Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 13th Jan 2012 16:20 UTC, submitted by moondevil
Windows And so the war on general computing continues. Were you looking forward to ARM laptops and maybe even desktops now that Windows 8 will also be released for ARM? I personally was, because I'd much rather have a thin, but fast and economical machine than a beastly Intel PC. Sadly, it turns out that all our fears regarding UEFI's Secure Boot feature were justified: Microsoft prohibits OEMs from allowing you to install anything other than Windows 8 on ARM devices (the Software Freedom Law Center has more).
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The EU/US Justice department should really step in. I'm going to write a couple letters to a few US Senators and my friends who work for them.

Exactly.. you beat me too it. I was just about to suggest that everyone on here that see this as a potential *big issue* write to their local MEP! (i always forget this isn't a uk/european site, dunno why.

I'm also just about to try and write a carefully crafted letter to AVAAZ too (normally they campaign about ostensibly 'much bigger' issues - human rights issues and indescretions - generally, large questions or hot topics around war, freedom and minority rights.

But they've started petitions around SOPA for instance too, and I believe this type of activity could *theoretically* become a bigger one eventually. Firstly I don't think SOPA will pass at it stands, and I like to hope that even if a lot of the 'core net' in the US became rather too censored, stifling and stodgy, that there's tools like tor alright in the wild, various alternative distributed DNS systems at least being investigated already and generally a big enough hacker community and probably enough wireless e.g. wimax like technologies that *could* eventually be grown into a relatively uncontrollable internet 1.1 (rather than internet2) - as it should be!

But all that type of internet freedom fighting activity, if it were even necessary, could be severely hindered or at least slowed if in several years time, the majority of windows laptops and tablets were locked into ARM via these secure boot mechanisms.

And to those that have suggested that hackers could eventually bypass this - well, i'm no cryptographic expert, but I believe if implementally correctly as intended that this won't possible, not without soldering or swapping UEFI chips or something like that. And that basically means for 99.9% of folk, their shiny new machines will be unrootable probably and if Microsoft want to force their customers to only run signed code etc, then, ..well, I can imagine TOR and similar for instance might never get signed under some scary but possible future circumstances.

paranoid. maybe a little. just today

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