"There is never a perfect time for this type of transition, but now is the right time," Ballmer said in a statement. "We have embarked on a new strategy with a new organisation and we have an amazing senior leadership team. My original thoughts on timing would have had my retirement happen in the middle of our company’s transformation to a devices and services company. We need a CEO who will be here longer term for this new direction."
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No, not really. I completely agree with the OP. Home equipment is complete shit, and tends to fail rather quickly, especially Wireless routers. Switches last long but I've had a few come up with a dead port once in a while. It really sucks, so I too have been looking for better options.
For my home router I use a Debian Squeeze PC that I setup on an Intel Atom 330 board. Routes my 50/50 WAN perfectly well, even after applying firewall and NAT. For switches, I found that Mikrotik makes decent gear. They make routers too but I don't want to depend on a proprietary OS for my routing features. For switches, I like having a hardware switch chip and there's no setup to be done, so Mikrotik isn't bad for that.
Of course, if I could get my hands on a Cisco managed gigabit switch I'd use that instead behind my Linux router, but I'm not shitting money yet.
My home equipment works great and has been doing so unprotected for a couple of years now...
Right, you should be running on Linux, obviously. Anyone who doubts the security of Linux should just look at Android, and how secure and untouched by malware it is... oh wait. Umm... maybe OpenBSD? I mean, it's gotta be secure, cause Theo says so. So do the other 3 people who use it.
Maybe it's actually more important to just run a modern OS behind a good firewall, use safe computing practices (don't blindly click on stupid stuff from computers or networks with sensitive information), and keep everything well-patched. That will remove > 98% of risk. A properly locked down and patched Windows machine is no less secure than a properly locked down and patched Linux, Apple, BSD, or other machine.