Hasta la Vista, Technology

Mikey 12 comments
Hasta la Vista, Technology

When it comes to anti-trust legislation, no one has had as much experience at the receiving end more than Microsoft. With the impending release of Vista still more than a stones throw away, the new features built into the new OS have ruffled some feathers in high places, notably Adobe and Symantec.

I am using RC1 of Vista as I write this article, and having been trying the new features and applications for the past week and can clearly see why the aforementioned companies are worried.

For starters Microsoft's latest defence in the war against security, the aptly named Security Centre, will give Vista owners no reason to purchase a 3rd party application to protect from Malware, Worms and Trojans. Not to mention the Windows Firewall which is already part of XP with service pack 2 and will continue into Vista. Symantec are naturally worried.

Adobe's beef lies with the Microsoft's new XML Paper Spec (XPS) which is free for use and creation and will be competing with their Acrobat PDF creation software, which is not free. Microsoft has been forced to remove the 'save to pdf' and 'save to xps' functions from the forthcoming Office 2007 suite.

This particular removal I think is a real shame. Adobe's Acrobat product is one of the most bloated applications on the market and is long overdue for some competition. Any Sys Admin on the planet will tell you it has the worst upgrade path ever, with nag after nag after nag of bloated updates.

Microsoft certainly missed the boat with regards to portable documents. They are the leader in office software yet they have no portable document format to compete with Adobe. And now XPS has been removed from Office 2007 it appears they never will.

I can't end this article without mentioning Symantec, who are also well known for producing applications that use up resources like they are going out of fashion. I have a power horse of a system, an Athlon 3800+, 2gb DDR 400, Geforce 7900 GT, half a terabyte of disc space which I am always upgrading (sorry to whip out my e-penis), but when Norton is installed it takes a massive performance hit. Trust me, I have benchmarked before and post Norton.

Symantec's applications are nearly if not more bloated than Adobe's, and many people are shying away from them because there are alternatives that do not bring your system down to a snails pace, and they are totally free. I have always wondered why Symantec do not cry anti-trust to them.

The problem Microsoft face is that average Joe doesn't go looking for security applications, which is why it is important they build them into Vista. Symantec know this. Microsoft made the right decision to invest millions into securing Vista, so it seems just plain wrong that they are being forced to dumb it down.

This happens in the business world every day. Company A no longer needs apples from Company B because Company A now grow their own apple trees.

With these core features now absent, it will be interesting to see if Vista will also take a price hit. That will at least be one win for the consumer.

Update: Symantec are still bullying for Microsoft to make the Security Centre removable form Vista. From the article: "But Mr Paden insisted his complaints were not solely motivated by self interest. He said Microsoft should try to promote the development of new and better software by allowing other companies' products to work easily with Vista." Read more.
Not a Member!


Sunday 24th September 2006 | 11:44 PM

Kinda like asking Coke to put a few cans of Pepsi in every carton, huh? It's holding back a company from making a complete system, yet it's making sure, for us, the big compaynies can still have SOME competition. There's probably nothing stopping MS offering an antivirus program separately, is there?

Not a Member!


Sunday 24th September 2006 | 11:45 PM

Good article - do Adobe have the right patents to stop microsoft growing the portable tree?

Not a Member!


Monday 25th September 2006 | 12:04 AM

Microsoft could produce a separate AntiVirus program, but they know avarage guy wont be looking for one which is a problem. They are always hassled for thier lax security and have an opportunity to make things right. Although it does not address the problem of competition as you mentioned. It just seems wrong that money is more important than security. Or am I being naive?

Not a Member!

Green girl

Monday 25th September 2006 | 09:28 PM

Its funny in movies set in the future there is usually a single company that controls and distributes global products, yet by todays standards a monopoly that great would never be allowed to happen.

While I think competition is important there is nothing stopping symantec from producing a rival windows based operating system and deploying thier own security software within. But they know that wont ever happen so its off to the competition watchdogs they go.

