The FSF's Anti-Windows 7 Campaign

You can read all of their propaganda here. I'm sure you'll find it either hilarious or as aggravating as I did. In response to this stupidity I wrote them an email. Would you like to read it?... Of course you bloody would :D
I am writing to give my two cents on the "Windows 7 Sins" Website.
About three years ago, I was looking for a comparison between Windows XP and Windows Vista's performance to render judgment upon whether I would upgrade. It was then that I found a website, I think it was something like "badvista" or something to that effect. It was run by the Free Software Foundation and it listed many scary and frightening facts about Windows Vista. At the time I was an impressionable fifteen year old and I took in all of these facts like a sponge. It was then that I discovered Ubuntu and I've had a windows system dual booted with Linux ever since, be it Mint, OpenSuse or Ubuntu. I was terrified at the idea that Microsoft would be spying on me if I installed Windows Vista. Since then I have come to understand many things. For instance, Open Source isn't immune to the "evil" of propriety software, just look at Darwin, or as it is known in it's modern guise: Apple Mac osX 10.6 Snow Leopard. I have also come to understand that the facts presented in badvista and windows7sins is nothing more than mindless propaganda designed to instill fear in people and sell (not in a literal sense) Open Source software.
In my eyes you are using devious scare tactics which make you no better than Microsoft. And did you ever stop to think about Apple and it's monopoly? Or is the fact that osX is based on a GNU distro enough to absolve them of their "sins"?
I, personally, am currently sporting a desktop PC dual booted with Linux Mint and Windows 7 RTM (final) And have had no impediments when it comes to copying, distributing or sending media files, this DRM crap is no more than a myth to me. WGA is just another fun challenge to circumvent. And to be frank, if Microsoft were spying on me, surely they would have had me arrested by now.
I would like to clarify that I don't have anything against Open Source software, I love Linux and always will. I also love Windows 7, It's the most wonderful operating system I've ever had the pleasure of using. Vista was crap, XP was not much better, but Microsoft seem to have gotten it right this time. I love and respect this OS so much that I'd go out and pay for it were it not for the fact that Microsoft have given me a complimentary copy of Windows 7 Ultimate for participating on the Technical Beta. I invest as much time in using Linux Mint as I do in Windows 7, and if games companies produced Linux versions of their games, I'd consider switching permanently. But as it stands, that's where Microsoft has beaten Linux.
I think this whole website was designed as a spiteful backlash at the fact that Linux is no longer the only operating system that runs effectively on netbooks.

I just wish software vendors would stop taking cheap shots at each other and allow the end user to decide which software they want to use.

I anticipate your reply.
I just get so annoyed when people pull stunts like this.

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I like the bit about children being brainwashed into using Windows. Children need to use a computer to further their education, they don't need to spend inordinate amounts of time struggling to understand an OS who's fundamental principal is to do things the hard way. Teachers can't waste their time learning how to use complicated OS's, in order to do what they could have done simply and quickly with Windows. They need to spend their time teaching children. Besides, teachers are not computer nerds, a lot of them have enough trouble struggling with Windows, which is made for people who don't know how to use computers.

I totally agree with you, here in the UK, students aren't taught CLI's until they're at least well into their first year of college. Linux is far too complex for kids to use. Just the other day I was using Linux when my ten year old stepbrother asked me what it is and what the point of using it was when it's so complicated. Kids just wouldn't be able to grasp the fundamentals of Linux, unlike windows which gets easier with every release.


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I'm sure Linux has it's place. I've only used it once, when a fellow wanted me to fix his computer, install a printer, hook up the internet, some new drivers, virus check, so on, normal computer stuff. Imagine my shock when I get there and it's Linux. And a distro I've never even heard of (and couldn't figure out how to check what it was anyway). Took me about seven hours to nut all that out, and I am (was before the financial crisis) an IT professional. Imagine a normal person trying to do it! Python programs, and having to compile things, and so on. It's just too much for normal people. Linux is probably an awesome OS once you know how to do everything, and I've heard for servers it's just brilliant.

For me Linux is merely an academic curiosity, it's finctionality no greater than that of Windows. Aside from the ethical "Linux is the saviour of the computing world" crap, what else does it offer? Don't get me wrong, I enjoy using it but that's only because it's different to Windows, not necessarily better.


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I do have a copy of a CD bootable Linux, but I've never gotten around to using. I can't find a reason. What kind of stuff can you do with it?

I guess one of the main uses of Linux is in supercomputing, seeing as windows doesn't run on that kind of specially designed hardware. I guess the other use it has is satisfying curiosity. I guess it's also kind of fun to use, all the command line stuff is quite fun and interesting, but as for practical deployments of Linux, it's main uses are supercomputing and servers. The one thing it has over windows is that it can be installed on just about anything, phones, computers, the X-box 360, the PS3 etc.

