Unified Extensible Firmware Interface is what the acronym stands for but what is it and how will it affect us? UEFI is similar to BIOS in that runs the POST at startup and also allows the operating system to boot, but that is where the similarities end. On top of that UEFI also has many additional features such as secure boot and some networking capability, but this is not all that it’s limited to.
EFI the precursor to UEFI was developed by Intel as a replacement for BIOS. It has been used by some motherboard manufacturers but it never took off as Intel had hoped it would. Eventually the project was given to a consortium of companies who have now taken it and developed it further and it has since been referred to as UEFI. This replacement for BIOS has a fancier looking GUI and has added the ability to use a mouse and keyboard rather than just a keyboard for navigation. Additionally it is touting a faster boot time since it is capable of addressing more data at a time than BIOS can.
One of the more controversial features has been secure boot. Windows 8 will be one of the first operating systems to really use this feature and many are concerned that it will block others from installing older versions of Windows or Linux. The reason for this concern is that Microsoft will be using a digital signature in the operating system that UEFI looks for prior to allowing the operating system to boot. If a rootkit is present the signature will then change thus UEFI will block it from running. Microsoft is mandating that if any OEM’s want to put a “Made for Windows 8” sticker on their computers then secure boot needs to be enabled. With this system in place Linux and older versions of Windows will not be able to be installed. Microsoft has since released a statement saying that the ability to turn off secure boot will be available in UEFI.
I think that UEFI has some good features that definitely prove that it can be a successor to BIOS, but what are your thoughts on this? If you’re trying to decide between UEFI and BIOS for computers at your company, then give us a call and let us assist you.
Take that Google!
Looks like we could have a Browser OS war on our hands. And isn't that what we all dreamed about when we were kids? My Firefox just took down your Safari! ...Or something like that.
About a month ago, Microsoft announced a 'Gazelle' browser project that eerily parallels the Google Chrome OS that was just announced. They don't see it as an outright Internet Explorer replacement, but rather something else.
All signs are pointing to a small, but capable, operating system that boots right into a steroid using browser. Where would Grandmom save her spreadsheets to? Most people (myself included) forgot about Googles 'GDrive'. It's a place where you can save your files to the 'cloud'. Does that make any sense? Imagine yourself using an external hard-drive....that's invisible. That's the cloud.
It's technology like that which make this whole idea more believable.
Pretty soon Grandmom will be able to load up her spreadsheets on her tablet that's rocking Gazelle OS....Or something.
Ok, that headline is just plain silly. And even if it weren't, I'd more than likely be out of a job and filling out applications at the Apple Store.
Anywho, Google finally announced last night "Google Chrome OS", their own open source, lightweight operating system. Their goal looks to be 'speed, simplicity and security". Who wouldn't want that? Throw in an apple pie and my grandmom may sign up. Google says that this project is separate from Android, their phone OS, but one can assume similarities.
Since most of the Google Apps run inside of a browser interface anyway, I can only guess that they will in fact make a very tiny OS. Right now, you can load up any browser and edit documents, read emails, and create calendar appointments. It would make sense that their OS revolves around their Chrome browser.
I hate posing questions at the end of papers and then answering, but I'm going to do it anyway. What does this mean for Windows? If anything, this is going to benefit everyone. Competition breeds innovation and no company is going to sit around while a young gun takes their market share away. The Chrome browser that came out last year already has 30 million downloads, so this isn't going to be some flash in the pan. The Google Chrome OS will drop in the second half of 2010 first on netbooks, and then everywhere else.
Mark it down in your iPhones Calendar App.