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Microsoft Taking Over the BIOS

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the bios-ain't-done-till-linux-won't-run dept.

Microsoft 989

dtjohnson writes "According to this story, Microsoft has entered into an agreement with BIOS maker Phoenix Technologies to integrate the BIOS with Windows. This has the potential to turn PCs into Windows-only machines and also could result in widespread incorporation of Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology into new PCs. It looks like Microsoft is beginning to flex their marketplace monopoly muscles again, after taking a couple of years off."

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Don't forget... (-1)

SCO$699FeeTroll (695565) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128636)

...to pay your $699 licensing fee you cock-smoking teabaggers.

OH NO M$ TAKEOVER OH MY PHEER (-1)

Proctal Relapse (467579) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128639)

uh like fp or some shittz for the clittz

I AM FUCKING SHAMED (-1)

Proctal Relapse (467579) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128745)

NEW IMPROVED FP VERSION 30 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128642)

Now with even more FP!!

Suckas!

Re:NEW IMPROVED FP VERSION 30 (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128651)

You FAIL it!

Re:NEW IMPROVED FP VERSION 30 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128709)

We deeply regret that an FP of inferior quality was released and a service pack is presently undergoing regression testing and is expected to be available very soon. Please watch for NEW IMPROVED FP VERSION 30.1 coming soon.

Same as what Apple does (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128648)

This is no different of what Apple is doing for years with the Macs: MacOS/X requires Apple's special BIOS to boot and work with.

Except (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128669)

Apple did it without the established market share to back it up. I see this as potentially the most divisive move in computing in the past 10 years. I think a lot of tech savvy folks who run windows (like myself) will switch to Linux in this sort of environment. I have the know-how to do it, I'm just lazy. You teabaggers.

Re:Except (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128744)

And if the BIOS rejects Linux?

How long after Microsoft and Phoenix takes control of nearly the entire BIOS market before this happens? Three years? Five?

Good bye computer age. Hello corporate computing console age.

And now, let's all wait for the trolls with their tired, obligatory aluminum foil beanie comments to reply. It should be amusing.

Re:Same as what Apple does (3, Informative)

Dark Nexus (172808) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128675)

But they don't keep the machine from being able to accept another OS.

Re:Same as what Apple does (3, Insightful)

xoboots (683791) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128739)

It is different. Apple sells the hardware, too. Microsoft is trying to shift the rest of the industry by locking up the current "open" hardware that is currently available.

Well (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128650)

I, for one, welcome our new BIOS controlling overlords.

Re:Well (4, Funny)

donutz (195717) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128668)

I, for one, welcome our new BIOS controlling overlords.

I, for one, welcome the day when people realize that joke just isn't funny anymore.

All your overload joke are belong to us!

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128713)

>I, for one, welcome our new BIOS controlling overlords.

I, for one, welcome the day when people realize that joke just isn't funny anymore.

All your overload joke are belong to us!


'Cause the "All your X are belong to us" jokes are still fresh and funny, right?

Re:Well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128726)

As yoda would say: TYHB LHY ANDH(y)

Re:Well (1)

Trillian_1138 (221423) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128803)

I, for one, welcome our new un-funny overlords.

Thank goodness for LinuxBIOS (4, Interesting)

sleepingsquirrel (587025) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128652)

Looks like we need to start checking to be sure our next motherboard's flash can be reprogrammed with LinuxBIOS [linuxbios.org] .

Re:Thank goodness for LinuxBIOS (1)

Rectum2003 (686009) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128686)

yea but then say goodbye to dualboot... A lot of us are stuck with dual-boot systems because me rely one MS-only software... Now this is the worst news since Palladium...

Re:Thank goodness for LinuxBIOS (5, Informative)

Tauvix (97917) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128791)

According to the LinuxBIOS page, they have successfully booted Win2k off of LinuxBIOS.

The biggest thing I see as a problem is the limited motherboard support of the project. However, I suspect that after the first one or two motherboards come out with this new MS-BIOS on it, community support for porting LinuxBIOS will increase.

Re:Thank goodness for LinuxBIOS (1)

bored_SuSE_user (701483) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128691)

I was *just about* to post about this :-D I am actually planning on getting linux BIOS running on my old box, so I can do stuff like boot off CD which my standard BIOS won't support.

