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No EFI Support for Vista 688

DietFluffy writes "Microsoft revealed today that it will not support EFI booting for Windows Vista on its launch. The news will be a shock for owners of Intel Macs who had hoped they would be able to dual-boot between Windows Vista and OS X. Intel Macs only support booting via EFI."
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No EFI Support for Vista

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  • by Aokubidaikon ( 942336 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:28AM (#14889338) Homepage
    "If you won't let us boot yours, we're not gonna let you boot ours either! Hehehe!"
    • by stunt_penguin ( 906223 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:30AM (#14889531)
      Yea but what I don' get it what booting has to do with Electronic Fuel Injection.. WAIT A MINUTE....!
  • by liangzai ( 837960 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:28AM (#14889340) Homepage
    Well, Microsoft has always been a slow adapter of everything. USB was late, even a GUI came late. There is still support for floppy disks... no surprise here.

    This is good. I don't want to see Macs contaminated with 10 GB of installed rubbish.
    • by darkain ( 749283 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:52AM (#14889411) Homepage
      The parent may have been moderated as "troll", but its TRUE, and annoying. I have signed up for the Vista beta testing program, and was quite pissed off to find out that they STILL arent supporting my SATA controller (SiI-3112 non-RAID configuration). We where hoping for support of the more common controllers back with Windows XP SP2. Here it is a few YEARS later, and I cant even install the latest Vista beta.
      • I spoke to a chap about 9 months ago on shacknews.com and hardocp.com about Vista, ... apparently the MS team who handle the F6 floppy / SATA / install section of the installer didn't (and still don't!) realise there's a problem with needing a fucking FLOPPY disk to install the storage drivers!

        The chap on the team who is / was a friend of the guy I spoke to said he needed proof or some kind of evidence (large thread? web petition?) to convince the rest of his team / management that installing drivers from U
        • by The Snowman ( 116231 ) * on Friday March 10, 2006 @09:42AM (#14890090)

          The chap on the team who is / was a friend of the guy I spoke to said he needed proof or some kind of evidence (large thread? web petition?) to convince the rest of his team / management that installing drivers from USB or CD is smart.

          How about the fact that many computers today do not come with a floppy drive pre-installed, but have optical drives and on-board SATA? Hell, I've seen computers without PS/2 ports: you must use a USB keyboard and mouse. In some ways this is a lot better. Get rid of the legacy connections that while potentially useful, are not necessary. Same with the floppy. Why should a manufacturer spend $5 on a floppy when they can simply not put one in and charge the same price?

          The real issue, as this thread demonstrates, is that the software manufacturers still rely on legacy technology.

        • by jwilhelm ( 238084 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @09:53AM (#14890148) Homepage Journal
          In the most recent Vista beta you can install the drivers from floppy, USB or CD.
    • by lmlloyd ( 867110 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @07:52AM (#14889729)
      I hate to rain on you MS-trashing party, but Microsoft already DOES support EFI. EFI is, after all, a PC technology, developed for the Itanium, not something Apple designed for their systems. The summary of the article is quite simply wrong. Vista will support EFI in the 64-bit version, for 64-bit chips, this being a technology designed for a 64-bit processor. In fact 64-bit XP and 2003 ALREADY support EFI. What will not be supported is EFI on 32-bit chips, since no one is doing that except Apple.
  • I'm not at all excited by the idea of shutting down my computer just to use another operating system.

    Anybody who's used a virtualization product like VMWare knows what I'm talking about. That is where it's at.

    You can run another operating system in a window without leaving your current OS. It's not an emulator in any traditional sense of the word; things run at (or a few percent shy of) native speed. The only downside is that you need enough RAM to run both operating systems simultaneously in a comfortable fashion, but 2GB of RAM is under $200 these days.

