Feeds

Tech support blog removes Toshiba manuals after legal letter

Laptop-maker says service manuals contain proprietary info

High performance access to file storage

An Australian blogger whose site offers an archive of service manuals for laptop computers has complied with a request from Toshiba Australia's lawyers to remove the company's documentation from his site.

Tim Hicks' Future Proof blog is the field service's engineer's personal project and aims, he told The Reg, to provide a resource for laptop owners seeking drivers or service information.

“I started it when I worked in a computer shop,” Hicks told The Reg. “It just grew and grew. People will dig up an old laptop and want to play with it, but it is hard to find the documents. I thought collecting them would be a public service.”

The manuals on the site are service manuals, documents intended to help those willing or authorised to repair computers, rather than documentation for end-users.

Hicks' blog says Toshiba requested he remove the service manuals on four grounds, one of which is that they are copyrighted material. The blog also says Toshiba argued “We are concerned that by providing the manuals to unqualified person [sic] you may be endangering their well-being” and that “The manuals are only available to Toshiba authorised service providers under strict confidentiality agreements.” The laptop-maker also feels the manuals include “proprietary information”, presumably regarding laptop design.

Hicks says the likes of Dell, Lenovo and HP make those documents available for the public to download, but Toshiba distributes them only to authorised repairers. Hicks finds that peculiar, but nevertheless complied with Toshiba's request as he has no desire to become involved in a legal dispute.

Hicks has removed the manuals from his site and says correspondence from Toshiba indicates the company is satisfied the matter is at an end. He will, however, continue to post service manuals to his site.

“It has been argued that I am doing a public service,” he said. “It is better for those manuals to be out there. If the laptop is out of warranty, what does the vendor care?”

Toshiba said, in a statement issued to The Reg, that "It is company policy that Toshiba (Australia) Pty Limited does not make its service manuals available to the general public.” ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Putin tells Snowden: Russia conducts no US-style mass surveillance
Gov't is too broke for that, Russian prez says
Did a date calculation bug just cost hard-up Co-op Bank £110m?
And just when Brit banking org needs £400m to stay afloat
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Whoever you vote for, Google gets in
Report uncovers giant octopus squid of lobbying influence
Lavabit loses contempt of court appeal over protecting Snowden, customers
Judges rule complaints about government power are too little, too late
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Don't let no-hire pact suit witnesses call Steve Jobs a bullyboy, plead Apple and Google
'Irrelevant' character evidence should be excluded – lawyers
EFF: Feds plan to put 52 MILLION FACES into recognition database
System would identify faces as part of biometrics collection
Ex-Tony Blair adviser is new top boss at UK spy-hive GCHQ
Robert Hannigan to replace Sir Iain Lobban in the autumn
Alphadex fires back at British Gas with overcharging allegation
Brit colo outfit says it paid for 347KVA, has been charged for 1940KVA
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
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.
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.
SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.