On Thursday 11 September 2014 05:04 PM, Nishit Dave wrote:
On 11 Sep 2014 12:56, "Pirate Praveen"
We have now sent a legal notice to HP on this via Prasanth Sugathan of
Software Freedom Law Center and it is covered by Economic times
Bravo for this initiative, all who are part of it!
A copy of the notice is available at
I see some issues with getting a refund and starting a
1. OEMs get an OEM license from Microsoft for installing Windows on to
consumer PCs - the terms may be negotiated, and pricing may be very low for
a leading OEM like HP (though not negligible) - would the OEM or Microsoft
be willing to make their pricing public?
Acer America has a refund policy and they mention the refund amount
2. Both the OEM and Microsoft can say that the OS is
an essential part of
the system, as the proprietary drivers of some components will not run on
any other OS, and alternative drivers may have unintended effects or
illegal uses (such as SDR manipulation)
Good point. That would be an incentive for us to push for free drivers
(another battle we have to fight) and choose an A-platinum rated
hardware listed at http://h-node.org/
(it lists only a single high end
model that is released in 2014 and about 9 models that released in 2013,
we have to certify more models there. Anyone interested in certifying
laptops at this months' meetup at Directiplex? All we need a gnewsense
or another FSF certified distro live cd, debian live at the moment
doesn't have a recent testing image.)
3. They could also claim that it would be virtually
impossible to verify
whether each request for refund has come after Microsoft software had been
removed completely (and we can't allow them to implement a kill switch)
Acer America asks the user to submit the laptop at their service center.
It will be removed by Acer personnel.
4. They could claim that they would be unable to
market and sell their
products without a warranty for performance and quality if they are unable
to control which OS is loaded on to the PC, and that blank devices can only
be niche, probably obsolete products
Not a good argument. They cannot get away that easily from providing
hardware warranty because a different OS is chosen by the user.
5. Microsoft tax is also the name for the underhand
practice where it
extracts a heavy price for licenses from OEMs that sell more than a certain
percentage of Linux PCs, and no OEM would want to acknowledge this publicly
Well, its their call anyway whether to make it public or not.
6. OEMs rely on quick obsolescence, which is
accentuated with Microsoft
bloatware, to keep on getting your money every few years - Linux makes this
cycle much longer, plus after sales service harder - so no positive
incentive for them
I don't think they would make that argument publicly.
And so on and so forth. Of course, you'll
appreciate that I'm just playing
the devil's advocate here to help us consider what would be the best
strategy for getting a wider range of devices without a preloaded OS. The
demand for this option is minuscule, as most Linux enthusiasts would not
mind having a dual boot system, if it allowed them more choice in how they
use the device. India, especially, sees people buy these OS-free PCs to
install pirated copies of Windows on them, thus defeating the whole purpose
for which many people have devoted huge amounts of energy and time.
Things are changing in many places with GNU/Linux taught in schools.
People know they have a choice and cost of choosing freedom isn't very high.
Anyway, all the best with the case. I wish you