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FSF Attacks Windows 7's "Sins" In New Campaign 926

Posted by samzenpus
from the a-long-way-to-absolution dept.
CWmike writes "The Free Software Foundation today launched a campaign against Microsoft Corp.'s upcoming Windows 7 operating system, calling it 'treacherous computing' that stealthily takes away rights from users. At the Web site Windows7Sins.org, the Boston-based FSF lists the seven 'sins' that proprietary software such as Windows 7 commits against computer users. They include: Poisoning education, locking in users, abusing standards such as OpenDocument Format (ODF), leveraging monopolistic behavior, threatening user security, enforcing Digital Rights Management (DRM) at the request of entertainment companies concerned about movie and music piracy, and invading privacy. 'Windows, for some time now, has really been a DRM platform, restricting you from making copies of digital files,' said executive director Peter Brown. And if Microsoft's Trusted Computing technology were fully implemented the way the company would like, the vendor would have 'malicious and really complete control over your computer.'"
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FSF Attacks Windows 7's "Sins" In New Campaign

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  • by dnaumov (453672) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:40AM (#29213563)
    And then they wonder why noone is taking the FSF seriously. Thankfully, they are not representative of the open source movement.
    • by BerntB (584621) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:46AM (#29213607)
      I understand your irritation -- FSF present Microsoft's standard behavior as if it were news. Wasted my time checking it out, too.
      • by shentino (1139071) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:01AM (#29213717)

        On the other hand, why should we let microsoft get away with being evil even if it's the status quo?

        Would you let a polluter who has polluted for years get a break when you catch them doing something?

        In short, what I'm saying is, that evil shouldn't be protected by a grandfather clause.

        • by thisnamestoolong (1584383) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @07:40AM (#29214629)

          On the other hand, why should we let microsoft get away with being evil even if it's the status quo?

          Would you let a polluter who has polluted for years get a break when you catch them doing something?

          In short, what I'm saying is, that evil shouldn't be protected by a grandfather clause.

          I don't think the complaint here is with the FSF calling out Microsoft on their nasty behavior, I doubt many on /. would object to such things -- I think the objection is more to the shrill, get off my lawn approach that FSF is taking to it. The '7 Sins' come across as being extremely overhyped, whiny, and pathetic. To go with your polluter analogy, this is like saying that one polluter in Kansas (or Redmond) is going to destroy the whole planet. They are most certainly doing something wrong, and deserve to be taken to task for it -- but by making over the top and shrill arguments against them you really undermine your own case and force people to tune out.

      • by impaledsunset (1337701) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:05AM (#29213751)

        Not everybody is aware of the "Microsoft's standard behaviour", and not everybody is realizing it is an issue. So FSF are starting a campaign that raises awareness of the issues. It might have wasted _your_ time, but that doesn't matter. It's not aimed at you.

    • by ciderVisor (1318765) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:56AM (#29213677)

      Thankfully, they are not representative of the open source movement.

      Indeed. They're representatives of the Free Software movement; the clue's in the title.

      However, while we know this, and in spite of all Stallman's protests over nomenclature, there are still many, many geeks who don't know about (or even care about) the distinction. What chance they have with Windows users (even geeky Windows users) should be minimal to the point of insignificance.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by flameproof (1460175)
        A Windows Geek? No Such Animal. "Windows Guru", sure - since that conjures up an image of a half-baked, long-haired hippie smoking a hookah who makes seven figures a year. I'll even give you a "Windows Tekkie", because of all the poor suffering IT peoples out there who wish-to-god they'd planted their college loans on English Lit, PoliSci or Phys Ed now that they're IRL. Perhaps there are a few "Windows Wizards" who actually understand the correct ordering of services, or maybe a "Windows Safari Guide"
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Epsillon (608775)
      Why the hell is the parent marked troll? He (apologies, gender doesn't convey well in handles) is quite right that the Free Software and Open Source movements are two separate entities, although their communities often overlap. RMS himself tries his hardest to disassociate the two. And yes, some of us can see past the MS hatred to the zealotry that lies beneath, then end up questioning what the FSF's real motives are.

