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04.11.14

Going Bankrupt (or Wasting Taxpayers’ Money) With Microsoft and PRISM

Posted in Microsoft at 9:46 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Everyone should get fired for buying into PRISM

PRISM

Summary: The leaks from Edward Snowden show that rather than “nobody gets fired for buying Microsoft” we should adopt the “everyone should get fired for buying Microsoft” (the seminal company behind PRISM)

According to this post from Lauren Weinstein, one New York-based store learned the hard way that it should have stayed away from Microsoft. “The store has now suddenly closed,” he writes. “Apparently the new Microsoft software didn’t work out as hoped, at least as far as the storefront is concerned.”

What kind of a store chooses to rely on Microsoft for business? Probably the type of store owned by people who grew up with nothing but Windows and are sometimes shocked (paralysis) into thinking that nothing except Microsoft would be suitable. We see a lot of the same thinking in governments where, unlike when it comes to a private business, buyers are liable to citizens who foot the bill. In Australia, for example, politicians or their ‘technical’ staff have just chosen to be spied on by the NSA through Microsoft. And believe it or not, they even pay Microsoft for this ‘privilege’ to be spied on (well, the taxpayers are paying, without even the opportunity to vote on this matter). How negligent — to put it politely — must the CIO(s) have been?

As iophk put it: “Now they lost control over their data. In the EU the exit cost is taken into account when assessing the TCO. Here it looks like it wasn’t. Queensland could have saved more and still kept their data if they had moved to Apache OpenOffice or to LibreOffice.

Politicians within and outside the US should never host anything with Microsoft, ever. Microsoft is collaborating with the NSA, which spies not only on government officials in ‘ally’ countries but also inside the United States (as it recently confirmed). Software like Skype is a spy and Microsoft’s E-mail hosting is known to be spied on by Microsoft for business reasons, not security reasons. It’s a crime, but nobody is in jail. It’s done in collusion with the state.

CIOs and business heads who choose Microsoft despite all that is known (especially after the NSA leaks) probably deserve to be fired. Watch how DPI giant BT (which also assists in drone assassinations) falsely claims access to Microsoft Azure to be “secure” (a ‘secure’ link to GCHQ, NSA, etc. through abusive monopolist Microsoft). This is PRISM in disguise of “security”.

Nobody should ever host anything at all on Microsoft servers. Those who do ‘on behalf’ of citizens (and at their expense) certainly don’t deserve to keep their jobs. They are aiding illegal surveillance and their choice is also technically unwise (which is another issue that we tackled in past years).

Microsoft: Let’s Talk About Heartbleed® (Reported by Our ‘Former’ Security Chief) While the World Migrates From XP to GNU/Linux

Posted in FUD, GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Windows at 8:43 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Looking through the tube

Summary: Government the only likely entity to exploit Heartbleed®, but Microsoft and its peripheral PR apparatus try to scare everyone away from GNU/Linux

A LOT of concerned people, including large businesses, are moving to GNU/Linux for improved security right now (I am aware of some businesses but cannot name them), bearing in mind that Windows XP is no longer secure even in Microsoft’s eyes. Microsoft put back doors in Windows (for governments), so when even Microsoft claims something to be not secure, then it should be ever more alarming.

We are still seeing many articles about migration from Windows XP to GNU/Linux, not just in blogs of GNU/Linux advocates [1,2,3] but also in Microsoft-friendly news sites [4], widely-distributed publications like The Economist [5] (typically GNU/Linux-hostile or just ignoring GNU/Linux), GNU/Linux-oriented sites [6,7], and the Linux Foundation [8]. There are other general news sites [9-12] that cover this (suggesting GNU/Linux as a replacement for XP) and on the other hand there are those in the GNU/Linux world who are apathetic about it [13]. The common theme, however, is rather clear. People are being advised to explore GNU/Linux and jump off the treadmill of Windows ‘upgrades’. Microsoft must be worried. There are many confirmatory indicators of this worry — ones that we covered before.