    I'm going to buy an Intel Mac as soon as VMWare releases an OSX version of VMWare or an open-source implementation reaches that level of quality (there are some strong contenders). I'm willing to put down the cash to run Windows on an Intel Mac, but dual-booting isn't even part of the equation.
    • by earthbound kid ( 859282 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:15AM (#14889484) Homepage
      Amit Singh and his friends at IBM got XP running under VMWare in Linux on an Intel iMac [osxbook.com]. As he says, "To anybody who has used Windows XP under Virtual PC on the PowerPC version of Mac OS X: you will simply be blown away by how fast Windows XP runs under VMware on the new hardware." So that's good news. Now someone just has to make it work under OS X directly.
      • by shmlco ( 594907 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:45AM (#14889575) Homepage
        "XP running under VMWare in Linux on an Intel iMac..."

        Wow. Are they sure they can't get DOS and OS/2 involved in that process somehow?

        • by jonadab ( 583620 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @08:04AM (#14889753) Homepage Journal
          > > "XP running under VMWare in Linux on an Intel iMac..."
          > Wow. Are they sure they can't get DOS and OS/2 involved in that process somehow?

          Sure, no problem. All you need to make that work is an EFI-emulator written in Java; there's already an x86 emulator written in Java, so then we hook that up together with the EFI emulator and basically what we have then is an Intel-Mac emulator, which runs on the JVM. The JVM is available for OS/2, so we'll have XP running under VMWare in Linux on an emulated Intel iMac running on the JVM under OS/2, running in VirtualPC on OS X, which is running on PearPC under FreeBSD, which is running under bochs on DOS in domain2 on Xen. That'll be much faster and more convenient than dual-booting, since at least three of those emulation layers promise near-native execution speeds.

        • by CdBee ( 742846 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @09:50AM (#14890135)
          start linux, start vmware in linux, start XP, start vmware in XP, start linux on vmware on xp on vmware on linux, then you can unplug the iMac and carry it off leaving the operating syatems hanging in mid-air in an endlessly self-supporting loop.
    • by dan the person ( 93490 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:21AM (#14889499) Homepage Journal
      I'm not at all excited by the idea of shutting down my computer just to use another operating system.

      Anybody who's used a virtualization product like VMWare knows what I'm talking about. That is where it's at.

      One word: Games.

      Unless things have changed recently, opengl, directx etc don't work.
      • VMWare Workstation beta has experimental 3D acceleration support. I don't know what performance is like though.
      • Unless things have changed recently, opengl, directx etc don't work.

        With Vanderpool virtualisation technology, you can run multiple concurrent OSes directly on the hardware. As opposed to VMWare or VirtualPC, which emulate a system abstracted out, hardware virtualisation lets you run two systems (e.g. OS X and Windows Vista) at the same time directly on the hardware. Perhaps you would still be running it inside of VMWare or VirtualPC just to provide a management interface, but it's just as real as booting o
    • by jcr ( 53032 ) <jcr@@@mac...com> on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:27AM (#14889516) Journal
      VMWare is a very fine product, and I too look forward to seeing it on a Mac. A friend of mine solved a rather hairy Windows problem by running multiple virtual NT machines under VMWare, since he wasn't allowed to ditch NT altogether (decisions made many, many levels above his customer).

      In the application in question, they had 21 NT hosts running their web apps. In production, these machines stayed up about five hours. The band-aid solution was to make one machine reboot all the others every four hours. The permanent fix was to run NT under VMWare: the NT instances still failed, but restarting one from a pristine state became a five-second operation.

      For a bonus, they picked up enough performance from Linux's paging versus NT's utterly brain-dead paging, that they were able to free all but three of the 21 machines that had been using to other tasks.

      The answer to a broken OS is to run it in a penalty box under a working OS.

    • by akheron01 ( 637033 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @09:19AM (#14890014) Homepage
      Oh man, I can't believe all of the people I hear saying they'll get an Intel Mac as soon as it can run Windows. I think all of these people are going to be a little surprised when they realize their Windows partition has been doing little more than gathering dust for several months ;)
    • The best would be if VMWare was its own O/S, sharing resources equally between installed operating systems, so no single operating system has an edge on performance, plus VMWare would have an option to 'freeze' one operating system so as that the other runs at full speed (running a game, for example).
    • by Macka ( 9388 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @10:27AM (#14890346)
      I've got a PowerBook at the moment, and will definitely be upgrading to a Macbook Pro in the near future. Being able to run MS Windows on it at (near) native speed would be a huge bonus for me, but I've got zero interest in dual booting to get that. I don't give a rats ass about running games under windows; I hardly have enough free time in my life to play WoW on my PowerBook more than a few times a week (without getting into trouble with my other half).