      WGA DOES NOT examine the contents of your hard drive. It simply compares the installation
    • by lwsimon (724555) <lyndsy@lyndsysimon.com> on Thursday August 27, 2009 @09:38AM (#29215869) Homepage Journal

      I'm forced to agree.

      I'm the biggest Linux fanboi you'll ever meet, but I can't stand this twisted quasi-communist propaganda put out by the FSF. Windows is a proprietary product from a private concern - if you don't like it, don't use it. It is the standard OS because it fills most peoples' needs in the most painless way available. *For most people*, Windows is a better decision than Linux.

      Not a single on of their "sins" is immoral or unjust. If you don't like the product - fine - you're free to move to Linux, OSX, BSD, or any of the myriad other minor players.

      FWIW, my main PC runs ArchLinux most of the time. I'm a Vi user, and I use ScrotWM as a window manager. I don't have KDE or Gnome installed, as I've no need for a fancy GUI. I've also got Windows 7 on another partition, and I have to say - most of the time, if I just need to jump online, I boot to Windows.

  • by QuantumG (50515) * <qg@biodome.org> on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:40AM (#29213565) Homepage Journal

    Thanks Microsoft.. I hope Win7 is as successful as Vista.

  • by Shrike82 (1471633) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:43AM (#29213577)

    Hasn't every previous version of Windows been guilty (or at least accused) of these very same "sins"?

    Besides, I would imagine that the majority of Windows users won't ever see or hear of this campaign anyway, your average PC World customer won't have a clue what free software is, what DRM is, and most probably don't even know that there are alternative operating systems available anyway. My parents, parents-in-law, my siblings.....hell just about everybody I know that doesn't work in IT. Perhaps if the FSF could get some TV advertising...

    • by damburger (981828) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:02AM (#29213725)
      It is an awareness campaign, isn't it? Yes, Windows has always been guilty of these things to some extent - but most Windows users don't know about them. The fact is, the FSF are still a very marginal voice within the whole community of PC users (outside professionals and nerds, most people don't know who they are or what they stand for). If they want to raise their profile, they are going to have to repeat a lot of things that may be obvious to you or I, and keep repeating them lots. I believe PR types call it 'staying on message'
  • by NervousNerd (1190935) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:44AM (#29213601) Journal
    I've always wondered if the FSF was actually somehow on Microsoft's payroll. They' sure as hell aren't doing free software/open source any good. If anything, they're making people want to avoid using open source thanks to Rick Stallman's antics.
    • by Kjella (173770) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @08:07AM (#29214861) Homepage

      FSF won the hearts and minds of the developers writing GPL code. Oh sure, there might have been some open source at Berkeley with BSD, but I'm sure many had improvements they kept to themselves. Either because they didn't want to give it away to everyone or as proprietary forks or both. Same goes for companies, just recently there was a big paper on all the contributors to the Linux kernel. I think the breakdown for BSD would look quite different.

      However, as a public figure for people just using the system RMS is terrible. He'd do much better if he could just talk FLOSS software up without talking closed source software down so extremely. Sure you may not modify the software but you do have choices like voting with your wallet, and if there's noone worthy of your money then not buying at all. There's monopolies but they're bad under any circumstances and they're the exceptions to the rule.

      For some things, yes there are good points about open formats, forced upgrades and future access. But in many cases there's also not really. I buy closed source games which can have bugs that I'd like to fix in an ideal world, but I can't. But it's somewhat like going to a restaurant, either you return it to the kitchen or you eat it. RMS insists I'm not free unless I get to go into the kitchen and give the dish a do-over. Don't tip, don't return and give bad reviews seems to work for the rest of the world.

      I really like the idea of the GPL, share alike and how you get incremental improvement. If a software does 98% of what you want you can supply the 2%. Then it becomes someone else's 98% project. Slowly you end up with a system that can run on everything from cell phones to supercomputers because many different people pulled it in many different directions. It's good. But you don't need to pretend that with FLOSS software I have all the choices and with closed source none.

  • by lukas84 (912874) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:47AM (#29213615) Homepage

    Poisoning education

    Wrong. Children learn to work on the platform that's mostly used in Businesses today, giving them the necessary skills to obtain a job.

