Free Software Foundation Thinks It Can Stop SecureBoot
Written by Michael Larabel in GNU on 29 December 2012 at 01:03 AM EST. 30 Comments
The Free Software Foundation is now soliciting donations and signatures for a pledge in hopes that it can stop UEFI SecureBoot and other "restricted boot" systems from becoming too common.

There was a posting to the Free Software Foundation's web-site on Thursday that was an appeal to sign their pledge not to purchase or recommend any computer hardware that employs SecureBoot or any other restricted boot techniques. The pledge is titled "Stand up for your freedom to install free software" and so far have received over 40,000 signatures and the support of just 50 organizations.

Aside from asking for more signatures, they're also trying to get more individuals to donate at least $50 USD to the FSF in order to further their cause of stopping Secure Boot. They hope to stop Secure/Restricted Boot by building public support around their statement, fighting Microsoft's attempt to enforce Restricted Boot on ARM devices, working with manufacturers to ensure users can change the software running on their machine, working with computer vendors friendly towards GNU/Linux, and providing information about computers/components that are most compatible with free software. The Free Software Foundation also says they'll be releasing a new Secure Boot white-paper in January.

While it's a nice thought to get rid of SecureBoot, it's a very tough challenge going against Microsoft especially with their mandate for Windows 8 PC certification be that UEFI SecureBoot is utilized. If SecureBoot is to be unseated, it's more likely it will be as a result of government (namely the EU) intervention rather than the FSF.

For more information on this latest FSF effort, see their new posting.
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Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated benchmarking software. He can be followed via Twitter or contacted via MichaelLarabel.com.

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