Re:Thank goodness for LinuxBIOS (2, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128830)

it would be nicer if it was standard(to not have 'ms bios')..

as for mobo manufacturers, boy was i glad one day when i was setting up my friends new computer that the cd that came with the mobo was selfbootable with freedos, so that i could get the sata drivers out from it.. since i couldn't remember if there was some way to get(winxp) it to load drivers during the initial setup phase(so that i could install to the drive that was connected to the sata drive).)

though i'm a bit surprised why on earth would phoenix do such business with ms, sure short term monetary gain is always nice but that's not enough to justify going the route ah so many companies have gone that have done similar pacts with ms..

anyways, i'm pretty sure that there will be always pc parts manufacturers willing to cater for non ms crowd too, or provide some other platform boards, there's just so many players in the pc industry to everyone skip that market. diversity is a blessing in the pc field in this, if ms made a closed standard for their drm it wouldn't be pc in the same sense anymore and could be really shooting themselfs in the foot.

Re:Thank goodness for LinuxBIOS (0, Troll)

MrLint (519792) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128834)

Looks like phoenix wants to take a dirt nap. Let see what will happen here. The bios will be used to lock out other OSes (see xbox) and that will stifle competition. So will it be lawsuit or death by market forces?

bleh (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128653)

so now the bios wont be reliable either?

Bozo's (0)

AtariAmarok (451306) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128658)

"I think we're all bozo's on this BIOS"

Courtesy of Firesign Theatre.

whatever (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128660)

fuck you ms

Re:whatever (0)

z0om (115345) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128688)

i second this.

Great (0, Redundant)

ozric99 (162412) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128665)

Now my BIOS is going to email me this file in order for my advice...

BIOS has a new meaning? (5, Funny)

placeclicker (709182) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128671)

Basic Insecure Operating System ?

I think this is outstanding. (2, Interesting)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128672)

Now, I will not even require an OS in order to contract and spread viruses and worms.

It's only a matter of time before Microsoft's superior technology inovators develop a compression algorythm that will allow them to stuff all of Windows XP/2003 into the BIOS chip. Then they will really have a lock on the PC industry.

Re:I think this is outstanding. (1)

bored_SuSE_user (701483) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128734)

It's more likely that it will boot from the BIOS chip, thus forcing the user to use a windows operating system or patch the BIOS (see above)

Hail Teh Borg Gates! (-1, Offtopic)

yangotang (676179) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128677)

All your BIOS are belong to us!!!

Re:Hail Teh Borg Gates! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128721)

i hope you aren't as stupid as your joke is lame.

They will have to try really hard... (1)

Da Fokka (94074) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128681)

Most desktop end-users won't care but there are a lot of companies that simply won't accept this... Maybe they will be able to pull it off for some hardware but larger will still require hardware with a BIOS capable of running a real OS. And if there's demand, there will be supply.

Could you explain? (4, Insightful)

FreeLinux (555387) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128772)

Could you explain to me exactly who the lot of companies are? It is my belief that corporations as a whole will either not care at all or will regard this as a very good and important feature that will allow their operating system of choice(Windows) to operate more reliably and securely thanks to DRM and Trusted Computing blah blah blah

Most corporations will welcome this with open arms.

Remove the chip (2, Interesting)

RedHat_Linux_Man (692702) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128682)

Remove the chip and get a new one if you want dual booting or linux. There has to be a hack to overwrite the BIOS mem. I am no chip expert by far, but is it really possible for them to entirely by hardware mechanisms to make it windows only?

If Apple does this, it is good (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128683)

Somehow, when Apple has a far more monopolitistic marriage of the software and hardware of one company, it is considered good. But if Microsoft does it, it is bad. I think it has something to do with Gates' dorky glasses. Something superficial, anyway.

There's be hell to pay if M$ forced you to buy M$ hardware in order to run its software. But Apple can do it, but why not, their cases look so cool.

Re:If Apple does this, it is good (1)

dirvish (574948) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128719)

Who said it is good? The proprietary nature of the Apple system has limited the growth of MacOS. Of course, it has made the continue sales of Apple hardware possible...

Re:If Apple does this, it is good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128720)

1) Apple is not a monopoly

2) MS ain't making the hardware.

Re:If Apple does this, it is good (1, Funny)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128741)

Well Apple hasn't really got a monopoly. You'd have more of a monopoly if you had Baltic and Mediterranean Avenues.