    Invading privacy - WGA

    Wrong. WGA does not "inspect" the users hard drive, it checks the Windows license. It's mostly used to combat fraud done by computer vendors which sell illicit copies for money. Users at home will purchase Windows with their PC and use OEM Activation, which does not need any user interaction. Enthuasiasts upgrading their PC will need to enter a key, but Activation is also quick and painless.

    Microsoft dictates requirements to hardware vendors, who will not offer PCs without Windows installed on them

    Not true. Microsoft requires vendors to only sell computers with an operating system to qualify for a discount. You can purchase laptops with Ubuntu from Dell, you can purchase ThinkPads running FreeDOS or SLED.

    Vendors may also opt to purchase OSB copies at standard pricing, which has zero restrictions.

    Microsoft regularly attempts to force updates on its users, by removing support for older versions of Windows and Office

    Support for old software is discontinued everytime, by every vendor. Every Linux vendor and even free distributions like Ubuntu have a support lifecycle.

    Microsoft has attempted to block free standardization of document formats

    Well, i'll give them this point. But Microsoft has added support for ODF in Office 2007 SP2, however it was the ODF guys who weren't even able to spec out something basic as formulas in a spreadsheet specification.

    Enforcing Digital Restrictions Management (DRM)

    If you purchase DRMd content, you know exactly what you're in for. Windows just supports it. It's like a car that can lock the rear doors to children can't open the doors while on the road. Yes, some people may use that feature to kidnap someone, but that doesn't mean that locking rear doors is bad.

    Threatening user security

    This was true until Windows XP SP2, but Microsoft has really improved security since then.

    All in all, it's a bunch of stupid FUD by hippies that eat their gunk from their toes.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by zwei2stein (782480)

      Actually, there is a point with poisoning education.

      Considering lifecycle of products, any 'education' tied specifically to commercial software product is only good for several years. After that it becomes obsolete and wasted. And regardless of huge spread, it is still one product focus.

      Education which instead teaches about concepts and underlying structures will on the other had continue being useful much longer and applicable to wider array of situations.

      Do you think is is worth it using school-time to do

    • Microsoft requires vendors to only sell computers with an operating system to qualify for a discount.

      this is anti-competitive and discriminates unfairly against Naked Computers

    • by houghi (78078) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @06:02AM (#29214091)

      Wrong. Children learn to work on the platform that's mostly used in Businesses today, giving them the necessary skills to obtain a job.

      It is a pity then that all they remember is what buttons to press in Word and not how to write a letter. It is a pity then that I have to train each and every person we get to use the tools we have.

      Instead of button pressing droids, I rather have people who understand what the reason is why they need to press those buttons.

      At one particualr handover of a job, I got a detaild description of what I had to enter, copy and paste to get a report. That took about 2 hours to explain, write down and what not. 2 hours, not 2 years or more of schooltime. Then when I asked what I was actualy reporting on, what the results where being used for, so I could look at a better way (and perhaps automate parts of it) I got a blank stare.

      Explain the why and peple will figure out the how.

      Learn people what a spreadsheet is and does and they will be able to use any of them. Specifics will be learned when they are in the company that then can decide if they want to use OpenOffice, Excel, Gnumeric or paper.

      The excuse that MS uses is that they are able to use what the companies want. The companies then can only buy these tools, as nobody knows how to use anything else.
      So yes, they are poisening the system because of this cath 22 they are trying to create.

      Schools teach Office, so people get a job.
      Companies buy Office, as that is the only thing people the want to hire know.

      I have seen people who are perfect in Excel, yet they have no idea what they are doing. I rather do it in a slower way (pen, paper and a calculator if I am lazy) and actually KNOW what the numbers mean.

      I have several people where I work who are working at numbers on excel sheets just how they learned to do it and would not see an error if you hit them with the keyboard.
      "I have no idea why the commission for that person is 15.000 this week where it is normaly 150. I put it in as always and that is the result."

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by evalhalla (581819) *

      > Wrong. Children learn to work on the platform that's mostly used in
      > Businesses today, giving them the necessary skills to obtain a job.

      Children who learn to use the platform in use _today_ will have no useful skill with the platform in use in 10-15 years, whey they will have to obtain a job.

