EU should better forcing vendors to sell PC's apart from OS

Story: EU could force Microsoft to bundle Firefox with WindowsTotal Replies: 9
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Jan 27, 2009
11:03 AM EDT
let the byer choose which Operating System he/she wants on her/his PC ...forcing vendors to sell PC's apart from OS should help i think ...also more work for the vendors installing OS's ... ;-P :

Jan 27, 2009
4:43 PM EDT
>also more work for the vendors installing OS's ... ;-P :

Not in the least. More work to offerf choices and much more work to deal with support for people who don't understand what it means to buy computer without OS.


Jan 27, 2009
5:28 PM EDT
I agree with dintrac. Especially because to a general end-user, an Operating System does not mean anything special. As long as a computer can be turned on and functional, that is all that matters. The general mentality is: I buy a TV or a DVD player and it works out of the box. No second thought is needed. No details need to be researched about what they need to get the TV or DVD player to work. It just works.

I would like to give the user more options but when you give them more options, the headaches start to increase. And that is why we cannot force the end user to choose. Stick with a default and just make them aware that they have options.

Jan 27, 2009
10:44 PM EDT
DVD players and TVs usually don't include content. Considering how much bundled cr@pware and obsolete drivers are included with Windows systems, I can see even many Windows users buying a system without an OS. Many tech support departments rely on their diagnostic applications, usually installed on a separate partition, to fix problems. They could easily be on a LiveCD. Many Intel server boards include a LiveCD with Red Hat that can be used to install BIOS updates, run diagnostics, or partition the hard drive and dump Windows server setup files onto it for faster installation.

Jan 27, 2009
11:12 PM EDT
I see both sides of this. On one hand, sure, having a PC basically act as an one-or-two use appliance such as a TV or DVD-player makes much sense. No headaches from all those options for the purchasing end-user, yes relative ease-of-support from the appliance's vendor or third party support, literal plug-and-play as it were to install the appliance, ... etcetera.

OTOH, as jansonxi writes, it's great to keep the bundled Winho$ cr@pware and malware away from the end-user too, and yet still have troubleshooting and support options readily available if needed. Besides the negative headache-inducing part of all those options which could certainly occur, I'd also like all the freedom-feeling positive options of upgrading my PC and maybe expanding my knowledge and efficiency with a PC-box that is more than just a one-dimensional appliance. We many creative types don't wish to just absorb the appliance's function (audiovisual entertainment), but actually multitask, and communicate and CREATE things! Not to mention lowering the acquisition costs and greatly reducing all those M$ legal license-restriction variabilities. 2c.


Jan 27, 2009
11:51 PM EDT
fluffer -

So far as I can tell, nothing is getting in the way of your freedom. I would bet that 90% of "civilian" -- ie, non-corporate, not-agency Linux boxes that were not built by their owners started out their lives as Windows boxes before they were liberated and allowed to be happy little crunch boxes.

Jan 28, 2009
8:51 AM EDT
what about 'forcing' ONE (or several) CD or DVD or even USB stick, along with the PC ,with 'multi-OS's' on it ...linux,windows,BSD,Solaris..... ?

Jan 28, 2009
9:27 AM EDT
@henke: While they're at it, force Microsoft to change their installer so it will recognise and leave alone other installed OSes. Last time I installed Windows (XP) it pretended no other OSes existed and claimed the entire hard drive. Has that changes with Vista? Is it actually possible now to say "Install in partition XYZ and leave the rest alone, including bootloader"?

Jan 28, 2009
1:28 PM EDT
Sander -

That would be a completely reasonable thing to require. I can't think of a single sensible argument against it.

Jan 28, 2009
4:35 PM EDT
It's not that you can't install Windows to a specific partition, you can, you can even partition the hard drive from the windows installer, at least you could last time I installed Windows to a actual hard drive, which admittedly was several years ago now, but it was XP. The problem is that Windows won't recognise any other boot loader as valid, and simply replaces it.

What Microsoft need to be forced to do is make their boot loader work the same as GRUB or LiLo.

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