Author Topic: Trusted Computing?  (Read 3889 times)

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Offline Arachoid

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Trusted Computing?
« on: July 21, 2008, 09:50:30 am »
WARNING: This topic is mostly PC related, not really about games, but I figured PC gamers would know more than anyone else about this...

So I was reading Wikipedia's Windows 7 page (I'm pretty excited about this), when I got to the part with a big scary acronym: NGSCB, Next-Generation Secure Computing Base. Essentially, it allows Microsoft and other members of the Trusted Computing Group to take ownership of the Trusted Computing Module (and, so they claim, your computer) and tell you what you can do with it.

They can tell you how many times per day you can play certain songs, which programs you can use to play them, how long you can play games, to what you can read and write on the Internet.

As any American who can locate Kabul on a map (in other words, 3% of the population) knows, this is a terrible violation of our rights granted to us in the Constitution, particularly freedom of speech.

So what should we do? Go to Mac/Linux? Irradiate Redmond? Avoid 7 like the plague? Or am I just overreacting?  Please clarify.

P.S.
http://www.lafkon.net/tc/TC_HIGH_mirror06.html


I say NO! to all limits.
Unfortunately, I don't think we're far enough into the Civ stage to have deveoped into the 'Infinite-ghz processing' research tree yet...

Offline IamMe

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2008, 10:10:54 am »
Wait, I skimmed through the Windows 7 wikipedia page, the NGSCB wikipedia page, googled it, and watched the movie, and I didn't see or hear anything about them controlling how many times you can play songs or play games. I Ctrl+F'd the wikipedia page and there is nothing that I read about the above complaint.

Or maybe I'm just part of the 97% of the world population. :P

Can you show me exactly where you saw that?

Offline Andrew Ryan

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2008, 12:24:10 pm »
Sam here, I'm very interested in this.
"Don't worry 'bout me. I wouldn't worry about me. Don't you worry about me. Don't you worry 'bout me!" - Talking Heads, Don't Worry About the Government

Offline ArkServer

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2008, 01:57:36 pm »
In a business way of view this can come in handy because you don't want employees to listen to music while working  or run/install software etc (although it can be restricted without trusted computing)

Offline Ultramarine

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2008, 01:59:31 pm »
In business maybe, otherwise I'd hate the thought of this in homes across the world.
The porn industry would dry up....

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Offline Legodragonxp

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2008, 05:26:41 pm »
Well, if Windows 7 is anywhere near as bad as Vista was ( or ME2 as we call it at work), I wouldn't want to have much stock in Microsoft.

As mentioned above, it would be a great tool for a businesses wanting to limit what people can do with their business computers. For home use, it would be another reason for people to just stay with Windows XP or go to something else. It will become a legal issue eventually with the FTC stepping in and forcing Microsoft to back down.

IMO: Something to watch, but not to worry too much about, yet.

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Offline Andrew Ryan

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2008, 05:32:41 pm »
I hope so. I don't want to inadvertently help Bill Gates and his plans for world computer domination.
"Don't worry 'bout me. I wouldn't worry about me. Don't you worry about me. Don't you worry 'bout me!" - Talking Heads, Don't Worry About the Government

Offline Arachoid

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2008, 11:58:12 pm »
Wait, I skimmed through the Windows 7 wikipedia page, the NGSCB wikipedia page, googled it, and watched the movie, and I didn't see or hear anything about them controlling how many times you can play songs or play games. I Ctrl+F'd the wikipedia page and there is nothing that I read about the above complaint.

Or maybe I'm just part of the 97% of the world population. :P

Can you show me exactly where you saw that?

Oh, I was speculating, but I believe I saw it someone. Anyway, it is completely possible; every action must be approved by the Trusted Computing Group before it is complete, so all they'd have to do is keep a log of what you've done.

And I agree that this technology would be very useful for businesses, military, or financial use (as in automated teller machines), but for your everyday consumer it just isn't right.

I'm just afraid that the general public, being largely ignorant to what goes on on their computer as long as it lets them download pictures and send email and check their MyWasteOfSpace and whatnot, will just lie down and take this.

If ever a time for a digital rebellion there has been, the integration of the NGSCB into the Windows kernel will be it.
I say NO! to all limits.
Unfortunately, I don't think we're far enough into the Civ stage to have deveoped into the 'Infinite-ghz processing' research tree yet...

Offline ArkServer

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2008, 06:18:29 am »
Well, what about parents that want to limit their kids to just playing some games or use the internet?

Offline Daxx

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #9 on: July 22, 2008, 06:22:52 am »
Then they should be able to buy a piece of software that does that. Just don't tie it into the operating system and foist it upon everyone.

Offline IamMe

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #10 on: July 22, 2008, 03:13:54 pm »
Oh, I was speculating, but I believe I saw it someone. Anyway, it is completely possible; every action must be approved by the Trusted Computing Group before it is complete, so all they'd have to do is keep a log of what you've done.

Ah. Now I see.

