07.05.12

Gemini version available ♊︎

Canonical and Red Hat Receive Negative Publicity Over Submissive UEFI Choices

Posted in Red Hat, Ubuntu at 11:20 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Fishy business

Thought

Summary: Following the FSF’s paper, criticism of Canonical and Red Hat becomes more commonplace

TECHRIGHTS spent a lot of time covering UEFI because it relates closely to technology rights, or lack thereof. Microsoft essentially gives the finger to Linux users, as one publication put it. The spin from Microsoft boosters [1, 2] sought to portray it as Linux-friendly even though it clearly is the opposite. This led to a blow against the GPLv3-licensed GRUB 2, which Canonical’s reaction in no way a solution but a compromise.

Here is a a good article about what Microsoft has done. It’s from a site about encryption:

A second Linux Distro has joined the Microsoft Secure Booth party. You see Microsoft has come up with what they are calling the UEFI Secure Boot. 61285 Secure boot is somewhat controversial in that once set up it will only allow signed versions of an OS to be installed. This means that if a computer is shipped from an OEM with Windows 8 and UEFI Secure Boot on you could not install a generic version of Linux or indeed any other OS including Windows 7 etc. This would effectively lock someone into using Windows 8 only on these devices. This block would include even downgrading your new system to Windows 7.

Now Microsoft is claiming that there might be a way to turn this off for x86 systems (ARM based systems will be locked to Windows RT), but it has prompted both Red Hat and Canonical to find a way to work within the UEFI Secure boot structure just in case. To do this they are getting a digital signature (from Verisign apparently) which will allow them to work with the UEFI Secure boot.

The FSF has already criticised Canonical, as we pointed out before. “Both the Linux Foundation and the Free Software Foundation voiced their own perspectives last fall when the issue first came up, but over the weekend the Free Software Foundation felt the need to speak out again in response to the approaches being taken by these two popular distributions,” notes the article. “In a nutshell, the advocacy group isn’t thrilled with what either distro has proposed, but it prefers the Fedora approach over Canonical’s solution. It also has a number of suggestions of its own.”

Pogson covered this too, as did some news sites and Groklaw. Here is a snippet from Pamela Jones’ words:

With regard to Fedora’s approach, Sullivan writes that while it’s a thoughful effort that results in GPL compatibility, trusting Microsoft is not an option: “Encouraging free software distributors and users to trust Microsoft or any other proprietary software company as a precondition to exercising their freedoms is simply not an acceptable solution.”

FSF has a number of suggestions going forward, including helping users to learn how to do what they can do to protect themselves, and it is also working with companies like Lemote, Freedom Included, ZaReason, ThinkPenguin, Los Alamos Computers, Garlach44, and InaTux to make computers available that are preinstalled with fully free GNU/Linux distributions.

The bottom line is, UEFI is an attack on computing freedom and it’s therefore unsurprising that it is not compatible with GRUB’s licence. The FSF writes the GPL to help defend against the empire of proprietary software companies. Playing nice with those companies is giving up, it’s defeatism.

“He [Bill Gates] is divisive. He is manipulative. He is a user. He has taken much from me and the industry.”

Gary Kildall

Share in other sites/networks: These icons link to social bookmarking sites where readers can share and discover new web pages.
  • Reddit
  • email

Decor ᶃ Gemini Space

Below is a Web proxy. We recommend getting a Gemini client/browser.

Black/white/grey bullet button This post is also available in Gemini over at this address (requires a Gemini client/browser to open).

Decor ✐ Cross-references

Black/white/grey bullet button Pages that cross-reference this one, if any exist, are listed below or will be listed below over time.

Decor ▢ Respond and Discuss

Black/white/grey bullet button If you liked this post, consider subscribing to the RSS feed or join us now at the IRC channels.

2 Comments

  1. mcinsand said,

    July 5, 2012 at 11:52 am

    Gravatar

    Were the Canonical and RedHat choices submissive or treasonous? To me, submissive is too mild of a word. MS put themselves into a mess by choosing a software design that makes security impossible, and UEFI is a marketing ploy to con people into thinking that security matters to them; if it mattered, kernel/OS, desktop, browser, etc… would go back to being discretely separate modules as required for basic security.

    But, dammit, now two companies have sold out to legitimize MS’ ploy in the eyes of the ignorant. I’ve been going through my options, and my top three are Slackware, Debian, and PCBSD. Deb is most appealing right now, although PCBSD is almost ridiculously easy to install and configure. My main issue with BSD, though, is the permissive license that fails to guarantee innovation reinvestment (commercialized application sources can’t become closed, with the GPL).

    Anyone else have rankings they’d like to share?

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    The word “treasonous’ is too strong a concept. But it disappointed me and many others.