Thanks for saying my email was articulate, that's how I intended it to be, but as I got about half way through, my anger got the better of me and it turned into a rant, lol. As yet I've had no reply from the FSF, maybe they weren't expecting people to see through their mask of righteousness and call them out on it. What worries me is how many people are going to fall for it. As I said in the email, what they're doing is a mixture of misinformation, propaganda and flat out lies.
Is it just me or is Microsoft the only one of the big three (Microsoft, Apple and the FSF) that doesn't resort to cheap shots via advertising? Rather than talk about how crap Mac OS x is they'd rather talk about how awesome their products are. Unlike Apple with their downright childish "I'm A Mac" adverts.

Lol, I'll definitely agree with that statement. Incidentally, I've just written to Paul Thurrott, who runs, asking him to write an article on his site about this sickening display, It would be interesting to read his reaction to this.
The main thing about this that has made me angry is that more often than not, Linux users are seen as being above the petty advertising crap as Linux developers aren't out to make money. This shambles is having a doubly negative effect by spreading fear and lies about Windows and giving Linux users a bad name. I see no point in this crusade, in the end, what is it going to achieve apart from less profit for Microsoft and more people still not paying for Linux?

This is a copy of the email I sent to Paul Thurrott:


I'm an avid reader of and love the way you write your articles; they're funny, informative and downright entertaining to read. My purpose for writing to you is to ask that you write an article on the following site: Windows 7 Sins — The case against Microsoft and proprietary software

I would love to read your reaction to this seeing as yours is a very prominent voice in the Windows community and people will likely listen to you. I feel that this matter (i.e. the Free Software Foundation's mixture of scare tactics, propaganda, misinformation and flat out lies) should be addressed as it will not only scare people away from Windows 7 out of paranoia and fear of Microsoft's alleged spying on it's customers, but also give Linux users like myself a bad name (although as a dual booter I seem to be exiled from much of both the Windows and Linux communities)
The FSF stands behind a mask of morality and righteousness when, after reading their Windows 7 Sins website, it's plain to me that they're using a devious advertising campaign in response to the fact that Windows 7 is going to obliterate them in the netbook market.
I myself have emailed the FSF regarding this issue and have received no reply. I hope that with the help of people like yourself voicing their opinions on this matter, the FSF will be forced to reassess their campaign tactics and at the very least be provoked into reacting to a public outcry at their sickening abuse of the power they hold over the world of Open Source software.

I eagerly anticipate your reply.

Chad Mucklow, a young Windows & Linux user.

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New Member
I always thought the very best thing about Windows is that it allows people who don't have the time or inclination to learn about computers access to them. Without Microsoft, the IT industry may very well still be in it's infancy. Imagine how boring the internet would be if lay people with good imaginations couldn't publish their ideas? Practically for free, no less.

Put that way, it sounds like Windows gives more freedom to users that so-called "free" operating systems. I always thought that the original intent of The Free Software Foundation was to give users the freedom of choice. This latest campaign seems to have perverted the original wholesome ideals that the FSF put forward. Now it sounds like "You have a choice, make sure you choose OUR operating systems" It's hypocrisy. That's one of the many things about this latest move that I'm disgusted by.
You can't promote an ideal while at the same time doing the exact opposite yourself.

Some thoughts, I have both Win 7 rc and several linux distributions (Ubuntu and PCLinuxOS primariy) installed in a multiboot setup. I love Win 7 and intend to purchase the final shortly after it becomes available.
As to linux being overly complicated, while it does have a fairly steep learning curve if you want to learn the CLI way of doing things, CLI isn't the only option. Both Ubuntu and PCLinuxOS have fully embraced the GUI way of doing things just like Windows has done for years. There is no need for the CLI in these and other distros, everything can be done GUI.
Now some linux folks prefer the command line approach but I'm not one of them. There are a few things (like installing the latest "proprietary" ATi video card drivers) that require a commands from a terminal and in this case there is a Wiki to help.

That is a rare occurence however, about the same as needing to use CMD in Windows.

Installing software is even easy using Synaptic a GUI package management tool.

I also use Firefox to the near exclusion of IE7/8 in windows, my primary e-mail client is Thunderbird.
Both of these programs are open source.
From my experience open source and proprietary software can coexist.

There are some things that Windows can do better than linux and that's what keeps me loyal to Windows.
Since I've been using Win 7 (since the early beta days) I do find myself booting into my linux distros less.

