Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 17th Sep 2007 15:17 UTC, submitted by Rahul
Legal Microsoft suffered a stunning defeat on Monday when a European Union court backed a European Commission ruling that the US software giant illegally abused its market power to crush competitors. The European Union's second-highest court dismissed the company's appeal on all substantive points of the 2004 antitrustruling. The court said Microsoft, the world's largest software maker, was unjustified in tying new applications to its Windows operating system in a way that harmed consumer choice. The verdict, which may be appealed only on points of law and not of fact, could force Microsoft to change its business practices.
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RE
by Kroc on Mon 17th Sep 2007 15:30 UTC
Kroc
Member since:
2005-11-10

Reminds me of a funny quote:
"Microsoft is not a software company, it is an abuse company, which uses software to deliver abuse." ;)

They are not going to change their ways, end of. People should be used to the idea, and be thinking about alternatives, one way or another.

Edited 2007-09-17 15:30

Reply Score: 17

RE
by kaiwai on Mon 17th Sep 2007 15:37 in reply to "RE"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

This reminds me of the whole OJ Simpson trial; it seems that given the current situation he is in, Karma has come back to bite him on the behind.

Its interesting how the universe happens to balance things out; Farwell spews vile hatred against gays and he dies of pneumonia.

They are not going to change their ways, end of. People should be used to the idea, and be thinking about alternatives, one way or another.


The unfortunate thing is, vendors like Adobe, Quicken, and MYOB lock the customers into Windows by their refusal to either port or even work with wine to get their application working with *NIX in a stable manner.

I can assure you, if every software company said tomorrow they're going to create a *NIX version of their application, there would be a mass exodus from Windows - that is the only thing holding people to Windows, application availability. Its the only thing Windows actually has going for it; it certainly doesn't have any advantage in any other areas.

What I would have loved to see with this ruling was FORCING Microsoft to GIVE AWAY their technology specifications free of charge - no royalties, no NDA's, everything disclosed and out in the open. When it is changed in Windows, the specification is updated within 24 hours of the change within Windows.

Its unfortunate that regulators don't get it. If you want Microsoft to do something, you need to explicitly state EVERYTHING you want them to do; you can't make assumptions that they'll do something - if you do, they'll try to weasel out of it. You need to explicitly state what they must do to comply. If that means a 10,000 page book, then so be it.

Reply Parent Score: 11

RE
by Kroc on Mon 17th Sep 2007 16:02 in reply to "RE"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Whilst Application support isn't perfect on all alternatives, it is still adequate for the largest portion of users, including power users like myself.

If there's one universal rule of life, it's that no matter what problem you have, as soon as you discuss it, somebody else has had a lot worse. The same can be said of switching platforms:

When coming up with reasons to not leave Windows, people should bear in mind:
* There are many people that have switched who used to use precisely the same application set as you - you are not the only person who uses those applications, remember.

* There are alternatives and entirely different paths you can take for tasks that tie you to Windows. I gave up on VB6 and ASP, and learnt PHP. There is always someone else out there who has tried harder than you to switch and done it successfully. Excuses are one thing, reasons are another.

* I did it. It's not impossible. You just have to wake up and smell the coffee, and start taking baby steps away from Microsoft. If you're using a pirate copy of Office, get Open Office, or any alternative. If you use Windows only technologies, use your spare time to start learning cross-platform technologies so that you can one day shift OSes without affecting your work.

In this day and age "Application X isn't available on Platform Y" isn't a reason anymore. You can virtualise Windows on any other platform, and then learn new alternatives entirely - and the last, most important part:

* You will be better off.

Reply Parent Score: 13

RE
by BrandonTurner on Mon 17th Sep 2007 17:09 in reply to "RE"
BrandonTurner Member since:
2006-01-27

"You need to explicitly state what they must do to comply. If that means a 10,000 page book, then so be it."

I swear that one time MS made a 6,000 page book explaining it specifications and people just complained it was too long...

Reply Parent Score: 6

v RE
by -pekr- on Mon 17th Sep 2007 18:14 in reply to "RE"
RE
by dsmogor on Tue 18th Sep 2007 08:15 in reply to "RE"
dsmogor Member since:
2005-09-01

I cannot agree here. Ms still goes to great lenghts to secure Windows as dependable and consistent platform for commercial, closed source software. No other platform have achieved such combination of wideness and stability of api/abi over the years. The only legitimate serious desktop competitor-linux is a showcase of failure in this area.

Still I agree that MS business model is mostly based on extorting their market power than delivering innovation (which they try from time to time but with meager results). Hopefully the law based appeal wont take ages and sw devs around the world will see some fruits of this in this decade, besides EC draining money from MS.

Edited 2007-09-18 08:18

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE ADobe locks users into Windows
by jabbotts on Tue 18th Sep 2007 13:11 in reply to "RE"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

At least Adobe also publishes osX versions of there software. It would be nice if they also offered ports to other Unix like OS being how easy it is to simply recompile the osX/BSD source.

Of course, no one expects Adobe to give Photoshop away for free but your quite right, it'd be nice if they opened themselves up to the rest of the market not just Win32/64 and osX.

Reply Parent Score: 0

RE
by vimh on Mon 17th Sep 2007 16:14 in reply to "RE"
vimh Member since:
2006-02-04

I like that quote. But as for alternatives I don't know. It's not so much vender lock in that I'm concerned with but rather but rather freedom to move within the scope of my chosen playground. To be perfectly honest, I feel more restricted with some MS alternatives than I do with MS themselves.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE
by Kroc on Mon 17th Sep 2007 16:18 in reply to "RE"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

I welcome elaboration on the aspect. I suspect there are many users here who want insight on specific restrictions you feel from MS alternatives.

Reply Parent Score: 4

RE: Restrictions
by gustl on Wed 19th Sep 2007 14:47 in reply to "RE"
gustl Member since:
2006-01-19

In a free software world the only limitation is your knowledge.

Of course, if you think that a GNU/Linux distribution is oh so hard to learn, because your friend XYZ tried and failed, then you might feel unfree, but that is only a very subjective and limited unfreeness.

Think about it: No more worries about copying applications illegaly, no more shelling out good money and finding out, that the application did not deliver what you assumed it would. Just download, and try it out, if it suits you, use it at your home, job and give it to your friends. Or make some money supporting an application, or give some money by buying support from someone.

Reply Parent Score: 2