We recently saw a lot of FUD over GNU/Linux security coming from Microsoft-linked sources, basically inciting/creating unnecessary panic by twisting facts and never mentioning Microsoft’s security issues (some are there by design, like NSA back doors or even FBI entry points).

Someone who worked for the FBI (worse than the NSA by some criteria) and then Microsoft (the back doors partner of the NSA) then revealed Heartbleed®, on the very same date that Windows XP is officially dead. What’s the likelihood that this was a coincidence? Microsoft’s ‘former’ security chief sure helped distract from stuff like the articles about moving to GNU/Linux for security. If it was a stunt, then it sure worked like a charm.

Heartbleed® does not seem like the work of secret agencies [14], but it sure helps them a lot [15], undermining activism [16] and Free software [17], as well as security in Apple and Microsoft products (they use OpenSSL too and they still have no patches, unlike GNU/Linux distributions). Pay attention to how Microsoft boosters like Miguel de Icaza twist this to look like a problem only for GNU/Linux. Microsoft propagandist and partner Tony Bradley (he works with Microsoft) plants some FOSS-hostile articles to that effect [18] as well. Microsoft must be having a day field with its PR/propaganda agents. As we expected, Microsoft partners now spread articles full of FUD — stuff which was published in a timely fashion by a Microsoft-linked firm, exactly upon Windows XP EOL. Watch some timely new revisionism (PR) from Microsoft Peter, using false claims (changing history) to push people to ‘upgrade’ from XP to Vista 8. This is not journalism; it’s advertising from a Microsoft booster who infiltrated a news site. Many sites are still affected by Heartbleed®, but reports from Microsoft-friendly journalists (who were behind some of the previous security smears against GNU/Linux) exaggerate the numbers. At my job, for example, no Web site was found to be affected by Heartbleed® (one can check this online [19]). The main source of danger right now is government spies [20,21] (or government crackers). Those who understand the technical details [20] even guess that government actors may have played a role in putting the bug there [22]. The FSF responded by highlighting the fact that proprietary system have back doors by design [23] (the FSF says “Microsoft are even sharing bugs with others like the NSA without fixing them”) and other GNU/Linux-oriented sites did cover the incident, but not with an excessive sense of panic [24-29], unlike Gates-funded papers [30].

To summarise, what we are dealing with here is an incident where the firm of Microsoft’s ‘former’ security chief shares bugs with the whole world irresponsibly (many sites had not been secured by that time in which his firm decided to release details, exactly when XP hits EOL). And having checked customers’ systems overnight, I found that nothing was affected by this OpenSSL bug. Irresponsible reporting from Microsoft-friendly journalists (with history) claims — falsely — that 2/3 of the Web is affected. Talk about appalling FUD. Wow!

One sure thing is, Chromebook sales are not going to be stopped by it, not even by Microsoft's attack ads (hypocritical FUD is now central to Microsoft’s official strategy and there is no hiding it).

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Good News And Bad News Depending On Whether Or Not You Enslave People To Wintel
  2. OEMs Aren’t Going To Replace XP With GNU/Linux. Real People Have To Do That
  3. What To Do With XP PCs

    If you think you can’t do without XP, think again. I have not touched an XP machine or any other OS from M$ for years now because all my PCs run GNU/Linux. If you think you can’t do without some application that only runs on XP or any other OS from M$, think again. Many millions of users of GNU/Linux don’t have those problems that M$ causes: malware, spyware, re-re-reboots, and lock-in.

  4. Windows XP’s Demise Will Help Linux Leapfrog Mac OS X 10.9

    Linux is frequently touted as one of the most successful open-source projects ever. Since its release in the 90s, the versatile OS has gradually become more popular with users. With a 1.49% market share, Linux is now rated the third-most popular PC operating system after Windows and Mac OS X operating systems.

  5. End of the road for Windows XP

    But to what? For those determined to stay in the Microsoft camp, forget Windows 8 or 8.1. Not only do they demand too much in the way of hardware, both have been been written off as a debacle as bad as the Windows Vista disaster. With their touch-based design, they require users to do things differently from the way they are familiar with. Microsoft is now hurrying out Windows 9 in a bid to pre-empt a mass migration to Linux or Macintosh.

