That system is Wine, a software “go-between” that lets users run Windows applications without a copy of Microsoft Windows. Wine isn’t an operating system in its own right, just a layer that sits on top of free systems like Linux. It doesn’t run every Windows program but offers seamless compatibility on many of the most recent and popular applications. Used in conjunction with a free graphical operating system like Ubuntu, it’s an option that could save you up to £80 on Microsoft’s current asking price.
My how the times have changed. At one point, HP and Microsoft were sharing friendship bracelets and having slumber parties. In fact, over the last decade, HP was a major player with Microsoft. Those days are gone. The juggernaut that was once Microsoft is slowly toppling and companies like HP are seeing the writing on the wall. That writing includes the likes of Android, Linux, iOS -- platforms perfect for mobile and embedded systems.
To that end, Hewlett Packard has decided to kick Microsoft to the curb and develop their own operating system that will power all of their future devices. In particular, HP is working on a device they call "The Machine." This new device will be made up of several new technologies -- including a new type of memory -- and will run a new operating system based on...
Wait for it...
Looking around the BIOS let me set the Secure Boot to boot other OSes. It wouldn't let me just disable it completely. I set the boot order to boot the DVD drive first and tried to run those Linux live disks. Mageia 4 wasn't going to let me change the video driver from VESA no matter what. Cinnamon crashed once loading NVIDIA drivers in Mint 17. openSUSE behaved the best in giving me nice video support. I figured I'd install openSUSE and use it until Mint 17 came out in the KDE version.
Instead, the Chinese government is calling for the increased purchase and development of domestically developed operating systems, specifically those created on Linux. Although the ban of Windows 8 does not directly affect the general public, Sina News reports that the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology is pushing for domestic users to gravitate from Windows XP to domestic operating systems too. It's not too far fetched an idea, either–China has a long history of successfully developing domestic software. The messaging software QQ, for example, is more popular than the foreign-developed MSN, since it was specifically developed to cater to Chinese people's sensibilities.
ADI technology analyst Tyler White speculated that two underlying market forces are boosting Google's numbers. “First, device defaults matter,” White said. “Internet Explorer leverages its Windows OS dominance to gain share as the default Web browser for the majority of people online. Today mobile OS is more important, giving Google and Apple a leg up with default status on Android and iOS.”
Okay, I hate to be a Negative Ned here, but I'm firmly in the "trust but verify" camp when it comes to Microsoft and open source. Yes, a new CEO and other changes may be helping Microsoft to adjust to living in an open source world. But change never comes easy or fast in such a large organization, so I think the jury is still out on whether or not Microsoft has really changed for the better when it comes to open source software.
Also, I've never forgotten the company's "embrace, extend, extinguish" strategy that they used in the past to destroy competitive software products. That alone is reason enough to keep a wary eye on Microsoft's involvement with any open source project. Perhaps the company really has changed, but maybe it hasn't. I think it bears watching for at least another few years to see if enduring change has really set in or not.
China has stepped up its war on Microsoft's Windows 8 operating system with a report in state-backed media that questions the security of the software.
In a one and a half minute segment aired on China's CCTV television channel, journalists reported that the Chinese government is concerned by the security of the Windows 8 software and is increasing efforts to develop its own rival system.
"Microsoft would no longer open its Windows 8 source code to the Chinese government, however the security scheme of the Windows 8 operating system is designed to provide better access for Microsoft to users' database. For China it's a big challenge for our cybersecurity," said Yang Min, a professor at China's Fudan University, through a translator.
"Your identity, account, contact book, phone numbers, all this data can be put together for big data analysis," explains another academic, Ni Guangnam. "The US has a law that requires anyone that has this data to report to the government. The data might be a good way for the US to monitor other countries."
This report follows the Chinese government banning Windows 8 from a chunk of its public sector PCs in late-May.
In March 2013, El Reg reported that Canonical had partnered with various Chinese government agencies to develop and support a Linux distribution named Ubuntu Kylin for the country. Given this television segment, we imagine installations of that OS are about to increase.
The history of Linux in China is chequered. Android is doing extremely well there, even if it tends to be varieties that are more or less independent from Google (no bad thing.) But on the desktop, GNU/Linux has had a pretty disastrous showing. That's strange, because you would think that the Chinese authorities would jump at the chance to adopt a free operating system that was independent of the US, and which could be inspected for NSA backdoors even before the current Snowden leaks showed why that would be a good idea.
With Windows 8 now banned from being installed on Chinese government computers, domestic operating system (OS) developers are itching for a niche in the world's biggest PC market.
The country's relatively large OS developers, including China Standard Software Co. and NFS China among others, have fresh opportunities, but their products face long and tough tests.
Windows 8 was banned from all desktops, laptops and tablet PCs purchased by central state organs last week. The announcement made by the Central Government Procurement Center did not make clear whether other Windows products were prohibited as well.