Friday, January 27, 2006

Microsoft Ups the Security Ante In 64-bit computing

MS has justannounced that it will "harden" Vista Against Kernel-mode malware by requiring all kernel mode drivers to be signed by MS. From a sound bite perspectivre, this sounds a really good thing., But fortunately for many of us, this is limited to 64-bit Windows not the 32-bit versions I'm running since the reality is goning to be bad news. As anyone who uses the latest hardware, or who uses niche hstfetgproducts, signed drivers are not always available. In some cases any there are NO drivers avaialbe for the latest systems - a problem I encounteered during the Windows 2000 and XP betas.

For me, this decision is a good one for my pocket book as it removes any current interest I have in 64-bit boxes in the short term. It also means MS has probably lost a launch customer for 64-bit Vista as I'm not prepared to go 64-bit without better driver support). Security is an important features, but in this case, just being able to install and run Vista seems a more important feature. As an example: I've just purchased a new (32-bit) Dell Laptop that simply does not run Vista - I've take Vista off, and gone back to XP. Given the low level of driver support thus far with Vista, I'm not prepared to buy into a platform which will come with even fewer drivers. I simply can not affort more xpensive but useless door-stops. I'd have been happier had MS also announced that better driver support full stop - something rather noticibly absent.

No comments: