The European Commission looks set to upgrade its I.T. infrastructure to Microsoft Windows 7, according to PC World. This has rubbed a few people up the wrong way, not least of all open-source proponents, accusing the commission of favouritism in handing out its IT contracts.
The move would see more than 36,000 desktops upgraded to Windows 7, in a contract that could tie the commission to a 5-year deal with Microsoft. Red Hat distributor Jan Wildeboer expressed his dismay that the commission has opted out of going open-source in favour of a “lock-in” deal with the Windows giant:
We are hopeful that the Commission will practice what it preaches. In the interests of a fair and free market we must have vendor-neutral tendering..
According to the IDC European governments represent a massive 19% of all software purchases within the European Union, making this deal (although not yet finalized) a big win-win for Microsoft with potential for millions in revenue.
Commission spokesman for Inter-Institutional Administration Antony Gravili stressed that no descision has been made yet insofar as a large-scale adoption of Microsoft’s flagship OS. But it seems these words have done little to allay fears in the open-source community.
Windows 7 price-drop on Amazon
Firefox 4 smashes IE9′s first-day downloads
Millions download latest version of Firefox – Why?
Steam’s updated voice-chat is like SILK
Google plugs Flash Player vulnerability in Chrome
According to figures released by the EU’s statistics office, about one third of European PC users have contracted a PC virus of some kind in the year 2010. The numbers that were released to highlight Internet Safety Day also show Ireland and Austria as the safest of the 30 countries surveyed.
At the other end of the spectrum is Bulgaria with a whopping 58% infection rate; with Slovakia, Hungary, Italy and Estonia not far behind. According to the survey most people infected had some kind of security software installed, which means they either lapsed in keeping it up-to-date, or failed to keep their OS up-to-date (or both).
Percentages of phishing scams were also revealed. About 3% of countires within the 27 EU states felt financial loss due to being scammed with some kind of phishing attack.
The EU statistics office wasn’t putting a positive spin on any of this news, stating that the numbers are likely to be much higher as the infections only include people who realised they were infected.
Microsoft is all too aware of this problem. They have been providing free antivirus software since late 2009 and it’s available to all Windows users on XP Service Pack 2 and upward (Vista, Windows 7 etc). It’s simple to install and runs seamlessly in the background. So you don’t even have the excuse that antivirus software is too expensive for your budget. MSE provides free, regular updates and best of all is made by the some company that constructed your OS.
In related news, Microsoft announced yesterday that the first service pack for Window 7 will be released to the public on the 22nd of February. The service pack will mostly be a round-up of previously released security updates. So if you’re planning on building a PC for someone any time soon or re-installing your OS it would be worth having that handy.
Paperback: Windows 7 Secrets
How to clone your Windows 7 DVD onto a thumb drive
5 Tips For A Healthier Gaming PC
Windows 7 Home Premium, price-drop on Amazon
Microsoft’s free antivirus solution has been with us for well over a year now, but only in recent months have the Windows team begun rolling it out via Windows Update. You can now download MSE from your ‘optional’ updates, in case you were unaware.
It’s a welcome addition to Windows Update, giving basic virus protection for anyone using a legit copy of Windows; no fees, no subscriptions, regular updates and best of all, it runs very unobtrusively in the background.
To download simply click on Windows Update from your start menu, then run the check for updates button.
Then simply browse to the optional updates and select ‘Microsoft Security Essentials’ from the list.
5 Tips For A Healthier Gaming PC