Plus of course, MS is exceptionally bad at writing good software. It's buggy, it's not secure, the user interface is godawful. Apple sometimes has problems with this, and it's gotten worse since Steve came back, but they at least have a better reputation in this respect.

And MS is considerably more evil than Apple apparently.

Re:If Apple does this, it is good (1)

DigiShaman (671371) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128775)

Your an idiot! Apple started out this way from the get go when intentional control over it's own hardware and software. M$ on the other hand wasn't to control a platform that is SUPPOSED to be open to the entire industry. But nooo, looks like M$ want's complete control of EVERYTHING that's PC. Pretty soon, there won't be such as thing as an MS free PC if they have their way about it.

Microsoft invented the PC (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128793)

"But nooo, looks like M$ want's complete control of EVERYTHING that's PC"

Microsoft and IBM together invented the PC. If anyone should complain, it should be IBM only.

"Pretty soon, there won't be such as thing as an MS free PC if they have their way about it."

That is the way it was from the beginning.

Re:If Apple does this, it is good (1)

xwinter (632755) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128788)

The difference here is that Apple did not exert any of their non-existent monopolistic pressure to get a company they don't own to lock hardware MS doesn't make to one piece that MS does own: Windows. When Microsoft makes EVERYTHING in the box like Apple does (please don't nitpick, I know they outsource some stuff, ie. video) then they can do whatever they want.

Re:If Apple does this, it is good (1)

aurum42 (712010) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128799)

You, sir, are an ignoramus. Perhaps you are unaware of the fact that anyone with more than 2 neurons to knock around in their skulls can install linux or netbsd or may other free OSes of their choice on Apple hardware. Additionally, OpenFirmware, which is the "BIOS" equivalent (although it has been more advanced since day one of its existence), is an open specification, based on a Forth like interpreter. Sun firmware conforms to the open firmware specification as well. Perhaps reading this [openfirmware.org] may lead to some enlightenment, although the possibility of that ever occurring in your case seems remote.

three words, open, firmware & idiot. (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128811)

wonder why they call it "open"

maybe cause it's "monopolitistic"

you should really douche before you talk.

Here we go (1, Interesting)

TerryAtWork (598364) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128687)

Bill and the big boys are taking back our boxes and the Internet they let slip away from them.

They'll tell us they are doing it for our own good and their motto will be 'The Internet is too important for amateurs'

Re:Here we go (1)

Cali Thalen (627449) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128818)


<BLOCKQUOTE>'The Internet is too important for amateurs'</BLOCKQUOTE>

Umm...well YEAH it is. Too good for us to allow Billy to take it over too.

*insert AOL wisecrack here*

Whew! (1)

Richard Bannister (464181) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128693)

Should help Mac sales somewhat! :)

Re:Whew! (0, Troll)

ozric99 (162412) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128738)

Should help Mac sales somewhat! :)

Yeah, because Mac hardware is well known for being able to run countless operating systems.. no wait ;)

Re:Whew! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128758)

One friend with a Mac running Linux, another OpenBSD

Not mine (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128695)

if it is a M$FT BIOS i wont buy it...

I have a solution.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128698)

...make sure the motherboard you buy does not have a phoenix bios installed.

Holy cow this is bad news (1)

GeneralTao (21677) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128699)


Kinda of a by-the-way little news item for something which could potentially be so devastating? What will happen to Linux's ease of install? Will the topic du jour a few years from now be "Boycott PCs with this BIOS, only buy hardware with this BIOS" ?

I'm worried.

Re:Holy cow this is bad news (1)

bored_SuSE_user (701483) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128762)

Possibly something like that. I don't know, really, but I doubt microsoft will be able to force us to run windows. Numberous people run dual boot and will simply avoid a windows-only BIOS, I think. Trouble is, I don't expect the retailers will make it clear whether it has been asymalated my microsoft or not.

Alternative (5, Insightful)

shawkin (165588) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128701)

Say hello to Linux on PPC. Or, for that matter, some BSD flavor on PPC. Speaking of BSD, there's always the Mac OSX option.

Honestly... (2, Insightful)

silversurf (34707) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128702)

First, this is different from Apple?

Second, it will take less than a week for someone to figure out how to access the new BIOS and make linux bootable

Third, there will be plenty of chipset/mb makers who won't do it and you will see "linux" bioses or switchable bios chipsets depending on what the user wants. Linux has enough of a movement that chipmakers and bios makers probably won't ignore them.

