back to article Lenovo denies claims it plotted with Microsoft to block Linux installs

Lenovo has denied locking its Signature Edition PCs exclusively to Windows 10 under orders from Microsoft. A Reddit thread this morning accuses Microsoft and Lenovo of conspiring to prevent the installation of non-Windows operating systems on the Chinese goliath's PCs at the firmware level. Linux fans vented on the message …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

    ...of course they are going to use a protection racket to prevent removal.

    Simple. Don't buy Lenovo.

    1. Andy Non Silver badge

      Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

      Exactly why I bought my primary high-spec SSD Linux computer directly from the manufacturer in China (via Amazon UK). Not only did it come without the "Microsoft tax" but it came with Ubuntu pre-installed, so I knew it was fully Linux compatible. I just dropped Linux Mint onto it and it has worked fine. If Lenovo don't want to sell their computers to Linux users, that's fine by me, there are plenty of other manufacturers out there.

      1. <a|a>=1

        Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

        Link please.

        1. Paul J Turner

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          @ <a|a>=1

          Search on eBay - "Hystou Fanless Core i5 Mini PC Desktop Computer" Loads of variations.

      2. Connor

        Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

        Of course, should anything go wrong you warranty isn't worth the paper it was printed on and your consumer rights are non-existent. You can of course write them a stern letter or write out an angry forum post. But that's about it. Even if they are willing to fix it, you'd have to send it back to China, and pay for that, and take the chance of something happening along the way, during which you won't have any legal cover whatsoever.

        No, the risks outweigh any benefit of buying direct from China.

        1. Andy Non Silver badge

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          @Connor, that is where the clout of Amazon is useful and reading the reviews of others who have bought the same kit; especially those who have had any problems and how they were handled. If you are interested: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Eggsnow-Fanless-Desktop-Computer-2-20Ghz/dp/B015W1NE4K/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8

          1. wikkity

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            A few years back I purchased around 20 various cheap Chinese android tablets on amazon and ebay for software testing, one turned up broken, a couple were just complete crap unfit for purpose and one stopped working after a month. Managed to get replacements and refunds via amazon and paypal. One also turned up 2 months late after I got a replacement, offered to send it back and they told me to keep it.

          2. Lotaresco

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            I have a couple of the Eggsnow systems (i5, i7) from Eggsnow. They are great Linux boxes. There are slightly better deals to be had from Hystou and the dual NIC offerings are really useful.

          3. CRConrad

            Tried your Amazon link:

            "Looking for something?

            We're sorry. The Web address you entered is not a functioning page on our site.

            Go to Amazon.co.uk's Home Page"

        2. Lotaresco

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          "Of course, should anything go wrong you warranty isn't worth the paper it was printed on and your consumer rights are non-existent."

          I buy systems direct from China using AliExpress rather than Amazon. I'm sorry but your views are just xenophobic nonsense. The vendors do everything they can to provide a decent service and would rather be out of pocket than short change a customer. I've had just one issue when a seller miscounted the number of interface cards required and supplied five instead of the six I had paid for. I mailed them and received an apology, the missing card and a credit note as compensation for the inconvenience.

          AliExpress (part of Alibaba but aimed at end user purchasers rather than resellers) provide a better-than-Amazon warranty of full refund in the event of the customer not being pleased with the quality of the goods purchased.

          BTW, not only are the systems well made and perfect for Linux but they are also innovative in their design. Multiple NICs, USFF, minimal electricity consumption - it's possible to mash-up all of these things, for example J1900 four core, four gigabit NIC systems with 8GB RAM and your choice of SSD with 10-15W power consumption and pocket money prices. These are great for roll-your-own security appliances.

    2. Alan Bourke

      Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

      "Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10...."

      They don't need to, most people want to use it anyway.

      1. nkuk

        Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

        Want to or have to? I don't think I have ever come across a person that has a desire to use Windows, most people just use it as that's whats installed on the PC they buy, or their employer provides them.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          want to or have to ?

          Actually, in my experience, want to. I distributed a lot of old pc's to users with a default mint install. 20% came back, asking for Windows. The reasons were mostly because they could not get web applications running. Such as : tv streaming, banking sites, government sites.

          Mind you : I'm pretty sure I could have had all of these working in little time. But for the average Joe this is pretty much rocket science. A similar case : my wife needed to do some things on <random government site>, and that required authentication via an e-id. She wanted to use the living room pc, a fully up to date iMac. Old, but capable of running El Capitan smoothly. Didn't work. She managed to get the card reader working, and could read out the certificates (she does make me proud). I checked, and had to install random plugins for any browser that is not IE.

          Rereading my post, and getting back to the point : they want to because they have to, but the "have to" is still too often due to crappy web applications. Which is probably fine... for Microsoft.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            > could not get web applications running. Such as : tv streaming, banking sites, government sites.

            I have not used a windows computer for 15 years, and I have none of those problems.

            My wife, a nurse, is happy using a Mac -- sometimes when I give her a Linux computer her comment is "Ohh did apple make a new browser..." and she get on which what she needs to do.

            She have however switched back to a Mac, as the work she does now requires her to use Microsoft Office (sigh) which is not available for Linux.

          2. Updraft102 Silver badge

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            Mint comes with Firefox as its bundled browser, and you said you were using the default Mint installation, so that is probably the browser in question here.

            I find the experience of using Firefox in Mint to be identical to using Firefox in Windows (it's my main and only browser in both OSes). Firefox on a fresh Mint installation has not been any more or less capable of doing anything than a freshly installed copy of Firefox on Windows (though using stock Australis Firefox is not something I can take for more than a few minutes at a time). When I copied my Windows Firefox profile folder to Linux , it was exactly like using it in Windows. I've not had anything fail to work on banking, government, or video streaming sites since I did that (and I didn't try to do any real work before that).

            Of course, if the people who wanted Windows were using Internet Explorer on their prior Windows installations, then there will be a difference when comparing it to Firefox. Is it possible the people that want Windows back for the reasons mentioned are really objecting to a change in browsers? It seems that whatever didn't work in out-of-the-box Linux Firefox probably would not have worked in out-of-the-box Windows Firefox either.

        2. cambsukguy

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          >Want to or have to? I don't think I have ever come across a person that has a desire to use Windows, most people just use it as that's whats installed on the PC they buy, or their employer provides them.

          You don't get out much do you?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            I desire to use Windows over Linux any day

            don't get me wrong, I think Linux has its place, and I do use it where that fits, but the thing I hate more than anything is that when I started on Linux, as soon as a) the forums found out that (god forbid) I liked Windows, b) that I was a noob (at the time), I was derided by the Linux community. Every story about Microsoft is treated like the public stocks, lets throw rotten fruit at MS - if you want to be treated like adults start acting like them and maybe you just might win more people over (you catch more flies with sugar than you do vinegar).

