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05.30.13

Another Reason to Avoid Hardware With UEFI

Posted in Hardware, Microsoft, Vista 8, Windows at 8:13 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Securing Windows monopoly, crushing competition

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Summary: How Windows refunds are further impeded by an antifeature in UEFI

Petter Reinholdtsen (Debian/SkoleLinux developer) has complained about UEFI ‘secure’ boot, stating, as many people including famous distribution developers before him did, that he could hardly install GNU/Linux on a new computer in spite of being a guru. He writes: “Two days ago, I asked how I could install Linux on a Packard Bell EasyNote LV computer preinstalled with Windows 8. I found a solution, but am horrified with the obstacles put in the way of Linux users on a laptop with UEFI and Windows 8.”

“I found a solution, but am horrified with the obstacles put in the way of Linux users on a laptop with UEFI and Windows 8.”
      –Petter Reinholdtsen
Meanwhile, says Pogson, a prominent 'secure' apologist distracts from the key issue (pun not intended) and focuses on the EULA. Pogson writes: “Well, at least those machines bearing “8″ aren’t taking over the world as earlier versions did. That makes the problem of Black Hole Booting smaller. Expect a lot of folks to return PCs they can’t use if their intention was to install GNU/Linux. When are retailers going to demand open hardware on PCs?”

The distraction comes from Dr. Garrett, who, in the words of iophk, highlights “Preventing the Windows Refund by disallowing non-acceptance of the EULA” (iophk adds that Garrett “is backing this change apparently”).

To quote Garrett himself, “So what’s the problem?

“Well, the Windows 8 setup environment doesn’t offer that reboot icon. Turn on a brand new Windows 8 system and you have two choices – agree to the Windows 8 license, or power the machine off. The only way to get into the firmware menu is to either agree to the Windows 8 license or to disassemble the machine enough that you can unplug the hard drive[1] and force the system to fall back to offering the boot menu.” (source)

This is not acceptable. It is yet another reason to antagonise or even boycott UEFI, which Intel is trying to push into more mobile devices (without boot menu) in guest posts like this new ones as well as an approach to critics. I shall relay my concerns to the UEFI Forum.

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