[ubuntu-uk] Implications Of Secure Boot Lockout

alan c aeclist at candt.waitrose.com
Wed Apr 8 15:06:53 UTC 2015

On 06/04/15 12:38, Nigel Verity wrote:
> Hi
> I have been reading recently that Microsoft are removing the requirement for hardware manufacturers to provide a secure boot "off" switch, in order to gain Windows 10 accreditation. If this comes to pass it will place Linux distros entirely at the mercy of Microsoft to sign their authentication keys, otherwise they will be shut out from installation on mainstream computers.
> Given that Microsoft look like making a lot less money out of the Windows OS itself over the coming years, it seems reasonable to assume that they will seek to maximise whatever revenue they can generate. This points towards eventually shutting out even "approved" Linux distributions. Presumably Apple can do exactly the same to prevent installation on Macs.
> If this comes to pass I have to admit to not having a clear view of where this will leave us. The only possibilities I can see are:
> 1) Being confined to installing on Chromebooks
> 2) Being forced to use more expensive specialist hardware (e.g hardware designed primarily to be a server)
> 3) A move to ARM-powered devices
> I stress I am not an expert on this so my outlook may be unduly pessimistic, but it would be interesting to get the views of anyone with more insight into the implications.
> Could something akin to Wubi be a way around the problem, albeit far from ideal?
> I suppose ultimately I am looking for some reassurance that Linux on the desktop is not being forced onto a road to nowhere.
> Nige   		

IIRC, China adopted Ubuntu as its 'official' OS a while ago, 
presumably on some sort of roll out over time. I expect they were not 
too keen on US based OS in future, if they ever were. India's Judicial 
system has been using Ubuntu for some time now. The French  Assembly 
has used Ubuntu for years now, and the 70,000 or so Gendarmerie PCs 
were reported as going to Ubuntu a year or more ago. I note that 
Ubuntu can be optionally downloaded as Kylin (?), Chinese version.
Ubuntu is sold on the high street(s) in India I believe in shops 
advertising a Ubuntu name.
The Ubuntu phone now exists; I suspect that Google Android is also 
affected by the suggestion that Google is a little too cosy with US 
agencies, more than some international users may be comfortable with.
Ubuntu phone has a European manufacturer, and, interestingly, a 
Chinese one also.

At some stage, people I know who have spent money on a Mac to escape 
Windows will realise Ubuntu is an interesting alternative approach.

This all looks like a useful future for Ubuntu....

alan cocks

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