            There's a place for everything out there, places where MS wins, places where Linux wins - get over it.

            1. Adew1234

              Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

              Clearly you haven't wasted the morning installing MS Visio, a fully licenced copy yet wonderful MS bloatware wont let me activate the product with the licence instead providing the oh so helpfull message "We are sorry something went wrong and we cant do this for you right now. Please try again later.(0xC0020017).

              The activate via telephone box is greyed out and unavailable.

              Being the only option left I tried MS support callback after creating a MS account(obligatory) that I do not want has wasted yet another hour and all the two MS muppets that have called me have managed to achieve is to ask for the same info twice then in "transferring me to Visio" dropped the call after 5 mins of electronic beeps.

              Formerly Visio had a top quality support and was a better product to use .... that is until the MS empire got its talons on it.

              As yet MS have failed to follow up their dropped calls and the boss is still asking for some network diagrams.

          2. nkuk

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            No need to be rude. In my experience people put up with Windows rather than wanting to use it. Even Satya Nadella admits that people use Windows because they have to, he said this recently at a Windows 10 event:

            "We want to move from people needing Windows to choosing Windows and loving Windows. That's our goal"

            1. Peter2 Silver badge

              Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

              "It looks like the Microsoft Corporation has deployed its "superinfluencers" into this thread. Redmond must be regarding this débâcle as a high priority fuckup."

              It is a high priority fuckup! Somebody didn't read the (presumed) non disclosure thing in their agreement, which means Microsoft is now bricking it that anti trust people are going to be knocking on the door. I bet there are shredders running overtime.

              "We want to move from people needing Windows to choosing Windows and loving Windows. That's our goal"

              Pretty easy. Identify that you primarily have three seperate markets:-

              1) Business users on desktops.

              2) Home users on desktops.

              3) home users on mobile devices.

              Then recognise that WinX might be ok for groups 2 & 3 because they have fuck all alternatives, but most companies are on Win7 Pro and still buying machines pre-installed with it.

              Just go with the flow, offer the corporate world Win7 Pro as "Windows Classic for business" for $1 p/m per PC and then just LEAVE IT THE FUCK ALONE. No extra features, improvements or wheel reinvention. Just a consistent working "people ready" enviroment. Corporate IT (and I count SME's in this) do not want "improvements", but do want "STABILITY" i.e some guarentee and confidence that the workers who earn money for the company will be able to work when they come in each morning.

              1. Lotaresco

                Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

                "Pretty easy. Identify that you primarily have three seperate markets:-

                1) Business users on desktops. 2) Home users on desktops. 3) home users on mobile devices."

                I suspect you're not involved in business much.

                The markets don't look like you imagine. They look more like:

                Enterprise users deploying virtual Windows machines for desktops and remote working via laptops.

                Enterprise users with a Windows 7 desktop, used mostly as a fat client.

                Enterprise users with a thin client, mostly Linux.

                Enterprise users deploying mobile applications including Office 360 but no use of Windows OS (iOS and Android)

                Home users predominantly on laptops (Using whatever the hell came with the laptop)

                Home users consuming content via mobile devices (Windows not featured anywhere)

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Thumb Down

        Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

        "most people want to use [win-10-nic] anyway."

        not according to everything I've seen, including netmarketshare and statcounter. Their numbers show about 2:1 favoring 7 [and other versions] over 8 and 10, and very FEW people that I talk to actually _LIKE_ Win-10-nic. It's just getting shoved up our down our throats in one way or another. And, in THIS case, _LOCKED_ _IN_ on the computer itself by the manufacturer.

        Where's Linus on this?

        1. ebinrock

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          "Where's Linus on this?

          What can he do?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            This? It's quite remarkable how effective a well earned public rebuke from on-high can be. That little bird did more to fix nVidia, in very short order, than many, many years of coaxing and courting. Sometimes the bastards just need to be told.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Pirate

        Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

        I love WinX. I "want to use it anyway."

        I particularly love the built-in espionage "telemetry" features. That wonderful "telemetry" is probably even better than the removal of key features to necessitate app subscription, the newfangled do-what-you-like-to-your-PC-M$, thanks for letting me use it, do I put my elbows on the couch now, enforced bandwidth crushing patching, and the gimped UI.. all combined.

        Marvellous.

        I must buy more Lenovo.

        It looks like the Microsoft Corporation has deployed its "superinfluencers" into this thread. Redmond must be regarding this débâcle as a high priority fuckup.

        I wonder if there's any correlation between (conspicuous) "superinfluencer" activity and (occult) political corruption "lobbying" activity. Wouldn't be at all surprised if the former is a useful precursor to the latter. Like the strong smell of shit just before your slurry pit explodes. It'd be quite interesting to investigate. Shame our political lords and masters don't publish their bribery statistics.

        1. cambsukguy

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          I have to ask, do you really believe Microsoft give a flying fuck what is written on this rather parochial website?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Pirate

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            "I have to ask, do you really believe Microsoft give a flying fuck what is written on this rather parochial website?"

            I appreciate that your "question" is in fact rhetoric and not intended to be answered but, since it's also sarcasm and hypocrisy (mmmm... sarcastic hypocritical rhetoric - my favourite flavour), I'll answer it for you:

            Yes, "cambsukguy," of course they do. Why else would they employ MORMs and "superinfluencers"? Eh?

            So... in a spirit of reciprocity in kind, I have to ask... Doesn't the Microsoft Corporation Inc. maintain a PR interest somewhere around your way?

            Where exactly in "cambsuk" is it that you hang out?

            Are you meatware or a "research project"?

          2. hplasm Silver badge
            Windows

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            And do we give one about what Microsoft think?

          3. agatum

            Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

            I have to ask, do you really believe Microsoft give a flying fuck what is written on this rather parochial website?

            Yes, yes I really do. Any other questions?

          4. Jonathan Richards 1
            Headmaster

            Outrageous language!

            > do you really believe Microsoft give a flying fuck...

            For heaven's sake, we don't have to have disgusting language like that here! Microsoft gives a flying fuck. Microsoft is singular. Cripes.

        2. Rinse

          Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

          You could use Tron to disable all of that stuff.

          https://www.reddit.com/r/TronScript/

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Trollface

      Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

      Well, based on what happened LAST time around (when Lenovo bundled Superfish on windows machines):

      1. defensiveness [we just saw that]

      2. quietly speaking, erm, hmmm, "well, it looks like maybe we DID..."

      3. complete backpedal, public apology, un-do the damage, offer fixes to anyone who wants one, silently angry they got caught with pants down, etc.

