Windows 8 Machines with ARM Chips Will Not Boot Linux or Other OSes

January 17, 2012, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

We are well aware as to how the open source platforms have dented the business potential of a company like Microsoft. But recent news from the company indicates that they are still trying to tackle the issue in their own unique way.

There are just some months for the new Windows 8 to roll out, as per the information around Microsoft circles. Reports are emerging that the systems, which will ship with Windows 8 as a preloaded OS, will have some specific hardware specifications, which will make it difficult for the users to boot other OS like Linux.

A process called UEFI secure booting will reportedly prevent booting operating systems not signed by a trusted certificate authority.

Microsoft has already urged hardware makers who are in the run to clinch the deal, to enable the secure boot technology to be eligible for ‘Designed for Windows 8’ logo.

A possible solution for the issue was that the hardware manufactures give an option, via a firmware set up, for the users to disable the secure boot, allowing them to boot other OS also. Another possibility is that Linux would also start giving the users a signed version of the operating systems.

However, a recently unearthed document from Microsoft shows that the game will be possible only in machines with an Intel chip, but not on those machines with ARM chips.

As per the document, Microsoft asserts that ARM systems running on Windows 8 should not give the custom mode to the user. It means users will not be able to disable the secure boot. Well, if Microsoft is that adamant, we hope the users will find some way to bypass that restriction. Don’t you think so?

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