ActiveX controls and method of software delivery is very good news
for MicroSoft. MicroSoft already claims that this method of software
down load is no different from ftping binaries. If you clink on
a link and accept a piece of software then the User alone is
responsible. It was your choice to download that software. You may
pursue to sue the author of the renegade software, but MS is not
responsible even though their OS is insecure and ActiveX is insecure.
This has serious repercussions on other software vendors to the
benefit of MicroSoft. MS OS with integrated IE will come with
MS Authenticode already preloaded. Other companies will have to
(possibly) pay fees to MS to have their Authenticode registered.
Lets explore the following scenario:
(a) you use the the Internet a lot and download software from
(b) you start to observe problems with your MS OS.
So you ring MS asking for advice to correct the problems.
The MS support guy very politely ask's you:
Q Sir/Madam have you been using the Internet?
Q Sir/Madam have you been downloading software?
Q Sir/Madam have you loaded software from any source other than MS?
MS: Sorry Sir/Madam you have voided your warrenty, we are not
responsible for consequences arising from running third party
Now we get Pavlovian response from the vast majority of the clueless
Win97 users. They will associate non-MS product with danger and in
the future restrict their visit to MS.
This is a win-win position for MS. They win because they ship their
Authenticode with their OS, so the User does not have fiddle setting
it up and locating other authenticodes. They win because others will
have to register and pay fees for Authenticode thus putting them at
a disadvantage in the same way as the pre-loaded OS/software situation.
They win because non-MS sites will become associated with danger.
Views expressed is that of the author's alone.
VLSI (DSP) Designer IMS: ZHUS
MOS Design, Texas Instruments Ltd vox: +44 (0)1604 66 3405
Northampton, UK NN4 7YL Speed Dial: +8 447 3405