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Microsoft to Allow PC Makers to Downgrade to XP

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the going-back-in-time dept.

Microsoft 311

mytrip pointed out a News.com story about a new Microsoft program to allow PC makers to downgrade from Vista to XP if they so choose. They're still pushing the new version of Windows very hard, but the option now exists for PC resellers to offer the now venerable OS. This is especially interesting as the article points out that OEM licenses for XP officially run out at the end of January. "Hewlett-Packard also started a program in August for many of its business models. 'For business desktops, workstations and select business notebooks and tablet PCs, customers can configure their systems to include the XP Pro restore disc for little or no charge,' HP spokeswoman Tiffany Smith said in an e-mail. She said it was too soon to gauge how high customer interest has been. 'Since we've only been offering (it) for about a month, we don't really have anything to share on demand.' A Microsoft representative confirmed there were some changes made over the summer to the options computer makers have with respect to XP, but the representative was not immediately able to elaborate on those changes."

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"Allow"? (0)

jcr (53032) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705021)

Hasn't Dell been doing this ever since Vista came out?

-jcr

Not the whole time (5, Informative)

localroger (258128) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705109)

Originally, Dell switched entirely to Vista just like everyone else. Then after a month or two they strong-armed M$ into letting them offer XP to their business customers. (I would love to have been a fly on the wall listening in to the conversation that got that concession out of M$.) This is just M$ offering the same thing to other vendors, who are probably losing a lot of business to people who want XP and can only get it from Dell.

Re:Not the whole time (1, Troll)

Ferzerp (83619) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705305)

This is flat out incorrect.

As a business customer, XP has never been unavailable to me.

Furthermore, Vista (other than basic) OEM has always had downgrade rights as part of the license.

Re:Not the whole time (0, Redundant)

Ferzerp (83619) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705339)

And yes, I mean through Dell.

Re:Not the whole time (4, Informative)

crymeph0 (682581) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705953)

It depended on the PC model. Where I work, we have a small business account with Dell. We could get XP on higher-end workstations we use for 3-D modeling and the like, but we had to get Vista on the lower-end PCs we use on the factory floor, until Dell relented a month or so after Vista hit. I know our IT guy sent some very strongly worded emails to our Dell sales rep asking for XP on all computers, and I'm sure they were getting the same from many of their business customers.

Re:Not the whole time (1)

hurfy (735314) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705465)

At least the local shop has no problem building me a XP box. New laptop last week was offered with either Vista-sucky edition or XP-home or an upgrade to XP-Pro. Salesman laptop died and i got a new one built in 4 hrs :)

Even comes with a windows CD. Of course the multiple choice OS means they usually load one up by hand so some settings can be a bit inconsistent, but i change most of it anyways.

Re:Not the whole time (2, Informative)

nategoose (1004564) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705497)

According to my reading of the article this actually seemed to be about OEMs enabling customers to "downgrade" to XP after purchasing a system with Vista business or ultimate by providing the customer with a copy of XP to install. If so it'd be good for customers because they could see which works out for them and then eventually move to Vista totally if it improves to meet their needs.

Re:Not the whole time (2, Interesting)

Propaganda13 (312548) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705973)

It's good for Microsoft because people spent the money on business or ultimate then in April 2009 support runs out. The person will either need to change to Vista for support or pay for additional support.

Re:Not the whole time (4, Interesting)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706089)

(I would love to have been a fly on the wall listening in to the conversation that got that concession out of M$.) This is just M$ offering the same thing to other vendors, who are probably losing a lot of business to people who want XP and can only get it from Dell.

Me too :(

You know, many experts predicted people will skip Vista and go for the next Windows (if for any at all). And those aren't the kinda experts which damn the latest Windows version each time as a sport.

I'm a Microsoft fanboy, but I also feel my stomach turning upside down seeing what they did with Vista as a whole.

And the fact this happened means people actively reject Vista en masse, for Microsoft this means they will have to do big time correction on their Vista projected sales (which included all previously guaranteed OEM sales). One more step into confirming this "people will skip Vista" theory.

Restrictive, Confusing, the Usual. (1)

Erris (531066) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706355)

This is just M$ offering the same thing to other vendors, who are probably losing a lot of business to people who want XP and can only get it from Dell.

I thought business users with "Software Assurance" had "downgrad rights" all along, so that this only really has an effect on SMB and the vendors themselves - people hate Vista and sales are down all around where people have no choice. Oh wait, the downgrade rights were just theoretical, not practical:

Under Microsoft's licensing terms for Vista, buyers of Vista Business and Vista Ultimate Edition have always had the right to downgrade to XP, but in practice this could be challenging.