  6. A Beginners Guide for XP Users to Switch to Linux

    Microsoft has ended its support for Windows XP and most of you might not even care but for some of you who do care and understand the complications involved in using a discontinued piece of software, you are in for a change. You can either install already outdated Windows 7, no one’s favourite Windows 8 or you can join the elite group of Linux users by installing on of the many available flavours of Linux.

  7. Windows XP and the Changing Calculus of Technology Choice

    One reason technology choices are so difficult is technology is always a work in progress; your one choice has lasting consequences since the technology rarely ever lives on its own, and most good technology is never done — that is unless you’re Windows XP. As most of us know, Microsoft today is turning off support for Windows XP. That means that roughly 30 percent of all Windows users will cease to get security updates and other ongoing maintenance. Since hackers disproportionately target Windows products, this is a big deal.

  8. Replace the Retiring Windows XP with Linux
  9. Windows XP orphaned: 1/3 of computer users vulnerable

    RMS is the guru of computing freedom, and a great source. He started the “hack” movement as an outsider inside MIT during the Vietnam protesting era, and founded both the GNU software movement and the Free S/W Foundation. He seems (to me) to be highly-influenced by socialist ideals.

  10. Forget About Windows XP, Tranform Your Linux Mint in Windows 7

    In this case, Linux Mint 16 is the perfect candidate for a Windows 7 look-alike transformation and the Windows7 Pack (Cinnamon+ GTK3/2) theme works like a charm. You will have to move the files manually in the appropriate folders, but the themes should be easy to activate.

  11. Open Source Alternatives For Windows XP

    To simplify the downloading and installing, collections of these many software components, called “distributions“, are available ready for users to download and start using straight away.

  12. Windows XP Alternatives: Six Linux Distros to Replace Microsoft’s Ageing OS

    On Tuesday, Microsoft finally end support for one of its most successful operating systems, the 13-year-old Windows XP. Owing to this, there will no longer be any official security updates and bug fixes from the company, meaning those who continue to use the OS will be left vulnerable to security threats.

  13. Why I don’t care about the end of Windows XP

    Frankly, I’ve never liked Windows XP. I found the interface to be an eyesore way back when it was first released and using it never improved the experience. I’m very glad to see that it’s going away finally, it’s demise has been been long overdue. I’m rather surprised that it has hung on this long, given that it was never all that anyway. It’s almost become like some sort of a disease you can’t quite get rid of, it just goes on and on and on.

  14. Heartbleed coder: bug in OpenSSL was an honest mistake

    The Heartbleed bug in OpenSSL wasn’t placed there deliberately, according to the coder responsible for the mistake.

  15. The Real Threat From The Heartbleed Security Flaw Is The NSA

    “The best guess is that the only ones exploiting this bug are spy agencies, if anyone at all.”

  16. Why the Web Needs Perfect Forward Secrecy More Than Ever
  17. LibreOffice 4.2.3 arrives with Heartbleed fix
  18. Is open source to blame for the Heartbleed bug?
  19. Test Sites for Heartbleed OpenSSL Vulnerability
  20. Wild at Heart: Were Intelligence Agencies Using Heartbleed in November 2013?
  21. heartbleed vs malloc.conf
  22. Heartbleed

    At this point, the probability is close to one that every target has had its private keys extracted by multiple intelligence agencies. The real question is whether or not someone deliberately inserted this bug into OpenSSL, and has had two years of unfettered access to everything. My guess is accident, but I have no proof.

