Feeds

FSF launches Windows 7 anti-upgrade letter campaign

Less is more "sins"

High performance access to file storage

The Free Software Foundation is mobilizing against Windows 7 with a campaign to dissuade IT decision makers from installing the operating system.

The group has sent letters to 499 of the top Fortune 500 organizations, warning that a move to Windows 7 will increase their dependence on Microsoft and encouraging the use of GNU/Linux on PCs instead. The missing letter recipient was Microsoft.

The FSF is asking for donations to fund a further round of letters and has created a website - Windows7sins.org - that states its case against using the proprietary Windows 7.

A donation of $25 will support 50 letters, and $100 will mean 200 letters get sent to decision makers. The group has also asked people to submit details of potential recipients.

The Windows7sins site mentions a number of familiar arguments against Microsoft and Windows (its monopoly status breeds lack of choice so Windows is pre-installed on most PCs), and it also mentions weakness on security and privacy violations from Windows Genuine Advantage as it inspects users' hard drives.

WGA actually validates the Windows license on a PC at log-on and during updates through a component installed on the hard drive.

Businesses typically parlay such concerns in the interests of continuity of IT and practicality, so while these issues will matter to the FSF and free and open-source advocates in general, recipients of the FSF's letters will likely overlook these points as esoteric and idealistic.

However, the FSF has hit two nerves that could cause organizations to think twice and either re-assess what PCs should go to Linux or even OS X instead of Windows 7, or - at the very least - cause organizations to bargain hard with Microsoft to cut a special price deal.

The first nerve is Microsoft's product upgrade and support cycles.

The FSF has raised the issue that support for older versions of Windows begins to come to an end as newer versions of the operating system are released. Over time, end users are either forced to upgrade, pay for additional support, or fix things themselves.

According to the FSF, Linux doesn't tie you into the Microsoft treadmill because the raw code is openly available so that you or third parties can keep systems going and not rely on one company.

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Windows 8.1, which you probably haven't upgraded to yet, ALREADY OBSOLETE
Pre-Update versions of new Windows version will no longer support patches
Android engineer: We DIDN'T copy Apple OR follow Samsung's orders
Veep testifies for Samsung during Apple patent trial
OpenSSL Heartbleed: Bloody nose for open-source bleeding hearts
Bloke behind the cockup says not enough people are helping crucial crypto project
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Half of Twitter's 'active users' are SILENT STALKERS
Nearly 50% have NEVER tweeted a word
Windows XP still has 27 per cent market share on its deathbed
Windows 7 making some gains on XP Death Day
Internet-of-stuff startup dumps NoSQL for ... SQL?
NoSQL taste great at first but lacks proper nutrients, says startup cloud whiz
US taxman blows Win XP deadline, must now spend millions on custom support
Gov't IT likened to 'a Model T with a lot of things on top of it'
Microsoft TIER SMEAR changes app prices whether devs ask or not
Some go up, some go down, Redmond goes silent
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.