Anyway, this little consession seems extremely limited. It only applies to the most outrageously expensive versions of Vista and XP comes as a disk, not installed most if not all the time:

The program applies only to Windows Vista Business and Ultimate versions, and it is up to PC makers to decide how, if at all, they want to make XP available. [as if they were not demanding this!] ... In June, Microsoft changed its practices to allow computer makers that sell pre-activated Vista machines to order Windows XP discs that could be included inside the box with PCs, or shipped to customers without requiring additional activation. ... "customers can configure their systems to include the XP Pro restore disc for little or no charge," HP

The terms are confusing but my guess is that they are trying to drum up interest and sales, not really make things easier.

Re:"Allow"? (1)

eepok (545733) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705459)

No. It took them a while to muscle MS into allowing them to sell XP. Even then, it's only on 1 home laptop option and 3 gaming machines.

Those ordering for small business have to eat the cost of additionally buying a Windows XP client license in addition to the Vista cost of buying a Dell.

http://www.dell.com/content/topics/segtopic.aspx/winxp_inspn?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs [dell.com]

No pretty linkage for you!

*BSD is Dying (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705033)

Fact: *BSD is dead

Re:*BSD is Dying (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705301)

I hear Netcraft confirmed it.

Article has that backwards. (5, Funny)

Tatarize (682683) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705037)

Users are permitted to upgrade from Vista to XP.

See, fixed.

Re:Article has that backwards. (1, Redundant)

heathaze (1151519) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705077)

Users are advised to upgrade from Vista to XP. I think I caught that one on time :)

Re:Article has that backwards. (1)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705625)

They love to self-declare what is and is not good for the customer. Remember 'Microsoft Works'?

Re:Article has that backwards. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705793)

Yeah, and I can't see why they would get that backwards. It's not like this is Soviet Russia.

Downgrade? (4, Insightful)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705051)

Why do they insist on calling it a downgrade?

Re:Downgrade? (2, Informative)

Nitroadict (1005509) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705237)

This is further proof, if most did not suspect or pondered, imo, that Vista was just released to be released (see: rushed out) due to complications in getting whatever was originally supposed to what the next OS,which "7" is supposed to be: something new, something improved (one hopes :cross fingers:). However, I've stopped bitching at Vista and got a dual-boot of Xp/Ubuntu, so I apologize for getting mildly redundant there... I will probably eat my words when the 2nd service pack comes out, as I'm sure vista will be worked out better by then, but Vista has disappointed me with it's inherent DRM and resource hungry requirements, and random reorganization of stuff compared to XP. :\. They should, while they are at, publicly admit the existence (and perhaps promote) Windows Fundamentals For Legacy PC (essentially XP only it uses considerably less ram and resources). I recently put that baby on my old laptop (Compaq Presario; Anthlon Barton w/ 256 mb RAM) and the thing flies in comparison to the default XP install I had, and was even faster then the custom EUE XP I had installed previously (more stripped down). While it would counter intuitve for M$ to cater to such users of older pc's (therefore they forgo the purchase of more up to date pc's with Vista installed or Vista capable, whatever that means), I think it would be a smart move overall as it might convert a few people who are stuck using Windows 2k on their older laptops/desktops. Also, for some of the remaining ignorant, general users, this might be useful in letting them know just because Vista (or more generally "the new windows") isn't working, that they need not panic and just downgrade. Some PR spin could prevent some of this from M$ admitting, gasp, a few problems with Vista ;D

Re:Downgrade? (4, Insightful)

Jerry (6400) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705435)

the next OS,which "7" is supposed to be: something new, something improved (one hopes :cross fingers:).


When driving down a hiway at night Deer are sometimes caught in your headlights. They stand, transfixed, as you approach. You have to honk your horn and slow down to give them a chance to get out of their trance and leave the road.

So is it with some folks who, when MS releases PR memos about vaporware, fix their vision on this "future" OS, freezing themselves out of any current improvements. Just what MS wants.

Windows 7??? (3, Funny)

commodoresloat (172735) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705811)

I thought this was a joke and then looked it up and it's actually true: The post-Vista version of Windows in development has been dubbed "Windows 7 [osnews.com] . So it's really true -- the Windows OS is finally catching up to that revolutionary MacOS from 1991, System 7 [wikipedia.org] . Windows users will finally be able to take advantage of such innovations as QuickDraw and Balloon Help [wikipedia.org] Congratulations Microsoft!!

Re:Downgrade? (2, Interesting)

suv4x4 (956391) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706369)

So is it with some folks who, when MS releases PR memos about vaporware, fix their vision on this "future" OS, freezing themselves out of any current improvements. Just what MS wants.

I like your analog, but I think the reaction you see is more likely because people prefer to stick to XP until something better than XP and Vista comes along (hopefully 7).

The only thing that could impress those people, would be faster release of XP SP3, since the sheer amount of patches required after reinstall is incredible.

I'm in that crowd, and while I'm watching how they go with Vista SP1, I have to say I've pretty much given up on this OS release as a whole.