      What I really need it for is those work occasions where I run into equipment that needs a dedicated Windows app to manage it, and dual-booting to deal with that is just stupid. I need a good native virtual environment I can just fire up in a minute, do my work and then close it down. VPC on PowerPC just doesn't cut it. It's way too slow.

      The things I'm keeping an eye on ...... QEMU + Accelerator seems to be the only choice for Intel OSX right now. VMware are apparently showing interest (but nothing solid yet) and another outfit called iEmulator.com are supposed to have an Intel port of their existing Mac OSX product in the pipeline.

      If Xen worked I'd be delighted, but there seem to be problems that are going to take some time to work out. 1) there is no Intel VT support in the current Intel Mac's, and 2) Moshe Bar has said that "OS X has its own virtualization technology that interferes with Xen". Apparently he's been able to get FreeBSD and Debian working, but Apple's protectiveness of its hardware specs has so far prevented Bar from getting the graphics, sound or Wi-Fi to work.

      So it's really only a matter of time :-)

  • by laptop006 ( 37721 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:35AM (#14889359) Homepage Journal
    "Although Microsoft has previously said EFI booting would be supported by Vista, Ritz admitted that EFI support won't be seen in any version of Windows until the release of Longhorn Server."

    Great, yet another vista feature removed before released.
    • by Zadaz ( 950521 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:38AM (#14889368)
      Great, yet another vista feature removed before released.

      Better than being removed after release.

    • by Jesus_666 ( 702802 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @07:53AM (#14889732)
      Redmond - In a surprising turn of events Microsoft held a press conference yesterday stating that Windows Vista will not support the 32 bit mode of Intel 80386 and compatible processors. When asked about why this feature was left out from the release lead coder Alfred E. Newman replied: "We felt that 32 bit support was just not ready for Vista. The NT line of operating systems is still too cutting-edge to be used in the productivity powerhouse that Vista is going to be." Instead, Microsoft will deploy a new version of MS-DOS as the operating system's foundation. The new DOS, called "MS-DOS 2006" will feature improved support for TSRs and the capability of automatically loading supporting programs directly into extended memory, allowing it to have all 640 kilobyte of conventional memory ready for applications that depend on it.
      Microsoft promised that all other proposed Vista features (except for those already canceled) will "have a chance of making it into Vista". When asked about whether customers coud be expected to put up with Vista's proposed 480 installation floppies Newman replied: "What, me worry?"

      The new decision was universally met with conetempt within the Apple world. "They think that pushing the MS-DOS version number from 7 to 2007 is a big step," Random MacGeek from AppleRumorsUpYourButt.com commented, "but we clearly had the biggest version number jump when Bungie went from Marathon 2 to Marathon: Infinity. Microsoft is late to the game, as always."
      When asked about the topic of Microsoft being late to the game Apple replied: "It's true! Microsoft promides to buy me and GNU here a beer at the game. Now it's halfway over and Microsoft is nowhere to be seen!" "We're not going to invite Microsoft to the next game," GNU added, "we have better things to do with our time than to spend it waiting for some guy from Redmond."
  • by ssj-xordyh ( 613424 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:36AM (#14889362)
    Quote from the article: "It said its decision to 'reprioritise'[sic] EFI development to the server version of Windows was based on a lack of available desktop PCs with EFI support on the market."

    Maybe the reason that there are no desktop PCs with EFI support is because everyone knows that Windows still only boots on BIOS. If Microsoft was serious about jump-starting a move to EFI (or any other alternative) they would support it now, and watch the hardware follow.