      Waiting for '#3'.

      And where's Linus on this?

      [so yeah, KEEP UP THE PRESSURE, so they have to go through with "the process" and give us #3]

    4. John Smith 19 Gold badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

      Not he first time MS and Intel and storage media have done suspicious things.

      In "Startup," which charted the rise and fall of Go Corps pen based OS Jerry Kaplan recalls how they wanted to use an Intel proprietary storage format (a forerunner of micro SD cards). When they contacted Intel they were put through to MS and offered an extortionate deal for such.

    5. Tim Schutte

      Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

      No Lenovo here either. I will not be under the thumb of Micro$oft!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Microsoft will be paying vendors to deploy their malware os Windows 10....

        Or the thumb of Lenovo deciding It Knows Best.

        Having had to hack the BIOS to get a replacement WiFi card working on an ex-work 2nd hand laptop, allegedly because of some FCC reg (WTF ?? This is a UK model, 2009 or so vintage. We don't have such rules). That left a VERY bad taste in my mouth that I couldn't use any replacement mini-PCI card.

        So this story surprises me not one bit

    6. BobChip
      Linux

      Simple. Don't buy Lenovo

      Even simpler. Don't buy Microsoft. It has come to a sorry pass when even a "polite" organisation like Which has to slate Win 10.

      http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-37431343

      Glad I put on the Penguin Suit all these years ago.......

      1. Lotaresco
        Flame

        Re: Simple. Don't buy Lenovo

        "Even simpler. Don't buy Microsoft. It has come to a sorry pass when even a "polite" organisation like Which has to slate Win 10."

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-37431343

        That article contains this gem from Microsoft: "The Windows 10 upgrade is a choice"

        Yesterday I picked up a Win 10 laptop that I hadn't used for a couple of days. Flipped it open to be greeted with a black screen showing the word "Hi" and nothing else. Then followed warnings not to dare to turn it off (presumably because if I did it would be bricked) and then the joyous news that it was being updated and I couldn't prevent this. I wasn't given a choice, M$ forced an "upgrade".

        When it had finished it was left in a less than usable state with a jet black desktop, black task bar and a big chunk of the task bar taken up with "Cortana" <shudder>. When I checked the privacy settings and registry my decision to not run Cortana had been over-ridden and M$ had removed the option to disable Cortana. More registry hacking to stop the spyware running.

        It's pretty disgraceful that Microsoft think they know how you want your PC configured better than you do and they are so confident that they will force you to have an upgrade you didn't want installing features you don't want.

        I just wish that more companies would develop for Linux, there are a few applications I use that are only available for Windows, if I could get away from those Windows would be history.

  2. Lee D Silver badge

    Anyone know the number of the Monopolies Commission? Or that of Nellie at the EU will do, in a pinch.

    Seriously how are you able to do this legally, Microsoft?

    This is the whole reason why TPM and "Secure Boot" were bad ideas, especially when the key-signing is in Microsoft's hands.

    "We won't abuse it".

    Yeah. Sure.

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge

      They can already do it by setting UEFI secure boot to Windows only*, only this way they can go, "erm, um, it's a driver problem" instead of, "bang to rights, we've taken the bribe and the computer's not yours".

      * Well, they could, but the key's leaked now.

    2. Zakhar

      Sorry but EU Monopoly commission won't work.

      EU Judges are already on M$'s payroll, and have ruled that, see here:

      http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/09/09/sony_wins_case_over_preinstalled_windows_software/

      The judges repeated the exact same words the "monopolies" have been lobbying for for years. Basically: the user needs a software with the machine (sure thing!) and most of them being incapable of installing it (also true), thus M$ monopoly in on the end user best interest (I'm interpreting the rulings).

      EU judges are good, you only need to bribe them to get a ruling that applies to all Europe, how convenient! And of course there is no appeal. ;-)

      I'm more and more disgusted by M$ that is gradually "locking down" the PC to W$ only.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        "EU Judges are already on M$'s payroll, and have ruled that, see here:

        http://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/09/09/sony_wins_case_over_preinstalled_windows_software/"

        That is a somewhat different situation dealing with a refund of the cost of the licence when the installed Windows was blown away to install something better. Locking the thing in place is a different matter. Cases are determined on facts and the facts in this situation are very different.

        1. Zakhar
          Unhappy

          So basically you are saying the same thing as the judges: monopoly (by M$) is good!

          How much did they pay you?

          Let me explain the case:

          The guy wanted this particular kind of PC: this configuration of this brand. The only choice he had is buy the PC + O.S. or nothing at all.

          And the judges said that this is completely OK to sell PC + O.S. bundled and give no choice to buy only the PC (or only the O.S.). The OK from the judges states all the good reasons M$ has told them for years.

          Thus now, it makes jurisdiction. Every PC maker should do that: force you to buy the O.S. even if you don't want it. M$ wins, PC vendors win selling crap you don't want on top of hardware, and this is called a monopoly... but judges said it is OK.

          QED

          P.S.: I can agree with you on one point: the questions that were asked to the European judges are very badly phrased.

          1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

            "So basically you are saying the same thing as the judges: monopoly (by M$) is good!"

            No. I'm saying these are two completely different cases with different facts.

            I read the previous report. It turned on reimbursement of the cost of the licence for an unwanted piece of software which had been removed.

            This, should it come to court, turns on the locking of the device to prevent the removal of the unwanted software. In the report here there's no mention of wanting reimbursement for the licence and if that continues to be the case then the complaints are quite different.

            I doubt, however, that you'll want to prevent facts getting in the way of a good rant so please continue.

        2. TVU

          Lenovo denies claims it plotted with Microsoft to block Linux installs

          "That is a somewhat different situation dealing with a refund of the cost of the licence when the installed Windows was blown away to install something better. Locking the thing in place is a different matter. Cases are determined on facts and the facts in this situation are very different."

          I appreciate the technical aspects but the practical effect of this Lenovo/Intel/Windows issue to to effectively lock out and prevent the installation of non-Microsoft operating systems even if that's what the customer wants to do. It is operating as a de facto anticompetitive and anti-choice measure and therefore formal complaints to the EU Commissioner for Competition, Margrethe Vestager, are justified and making such a complaint should encourage the parties concerned to address this matter.