Windows 7 will be the product that decides the future of Microsoft. They simply can't afford two crappy releases in a row.

Re:Downgrade? (4, Insightful)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705381)

Same reason they use words like "Genuine Advantage", or "doubleplusungood".

Re:Downgrade? (3, Interesting)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705559)

You are talking about the warm fuzzy feeling of words like 'Trusted Computing'?

Re:Downgrade? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705835)

Hey fuck face! Where's my damn beautiful sunset background? Slashdot still looks like a four-assed monkey dingleberry sandwich.

Re:Downgrade? (1)

Loadmaster (720754) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705637)

The obvious answer is they want people to buy Vista. The truth is that it should be called cross-grade. I had Win XP Pro and *graded to Vista Ultimate. I like Vista; haven't had any problems with it, but it's just not worth the money for the average user. I've been asked by a couple friends what's better about it. Answer: I don't know. It has a few flashy graphic additions. Oh, it works better with my 360 but still doesn't work with Xvid (rumored fall update). This is what Microsoft's new tag line for Vista should be:

Vista: It's New. . .er! Now with even more of the same but in Mac style!

One can only assume the exclamation marks will make people buy.

Swi

Re:Downgrade? (1)

Kjella (173770) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705677)

Because the version number is lower, if there had been one (ok so it's 5.x something if you check)? No, the latest version isn't always the greatest one so if say Ubuntu Gutsy give you problems you'd downgrade from Ubuntu 7.10 to Ubuntu 7.04. It's only a very tired and old slashdotism to mock Microsoft over what's perfectly sensible use of the word.

Because you're still actually paying for Vista (1)

schwaang (667808) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706307)

If I understood TFA correctly.

[But I get your point.]

Downgrade? (4, Insightful)

CaptainPatent (1087643) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705073)

I'll downgrade to XP in the same way I'll "downgrade" to a first-class airline ticket or a supersized meal.

On the other hand though, it is Microsoft making a correct move by giving consumers what they actually want while keeping the marketing in line with their "forward thinking."

Re:Downgrade? (4, Insightful)

rucs_hack (784150) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705545)

The problem is that Vista isn't being seen as a useful upgrade by microsofts biggest customer, the business world. They don't want it.

In a few years they will, just like they avoided XP till it had been around for a while. Its not that they don't like it, they just don't feel they can rely on it yet.
A new OS is a risk, even if it comes from the major player in the OS world. Yup, people here may not like it, but windows is the standard bearer, Linux is still a minority everywhere but serverspace.

Home users get the fallout from this. The simple fact is that vista would be a big improvement for most home users who are in the 'don't care, so long as my pc works' class. People who don't want it are usually reacting to the negative press and not realising that most of this doesn't really apply to them, vista will do everything they want, since what they want is a pc that will browse the web and play games. XP does this too, but the security model in XP is a disaster, Vista at least improves on it a bit. Linux fans may be angered by this, doesn't stop it being true.

I don't want vista either, I'd rather stick with XP, but I'll be buying it next year, several copies in fact. So will almost everyone on slashdot, unless they're really linux only bods. Hardly anyone falls into that group at the moment. I like my games, and Linux just doesn't do that well.

Re:Downgrade? (4, Informative)

Sylver Dragon (445237) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705929)

I like my games, and Linux just doesn't do that well.

I'd be careful on Vista as well, then. My personal addiction has been World of Warcraft for some time, and when I upgraded to Vista on my home system, my frame-rates tanked. My system is not top of the line, nor close even. But it was able to run WoW on OK graphics settings, and get playable frame-rates anywhere but the worst of places, while I was running XP. After a few months of dealing with the performance hit, I downgraded to XP. My frame-rates are back to reasonable, at higher graphics settings than I had been using in Vista (which I had lowered to make the game playable) and higher frame-rates.
Now, this probably has more to do with the drivers for my graphics card (6600GT) than the OS itself, but it is an issue which will keep me from upgrading.

Re:Downgrade? (2, Interesting)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706015)

I will most likely not buy Vista, even though I am not a Linux-only bod. Economics and (some) respect for the law play pretty big roles in my choice of OS.

Re:Downgrade? (2, Insightful)

Wowsers (1151731) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706133)

The simple fact is that vista would be a big improvement for most home users who are in the 'don't care, so long as my pc works' class.

After playing around with Vista on a friends new highly spec'd machine, I would say most home users are in the 'don't care it runs slow' class. They don't know how fast their new machines could be running (they can't/don't compare a similar machine running something like XP or Linux), Vista's turned their high spec machine into something resembled to running through tar.

Not quite... (5, Insightful)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706405)

Business users can see that Vista will:

a) Cost them millions.

b) Most likely cause a lot of incompatibility problems.

c) Not increase their productivity one bit even when they finally have it all working.