    I wonder if this is due to laziness, maliciousness, or a combination of both?
    • MS has no need for EFI. Windows works fine with the BIOS. Device drivers stored in EFI flash memory removes a degree of control from MS over what's on users PCs.

      Users have no need for EFI. They take whatever Windows gives them. If they've no experience of what EFI might offer then they are in no position to judge.

      MS is after making money out of every aspect of Vista. This includes their programme for signing device drivers and delivering them to customers. If there is an alternate mechanism MS no longer

      • Microsoft will have to support EFI in NT 6.0 (consumer version is called Vista) if they are to continue to produce the Itanium [microsoft.com] server version:

        EFI firmware is required for 64-bit Windows on Intel Itanium-based systems.
  • elilo? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Ledsock ( 926049 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:38AM (#14889367)
    I guess this means that someone is going to have to hack a Linux bootloader to boot Windows. Maybe something with elilo. It's be kinda cool for these [mactel-linux.org] guys to say, "Sure. You can run Windows on an Intel Mac. You just gotta install Linux first!"
  • by Cadallin ( 863437 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:45AM (#14889386)
    Does anybody give a damn? I mean seriously, did anyone out there actually BUY a new Intel mac counting on the rumors that it MIGHT be able to run windows sometime soon? If so, why?

    And does this really come as a suprise to anyone anyway? "Oh my God! Someone tries to update the x86 architecture in a meaningful way and Microsoft arrives late to the Party: Drunk, kicking, and screaming! Who knew that might happen?"

    • by ZeroOne42 ( 713052 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:43AM (#14889566)
      I for one was counting on the rumors that my new mac mini would be able to run windows. Why? Games. Although it'll take more than just EFI to play games in M$ Windows on an intel mac (drivers etc.), EFI is an important step towards that goal.

      You're obviously not a Windows user, nor a gamer, since the ONLY use of Windows is to play games anyway. Maybe view pr0n as well, but you can do that better on a Mac already...
  • WTF is EFI? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Big Nothing ( 229456 ) <big.nothing@bigger.com> on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:50AM (#14889403)
    For those of us who DON'T have a BN acronyms in a LUT in our heads, EFI means "Extensible Firmware Interface". Read up on Wiki [wikipedia.org].

  • A shock, you say... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by mederjo ( 899667 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:52AM (#14889409)
    I know it's the fashionable thing to do, but the whole article summary is a troll. I can't imagine all that many people are buying Intel Macs because there's a chance they might boot Windows, or rather any one who is going to be shocked-SHOCKED! if they can't. Not out in the real - not /. - world anyway. Some might be a bit miffed perhaps. I would hope that those who do want to dual boot Windows and OS X are savvy enough to wait to see if it's actually going to be possible before making a purchase. If not, well, sad for them but they have a pretty good OS and machine. I'm sure there'll be some sort of virtualisation environment available which will probably make for a more useful experience than dual booting anyway - much easier to share stuff between OSes when you can run both at the same time. Using Windows on my PC via RDC on one of my Macs is often more convenient than flipping between machines using my KVM.

    Many of the people I'm aware of who are buying Intel Macs are people who have been hanging out for a pepped up PowerBook. There are a few who seem to be getting them because they're the "new Mac", more money than sense :-). I only know one or two first time Mac buyers who have been waiting for a spread of Intel Macs ( i.e. mini, iMac and MacBook ) to choose from. None of them seem to be particularly interested in running Windows on their new machines.

    I have a 17" Intel iMac, which I got as a replacement machine from Apple for my DTK prototype Intel Mac. It's a great little machine. I have no intention at all of booting Windows on it - that's what my PC is for ;-).

    BTW, does anyone know where the "shocked-SHOCKED!" thing ( not necessarily with my capitalisation ) came from? I've seen quite a few people saying/writing it, and the only place in the popular media, if you will, that I've seen it is in the movie "High Fidelity" where Joan Cusack says it when having lunch with the Laura character. Is that where it came from? It's been buggin' me :-).


