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Microsoft Businesses Apple

MS Requiring More Expensive Vista if Running Mac 545

ktwdallas writes "Mathew Ingram from Canada's Globe and Mail writes that Microsoft will require at least the $299 Business version of Vista or higher if installing on a Mac with virtualization. Running the cheaper Basic or Premium versions would be a violation of their user agreement. According to the article, Microsoft's reasoning is 'because of security issues with virtualization technology'. Sounds suspiciously like a 'Mac penalty' cost that Microsoft is trying to justify."
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MS Requiring More Expensive Vista if Running Mac

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  • Sick and tired (Score:0, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:38PM (#18735167)
    God, I just really hate microsoft. I'm so sick and tired of their shoddy products, obnoxious business tactics, and anti-customer attitude.
  • Dupe (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:38PM (#18735171)
    Old news, that is a requirement for running virtual on any machine not just Macs. Beside, Mac doesn't let you run OSX under virtualization anywhere!
  • by StandardCell ( 589682 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:40PM (#18735205)
    Any of your doubts as to why your software continues to be pirated, cracked, or otherwise made available to those who you think have no desire to pay is in part directly because of your continued arbitrary restrictions against otherwise legitimate users.
  • But why? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ceeam ( 39911 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:40PM (#18735207)
    What kind of Vista-exclusive software are you gonna run? (Especially under virtualization)
  • Not this again. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Rakishi ( 759894 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:42PM (#18735227)
    First of all this story is weeks if not months old, and a dupe to boot. Second of all this applies only if you run vista in/as a virtual machine not if you install on a mac that also has virtulization (for another OS say). In other words you can use boot camp to boot to your heart's content but can't run the cheaper Vista version in a VM under OS X just like everyone else in the fucking world who wants to run vista under a VM.

    I mean what the hell is up with Apple users and their inferiority/persecution complexes? This applies to all VMs and likely the number of non-mac users running windows under a VM (developers, linux users, etc.) is far larger than the number of Mac users who'd be doing it.
  • by vivaoporto ( 1064484 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:43PM (#18735235)
    So, it is not a Mac penalty, it is a VMWare penalty.
  • Re:Sick and tired (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Frosty Piss ( 770223 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:43PM (#18735239)

    I'm so sick and tired of their shoddy products, obnoxious business tactics, and anti-customer attitude.

    You know, you're not required to buy anything from Microsoft, if that's the way you feel. And if it bothers you that much, ignore them and think about something else.

  • So? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by StarKruzr ( 74642 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:43PM (#18735245) Journal
    Who are the consumer-level users who want virtualization going to be?

    Go ahead, you can take as much time as you want to think about it.
  • by Myria ( 562655 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:47PM (#18735275)
    And what, Apple lets you virtualize OS X?

    The anti-virtualization clause is likely unenforceable anyway *. However, most businesses that use Windows buy volume license agreements under contract, and the contract states that they will obey the EULA. That brings the EULA from the gray area into enforceability for them.

    * They know that their DRM system can be cracked easily by virtualization. They might be able to win under the DMCA because of this.

    I'm not a lawyer, I just read a lot.
  • Running Scared (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TheRealMindChild ( 743925 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:55PM (#18735359) Homepage Journal
    Microsoft is scared of virtualization. All of a sudden, there is no longer a requirement to have Microsoft software driving your real hardware. Especially with Parrallels able to run Windows Apps on your desktop without even looking at a Virtual Machine window, MS, I'm sure, can feel it all slipping away.
  • STOP THE PRESSES! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by 0xdeadbeef ( 28836 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @05:56PM (#18735371) Homepage Journal
    THIS JUST IN - APPLE requiring MORE EXPENSIVE PC if running MAC OS!
  • by rolfwind ( 528248 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:00PM (#18735397)
    Perhaps over-reported, but it's not baseless FUD against Microsoft. There is no real reason to require a more expensive license other than to prevent people from migrating to other platforms.

    If there was a stronger DOJ without the current administration's meddling, at least I would have hope that they would interfere and infer that it would in violation of their monopoly position or 90's agreement.

    (Have you never wondered why cell phone companies these days have to transfer your number if you move your service upon request? What if they charged you a higher price to transfer that number than your savings with the new company? Could stifle competition slightly, couldn't it?)
  • by cgenman ( 325138 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:00PM (#18735399) Homepage
    If you don't agree to the EULA, then don't use Windows. It's that simple.

    If you don't agree to the EULA, don't abide by it. Write letters, make noise, RETURN COPIES OF THE SOFTWARE TO THE STORE, and generally make a big, fat mess of things. Nothing will change unless you do.

    Companies need to know that they don't own the things that they've already sold. That once they've made their money, the usage of it is out of their hands. Putting terms and conditions into an introduction written on the inside of a box that everyone knows you can't return does not make for a legal contract or moral agreement.

