Feeds

Security rivals tried to 'castrate' Vista - Gates

OS keeps its cojones

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Despite antitrust pressures and complaints from competitors, Microsoft will be able to ship Vista without dropping features, according to Microsoft chairman Bill Gates. Gates told reporters attending Microsoft's TechEd conference in Barcelona that the software giant had discussed features in the next version of its operating system "every step of the way".

Microsoft is, of course, no stranger to regulatory scrutiny. In the case of Vista the main regulatory concerns have stemmed from the European prompted, in part, by security rivals such as Symantec, which sent representatives to Brussels to air its concerns over security features in the forthcoming OS and McAfee, which placed ads in the Financial Times highlighting similar concerns over the same issue.

Gates accused Microsoft partners turned rival in consumer security of trying to stymie innovation accusing them of trying to get regulators to "castrate" 1 Vista, the Wall Street Journal reports. Gates, whose comments came as Microsoft released the final version of Vista to manufacturers, insisted the main innovations in Vista including improvements to the security of Windows and performance improvements, remain in place. "No [antitrust regulators] insisted security features come out of Vista," Gates said.

Redmond is offering Windows Defender (the fruits of the Giant anti-spyware acquisition in 2004) as a component of Vista or as a download at no additional cost. Other security improvements include BitLocker Drive Encryption and anti-phishing technology in IE7. Most of the complaints from security vendors have centered around Kernel Patch Protection, designed to defend against rootkits and due to ship with the 64bit version of the OS. The feature was actually debuted with 64bit versions of XP and Win 2003 but throughout the later stages of the development process a number of security vendors complained the feature made it difficult for them to plug in third-party anti-malware and intrusion prevention technologies.

Security rivals such as Symantec and McAfee accused Microsoft of abusing its dominant market position to impede their development efforts while other vendors (such as Kaspersky and Sophos) said they had no such problem.

Bundling software technologies with Windows has created antitrust problems for Microsoft in the past. In 2004, EU regulators slapped a $634.4m fine in Microsoft over the inclusion of Windows Media Player as a core component of the OS, among other issues. ®

Bootnote

1 If cutting off the security features of Vista would "castrate" Windows does that means Kernel Patch Protection and Windows Defender are bollocks? We ought to be told.

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Sway: Microsoft's new Office app doesn't have an Undo function
Content aggregation, meet the workplace ... oh
Sign off my IT project or I’ll PHONE your MUM
Honestly, it’s a piece of piss
Return of the Jedi – Apache reclaims web server crown
.london, .hamburg and .公司 - that's .com in Chinese - storm the web server charts
NetWare sales revive in China thanks to that man Snowden
If it ain't Microsoft, it's in fashion behind the Great Firewall
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.