It's a lose-lose proposition for them.

buggy! (3, Funny)

grumpyman (849537) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705125)

that OEM licenses for XP officially run out at the end of January.


See, I know MS develops buggy code. Even their license generator stop working!

I just setup Vista for a friend (4, Interesting)

canuck57 (662392) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705205)

I understand the plight. After setting up Vista for the first time the other night I could not believe the amount of GUI changes in Vista. Especially when it came up on a cable modem PPPoE. Took me an hour to figure it out, it though we had a DSL dial up. Don't look for properties any more in the OS, they are now calling it "Settings" and is where the help used to be on many screens.

People would have less learning UI if they loaded Fedora 7 or RHat.

Sure glad I bought my last PC when I did. Still had XP on it with a promise of a free upgrade. Have the new disks. Just never applied the upgrade. Will not be applying any time soon either.

Re:I just setup Vista for a friend (1)

ACS Solver (1068112) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705337)

And keep in mind that MS actually dropped the idea of a complete GUI overhaul in Vista. Chances are they'll still do such an overhaul for Vienna.

I wonder how the users will respond. On the one hand, your average user takes a lot of time to adapt to a complete GUI change. On the other hand, sometimes these changes are really good (think Windows 3.1 -> Windows 95).

Re:I just setup Vista for a friend (1)

Sylver Dragon (445237) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706017)

My personal rule of thumb for dealing with the Vista GUI has been, expect to have to dig through one more layer than normal to get anything done. If you haven't yet, try changing folder permissions in Vista. I have a bad habit of doing the following:
Open Properties, go to security tab, click edit, click allow on the UAC pop-up, try to make a change and realize that the permission is inherited, close the edit box, click advanced, click allow on the UAC pop-up, uncheck inherit, click copy, close the advanced box because I really do just want to add modify and not all of the sub-permissions directly, click edit, click allow on the UAC pop-up, and finally, make my change.
In XP, there is no edit button to make changes, and the need to exit the edit dialog, go the advanced dialog and then come back to the edit dialog; is gone. Sure, if I picked up on the fact that the check boxes were greyed and so inerited, I'd save myself the headache; I don't see why it's necessary in the first place. Let me do my edits and ask me to allow admin rights when I attempt to write them back.

Coming Soon.. (1)

carlvlad (942493) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705209)

Microsoft pushing Vista for OLPC..

XP is insufficient, Vista is ridiculous (4, Interesting)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705211)

I need to buy a new system (current motherboard got damaged, might as well upgrade), and I've been weighing my options. Vista is simply not an option at all. XP Pro 64-bit is orphaned, with virtually nonexistent driver support. XP is 32-bit, and I already was running Win2k with 4GB of RAM (well, as much as it will use of that) and need to grow.

After all these years of Windows desktop and Linux here & there on servers and VMs, I'm going to finally make the jump the Linux desktop, VMWare'ing Windows where I need it. I don't play PC games anymore (besides minesweeper), I'm going to get a quad CPU with 8GB of RAM, and Microsoft simply isn't offering anything viable for that configuration.

Re:XP is insufficient, Vista is ridiculous (1)

Curate (783077) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705669)

Why is Vista "simply not an option at all"? If you're getting a quad CPU with 8GB, Vista will run extremely well on that, probably faster than XP.

Re:XP is insufficient, Vista is ridiculous (5, Informative)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705877)

  • I don't care if Vista will run "extremely well", it will take up far more resources than any other option, and I'm running very CPU and memory intensive applications. I'm getting a powerful machine to run my applications, not just to run a lumbering OS.
  • I have a bunch of peripherals and don't want to risk driver problems.
  • I do not want to be encumbered with DRM and other "trusted computing" issues with basic system configuration, troubleshooting, and software development, nor in my media recording, archives, and playback.
  • I run a lot of not-very-mainstream software that doesn't explicitly support Vista yet, but does support Win32 and Linux.
  • In the little that I've played around with doing simple things on Vista on store display boxes, it has either crashed or thrown security exceptions at me. I think it reflects a lot of the negative responses I've seen here from Vista users here and elsewhere as consistent usability, stability, and access problems.

Well (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20706111)

have a happy stay in Linux land you faggot. Don't let the door hit you on the way out.

You have apps to run? WTF runs on Linux? NOTHING!

You'll regret it, and I hope you'll be properly humbled when you come back with your tail between your legs crawling back to the Windows community askin for forgiveness.

Linux fag!

Re:XP is insufficient, Vista is ridiculous (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706161)

Yes - but other operating systems are better suited since it's considered server hardware in a lot of cases. MS do a server OS, but any linux distro that has a recent enough kernel to support the chipsets would virtually fly on the things just as it does on twin dual cores. Ultimately it comes down to the applications you use.