    Make a mess of things, or things won't get better.
  • by nwbvt ( 768631 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:07PM (#18735445)
    Why would they penalize users for running on Macs anyways? If they are using Windows, they are using Microsoft's product. MS doesn't sell hardware, so how would it matter to them what Windows is running on?
  • by jesterzog ( 189797 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:11PM (#18735489) Homepage Journal

    This is old news, and not Mac-specific, but since it was re-posted anyway: What extra features does the $299 Business version offer to protect Windows against security issues with virtualization technology, and why aren't these features in the Basic and Premium versions?

    If it does offer something extra then I'm interested to know, but the linked article basically states that Microsoft has "restricted the use of Vista to versions that it assumes are likely to be run either by corporations or by sophisticated users."

    So in other words, assuming this is correct, they're openly using higher pricing as a security defence? (ie. "Let's make our product more secure by charging more money for it!") If so, then that's a new one and it seems kind of backwards.

  • Re:So? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Westley ( 99238 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:13PM (#18735495) Homepage
    Who says you have to be a consumer-level user to want to install a consumer-level version of Vista?

    It would be nice to be able to test whether an app works on all versions of Vista without having to have them all on physical boxes.
  • by cHALiTO ( 101461 ) <> on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:24PM (#18735585) Homepage
    I agree 100%. This 'License' business is way out of control. How can they tell you how to use a product in your home? all that "you didn't buy a copy, you bought a license to do only X" is bullshit. I bought a copy, a cd/dvd with a program on it. The copyright owner can sell me a 'license' to modify (extend) my rights to it regarding -distribution and reproduction- (after all that's what copyright should be all about) of such work, but in no way what I can do with it in the privacy of my own house. It's MY copy and I'll use it for whatever I fucking like. They can't 'license' something to me so I can do with it only what they allow, or at least they shouldn't. When and how did this ever change?

    sorry for the rant, I'm just sick to death about this 'licensing' nonsense, GPL, BSD and friends included.
  • Re:So? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by nanosquid ( 1074949 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:28PM (#18735611)
    Who are the consumer-level users who want virtualization going to be?

    A large number of Mac users.
  • by kimvette ( 919543 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:33PM (#18735633) Homepage Journal

    'because of security issues with virtualization technology'

    The only security issue I can see is from Microsoft's perspective: if Windows is merely a guest OS hosted on Mac OS X, Linux, BSD, or other, it is obviously not the users' primary operating system. Since it is not their primary operating system it is clear they are either not a fan of Microsoft, or even worse, are loyal to a competitor's product, be it free/OSS or proprietary. Since the days are numbered for earning revenue from that customer, what better way to maximize profits from that customer by requiring them to buy the products with the highest profit margin, despite the fact that the customers do not need the eye candy and other non-features the premium versions provide?

    It's all about short term gains. Rather than focusing on maintaining long-term growth (Microsoft has already grown as much as they can and they know it) Microsoft has turned from being one of the most customer-friendly companies around to being one of the most hostile; revoking your first sale doctrine rights (e.g., you cannot transfer a COMMODITY PRODUCT from an old PC to a new PC), spying on your computing activities (genuine advantage) and jacking up prices when the customer is receiving LESS value with the new OS (it hogs RAM and processor, boasts slower I/O AND is DRM-heavy). Also, they claim that F/OSS is bad because it does not come with a warranty or support. Well, have you ever read the Microsoft EULA? It comes with no support, and warranties and liabilities are EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMED.

    Where is the value in the backing of a big company again?

    My company has developed custom software solutions for customers, one of which is an interesting software registration (Windows activation-like - well, more like Adobe CS's, but about three years before Adobe implemented theirs) architecture. We back these works for higher with a warranty, e.g., if a genuine bug is found, we fix it and issue the fix at no charge. Feature requests, of course, are billable (time/materials, basically the cost of doing business) but we don't waive warranty.

    IMHO all software companies should back their products with support and bug fixes. Period. Microsoft doesn't; they downplay the impact of bugs (see yesterday's /. discussion on M$ office crashes NOT being security threats) or they take many, many months to fix really major security holes, while holes in DRM libraries get fixed and issued as Windows Updates releases in a DAY OR TWO, despite the negative impact on user experience is NIL.

    Again, where is the value of Windows over F/OSS solutions?