  23. Free Software Foundation statement on Heartbleed vulnerability
  24. FOSS Community Hustles to Fix Gaping Heartbleed Flaw
  25. Fedora status on “Heartbleed”
  26. Fedora releases openssl security updates
  27. The Internet Goes Nuts with OpenSSL Bug Today, Linux Systems Were Fixed Yesterday
  28. How to find out if your server is affected from Openssl Heartbleed vulnerability (CVE-2014-0160) and how to fix that
  29. Heartbeat SSL Flaw Puts Linux Distros at Risk
  30. Heartbleed: Hundreds of thousands of servers at risk from catastrophic bug
  31. Google jumps on Windows XP’s demise with Chromebook for business offer

    GOOGLE HAS BEEN QUICK to jump on the demise of Windows XP, and is looking to persuade businesses still running the operating system to buy Google Chromebooks instead.

Replicating the Destruction of Dual Boot (GNU/Linux) by Microsoft-Friendly UEFI Implementations

Posted in Antitrust, Hardware, Microsoft, Windows at 7:51 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Hammer

Summary: Reports of “loss of Linux dual-booting” due to Windows Update are investigated further; FSF award to Garrett faces opposition

IT WAS recently reported in Reddit that UEFI was used by Microsoft Windows to wipe out GNU/Linux. Windows Update rendered GNU/Linux unbootable and allegedly turned ‘secure’ boot on to achieve this.

According to this new analysis from Jamie the UEFI explorer, it’s not an isolated incident. He starts by stating: “I can finally report that yes, there is a problem — but it’s generally not as serious as has been reported.” He also writes: “While I found that I was able to ‘fix’ the loss of Linux dual-booting on both of my systems, I am NOT trying to say that everyone who has posted claims about dual-boot being ‘destroyed’ by Windows Update is wrong. I certainly have enough experience with UEFI boot configuration to know that all sorts of strange things are possible, and it may well be that some systems, with some configurations, really do get more seriously damaged by Windows Update than mine have. One very obvious example might be that the Linux items could get deleted from the boot object list. If that happened you would have to use efibootmgr to put them back again.”

But who would know how to do this and how many people would just turn away from GNU/Linux at this stage? This is why UEFI should face a boycott and antitrust complaints against Microsoft get bolstered. I wholeheartedly disgree with FSF for giving Garrett an award. This can be a PR disaster waiting to happen, a bit like Miguel de Icaza and Theo de Raadt and getting such an award before their FSF bashing. Apparently I am not alone in disagreeing with the FSF; Sam Varghese expressed similar concerns, having opposed ‘secure’ boot for quite some time along with many others. He writes: “The Free Software Foundation has given an annual award this year for work that enslaves people to the demands of Microsoft – something that flies in the face of all that the organisation has stood for since its founding.”

This has indeed been a bizarre move and it can help weaken existing complaints (in Europe) over Microsoft’s UEFI tricks.

Miguel ‘Advocates’ GNU/Linux by Bashing it Again

Posted in FUD, Microsoft, Mono at 6:51 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Miguel de Icaza tweet

Summary: Days after signing yet another alliance/partnership with Microsoft Miguel de Icaza shows the world just how much he ‘loves’ Free software

THERE IS already some (foreseen) Microsoft propaganda over an OpenSSL flaw. And as someone in the above thread points out: “Funny since openssl was patched in Linux in less than an hour and it affects Microsoft too, which doesn’t have a patch yet… Where is everyone screaming at Microsoft? Propaganda, propaganda everywhere!”

As we’ll show later today, a lot of anti-FOSS propaganda of this kind has come out and it typically comes from people who are professionally tied to Microsoft, such as Miguel de Icaza. Heck, even the firm that reported the bug is intrinsically tied to Microsoft.

Miguel de Icaza is promoting Microsoft again this week. He does not even hide it. He writes: “We are very excited about the release of [Microsoft] Roslyn, it is an amazing piece of technology and one of the most sophisticated compiler designs available. A great place to learn great C# idioms and best practices [5], and a great foundation for great tooling for C# and VB.”

Next time you hear of Miguel de Icaza remember that he is working with Microsoft, based on some of the latest news. Xamarin should be treated as nothing more than a department of Microsoft.

