While Steve Ballmer was busy taking solace in the fact that 94 out of 100 computer purchases are Windows PCs, Google updated its employee computer policy to explicitly exclude Windows machines due to security concerns. Whereas new employees were once given a choice between Linux, Windows, or Mac OS, Windows is now effectively out of the equation.
“We’re not doing any more Windows. It is a security effort,” said one Google employee. “Many people have been moved away from [Windows] PCs, mostly towards Mac OS, following the China hacking attacks,” said another.
New hires are now given the option of using Apple’s Mac computers or PCs running the Linux operating system. “Linux is open source and we feel good about it,” said one employee. “Microsoft we don’t feel so good about.”
… The move created mild discontent among some Google employees, appreciative of the choice in operating systems granted to them – an unusual feature in large companies. But many employees were relieved they could still use Macs and Linux. “It would have made more people upset if they banned Macs rather than Windows,” he added.
Google employees with an affinity for Windows will now need special permission from CIO Ben Fried if they want a new Windows machine. Interestingly, Fried’s bio on Google notes that he was a Mac developer as well as a Windows 1.0 programmer. What a mix.