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Megaphone

        strangely, micro-shaft got 'popular' by making an OS people WANTED

        "I'm more and more disgusted by M$ that is gradually "locking down" the PC to W$ only."

        it's because they can no longer do what it was that made them "popular" in the first place: make an OS that people actually WANT. You know, so they don't have to use DEVIOUS MEANS and outright STRONGARM their customers into ACCEPTING it [without lubrication?] and NOT "just going elsewhere".

        tactics like this usually fail, but it takes a while. Back in the 'robber baron' days of >100 years ago, the 'tactic in question' was to strangle all competitors (by dominating the entire supply chain) so that they could NOT wedge their way into the market and provide AN ALTERNATIVE to dealing with the 'robber baron'. In this case, the 'robber baron' is leveraging computer makers, sort of like owning the gasoline stations AND the refineries AND the oil fields... (and thus fixing prices along the way in your own favor).

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: strangely, micro-shaft got 'popular' by making an OS people WANTED

          Maybe people don't want Windows as a PC operating system and maybe they do. A good indicator is something like Steam which has been offering "some" games that run on Linux for a few years now. Their annual hardware survey shows their users to be 95% windows and 0.95% Linux. The remaining 3+% is Mac OS.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Holmes

            Re: strangely, micro-shaft got 'popular' by making an OS people WANTED

            > Maybe people don't want Windows as a PC operating system and maybe they do. A good indicator is something like Steam which has been offering "some" games that run on Linux for a few years now. Their annual hardware survey shows their users to be 95% windows and 0.95% Linux. The remaining 3+% is Mac OS.

            Of what, precisely, do you suppose that's "a good indicator" AC?

            I'm genuinely puzzled.

            95% of Steam users prefer to have access to all the available Steam games than have access to some arbitrary subset of available Steam games? Bugger me! Whooda thunked?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: strangely, micro-shaft got 'popular' by making an OS people WANTED

              Yep people want a tool that does what they need. That's what a PC is, a tool to perform a task. If they aim to play games they probably want a Windows PC and if they are going to do development work they will want a Linux box for several reasons, not least it running the tools they need.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: strangely, micro-shaft got 'popular' by making an OS people TOLERATED

                "...they probably want a Windows PC..."

                Says who? An M$ Online Reputation Manager? LMAO

                Look up "non sequitur" and come back when you're not a moron.

                That most gamers may be willing to tolerate the malware that arrives preinstalled on their computers, perhaps in order to access the complete range of games, perhaps because they don't know they can, don't know how to, or can't be bothered to replace it with something better tells nothing of how they view that malware. On the other hand, the fact that a significant number of them do go out of their way to expunge that malware from their systems and freely and willingly hack off a chunk of their game libraries in the process speaks volumes.

  3. Clive Galway
    FAIL

    "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

    From the Reddit thread:

    "I got a reply from Lenovo on my Best Buy review about why the BIOS on my Yoga 900 ISK2 UltraBook has been set to stop people from using Linux."

    Specs for the Yoga 900 ISK2:

    http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/yoga/900-series/yoga-900-13/#tab-tech_specs

    It's a laptop with ONE DRIVE BAY.

    So what possible benefit would putting SSD RAID on a laptop with one drive bay bring?

    Pull the other one, it's got bells on.

    1. Roger Lipscombe

      Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

      > It's a laptop with ONE DRIVE BAY.

      Are you sure it has a drive BAY at all? My Acer ultrabook (granted, it's from 2013 or so) has a 128GB SSD in it. Except it doesn't; it has 2x 64GB SSDs in it. I assume they're soldered onto the motherboard somehow.

      With RAID enabled in the BIOS, Windows casually treats it as a single volume and you'd never know. To use Linux on it, you need to enable AHCI (which it *does* allow, unlike -- allegedly -- these Lenovo machines), at which point you need to monkey around with software RAID to get back to a single volume.

      1. Clive Galway

        Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

        From the product page:

        Storage: Up to 1 TB SSD

        And yeah, it may have eSATA ports, but it's an ULTRABOOK.

        Who buys an ultrabook and then lugs around an external RAID enclosure?

    2. Alan J. Wylie

      Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

      Matthew Garrett's take on this is that Intel's drivers give better power management than Microsoft's and forcing "RAID" mode stops the MS one from binding.

      http://mjg59.dreamwidth.org/44694.html

      1. Nick Kew Silver badge

        Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

        @ Alan J. Wylie: yes, I was kind-of wondering whether El Reg was channeling MJG.

        No idea why you get a downvote for posting the link. I would've posted it myself if you hadn't.

        1. Kurt Meyer

          Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

          @ Nick Kew

          "No idea why you get a downvote for posting the link. I would've posted it myself if you hadn't."

          Nick, if you stated that the Sun rose in the East every morning, there are posters here who would give you a downvote.

          1. Philip Lewis

            Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

            @ Kurt Meyer

            No true statement goes unpunished ... duly downvoted ;)

          2. Bill Gray

            Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

            @Kurt Meyer : "...if you stated that the Sun rose in the East every morning, there are posters here who would give you a downvote."

            Well, a statement like that needs experimental testing. Here goes :

            The Sun rises in the east every morning. (At least, on the Earth, between the Arctic and Antarctic circles. And sometimes elsewhere as well.)

            Let the downvotes commence!

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

              Listen guys, nobody mention the downvote.

              1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge
                Paris Hilton

                Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

                "Listen guys, nobody mention the downvote."

                I mentioned it once, but I think I got away with it!

                Also, who keeps track of the number of up/down votes and when can we trade them in?I wouldn't mind trading in upvotes for discounts on equipment - Drew - you reading this? :)

              2. Alistair Silver badge
                Coat

                Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

                Thats the first rule of the downvote.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "To improve system performance, Lenovo is ... adopting RAID on the SSDs..."

        Top link, if only the reg journos weren't always quite so driven click counts, such sensationalism may not be quite so common on these pages.

        Wound a few penguinistas up though ;)

  4. TRT Silver badge

    RAID...

    improves performance? Was there only one SSD in the box? I think so. So, WTF are they on about?

    1. BaronHK

      Re: RAID...

      Yes, only one SSD in the machine.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Boffin

      Re: RAID...

      According to a bloke down the Internet, the performance increase comes from caching in RAID0 mode which is not there in AHCI mode.

      The SSD's on-board controller does the caching in RAID0 mode, but the OS needs a driver which can find it without AHCI and talks RAID0 to it.

  5. gv

    Poor

    The quality of the ThinkPads seems to be on a downward curve and now this. I think the next purchase will definitely not be Lenovo.

    1. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: Poor

      Lenovo is also known to be one of two common laptop manufacturers (the other being HP) that won't boot if you install a different WLAN card. They were already on my "no" list; now they're upgraded to "hell no."

      1. Gerhard Mack

        Re: Poor

        "Lenovo is also known to be one of two common laptop manufacturers (the other being HP) that won't boot if you install a different WLAN card."

        I ran into that, hacked my BIOS and and added them to my no buy list. Since then I've had people bring me Lenovo laptops that refuse to accept third party batteries and we won't even get into how I feel about BIOS installed malware (superfish)

      2. oldcoder

        Re: Poor

        ...That would be DOWNGRADED to "hell no".

