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Vendors claim that being denied access to the core of Vista seriously hampers their ability to protect users

McAfee Inc. has thrown down the gauntlet in its dispute with Microsoft's decision to lock down the core of their Vista operating system. The security software vendor has a full-page ad in today's Financial Times which berates Microsoft.

McAfee argues that Microsoft is making its upcoming Windows Vista operating system far more difficult to protect by locking non-Microsoft processes out of the kernel. Symantec had a similar beef with this move by Microsoft which was reported on recently by Windows IT Pro:

Symantec has also complained about a new security feature called Kernel PatchGuard that prevents software--malicious or otherwise--from altering the Windows kernel at runtime. In the past, security companies have been forced to patch the Windows kernel because so much malicious software does so as well. That process will not be possible in Windows Vista, which should make the system more secure. Symantec wants it removed.

Microsoft claims that this will keep Vista more secure by allowing only certified programs to access vital components of Windows, but McAfee openly mocks this in its advertisement by challenging:

"Microsoft is being completely unrealistic if, by locking security companies out of the kernel, it thinks hackers won't crack Vista's kernel. In fact, they already have."

A Microsoft representative dismissed this accusation, citing a close relationship with security partners during the development of Windows Vista. On the other side of the coin, vendor Trend Micro currently has a beta release of their anti-virus software available for Vista, which may have prompted other companies to suspect preferential treatment.

A scan of the article was unavailable at the time of this posting.



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After-Marketers on their own!
By JMecc on 10/4/2006 3:34:09 PM , Rating: 2
McAfee & Symantec are providing after-market *parts* for a computer much like many companies do for cars (engine air-fuel tweakers, spoilers, stereos, LCDs...). Do car companies conform to what the after market companies want? Do they even give them a nice interface to work with? Why would they want to do that anyway - manufacturers make a product the way they want and anyone making a gizmo for this product must figure out a way to integrate it. For McAfee & Symantec this means making programs that work on top of Windows (like what ALL OTHER software companies do) or buy the API rights from MS (which MS has FULL RIGHTS not to sell)!




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