Re: Why Microsoft is a Threat to Freedom

Michael Lorrey (
Thu, 13 Nov 1997 06:55:17 -0500

Harvey Newstrom wrote:
> Michael Lorrey wrote:
> > there's a route to take for personal choice....Or you could buy a Mac,
> > pay twice as much for the same performance you get in your PC. There's
> > another choice.
> Actually, price/performance ratios for Macs are the same or better than
> Intel PCs. Keep in mind that Macs come with built in ethernet, stereo
> sound, video capability, music synthesizers, voice recognition, and
> other items that aren't included in some PC prices.

Haven't been shopping for PCs lately huh?

> It's also hard to compare prices on the fastest Motorola or Alpha chips
> with Intel chips because Intel can't go that fast yet. If you need the
> fastest machines, the price of Intels become infinity (= not available).
> At 21:23 3-11-97 Lee Daniel Crocker <> wrote:
> > > Anbody that tries to make a M$ competing product will be aquired by MS or
> > > will be cut of with technical incompatibility tricks. That failing, the
> This has been my experience with Microsoft products. I am currently
> trying to build web pages that are standard HTML and compatible with
> every browser. I downloaded Microsoft Internet Explorer to my Macintosh
> and installed it. In the "README.TXT" file it explained that it changed
> the data format of my "Internet Config" control panel, which is used by
> all TCP/IP programs on my Mac. It them explained that other programs
> may not be compatible with the "newer" version. Basically, they
> reformatted another product's data files in such a way to make it
> MS-compatible only, and broke it for other products.

What do you mean "another products data files"? DO you mean that it made
IE the default browser for .html files for that computer? Duh, thats
merely a matter of file format association. It happens with any
application installation, they'll try to hog as many compatible file
formats for themselves and screw existing apps on the system that might
be more useful with those file formats. Microsoft is not alone in this,
its a standard industry practice. Corel did it when I installed Ventura
to .rtf and .doc files, Graphics COnverter Gold did it to ALL graphic
formats (as does HiJaak Graphics Suite).
> Another example just occurred at IBM where I work, also involving
> Microsoft and Web Pages. The Microsoft servers wouldn't feed graphics
> correctly to Netscape browsers. They claimed that the Netscape browser
> can't view the file, but that Internet Explorer can. Upon
> investigation, it turns out that the files are readable by Netscape, but
> that the Microsoft Server refuses to serve to Netscape clients. When
> one of our engineers tried to retaliate by making his webserver refuse
> to serve to Microsoft Internet Explorer, we discovered that the
> Microsoft browser will misrepresent itself to gain access. It first
> claims to be Microsoft Internet Explorer. If access is denied, it then
> claims to be Netscape Mozilla to gain access.

Here's an idea. Netscape could, GASP, do the same thing, impersonate an
Explorer browser to gain access to a MS webserver.... Gee why didn't I
think of that... I dunno, it must be because I don't work for

> There also are many examples of Microsoft products opening back doors on
> machines to allow their servers to gain access, or for their anti-piracy
> software to check for stolen products on your machine. Some of these I
> have discovered will open listening sockets on the network, even when
> networking appears to be disabled and all access permissions are denied.
> This latter example occurred with a wordprocessor program on a
> "non-networked" machine that was causing network problems for other
> machines. There was no way to open a document file without the machine
> turning on the network and communicating data about the local machine to
> other Microsoft products on the network.

I'd like to see more about this. Any system administrator would find
this a useful tool, and this data must be how many of the network
oversight applications operate. A good way to make sure your coders and
data entry weenies are working and not playing solitaire or sending each
other joke email....I'm sure my boss would like to have that capability
over me... he he...

> As a Network Security consultant, I recommend that my clients do not use
> products that deliberately sabatage other products, lie to security
> filters to gain access to other machines, or open back doors to the
> network that are neither documented or part of the product's normal
> function.
> --
> Harvey Newstrom (

As a network consultant, I recommend that others in the field find out
more about how PCs work in background operations to expand their
horizons past their Mac blindered knowledge...

			Michael Lorrey
------------------------------------------------------------	Inventor of the Lorrey Drive
MikeySoft: Graphic Design/Animation/Publishing/Engineering
How many fnords did you see before breakfast today?