DecorWhat Else is New


  1. Visual Proof That Twitter Very Likely Faked Its Magnitude the Moment Musk et al (KSA, Ellison and so on) Wanted to Buy

    There's a very compelling case for the allegation that Twitter is defrauding shareholders and participants in the platform; Twitter is a lot smaller than it used to be (fewer people are actively involved), it is losing money, and it is so desperate to be acquired that it's shamelessly faking traffic



  2. Links 27/05/2022: Wayland 1.21 Alpha, KDE Adds Flatpak and Snap Permissions to Discover

    Links for the day



  3. IRC Proceedings: Thursday, May 26, 2022

    IRC logs for Thursday, May 26, 2022



  4. Links 27/05/2022: Many More Microsoft Security Failures (and Spin/Lies)

    Links for the day



  5. Links 26/05/2022: KStars 3.5.9 and Chrome 103 Beta

    Links for the day



  6. Links 26/05/2022: AlmaLinux OS 9.0, MooseX::Extended for Perl Introduced

    Links for the day



  7. Links 26/05/2022: Kernel Events and Systemd-Free GNU/Linux Distributions

    Links for the day



  8. Links 26/05/2022: DuckDuckGo Increasingly Exposed as Microsoft Proxy

    Links for the day



  9. EPO Celebrates Software Patents Again, Dubbing Them 'Hey Hi' (AI) and '4IR'

    The ludicrous state of the EPO is demonstrated by yesterday’s puff piece about “four million” (merely requests for monopoly in Europe; most come from outside Europe) and L’Oréal, which claims to have “invented” something that was already done in the 1990s if not the 1980s



  10. [Meme] EPO's Monkey Business: Lowering the Patent Examination Bar

    As we shall show in a moment, EPO President António Campinos has lowered the quality of patents and applications; sooner or later he might outsource the job to ‘livestock’



  11. IRC Proceedings: Wednesday, May 25, 2022

    IRC logs for Wednesday, May 25, 2022



  12. Heads of Patent Offices Are Immune to Coronavirus

    The overconfident chiefs of the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and EPO might love speaking about COVID-19 (in relation to patents), but they do not take it seriously themselves



  13. Links 26/05/2022: Plex Finally on GNU/Linux

    Links for the day



  14. The General Consultative Committee of the EPO Exposes a Disaster and a Lack of Genuine Dialogue

    The General Consultative Committee (GCC) at the EPO deals with unlawful proposals from António Campinos (he’s happy to violate laws, constitutions, protocols, conventions, just like Benoît Battistelli did) and once again the abuses by managers is covered up; it’s as if the Office is run by unaccountable gangsters who arrogantly curse at everyone whilst insisting they’re the nicest people ever



  15. The Latest Letter to Josef Kratochvìl and the Heads of Delegation of the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation

    A week-old letter from the Central Staff Committee (CSC) to the Administrative Council of the European Patent Organisation highlights the nature of a crisis; there's no genuine dialogue and staff of the EPO (i.e. the scientists who do all the actual work) is constantly under attack



  16. [Meme] The Recordings Must Have Accidentally Been Lost While Breaking the Rules

    The EPO‘s “nicest” chief, Monopoly Tony, won’t even mention the recordings…



  17. Links 25/05/2022: ‘V Rising’ on GNU/Linux and Pearl Linux OS 11

    Links for the day



  18. Links 25/05/2022: Librem Tries Another Approach

    Links for the day



  19. IRC Proceedings: Tuesday, May 24, 2022

    IRC logs for Tuesday, May 24, 2022



  20. Links 24/05/2022: nginx-1.22.0 and WordPress 6.0

    Links for the day



  21. [Meme] Divine Protection

    You won’t find Monopoly Tony (António Campinos) wearing a mask at the EPO because the rules of the Office do not apply to him



  22. António Campinos and the Alicante Clique (EPO Management, Appointed Based on Nepotism Despite Lack of Qualifications) Nowadays Exploiting Kids for PR Charades

    The sick old habit of exploiting kids for Public Relations (PR) and marketing purposes is all too common at the EPO (they’re constantly exploiting “the children” to associate criticism of the EPO with demeaning the young and innocent), but the management — which enjoys nepotism and immunity rather than relevant skills — carries on today and it’s being called “inaugural”



  23. [Meme] Snake on a Plane

    The EPO‘s President ‘Monopoly Tony’ (António Campinos), whom you never see wearing a mask (none of the photo ops; he does not even socially distance himself from peers, he wears sneakers instead of masks) during the height of a pandemic, is the "f***ing president"; don’t tell him to wear one…



  24. Microsoft GitHub Exposé — Part XX — Entering Phase II

    We're about to resume the long-running series about the sick clique which ran GitHub until the assault on women became too much of a liability (among other wrongdoings and PR blunders)



  25. Links 24/05/2022: Fedora 37 Test Days and Tor Browser 11.0.13

    Links for the day



  26. Microsoft Vidal, as USPTO Director, Already Plays 'Political Cards' to Disguise and Deflect Away From the Corporate Agenda

    Microsoft Vidal, another corporate pawn in charge of the world’s most dangerous patent system, is using soft-spoken defle



  27. Links 24/05/2022: WAL-G 2.0

    Links for the day



  28. IRC Proceedings: Monday, May 23, 2022

    IRC logs for Monday, May 23, 2022



  29. Unethical Advertising, Published as So-called 'Articles', in CNX Software

    As we noted earlier this year, the CNX team is looking for money in the wrong places



  30. Links 23/05/2022: Broadcom to Buy VMware?

    Links for the day


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