      Children who learn about computing, on the other hand, will be able to adapt to the platforms in use in 10, 20, 40 years, as needed in the various jobs they'll have. This is something that is harder to teach, ho

  • by pugdk (697845) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:49AM (#29213627) Homepage

    .... complete control of their employees computers. More lockdown features present in the OS = more power to the IT department = easier for BOFH IT administrators to take away any and all "freedoms" you may think you have when using equipment provided by your workplace.

    In other words: What a waste of time sending letters to these companies!

  • by clickclickdrone (964164) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:51AM (#29213645)
    They're sounding ever more rabid, proclaim bizarre things that anyone with a clue can see right through and are frankly counter productive to whatever they are trying to achieve. Once upon a time I had a lot of respect for them in many areas but these days, just seeing FSF in a headline is usually a clue you need to jump to the next new article.
  • sins, eh? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Trepidity (597) <delirium-slashdot@noSPam.hackish.org> on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:52AM (#29213649)

    Windows may be guilty of 7 sins, but its main competitor on the desktop is derived from an OS with a daemonic mascot.

  • digital copies? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by msormune (808119) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:57AM (#29213689)
    I don't know about you, but I can still copy CDs and other DRM-free content pretty fine with Vista.
  • Great strategy (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rennerik (1256370) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @04:58AM (#29213693)
    Those same "sins" can be applied to any proprietary piece of software; heck, some of them can be applied to certain open-source software as well. Now, putting Windows aside, people use proprietary software all the time -- and for some of it there is no FOSS equivalent. Whether it's Windows itself, or Photoshop, Visual Studio, AutoCAD, Mastercam, Office, VMWare, or any of the slew of proprietary pieces of software out there, it's a bad idea to sit there and categorically attack something that many people are either fine with, don't care enough to be against, or ignorant about whether or not they should be against it.

    In fact, that's probably the least likely way those people will end up listening to you, and after all, those are the people you're trying to convince.

    A lot of people like Windows very much, and even if they could afford an alternative, like a Mac, they choose not to, because they like Windows. Hardcore industry people, like professional photographers using Photoshop, graphic designers using Illustrator, computer-aided manufacturing engineers using things like Mastercam or AutoCAD are so dedicated to their tool-of-trade that they will take umbrage to anything that tries to insult it. After all, doing so may be taken as an insult to their very profession, and thus, to themselves.

    So what I'm trying to say is, the strategy of attacking Windows, and proprietary software in general, in order to help bring people to FOSS is going to have the exact opposite effect -- it's only going to solidify people who use proprietary software and alienate them from any thoughts of an alternative. After all, you wouldn't listen to someone telling you you suck, the software you use sucks, and you're an idiot for using it. Now, I'm not saying that's what they outright said, but that's how it's going to be taken by people reading it.

    Maybe FOSS should stop being like PETA and, instead, tell people why it's *good* to use FOSS. Why Linux is *better* than Windows, GiMP is *better* than Photoshop, OpenOffice is *better* than MS Office. And maybe people will listen. But if you insult their software and tell them to use something else, they won't be very open to the idea.

    Just a thought, anyway.
    • Re:Great strategy (Score:5, Insightful)

      by AnarkiNet (976040) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:29AM (#29213917) Homepage

      Maybe FOSS should stop being like PETA and, instead, tell people why it's *good* to use FOSS. Why Linux is *better* than Windows, GiMP is *better* than Photoshop, OpenOffice is *better* than MS Office. And maybe people will listen. But if you insult their software and tell them to use something else, they won't be very open to the idea.

      Too hard, and in some cases impossible. Anyone who has used both 3D Studio Max and Blender will laugh in your face if you try and tell them Blender is an overall better piece of software to use.

