[p2p-hackers] Stop Palladium and TCPA Now!

Zooko zooko at zooko.com
Mon Feb 3 11:58:02 UTC 2003

The Treacherous Computing Platform Alliance certainly *will* control what you 
can do with your computer, and it certainly will include preventing you from 
booting a free operating system.  I speak not of the Trusted Computing Platform 
Alliance spec that Adam read, but of the strategic plan that is currently being 
executed by the authors of that spec.

Lest you think that this is all FUD, consider that there are already millions of 
Xboxes in the hands of consumers, which cannot boot a free operating system 
without cracking open the case and installing a modchip.

This level of constraint is sufficient to prevent 99% of people from ever being 
able to try Linux on their computers, but Microsoft is hard at work designing 
improvements that will significantly increase the difficulty.

If your mother buys a "Microsoft PC" next Christmas to do her e-mail, it may 
very well be one that cannot be made to boot Linux without expensive and 
potentially damaging hardware surgery.

Now, Adam is probably right that the Trusted Computing Platform Alliance spec 
doesn't say that a TCPA computer must prevent you from booting Linux, but Seth 
is right that the Treacherous Computing Platform Alliance *will* prevent you 
from booting a free operating system and *will* control everything that you do 
with your computer, and soon.

As far as I can tell, the current TCPA spec is intended to make sure that you 
can't view Microsoft Media DRM'ed videos through Wine, vmware, bochs, etc.  so 
that you can't bypass the DRM.



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