    Is it any shock they are requiring you to buy the high-end product to run as a guest OS? Of course not; Microsoft has nowhere to go but down, and they are fully aware of it so they are scramling to profiteer as much as they can before they collapse.
  • Re:Sick and tired (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Columcille ( 88542 ) * on Saturday April 14, 2007 @06:43PM (#18735717) Homepage
    Come now, this is silly paranoia. If you don't buy MS stuff anyway, then this has no effect on you. Just ignore it! But the article/summary are themselves silly. Microsoft has put particular requirements on licensing Vista for ANY kind of virtualization. It has nothing to do with Macs. If you virtualize Vista under Windows, you're still supposed to use higher editions. This is the first I've heard anyone claim some kind of conspiracy theory connecting this to a Mac.
  • by Tickletaint ( 1088359 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @07:23PM (#18736007) Journal
    You've never used Windows before, but for some reason you're concerned about being unable to run Windows in future? Why?

    I mean, speaking for myself, I've never felt the need or desire to run Windows in my life. So I'm having trouble understanding why someone else in my situation—someone who (ostensibly) doesn't care about Windows—would give two shits about XP becoming unavailable for purchase. What am I missing here?
  • by LaughingCoder ( 914424 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @07:27PM (#18736037)

    Have you tried buying a PC without Windows?
    Actually, I can't remember the last time I bought a PC *with* Windows. I buy parts and build, and have been doing that for going on 10 years now. But you are right about MS affecting me even though I don't buy their products. The parts I buy are very inexpensive thanks to the fact that Microsoft broke the hammerlock hardware vendors had on us. Thank you Microsoft!
  • Financial security (Score:3, Insightful)

    by myowntrueself ( 607117 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @07:57PM (#18736301)
    When MS talks about 'security' you have to ask 'Is this security in the computer systems meaning of the word or in the financial security sense of the word?'

    In this case its fairly clear that MS is mainly concerned with financial security.
  • Re:Sick and tired (Score:4, Insightful)

    by EggyToast ( 858951 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @08:14PM (#18736479) Homepage
    the problem is that WifeOS always comes bundled with the hardware, and the hardware doesn't always allow the software to work as the user wishes.
  • by VValdo ( 10446 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @08:26PM (#18736593)
    Microsoft penalizes competitors in mysterious ways. Take this recently released strategic email [] from Bill Gates:

    From: Bill Gates
    Sent: Sunday, January 24, 1999 8:41 AM
    Subject: ACPI extensions

    One thing I find myself wondering about is whether we shouldn't try and make the "ACPI" extensions somehow Windows

    It seems unfortunate if we do this work and get our partners to do the work and the result is that Linux works great without
    having to do the work. Maybe there is no way to avoid this problem but it does bother me.

    Maybe we could define the APIs so that they work well with NT and not the others even if they are open.

    Or maybe we could patent something related to this.
    This is clear evidence that they (at least) considered using patents and deliberately creating incompatibility to hurt competitors, even under the guise of being "open". Don't you think this virtualization pricing thing just might be less a concern about security (?) and more an attempt to do something similar via the EULA?

  • by Mistlefoot ( 636417 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @08:39PM (#18736661)
    I laughed at this. It is a bit insightful but it is certainly funny too.

    On another note the OS X licence agreement states:

    "2. Permitted License Uses and Restrictions.
    A. This License allows you to install and use one copy of the Apple Software on a single Apple-labeled computer at a time. "

    So you can't even legally run a normal OS X in virtualization on a PC unless Apple made it. This is a much harsher license if you ask me.

    source - m
  • Re:Sick and tired (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ArbitraryConstant ( 763964 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @08:49PM (#18736763) Homepage
    Microsoft: You need to pay more to run Vista under virtualization.
    Slashdot's response: God I hate Microsoft!

    Apple: You may never, under any circumstances, on any hardware, at any time, for any reason, ever run OS X under virtualization. Period.
    Slashdot's response: God I hate Microsoft!

    Microsoft isn't specifically targeting Mac users, they're targeting everyone that does virtualization, which is a pretty sizable group these days. I don't support the practice, but apparently I must point out that Apple is specifically targeting Mac users, and their terms are much more onerous than Microsoft's in this case.

    Besides, can't you run the entry level Vista Home with Boot Camp?
  • Re:But why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pauljlucas ( 529435 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @08:53PM (#18736791) Homepage Journal

    What kind of Vista-exclusive software are you gonna run? (Especially under virtualization)
    My own. As a developer who writes an application for both Mac OS X and Windows 2000/XP/Vista, it's great to be able to to development and testing on my single MacBook Pro laptop.
  • by that this is not und ( 1026860 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @08:54PM (#18736805)
    I think I still have a few 'rainbow' Apple stickers from the old Macintosh days. I could slap that on the side of any laptop I wanted to install OS X on.
  • Re:So? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @09:37PM (#18737197) Journal
    Err, no.