      • Re:Great strategy (Score:5, Informative)

        by jabjoe (1042100) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @07:07AM (#29214455)
        I work in a games company and was involved in art tools for many years. Anyone technical who digs into 3DS comes to hate it with a passion. It's a mess in desperate in need of a rewrite. Blender IS better to develop for. API/scripting aside, the rigging stuff in 3DS Max is terrible, it's not a proper animation package, we have dropped it here for animation, after it failed to do the job so badly it's supporters lost all authority on the matter. Maya is used for animation, Max if used at all, is used only by modelers. Blender IS better than Max for animation. There are artists here who love Blender (but it's only home they use it). The ones who have tried it and hate it, hate it because the interface is so different for Max/Maya. They don't want to learn a new interface. It's hard to argue it can't be used for high quality work when there is high quality work done with it (Big bunny, Elephant dream and others). I'm not involved with art tools and artists any more, but I keep in contact with those that are, and Blender is certainly one to watch. Especially as Maya quality decays under Autodesk and XSI is beginning to decay too. Why Autodesk was allowed to own Max, Maya and XSI is beyond me. Blender is one of a few of rays of hope.
  • Really? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Arainach (906420) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:00AM (#29213715)

    They could at least try. Every single claim they make is laughable. They make overarching claims such as "inspect users' hard drives", which carries a heavy implication of looking through user data when no such looking occurs. Most of the others (vendor lock-in, security holes) are a decade out of date. Then they use terms like "proprietary Word formats" when all Word formats - both OOXML and DOC - are fully documented, as mandated by federal court.

    Finally, they talk about DRM and removing support for older versions when you'd be hard-pressed to find an Open Source vendor supporting products for even a quarter of the lifecycle Microsoft supports its products for and the DRM exists solely to allow playback of HD content (and is nonexistent when such content isn't being played), something with OSS can't do.

    Really, the FSF is almost as much of an embarassment to the Open Source community as RMS. If we ever want to see the day of the Linux desktop, we'll have to muzzle both of them first.

  • by Seriousity (1441391) <.Seriousity. .at. .live.com.> on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:05AM (#29213749)
    From TFA:

    Founded in the mid-1980s by hacker-activist Richard Stallman, the FSF argues that free software and source code is a moral right. It takes pains to distinguish itself from the open-source movement, which advocates sharing of source code but tolerates charging for software.

    I find this point rather interesting, as Richard Stallman gave a speech at Otago University here in small old New Zealand last year, and he was quite adamant that there was nothing wrong with charging for software, and took great pains to make the distinction between "free as in freedom" and "free as in beer".
    Is Computerworld confused?

  • by jonaskoelker (922170) <.jonaskoelker. .at. .gnu.org.> on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:10AM (#29213785) Homepage

    I think the FSF is using some ineffective rhetoric.

    The first sin:

    1. Poisoning education: Today, most children whose education involves computers are being taught to use one company's product: Microsoft's. Microsoft spends large sums on lobbyists and marketing to corrupt educational departments. An education using the power of computers should be a means to freedom and empowerment, not an avenue for one corporation to instill its monopoly.

    I think this rhetoric only works if the reader already is at least somewhat suspicious of Microsoft.

    To someone whose only experience with non-MS OSes is watching 90's movies (remember the Apple product placement) and maybe using a Mac at a friend's house once or twice; to someone whose only complaint about Microsoft software is that it crashes a bit too often and thinks this is just the way computers are; to someone who thinks that Windows and Office is the "standard" software and that it's useful to use what everyone else uses; to someone who doesn't think (rightly or wrongly) that the MS monopoly is causing bad things to happen to them---

    What is the FSF saying? That schools should teach children how to use another OS that very few people use, and that might not work well together with what everyone uses? "Yeah, sure, monopolies aren't great, but I want my kids to learn something useful instead of what some ideologue thinks is right."

    I don't agree with "the common man"'s interpretation, but I think that's what it is.

    I think a much more powerful message could be sent by pounding (hard) on the fact that Microsoft is costing you more money that they have to. But they don't make a big fuss out of that:

    4. Lock-in: Microsoft regularly attempts to force updates on its users, by removing support for older versions of Windows and Office, and by inflating hardware requirements. For many people, this means having to throw away working computers just because they don't meet the unnecessary requirements for the new Windows versions.

    That really hasn't been my experience when I was using Windows: I wanted faster boxes such that I could play better games. How many people have upgraded computers to run newer versions of Windows/Office? In any case, why doesn't the FSF say in big, nasty, red letters: "Microsoft is making you spend money (excessively)!"? [add an OMGBBQROFL and exclamation marks if you think it makes the message more convincing].