In this case though micro$oft should be allowed to secure thier OS as best they can. If symantecs product is better and marketed people will buy it.

Not a Member!


Monday 25th September 2006 | 09:35 PM

Just imagine if symantec built thier own OS. "Thank you for installing Symantec XP. You have no resources left to do anything. Please upgrade."

That aside, Abrobloat installed another 53mb worth of patchs today, with 3 reboots in between. It froze druing the last patch installation and I had to restart. It also decided to take out my print spooler. This is precisely why there needs to be a better portable document format in the market. When you have the leading market share as Adobe has with Acrobat there is no incentive to keep your software up to the coding standards of software produced by companies with fierce competition between each other.

Not a Member!


Sunday 1st October 2006 | 09:51 PM

Just updated itunes. Now, my (somewhat old) system figures it will be fun to skip music and run slow.

Winamp it is, then!

Not a Member!


Friday 6th October 2006 | 11:21 AM

ill add another cheer for winamp down my way - i dont see whats wrong with software that DOESNT take over ownership of every possible compatible file in your entire system and the ones sitting beside yours as well? but maybe ive got a blind spot

but back to the main topic, i still dont get the part where symantec thinks that just because IT builds antivirus software that someone else CANT? do they get up mcaffee and pc-cillian and AVAST! ye lubbers.. (LOL) etc for doing even more exactly what they do themselves? not successfully, anyhow - hardly anyone i know can even afford nortons and the only reason i have it myself is work-related

go microsoft - you are going to anyhow, and we're all pretty much resigned to the fact that windows os rules the world... so we may as well all help to allow you to make it better, so that we dont end up one day switching to mac (in the erroneous hope that it may save us from all our troubles...)

Not a Member!


Friday 6th October 2006 | 09:31 PM

At last check Windows based machines account to around 95% globaly, compared to Apple and Linux at around 5% collectively, which is insignificant. That massive 95% marketshare is what scares Symantec, because anyone who upgrades to Vista will have no need for Norton utilities. I would bet anything that Symantec would not make any noise if OS10 on teh Mac had shipped with its own Antiviris and Firewall software. And that would prove Symantec are more interested in money than security. Not the other way around.

Not a Member!


Sunday 15th October 2006 | 09:18 PM

I work as a sys admin and I can tell you Microsofts new security has been applauded by pretty much everyone I know because it is clear thier intentions are to secure the OS and make life easier for people like me - and to the lamen of course. The patch guard feature will prevent everyone (including microsoft!) from changing the kernel at run-time. Symantec's objections are proof they are clearly more interested in revenue than they are in security. For with PatchGuard the need for Symantec's products comes into question. No matter what sort of spin they put on it you can be assurd its propaganda.

Not a Member!


Sunday 15th October 2006 | 09:28 PM

All good but you left out Google. Google have complained as well because the default search in Internet Explorer 7 will push people towards the MSN search service. One could argue that is not such a big deal as anyone will testify Google’s services are superior and people will simply come back. Heck I don’t know anyone who doesn't use Google. That aside Google does not want to take any chances.

But it begs the question: If Google ever develops their own browser (and they probably will one day) would Microsoft complain when the default search is Google? Given Google’s services are just as well known and widespread as Microsoft's (and this is all about numbers and exposure) one could argue Bill Gates might have a legitimate complaint to put forward.

Not a Member!

The Stude

Thursday 26th October 2006 | 04:17 AM

Well u can understand why microsoft are doing this, even though it will try and force out other companies...personally i think the problem will be solved if everyone goes to mac or linux...either way i havent been able to see any of this in action as when i tried to install the beta of vista it crashed during installation and buggered up my hard drive..in true windows style....
basically, microsoft want all of the market..greedy bastards.

Not a Member!

TJ Hooker

Friday 27th October 2006 | 05:44 PM

I used Vista RC2 without any dramas and even seriously considered using it until the final release. But driver support is limited and some software has issues. But the OS itself and IE7 were fine.

Add a comment

Login to Rusty Lime

Not registered? | Forgot your Password? Cancel Login