December 18, 2004
Bill Gates giveth, and Bill Gates taketh away

Do you think that somewhere on the org chart in Redmond, WA, there's a position for Director of Ironic Developments at Microsoft?

Microsoft Corp. disclosed plans Thursday to offer frustrated users of its Windows software new tools within 30 days to remove spyware programs secretly running on computers. But it might cost extra in coming months.

In a shift from past practice, the world's largest software manufacturer said it may charge consumers for future versions of the new protective technology, which Microsoft acquired by buying a small New York software firm. Terms of the sale of Giant Company Software Inc. weren't disclosed.


Microsoft, whose Windows operating systems have often been criticized for lax security, traditionally has given consumers at no charge separate programs to improve security. It also has increasingly built other protective tools, such as firewall software, into Windows to repel hackers.

It sure is a good thing that the many security vulnerabilities in Windows and Internet Explorer have led to this moneymaking opportunity for them, isn't it? I just love that kind of synchronicity. There's still a kink or two to be worked out, but I have faith in their abilities to make things happen.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on December 18, 2004 to Technology, science, and math | TrackBack

You didn't hear the really GOOD bit. MS purchased Giant for their anti-spyware tools. It was only after the purchase was finalized that MS discovered Giant's anti-spyware software was already exclusively licensed to another company.

Posted by: Charles E on December 19, 2004 12:11 AM

Oh.. I didn't see that last link about the "kink or two"... I guess you DID hear the really good bit. Nevermind.

Posted by: Charles E on December 19, 2004 12:12 AM

For a spyware removal tool that will likely remain free, I've long recommended Lavasoft's Ad-Aware.

Posted by: Mathwiz on December 23, 2004 1:49 PM