    Oh well... I think it's good of the FSF to try*, although I doubt the effectiveness of their methods.

    [* I happen to use (GNU/)Linux, but if the FSF was advocating Haiku or OpenVMS or $NOT_LINUX as their main Windows alternative, I'd still be happy: I want more competition in the OS market, and a more fragmented platform base that'll encourage software vendors to write portable code; when you ignore 40% of the market instead of 5%, you might rethink not porting. Maybe this'll just shift apps even more onto the web, though...]

  • by xtracto (837672) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:11AM (#29213793) Journal
    ... They wanted their web-design pages back.

    Is that a BLINK tag I am looking at? Just that makes FSF or whoever else uses it E.V.I.L. (c)
  • by Viol8 (599362) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @05:25AM (#29213883)

    ... I'm frankly getting sick of the FSF. This latest stupid campaign reads like it was written by some petulant teenager without the first clue as to the realities of life and it tars the rest of us who support (and in my case actually write) OSS with the same idiotic uncompromising brush.

    Message to Stallman - close source will be around after you've retired from your cosy ivory tower paid-by-the-taxpayer college job so get over it, learn to live with it and stop making other OSS advocates look and sound like immature fools.

  • Education (Score:5, Interesting)

    by jabjoe (1042100) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @06:12AM (#29214143)
    I really agree with this point. People learn Excel instead of spread sheets. The problem is, give them another spread sheet, or Excel with a new interface, and their world melts. But also it is a learning computers/programming question. I also think Windows is not as a nutritious platform to learn from. When I was growing up, computers where relatively open, or at least the Acorn was, nearly everything was a mix of BASIC and ARM code. The Acorn was itching to be programmed. A disproportion of programmers I have worked with cut their teeth on the Acorn as a child. Where are our replacements coming from? Uni? I think the problems of learning programming purely from the education system are well documented here, not saying they are all crap, but there is certainly no shortage of those that are. Very few Windows kids seem to come out programmers. Linux is even more nutritious platform, more so then platforms like the Acorn ever where. Not just because everything is open but because of its rich server heritage. The openness is not just in the source, but in documents and books explaining how parts work and why. There are no dark secrets and black boxes, everything is done in the open to those interested. I learnt more in the last few years of playing with Linux at home then I have in the last ten programming on Windows for a living. I think this is why Windows people fear the penguin, if all this is right, it means they are behind where they could be. The big thing I think Windows breaks is your understanding of filesystems. Explaining a virtual filesystem to a Windows (userland only) programmer can melt their mind, explaining the "proc" folder has done that at least a few times. Those who think filesystems don't matter, don't understand how powerful this simple abstraction is. They have never seen a device file, it's hidden from their world, they don't know it's all under their feet. Which goes back to Windows breaking your understanding of filesystems. My kids will be Linux kids and they will know more about computers because of it.
  • by w0mprat (1317953) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @06:41AM (#29214291)
    I now no longer believe the FUD from the freetard crowd any more than I do from the Apple, Microsoft or whoevers marketing department.

    FSF clearly has Microsoft hate disease to the point it is leaping into the FUD game with claims that are quite a stretch. Talk of 'sins' .. seriously? It is unhelpful, silly even and works against an otherwise good cause.

    Microsoft has previously been the dirty monoploy, but many claims are a stretch, some as good as ficticious. Furthormore things have started to change in Redmond.

    DRM is hardly a threat anymore. DRM in WIndows was a flop, it's progressing no further, it's a seldom invoked codepath that somehow got blamed for performane problems, crops failing and stillborn babies in Vista (guess what same DRM is in Windows 7, problems there? No dead babies).

    These 'sins' are tenuous at best, and are mostly situations that are improving. FSF: please do not be unhelpful, stick to facts or go beat up on Apple please.

    Lock in? Seriously, that's being erroded, Microsofts supposed Lock-in is now as feeble as ever, consumers and developers have long taken matters in to their own hands.

    Poisoning education? Maybe previously, but you can actually get Linux qualifications nowadays, and the tremendous growth of Linux in schools and universities is another point.