Re:Honestly... (4, Insightful)

truenoir (604083) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128731)

Apple uses Open Firmware, the same as Sun, possibly IBM, and others. You can easily boot Linux on a Mac if you want.

Apple and OpenFirmware (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128796)

Just that Apple current machines use Open Firmware, which is standard IEEE 1275-1994. It boots anything... as already happens with other OSes beyond MacOSX.

JUST in the sake of fairness... (5, Informative)

JayBlalock (635935) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128703)

I feel compelled to point out that there's nothing in the article SAYING the bios would prevent other OSes from being installed. Nor, from the description, there is no reason it would have to happen, unless it was deliberately implemented.

MicroSoft is undoubtedly up to no good with this, but we don't need to go Chicken Little without a little more evidence...

Re:JUST in the sake of fairness... (2, Insightful)

Penguinshit (591885) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128752)

Those who forget history are doomed to repeat it...

Re:JUST in the sake of fairness... (4, Interesting)

rossz (67331) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128763)

With any other company I would hold off before passing judgement. However, Microsoft's long history of abuses makes it only natural to assume they WILL implement a windows-only BIOS. I'll take this one step further. Expect a future version of Windows to REQUIRE this BIOS, giving Microsoft an even tighter lock on the market.

[A]bort [R]etry [F]ail (2, Interesting)

the_webmaestro (570338) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128704)

Damn... Now we're going to be opened up to get viruses that attack BIOS!

boycott!!!! (1)

joeldg (518249) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128705)

boycott Phoenix Technologies if, they want to do that..
I can see it now, the latest blaster worm infect the bios from a ms office script..
crap crap crap..
keep em out.. boycott the bitches...

Re:boycott!!!! (1)

SkArcher (676201) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128759)

Does anyone seriously use anything other than an Award BIOS anyway? I must have built dozens of systems for the past few years and seen very few Pheonix BIOSes in that time - use quality parts, get quality workmanship I guess

Hmmmm.....MS BIOS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128710)

I've never actually had a BIOS crash before, might be interesting

This is illegal (1)

RighteousFunby (649763) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128711)

IANAL as always, but surely this is illegal?

This is illegal monopolistic activity, designed merely to maintain Microsoft's stranglehold on the desktop. If the courts weren't so busy with 12 year old girls and other assorted Kazaa users, they would get off their asses and sort this out.

acronyms (1)

ih8apple (607271) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128712)

From the article: "Phoenix said the DRM-enabled CME was not part of Microsoft's NGSCB, but that the technology was complementary. The CME would allow PC makers to embed digital rights management directly into the hardware, though they would have the option of allowing users to turn it off."

I think the authors (or editors) thought the first part of the paragraph sounded "cool" and "techie" or else why would they abbreviate something in one sentence and then write out the whole thing again in the next sentence...

Reminds me of... (1)

Enigma Deadsouls (700792) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128715)

PhoenixNet [slashdot.org] . Just all the more reason to stay away from Phoenix BIOS.

it doesn't really matter that much... (2, Insightful)

Heraklit (29346) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128717)

Since most modern operating systems (i.e. also Linux) use the BIOS nearly exclusively during bootup, I'm not so sure if this has much impact... you will have to be able to boot an OS anyway...

Also, Phoenix is only trying to do in the mainstream what has already been introduced for servers, namely better system diagnostics independent of the sanity state of the OS running.

Its a two-way street... (2, Insightful)

dbright (612573) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128722)

What's to keep the LinuxBIOS project (or something similar) from doing the same thing?

While we may not like it, it's just the logical progression.

Besides, if the BIOS "API's" are available to Windows, how long do you REALLY think it will take for open-source developers to reverse engineer it?

Re:Its a two-way street... (5, Insightful)

yanestra (526590) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128783)

Besides, if the BIOS "API's" are available to Windows, how long do you REALLY think it will take for open-source developers to reverse engineer it?
I beg your pardon, isn't it illegal to crack digitally protected media? -- And I'm sure, it will be digitally protected.

Years of lobby work finally pay off - in the USA like in Europe.

Re:Its a two-way street... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128807)

> Besides, if the BIOS "API's" are available to Windows, how long do you REALLY think it will take for open-source developers to reverse engineer it?

Depends how long the DMCA stays in effect. ;-)

Open source BIOS? (1)

Thinkit3 (671998) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128730)

The motherboard makers could sponsor it.