Well this could be a problem. I guess boycotting would show them we don't like it. But then again, the 97% world population thing. (This includes just about everyone in my family (besides me and my dad), and all my friends and their family. :-\)
« Last Edit: July 22, 2008, 03:16:18 pm by IamMe »

Offline Andrew Ryan

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #11 on: July 22, 2008, 03:15:21 pm »
I beat some hacker is going to write a virus that disables the program or deletes it. At least, I hope so...
"Don't worry 'bout me. I wouldn't worry about me. Don't you worry about me. Don't you worry 'bout me!" - Talking Heads, Don't Worry About the Government

Offline Cow

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #12 on: July 22, 2008, 04:43:19 pm »
If they try to control what I do with my computer, then I'm going to go to Microsoft, locate the person responsible, and hit them with a sledge hammer until they fix it.

Offline Mr. Wizard

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #13 on: July 22, 2008, 04:43:50 pm »
No, the opposite will be true. Some hacker will crack it and use that to collect information on people. Built in spyware.

Offline Tr0n

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #14 on: July 22, 2008, 07:18:33 pm »
As if Windows doesn't already have the means to track you.  The kernel is tied right into the TCP IP layer.  Why else have there been 90 some odd Windows updates since XP SP2.

Bottom line.  It's already been done.  It's just now becoming acceptable enough to drop it into Windows and give it a pretty acronym.  It's probably more for stopping piracy than anything else.  Not only can it tell you how many times you played Spore in a month, but it can read the registry and send your key to EA.

The computer world has never been private.  Make no mistake.  Since you plugged in an ethernet cable or configured a wireless card, you can and will be tracked.  I know, I work with corporate software that can track every letter you type and every click you press.  And this is the easy to use software, much less programmed into your system!

But in the end, it's not the guy who downloads the latest Kayne West CD on bootleg torrent sites that they're looking for.  It's the widespread contributors of child pornography and people who leak Half Life 3 that they're looking for (sadly for MS, this doesn't help much when you can't prosecute foreign abusers).  I'm more worried about the baseline ability to block installations or protecting an exe with the software.  If we though DRM was bad, this might be a whole new ballgame.

That said, it is a blatant violation or our rights as computer users and citizens of the US (and other countries)... but if you're on the straight and narrow, does it really matter?  The cable company knows when you watch Skinemax at 1am during free sample week.  Cell phones are largely digital.  Every call you make can be traced and recorded.  We're in a society where we gladly gave up our right to privacy and applauded anything that could let us sit on our asses more often and watch more American Idol while snacking on our cheezy poofs.  If society wanted privacy that much, broadband and cell phones would have to have been a fad and we'd all be in the computer stone age again.
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Offline Arachoid

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #15 on: July 23, 2008, 11:19:13 pm »
As if Windows doesn't already have the means to track you...

...Bottom line.  It's already been done.  It's just now becoming acceptable enough to drop it into Windows and give it a pretty acronym.  It's probably more for stopping piracy than anything else.  Not only can it tell you how many times you played Spore in a month, but it can read the registry and send your key to EA.

The computer world has never been private.  Make no mistake.  Since you plugged in an ethernet cable or configured a wireless card, you can and will be tracked...

...I'm more worried about the baseline ability to block installations or protecting an exe with the software.  If we though DRM was bad, this might be a whole new ballgame.

...That said, it is a blatant violation or our rights as computer users and citizens of the US (and other countries)... but if you're on the straight and narrow, does it really matter? ...

Tracking isn't the point. Knowing what your doing isn't the point. Privacy, although important, isn't the main concern here.

Competition is. Microsoft, Intel, HP and friends (i.e. anyone in the Totalitarian Computing Group and anyone who strikes deals with them) can decide what you can install and use. Say you wanted to install Firefox on Windows 7. Mozilla would have to pay 600 USD or so a year to certify that they are 'trustworthy'.

Microsoft, however, could still ban it from Windows computers because they could claim that is not trustworthy, but really they just want to lock people into using IE to either reverse or stall IE's downward spiral.

Not only does this strategy ruin small open-source developers (what average Joe can afford the licensing fees just to write a media player?), it locks users into products made by Microsoft and its partners.

That is the main point.
« Last Edit: July 23, 2008, 11:21:05 pm by Arachoid »
I say NO! to all limits.
Unfortunately, I don't think we're far enough into the Civ stage to have deveoped into the 'Infinite-ghz processing' research tree yet...

Offline Tr0n

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #16 on: July 24, 2008, 10:20:30 am »
I completely agree with you, but we all know that's inevitable if you're going to choose an MS operating system.  Then again, they have like 90 percent of the home PC market share.  I don't think it'll be much of an option.  Luckily, for now, MS shot themselves in the foot by poorly programming their earlier operating systems.  Run-the-business applications that won't run on MS's new Trusted Computing platform will have to run in a more traditional environment.  My guess is that for the meantime, it'll be an optional or on-demand thing that can be turned on or off for compatibility.

However, ten years from now, it'll be a whole new ball game.  As soon as MS drops support for a given OS, businesses and home PCs inevitable upgrade.  Then Windows 7 becomes the minimum requirement for all new software, then's when we have to start worrying about that stuff.

