Spanish Linux Group Targets Microsoft in Complaint to EU

Paul Lilly

Open source group takes issue with Microsoft's controversial UEFI Secure Boot mechanism.

A Spanish open software group has filed a complaint against Microsoft with the European Union claiming that it's unnecessarily difficult to install Linux on Windows 8 hardware. Hispalinux, which is made up of 8,000 Linux users and developers living in Spain, issued a 14-page complaint regarding Microsoft's UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) Secure Boot technology, which the group calls an "obstruction mechanism."

UEFI Secure Boot improves security on machines intended to run Windows 8 by only booting operating systems with a digitally signed certificate. Initially, Linux users were up in arms over the technology prior to Windows 8 launching to the public, but complaints have mostly died down in recent months since there are workarounds available, including disabling the function in the BIOS.

Nevertheless, Hispalinux called the mechanism "a de facto technological jail for computer booting systems," further claiming that it makes Windows "less neutral than ever," Reuters reports .

The complaint comes fresh off a $731 million fine by the EU against Microsoft for inadvertently failing to comply with an agreement to provide users with a browser choice screen when firing up Windows for the first time.

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