Skip to comments.Microsoft Readies 'A1' Security Subscription Service for its anti-spyware and anti-virus solutions.
Posted on 01/05/2005 10:38:14 AM PST by Happy2BMe
|Tuesday, January 04, 2005|
|Microsoft Readies 'A1' Security Subscription Service
|Microsoft's anti-virus/anti-spyware strategy is taking shape. Sources say Redmond's prepping a fee-based bundle, which could go beta soon.|
| Publicly, Microsoft continues to be cagey about packaging and pricing plans for its anti-spyware and anti-virus solutions. But privately, Microsoft has begun informing partners of its plans for a security subscription service code-named "A1," according to developers who requested anonymity.
Microsoft bought anti-virus vendor GeCAD in the summer of 2003, and anti-spyware maker Giant Company Software last month. As to how it plans to deliver these technologies, Microsoft has declined to give specifics. How/when/if it will repackage GeCAD's technology remains uncertain. Ditto for Giant's although according to the Windows enthusiast site Neowin, Microsoft is expected to field its first anti-spyware beta based on Giant's technology this week. Neowin said the anti-spyware beta is code-named "Atlanta."
Microsoft officials have said the company is planning to make some form of its anti-spyware product available as a free tool. But that isn't the ultimate plan, partner sources said.
Microsoft is currently expecting to field its A1 anti-spyware/anti-virus bundle in the form of a renewable subscription service, the same way a number of other security vendors do, sources said. The service will allow users to keep current on the code needed to combat ever-changing viruses, worms, spybots and the like.
Some elements of A1 are likely to be built directly into future versions of Windows, according to partners. Specifically, some of the security-management functionality, such as the security-health-validation technology which Microsoft officials discussed last year, would likely be bundled into Windows itself, partners said.
The degree to which A1 will draw from learnings from Microsoft's "PC Satisfaction Trial," which the company conducted between 2003 and early 2004, is uncertain. PC Sat was designed to test Microsoft and third-party anti-virus, firewall, backup and PC-health-monitoring services. Sources said that Microsoft was testing whether these kinds of security services when provided as hosted, managed services would appeal to typically less-security-savvy small-business and consumer customers. Microsoft officials have declined to comment on the trial.
Microsoft officials also declined to comment on A1. Amy Carroll, director of Microsoft's security business and technology unit said: "We have not finalized the productization plans, and beyond that, we can't talk about the company's future anti-spyware/anti-virus solutions."
One partner source said he could see parallels between Microsoft's A1 and KraftFood's A1 steak sauce.
"A1 is a steak sauce that is a collection of different spices and seasoning such as malt vinegar, dates, mango chutney, and orange marmalade. This suite of seasonings is designed to hide flaws in the primary meat product, and is usually served separate from the steak," said the partner. "Interestingly enough, according to the (internal) A1 web site, the product has a 12-month shelf life, kind of like Microsoft's A1 will. After that, you'll have to sign up for a new one."
The best analogy I've heard in a long time...
Kraft will sue for copyright infringement.
Then, just when I was about to actually PAY for the product so that I could continue using it, Microsoft bought them out. Right now the product is in limbo, you can't register it, pay for it, or whatever. Sure, I'll be happy to get the product for FREE (because it is so good and free is even better) but right now I can't use the product until Microsoft officially releases it.
MS Business Plan
(1) Develop insecure operating system
(2) Sell security subscriptions
Why don't they incroporate the A1 into the designs before they release the product and prevent the need for a subscription service?
Sounds like job security to me
The Cosa Nostra pioneered this method of doing business
bump! ping! bump! ping!
Microsoft tech ping
Youse 'as gotta nice computa der. I'te hate ta seez sumptin unfortunate 'appin toz it. Capeesh?
Microsoft: Buy rather than create.
Bill had ONE good idea about 15 years ago...Windows.
Thanks for the Ping
Hah! He stole that one too (from Apple, who got it from Xerox).
Youse 'as gotta nice computa der. I'te hate ta seez sumptin unfortunate 'appin toz it..
sort of like racketeering where the mob offers to "protect" you from thugs picking a defective lock to your house, where of course the mob is them that designed, made, and sold you the lock and made sure the purchase agreement absolved them of all blame...
Bill had ONE good idea about 15 years ago...Windows.
And your point is....?
I guess you're going to stop shopping at your favorite Department Store because they "buy rather than create" their products.