04.09.14

A Call to Ban/Stop Big ‘Patent Trolls’ Like Nokia, Microsoft, and Apple

Posted in Apple, Microsoft, Patents at 5:40 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Patent stooges

Summary: Reporting in corporate media generally lacks focus on patent abuse by large companies, but Topix has a long noteworthy article

PATENT coverage has been scarce here recently because corporations won. They warped the debate in such a way that almost no articles criticise software patents anymore; the focus has been shifted to small trolls and politicians are, accordingly, ignoring the big issue, instead pursuing fake ‘reforms’ that hardly address any concerns, other than the concerns of big corporations (it’s like Obama’s so-called ‘reform’ of the NSA). Here for a change is a good Topix article titled “How to Really Fix Patents – and Why Congress Is Unlikely to Do It” (via Glyn Moody).

The article says: “The total loss to the economy caused by junk patents far exceeds $29 billion per year when one takes into account that big companies act like patent trolls too, by obtaining junk patents to keep out their competitors.”

It also states that: “The real costs of junk patents are easy to imagine when you consider some of the egregious patents that should never have existed to begin with. Patent No. 5,851,117 was granted in 1998 to a company for using an illustrated book to teach janitors how to clean a building. Clearly that is not such an original idea that it deserves to be patented. Luckily the economic impact of that patent was likely very minimal.”

And finally: “Patent trolls should be dealt with, but if big companies are able to continue to obtain junk patents for things that are not inventions and then act like patent trolls, then they will be able to continue to corner markets and ensure that new emerging technologies can’t compete with them.”

We recently wrote about Apple's "holy war" against Linux/Android — a subject that was mentioned by a lot of media [1, 2, 3, 4]. Nokia‘s patent deal with Apple, which had already cross-licensed with Microsoft for quite a long time (we have written about this triangle for a number of years), helped show how this “holy war” was going on. This new article states that “Nokia makes up about 80% of them [...] the vast majority of licensing fees Microsoft collects — about $15 per device — comes from the Finnish company. Those fees are about to become an internal exchange once the acquisition deal closes between the two companies.”

The ultimate victim will be Android. They are working on it.

To make matters worse, Microsoft and Nokia feed Android-hostile patent trolls like MOSAID, passing patents for no purpose other than harassment (patent-stacking).

This is trolling. The European authorities have already warned/reprimanded Nokia.

What needs to change right now is the debate. We need to reject the idea that there is this thing called “patent trolls” which basically means small companies with patents and that this alone is the issue with patents. There are much bigger issues.

Miguel de Icaza and Xamarin Become More Tightly Integrated With Microsoft

Posted in Microsoft, Mono at 4:58 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Mole

Summary: Microsoft creates an alliance with the controversial firm of FOSS mole Miguel de Icaza while trying to openwash .NET (creating the illusion that it is “open”)

WE RECENTLY showed how the Microsoft press was openwashing .NET. It’s a PR charade. Watch this shameless new plug from Microsoft Mary at CBS/ZDNet/CNET (cross-posted in several CBS sites for increased exposure). It’s Microsoft evangelism disguised as journalism and there’s more of it at IDG. It should be remembered that .NET is proprietary. Nothing has really changed. Microsoft already controls a considerable chunk of Mono and now it’s trying to openwash .NET itself, presumably with help from Miguel de Icaza and other turncoats whom Microsoft Mary is naming. The goal is to confuse people and lead them to the misguided feeling that .NET is now “open” (to Windows) and is therefore on par with Java.

Last month there were reported of acquisition talks between Microsoft and Xamarin, which already receives funding from Microsoft people. Well, Microsoft has no need to buy them if they can be used as outsiders/proxies, a bit like Yahoo or Novell. So this news report [1] titled “Microsoft, Xamarin Form Open Source Tech Alliance” is not too shocking. It just helps show another step in alignment of those two companies. In practical terms, Xamarin is now serving Microsoft but it is not officially part of Microsoft.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Microsoft, Xamarin Form Open Source Tech Alliance; Miguel de Icaza Comments

    Microsoft and Xamarin have partnered to establish a technology consortium that aims to help developers build computing applications based on Microsoft’s .NET programming framework.