Then again, no one really denies the pure fact that the internet is the Devil's playground where no one obeys any laws put forth to protect digital distributors' property.  There are no real internet police and we're left to rely on our own ethics to guide us through a world of moral gray areas.  I know I'm going back off on my tangent, sorry.

MS has been headed for complete PC domination for a long time now and there never was any stopping them.  They will do what they want, when they want to.  Because you hit "I agree" to every license agreement you've ever seen, you gave up ALL rights to privacy and control in exchange for the honor of playing a game or using an Operating System.

So on a philosophical platform, it's completely unfair, totalitarian, and underhanded.  But the kids want to play Halo and the businesses must conduct business.    They have us where they want us... at their mercy.  Just like the fact the we have to buy 4 dollar gas... we can complain about it until we're blue in the face, but we can't do a damn thing about it.
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Offline Mr. Wizard

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #17 on: July 24, 2008, 10:34:13 am »
I want to see that movie. It sounds so epic.

Offline Arachoid

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #18 on: July 24, 2008, 12:58:52 pm »
So on a philosophical platform, it's completely unfair, totalitarian, and underhanded.  But the kids want to play Halo and the businesses must conduct business.    They have us where they want us... at their mercy.  Just like the fact the we have to buy 4 dollar gas... we can complain about it until we're blue in the face, but we can't do a damn thing about it.

Alone, no. But look at how much heat Microsoft took over Vista, and that was just hardware incompatibility and poor performance; when people start figuring out that Billy G.'s flunkies get to decide what they can and cannot do, they'll get angry. And when people get angry, they complain. And when people complain on a large enough scale, the media notices. And when this gets broadcast, the government will notice (if they haven't already) and do one of two things:

1) Shut them down, as it obviously violates the Constitution.
Or, 2) Help them wholeheartedly. I'm sure the government would love it if citizens couldn't criticize them.

Either way, we're in for a bit of a rough patch. The only thing we can do now is burn some Ubuntu CDs and hope those hold out.
I say NO! to all limits.
Unfortunately, I don't think we're far enough into the Civ stage to have deveoped into the 'Infinite-ghz processing' research tree yet...

Offline Tr0n

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #19 on: July 25, 2008, 07:10:20 pm »
ONLY Microsoft can shrug off 5 yeasr of development and not fold.  They just threw Vista in the trash and hired all of Pakistan to write Windows 7.

And guess what most of the tax-paying businesses run on in America... Winders :)

Of course the gov't will stop certain things, but MS will not be shut down until a clear competitor emerges and simply takes over (pop quiz... there were three major microprocessor developers for a bit back in the early 2000's... who was the one that lost?)

I would love to see MS go down in flames for their stupidity at times but the bottom line is that is mommy can xfer digital pictures of the babies and send them to all of the rest of her friends who don't care and daddy can pull up ESPN every morning while drinking his coffee and the kids can play Halo all day long on their networked PCs, then whatever OS it comes on will win.

If the brilliant minds who write Linux can make a computer EASIER and CHEAPER to use than Microsoft, then MS will burn.  But until MS gets their hands out of the pockets of every major software and hardware manufacturer in the industry, it won't happen.
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I is more stronger than Darth Vapour
Obey me, I is your new dictator

Offline Arachoid

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Re: Trusted Computing?
« Reply #20 on: July 25, 2008, 09:34:33 pm »
ONLY Microsoft can shrug off 5 yeasr of development and not fold.  They just threw Vista in the trash and hired all of Pakistan to write Windows 7.

And guess what most of the tax-paying businesses run on in America... Winders :)

Of course the gov't will stop certain things, but MS will not be shut down until a clear competitor emerges and simply takes over

(pop quiz... there were three major microprocessor developers for a bit back in the early 2000's... who was the one that lost?)

If the brilliant minds who write Linux can make a computer EASIER and CHEAPER to use than Microsoft, then MS will burn.  But until MS gets their hands out of the pockets of every major software and hardware manufacturer in the industry, it won't happen.

Pop Quiz: Well, I was in first grade then, but I'm gonna go and guess VIA. Intel and AMD are still majors (not so much AMD anymore), but VIA only gets into the cheap stuff. That or AppaMotorIBM or whoever made the PowerPC rchitecture. Rather foolish to not just go along with standard x86, though.

Yeah. I think that soon Linux will be able to really move into the home computer niche. They aren't quite there yet, but close. Hardware incompatibility, lack of standardization, and the constant Terminal use have got to go before Linux can take over.

And Linux is already cheaper; it's about 300 USD cheaper than Vista Ultimate.  :D

I'm predicting that after Linux gets its kinks worked out and Microsoft shoots themselves in the foot again, word will spread (case in point: iPod) and people will go crazy for Linux. All it needs is a little pushing from the industry after that and things could change very fast.

At the same time, however, I doubt there will be a Microsoft toppling shift in market share until around the time the Digital Generation replaces today's working generation in around 20 to 30 years. Old people can't keep up with tech and don't like it when it changes, so a major OS shift will have to wait until they die off.
I say NO! to all limits.
Unfortunately, I don't think we're far enough into the Civ stage to have deveoped into the 'Infinite-ghz processing' research tree yet...