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Microsoft pulls-in effort to kill Ethernet!

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  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    http://winsupersite.com/windows-rt/surface-rt-users-no-ethernet-you

    Microsoft apparently has purposely removed the drivers for Ethernet adapters from Windows RT, even though they seem to work. And they seem to actively block third party drivers for Ethernet too. It's an effort to kill Ethernet in favor of WLAN. Read the comments - some commenters posted links where manufacturers claim that they were asked by Microsoft to pull Ethernet-adapter drivers for RT!

    http://plugable.com/2012/12/11/windows-rt-surface-usb-ethernet-takedown

    The driver that enables certain USB Ethernet adapters like the Plugable USB2-E100 to work with new Windows RT devices like the Microsoft Surface has been pulled from the chipset manufacturer's site (ASIX). Microsoft is requesting that it be pulled from all downstream sites also.  Microsoft did not intend for this driver to be distributed.

    Some have found hacks, but 8.1 RT seems to disable those.

    Very disturbing. My theory why they are doing this, is because Ethernet gives too much control to the users: You can simply pull the cable if all the phone home gets too much. With Wi-Fi it's more difficult, - some devices don't even have a turn-off button for Wi-Fi connections anymore. Sure, you can turn off the Wi-Fi router, but then you disable all connections, for all people in the house (often these routers are a combined device - you turn off your TV and phone connections too)

    Together with the forced online-accounts in the 8.1 beta and all the forced-online requirements in the original Xbox One design, it paints a very dreary picture. Microsoft wants to FORCE an ubiquitous and inescapable cloud. It's not a natural development anymore, but pure pushing, forcing and bullying on all fronts - removing drivers, killing off previous offerings (Office family pack) to push the cloud versions, and other measures. There is only the stick, and no carrot.

    This guy might be an *, but Microsoft's actions validate his conclusion:

    As time passes, more and more companies will find innovative ways of ruining the accepted, efficient workflows, just for the sake of money. You will find yourself clicking ten  times more buttons and options just to get what you could do so easily in the past, RE: Windows frigging 8.1 and friends. The normal menu is not coming back, ever, and you will see yet more forced online integration and similar crap cropping everywhere.      

    Then, it will become subscription based *, with monthly fees and mandatory online checkins. Following the  trend, you will get mandatory ads in every program, and it will be against whatever law or license agreement to remove them. You will not be able to install programs that were not preapproved by this or that company. And so forth. This is your bright future, and it will happen slowly, so that people do not resist violently.

    He's wrong with one point though: It doesn't happen slowly at all.

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    while I am not sure I like the things that have been going on I just can not see an evil plot to remove Ethernet the way this post seems to be claiming.

    I suspect that there is more to the real story and it's not some evil plan.

    for starters WiFI is a way to connect that uses ETHERNET ... if they removed Ethernet then no local wifi would work.

  • User profile image
    spivonious

    Seeing as the RT devices are pretty much wifi-only, I'm not surprised that MS would want to remove an unsupported Ethernet driver from the OS.

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    , spivonious wrote

    Seeing as the RT devices are pretty much wifi-only, I'm not surprised that MS would want to remove an unsupported Ethernet driver from the OS.

    And why is it unsupported?

    Thurrott:

    Tipped off to an official Surface Ethernet adapter I wasn't previously aware of, I figured that Microsoft had finally gotten it right because, after all, no existing Ethernet adapters work on Surface RT. But it turns out the joke is on me, and on all Surface RT users: Even Microsoft's official Surface Ethernet adapter does not work with Surface RT.

    People claim in the comments that there are drivers that make it possible, and MS shuts them down.

    http://plugable.com/2012/12/11/windows-rt-surface-usb-ethernet-takedown

    Thurrott seems to confirm this, and he's not exactly a "hater".

    So, why? It's not an ARM problem - there are ARM devices that work with Ethernet. So it's either a deliberate decision by Microsoft, or it's a technical glitch. Since there are third party solution that make it possible, it's most likely not a glitch.

    So it's a deliberate decision. Why is it a deliberate decision? What good would it be for Microsoft to shutdown Ethernet on Windows RT? The same drivers work after all in Windows 8 Pro and are built-in! And Microsoft even hunts down third party Ethernet drivers for Windows RT. So they are pulling real effort behind this.

