Archive for September, 2011
Microsoft chose to directly respond to confusion surrounding its Windows 8 Secure Boot feature on Thursday.
Microsoft’s Windows chief, Steven Sinofsky, admitted there had been some comments recently that “synthesize scenarios that are not the case” around Microsoft’s work with UEFI. Redhat employee Matthew Garrett speculated that OEM machines that ship with copies of Windows 8 may lock out support for Linux installations. Garrett highlighted Microsoft’s new Secure Build OEM requirements for Windows 8 systems. Sinofsky rejected the claims in a blog post on Thursday and stated that Microsoft is simply taking advantage of new technologies to improve the security of Windows. “We are introducing capabilities that provide a no-compromise approach to security to customers that seek this out while at the same time full and complete control over the PC continues to be available,” said Sinofsky.
Tony Mangefeste on Microsoft’s Ecosystem team revealed that Microsoft is working closely with its OEM partners to improve the security experience of Windows. “Microsoft supports OEMs having the flexibility to decide who manages security certificates and how to allow customers to import and manage those certificates, and manage secured boot,” says Mangefeste. ”We believe it is important to support this flexibility to the OEMs and to allow our customers to decide how they want to manage their systems.” Mangefeste believes the customer is ultimately in control of their PC. “Microsoft’s philosophy is to provide customers with the best experience first, and allow them to make decisions themselves. We work with our OEM ecosystem to provide customers with this flexibility.”
Microsoft chose to highlight the flexible approach by reminding people that the Samsung tablet, with Windows 8 Developer Preview, handed out at BUILD contains the ability to disable the firmware Secure Boot feature. “OEMs are free to choose how to enable this support,” says Mangefeste. “Windows merely did work to provide great OS support for a scenario we believe many will find valuable across consumers and enterprise customers.” Microsoft summarized its work with UEFI:
- UEFI allows firmware to implement a security policy
- Secured boot is a UEFI protocol not a Windows 8 feature
- UEFI secured boot is part of Windows 8 secured boot architecture
- If desired, Windows 8 utilizes secured boot to ensure that the pre-OS environment is secure
- Secured boot doesn’t “lock out” operating system loaders, but is is a policy that allows firmware to validate authenticity of components
- OEMs have the ability to customize their firmware to meet the needs of their customers by customizing the level of certificate and policy management on their platform
- Microsoft does not mandate or control the settings on PC firmware that control or enable secured boot from any operating system other than Windows
Image Credit: Microsoft Corporation
Network World – HP has started laying off workers associated with last year’s billion-dollar acquisition of Palm, as it closes down the mobile device business it planned to base on Palm’s webOS. The news comes almost exactly a month after HP announced a sweeping reorganization and refocusing of its business.
News reports say that HP has confirmed the layoffs have begun, but declined to say how many will end up with pink slips. AllThingsD, The Wall Street Journal’s tech blog, says the number could reach 525. More >
A Samsungtablet expected to be shown at a Microsoft conference next week will be powered by an Intel chip, according to a source familiar with the device.
The Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 currently on the market runs the Android operating system and uses an Nvidia processor.
Windows chief Steven Sinofsky is expected shows off an early version of Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system running on a tablet from Samsung at the BUILD developers conference next week in Anaheim, Calif.
Desktop has been used by tens of millions of people and we’ve been humbled by its usage and great user feedback. However, over the past seven years we’ve also witnessed some big changes in how users store and access their own data, with many moving to web-based applications. There has been a significant shift from local to cloud-based storage and computing, as well as integration of Google Desktop functionality (like local search) into most modern operating systems. This is a positive development for users and we’re excited that most people now have instant access to their personal information. As such, we’ll be discontinuing support for Google Desktop, including all of the associated APIs, services, plugins and gadgets.
As of September 14, Google Desktop will no longer be available for download, and existing installations will not be updated to include new features or fixes.
Thanks again to all of our users. It’s been a fun journey.
Posted by the Google Desktop Team
September 02, 2011, 7:56 PM EDT By Andy Fixmer(Updates with Dish service starting in fifth paragraph.)
Sept. 2 (Bloomberg) — Hulu LLC, the video website put up for sale by its media company owners, has received as many as five first-round bids, including one from Dish Network Corp., a person with knowledge of the situation said.
Each offer included terms for programming rights, said the person, who sought anonymity because the talks are private.
Hulu’s owners, Walt Disney Co., News Corp., Comcast Corp. and Providence Equity Partners Inc., will grant a successful buyer five years of rights to TV shows, including two years of exclusivity, people said on July 19. Google Inc., Yahoo Inc. and Amazon.com Inc. were preparing offers for Los Angeles-based Hulu ahead of last weekend’s deadline, a person said earlier.
Jen Chiu, a Hulu spokeswoman, declined to comment, as did Marc Lumpkin, a spokesman for Englewood, Colorado-based Dish.
Dish, the second largest U.S. satellite-TV provider, is bidding on Hulu as the company separately plans to introduce a Blockbuster streaming-movie service to compete with Netflix Inc. next month, a person said today.
Dish has been negotiating for rights with studios since it acquired Blockbuster, which already had certain contracts in place. The offering is expected to include movies from Starz LLC, said the person. Starz said yesterday it had halted talks with Netflix to renew an online-viewing deal for next year.
Hulu’s sale process is moving along on schedule, Chase Carey, chief operating officer of News Corp., said on a Aug. 10 conference call. It’s uncertain a deal will be reached, he said.
“We’ll see where it ultimately ends up,” Carey said. “For us it’s still a decision to see what it looks like at the end, and does it make sense to pursue that path, or does it make sense for us to stay in an ownership position and continue to have it driven by content owners.”
Bids were expected to range from $500 million to $2 billion, the Wall Street Journal reported Aug. 22. Hulu’s owners hired Morgan Stanley and Guggenheim Partners in July to field interest for the site after the company received interest from a potential suitor.
Hulu, which began offering its online TV service in Japan on Sept. 1, carries ABC, NBC and Fox TV shows after the programs air on the networks. The site, which inserts ads into programs, offers limited free episodes and more expansive access with a $7.99 a month HuluPlus subscription.
The website, which didn’t go forward with an initial public offering that may have given it $2 billion in market value, said it will exceed 1 million subscribers by the end of August. Hulu may approach $500 million in revenue in 2011, Kilar April 4 on Hulu’s website, citing trends at the time.
Hulu Plus is available on Apple Inc.’s iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. It’s also accessible through Microsoft Corp.’s XBox video-game console, Sony Corp.’s PlayStation 3 and on phones using Google Inc.’s Android operating system, including the HTC Thunderbolt.
–With assistance from Alex Sherman in New York. Editors: Rob Golum, Anthony Palazzo
To contact the reporter on this story: Andy Fixmer in Los Angeles at [email protected]
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Palazzo at [email protected]