Does Microsoft think they’ll get away with charging users for ‘protection’ against Windows flaws?

John C. Dvorak, writing for PC Magazine, asks, “Does Microsoft think it is going to get away with charging real money for any sort of add-on, service, or new product that protects clients against flaws in its own operating system? Does the existence of this not constitute an incredible conflict of interest? Why improve the base code when you can sell ‘protection’? Is Frank Nitti the new CEO?”

Dvorak’s article, “The Microsoft Protection Racket,” continues:

Why protect the users when you can fix the code? Therein lies the rub. Microsoft cannot fix the code—that’s the point. It apparently cannot be done. Microsoft talks about how when it releases Vista, there will be various versions such as Home, Small Business, Enterprise, and so on. Why doesn’t the company just bite the bullet and bring out various exploitable versions? Here are some suggestions:

Vista – Won’t Boot Edition… $29.95
Vista – Preloaded with Viruses and Spyware Edition… $39.95
Vista – Initially Clean but Use at Your Own Risk Edition… $49.95
Vista – Clean with Firewall and Weekly Protection Update Edition… $200

You get the idea. How about this for a concept: One Version that Works Edition.

Full article here.

Related MacDailyNews articles:
Mafiasoft? Microsoft to ‘offer’ new subscription security protection racket – October 07, 2005
Sleazy Microsoft sells out anti-spyware Windows users, downgrades Claria Gator to ‘ignore’ – July 07, 2005


  1. Few people remember Dvorak wrote a column for the beloved, belated MacUser magazine. Even fewer know that he has been serving as an Apple “mole” inside the PC world, spending years and years currying the favor of the uninformed masses. And now that he has their confidence, their trust and their attention, it’s time for the subterfuge to end and the sabotage and empire-collapsing to begin.

  2. Dvorak is so opinionated it is difficult to support him, even when playing against MS for a change.

    He has a great point though. Thankfully, I made the Switch years ago and only have to use a PC at work – where I don’t have to fix them like I did at home!

    MDN word: earth

  3. Microsoft needs to throw Vista in the trash and build a whole new OS. Base it on SCO UNIX (since they seem to be in bed there), put a familiar Window-like interface on it. Put in all the cool features that were originally supposed to be in Longhorn. Put in all the features they can steal from Leopard/Tiger/Panther. Forget entirely about backwards compatibility. Instead run WinXP/98/DOS apps in virtual machines (leveraging the technology they bought from Connectix).

    That would be a fearsome OS, and could probably ship faster than Vista.

  4. Welcome to Microsoft where our motto is “Steal from many, give credit to none” or “If it ain’t broke, we’ll fix it”. I take comfort in the fact that Microsoft’s position can only go down. Same stock price for 7 frigging years. Yeah, that ain’t so hot. They really don’t have any room for expansion in their main money-making segments, Windows and Office. XBox pretty much blows, Tablet PC’s haven’t worked as expected and IMHO, the media center PC could easily be replaced by a Mac Mini or iMac G5 and have greater programs to boot. I guess all they can do is expand into new markets like anti-spyware. How many movies have you seen where the ultimate power lies in having not only the poison, but also the antidote? Ingenious if you’re money-grubbing like Microshaft. Robbing the poor, to give to the rich. That’s the gist of it.

  5. “……Microsoft needs to throw Vista in the trash and build a whole new OS. Base it on SCO UNIX (since they seem to be in bed there),…..”

    Agreed … but then if they actually did “bite the bullet” and ship an OS based on UNIX … the backward-compatibility issue notwithstanding … they would lose a huge revenue stream that is .. “The Protection Racket” mentioned above !! ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”LOL” style=”border:0;” />

    I betcha Gates & Ballmer make more money selling the PeeCee Lemmings “protection” … than His Steveness makes on the ITMS !!

    (ya think ?)

    Well, maybe not that much… but its probably close !!

  6. Maybe the halo effect of the iPod is making it’s way to the PC experts.

    Does anyone know of a database program similar to MS Access for the Mac? I need something that will work on the PC side and is somewhat compatible to Access. I checked out Star Office 8 which has a Database module but it’s only for the PC not Mac.
    Any thoughts or suggestions? I don’t want to have to use Microsoft’s VPC and Access if I don’t have to.

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