Re: Red Hat Will Pay Microsoft To Get Past UEFI Restrictions

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On 06/01/2012 05:30 PM, Sam Varshavchik wrote:
JD writes:

On 06/01/2012 04:18 AM, Sam Varshavchik wrote:

I don't give a frak about that. I just want to run my own stuff, without anyone else sticking their nose in my personal business. Is that too much to ask?

This discussion reminds me of the great Philospher Hegel.
The means used by tyrants to rise to power is the employment
of creating a thesis (eg: computer hacking and computer security),
offering (and even demanding) the antithesis (eg: UEFI restrictions),
and when it becomes mandated by law, the tyrant is now in a
position to create the synthesis (new mandates, elimination of
the personal freedom to run whatever you want on your
own computer)...etc....etc.

I wouldn't want to wrap the tin foil /that/ tightly around my head.

I do not believe I am!
Look, not long ago, MS, with their powerful marketing, convinced the
federal government (and most state and local governments)that windows
is the idea desktop env. And it paid off - big time! Unix lost. And what
has been the result? All kinds of malware that brought millions of computers
to caause damage, alfunction or halt. Did that result in massive boycott of
everything MS?
Nop!.
I think that opposition to this may only be effective if there is a large
campaign by Open Systems Users to write all members of Congress to oppose
this in it's current form. The louder such opposition is, the more grease
it will get.

This is simply Microsoft being Microsoft, that's all. I believe that this is a symptom of Microsoft internally realizing that they're losing a little bit of their market power, just slightly, just a bit, and the selected remedy is to tighten the fist even more.
I pessimistically believe that MS will be successful in selling this not only to the local, state and federal levels, but also to the largest system manufactures, which are not that many.They have a lot more marketing clout than we give them credit for. Consumers will by and large quietly go along with it because most of them
are windows users and believe in the marketing hype.

But you do not counter that strategy by helping them tighten the grip. The correct approach would be to oppose this crap in its entirety, and not participate in any way; and stand in opposition. You don't do that by paying $99 for a cert.

Of course not! I think there are some who are tooting the MS tune in this regard. I have read some e-zines - and they sound like idiots, having absolutely no clue about the
implications.
But standing in opposition is no simple nor easy matter. I would not assume that people - by the hundreds of millions and more, should simply boycott all UEFI systems. That will simply not happen. The overwhelming number of Janes and Johns Q. Public
will simply go along because most of them run only windows.

If Microsoft wants to turn this into them versus everyone else, then so be it. Let's go. The fight's on.
Only some of the Open Source people will fight.
My pessimism as been correct for many many years :)


But you don't fight this by coming over to their side. That makes no logical sense.
Of course not! But....
Suppose - just suppose - that there are many people who use Open Source, and
even seem to support it, but are, in some fashion, pro MS, and will try to downplay
the negatives of QEFI and toot it's marketing hype.
And to  increase the suspicion, suppose there are key people in
the Open Source development culture, who are going to comply
with this (UEFI) and support it. I think THAT is also a strong possibility.
MS has a lot more clout and contacts than we give them credit for. They
certainly have the huge amount of cash with which to accomplish this.

To all those who say that free software also benefits from having a secured bootloader: I agree. But the problem is that a secured, signed bootloader cannot simultaneously support both free and non-free OSes on the same hardware. Linux can benefit from a signed bootloader. So can Microsoft's OS. But the benefits each one gets are completely different, and Microsoft gets no benefit from a having a signed bootloader if it also supports a free OS, which then gets used to bypass all protections, completely different ones, that a signed bootloader gives to a non-free OS. These are the facts of life, the birds and the bees, folks.

Microsoft isn't stupid. They understand it as well. Which is why they will never sign a bootloader for a free OS, no matter what their PR is spinning.

All the bleating about malware protection is utter crap. Although it'll stop that, that's not why Microsoft wants a signed bootloader. Malware protection is just icing on the cake, and a convenient sock puppet.

This is really a sucker bet: who really wants to bet me that Microsoft will sign a bootloader for Linux as it exists right now, with all the present, documented capabilities of Linux unmodified?
Actually, I am willing to bet that MS will convince a lot of the sheep that Linux is Malware.

How much anyone wants to bet on that? Come on. Any of you who are asserting that Microsoft will be signing a bootloader shim for an open Linux kernel, Fedora, Debian, or any other distro, in exchange for $99, any day now: do you feel as confidently of that, as I am of precisely the opposite?
There is another possibility.
What if MS will indeed sign only certain Open Source distros (such as RHEL) - FOR A FEE.
Suddenly, Open Source is no longer free.

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