Personally I'd rather run something that doesn't use vast quantities of memory and cpu power on eyecandy and background tasks best left until 4am when the user is asleep - if you have that much computing power you usually have it for a reason and want to be able to use as much of it as possible on whatever grunty application needs it.

Re:XP is insufficient, Vista is ridiculous (2, Informative)

calebt3 (1098475) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706075)

I recommend VirtualBox.

Venerable? (5, Funny)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705229)

Sorry, I know a lot of people think it's better than Vista, but when did XP become venerable?? Is there some secret meaning for that word that I don't know?

Re:Venerable? (2, Informative)

Flipao (903929) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705315)

Is there some secret meaning for that word that I don't know?
In the Catholic Church's Latin rite, venerable is the title of a person who has been posthumously declared "heroic in virtue" [Wikipedia.org]

I think he means XP was a great OS before it died, maybe his computer blew up or something.

Re:Venerable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705697)

I think they're using the term in the sense of "impressive by reason of age".

Re:Venerable? (1)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705375)

Made me raise eyebrows too. When did the whole "to hell with XP, I'll stick to Win2k" thing vanished ? Remember ? XP has nasty anti-piracy features that can lock your PC, mandatory upgrades that you can not refuse and the license gives MS the right to erase any file on your disk. It also says you must send a kidney of your firstborn to Mr. B. G. Redmond, Seattle.

Re:Venerable? (1)

deprecated (86120) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705563)

Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.

Re:Venerable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705797)

My language word for 'venerable' is often synonymous with 'very, very old', especially, when used ironically.

Re:Venerable? (2, Informative)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706051)

Common English usage is for something that's old, but honorable or respected because of (in part) that age. Something to be venerated. XP may be old, but the rest...

Re:Venerable? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20706003)

Sorry, I know a lot of people think it's better than Vista, but when did XP become venerable?? Is there some secret meaning for that word that I don't know?
After using the GUI gave me VD. Oh, venerable not venereal.

Re:Venerable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20706265)

I suspect someone's spell checker spit out the wrong suggestion for "vulnerable".

Re:Venerable? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20706427)

> ...but when did XP become venerable?

Whenever my computer gets a virus. On the internets one can gets lots of venerable diseases...

o_O

640k (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705245)

Sucky os cannot run on 640k.

So very different... (1)

NoName Studios (917186) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705251)

I look at Windows Vista and realize how vastly different it looks from Windows XP. The same goes to my customers that I speak with, they are confused as well with all of the graphical and placement changes. Windows XP started a very solid trend on what the look of Windows is, but Vista shattered that.

Take a look at Mac OS X. The interface is pretty much the same for more than ten years. There have been improvements, but the basic functionality has stayed the same with some graphical upgrades.

Re:So very different... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705349)

OS X? That means Apple hardware. Ewww. No thanks. When my wife's Macbook failed (again, this time out of waranty), we chucked it and picked up a Thinkpad and put Ubuntu on it. Yeah, we paid for yet another copy of Windows we won't ever use, but the Thinkpad is a far better machine than any MacBook.

Re:So very different... (1)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705379)

If Vista is going to be 'Windows' final interface' than any change is permitted.

If the change implies that Windows is going to lose the final; that is nice too.

Re:So very different... (1)

Fox_1 (128616) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705509)

Here's a little bit of craziness, my Vista doesn't look like Vista, it doesn't even look like XP either, it looks like the good old fashioned plain Jane NT/95/98 world. Simple icons, plain start bar, no fancy window effects. All you have to do is turn off the eye candy and select the right visual options.

Yeah, who'd of thought that the Prettiness of the OS doesn't improve it's functionality? On that note - having killed a lot of unnecessary junk in vista I'm not quite getting the same performance to power ratio as my XP box (which has been similarly tweaked). But I have twice the power so I don't feel the pinch so much.

This isn't meant as a defence of the bloated OS, I'm just pointing out that with proper configuration Vista can be a very functional OS, not a bizarre confusing visual experience that chews your processor up.

Re:So very different... (1)

miffo.swe (547642) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705649)

If you have to get down and dirty and disable the only real change in a new OS i dont really understand why you would buy it. Especially if it comes with sluggish performance and no improvement in security to boot. I have tried Vista and find it abysmal compared to XP and i do not like XP one bit. Its "Windows ME 2007", same old crap with new fancy wardrobe and brand spanking new concrete boots.

Re:So very different... (2, Interesting)

Topherbyte (747078) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705915)

Take a look at Mac OS X. The interface is pretty much the same for more than ten years.

THAT, plus the BSD underpinnings, is what made me finally take the [pricey] Apple plunge.

Apple, and the beautifully designed OS X, let me DO WHAT I WANT with the computer. And this is neglecting to mention AppleCare, a decent insurance policy for the hardware if I've ever seen one, which has already paid for itself after one fizzled iBook motherboard.