  6. Your alien overlord - fear me

    Install Virtualbox and run Linux inside that. Might not be the best option but it's better than just crying into your cornflakes and throwing a fit.

    1. werdsmith Silver badge

      Is there a virtualbox fork, like MariaBox or something, so that I don't have to contaminate with anything Oracle?

      1. asdf Silver badge

        >Is there a virtualbox fork, like MariaBox or something, so that I don't have to contaminate with anything Oracle?

        And yet you run Windows? Of course there plenty of other non Oracle VM solutions out there many of which are free (VM player, QEMU, Xen, Hyper V, etc). Open source QEMU and Xen I believe but like I say insisting on open source while running Windows is like insisting on only smoking organic tobacco.

    2. asdf Silver badge

      >Install Virtualbox and run Linux inside that. Might not be the best option

      No that would be avoiding buying Chinese branded junk hardware and totally avoiding this problem altogether.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Come on, what random *nix-only thing would hypothetically call for using a VM on top of Windows running natively? If you want to run Linux, it's typically the other way around. Last night I used W7 inside VBox to run a USB flash drive recovery/low-level format util and it worked because of decent USB pass-through support. How about the rest of the not-USB hardware that is already well-supported in Linux? Forget it, the VM already has.

      If you already decided how to use your hardware and if you simply want to run Linux-- maybe you really insist on having an open-source kernel in ring 0 or you strictly wish not to run MS things at all-- "not the best option" is improperly glorifying what is not an option at all.

      If it was mine, I would call this a crappy way to find out I basically bought the wrong hardware.

  7. John G Imrie
    Joke

    Missed a bit

    "does not intentionally block customers using other operating systems on its devices and is fully committed to providing Linux certifications and installation guidance on a wide range of products." Except for those products where we have an agreement with Microsoft

  8. BinkyTheMagicPaperclip Silver badge

    Not exactly new

    My ancient Asus P4PE (pentium 4 era) did the same - it has SATA ports that to use with one drive needs to run in one disk RAID mode. Windows has no problem with this. FreeBSD throws a fit and needs to be told to treat it as a normal disk, not a RAID array.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I just got...

    A Dell Precision T3620 workstation. Works flawlessly with Linux.

    Im not Dells biggest fan but theirbLinux support seems pretty tight. Right down to being able to perform BIOS updates from within Linux.

    My biggest bugbear is the frankly awful NVIDIA drivers. I know they're getting better in terms of performance but in terms of fixing things like image tearing, allowing higher refresh rates etc they truly stink.

    1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Pint

      Re: I just got...

      > Right down to being able to perform BIOS updates from within Linux.

      Interesting, noted. Things you learn from El Reg's commentards! ------------>

    2. Updraft102 Silver badge

      Re: I just got...

      Are AMD's any better for Linux? I wasn't able to evaluate it for myself, as AMD hasn't released a Linux driver for my laptop's ATI HD3650 for several years (my only ATI/AMD-equipped PC), so it's incompatible with any reasonably recent Linux release. I swapped the HD3650 for an Nvidia GT220M of about the same age (about 8 years old), and for the Nvidia, there's a Linux driver that was released ten months ago as I write this.

      I know it's old hardware, but it still works well enough to be useful, and it's nice to be able to get drivers for it. The Linux driver for my laptop does have one issue I've noted: If I turn PowerMizer (back) on, it locks up Xserver about 30 seconds after booting up. Once I set it to "Prefer maximum performance," it works well, though battery life would probably be reduced (I haven't tried it).

      The fault for that issue may not be with Nvidia, or at least not completely, as the same glitch has been noted with Intel and AMD GPUs as well, under varying circumstances.

      1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

        Re: I just got...

        Are AMD's any better for Linux?

        On a laptop - infinitely better as far as thermals, video and performance. I have 3 laptops in the household - all AMD. Battery life is quite often not stellar though. So shell out for a spare battery day one (you can still do it for most AMD models, their batteries are removable till this day, no ultrabook stupidities).

        As described elsewhere there are some really nasty shenanigans going on with integrated Intel chipsets so they are a no go area. Nvidia will melt on a laptop if you do not use the binary driver. The Nouveau open source driver thermal management is inexistent. Getting the binary driver to work, however is dependent on UEFI and firmware settings. There are machines where you simply cannot get it to work - it will not recognize any available displays.

        1. MrTuK

          Re: I just got...

          @ Voland's right hand - I have a 17" PC Specialist Laptop (i7 4720 and Nvidia 980m and 32GB DDR3, 500gb SSD and 1TB HD) and its great with Ubuntu 16.04 LTS with the Cinnamon desktop obviously !

          Its a lot nippier than when it had Win 10 on it !

          Its great playing War Thunder (WW2 Tanks & Aircraft sim/arcade battles) - actually quite impressive !

      2. Dave Bell

        Re: I just got...

        One of the interesting little things I came across is that the current nVidia driver, which I think is the ten-month-old one you mention (v352.63) is the same version number as a beta video driver for Win10 (and, of course, I have been told graphics problems are my own fault for using a beta driver).

        What I have noticed is that Windows drivers get fairly frequent upgrades with settings tweaks for specific games using DirectX, and I can't remember the last time there was any reference to OpenGL, which made that helpful advice even more stupid, because the person giving it knew I was using an OpenGL program on Linux.

        (I am running Linux Mint 17.3 and I cannot rule out there being a later driver version used by Mint 18.)

        With Windows 10, I am told, nVidia lost its advantage on graphics, but that's down to the new DirectX version.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: I just got...

      Hell is no better than Crapnovo have one packed waiting to go back to our IT department.

      It was forced down my throat, the only leeway I got is to install Linux on it. I did.

      1. Optimus cannot be turned off - as a result the nvidia binary driver does not recognize the GPU. So no way to turn power management on or monitor thermals on the GPU properly.

      2. With noveau in use the damn thing melts. It blows up on thermals doing NOTHING video related - just copying data over the network. Hell in their infinite wisdom did not enable any of the i2c sensors on the GPU so they are not picked up by lm-sensors either.

      No thanks. The only laptops I buy are HPs, specifically consumer AMD models. Not Intel. Proper video, none of the RAID shenanigans and it just works with Debian out of the box. You usually have to run it for about half a year with the binary driver until radeon updates pick up the chipset. After it works stock and does not melt.

      1. GrumpyOldMan

        Re: I just got...

