Windows 8 PCs will come with Microsoft’s UEFI (Unified Extensible Firmware Interface) Secure Boot. This “feature” will make it much harder to boot Linux or other operating systems. Canonical, Ubuntu Linux’s parent company, is going to take a new approach to address this problem.
When Canonical first announced its plan on dealing with Microsoft’s Secure Boot in the next version of Ubuntu, 12.10, it ran into objections from the Fedora Linux developers and the Free Software Foundation (FSF). In an ideal world, the FSF wants PC vendors to not let users be locked in by Microsoft’s Secure Boot.
Failing that, the FSF dislikes both Fedora and Ubuntu’s plans on how to deal with Secure Boot because both require that a user trust in a Microsoft-generated key. With Ubuntu, the FSF also opposed Ubuntu dropping the Grub 2 bootloader “on Secure Boot systems, in favor of another bootloader.” A bootloader is the program that lets you boot your system and, if you have multiple operating systems, choose which one to boot.