MS products OTOH, and I'm not a rabid MS-hater for all concerned, just do not get it -- Vista only allows you to do what MS thinks is best. Can someone please explain to me why that is considered an upgrade?

Sorry Microsoft. Since I have professional sway, and strongly advise my family and friends on which hardware to buy, you're just SOL.

a problem with vista? (1)

mseidl (828824) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705255)

If end users are requesting that they get XP instead of Vista? What does that tell you? When so many people ask for XP over Vista that dell starts to offer it. Let me clarify this: "Don't know nothing" end users are asking for something else. That just speaks volumes for the resistance against Vista.

Re:a problem with vista? (1)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705451)

I remember a HUGE billboard where Microsoft asks us something about if we are continuing to be living in the stone age.

This was about new office software. You saw dinosaurs at the office on the billboard.

I think they were not sure enough about their stuff to pull such insult to 'stayers' with Vista.

Re:a problem with vista? (1)

Kadin2048 (468275) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705471)

I was standing at the customer-service desk of a computer store yesterday (MicroCenter, a slightly more clueful big-box store than CompUSA or its ilk) and a guy walked up to the desk next to me. Basically, the guy wanted to know "what the hell was wrong with his computer." Some sales drone had sold him on a Vista laptop, and he got it home before discovering that it wasn't what he expected a computer to look or feel like. Long story short, the guy ended up returning the unit and exchanging it for one of the two models they still stock that come preinstalled with Vista.

I certainly hope someone in their corporate hierarchy takes note and realizes that stuffing Vista down users' throats isn't a good idea. Even clueless users know when they're being sold a bill of goods, and in some ways their cluelessness makes them less able to deal with the changes in Vista than experienced users (who by and large *could* deal with Vista, but don't want to have to).

Re:a problem with vista? (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705567)

Some sales drone had sold him on a Vista laptop, and he got it home before discovering that it wasn't what he expected a computer to look or feel like. Long story short, the guy ended up returning the unit and exchanging it for one of the two models they still stock that come preinstalled with Vista.

"The next day, the guy came back, even more angry..."

Reality check (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705879)

Microsoft does not care what is demanded, they don't care what your or millions want. They are the supply and demand. not you, you're simply a consumer. If they want you to use vista, you will, one way or another.

Go to Mac? the macintosh doesnt have many games, neither does linux. Why do you think microsoft is so keen on taking over the gaming industry? That's right, so that you're stuck with them. You can barely find an OEM that will offer full time support for most non-windows systems, and actually understand, and there being a guarantee that they'll still be around in 5 years.

We're all doomed to use vista for something. I'm going to have to use it to get used to it for my line of work.
the only positive thing is that a UI change may start requiring people to use their brains and figure shit out for once. Which is also scary for me because it threatens my line of work. :(

So... (0, Redundant)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705303)

All my base will not belong to you, Mr. Gates. That's good news.

I'm still not going to buy a Vista machine.

Re:So... (1)

Flipao (903929) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705405)

I'm still not going to buy a Vista machine.
Funny I remember similar things being said about Windows 95. Vista will be shoved down our throats whether we like it or not.

Re:So... (1)

ackthpt (218170) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705665)

I'm still not going to buy a Vista machine.
Funny I remember similar things being said about Windows 95. Vista will be shoved down our throats whether we like it or not.

My boss bought me a vista machine for work. It's gathering dust nicely.

Oh, I'll put it to use eventually, but likely after the first major patch level

Re:So... (1)

gujo-odori (473191) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705855)

By some people, maybe, but I got Windows 95 on my first Pentium machine, and it was superior in every way to the Windows 3.11 on the machine it replaced. Vista hasn't shown us that they sort of night-and-day difference between itself and XP. Yes, Vista will be shoved down our throats eventually, but it will be a very long time before the Vista installed base is >= the XP installed base.

Re:So... (1)

dbIII (701233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706305)

Everything else available at the time was superior to Windows 3.11. Also Win95 was a huge upgrade to DOS and the graphical shell on top - Vista is not a large upgrade to NT but there are a lot of changes in the graphical shell. A lot of us care a bit about graphical shells but not enough to put up with Vista: if the applications cannot run as quickly on the same hardware then it is just not good enough. Currently many of the applications that run on Vista still run on win2k and XP - also some applications do not run reliably on Vista.

Re:So... (1)

martin_henry (1032656) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705689)

Ditto. I'll buy a linux pre-loaded laptop [linuxcertified.com] before I get Vista.