        I don't like giving negative reviews on anything. But have a W540 I bought 3 years ago. Not cheap. Only because it was the only laptop at the time that would take 32GB, and I do a lot of virtual workload stuff in VMW Workstation - nested ESXi labs and so on, and I'm also a photographer so I run Lightroom so that runs really nicely and got the Pantone screen calibrator installed on it. Got it with Windows 7 Pro - didn't want it infected with the abomination that is W8. As for W10...... lets not even go there.

        Its ok - still works ok - typing this on it, build quality is not on par with HP or Dell by some margin. However, the biggest issue for me was that they custom build - like Dell - but in China. I'd ordered a 2nd 1TB drive instead of a CD. When it eventually arrived after 2 months (really) of delays the caddy was loose and the 1TB drive not being seen or recognised. On inspection the caddy was too big for the drive, so the drive was loose and flapping about inside. I could remove the drive very easily by hand as it was not fixed in or retained at all. So according to the tracking info it went like that from the factory to Beijing - the width of China -> Dubai -> Ireland -> Mainland UK -> DHL -> me. And the box was badly damaged on one corner.

        I contacted Lenovo with photos and a video, who fobbed me off with some crap I can't remember - so I posted photos of it on their forum. The 'locking mechanism' was so flimsy it nearly broke just opening it. Which I didn't need to do anyway to get the drive out. I had to put a 1/2" block of foam in there to stop the drive moving around and bought a solid, 3rd party alluminium caddy from our AMZ friends across the pond with proper locking screws in it for £7 delivered. Works a treat.

        I won't buy Lenovo again. Not that impressed.

        As it goes - I run a Mint VM that runs faster than W7 and have no problem accessing any web sites. Govt or otherwise.

    4. Daggerchild Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: I just got...

      Nvidia are in my bad books even on the Windows side at the moment.

      I updated my graphics drivers recently, and found the driver updating software updated itself, then *refused* to update my driver unless I created an account on the Nvidia website with a verified email address.

      And then I discovered the new drivers are now broken for what I use them for... thanks Nvidia.

    5. KalaDude

      Re: I just got...

      I have a GeForce GTX 770 in an older AMD desktop (Phenom II X4 955 Processor × 4). I use X.Org X server Nouveau display driver (instead of Nvidia's) to run my 3 monitors quite nicely. HD videos run great. I don't play games so I can't speak to it's performance in that arena.

      1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

        Re: I just got...

        I have a GeForce GTX 770 in an older AMD desktop

        That combination will also work, but it is extinct today. You get Nvidia _ONLY_ in Intel nowdays and _ONLY_ with Optimus tech bundled if it is a mainline vendor because Intel forces the issue on that one for them to get a discount. That is definitely in the Your Mileage May Vary zone.

        IMHO the old GTX 770 will probably run a bit hotter with nouveau compared to nvidia + Powermizer set to the dynamic frequency setting. It will however work and it will not melt. The difference compared to a modern laptop from a mainline vendor with nvidia GPUs is that they _WILL_ melt unless you have the dynamic frequency on. In fact they will melt with either nvidia or noveau unless this is enabled. The guilty party is the Intel Ultrabook clusterf*** (sorry spec) which specifies geometry which makes proper discrete GPU active cooling (as needed by the chipset at full blast) impossible. While a discrete GPU laptop in theory is not compliant anyway, they are usually top of the line models in a line-up where the lower ones are ultrabook compliant (and thus eligible for volume discount on Intel chipsets). As a result, they inherit the deliberately crippled thermal design.

        So you have to thermal manage via frequency throttle which nouveau does no have. You get that only with the binary driver and only if it works correctly and has magic incantations in xorg.conf

  10. Julian 8

    Crucial implies it is a standard M.2 SSD

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      My read is that this is due to the chipset support by the Linux driver (XHCI vs. AHCI) which I have been expecting with all the newer Intel chipsets. Not just Linux as I wander the world of non-Microsoft OS's.

  11. Matt Black

    ASUS Guilty Too

    Recent purchase of 'Republic of Gamers' ASUS high spec PC suffered 'RAID only, no AHCI' in the BIOS. It went back. I would like support for Linux from vendors, but in the absence of that I do expect the option to boot the machine in a 'standard' mode not encumbered by M$

  12. sisk Silver badge

    Frankly I'm inclined to believe that the guy at Best Buy was speaking out of his ass. I catch at least one Best Buy sales person doing that every time I go in there (which is rare these days since they seem to be targeting the less-than-technically-adept even more than they used to). Frankly I find it hard to believe Microsoft would go to those sorts of lengths to attack a rival that has < 2% desktop/laptop market share. It would be a stupid waste of resources that could be better used bribi...er, persuading game designers to use DirectX so that everyone has to either run their games on XBox/Windows PCs or pay a licensing fee to Microsoft. That'd net them far more resources than going after the really non-existant dollars to be had in forcing consumers to keep the OS their computers came with.

    As for Lenovo, here's a thought. Make that RAID setting default, but GIVE YOUR CUSTOMERS THE OPTION TO DISABLE IT! Seriously, once they drop money on the machine, it's theirs. If they want to turn off your (admittedly good) feature in order to install an OS the machine didn't come with then let them. Hell, even void their warranty for doing so if you feel like you need to, but do not try to control what they do with their own machine.

    1. Voland's right hand Silver badge

      Concur

      Even if there is an agreement, it is hidden behind 7 NDAs and there is a no way in hell that a lowly sales drone in Worst Buy has seen it.

      I think the other hypothesis mentioned on this discussion - that the machines suck bricks or melt if they are not run this way is more plausible.

      As far as giving the customers an option to disable, that may not be an option, especially on a laptop if the laptop does not have the thermal design to run in the "melting chipset" normal mode. As far as the vendor is concerned running it this way should be prevented as it will result in a warranty claim.

      The ultimate guilty party is actually Intel - for designing something that does not work properly and for being a complete and utter *** as far as driver contributions to the linux kernel.

    2. MrDamage

      Then do some real world trolling

      > "Frankly I'm inclined to believe that the guy at Best Buy was speaking out of his ass. I catch at least one Best Buy sales person doing that every time I go in there."

      Do what I do with these fools. Dress up as a complete bogan/chav/redneck, go in an say you want to buy a computer to get online and game with, and note down all of the bullshit the spew out. Drag it out for as long as possible, before call them out very publicly on their lies.

      See how many times you can do this before you're banned from the store.

      I find its a good was to entertain yourself when you have no choice but to accompany the missus to the mall.

      1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

        Re: Then do some real world trolling

        Me and a colleague used to do this at PC World in Moorgate when we had nothing better to do at lunchtime.

        We weren't total dicks about it, so whenever they got a new sales droid in the others would all stand around and watch the newbie getting 'initiated' :)

      2. Down not across Silver badge

        Re: Then do some real world trolling

        I find its a good was to entertain yourself when you have no choice but to accompany the missus to the mall.