Is this bad? (1, Insightful)

Steve Cowan (525271) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128732)

Macs have had their BIOS integrated with the Mac OS since their inception. When Linux became available for Macs (i.e. LinuxPPC and mklinux), all we had to do was boot into Mac OS first then run the Linux Loader (forget what it was called though).

The BIOS OS integration on the Mac has always been a thing of beauty, and it makes sense that M$ would (after 20 years) start to catch up by now.

Re:Is this bad? (5, Informative)

ydnar (946) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128809)

Macs havent had a BIOS for years--not in the traditional sense anyway. They use Open Firmware, an architecturally-neutral BIOS replacement (originally?) developed by Sun. It's pretty nifty...

More info here [sun.com] .

Don't like it??? Then don't buy it!!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128733)

There is one easy solution. Don't buy Phoenix products. It's YOUR money.

Coincidence? (1)

incom (570967) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128736)

Phoenix Technologies is the same company that forced Phoenix(webbrowser) to change it's name to Mozilla Firebird.

WTF?! (1)

greymond (539980) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128749)

"Microsoft said integration should mean simpler and more reliable computers."

Can we say BULL SHIT

Well I guess it really will come down to Apple Systems and Music OR Microsoft Systems and Music....

Now to negotiate sale of my soul to the lesser of two evils...but which one is lesser?

Sun shows propritary hardware doomed to fail (1)

Saint Stephen (19450) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128750)

I'm a database guy, so I believe in logic.

It is logically inconsistent to believe Sun is doing poorly because the market has decided propetiary hardware/os combinations make bad financial sense, and that Microsoft will succeed in making hardware propritary to an OS. The free market will prevent this.

In other words, Microsoft is going to die on its own sword.

Maybe I'm lost (1)

phaetonic (621542) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128757)

But the paranoia involving all motherboards in the future to require Windows is obsurd because that is the sort of thing the justice department would not allow Microsoft/Motherboard manufactorers to do. Also, motherboards makers such as EPoX know there is lots of money to be made with overclockers. These are the same people who like to experiment with Linux, if not already using Linux. I don't think they would want to lose their market share.

Apple is Different (5, Insightful)

Balthisar (649688) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128765)

Apple has no BIOS on a chip anyware. Yes, there's Open Firmware, which is an open standard -- you're NOT locked into any type of control by Apple. You can run Linux on them. You have full control. THAT'S how it's different than Apple.

Oh, you mean the old "Apple ROMs"? That's been ancient history for at least four years, maybe more. There's no more Mac ToolBox on ROM -- it's all loaded into memory from the hard drive.

I am very, very concerned about this move. I run Linux on my Intel box with the current motherboard. Anyone got a good supply of fast PPC motherboards? I could do Linux that way, I guess....

unauthorised devices (2, Insightful)

jwhitener (198343) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128778)

"The BIOS would also allow better control of unauthorised devices connected to a system, Microsoft said. "

So, what is MS going to define as unauthorized? I don't fear them making the machine MS only, as I doubt that would fly with their recent monopoly troubles in court, but I do fear the definition of "unauthorized devices".

So, perhaps they mean, CD players that don't use DRM and can rip audio tracks to mp3? That would be a unauthorized device?

If so, thats bad. If microsoft, in any way, starts preventing me, on a hardware level, from deciding what I want to do with my files, I'll give up MS at home and work.

No way the box mfgs will go for this. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128779)

All of the box mfgs have been trying to get out from under the Microsoft monopoly. You think they're going to take getting the BIOS rammed down their throats too? I don't.

What about OS errors? (1)

aeinome (672135) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128780)

Recently my Windows installation got really messed up, and so I had to format my disks and reinstall it. If one does format disks, but something goes wrong (power outage?) what happens now?

How does a database affect a BIOS? (1)

rowanxmas (569908) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128782)

I thought that Phoenix was an open-source database? or am I thinking of the wrong kinda of bird of fire?

It says you can turn it off. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128785)

What Mickey wants, Mickey gets. Sometimes.
Just cuz the say "you must put on the
Windows button on all keyboards" doesn't mean
anybody uses it. Who the hell is going
to enable Mickey's DRM knowingly ???

BSOD without windows (1)

pixas (711468) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128789)

Great! Now we can have BSOD without even having to start Windows! Is't all in the bios baby!

