China: 15 percent of Windows OS to be replaced per year

Beijing – China has decided to replace 15% of the Windows operating systems on its government computers with domestic operating systems each year, hoping to have made a significant impact by 2020, reports Duowei News, a media outlet operated by overseas Chinese, citing the Chinese-language Beijing Times.

Ni Guangnan, a researcher from the Chinese Academy of Engineering, was cited as the source of the report. The report is said to have won approval from the leadership of the government who have instructed government organs to implement it, the Beijing Times said.

Sources said alternative operating systems have not yet been finalized, however a timetable is in place for the large scale replacement, which will extend to servers, chips and software.

The China Banking Regulatory Commission (CBRC) has informed banks to adopt domestic operating systems, said Zhang Long, president of Yunnan Sipu Investment Group, who developed the SPGnux OS.

The Windows 8 operating system has been banned by the Chinese government, according to a notice on its official procurement website in May. The notice said Windows 8 is no longer permitted to be installed on central government computers.

Windows 8 has a function that scans users’ computers regularly, which makes monitoring of information easier. In other words, Windows systems exert a lot of control over users’ PCs, Ni Guangnan said.

Cyber security has been an issue of contention between China and the US. China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said the smartphone dominance of Google’s Android system was out of control in March 2013. Windows 8 was banned in May 2014 and after Microsoft was investigated for monopolistic behavior, raising tensions between the two.

Duowei stated that these moves demonstrate China’s elevation of cyber security to an issue of national security. Source: China Daily