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Microsoft Corporation (MSFT): Windows 10 May Disable Booting Other OSes

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) may be letting hardware manufacturers have the option of locking a certain option with Windows 10 that would essentially result in machines running the newest operating system from the software giant be unable to boot other alternative operating systems.

The tidbit comes from Ars Technica which reports that the new development concerning Windows 10 and other operating systems was revealed by Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) at its WinHEC hardware conference in Shenzhen, China. This is the same conference where the company’s Terry Myerson recently made headlines from after he announced that the company will upgrade Windows 7 and Windows 8 systems in China to Windows 10 regardless of genuine license or not (which the company later clarified to not be the case).

“The precise final specs are not available yet, so all this is somewhat subject to change, but right now, Microsoft says that the switch to allow Secure Boot to be turned off is now optional. Hardware can be Designed for Windows 10 and can offer no way to opt out of the Secure Boot lock down,” Ars Technica reports.

EUFI Secure Boot is a feature that stops malware from injecting itself at a low level during boot of a system. Though a desired feature for security, the system developed by Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) requires a cryptographic signature verification system for core boot components. Say for example another OS on the machine attempts to interfere which can be interpreted as the work of malware, the system won’t complete booting.

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In Windows 8, Secure Boot was optional therefore giving people the option to turn it off. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) also gave people who also compiled their own operating systems the option of including their very own signatures so that the cryptographic signature verification system would let the user proceed with booting even if Secure Boot was enabled.

However, with Windows 10, manufacturers may make Secure Boot mandatory while it is not clear whether the system to include user-defined signatures will be enabled, Ars Technica reports.

Jeffrey Ubben’s ValueAct Capital owned about 74.24 million Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) shares by the end of last year. ValueAct Capital was the institutional investor with the largest stake in the software giant by the end of 2014.

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