While not perfect, Microsoft has been a leader in bringing powerful office automation tools and OS options to the typical users desktop. I don't hold Microsoft blameless for all of the problems surrounding them, but I recognize the value of what they've added to computing.
So, Bill Gates is not a super-programmer and he's more about marketing, packaging, bundling, and vision than he is about the rest of it all. He's a far cry more successful than you will ever be at what he does. Isn't capitalism great?
wrong IMHO - his one good idea was EULA
That one wasn't even his. They bought it, just like everything else they sell. On one hand, since MS did not develop these programs themselves, they should be pretty good to start with, until MS boogers them up a year or two down the road. I have decided to use only one MS program: Windows XP. I bought MS Money 2005 back in Nov. What a dog! I'm not so upset about the $49, it's the hours of my life trying to make it work that I want back! I still use Outlook until another email client that is PPC compatible comes out, but that's it. The less MS you use, the fewer problems you will have.
LOL. An instant classic.
Has Bill cleared 'dis wit da boyce on da East Coast?
Is the SpyBot guy updating his definitions? I haven't gotten any updates lately.
I believe that if MS actually goes through with the subscription service, you can expect LOTS of law suits against MS.
It's one thing for MS to ship flawed software, allowing others to "fix" the flaws. Maybe "flaw" is an overstatement. How about "exploitable."
But if MS begins SELLING a service that will fix the explotiable flaws in their own product, which, by the way, you only license from them, I have a feeling that there are going to be LOTS of law suits against MS, and they'll have one hell of a time trying to get a favorable jury.
Try "Spywareblaster." Unlike Adaware and Spybot S & D, Spywareblaster does not remove spyware/adware/malware from your system, but rather, prevents the crap from loading in the first place provided you keep the program up to date. The program is freeware, and therefore, there is no excuse for not using it.
Symantec, Ewido and Pivx already sell software through an annual subscription basis. I'm due to renew my Norton Anti-Virus next month.
It won't run on PPC though. As far as I know, outlook is the only email client compatible on my Ipaq PDA.
Third party software vendors won't like it that Microsoft is taking away their income while delivering an inferior product. Yes, I do expect more lawsuits in the works.
Yes it is updated. Make sure you've got version 1.3. 1.2 was abandoned some time ago.
wait 'till you see what they raised it to.
I predict 2005 will be a good year for linux.
My last definitions for v1.3 are dated 12/17/04, but I'm sure a newer one must already be available for downloading.
It's definitely NOT my favorite dept store. It's the only store in town.
I haven't gotten any in months. I'm about ready to ditch it myself.
Microsoft is not the only OS or Office Automation vendor. There are several. Heck, some of the stuff is free. Knock yourself out.
I just tried; zippo. I had heard that he was going to stop doing it.
Is this like selling automobiles with "optional" doors and seats?
Leave a secuirty hole by intent or sloppyness and then chare extra? Talk about using monopoly power.
I heard that too. You can bet some corporate pig is going to pick it up, and charge for the software and updates.
Well, unfortunately for me, my company decides such things.
No doubt; If that is the case, I'll buy Spy Sweeper; I couldn't believe how many things it found that Ad-Ware and SpyBot missed.
OH puhleeze....... I've had enough problems with IE and spyware targeted to IE to ward me off of ever using IE again.
As they should. I can't see good enough reason for a large company to use anything other than Microsoft for Office Automation or for their OS on the common desktop.
As true operating systems go, it is very weak!!!
You've hit paydirt, MarkL.
If Micro$oft were not so greedy and sold their OS at a price point that was within reach of the average PC user, they would be ten times larger and 1,000 times more popular than they are now.
$29 for XP Home and $49 for XP Pro would reap a financial harvest of mind boggling proportions for the MicroFortunes. A pittance of the extra revenue (it would be tens of millions by then) could then go back into developing a more secure operating system.
All those software engineers, so little common sense.
So, don't buy it. Personally, the suite of features included in Windows XP and its ease of use impresses the heck out of me. I spent $99 on it and I believe I got my money's worth. It certainly works well in my home where my wife and kids can navigate it and use it without much assistance. At work it functions well too. And, yes, I also use different flavors of Unix and Linux (desktop and server) but they are really only suited for specific tasks and services, not for a primary desktop or office automation.
Gotta keep that revenue stream flowing, eh?
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