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Old 27 February 2013, 06:36 AM
Troberg Troberg is offline
Join Date: 04 November 2005
Location: Borlänge, Sweden
Posts: 11,580

Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Not so. It may not be "illegal" (i.e., a violation of criminal law) for computer retailers to remove the operating systems from bundled computers, but it's a violation of their contract with the OEMs and they are therefore not at liberty to do so.
Perhaps not from bundled computers, but there is nothing preventing them from selling computers not bundled with Microsoft stuff. Most countries have laws specifically forbidding such contracts as they are not considered fair competition.

Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Actually, they'll tell you that the licensing terms are an agreement between you and the OEM that distributes the software, so you need to contact the OEM to obtain a refund.
Actually, I've done that dance, and after being bounced around for a while, it was Microsoft that reimbursed me (at about 1/10 of shelf values, but still...).

I also did check with the consumer ombudsman, and she said that I was entitled to a full refund, but it would probably cost me much more than I would gain to drag it through the legal system, so I didn't bother.

Originally Posted by snopes View Post
Nobody's forcing you to buy a Windows-bundled computer. If you don't want to pay for Microsoft products, buy a computer that doesn't come with them.
Actually, it's not that simple. Most manufacturers make crappy computers (especially laptops, which I can't build myself). If I want a good laptop, I'm pretty much limited to ASUS, high end HP and Toshiba. Of these, only ASUS sells without Windows, and only on the low end machines.

So, if you are not prepared to nag the sales person a great deal, you will get Windows, like it or not.

Luckily, there are still a few dealers which sells never used second hand laptops (usually from companies that has ordered too many). There, I can buy good laptops without having to get the Microsoft crap, and at a good price as well.


The thing is, that this is damaging on a grand scale. The entire capitalist model depends on the customer making informed decisions. By taking away the practical ability to make a decision at all, indeed, even hiding the fact that there is a decision that can be made, the model collapse. Quality and price is no longer guaranteed by the rules of a fair competition, as there is no longer any incentive to improve products or pricing, just to fence in market shares by signing deals that affect the customers way up over the head of the customers in the production chain.

Development slows down or stalls, as money is easier to obtain by paperwork. Customers does not benefit from that.

We already see the results, with Microsoft not even trying to improve their products, just adding a new layer of paint and some useless features in each release.

Also, there is no incentive for them to cooperate with other products, in fact, they do everything they can to create their own "Microsoft World". Once again, this is bad for customers, bad for technology and only benefits Microsoft.

I really, really hope that the proposition that is underway in the EU parliament, which would make it illegal to sell computers with an OS passes. That would offer a true choice for the consumer, and by showing the consumer that there is a choice, would level the playfield.
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