a degradation in the EPO but also attempted to hide/obscure it

  3. EPO Teaser - The "Iberian Connection" - Some Photos of García-Escudero and His Royal/Government Connections

    A look at the undeniably close connections between Mr. García-Escudero and the most powerful people in Spain

  4. Disruption to Site's Service

    A technical note about why Techrights has not been publishing many articles recently

  5. Links 21/10/2016: MPV 0.21, Mad Max for GNU/Linux

    Links for the day

  6. EPO Caricature: Battistelli's High Five

    Another cartoon about the sad state of the EPO

  7. Battistelli Ruins Not Only the EPO But Also the Whole of Europe By Ushering in Software Patents That Patent Trolls Love So Much

    Battistelli's bad leadership at the EPO threatens to bring to Europe all the ills and menaces of the patent system in the United States

  8. EPO Spokesman Lies to IP Watch in Order to Save Face and Save the King (Battistelli)

    Rewriting history (revisionism) regarding Battistelli and what was demanded amidst abusive behaviour from him

  9. Unitary Patent (UPC) is Dead, But 'Managing IP' and Selfish Patent Law Firms Still Try to Resurrect It

    The latest attempts to shore up the Unitary (or Unified) Patent Court and who's behind it other than the usual suspects

  10. Links 20/10/2016: Linux 4.10 Preview, ONF and ON.Labs to Merge

    Links for the day

  11. Battistelli-Commissioned PwC 'Study': The Raw Outcome Shows Distortion of the Facts at the EPO's Notorious 'Social Conference'

    Results of the Staff Survey carried out by PwC, in order to provide some propaganda for Battistelli's expensive Social Conference

  12. Addendum: EPO's Alberto Casado Cerviño, WIPO's Francis Gurry, and EUIPO's Archambeau

    Photos taken as part of an IP event which took place in Riga (Latvia) in March 2015

  13. Worrisome Connections Between EPO VP2 Alberto Casado Cerviño and Patricia García-Escudero Márquez

    Exploring the potential conflicts of interests implicating the EPO's Boards of Appeal Committee

  14. Site's Infrastructure Under Attack and Upgrades Ahead of Major New Publications

    Protections for the Web site have been improved and capacity increased in order to avoid or at least prepare for another week of abusive/spam traffic

  15. Team Battistelli's Conspiracy Theory: SUEPO is Behind Everything, EPO Management is Trying to Tell the Media

    Attempts to blame SUEPO, the staff union of the EPO, even though SUEPO has nothing to do with articles that are critical of the EPO while many thousands of EPO employees are disgruntled

  16. Links 19/10/2016: Canonical Livepatch Service, Plasma Plans

    Links for the day

  17. The 'Sarah Sharps' of Microsoft: Not the Kind of Scandal the Media Cares Enough to Write About

    Another example of the large (industrial) scale of sexual discrimination at Microsoft -- a company that tries to advertise itself as diverse or tolerant and stigmatise Free/Open Source software (FOSS) as intolerant and/or not diverse

  18. EPO Caricature: EQE Questions

    The latest EPO cartoon, this time about European qualifying examination (EQE)

  19. The Long History or Seeds of Control by Fear and Punishment at the EPO

    The latest hogwash from Team Battistelli (Pinocchio), the latest instance of software patents promotion by EPO Principal Director, and an old (decade-old) nugget of information from the Forum for Principal Directors

  20. Subject of the European Patent Office's Abuses Raised in European Parliament by Ulrike Müller (ALDE)

    A local copy of a bunch of questions asked less than a month ago by Ulrike Müller at the European Parliament, regarding the unacceptable state of affairs at the European Patent Office (EPO)

  21. French Article About the EPO "Crisis"

    Le Monde, which covered EPO suicides and nervous breakdowns a year and a half ago, revisits the subject

  22. Battistelli Wants Us to Believe a Patent Office in a Freefall (EPO) is “Stronger and More Sustainable”

    Still in denial (or self-deluding for self indulgence), Battistelli writes about the EPO as though everything is rosy and people are happy

  23. Leaked Documents Shed More Light on What Happened to Alison Brimelow and How Battistelli Rose to Power

    How Battistelli's (almost) all-male (and all-white, mostly French) management came into being, not too long after Ms Alison Brimelow got elbowed out the Office

  24. Leaked: Outcomes of 149th Administrative Council's Meeting at the European Patent Organisation

    The raw details or a summary thereof, based on the above which serves to confirm what we wrote about several days ago, right after the quarterly meeting had ended

  25. Danish Press Coverage of the European Patent Office and the Problems Explored by Techrights

    Jesper Kongstad does virtually nothing to deny the arguments (or "accusations") and instead alludes to the style of the writings about him

  26. Links 18/10/2016: Release Candidate of Leap 42.2, Looking Ahead at GTK4

    Links for the day

  27. Links 17/10/2016: JS Foundation, Ubuntu 17.04 Named ‘Zesty Zapus’

    Links for the day

  28. EPO Updates: Battistelli in Trouble, Grossenbacher and Battistelli Having a Fight, EPO Doubles Down on Željko Topić

    Interesting updates from the European Patent Office (EPO), where things have taken a turn for the worse for Battistelli while Željko Topić secures an extension of his notorious contract

  29. EPO Social Conference Another Example of Astronomical Waste of Money by Benoît Battistelli

    Having paid the media and attempted to scare/intimidate staff into silence (even among one another), Battistelli now pays some firms to lie for him and present the lies while staff representatives are blocked from entering the presentation

  30. As Expected, Benoît Battistelli Puts Longtime Ally Roland Grossenbacher on Top of Boards of Appeal

    Benoît Battistelli's predecessor Roland Grossenbacher, who has a track record of protection and support for Battistelli (no matter the magnitude of abuses), reportedly takes a key position with Battistelli's approval, debunking the notion that the appeal boards will enjoy greater (perceived) independence from the Office


RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channel: Come and chat with us in real time


Recent Posts