Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 5th Jan 2011 22:09 UTC
Windows And this is part two of the story: Microsoft has just confirmed the next version of Windows NT (referring to it as NT for clarity's sake) will be available for ARM - or more specifically, SoCs from NVIDIA, Qualcomm, and Texas Instruments. Also announced today at CES is Microsoft Office for ARM. Both Windows NT and Microsoft Office were shown running on ARM during a press conference for the fact at CES in Las Vegas.
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RE[5]: BC
by malxau on Thu 6th Jan 2011 15:20 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: BC"
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True (providing one goes through the step of making the script executable after downloading it). This is an excellent reason to avoid the practice of simply downloading software from some random site, making it executable, and then running it. Fortuantely, it is entirely possible to install and run a complete Linux desktop (open source) software ensemble without ever once having to do such a thing.


1. It is possible, but very, very difficult, to get a booting system without taking binary code from a source you didn't generate yourself. Typically people use distributions as a starting point. But just like binary code on Windows, this relies on a chain of trust - that the binaries are not malware infested. If I want to create my own distribution tomorrow, users can't know whether to trust me or not. In the end, users have to decide trust by word of mouth - what works, what doesn't - just like Windows.

2. Even when compiling by source, it's common to blindly execute code. Consider how autoconf/configure scripts work. Do you really read configure scripts before running them? Source availability gives a means to ensure trustworthiness, but that is only as effective as user habits. As the volume of source running on people's machines increases, and assuming a human's ability to read code does not increase, the practicality of reviewing code decreases over time. Again, this relies on others reviewing the code, and building up communities based on which code is trustworthy and which isn't, which isn't that different to binary components above.

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