I think (1)

Joseph1337 (1146047) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705311)

the users (even of Windows) aren`t ready for the new limita... I mean features*ducks from flying chair*

An open letter to Microsoft: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20705407)

I like Windows 2K. I like Windows XP. Ok, maybe "like" is too strong a word, but it's a decent operating system and I can live with the problems. I'll be purchasing a new computer soon; it won't be running Vista. I've considered buying something with XP (most online pc builders still offer it as an option), but vista is not where I want to go today or tomorrow. It's a dead end. So I've decided to buy a Macintosh. The day Apple releases Leopard, I'll be ordering a new Macintosh. Games... I guess I'll stick to the wii.

A.C.

Re:An open letter to Microsoft: (1)

Tribbin (565963) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706289)

"... but vista is not where I want to go today or tomorrow. It's a dead end."

If only

Who would have thought? (1)

decriptor (762523) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705439)

Its interesting that Microsoft might have got several things right in windows XP and have out done themselves. That or maybe they just waited way to long to have the whole world just switch out everything. People tend to hate change, and maybe similar to some not wanting to use linux because of change are not interested in changing to Vista. Maybe this is the chance for Linux and mac to break further into the market. Or people just don't want to spend $2000 on a receptionists computer just so that they can chat, browse, and view docs. (disclaimer: And not I don't think that's all they do)

News? (1, Informative)

Barny (103770) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705505)

How the hell is this news, downgrade rights have been available for consumers of ultimate and business since launch, it is how they get so many corporate sales of vista (since they ignore the vista part and just load xp pro as always.

I had one of the senior MS sales people for Australia recommend for our store to buy a 1 user "mass license" and then use that for installing downgrade rights, this is an option that has been open to OEMers for quite a while, its just they are finally waking up and realising that not everyone wants the latest POS from Microsoft.

Re:News? (3, Insightful)

miffo.swe (547642) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705585)

The news is that computers will be sold with XP installed. Thats a huge difference to getting a recovery disc and doing it yourself.

Not mature enough yet... (1)

headkase (533448) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705575)

It boils down to the fact that Vista is simply not mature enough yet. I run XP Pro and am happy with it and I have no intentions of switching to Vista anytime soon. Now in a year or two when it's up to service pack 2 AND you can run DOSBox inside of XPBox AND software compatibilities are a thing of the past because Vista is the target not XP then I'll upgrade.
And this old XP machine will probably become an Ubuntu box then.

Re:Not mature enough yet... (3, Funny)

gad_zuki! (70830) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706031)

It boils down to the fact that XP is simply not mature enough yet. I run 2000 Pro and am happy with it and I have no intentions of switching to XP anytime soon. Now in a year or two when it's up to service pack 4 AND you can run DOSBox AND software compatibilities are a thing of the past because XP is the target not 2000 then I'll upgrade.
And this old 2000 machine will probably become a Mandrake box then.

The Appropriate Successor to Windows 98 SE? (1)

eepok (545733) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705581)

Anyone else foresee the re-release of Vista sometime in the future? I mean, it's failed with businesses (no one in their right minds is installing it for their lay corporate workers). It's failed with enthusiasts. Why not just change the UI back to what made Windows "Windows", make some resource requirement adjustments, work with major companies on driver support for a a year, and release it like an entirely new OS. It worked before. And we, for the most part, loved 98SE.

Re:The Appropriate Successor to Windows 98 SE? (1, Redundant)

White Flame (1074973) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705641)

Why not just change the UI back to what made Windows "Windows", make some resource requirement adjustments, work with major companies on driver support for a a year, and release it like an entirely new OS.

You're missing the most critical part: Get rid of the broken security, DRM, and Trusted Computing misfeatures.

I have no real problems with Vista... (3, Interesting)

stubear (130454) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705651)

I waited an extra month or two to purchase my new Dell XPS M2010 just to get Vista since it was on the horizon and as far as I could tell all my hardware/software worked for the most part or new drivers were already in beta for one of my Epson printers. I would have not waited six months for Vista, nor do I have any plans to go out and purchase it for any of my other machines, but I can't say I'm unhappy that I waited a month to get it on my new-ish system. The Vista Media Center is EXCELLENT and in my opinion is unmatched by any other software or dedicated box. Microsoft could dominate the PVR market if they released a Zune TV device that basically booted straight into WMC without the Windows UI anywhere to be seen. Let me sync recorded shows to a Zune 2.0 device and Apple's hold on the handheld media device market would begin to wane. Some of the adjustments to Explorer and the Start menu are nice and improve the usefulness of both a little bit. My biggest problems with Vista aren't Microsoft's doing, they are the third party developers who dragged their feet even knowing full well that Vista was coming out and they knew what they had to do to make their software compatible. There really is little Microsoft can do to get developers to use user accounts properly (which have been a apart of NT from the start, Vista is the first time Microsoft has enforced their use). I really don't see the need for anyone other than corporate customers to downgrade to XP.