    To the more lawless of individuals DRM is so insubstantial as to be no exsistant. Example:

    'Windows, for some time now, has really been a DRM platform, restricting you from making copies of digital files,'

    Let me fix that for you, FSF:

    'Windows, for some time now, has really been a piracy platform, the OS of choice for pirates, warez, and hell the OS itself is the most pirated OS ever.

    I would add, that 'piracy' is a feature of Windows. DRM of any kind has been a failure, people take matters into their own hands and get what they want restrictions be damned

  • by Cragen (697038) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @07:15AM (#29214491)
    Slightly off-topic, but I am sure that W7 and IE Browsers are "tightly woven" with the Sharepoint portal. You can hardly use the portal without the IE Browsers and Office200x. I never hear much ado about the interaction of all that stuff. Not many Firefox add-ons there, are there? This worries me a bit more than anything FFS is going on about.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MtViewGuy (197597)

      If you think this is bad, just wait until the Google Chrome OS, where a large fraction of things done online are tied to the online services Google provides. This is control that would make Microsoft including Internet Explorer in Windows seem like a minor event in comparison.

  • Why just Win 7? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Megane (129182) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @07:53AM (#29214713) Homepage
    Can someone please tell me how most of these problems (except maybe some of the new DRM stuff) didn't apply to XP and Vista? I'm just not seeing what's so special about Win 7 here.
  • by Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @08:52AM (#29215273)

    Why do people insist on demanding Microsoft live up to standards that Apple, and Linux arent asked to live up to?

    Windows 7 doesnt even come with an email program now! Linux, and MAC OS come with an email program.

    Mac OS comes with quicktime, and Microsoft gets called "anti competitive" because Media Player ships with windows!?

    If windows didnt come with a web browser, how would download a competing web browser? ... or any other software option?

    APPLE is JUST AS GUILTY if not worse, then any thing Microsoft has done in recent times. But Apple gets a free pass... WHY?

    Just admit you hate Microsoft out of spite. It has very little to do with reality, and everything to do with personal bias.

    Again... APPLE does far more to keep their users locked into "Apple's way". Apple is extremely closed in its workflow, applications and bundled software. It is Apple or nothing. And you know what... Thats what people like about the Mac!

    No wonder Windows is falling so hard lately. They cant even do anything comprehensive without being called a "monopoly".

    Microsoft is not a monopoly. Lets get over it. Apple's software runs on the same hardware. If anything Apple is far more closed, and controlling than windows has ever been.

    Its really time to stop.

    I'm all for making sure competition is fair, but not at the cost of a comprehensive environment / workflow. As long as you can use alternative software... I dont care how or what MS bundles with their OS, or what it builds into its OS. Just as long as its good.

    Windows still runs exe's last i checked right?

    Good. Then there will be alternatives to MS installed applications.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DragonWriter (970822)

      Why do people insist on demanding Microsoft live up to standards that Apple, and Linux arent asked to live up to?

      They don't. Neither Apple nor "Linux" (which isn't an entity, in the first place) are permitted to use anticompetitive practices to illegally leverage a market position which meets the legal definition of monopoly.

      Microsoft is not a monopoly.

      Insofar as is legally relevant, Microsoft has been found to not only be a monopoly but to have been illegally abusing a monopoly position, in various jurisdi

  • by DewDude (537374) on Thursday August 27, 2009 @09:06AM (#29215433)
    "'Windows, for some time now, has really been a DRM platform, restricting you from making copies of digital files,'"

    Uhhh...excuse me? Does this mean all those mp3 dics I burned for my car in Win7 really didn't work, or the files I copied to my digital music player? All those Netflix and FlexDVD's that hit my Win7 machine really didn't get backed up and really didn't get outputted to a DVD-R? Wow, without the FSF telling me what Windows 7 couldn't do...I was starting to have major misconceptions based on actual working expierence.

    While I agree with what most of the FSF does, I think this is just hate mongering. Some of the points they make is ok...but seriously...that kind of thing comes standard with any Windows installtion. FUD? Your fudding right!

    But back to the DRM thing since it's what I know about. In no way did I see Windows7 as being any more obtrusive with digital media than XP was. This DRM crap they must be talking about is the same "create protected conetnet" crap they've been putting in to Windows Media Player for years.

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