    Well, I have presented my theory why they would do this: Microsoft sees Windows RT as the future, and this future must not have Ethernet to make the cloud even more inescapable. More sticks without carrots.

  • User profile image
    blowdart

    I like how it's called Official when obviously it wasn't.

    Look, RT is meant to be for *Pad tablets, where the peripherals and the drivers are tightly controlled to reduce the support burden and the mess of will nilly drivers that you get on desktops, with crashes and bugs (thanks ATI, Nvidia and Intel). By controlling the drivers, and collecting the crash logs you can react quicker and push the drivers out over Windows Update, something you can't do with 3rd party drivers at all.

    So yes, it is likely a deliberate decision. Does it mean there's a plot to kill wired connections? Not likely, otherwise they'd have killed them for the surface pro too wouldn't they? Nor would they have delivered built in drivers on the desktop.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again, we're too damn disorganized to be as evil as you think we are.

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    , blowdart wrote

    So yes, it is likely a deliberate decision. Does it mean there's a plot to kill wired connections? Not likely, otherwise they'd have killed them for the surface pro too wouldn't they? Nor would they have delivered built in drivers on the desktop.

    You guys cannot kill off wired connections on x86 Windows 8 because too many PCs are connected wired. This would have completely killed Windows 8.

    RT is another matter - kill Ethernet on it right now, so that the pesky wired connections (and the ability to pull them) won't be a hindrance in the future. And RT is considered to be "future".

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    @wastingtimewithforums: You do realize that every wifi device has an "airplane mode", which they are required by the FAA to have to be allowed to use those devices on aircraft, which means that disabling a wifi connection is actually even easier than most wired connections.

    My laptop has a button on it to disable the wifi. If I want to "pull" my wired connection on the desktop I have to crawl under the desk. Which is easier?

    Also, wireless connections are slower, less reliable, suffer from interference and airspace congestion, are harder to provision in large buildings, and less secure no matter how many layers of encryption you throw on them. Wired connections are not going away any time soon and to think that MS is involved in some kind of conspiracy to kill wired connections is frankly absurd even for you.

    EDIT: Speaking of wireless connections, it's kind of weird that MSR Cambridge offers no wireless connection for personal devices brought to work. There's both wired and wireless corpnet, but only MS-issued and installed devices are allowed to connect to corpnet. There's guest wifi (and wired), but employees are legally not permitted to use that. And that's it, there's nothing else. Apparently they're working on providing something, but there's legal reasons why this is so difficult for some reason.

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    , Sven Groot wrote

    @wastingtimewithforums: You do realize that every wifi device has an "airplane mode", which they are required by the FAA to have to be allowed to use those devices on aircraft, which means that disabling a wifi connection is actually even easier than most wired connections.

    It's not easier:
    http://www.surfacetablethelp.com/2012/10/how-to-turn-airplane-mode-onoff-on-surface.html

    http://winsupersite.com/windows-8/windows-8-tip-use-airplane-mode

    Just pulling the cable is far easier (on a laptop/tablet).

    , Sven Groot wrote

    Also, wireless connections are slower, less reliable, suffer from interference and airspace congestion, are harder to provision in large buildings, and less secure no matter how many layers of encryption you throw on them. Wired connections are not going away any time soon and to think that MS is involved in some kind of conspiracy to kill wired connections is frankly absurd even for you.

    EDIT: Speaking of wireless connections, it's kind of weird that MSR Cambridge offers no wireless connection for personal devices brought to work. There's both wired and wireless corpnet, but only MS-issued and installed devices are allowed to connect to corpnet. There's guest wifi (and wired), but employees are legally not permitted to use that. And that's it, there's nothing else. Apparently they're working on providing something, but there's legal reasons why this is so difficult for some reason.

    Hey I agree. Wired rules! Yet MS is waging war on Ethernet connection with Windows RT. Why is that? Incompetence or malice? And Windows 8.1 RT is even more of a crackdown on Ethernet, not a fix.

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    Sounds more like a war against unsupported drivers to me, but I guess that's not evil enough to be true for you.

    And turning on airplane mode is three steps at most (two if you're on the desktop). My laptop has a switch for it. It's also three steps at most on iOS, and the iPad doesn't have a supported way to use a wired connection either. OMG Apple are trying to kill wired networks!

