Say That Again

by Joseph Weisenthal

Caveat Emptor: Microsoft Co-President Says Vista Won't Need Extra Security Software

from the that's-a-first dept

For a long time, Microsoft had a symbiotic relationship with the makers of anti-virus software. Microsoft would release a new version of Windows that had plenty of security flaws, creating a market for these third parties. But all that's started to change of late. When it got into the security space itself, its one-time partners started up the argument that the company was a monopolist. And as Vista's drawn near, many have accused the company of unfairly locking them out of the Vista Kernel, which they claim denies them the ability to make their software work. And now it seems Microsoft is ratcheting up the war of words again, as co-President Jim Allchin said to reporters that Vista wouldn't need anti-virus software, and that he'd let his young son surf the web without it. Obviously, this isn't the kind of thing that the third-party security vendors want Microsoft to say, but can we now expect Microsoft to not sell its own anti-virus software to Vista users, since it must be a waste of money?

Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1. identicon
    Johan, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 9:21am

    Just like defrag?

    So Windows doesn't need Anti-Virus software just like it didn't need Defrag software?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2. identicon
    Sanguine Dream, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 9:38am

    Doesn't need anti-viral software...?

    Thats just plain arrogance. I can hear the hackers and virus writers laughing now.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3. identicon
    Alex, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 9:58am

    I'd like it to be true, though

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4. identicon
    Ramowl, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 11:06am

    Doesn't need anti-viral software???

    Jim Allchin's statement is a VERY foolish one! There is not an operating system platform in existence that is not vuneralble to infection. Allchin has succeeded in displaying his ignorance to Microsoft's customers. This bodes ill for Vista users.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5. identicon
    Pixel Rider, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 11:10am

    After the first virus

    This could be fun..............wonder how many false advertising lawsuits try to pop up after the first virus hits all the people that assumed this to be true.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6. identicon
    Alex, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 11:15am

    Actually, I just read the article, and what he actually says is that his son is currently running vista with no antivirus software. Which sort of makes sense since as far as I'm aware, there isn't any available.

    This isn't exactly the same as saying you won't need antivirus software when vista is actually released.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7. identicon
    Saboteur, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 11:27am


    The focus on Windows XP was for collaboration, shared resources and managing data over different software products. This started by allowing holes for hackers. If Vista can eliminate 95% of the vulnerabilities that would save corporations an enormous amount of man hours.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8. identicon
    ITGuyfromHELL, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 11:28am

    From Microsoft's Vista Site

    "In addition to using these built-in Windows Vista features, you should help keep your computer healthy by using antivirus software such as Windows OneCare or an antivirus solution from one of Microsoft's partners. Whichever option you choose, remember to update your antivirus software regularly. These updates are generally available through a subscription from your antivirus vendor.

    Together, these tools can help you protect your PC from malicious software."

    Seems Jim Allchin's comments and what Microsoft advertises are two different things. I would think the programmers for Vista need to take Jim aside and let him in on how the REAL WORLD works...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9. identicon
    Jess, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 12:47pm


    i've been running vista for about two months almost and i've been using trend micro's pc-cillin beta with it and i haven't had a problem with it. kinda puts the lie that security software needs access to the kernel though doesn't it?

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10. identicon
    Windows_, Nov 10th, 2006 @ 3:43pm

    Windows DCMA oops, er..umm. Vista

    Someone should inform him that Vista comes with Windows Defender, which is Anti-Virus software.

    But... the MS feeb said it didn't need it!? Now, I'm confused maybe I just stick with XP or switch to Linux.

    Vista is a joke.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11. identicon
    the accountability dept, Nov 11th, 2006 @ 6:04am

    What's with the

    This is what was said (swiped from

    "I'll give you an example: My son, seven years old, runs Windows Vista, and, honestly, he doesn't have an antivirus system on his machine. His machine is locked down with parental controls, he can't download things unless it's to the places that I've said that he could do, and I'm feeling totally confident about that," he added. "That is quite a statement. I couldn't say that in Windows XP SP2."

    He's not saying Vista *wont* need AV software; all he's saying is that, with his lockdown scheme and the new vista security features, he is *comfortable* with his son not having av installed.

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12. identicon
    Ben Watson, Nov 12th, 2006 @ 1:25pm

    The quote is grossly misrepresented

    Please read this:

    for a discussion of what he actually he said. He never said or even implied that Vista wouldn't need anti-virus. All he said was that his son is so locked down and can't download or install anything, that he doesn't need anti-virus in that instance. It's a comment on PARENTAL CONTROLS, not the general case for anti-virus. Please read the full quote in context, not just the regurgitated drivel that passes for news elsewhere. I expected better from TechDirt.

    BTW, I have run XP for the last year without anti-virus without a single problem. Most of those programs caused way more problems than they solved. However, I know I'm the exceptional case: I don't do stupid things on the Internet to invite problems in the first place. Maybe someday, when somebody invents the next great virus, I'll regret it...

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

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