What about those of us.. (1)

alphax45 (675119) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128790)

That build our own? Does this mean that the cost of a new motherboard will include the cost of windows, or will this only affect pre-built systems? I really hope manufactures (especially ASUS) still make motherboards with a regular BIOS.
Just 2c

No fear for other OSes (1)

failedlogic (627314) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128795)

I dont think that because of this news we wont in the future be limited to installing other OSes should the MS BIOS be implemented.

Consider than many users run Nix based servers on plain-vanilla ordinary desktop computers. Same goes for small & medium sized businesses.

Also, I dont think well ever see this locking out server motherboards. Medium and large businesses running rackmounts *want* to choose between installing an MS based OS and a Nix one. Pressure alone from a few big companies should muscle this tactic out of the picture.

Before these BIOSes even come to market, I will make sure to upgrade my computer.

DRM will be optional. (5, Informative)

zeekiorage (545864) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128805)

Right at the end of the article you will notice that the users will have an option to turn off the DRM...

Phoenix said the DRM-enabled CME was not part of Microsoft's NGSCB, but that the technology was complementary. The CME would allow PC makers to embed digital rights management directly into the hardware, though they would have the option of allowing users to turn it off.

In mother Russia... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128808)

We had a Beowulf cluster of BIOSes.

All your base are belong to us.

not to worry (1)

mOoZik (698544) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128810)

Even if it does happen, there will eventually be a market for non-MS tained BIOSes. The small guys will shine, everyone will embrace, Microsoft will crumble. At least that's what happens when I wake up in cold sweat.

Just wen you thought only the os was safe. (1, Funny)

eadint (156250) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128815)

now you can have a whole new plethora of viruses and worms brought to you by windows update.

evil (1)

potpie (706881) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128817)

both Microsoft and Phoenix are involved in plans to integrate digital rights management (DRM) technology at the operating system and hardware level.
so basically, these people want to control not only the market, but also the computers after they are bought.
Microsoft said integration should mean simpler and more reliable computers.
The stability of Linux on the SAME COMPUTERS THAT RUN WINDOWS has already proved the current system to be reliable. While Microsoft does indeed need to simplify and stabalize its operating systems, pulling direct links to the hardware is not the way to do it. Personally, I don't want Windows using my hardware directly. This is nothing more than a way to make computer makers more afraid not to include Windows on their machines, and there is no way anyone can cover that up.

Windows BIOS already exists-ish (1)

boffy_b (699458) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128820)

I recall working on some old(233MHz) Compaq Deskpros which had a BIOS which was clearly a very cut-down and modified version of Windows 3.1, but AFAIK they weren't limited to Windows installs, it was just used for th BIOS UI, it even had mouse support!
Does anybody else remember these?

Bill says (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128824)

All your BIOS are belong to us

Like usual i say... (1)

Yaa 101 (664725) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128825)

The only way to get around this M$ idiocy is to create Open source hardware...
There is a lot of propriarity code inside a PC nowadays, the original PC came off the shelf from many standard parts...
Then came rudiment chipsets, then southbridges and north bridges and this goes on and on...

But almost none of these systems are open, a company as M$ can make unilateral agreements and contracts to devide a market and keep other players out...
M$ has this history of using all the room they can take when it comes to unethical business, prooven over and over again...

Don't you all think it is time we started BIOS and various firmwarez projects on Sourceforge and Freshmeat?
Can we really not find people that are willing to put things like lithomasks, traces of motherboards and other IP in GPL alike licences?

If we wait too long then we can't run our home made code even on our own computers...

What do my fellow /.ers feel about this?

What about those of us.. (1)

alphax45 (675119) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128828)

that build our own PC's? I am assuimg this is most of the slashdot crowd. So what is going to happen, will this only affect pre-built machines, like from Dell and the like, or will all motherboards suddenly include Windows and a cost increase to pay for said copy of Windows? I really hope not... :( (and no I did NOT RTFA, so don't ask)

I thought the BIOS was to be replaced by EFI (1)

bustergonad (661997) | more than 10 years ago | (#7128832)

I thought that the plan was to introduce a new bootloader called the "extensible firmware interface". http://www.intel.com/technology/efi/index.htm?iid= sr+efi& I've been holding off a new pc purchase for a Petium 5, BTX form Factor, and hopefully EFI

all your BIOS are belong to us (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#7128835)

someone set up us the DRM
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