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Re: The incident that caused me to stop dual booting and go to Linux

Verily I say unto thee, that Terry Porter spake thusly:

> What was your defining moment for switching to Linux ?

Well I used *nix long before I'd even heard of Windows. In fact I
managed to go through my entire education at primary (junior) school;
secondary (senior) school and University before businesses; governments
or educational institutions (or anyone else) had ever even heard of
Windows either. Even my eventual introduction to Windows was only
because of the untimely demise of my Amiga (later resurrected), and was
little more than a stopgap measure. Most people under the age of 40
probably think in terms of Windows, first and foremost, whenever they
think of computers, and consider *nix to be the "different" approach.
For me, it's the complete opposite.

Since then, there have been many "defining" moments that made me want to
never use Windows again (I wouldn't call it "switching" though, since
AFAIAC I never really switched /to/ Windows in the first place). At home
I was a Speccy user, and Amigan, and then a Linux user (and subsequently
a contributor of various sorts). The brief interlude, and my occasion
re-acquaintance, with Windows, has always been a matter of following
other people's expectations. E.g. my first Intel-compatible machine came
preinstalled with Windows - without option; my current laptop came
pre-installed with Windows - without option; hardware vendors only seem
to provide BIOS and other firmware flashing tools for Windows, etc. My
main beef with having Windows preinstalled, apart from the fact that
it's crap and I don't want it - but I have to pay for it without option,
is the fact that part of the money I paid for these machines goes to
benefit gangsters, i.e. Microsoft. I'd really; really like to avoid
that, if at all possible.

If there was any moment that first opened my eyes to how reprehensible
Microsoft and their "partners" really are, I suppose it might be this:

Nvidia Macrovision DVD-TV rules forced on consumers

DRIVERS FROM NVIDIA 41.09 and onwards include "stringent checks" to
comply with Macrovision requirements, the company has said.

That could mean if you have a TV encoder that does not support
Macrovision, you may well get an error message depending on what DVD
software player you are using, the company has said.

In a note to the latest drivers, Nvidia says: "The BT868 and Conexant
CX25870 TV encoders do not support Macrovision. If your graphics card is
equipped with one of these TV encoders, then it will not support DVD
playback with our 41.09 drivers and above."

But that has caused some consumers to react in alarm. One INQUIRER
reader claimed that meant users of equipment that doesn't conform to
these Macrovision standards are stuck with drivers beyond the 40.72 level.

He said: "Their [Nvidia] drivers automatically lock all DVD playback,
not just TV out, when a non-Macrovision approved tv encoder chip is
detected, meaning those that have video cards that contain BT868 and
Conexant CX25870 TV encoders".


At the time, I had a TnT2/Ultra card with a BT868 chip, and found myself
completely unable to play DVDs any more. Even rolling back to the old
driver didn't help, for some reason, since I'd also updated WMP which
had apparently altered the system state in some mysterious; clandestine
fashion to permanently forbid DVD playback, regardless of the driver
version. IIRC that particular version of WMP could (famously) "not be
uninstalled" either, so I was basically stuffed (or is that "stiffed"?).

I contacted the retailer (PC World); the OEM (Creative Labs); nVidia and
Microsoft to ask them what I should do, and their unanimous response was
"buy a new graphics card". I suggested that one of these companies
should buy it for me, since it was their error, and their sledgehammer
"solution" to that error, which had caused me this inconvenience in the
first place. Essentially I was being punished (both financially and in
terms of inconvenience) for /their/ mistake.

I never received a second reply.

In retrospect, I should have pursued the case under The Sale of Goods
Act, since these goods were no longer fit for purpose (the card was
advertised as being able to play DVD video content), but I didn't
bother. Instead I just rebooted into Linux (which naturally had no
difficulties playing DVDs), and forgot about the Windows partition ...
for a year or so. When I did eventually reboot into Windows, I had to do
a Wipe'N'Reinstall® to play DVDs again, and avoid updating both the
graphics driver and Windows Media Player. It was at that point I became
completely distrustful of Microsoft and other proprietary software
vendors, and decided to just completely disable the Windows Update
Service (not through the control panel, but through the services MMC)
and the so-called "Intelligent Background Transfer Service", since it
has been subsequently proved that Microsoft can re-enable Windows Update
remotely, then install updates by stealth, unless those measures are taken:


So I guess you could say that my "defining moment" was when I first
realised Microsoft, and the entire industry supporting them, were a
bunch of gangsters, with the Vole acting as a kind of Godfather to the
"PC Cosa Nostra". There have been many such moments, but the one above
is the earliest one I have a clear recollection of.


| "At the time, I thought C was the most elegant language and Java
|  the most practical one. That point of view lasted for maybe two
|  weeks after initial exposure to Lisp."   ~ Constantine Vetoshev

Fedora release 8 (Werewolf) on sky, running kernel
 03:00:03 up 4 days, 10:42,  4 users,  load average: 3.92, 3.98, 3.95

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