Whine, whine, whine, whine. That’s all I’m reading about this stupid controversy over Secure Boot.
I’m sure you know what a BIOS is, don’t you? When you’re computer boots up and you see “Hit F2 to Enter Setup” for about half a second – that “setup” is the BIOS. The BIOS is the basic input-output system. It’s the job of the bios to make everything work together to load the computer’s main OS (operating system). Lately, people have been pushing the use of UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface), which is poised to take the place of the BIOS (or work over it, I’m not real sure). One of the reasons people want to move to UEFI is for safety. UEFI will support, amongst other things, Secure Boot.
Secure Boot will use special keys to check the validity of firmware running on the system. This will help keep boot-time malware from hijacking the system; allowing the OS to boot successfully and securely. Windows 8 will require Secure Boot. Since Windows 8 will require Secure Boot to simply function, many people have begun complaining that Microsoft is trying to take over their PCs… WHAT!?! Are you kidding me?
Microsoft is not trying to take over your PC. They are trying to make it more secure. Window 8 will run on Tablet-like computers. Many people have already voiced concern over running full-fledged virus programs on their tablet. So, Secure Boot is one more way to make the tablet more secure without installing processor intensive, memory hogging, battery killing virus and malware scanning software. Who wouldn’t want that?
It turns out Linux people don’t want it. Why? Because they don’t understand anything. Here are the things Linux users (as a group) don’t seem to understand:
- You don’t have to buy a Dell, HP, IBM, etc. PC with Windows on it in order to have a computer. You like messing with Linux, build your own computer, lazy.
- Any hardware manufacturer who wants to sell products to Linux users is going to make darn sure Linux will run on their hardware. This includes creating firmware and software for their hardware or maybe even helping the open source community write patches for the many distributions of Linux.
- If your computer came with Windows pre-installed, then you paid Microsoft for that copy of Windows and they could care less what you’re doing with your computer.
- You’re not cool because you can dual-boot your computer into Linux or Windows. As a matter of fact, I can do the same thing, as can many, many, many other people around the globe. And if you like Linux so much, why do you setup your computer to dual-boot between the two? Why not just install Linux and have the entire hardrive (or two) for your Linux install? What do you even need Windows for? AND, are you telling me you really want to install Linux on your Windows 8 tablet? You’re going to buy a Windows 8 tablet and then ruin it by installing Linux? Just buy an Android tablet and root it.
- If you think Microsoft and all the computer manufacturers are working to make sure you only install Windows on your computer, then you’re paranoid.
As far as I can tell, these Linux users who are “concerned” about Secure Boot have nothing to worry about. Not only that, but they are big babies. Why would I say that?
Let’s look at Apple, a company who is known to lock down their systems and devices. A company who also locks their OS to their hardware. A company whose stance on “jailbreaking iPhones” is “don’t mess with my hardware.” How come I can’t install Linux on any old Mac? How come I can’t install a Mac OS on any old computer hardware? How come I have to have iOS on my iPad or iPhone? The answer to all of these questions is because Apple simply doesn’t allow it. Now, rumor has it Microsoft is going to lock down their systems so they only run Windows and people are outraged. Pretty much saying Apple can do whatever they want but Microsoft has to play by the Linux communities rules. That’s just stupid.
I’m sure the Linux brats will win, but I’m still going to call them babies. I’m more concerned about what this means for my computer labs. Will I still be able to clone my lab computers with Secure Boot checking firmware? How exactly will that work?