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07.09.10

“In Soviet Russia, Code Opens Microsoft”

Posted in Asia, Europe, Microsoft, Security at 4:19 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Medvedev and Windows
Credit: kremlin.ru, modified with permission.

Summary: Microsoft lets the secret services access source code of Windows, but members of the public are not permitted to know what their own computers are doing

Medvedev is looking for help from Microsoft and in the process he receives a copy of Vista 7 source code: [via]

Microsoft has signed a deal to open its Windows 7 source code up to the Russian intelligence services.

This will make the secret flaws easier to exploit, which in turn puts at risk everything that uses or relies on Windows, even patients in the UK (due to the Microsoft-NHS relationship, which may be costing billions). It’s similar over at the MSBBC, whose online presence is fortunately being reduced (what’s less fortunate is that Murdoch is trying to take over more of the BBC’s competition in the UK).

The BBC’s governing body has essentially approved a 25 percent cut in the broadcaster’s online budget.

The BBC Trust said it endorsed the “concept” of the cuts, which will see the broadcaster halve the number of pages running on the extensive www.bbc.co.uk site, and could see up to a quarter of online staff lose their jobs. It said it was now awaiting more specific plans.

The news comes as the Trust rejected plans to close BBC 6 Music, an eagerly-supported specialist music radio station.

There are 29.5 million unique UK visitors every week to the BBC website. BBC director general Mark Thompson said in March that the broadcaster needed to focus on quality instead of attempting “to do everything”, but he insisted the website plans did not mark a “retreat from digital”.

It is difficult to forget how the MSNBC made the taxpayers’ media player Windows-only. Only after massive backlash did the BBC start looking at Silverlight, which seems to be a niche product that even MSNBC won't touch. The MSBBC and MSNBC both ended up using Flash and Shivraj Singh Dabi has this new “Flash Vs Silverlight” comparison. Here is the first point Shivraj raises:

Silverlight is missing Linux support, so people using Linux machine cannot run it on their machines and will have to stick to Windows and MAC OS.

Shivraj then takes a cheap shot at GNU/Linux (utter lies). Moonlight is hardly a substitute by the way.

But anyway, going back to the original point, if Microsoft makes source code available to Russia’s KGB equivalent, it should make that same source code accessible to everyone. Code which is not open to scrutiny is bound to have more flaw that nobody can mend and secret services can exploit more easily. Windows is about authority, not autonomy.

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A Single Comment

  1. Jose_X said,

    July 9, 2010 at 11:36 pm

    Gravatar

    If Microsoft showed anyone in Russia *all* the code, you’d find Windows clones up and down main street Moscow. Plus, the OS can update itself after it has started running and changed it’s data around. And the actual update can come in pieces across many bits of updates.

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