Surface RT Does Not Have Ethernet. Oh wait. No. Oh Wait?

Subject: General Tech, Networking, Systems, Mobile | August 6, 2013 - 01:18 AM |
Tagged: Surface RT, microsoft

It has been a month, to the day, since I picked on Windows RT for being more locked down than a Nintendo console. Devices, including Microsoft's own Surface RT, did not allow USB to Ethernet dongles for wired internet access. Compared to the Wii, that is quite pathetic.

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Certain users have been able to use adapters until apparently, according to Mary Jo Foley, Microsoft helped ensure they are broke as intended. They are also demanding hardware manufacturers, who otherwise could support the operating system, to withhold drivers from their customers.

If you were one of those people who managed to get an Ethernet dongle working with your ARM-based Surface RT, you've probably since discovered that it no longer works.

I did not see any confirmation of Microsoft disabling any drivers so, bare in mind, I might have just misunderstood the above quote. Apparently, though, the issue arises from Connected Standby conflicts with those dongles.

But that does not mean Microsoft will continue to prevent Ethernet dongles.

According to the same article from Mary Jo Foley, Microsoft is quietly working on a fix for the issue. They are currently working, along with hardware manufacturers, on creating devices which can support the instant-on, instant-off feature. The cynic in me, of course, wonders if Microsoft will be first to market with the, albeit rumored, corrected peripheral.

Personally, I feel that a consumer who purchases one of your devices should be allowed to install hardware understanding the tradeoff. It would not be too difficult to pop up a warning, "Your USB device is not compatible with Connected Standby; the feature will resume when your accessory is removed".

Just another advantage for truly personal PCs.

Source: ZDNet
August 6, 2013 | 01:58 AM - Posted by windwalker

Yeah, that's exactly what we need: more obscure warnings and error messages.
Maybe you should switch to Linux. They have plenty of those and all the rope you nee … eh … I mean all the freedom you crave.

August 6, 2013 | 11:23 AM - Posted by Scott Michaud

(The snarky response is...)

There's a lot of rope in Windows too, but they don't let you tie it around your neck... because it's already tied around your limbs.

(In all seriousness...)

I am a proponent of anti-censorship, that was why I enjoyed Windows. They are in the process of restricting that for everyone because the big market of people who barely use a computer did hang themselves.

So I am, strongly, considering a switch to Linux.

Think of it this way: what if Microsoft gets told to restrict things. What if a Government tells them to block encryption software from Windows Store (especially in foreign countries)? Won't exist on Windows RT. What if ratings board, afraid of complaints from crazies, blocks mentioning same-sex relationships in games... again? If it doesn't run in Internet Explorer, good bye!

It is not even Microsoft that *really* concerns me. It's the crazies, with strong pressure over them, who will come once the infrastructure is set.

August 6, 2013 | 05:02 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I have switched to Linux and Chromebook. Why do people punish themselves with Microsoft products? Even the X-Box One is a disaster.

August 6, 2013 | 06:32 AM - Posted by Terminashunator (not verified)

Since practically everything can be web-based now, the OS means absolutely nothing.

August 6, 2013 | 05:37 AM - Posted by Gunbuster

Tinfoil hat much? Maybe Microsoft has a finite amount of resources, and running down a problem with an Ethernet dongle that a fraction of people bought for a product that didn't sell very well in the first-place is not at the top of the list?

August 6, 2013 | 09:34 AM - Posted by mAxius

i hate to say this but with apple all departments are working in unity thus their products work vs microsoft they don't care about problems its a company where every division is out to screw over the others in the most harmful way possible.

August 6, 2013 | 01:20 PM - Posted by Tim (not verified)

Pathetic...I never use wireless...then again , I`d never waste money on a tablet.

August 6, 2013 | 01:20 PM - Posted by Tim (not verified)

Cat 6 all the way !

August 6, 2013 | 07:17 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I like how MS calls VGA/DVI and Ethernet ports "legacy"

its like all devices need to be anti ports and wireless everything..... wireless has its place, its just not for "everything"

February 4, 2014 | 03:47 AM - Posted by Tupult (not verified)

I was initially out of idea about what the actual problem was about. Later on I understood that the main problem is that the issue arises from Connected Standby conflicts with those dongles. Anyways thanks a lot for the share.

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