One of the reasons – if not the sole reason – for Windows’ dominating presence as an, no, as THE desktop operating system is the single fact that it comes preinstalled on most of the computers you get from the stores today. Yeah, look around at any mailorder store or at your local brick and mortar mall, look at Walmart or whatever is your discounter of choice, and you’ll see 90% of their computers are prefabricated Windows machines. The rest are Macs. None come with Linux preinstalled or like totally empty (which would be the perfect state for my taste). Windows is the one OS to rule them all! Or, to say it slightly altered: Win is the one OS to rule the mall. 🙂
Well, let’s talk about that and see if it’s really as they claim it is … or if it’s just the continued very old marketing method they are using since like forever. You gotta see that things are maybe a bit different in the States and Japan/Korea than in the EU and the rest of the world. I have no clue about the American retail market but tell me how many PCs can you buy without any OS preinstalled? In Germany it’s only just a little handful but I see the number is steadily growing. HP, Asus and Acer even making special lines of laptops without Win installed on them. I’m myself thinking about buying a Acer netbook without Windoze on it as my travelmachine. You may ask what it’s good for, you may tell me that it’s really of no importance since a preinstalled Windows won’t cost you a dime and is easily wiped off the platter if you so wish.
Ya, it should be so easy: you shouldn’t even need to delete and refomat the hard drive, just install a Linux OS and it wipes and reformats and does everything for you. Cool. If it weren’t for Microsofts attempts to make life a little harder for all of us if we wanna swap OSes. They came up with UEFI and Secure Boot and all that fancy technical stuff just in order to keep their own OS on your (YOUR! Not their) computer.
So, now with the advent of the latest Windows we see already a strenghtened attempt to regain the marketshare they lost to free and open source software in the last couple years. They made Win10 free! Or so. Or kinda that, or similar. So some self-acclaimed experts claim. Fortunately there are still some clever journos out there, to write about which of the claims are really true.
So we see it’s all relative. Win10 isn’t a free for all, hackers and pirates still aren’t welcome to share the spoils. They never were, Win10 was never meant to be a free OS. Not even in the sense of Free Beer, which doesn’t really stand for freedom in the first place. So you may read thru the article and find out about the caveats and t’s & c’s of Win10 distribution. You might find that for you the update is indeed free, since you’re in the legal posession of an old Win7 (or newer) license … or you may just fuck that and open your eyes a little wider and start to truly see!
You are paying for Windows! You always did. It was never free for you. Just because it comes bundled with your new PC doesn’t mean it’s free. The manufacturer of your PC paid for it, and so are you. It’s a chain of flowing money (profit) and in the end you’re paying for it all. Of course the price for your bundled Windows is prolly cheaper as if you’re gonna buy a copy off the shelf but then you mostly never get the original installation medium, only a recover DVD or something silly. Still you’re the beginning of the chain, you’re paying … and at the end sits M$ cashing in. It’s a really simple mechanism, commerce 101, everybody knows theoretically how it works but nobody seems to get it. It’s like people are grabbing straws, looking desperately for reasons that explain why they can’t get rid of Windows, why they gotta stick with it and pay for it thru the nose. It’s the mental lazyness I was referring to in an earlier article. But Microsoft isn’t lazy. They are very busy and actively supporting your pursuit for lazyness. Oh, guess what? I gotta rephrase that. You’re making Microsoft’s job so easy they themself can also be lazy. All they gotta do in instrumentalizing your lazyness and make it work for their own gain. Just spread some half-truthes, some outright lies, some imagined threats, some of the good old bullying, some show of muscles and here we are, pay some lowly journos and forum trolls, give some handouts to the fanbois … and all is back to the good old days of total market domination.
So, some PC manufacturers won’t allow you to switch the UEFI mode off, some won’t allow you to get rid of Secure Boot. »Woah, that’s so technical, Orca you lost me.« Well, trust me, I don’t really know what these BIOS add-ons are doing exactly myself. Remember, Orca ain’t a geek, just an open source advocate, more interested in the political and philosophical side and in keeping it easy than in geeking out on you guys. UEFI/Secure Boot basically is a brutal way to defend the Win installation on your PC, with claws and teeth and in the case of Secure Boot up to *gulps self destruction. No, really, Microsoft’s Secure Boot recognizes your Linux installation disc or USB stick as a … VIRUS! WTF? And let’s not forget here, let me say it once again, just in case it’s not clear for some of you:
That computer thing on/besides/under your desk/on your lap/in your bed … it is YOURS! It’s up to you to do with it as you fukn please! Install Windows, install Linux, install BSD, install Unix, you can even try to install MacOS on it … but let’s not open that can of worms right now. Anyway, what I wanted to say is it’s totally in your discretion what you do with your hardware. Totally. So how come most people wouldn’t hesitate throwing their machine outta the window but couldn’t imagine throwing Windows outta their machine?