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For you or I, perhaps Linux is easy, but think of it from a child's perspective, in school I was first exposed to a computer at the age of 7 and it took me forever to learn things that I now deem basic Windows functions. I'm not saying Linux is overly complicated but that it's too complex for a child to grasp.

The counter argument is that we find Windows easy because it's what we grew up with from an early age, but personally I can't see a child being able to understand the synaptic package manager as easily as open .exe>click>click>done, but that's just my view.
I also think it would be irrisponsible teaching a child Linux in a world where less than 2% of computers have it installed. Most of the world uses Windows which is why children should be taught Windows when they first begin to use computers and perhaps Linux when they've become more fluent with computers.

I see no point in this crusade, in the end, what is it going to achieve apart from less profit for Microsoft and more people still not paying for Linux?
That is the point though. They hate MS.

It is akin to Liberals, They hate anything and everything capitalist in nature if it is not benefiting them directly.
They would rather steal it from others than acquire it through their own merits.

In much the same way, Li-Nazis can't stand the fact MS exists. So, rather than try and truly produce something that the masses would want, they would tear down the competition and leave no other choice. Which is the definition of hypocrisy.

One of the biggest things that turned me off of linux early on, was the constant unrelenting berating of the fact I like and use Windows, but how do I do (X?) in linux. "You use windows? OMG what the hell is wrong with you?" Never getting to any answer for my questions. Rather than teaching, many in the linux community would rather flame war. So I have very little respect for the whole of the linux community, however, it is getting slightly better. Still you mention MS or Windows in some linux forums and watch the heads explode.

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The only thing "not really" holding be back from fully utilizing Ubuntu is that I need new hardware to run vm or wine in/under ubuntu to play my online games like cod1, cod2, cod4, WoW, Warcraft III. Running all that in an operating system that is not made for windows games is not bearable "to laggy, to jumpy, not top notch hardware". video drivers are a pain sometimes under unix/linux. Overclocking software for video card just down right sux in linux. Once you break the operating system you must reinstall cannot count how many endless times i've broken linux and had to reinstall, but you live and learn, 4 years I did. I cannot remember if I have broken windows ever not once. I have been a pc user since 98 and windows 7 64 bit is by the far the best operating system I have ever used. You get spied on in your own house, phone even when u walk into walmart, even more than we don't know but that's the future "lockdown".

I like all three OS's Windows 7, Windows XP and Ubuntu/Linux.
Well thats my sayso.

I myself recently uninstalled Linux Mint, A. because of this sorry s**t with the FSF, and B. I just got sick of it taking up valuable HDD space that could be spent on... well nothing, at this point in time, the Linux community has pissed me off so much that I'd rather have an empty HDD than their OS

I ran Linux alongside XP for a couple of years, mostly Mepis, but then I had 2 PCs side by side. Occasionally I get the urge to go back to Linux but then I remember that I spent most of the time trying to make it act like Windows anyway, or at least get it to run Windows apps.

I loved the 'getting your hands dirty' aspect of Linux, playing around with configuration files etc but then there were also a lot of headaches from compiling and dependencies and other assorted problems.

Now if I get the urge I just fire up Virtualbox and install some distro or other and play about with it, like last week I revisited Mepis for the first time in 5 years or so, and caught up with Kubuntu and OpenSuse. Fun for a while but ultimately W7 does everything that I need it to and more. The sheer depth of apps available for Windows far overshadows Linux in my experience, and even if one particular app doesn't work there is always a handful of alternatives.

I have to say I did enjoy going back to Mepis, and I could easily run it as my main OS but then I'd always need Vbox with XP to back it up so what's the point?

Anyone know any all in one machines now working with windows 7?

Hi All,

I am new to this forum. I recently got a new computer installed with Windows 7 Ultimate (beta version most likely), I love this OS so much better that Vista. Only one HP all in one machine (printer,scanner,fax) won't work properly with it. I've tried searching the web for some "all in one" Windows 7 machines, but to no avail, can anyone out there help, or know anything about this? I would appreciate any input on this matter.:redface:


Hi All,

I am new to this forum. I recently got a new computer installed with Windows 7 Ultimate (beta version most likely), I love this OS so much better that Vista. Only one HP all in one machine (printer,scanner,fax) won't work properly with it. I've tried searching the web for some "all in one" Windows 7 machines, but to no avail, can anyone out there help, or know anything about this? I would appreciate any input on this matter.:redface:

Since this has nothing to do with this thread as far as I can see then you would be much better off posting this in the Hardware section. Try reading this in the meantime, it might help.

lol, this is why I stay away from OEM machines. If you build a system yourself you can always check up what drivers are available beforehand. Plus you get the added benefit of knowing exactly what's in your machine.

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