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MS Exec Testifies In Favor of OS Manipulation 823

Niscenus writes: "The NYTimes, where free registration is required, reports that a Microsoft VP, Christopher Jones, explains that Microsoft must be allowed to prevent competitors' programmes from being installed for the consumer's best interest. Most interesting quote: 'In his written testimony, Mr. Jones said the states' proposals would confuse consumers, enabling competitors to cover up icons like the "Start" button on the Windows desktop screen that consumers use to navigate and even allowing a competing operating system like Linux to start up instead of Windows.' Any dualboot LiLo user who learned they can't defrag the hard way can understand this ..."
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MS Exec Testifies In Favor of OS Manipulation

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  • by Stephen VanDahm ( 88206 ) on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:08PM (#3422371) Homepage
    I assume that most of you already know about this, but in case you don't, here's a link to the Random NYTimes.com Registration Generator:


    Take care,

  • LILO and Defrag (Score:3, Informative)

    by user32.ExitWindowsEx ( 250475 ) on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:11PM (#3422386)
    "Any dualboot LiLo user who learned they can't defrag the hard way can understand this ..."

    Would someone explain to me what the issue he refers to is?
    (Personally, I use System Commander 7 --- mouse-enabled boot loaders are a Good Thing (tm) )
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:13PM (#3422403)
    If you look more closely at his website, this is a guy from Houston who runs a web hosting company.
  • Re:He runs linux! (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:15PM (#3422414)
    That might be relevant if that webpage belonged to Christopher Johnes, VP of Microsoft.

    I have a very hard time believing this [christopherrjones.com] is the same guy.

  • by Florian Weimer ( 88405 ) <fw@deneb.enyo.de> on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:25PM (#3422452) Homepage
    There was an FTC investigation in the beginning of the 90s (I've got a (German) quote from a PC Week article on the 1991-05-20 - "Is Microsoft controlling the information flow between operating system and application developers, in order to make competitors stumble?"). IIRC, it finally resulted in some settlement (and the establishment of Chinese Walls inside Microsoft or something like that).

    It seems that Microsoft wants lift these restrictions, after they have been found guilty of abusing a monopoly. Isn't this bizarre?
  • by acm ( 107375 ) on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:35PM (#3422485) Homepage
    The link in the article to christopherrjones.com is incorrect, in that that is *not* the webpage of the Microsoft VP.
    My name is Christopher Ryan Jones. I currently live in Houston, TX. I am a student at North Harris College and the Owner of Think Computing. I guess that should do it for now. Look for more information coming as I have time to post it.
    poor guy.
  • Or... (Score:5, Informative)

    by Cyph ( 240321 ) <yoonixNO@SPAMspeakeasy.net> on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:39PM (#3422499)
    You can just use the random generator thing like this:

    http://www.majcher.com/nytview.html?url=http://w ww . ytimes.com/2002/04/26/technology/26SOFT.html

    Link to the NYTimes article in this submission. [majcher.com]

    I've found that feature to be quite useful... maybe Slashdot should start posting all the NYTimes URLs with the registration generator. :D
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:51PM (#3422533)
    Easily changed:

    The easiest way is to edit your /etc/lilo.conf file, add an appropriate default= line near the top (first line of the file is O.K.) and then run /sbin/lilo.
    The default= line should refer to the label in your win "stanza." Basically that would be whichever word you've been manually typing at the LILO: prompt to get into Windows.
    Here's a sample:

    ins tall=/boot/boot.b
    dela y=20


    Of course, as with any changes to your kernels, partitions, or lilo.conf files you must run the /sbin/lilo command to update your boot record and maps in order for your changes to take effect.

  • Re:I have an idea... (Score:3, Informative)

    by Eloquence ( 144160 ) on Saturday April 27, 2002 @07:54PM (#3422544)
    You're probably talking about the last phase of the install that is run on the user's deployed machine. The actual Windows XP installer is based on NT's and text-menu based. And as I explained in my other comment, it is far inferior in functionality to all Linux installers (with the exception of hardware detection).
  • Re:I have an idea... (Score:4, Informative)

    by infiniti99 ( 219973 ) <justin@affinix.com> on Saturday April 27, 2002 @09:36PM (#3422883) Homepage
    Of course not all hardware is supported, but that, again, is the result of Microsoft's monopoly.

    Wrong. That is the result of lazy open source driver authors with selfish attitudes. If your hardware doesn't work in Linux, you're supposed to submit extremely detailed bug reports to mailing lists where they won't care about your problems or solve them in a timely fashion.

    Wrong. Making a hardware driver is no easy task, and their existence is generally based on the availability of specs. If there are no published specs for a piece of hardware, then forget about ever getting a driver (or least one that is complete) except from the manufacturer.