    There are many 3D/CG apps out there which come in one version alone; one does not simply shift a workflow overnight. I keep an old Win2k instance (under Virtual PC) around on my PowerMac in case I come across an old file I want to bring into a current project (it's easier to open VPC, fire up Rhinoceros, load the old .3dm file, then export it to .obj - than it would be to completely rebuild a an old proprietary-formatted NURBS-based high polycount-equivalent mesh from scratch). I realize you newbie types aren't familiar with such things, but trust me - it happens.

    Finally? If someone coughs up the cash to buy a Mac, then fuck you - he or she is a Mac User, and I for one am more than happy to help any of 'em transit to using OSX primarily when/if they're ready. Same with Linux; if they took the time to install it and learn to do things on it, I don't give a flying shit if they have Crossover, Win4Lin, Xen, Cedega, or old-school WINE running some (or even most) of the apps they still want and/or need... at least they're willing to make the effort, which is a damned sight better than the majority out there.

    In short - your bullshit elitist attitude is not welcome. You should've posted AC.


  • So? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Arker ( 91948 ) on Saturday April 14, 2007 @11:09PM (#18737861) Homepage
    I just don't get why people think "Apple does it" is an excuse. It's still absurd, and most likely unenforceable legally. The only real difference is that, so far, Apple doesn't seem likely to make any real attempt at enforcement, while MS has spent countless man-hours coding trojan horses into their own products to allow them to enforce such terms extra-legally.
  • by Arker ( 91948 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @12:07AM (#18738221) Homepage
    I'm sorry, you seem to be the one that is having trouble with reading comprehension. The restriction you mention is one on *distribution* - it's not a use restriction.
  • by arminw ( 717974 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @12:16AM (#18738275)
    ......when using Bootcamp you can legally use any version.......

    Is this only a EULA prohibition from MS or do they actually check whether their vaunted software is running under parallels or bootcamp and then not work correctly in the former? If it is only the EULA it can be and will be safely ignored by 99.99% of all users anyway so what's the big deal? After all WHO reads those things? MS and the other software makers will have people believe their EULA have the force of law. As long as I don't violate copyright law, there isn't too much all 100 million of MS's lawyers can do about it.
  • Exactly (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Rix ( 54095 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @01:47AM (#18738733)
    Apple tries to prevent people from using OS X on other hardware at any price. So even if this "Mac Tax" were real, Microsoft would still be treating people far better than Apple does.
  • Re:Sick and tired (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Megane ( 129182 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @02:22AM (#18738917) Homepage
    ...and that also works on a Mac.
  • Re:Sick and tired (Score:2, Insightful)

    by azenpunk ( 1080949 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @03:37AM (#18739271)
    Did you happen to miss the anti-trust trial, US Govt vs. Microsoft?

    What, you mean the part at the end where MS got off scott free, after they were supposed to endure all sorts of punishments?

  • Re:FUD (Score:3, Insightful)

    by makomk ( 752139 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @06:28AM (#18739929) Journal
    You know, it's funny how all these people are getting moderated up to +5 Insightful for saying this, yet not one of them seems to have provided a single scrap of evidence for it.
  • by itsdapead ( 734413 ) on Sunday April 15, 2007 @07:50AM (#18740307)

    Apple: You may never, under any circumstances, on any hardware, at any time, for any reason, ever run OS X under virtualization. Period.
    Slashdot's response: God I hate Microsoft!

    Has Apple said "never, ever" to virtualization, or is it just that negotiating with Apple over how to do it legally is not on Parallels/VMWare's "TO DO" list (while they're busy racing to grab the lucrative windows-on-Mac market)?

    Anway, if you don't like Apple's policy then it is incredibly easy to avoid buying a Mac because Apple do not have a 95%+ monopoly in the personal computer market - the only problem is which alternative you choose because Microsoft have a 95%+ monopoly in the PC market so even if you plump for Linux or BSD you'll find that lots of people take for granted that you can run Windows software.

    A lot of good software is Windows only because, what with Microsoft having a 95%+ monopoly in the PC market its quite hard for software houses to justify supporting other platforms.

    So, if a demand for virtualized Mac OSX does develop and Apple continue to block it then Apple will lose business. Microsoft, however, have a 95%+ monopoly in the PC market and can get away with all sorts of customer-hostile tricks - forbidding virtualization of the cheaper Vista versions doesn't impact on their income from the "Microsoft tax" on new computers and it doesn't really affect the big, corporate, volume licensing clients much. The people who it affects disproportionately are those using Macs and Linux who need to use a few Windows apps - not only do they (technically) have to fork out for a "full version" of Windows - already 2-3 times the retail price of the OEM version - they now have to buy the most expensive version too (or will do when XP is no longer easily available).

    P.S. did I mention that Microsoft have a 95%+ monopoly in the PC market - which is why slashdot (plus the authoriities in every country that has any sort of monopoly/antitrust legislation) apply different standards to Microsoft and Apple.

We all like praise, but a hike in our pay is the best kind of ways.