Reasons to Avoid Microsoft
MS Windows XP
These pages are a compilation of links and quotes to news articles and
others sources that might help convince you to switch to Linux.
Last 9 Articles
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- TCPA / Palladium Frequently Asked Questions
'So I won't be able to play MP3s on my PC any more?' ...
'...doesn't the law give people a right to reverse engineer
interfaces for compatibility?' ...
'So a `Trusted Computer' is one that can break my security?'
Now you've got it.
- MS Palladium Patent
Microsoft's patent for Palladium [includes] ... 'wherein protecting the
rights-managed data comprises: refusing to load the untrusted program into
- Microsoft discloses security flaws
[Microsoft] has found three security flaws - one critical - in its popular
Internet audio and video software. ... In addition, Microsoft said it has
found four security flaws in its e-commerce Web-site building and management
software. Two flaws were rated as critical.
- MS security hole extravaganza
MS has been sitting on a number of security holes which it's decided
to dump on us all at once. ... MS soft-pedals the severity in classic
form, labeling this one "Moderate." But the eEye bulletin rightly points
out that a target machine can be owned with a single session if the attacker
knows what he's doing. ... Apparently, users had trusted the MS
patch to fix their systems properly. Well it didn't... Apparently, the
[previously reported Gopher exploit] is a bit worse than MS had originally
thought, and affects not [just] IE...
- Win-XP Search Assistant silently downloads files
[The Search Assistant] was establishing a connection with a machine at
Microsoft. 'I did not give Microsoft permission to know what files I am
searching for on my local hard-drive.' ... [When] I performed an Internet
search, the Assistant sent my search terms to the Microsoft site, and also
dropped a session cookie on my machine.
- XP bandwidth brouhaha
The newness of Windows XP -- with its sometimes addled approach to
license restrictions, copy protection, and security -- lends itself to
confusion. [Some] Web sites that claimed XP needlessly consumes 20 percent
of your PC's network bandwidth. ... [Microsoft's XP license agreement]
means using any software other than Microsoft's to view an XP desktop from
Windows 2000 or any other operating system would violate the company's
license agreement, in case you care. 'I use VNC extensively to manage
several hundred desktops daily ... So for me this is a big deal, and a
good reason to stay away from XP until I see significant value added
compared to Win 2000. So far I haven't.'
- ACPI Forced On & Option Disabled in WinXP-Certified Motherboards
It turns out that because of a deal to get WindowsXP certification, the
Dragon-series motherboard ended up having the ability of Enabling/Disabling
ACPI in the BIOS disabled.
- Removing IE would kill Win2k, WinXP, MS, says Redmond
Both Windows XP and Windows 2000 will be rendered inoperable, and
Microsoft will be unable to develop future new operating systems, if
it is forced to separate IE from the operating system, according to court
filings the company made on Friday. ... [An] mail from Bill Gates from
February 1997 [said] it would be important to leverage the OS to make
people use IE instead of Navigator, and there was much else that suggested
bolting the two together was a predatory decision, rather than a technical
- Sharpei virus hits C# note
...the worm uses the Outlook address book to send messages--with a copy
of the virus attached--to every address in the book. It then deletes the
e-mails from the sent folder and removes the copy of itself. On PCs loaded
with Windows XP and other .Net-enabled computers, however, Sharpei would
additionally infect files in four other folders. If those files were opened,
the virus would run again.
- Keygen routine producing valid WinXP product keys?
A cracking system for Windows Product Activation publicised this week may
present Microsoft's anti-piracy system with its most serious problem yet.
... whether or not Microsoft has any way to differentiate between generated
keys and the ones it has issued itself [is the question]. If not, this
generation of WPA is now surely toast.
- Check the fine print
Microsoft has found a creative way to obtain authorization from users
to access their workstations at will. ... 'The idea that Microsoft can
change our software without notifying us is totally unacceptable,' said
one corporate IT manager. 'Any alteration to our standard configuration
can only be rolled out after careful evaluation and testing. Does Microsoft
have no clue?'
- Microsoft's Blind Spot
...when the Internet exploded, Microsoft seemed ill-prepared to retrofit
adequate security into its shaky software base. ... Section 25 of the C#
specification says (I quote verbatim): 'C# provides the ability to write
unsafe code.' ... Adding security to an existing, large insecure system
will, in my judgment, prove an impossible task.
