Can We Trust Microsoft?

by Susan Linton - Jul. 20, 2011Comments (8)

microsoftTuxradar has asked another intriguing question this week: Is it time to start trusting Microsoft? This was spurred by the news that Microsoft has contributed a lot of code to Linux 3.0. They've been trying to get their hypervisor drivers into the kernel for quite a while, but faced various challenges of their own making.

Hardly anyone trusts Microsoft. After years of dirty back room deals and threats to keep Linux off store-bought computers, accusing the Linux community of being communists, calling Linux a cancer, and even undercutting its own bottom-line to knock Linux off netbooks, no one is ready to jump on the Microsoft bandwagon. Even after they tried to kiss and make up to Open Source, it was an obviously transparent move to better their position on interoperability.

Nope, hardly anyone in Linux or Open Source can honestly say they trust Microsoft any further than they could throw their lavish corporate headquarters. Some of the answers to Tuxradar's question reflect that opinion.

The very first reply says, "No Way! Remember, pigs still don't fly." Although another replied, "I am always slightly irritated by how nice the MS people are... They are always eloquent, friendly and happy to use company money to sponsor the beers etc."

Not as sexy but succinct, MFraser said, "Under no circumstances should we start trusting them, they are still trying to use their patent portfolio to extract money from companies making Android phones." And nEJC added, "A few good deeds doesn't show that company mentality has changed."

But they weren't all negative. Vredfreak answered, "They can be trusted.... Sort of." This was before Thameslink reminded readers of the fable of The Scorpion and the Frog.

Then you had those deep thinkers adding to the mix. spangwich said, "Microsoft's ideology is diametrically opposed to that embodied in the Free Software movement. One is about owning, controlling and profiteering from doing so, and the other is about sharing, collaborating and (using the word carefully) 'democratising'." Another along these lines said, "The Enemy of my Enemy..." in reference to competition with Apple.

One of the more humorous replies said, "trust microsoft? wharfff wharfff wharfff! I needed a good laugh today!" Another wondered if it was April 1 already or if Tuxradar had been hacked. One other said, "**** 'em." But I think Huw summed it up nicely for me when he said, "Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha!"

Or perhaps it was Anonymous Duncan who said it best with, "NO No No No No NOOOO!"

Mark Hinkle uses OStatic to support Open Source, ask and answer questions and stay informed. What about you?


Really?? Is that your artcle?

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It seems that microsoft wants linux to work better for them in the realm of interoperability and no considering the opposite. If microsoft can have other software work better with their stuff, but not vice verse, then there's a selfish win for microsoft.

This is what it appears to be to me.

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Didn't mean to post twice. Connection hiccup.

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Microsoft's contribution to the Linux kernel is nothing but proof of the irresistible power of open source development and freedom of software. It's like a car company that used to belittle environmentalists and now goes green to save money or profiteer from green publicity.

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If it was microsoft attracted to the power of opensource. Then perhaps they'd opensource some of their projects or start some new opensource projects as opposed to contributing to another operating system's source code.

It's not that microsoft hates the power of opensource, they hate the power of non-microsoft opensource. Microsoft should still not be trusted.

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Microsoft will be wanting something in return namely exclusive distribution rights to the Linux kernel. once they get that then you can bet your last penny( or dime depending on where you are) that linux will become proprietary software re engineered to cut out the open source element. remember folks Gates tried o claim that HE invented Linux.and never let it be forgotten that MSFT tried to say that they where immune from the terms of the GPL if they produced open source material under their name.( about the only time their legal department actually spoke sense told them that the GPL is actually a properly registered and legally binding document). So no sorry Microsoft you don't get my vote on his one

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I think we don't have to trust them. We have developers that are definitely better than microsoft's team..

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Of course we can trust Microsoft!

Everyone in the world can trust Microsoft! Yay!

Based on 30+ years experience of Microsoft products and services I can surely and reliably trust Microsoft to rip me off, to lie, cheat, and bully, to supply unfinished buggy code, lie about it, replace it with something slower and buggier, lie about it, update computers with crap, lie about it, change their lies and lie about it, and so on. And on.

If you ever doubted it, do a web search on: "Microsoft found guilty"

I started with EDTASM on a TRS-80 clone, which kinda worked, but filled up 90% of my RAM, leaving insufficient room for the code, so it would lock up and.... sound familiar?

Been helping friends and neighbours with their PCs for most of 30 years now, and the regular recurring problems just vanish once they switch away from MS.

Yes, people can change. I'll believe it when I see it - and the flying pigs, too.

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