        Admit it. You're hoping to get banned from the mall not just one store.

  13. CFWhitman

    Intentional? Probably not. Stupid? Quite Certainly.

    I don't think this is a very good idea. However, the laptops involved are not locked into Windows; they are merely locked into RAID mode.

    The agreement with Microsoft apparently is that for any machine to be marked "Signature Edition" it must be locked into whatever hardware modes give the highest performance. In this case, that means an SSD mode that doesn't have a driver for Linux (at least not yet).

    Whether there was any intention for this to lock out other systems besides Windows is hard to say. One thing that argues against that idea is that Lenovo regularly gets Red Hat certification for their machines (even laptops), and a lot of Linux users use Lenovo because of their reputation of working well. I wouldn't be surprised to see a Linux driver for the RAID mode being introduced soon.

    However, in my book removing configuration options, and thus flexibility, in order to make it so a machine will only operate in whatever mode is deemed to offer the highest performance is the height of stupidity, regardless of a "Signature Edition" label.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    UEFI and proprietary hardware drivers create nothing but lock out for non-Microsoft OSs.

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Came to post this exact same thing. I've been running into this very problem lately.

  15. anoco

    Fire with Fire

    How about a list of alternatives to the Lenovo/MS collusion?

    For example what would be good alternatives to the Yoga 900 ISK2 and so on?

    The easier it is for people to walk away from them, the more Lenovo will work on preventing that.

  16. JeffyPoooh Silver badge
    Pint

    Lenovo also 'blocks' Windows 10 from my several laptops...

    Several of my laptops, all Lenovo, cannot be "upgraded" from Windows 7 to Windows 10. I even tried one just to make sure, and - yes - too many I/O features didn't work.

    Obviously another suspiciously-similar conspiracy...

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      Re: Lenovo also 'blocks' Windows 10 from my several laptops...

      Naw, that's just Windows FAIL.

  17. W. Anderson

    Lenovo division of Microsoft

    Lenovo have even proven deceitful in sales persons attitude and statements to me recently in regard installing 'Redhat Enterprise Linux' on one of their Servers, for which the Free/Open Source Software (OS) was readily available on same servers under IBM Server.

    When I challenged this position through an IBM Partner/System Integrator, the company indicated allowing Linux install, but could not provide any credible Website link at that time, to confirm such OS support. Fellow small business consultants have indicated Lenovo being hostile and uncooperative to any Linux support on Lenovo/IBM x86 servers.

    Ever since Lenovo acquired both the PC business and then X86 Server business from IBM, who always allowed and even supported Linux installs on their ThinkPad Notebooks, desktops and Servers, Lenovo has been accused by numerous long time systems Integrators of having Microsoft's finger up their rear end, which is why the company has been so acquiescent to Redmond.

    When the Chinese government "mandated" Linux for all government computer systems procurement going forward in near future, Levono strongly protested and fought this decision in favour of and backed by Microsoft.

    Levovo is nothing more than a crass Microsoft lackey.

  18. ecofeco Silver badge

    Goodbye Lenovo

    It was nice while it lasted.

  19. BaronHK

    My reply to Lenovo's reply.

    It's a single SSD system. I looked at benchmarks with these things in AHCI and RAID mode and from what I've seen there isn't generally a significant performance improvement. Maybe Lenovo could furnish us with benchmarks?

    Linux needs "drivers".

    Yeah, for complex and pointless setup that applies to like three Lenovo laptops... Other Ultrabook makers let you put it in AHCI mode and that's that. No special drivers needed. Not Lenovo. They removed the AHCI option and then wrote new code to keep you from setting AHCI mode from EFI shell. Now they're saying they support Linux while saying "We don't support it." on these Ultrabooks. This response is such nonsense. I honestly expected better.

    Linux doesn't "need drivers". Lenovo needs to add AHCI mode back to the BIOS.

  20. Mikel

    Doublespeak

    > Speaking to The Register today, a Lenovo spokesperson claimed the Chinese giant "does not intentionally block customers using other operating systems on its devices and is fully committed to providing Linux certifications and installation guidance on a wide range of products."

    A wide range... but not specifically these offending ones.

    > "Unsupported models will rely on Linux operating system vendors releasing new kernel and drivers to support features such as RAID on SSD," he added. "Unfortunately, I cannot confirm our relationship to the person at Best Buy."

    Covered by the NDA. Can't say why we chose a controller that a Linux driver can't be made for. Ask the WinModem people why, if you can't figure it out on your own.

    It's the non-denial denial. A confirmation that the story is true, pursed in such a way as to lead one to believe that it isn't. I have seen this sort of verbal footwork done much better.

  21. RAMChYLD

    RAID Mode

    Are they just blocking Linux from running by setting the disk controller mode to RAID and forcing EFI and forcing CSM to disabled or is there some Secure Boot evilness involved as well? Because if it's RAID+GPT (CSM disabled, cannot be enabled) then it's actually possible to work around using kpartx on Ubuntu at least- you need to modprobe all the required RAID modules at boot and then run kpartx to activate the partitions, then once installed chroot into the hard disk and make it so the RAID modules are manually loaded at boot and get kpartx installed before rebooting. The problem here is that a lot of distros call it "fakeraid" and not bothering with it because "it does not bring any significant performance improvement" and "taxes the CPU" (their words, not mine. I actually noted that some RAID controllers like NVidia's NForce board have an ASIC to offload work so that the CPU is unaffected, but apparently they all say I'm wrong). So far I have gotten Ubuntu working on such RAID machines albeit with some elbow grease. And it's the reason I'm stuck with Ubuntu on my Linux machines. I use these RAID config on them (RAID-0 on one machine where speed is important and I don't care about the content of the storage, and RAID-5 on my Media Center PC). All the distros I've used to date doesn't support the config, only Ubuntu.

    If it's secure boot, yeah, this is why I oppose secure boot, and intel for creating it.

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: RAID Mode

      If you remove the 'word wrap' tick box you could make your text even harder to read. I sense you're not really trying hard enough :)

  22. This post has been deleted by its author

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What a whiny bunch of spoilt hypocritical Linux users

    I hate windows. Like many of you, I could rant all day about the flaws in memory managment, disk caching, privilege seperation etc.etc.

    i have been in professional unix admin/programming/consulting/networking/security etc. for 25 years, and am a strong supporter of open source.

    Having said that...seriously? A company changes its hardware, MS is the first to come along with drivers (yes, yes, I know - no doubt they were approached and involved from the start, but that's business), and it's somehow a conspiracy?

    like you guys, I've been continually frustrated when some new hardware is released, and the manufacturers only distribute windows/mac drivers. We then have to play catchup.

