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The EU calls for Microsoft to remove security features from Vista

It looks as though Microsoft and European regulators are butting heads once again. The European Union is asking Microsoft to remove new security features, including its improved built-in firewall, that have been added to Vista. Microsoft is urging the European to back off and has threatened to delay Vista’s European launch as a result of the latest calls for feature reductions. The new features, which make Vista a more stable and secure platform that its Windows XP predecessor, are seen as a stifling competition. "Less diversity and innovation would ultimately harm consumers through reduced choice and higher security risks," said Jonathon Todd, an EU competition spokesman.

Microsoft's Associate General Counsel, Erich Andersen, is trying to help the software giant walk the line balancing security with abiding by the law. "We are concerned that [regulators] might require the removal of some of the security features we've demonstrated. We want to launch Windows Vista in a fully lawful manner and we want to avoid regulatory decisions that could increase security risks for European consumers. One of principal concerns is that European concerns have access to the same new security features in Windows Vista as everyone else."

Making Windows more secure was a pivotal design point for Windows Vista. The Windows XP operating system has been the target of numerous attacks in the past five years and Microsoft saw fit to make its consumer operating system less of a target. Unfortunately for Microsoft, the European Union wants the company to leave those duties to 3rd party software developers.

Microsoft was fined $634 million USD in 2004 by the European Union for monopolistic practices and was fined another $357 million USD this past July for not complying with antitrust rulings.



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By afkrotch on 9/13/2006 8:04:39 AM , Rating: 3
I say an indefinite delay. Don't completely pull out. Just let them suffer for a while, until they allow M$ to sell Vista as is. Only allow WinXP Home EU version to be sold for the next 5 years or so and any Windows Server versions. No Vista, No CE, no anything but those two. I can almost guarantee that most businesses would start laying the smackdown on EU to allow M$ to do business.

I personally don't see any issues with M$ bundling every software they can into Windows. Is like that for OSX and Linux. Monopoly? What monopoly? Everyone has a choice in what they use. They can choose a different OS. They can choose a different browser. They can choose a different media player. They can choose a different AV software. The freedom of choice is there, it's just that most ppl in the world don't want to make that choice. If it's there, they'll use it. Does Dell get hammered by the EU for including a mouse, keyboard, and monitor with their computers?

The EU just wants to take money from a company that really hasn't done anything wrong and is bending over backwards to follow guidelines set forth. Hard to code software for Windows? WTF are you talking about? M$ already provided plenty of code so that other software developer's can more easily program for Windows. They didn't have a problem in the past, so exactly why do they have a problem now?


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