    For a short time I was involved in the gnokii project, which was an attempt to make unix drivers for a few serial-based Nokia phones. Many of us spent days trying to reverse-engineer the serial protocol using a "man in the middle" computers. After almost 6 months of work, gnokii was finally able to send and receive text messages. However, the ultimate goal was to be able to make data calls. Unfortunately, Nokia used a key-based authetication mechanism to enable data calls, which I believe was so they could license the technology to other driver makers (like TDK's mobile stuff). This would have been a dead-end for gnokii, but then one day the key algorithm surfaced anonymously. Now gnokii can make data calls, although I question the legality of it.

    Anyhow, after around 3 years under development, the project is still not at version 1.0, and I would imagine most users of those old Nokia phones have gone on. New Nokia phones nowadays use standard protocols (the 8890, for instance, acts as just an IR modem. Works in Linux 100% with no driver).

    The moral of the story? If Nokia had released the full specs to their phones then I can guarantee there would have been fully-featured drivers within just a few months. Instead, the gnokii developers were forced to dick around with reverse-engineering, which is almost always a lost cause. Seen the Linux driver situation for Winmodems lately? Just forget about it.

    I once wanted to make program to query GPS values from my Earthmate GPS device, so I went out and sought the hardware specs. The Earthmate uses the Zodiac chipset, of which there is a full PDF file available. I coded a simple program to interface with the Earthmate in only a few days. Mind you, this was for Windows 98. Linux is irrelevent here. Specs are all that matter.
  • by istartedi ( 132515 ) on Saturday April 27, 2002 @09:53PM (#3422939) Journal

    Sigh... how about just not buying Windows instead?

    I would really like to know what might have been accomplished if all the passion, all the lawyering, all the planning, all the brainpower that goes into trying to take down MSFT had been used to create competing products instead (and I don't mean GPL software that has no hope of generating enough revenue to really compete). Sadly, we will probably never find out. Seems like too many people have been taught it's easier to whine. Maybe it is, but it's a helluva lot less interesting to watch. Come on, IBM, bring back OS/2. Scrape off Be and verticly integrate it with hardware. Heck, if you verticly integrate Linux with hardware (thus removing the economic problem associated with the GPL) that would work too. There are so many fine creative ways to strike at the heart of MSFT and benefit the consumer. But no. You'd rather play lawyerball.

  • Re:Is it just me.. (Score:3, Informative)

    by coats ( 1068 ) on Saturday April 27, 2002 @10:36PM (#3423045) Homepage
    The problem is with service packs and updates. If you remove stuffarbitrarily, it is extremely difficult for Windows Update or service packs to work properly.
    Then someone in Redmond is incompetent. But we knew that already...

    And when Microsoft causes Windows service packs to deactivate application software like Eudora, and replace it with other application software like Outlook, and dosot on Federal Interest Computers -- as they have done, then Microsoft has committed a felony. And should have been punished accordingly: not simply broken up into different divisions, but broken up, dissolved, and all their assets confiscated.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 27, 2002 @10:41PM (#3423067)
    It used to be possible to run gcc under the older versions of Windows (9X, NT, 2000). But under Windows XP, they sabotaged any attempt to make the Gnu libraries the default.

    When you try to install the Windows version of gcc under XP, the OS detects that the MS libraries are no longer the default, and it immediately resets the links to the Gnu libraries to point to the MS libraries.

    That creates a "jolting experience" for anyone who tries to compile Gnu software under XP.

  • by Jeremi ( 14640 ) on Sunday April 28, 2002 @01:33AM (#3423527) Homepage
    Scrape off Be and verticly integrate it with hardware.

    That would have been done a long time ago if Microsoft hadn't used its monopoly to make sure [theregister.co.uk] no major hardware vendor would dare to do it. If anything deserves legal redress, it's that.

  • by forged ( 206127 ) on Sunday April 28, 2002 @05:07AM (#3423942) Homepage Journal
    It isn't the first time Microsoft implements hooks in their software to make a competitor's product slower or misbehave on Windows.

    This post [google.com] for instance, explains about how Microsoft added a software loop to Windows NT 4.0 to intentionnally slowdown the OS on Cyrix processors, so as to give partner Intel a competitive edge.

  • Re:Is it just me.. (Score:2, Informative)

    by catman ( 1412 ) <bjornst@skogkatt . h o m e l i nux.org> on Sunday April 28, 2002 @07:49AM (#3424141) Homepage Journal
    I don't know about Win ME, but 98 refuses to boot if it finds a disk with a non-Microsoft tag on the first partition. I found out the hard way when I put a second disk in this OEM Compaq and installed Linux on it. Windows 98 on first drive, Linux on second. Windows would not boot with the Linux drive attached. Finally I found that if I put a tiny, empty partition labeled MSDOS ( or similar) ahead of the Linux partition, it worked fine.

Logic is the chastity belt of the mind!