Google Quitting Windows - InformationWeek

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6/1/2010
02:05 PM
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Google Quitting Windows

Worries about Windows security have prompted Google to move employees to other operating systems.

After its office in China was hacked as a result of social engineering trickery and a flaw in Internet Explorer 6 last year, Google has decided to dump Windows.

The Financial Times on Monday reported that, according to several Google employees, Windows is on its way out in the company as a result of security concerns.

"Getting a new Windows machine now requires CIO approval," a Google employee told the Financial Times.




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Employees can still choose to use computers running either Linux or Mac OS X.

Google's effort to wean users from Windows may also have something to do with its plan to introduce its own Web-centric operating system, Chrome OS, toward the end of the year. The appeal of Chrome OS will be significantly diminished if no one at Google chooses to use it. Thus, creating some impetus for migration seems prudent.

Google declined to comment. "We're always working to improve the efficiency of our business, but we don't comment on specific operational matters," said a Google spokesperson via e-mail.

Microsoft also declined to comment.

However, Frank X. Shaw, head of corporate communications for Microsoft, mocked the Financial Times report in a series of sarcastic Twitter posts. In one tweet, he called the article "bad reporting" without explaining the supposed error.

In another, he wrote, "news flash: Google boards up all windows in its global HQ, citing security concerns. Must credit FT."

He also tweeted, "Something's not right w/the FT.com Google-dumps-Windows story. The China hack involved IE6 & employee behavior, not Win…"

Windows remains the dominant operating system for personal computers worldwide, with a market share of 91.28% as of June 1, 2010, according to NetApplications.

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