04.08.14

“Microsoft is Trying to Sabotage Linux” (AARD Returns)

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Virtualisation at 11:17 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Breaking the competition rather than competing

Summary: Microsoft’s Hyper-V is reportedly being used to cripple and marginalise — artificially — guests that are running GNU/Linux

MICROSOFT apparently has not gotten enough advantage with UEFI exclusion of GNU/Linux from new PCs. We recently learned that a lot of new computers (without Windows XP) will simply refuse to have GNU/Linux installed and/or running. Even some technical people in JoinDiaspora say that they are unable to install GNU/Linux on such computers (not OS-agnostic machines anymore, as per Microsoft’s manipulative legal requirements).

Adding insult to injury, Microsoft now uses Hyper-V, the proprietary hypervisor which is strictly attached to an NSA honeypot (Microsoft Windows), for something that resembles AARD. iophk called it “AARD again” and it should be treated as a serious antitrust violation.

Citing the original report [1], Susan Linton writes: “The Register is running an article explaining how Microsoft is trying to sabotage Linux.”

The article begins by stating that “Hyper-V was found to treat Linux guests as second-class citizens” and it should not be too shocking given that Hyper-V drivers for Linux were originally a GPL violation (Microsoft was forced to comply). This is one of the things that Microsoft paid Novell to help with (others being .NET, Moonlight/Silverlight, OOXML, patent FUD, and more).

With the death of Windows XP it is possible that the common carrier for desktops/laptops will soon be no more. FUD games like these ones are only to be expected from the thuggish, criminal company.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Hyper-V telling fibs about Linux guest VMs

    If Microsoft’s Hyper-V was found to treat Linux guests as second-class citizens, the resulting storm of controversy would probably generate enough heat and light to make a dent in some climate change models.

Press Advocates Migration From Windows XP to GNU/Linux, But Not Strongly Enough

Posted in GNU/Linux, Microsoft, Windows at 10:47 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Windows aging

Windows with shutters

Summary: The corporate press mentions the end of Windows XP (no more support) but rarely does it mention GNU/Linux; a migration to Free/libre software is simpler than commonly believed

THE apparent distraction efforts aside, today is the last day for Windows XP as a live operating system. In light of that serious event (relevant to many because Windows XP is still widely used), some articles don’t even mention GNU/Linux at all (see the comments, readers are not easily misled) and some provide only scarce coverage for remedies like Robolinux [1], despite an expensive press release [2,3] which was disseminated in various sites. We found only one article about Robolinux (there may be more, but they are not going ‘on the radar’).

This is rather disappointing. There are orders of magnitude (in terms of numbers) more articles about the Heartbleed® stunt (from Microsoft’s ‘former’ security chief) than about GNU/Linux as the logical route for computers that still run Windows XP. Users of these computers can use Wine or even the improved (but proprietary) versions of software that incorporates Wine. Inside a company they can rely on remotely-accessed application servers running Windows for troublesome applications, with rdesktop/vnc for remote access from GNU/Linux desktop (that’s what one can do at the worst scenarios) and Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols (SJVN) shows how trivially it’s done (very visual).

What we are hoping to find is that more people follow advice which recommends at least mentions migration to GNU/Linux now that Windows XP is unsupported [4-9] (there ought to be be more coverage like this). Putting the derogatory phrase aside, right now there is a big opportunity for GNU/Linux on the desktop [10], and not just because of Chrome OS (which is a GNU/Linux distribution but not a freedom-respecting one). People can now swap a PC running Windows XP with a shiny new Chromebook for just $99 and there are many options when it comes to Chromebooks [11]. Whatever people choose, they need to escape the trap of PRISM (mass surveillance) and proprietary software. BSD too is an option.

Related/contextual items from the news:

  1. Robolinux 7.4.2 Distro Can Keep Windows XP Running Inside Forever Without Viruses or Malware

    Robolinux, a fast and easy to used Linux distribution based on Debian, has just received another major update, raising the version number to 7.4.2.