    Jo Meder
    • by 1u3hr ( 530656 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @07:00AM (#14889607)
      BTW, does anyone know where the "shocked-SHOCKED!" thing ( not necessarily with my capitalisation ) came from?

      Casablanca. [vincasa.com] (1942)
      RENAULT (Claude Rains): I am shocked, shocked to find that gambling is going on in here!
      The croupier comes out of the gambling room and up to Renault.
      CROUPIER: (handing Renault a roll of bills) Your winnings, sir.
  • by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:55AM (#14889416) Homepage
    I'm really worried now! It seems like almost every feature boasted in Vista has been pulled. Database filesystem and all that? What will be left that isn't essentially Windows XP with a much larger greed for memory and other hardware requirements?
  • Seems logical. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Vo0k ( 760020 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @05:57AM (#14889423) Journal
    Supporting EFI would be supporting competition. Incentive to abandon Microsoft.
    "I want a computer that's good for gaming and graphics. Either PC or the new Intel Mac, which I'd dual boot, OS X for gfx, Vista for games."

    EFI supported:
    "So, supposedly Mac is better for gfx than PC, let's try it... Wow, this OS X rocks and Vista sucks. I'm gonna get a PS3 for games and drop Vista altogether, staying with OS X."
    EFI not supported:
    "Well, there is Photoshop for Vista and no games for OS X, so I'd better buy a PC so I have both games and photoshop. Well, it sucks, but I bet OS X would suck just the same if I ever tried it."
  • by bananaendian ( 928499 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:08AM (#14889457) Homepage Journal
    As I understand it, one of central features of EFI was the hardware level encryption and digital signing happening between core motherboard components, an intergral part of the Trusted Computing Platform implementation - which Windows Vista was supposed to fully support? If Vista has to use the old BIOS architecture is there hope still for freedom or is there another way to tie us onto the TC-shackles?

    And does this mean Apple's products will be the only ones that fully implement the TC platform idea both in hardware and operating system level. I seem to remember the Macintosh launch involved an ad related to the year 1984, can't seem to remember exactly what it was about (mind blanked out)...
  • Effing Vista (Score:5, Insightful)

    by FishandChips ( 695645 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:14AM (#14889480) Journal
    So Vista is coming to seem more and more like an XP service pack with a massive price tag and unwelcome restrictions. I don't know why Gates doesn't throw in the towel and announce that from now on the chair of Microsoft will be held on a rotating basis by the chairs of the major Hollywood studios. All Microsoft seem to be doing these days in the consumer market is kowtowing to the content providers while trying to grab a slice of the action for themselves. Microsoft offer no vision, no inspiration or feel-good factor. It's a pathetic end to the dream of a computer on every desk. What we have instead is a glorified credit card processor.
  • Tin Foil Hat (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Mr_Silver ( 213637 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:21AM (#14889496)
    <tinfoil hat>

    Adding EFI support would allow people to run dual boot Windows and OSX on Apple hardware the next time they purchase a computer.

    Worse case for Microsoft would be that they try OSX, like it and then gradually migrate across to it.

    If they don't support EFI, then there is no good and legal way of running both on one machine. You could use software based solutions, but none of them are as good as a dual boot machine.

    As such, if you want to jump from Windows to OSX, it requires significant cash investment - something which a lot of people (myself included) aren't prepared to do.

    </tinfoil hat>

  • Shocked? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by wlvdc ( 842653 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:36AM (#14889549) Homepage Journal
    "The news will be a shock for owners of Intel Macs who had hoped they would be able to dual-boot between Windows Vista and OS X"

    As most owners will be 'traditional' mac users, I don't think this is a real issue.

    The article also reads: Extensible Firmware Interface (EFI) is the modern and flexible successor to the 20-year-old PC BIOS. It just shows that Microsoft doesn't understand true concepts of usability, innovation and excellence. As most Windows users enjoy crippled systems, using Mac OS X will come as relief to those who dare to swap. Unless you're gaming all day...