- Microsoft Server Glitch Stalls Security Updates
The Microsoft erver that handles security updates and patches for the
software giant's Windows operating system has apparently experienced
problems since last Thursday. The glitch has prevented users from
downloading fixes for Windows vulnerabilities from Microsoft's security
Web site. ... This reported glitch follows on the heels of a recent warning
from the FBI and many security experts that the latest versions of Windows
-- XP, 2000, ME, and in rare instances 98 -- could leave machines wide open
- Automatic Updates Give XP Users New Headaches
Microsoft Corp. has been issuing security patches and other updates for
Windows XP over the past few weeks-only to have those fixes cause new
problems. XP users said the updates cause systems to become unstable and
some device drivers to stop working. 'The patches are coming with such
unbelievable frequency these days that it's very hard to tell exactly what
is being changed and which patch is causing the problems'... after
installing the latest batch of XP security patches on four systems running
XP Professional, all the systems became unstable.
- W32.Donut [First .NET virus]
This virus targets EXE files that were created for the Microsoft .NET
framework. ... it shows that virus writers are paying close attention to
the new .NET architecture and attempting to learn how to exploit it before
the Framework will be available on most systems.
- FBI, Pentagon Quiz Microsoft on XP
The government's ... interest in the problems with Windows XP
software, which is expected to be widely adopted by consumers,
illustrates U.S. concerns about risks to the Internet.
- FBI urges extra caution with XP bug
The FBI ... warned consumers and corporations Friday night to take new steps
... to protect against hackers who might try to attack major flaws discovered
in the newest version of Windows software.
- Windows Vulnerable to Hack Attacks
Microsoft's [Windows XP], billed as the most secure ever,
contains several serious flaws that allow hackers to steal or
destroy a victim's data files across the Internet or implant rogue
computer software. ... A Microsoft offical acknowledged that the risk to
consumers was unprecendented because the glitches allow hackers to seize
control of all Windows XP operating system software without requiring a
computer user to do anything except connect to the Internet.
- Suspect Claims Al Qaeda Hacked Microsoft
A suspected member of the Al Qaeda terrorist network claimed that Islamic
militants infiltrated Microsoft and sabotaged the company's Windows XP
operating system, according to a source close to Indian police. ...
[Claims were made] that a member or members of Osama bin Laden's Al Qaeda
network, posing as computer programmers, were able to gain employment at
Microsoft and attempted to plant 'trojans, trapdoors, and bugs in Windows
- Raw Sockets, Raw Deal
The Web is already dangerous, but Windows XP's raw sockets could take it
down entirely. The [raw sockets] feature adds some oomph to Web site
attacks. ... 'Microsoft is essentially making it easier to do...'
- Road Runner: We Don't Do Windows XP
Windows XP, the highly anticipated and over-hyped new operating system by
Microsoft Corp. released Wednesday, is already off to a bad start
with one member of the cable Internet industry. Road Runner, the
second-largest cable Internet service provider (ISP) in the nation
with more than 1.4 million subscribers, does not support the
controversial new operating system for its customers and will not support
its use on the cable network.
- Shiver me timbers
[Windows Product Activation] is an irritating control scheme that can ...
require you contact Microsoft ... [to activate (unhinder)] XP's operation.
Microsoft has promoted this new behavior as a means to reduce mass
software piracy ... WPA is dependent on Wpa.dbl, a file stored in XP's
System32 folder. This file is so easy for software counterfeiters to
reproduce that it poses no barrier to them at all... WPA, in truth,
wasn't designed to impede true pirates but to stop novice users from
installing a second copy on a laptop or a child's PC.
- Consumer groups blast Windows XP in report
Four consumer advocacy groups say Microsoft's upcoming Windows XP operating
system will cause 'significant harm' to consumers. ... Windows XP's
integration with other software and its licensing terms 'not only mimic
Microsoft's previous violations of antitrust laws, but also significantly
add to them,' say [the Consumer Federation of America, Consumers Union,
and the US Public Interest Research Group], in [the report
'Windows XP/.Net: Microsoft's Expanding Monopoly']...
- Microsoft drops eleventh hour app blocking into WinXP
'If Microsoft got into the business of deciding which programs you
may run on your system, that's a pretty scary thing. Most companies
don't have the time or resources to go through the 'Microsoft
- The Death of TCP/IP
They don't even have to exploit Windows flaws to be effective.
Any Visual BASIC programmer with a good understanding of how Windows
works can write a virus. All that is needed is a cleverly titled
file attachment payload, and almost anyone can be induced to open it,
spreading the contagion. It is too darned easy to create these programs
that can do billions in damage. ... Unless [raw socket access] is
changed before XP is released, it will mean that millions of new computers
will be manufactured as perfect little virus machines. ... in all likelihood,
there will be massive data security problems, as well as massive damage
to files and property, all as a result of Windows XP.
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