  2. Solution for 500 Million Windows XP Users Who Do Not Upgrade to 7 or 8
  3. Solution for 500 Million Windows XP Users Who Do Not Upgrade to 7 or 8

    Robolinux, founded in 2011, invented and has released “Revolutionary Stealth VM” so you can run Windows XP or 7 inside all Linux Mint OS Editions or all Ubuntu Versions and Derivatives Virus Free for as long as you want to without the need for Microsoft security updates or anti virus anti malware software.

  4. The end of Windows XP: Is it time to give Linux a try?

    This week, Microsoft ends free support for Windows XP, cutting off the supply of security updates and bug fixes to anyone unwilling to pay the $200 per desktop fee MS is asking for extended support.

    XP machines aren’t just going to explode at midnight on 8th April but with hackers and malware authors already comfortable with the antiquated OS, it won’t be long before some new exploit is discovered that will never be fixed. In short, if you value security then it makes sense to stop using XP.

  5. For HTPC folks, XBMC recommends an upgrade from Windows XP to Linux

    It’s doubtful there are many people out there at this point that don’t already know that support for Windows XP will come to an end tomorrow, April 8th. Despite that, a number of individuals and businesses will continue to run the operating system.

    This doesn’t likely apply to those maintaining an HTPC, as this tends to be a more geek-savvy set, but no doubt a few are out there. For those users, XBMC has passed its judgment, and the verdict is Linux.

  6. Why so much fuss over Windows XP’s expiry?

    Other than Windows, users and companies could look at Linux versions that run many Internet servers and those in companies. GNU/Linux is also at the foundation of Google Inc’s Android mobile OS.

    Linux distributions include Ubuntu, Linux Mint, Elementary, Zorin and Lububtu. Ubuntu 12.04, for instance, comes pre-installed with the LibreOffice suite—a Microsoft Office equivalent. However, migrating applications from Windows XP to a non-Windows (read Linux) platform is easier said than done. But then, Linux distributions are free.

  7. Microsoft XP users can turn to Linux as alternative

    Microsoft’s decision to stop providing technical support for Windows XP after Tuesday has caused a great deal of confusion and consternation among the millions who still use the trusty old operating system. I’ve opined that there’s no reason to ditch Windows XP, which will continue to work as it always has, and that you can safeguard its security by installing a good antivirus/antimalware program.

    However, there is another solution that is faster and more secure than Windows XP – or any other version of Windows. It’s Linux, the long-suffering stepchild of the PC industry.

  8. Linux to the rescue! Windows XP support discontinued today

    Today, as Microsoft discontinues support for Windows XP, a 12 year old operating system, users all over the world find themselves with only a few options to choose from as they move on. It’s not surprising that Microsoft encourages users to migrate to Windows 8.1, but of course, there are other alternatives. The best one by far is Linux. With over 100 distributions, Linux not only offers flexibility, but also reliability and support.

  9. Death of Window XP Is a Golden Opportunity for Linux

    Microsoft’s Windows XP dies on April 8, and I will not be among those who mourn its loss. The sad part about the death of XP is that those who still run it might not even realize that their operating system is now dead.

  10. Will it ever be the year of the Linux Desktop?

    It used to be a rallying cry, then it turned into speculation and finally it became a joke: That the next year, or the one after that, or very soon at least, would be “the year of the Linux desktop”. Even the meaning of the term has changed a bit, depending on the time and the publication. Maybe it means the year when Linux will be a majority operating system on desktop computers. Maybe it means that Linux accounts for a significantly increased share of the market.

    [...]

    But as I have been using Linux in the past several years, it has increasingly occurred to me: We’re at a point where we have a large number of incredibly polished distributions available. You can run a Linux system for a standard user without barely ever touching the terminal. There’s a wealth of software, both applications and games available, most hardware works without any worry, and the days of manually editing xorg.conf, our old best friend, are pretty much gone.

  11. Samsung Chromebook 2 set to square off against Intel-powered Chrome OS devices

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