    It's not a conspiracy - it's not hardware or crypto configured lock-in. Is this new hardware configuration of theirs any better? Who knows? but it's not relevant.

    How would you like it if you'd agreed some decent hardware changes with some manufacturer, and the drivers to boot, and then suddenly they said "oh sorry, we can't launch this after all, as there are currently no windows drivers available.

    It sucks when hardware isn't supported by your OS, but that doesn't make it a scam.

    Finally, I'd like to mention that from a software point of view, Linux developers are just as guilty.

    Launching ALSA to compete with the defacto OSS standard. Insisting on HAL, then dropping it. systemd, and all sorts of unnecessary linuxisms that mean that when some new software comes out (often with desktops/window managers), half the stuff won't work on anything other than linux, because we "don't have drivers that are compatible with the changes"

    Sound familiar?

    Downvote away! It shows you care!

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

      Re: What a whiny bunch of spoilt hypocritical Linux users

      If Lenovo had kept some option in the BIOS to use an older, non-proprietary, access method no-one would be claiming foul, just BAU snafu; but they didn't.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: What a whiny bunch of spoilt hypocritical Linux users

      at least some of your points about the linux community shooting its own feet (particularly with respect to ALSA vs OSS and systemd vs desktop managers that won't work without it) are valid.

      so how about 'no vote' instead? out of fairness.

      still, win-10-nic deserves the bashing. and anything that LOOKS like it's locking out Linux deserves it, too. Lenovo did something very very naughty with 'superfish' late last year, and had to backpedal and admit their wrong to the entire world last February. I think they deserve the scrutiny on THIS issue, too.

    3. Dr Spork

      Re: What a whiny bunch of spoilt hypocritical MORMs

      Having said that...seriously? A company changes its hardware, MS is the first to come along with drivers (yes, yes, I know - no doubt they were approached and involved from the start, but that's business), and it's somehow a conspiracy?

      Interesting disingenuous rant AC. Well done. I have the feeling there's absolutely no truth in any of it.

      The particular FACTS of this specific case bear no resemblance to the fantasy you describe. Lenovo hasn't "changed its hardware." Lenovo has installed perfectly standard Wintel hardware, configured the Wintel intentional-clusterfuck-UEFI to initialise that hardware EXCLUSIVELY in its PROPRIETARY Wintel mode DISABLING its STANDARD AHCI mode, and REMOVED from the UEFI the capability for the PC's "owner" to re-configure that MALICIOUS UEFI setting. This is a DELIBERATE LOCKOUT however you look at it.

      As for the rest of your drivel, look again. The ones whining hypocrisy in this thread are the MS staffers and freelancers.

    4. RAMChYLD

      Re: What a whiny bunch of spoilt hypocritical Linux users

      > Launching ALSA to compete with the defacto OSS standard

      The way I remember it, the developers behind OSS wanted to start charging for the drivers for "prosumer" and "professional" cards. If they hadn't gotten greedy, maybe the split wouldn't have happened. I was already using Linux at that time (though I was just a greenhorn, being just a wide-eyed freshman at college having been just introduced to Red Hat Linux 6.1 by favorite lecturer).

  24. SisterClamp

    Absa-f***ing-lutely!

    Tried installing Linux on hubby's new Lenovo work laptop and move the detested Win10 to a virtual machine. No go. Bastards. Wish I'd read this article before hubby picked his machine.

  25. Daniel B.
    Big Brother

    Interesting

    The "Lenovo Product Expert" feedback has been altered to show the new "official" parroting, while hiding away the original "MS pays us to lock out Linux" line.

    1984 in action! Your complaint, doublethinked away!

  26. codejunky Silver badge
    Devil

    Hmm

    "This prevents GNU/Linux operating systems from being installed on new Lenovo machines, the users said, and "locks" them to the Windows 10 Home OS."

    I thought hell started after death. What did these poor souls do to deserve this?

    I hope it is just a slip up that is corrected. This wont do their reputation any favours.

  27. Digitall
    FAIL

    Buy, Bye Lenovo

    LENOVOTE from me for ANY of their devices.

    1. ebinrock

      Re: Buy, Bye Lenovo

      So far I do like their (almost) pure Android Moto phones, but if their software updates start putting things on it I don't want, I'll switch to a Nexus/Pixel phone (which in the future might also add extra junk).

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I have some IBM servers that totally refuses to let you turn off HW RAID.

    Yet I don't go around posting on Reddit about a great anti-Sun/Oracle (ZFS) Conspiracy.

  29. Dave Bell

    The best upgrade to Windows...

    It's not entirely wrong that the best upgrade to Windows is called Linux, but even companies which have supported Linux in the past are losing their enthusiasm. And it doesn't look like a coincidence when this happens at about the same time as the game engine they use is bought up by Microsoft.

    And then, whenever you hit problems, the response from all and sundry is RTFM!

    Unfortunately, nobody has actually written the manual. You get a mass of uncertain fragments on a Wiki somewhere.

    That's an American company

    If you want to see this stuff being done properly. linux support, documentation, and all, I commend to your attention Squad, the Mexican publishers of Kerbal Space Program. My personal network of acquaintances overlaps with software engineers in several companies, talented people, and most of them outside the USA.

    It's possible that a lot of the people at Microsoft and Lenovo can talk to computers.

    Perhaps they haven't noticed that we're not computers.

  30. ebinrock

    Don't buy branded computers!

    The best way to avoid these kinds of things is to just build your own system from the motherboard up. At least so far I haven't heard of individual motherboard, hard drive, or other manufacturers getting in the restriction game.

    1. anoco

      Re: Don't buy branded computers!

      Sorry mate, could you give me a link to some place selling non Lenovo motherboards so I can build my own 2-in-1?

  31. ebinrock

    Microsoft loves Linux, my foot!

    Microsoft loves Linux, all right, just not on the desktop!

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Terminator

    Hardware hack enables Linux support on Lenovo Yoga 900 ISK2, undermining Lenovo's statement

    "Basically, if you want to install Linux, you need a kernel with the required SSD driver."

    'A hardware hack has enabled AHCI support on the Lenovo Yoga 900 ISK2, undermining Lenovo and Microsoft's claims that Linux is "missing drivers".' ref

  33. BaronHK

    Update on Lenovo story.

    There are a few updates. A hardware hack. A possible Linux patch to kick the system into AHCI mode despite the BIOS. A letter of complaint to the FTC and Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan.

    https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comments/542c8t/hardware_hack_enables_linux_support_on_lenovo/

    https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comments/54gtpc/letter_to_the_federal_trade_commission_regarding/

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