  • Horrors. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Chris Pimlott ( 16212 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @06:39AM (#14889555)
    The news will be a shock for owners of Intel Macs who had hoped they would be able to dual-boot between Windows Vista and OS X. Intel Macs only support booting via EFI."

    Neither of them was available for comment.
  • by linebackn ( 131821 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @07:18AM (#14889643)
    The more I think about it the more I think that if Microsoft ever provides official support for installing Windows natively on a Mac then it very likely will be the end of MacOS X and eventually Apple.

    Why? Because in general developers want "one true" operating system to develop for, often religiously so. I have heard people tell Mac users to "just get a PC" to run popular Windows-only software, but that is not a realistic expectation. That would be asking the Mac user to throw away thousands of dollars of hardware, and is generally considered unreasonable.

    If it ever becomes possible to easily install any version of Windows on a Mac in a manner that is supported by Microsoft, even if not by Apple, then these same people will demand that Mac users "just install Windows" to run their software. And they will consider that to be perfectly reasonable thing to do - they are adding something to they system and taking nothing away. They could afford an expensive Mac, so certainly they can afford to spend a few more buck for Microsoft Windows, right? And if it is running natively on the Mac rather than in VirtualPC developers will not worry that they might be making the users work in a crippled or limited environment.

    Then in time no one will see the need to develop MacOS X applications any more and all Mac users will be forced to use Windows.

    Apple will then be just another boring commodity PC maker like Dell or Gateway.

    So let's please stop even thinking about running Windows on the Mac. It just isn't cool.
    • by SEE ( 7681 )
      Well, there are already around a million fewer Mac operating system computers in service today than there were five years ago*, and now there's the inherent bumpiness of a platform change (especially for Carbon apps). So there's already going to be a loss of ISVs around at least the edges anyway.

      And the Windows emulation experience on Intel Macs is already going to improve, both because of the closer-to-native execution and the fact that the Intel Macs won't lag in performance behind PCs like the later-gen
  • by angel'o'sphere ( 80593 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @07:42AM (#14889703) Journal
    1) I never boot my Mac ... so how and why should I dual boot? (exception: OS upgrades that require one)
          Thats especially true for laptop (Pwerbook, MacBook Pro, iBook) owners, you only sleep the Mac and wake it up when needed.

    2) No one having a Mac would boot into Windows, why? Because he likely has no access to his Data on the Mac Partition, no eMails, no Adresses, no Calendar etc. It makes no sense to boot into Windows.

    If a Mac user *needs* Windows and wants to use it he uses a Virtual PC or OpenOSX or soon vmware. Of course you use a virtualized PC, because then you don't have to boot, and not to dual boot at least, and you have the advantage to access the data from both platforms on the other platform.

    No sane Mac user will use MS Office for Mail (Outlook etc.) and/or IE for browsing but will use his Mac Software for most of his work, so booting into Windows is very unlikely.

  • by lmlloyd ( 867110 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @07:42AM (#14889704)
    This is ridiculous! The story is, the crippled (I am amazed they are even releasing it) 32-bit version of Vista won't support the odd mac-only combination of 32-bit chips, and EFI. The 64-bit version of Vista, will support the standard configuration of 64-bit chips, and EFI, just like XP 64 already does.

    I love all the comments about how far behind Apple MS is, as proven by the fact that they can't even get EFI working. No, they have it working, just on modern 64-bit systems. Apple is the only company on earth that decided to go with a brand new technology like EFI, and then stick 32-bit chips on a 32-bit OS in their system! If Apple actually comes out with a 64-bit machine (like most modern PCs), I'm sure 64-bit Vista will boot on it just fine. This is one of those cases where the problem isn't how far behind MS is on their support for EFI, but how far behind Apple is on their choice of x86 chips. I have no idea why Apple let itself get talked into dumping a 64-bit architecture, just to get what basically amounts to some fast dual-core P3s, but they did.