    EDIT: And how would it prevent breaking the connection, anyway? I can still unplug my router. All you need is an AP in the vicinity of the device and it's just as easy to pull as having a wired connection to the device itself would be. Unless you're proposing that MS also wants to install some kind of worldwide, pervasive, impossible to block wireless network (that's also free, because otherwise not paying your bills would still be a way to disconnect).

  • User profile image
    evildictait​or

    There is a lot of BS going on in this thread.

    Windows ships with large numbers of drivers because it doesn't know what devices are going to be installed into your x86 device ahead of time. Not so with ARM. WindowsRT does not ship with a wired Ethernet port, and hence they can make more space on your device for pictures of lolcats by not shipping the drivers for the devices that will never be on a WindowsRT device.

    If you plug in a USB Ethernet device, you will have to install the drivers from the CD or from Windows Update.

    Much as you might want this to be a conspiracy against Ethernet, it just isn't

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    , evildictait​or wrote

    WindowsRT does not ship with a wired Ethernet port, and hence they can make more space on your device for pictures of lolcats by not shipping the drivers for the devices that will never be on a WindowsRT device.

    If you plug in a USB Ethernet device, you will have to install the drivers from the CD or from Windows Update.

    http://winsupersite.com/windows-rt/surface-rt-users-no-ethernet-you

    no existing Ethernet adapters work on Surface RT.

    http://www.microsoft.com/surface/en-us/support/hardware-and-drivers/usb-to-ethernet-adapter

    Surface RT: Surface RT doesn't support use of a USB Ethernet adapter.

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    , blowdart wrote

    I've said it before and I'll say it again, we're too damn disorganized to be as evil as you think we are.

     

    LOL .... Wink

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    , Sven Groot wrote

    Sounds more like a war against unsupported drivers to me, but I guess that's not evil enough to be true for you.

    Why is it unsupported? Pretty much all x86 base drivers work in Windows RT.. except Ethernet.

    It's surely not an ARM restriction - there are ARM devices with Ethernet.

    Android can use Ethernet adapters, and that thing is a pure mobile OS! Yet Windows RT, a subset of the full powered Windows, can't! You can't tell me it's because of technical issues (the fact that third party drivers work [which get taken down by MS?!] is proof that it's no technical issue).

    Microsoft has deliberately crippled this feature on Windows RT on purpose. Reason? Forget my "conspiracy theories" if you want, but fact is that Ethernet is crippled on purpose, and Microsoft is putting effort to let it stay crippled. Why the heck is this the case? I am not saying that my explanation for Microsoft's motivation for this is perfect, but the issue exists nevertheless.

    , Sven Groot wrote

    EDIT: And how would it prevent breaking the connection, anyway? I can still unplug my router.

    And again I have to quote myself:

    Sure, you can turn off the Wi-Fi router, but then you disable all connections, for all people in the house (often these routers are a combined device - you turn off your TV and phone connections too)

    It's more of a hassle for sure turning off the router.

    This affair is not a perfect plan by any means, just yet another stepping stone for forced cloudification. A piece of the puzzle, not the full thing.

  • User profile image
    kettch

    @Sven Groot: Go back a few years and folks were griping about every single new feature, driver, and checkbox as being system bloat.

  • User profile image
    Bass

    Why doesn't anyone talk about the far bigger deal that you can't sideload applications easily? Remember it wasn't that long ago when you could code software for Windows and not have to get permission to publish it.

    The fact is Windows RT is a super locked down OS for appliances trying to compete in similar market to iOS. Which is just an element in a greater socio-technological trend towards establishing Oceania. Doubleplusgood.

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    @Bass:

    Oh, I have brought up sideloading with almost every W8 post.

  • User profile image
    Bass

    , wastingtime​withforums wrote

    @Bass:

    Oh, I have brought up sideloading with almost every W8 post.

    That you have. Smiley I'm sorry, I don't read your posts as often as I should be. It is appreciated though.

  • User profile image
    MasterPi

    , Sven Groot wrote

    to think that MS is involved in some kind of conspiracy to kill wired connections is frankly absurd even for you.

    No. It's exactly the right level of absurdity from him.

     

    Nothing to see here...move along.

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