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Thread: Controversial Microsoft plan heads for Longhorn

  1. #1
    AO French Antique News Whore
    Join Date
    Aug 2001

    Controversial Microsoft plan heads for Longhorn

    SAN FRANCISCO--Microsoft continues to tweak a controversial architecture for securing PCs but still plans to include the feature in Longhorn, the next release of Windows.
    The software maker stressed that Longhorn will work either with or without enabling the Next Generation Secure Computing Base (NGSCB), a technology designed to make PCs more secure by shifting sensitive data and operations into a separate part of the computer's operation. The software maker also continues an overhaul of the technology, which is already quite different from the code that was given out to developers at Microsoft's Professional Developer Conference last year.

    "We're making some modifications based on feedback from the industry," said Steve Heil, Windows technical evangelist, on Wednesday during a presentation at the Intel Developer Forum here.

    The revamped NGSCB will still allow companies that use it to separate things like keystrokes and user logins into a separate "compartment" within Windows, a move that should make such information harder for hackers to access. One of the big changes is that these compartments are based on Windows programming interfaces as compared with the custom code that was required in the version given out at the Professional Developer Conference.

    The technology will continue to let companies also run custom programs, or "scenarios," within a secure layer, although that appears to be less of a focus than when Microsoft first demonstrated the software last year. At the time there was concern that Microsoft was trying to lock in Windows customers and that it could lock users out of their data.

    Heil said potential customers were concerned that the security benefits of the earlier approach were outweighed by the pain involved in changing their internal applications.

    Microsoft has been trying to create these kinds of changes to Windows for more than half a decade, since developers and researchers at the company first outlined the ideas of a "Trusted Windows." The initiative took on the code name Palladium in 2002, and, Heil said, raised the ire of those who saw it as the equivalent of digital rights management on a chip.

    The latest changes have been in the works for a while, with the shift first evident at the WinHec conference this spring in Seattle.

    Despite the changes, Microsoft still plans for some version of the technology to be included in Longhorn, which is due for desktops and notebooks in 2006 and for servers in 2007.

    "We're on track to have...at least some of those features in the Longhorn release," Heil said
    Source : http://zdnet.com.com/2100-1104_2-5357726.html
    -Simon \"SDK\"

  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003

    I wonder if Longhorn is the ...

    project that ultimately sinks Microsoft and/or opens the door for other desktop OSes. As recently as Jan '03 MS said it would ship by the end of '04. It is now an '06 ship date and with a reduced feature set. Hummm, when the delivery date keeps getting further away AND the project is reduced in size, you gotta wonder what is going on.


  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    well if they pull it of it will definately not sink microsoft. In fact it will entrench them even further. Pirated software will be extremely difficult to work, all those MP3s downloaded from Kazaa etc... may not work and so on. Word documents could be ecnrypted within keys that only MS products have, so no more open office use etc... And it can support remote censorship.

    If (IF) it can be implement effectively and controls are put in place that ensure it is not abused then it could be a good way to go, (although there already systems that provide secure processing) so lets hope that its not just used as a way to ensure that the company profits increase but is actually used to create secure environments.
    Quis custodiet ipsos custodes

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    I agree, IF they pull it off it will only further their hold on the desktop. But it looks less likely that they will, at least completely. Longhorn was supposed to be a leap equal to or bigger than W2k/XP and yet it seems that many of the features (WinFS, for example) are being cut and now the timeline has now expanded to the longest ever for a MS desktop OS update - and we are still at least 18 months away so there is a lot of time left for the MS to say it will be an '07 release! I can see MS rolling out the various Longhorn parts, such as Indigo and Avalon, in pieces just to keep us thinking about it. This will seriously reduce the impact of Longhorn when it does eventually ship as well giving other OS vendors time to react. The next 3 years should be interesting.


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