    Talk about the very definition of FUD!
  • by jocknerd ( 29758 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @08:11AM (#14889775)
    Plain and simple. Microsoft knows that if you can run Windows on a Mac, more people may actually purchase a Mac. Then the comparison will start, and in my opinion, end very quickly. OS X is and will be light years ahead of Vista and Microsoft knows this.
  • by KJKHyperion ( 593204 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @08:36AM (#14889846)

    Windows supports EFI. Here, now, today. Has been for years. Currently is. Except only on the IA64 architecture. This makes the article partly bullshit, and a large amount of comments here as well. But the bullshit doesn't stop here.

    Of course the thing about drivers being stored entirely in EFI is completely false, misleading and somewhat retarded (it really depends on how twisted your idea of drivers is. If you come from a Linux background there's a 9 in 10 chance you are clueless and forever jaded about it). Of course the DRM comments here don't make the slightest sense, since TPM chips are here, now, have been for years, and they work with the old, usual, actually-existing BIOS extensibility interface (i.e.: drop a function pointer somewhere, get called). Have you bought an IBM laptop or workstation that was made some time after the Cretacean? congratulations! your cute little black box is Trusted Computing compliant (r), (c) and (TM)!

    From a more technical point of view: Windows doesn't depend on legacy hardware. It used to, in ye olden days (until before Windows Server 2003 R1), but it was so easy to get around it with software emulators (provided by Microsoft herself, as part of Windows NT 4 Embedded, Server Appliance Kit for Windows 2000 Server, et cetera) that only people with a really small penis complained. Nowadays it's a matter of the right boot loader and Hardware Abstraction Layer (all aboard the cluetraaain! if you are among the differently-endowed mouth breathers who confuse "instruction set" with "hardware" - and you know if you are one - this might just be your chance to finally get it!).

    Technical trivia: the Windows boot loader is a beauty. It totally mops the floor with anything in the wild, save maybe for Grub. The horrid ntldr flat executable is just a teeny weeny stub containing the real thing, a PE executable called osloader.exe (with a resource section, even - the description simply says "Boot loader"; sadly it has no icon) which is the universal loader - why, yes, your humble peecee can network-boot too! In short, the little bugger comes with a full SCSI+ATAPI stack (it can even stay loaded and be used by the kernel as the SCSI class driver - no shit!), a network stack for the TFTP client (yep) and its very own hardware abstraction layer, since the thing was written against ARC (think EFI, only for the Alpha AXP architecture) which is only really available on Alpha. The thing is a driver model short of a full operating system

    So, reconsider the length of your penis in the light of these new facts

  • by King_TJ ( 85913 ) on Friday March 10, 2006 @11:59AM (#14890949) Journal
    This is actually playing out exactly as I predicted. Microsoft isn't going to make it easy to boot any of their OS's on a MacBook Pro or any other Intel-based Mac, because doing so would mean the slow "death by irrelevance" of their VirtualPC product they bought from Connectix a few years ago.

    The beauty of forcing a Mac user to run Windows through the VirtualPC product is Microsoft can sell them a legal software license bundled with the product, making it an easy "one stop" way to collect the entire revenue stream. If they simply coded booting support for EFI on MacBooks into Vista, they'd encourage a lot more piracy. (How many Mac users do you know who despise Microsoft - and would justify running a bootleg copy of Vista in dual-boot mode as "So what? It's not really my primary OS anyway, and Microsoft doesn't need to get any more of MY money!"?)

    On the flip-side, the next version of VirtualPC will be able to completely drop all the x86 emulation code, and simply become a "sandbox" that fools a Windows OS into booting up inside of it, and then passes all the x86 instructions to the Intel-based Mac's CPU natively. This will let them brag about the incredible performance boost in the latest version of VirtualPC, etc. etc.

    The only thing I'm not sure about is if MS will decide to simply drop support for PPC based Macs at some point, keep both VirtualPC 7 and this new "version 8?" version as branded for "Intel Macs only", or actually code all of it together, so the traditional PPC emulation stuff is automatically installed/used where needed, and the alternate code for Intel-based Macs used where possible?

    But I'd practically bet money on one of these scenarios panning out.

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