The ability to boot your own hardware to an operating system of your choice is on the line with the lock in plans Microsoft have been pushing for nearly 10 years coming to fruit in windows 8, plans that are likely to ensure Linux users are left out in the cold. http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/10/18/fsf_windows_8_campaign/
PC makers are being lobbied to install Windows 8 on machines in a way that will afford users the freedom to boot Linux or any other operating system.
The Free Software Foundation (FSF) is urging PC users to sign a statement demanding that OEMs which implement Windows 8's UEFI Secure Boot do so in a way that allows individuals to disable it, or that the PC makers provide a "sure-fire way" to install and run an operating system of the user's choice.
The statement says that giving this choice will protect users' rights and security.The FSF has also hinted at a boycott on buying Windows 8 PCs. "We commit that we will neither purchase nor recommend computers that strip users of this critical freedom, and we will actively urge people in our communities to avoid such jailed systems," the FSF concludes.
Windows 8's Secure Boot was branded "Restricted Boot" by the FSF because "it would be a disastrous restriction on computer users and not a security feature at all".
The FSF's website became suddenly unavailable Tuesday morning due to "technical problems" once word of the campaign began to spread.
Many of you here will have read about the Trusted Computing Platform, an initiative to lock operating systems securely from boot to running stage, on paper its an idea that will aid a lot of folks but looking deeper its not so helpful as it will give Microsoft a monopoly on such lock in systems and starve out any new innovators and of course unfavoured operating systems like Linux and any other O/s that has no one to champion it.
Of course this will in time lead to a smaller market with higher software prices and would in turn limit the hardware manufacturing base to those who do as MS demand and those who are blocked from allowing their hardware from running any new windows versions, its going to be a mess if left unchecked.
The free software foundation are asking for the support of all PC users to stop this madness before it gets embedded in such a way that it cannot be undone, the time to act is now
Make your way here to see how you can help keep the market un-monopolised and maintain your right of O/s Choice. http://www.fsf.org/campaigns/secure-boot-vs-restricted-boot/statement