Re:I have no real problems with Vista... (0, Troll)

miffo.swe (547642) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705751)

Anyone who does serios work that demands CPU power do not want to toss those cycles out the window. People who buys a new computer to play games wants better speed, resolution and non-flicker gaming experience. Why give all those precious cycles away for nothing? I have run Vista and compared to Linux Compiz 3D its a sluggish snail that cant do half of what Compiz can. Compiz plays videos on four different workspaces in see thru mode on a spinning cube without using much CPU. Vista can do pretty much nothing and behaive like a snail in a wheelchair and square wheels. Microsoft has really dropped the ball on this and i dont think its fixable in a servicepack without braking all sorts of things. Application support is bas enough as it is right now.

Re:I have no real problems with Vista... (3, Insightful)

dbIII (701233) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706231)

Microsoft could dominate the PVR market

The really bizzare thing is that linux does instead. I have to put it down to licence costs and slow development on the part of MS - an updated Windows CE could be doing the job if they had put in enough effort.

OS version revision (4, Interesting)

thatskinnyguy (1129515) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705673)

This just goes to show you that Joe Consumer out there will use whatever he is comfortable with. I know several non-technically-inclined people who took advantage of an "OS version revision (not a downgrade necessarily)" to XP just because they don't like how slow their new computers were running and they didn't like the San Quintenesque security of Vista.

I also know several people who still use Windows 98 on their home machines just because they like it. Sure they can't get new Windows Updates and finding new software is damn near impossible but they like it.

On the other hand, I do know a handful of people who like Vista and actually prefer it over XP. Not for the security, but for the "WOW". Of course their systems are superlative in every respect to performance.

This "use what you like" thing may be why Mac OSs do so well. I mean, what really has changed from UI, performance and security perspectives that can be easily seen since OS 10.0?

Change is a bitch. I know. I know. Get off my lawn.

"S"P3 (1)

distantbody (852269) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705883)

So what are the chances that this refocusing will means that the friendly people at Microsoft kindly force down peoples throats "security updates" or "new features" that are the hallmark of Vista's 'digital-content protection comes before basic OS functionality' program to either:

A: subtly cripple XP in the name of security to make Vista less unappealing; or

B: Bring XP 'up-to-date' with Vista's most important 'features' so they can get their new DRM platform either way?

Vista = New Coke? (4, Funny)

Brett Buck (811747) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705891)

Or Xp = Slurm Classic?

      Brett

Making Vista viable (2, Insightful)

NemoinSpace (1118137) | more than 6 years ago | (#20705989)

1. Ultimate, Premium, Basic, Business, Enterprise... versioning rip-off. If Xp Home vs.Pro didn't piss enough people off?
2. Licensing - A 1x transfer? Businesses should stay away just for that reason alone.
3. Resource inflation. The amount of hardware you have to throw at Vista is ridiculous.
4. UAC. The epitomy of the Are you sure? box.
5. WinFS? ZFS?
6. The changes in the windows interface since 98 is schizophrenic
I like the search implementation. I would guess if you bought ME you'll buy Vista. Otherwise there's a _LOT_ of work that needs to be done to convince me (and my customers I support).

It wouldn't surprise if the OEM's want it (1)

MLCT (1148749) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706001)

Not so much because of "huge" business demand - businesses would probably be happy to sit on their hands for a while and let vista mature - but the OEM's, HP et all., will not want businesses to sit on their hands (i.e. not spend money), and if a "Vista only" machine is forcing buyers to be more cautious when ordering 100 new machines then HP will want XP back in the catalogue to make the sale a bit more likely.

This is total nonsense - MS *HAD* TO DO IT!! (4, Interesting)

jkrise (535370) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706069)

Last evening, I met with the IT chief of a large transnational bank, for whom we develop Enterprise code. I asked him about what software platforms are envisaged in the long run, and the process behind evaluation. He said, "Basically we have a Red-Amber-Green colour scheme for software."

Under this scheme, Vista is Red, so is IE7, ActiveX controls, Visual Basic and Visual Basic .Net; I was surprised to learn that Visual Studio as a whole is 'Amber'! SuSE and RedHat Linux are both green, so is PHP, RubyonRails, Eclipse, Websphere etc. Interestingly, he said the IT staff of several banks get together and discuss matters affecting common issues like this.

So I guess it's the OEMs who are FORCED TO OFFER XP and XP-compatible hardware, drivers and support to their biggest customers. This isn't some gift of charity from His Billness or the new acting Chair-man from Microsoft. Nobody sane would like to willingly downgrade to Vista - simple as that.

I'm a Vista Power User (1, Interesting)

LM741N (258038) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706135)

OOh, I figured out how to burn bootable dvd and cd iso's without any 3rd party programs.

Seriously, I just consider it another incremental upgrade. I haven't touched B itlocker and the "Ultimate" apps are vaporware. Its not such a bad OS. Bill Gates scared away all the corporate customers with the "Wow factor" crap. He should have just concentrated on useful new features like the ability to get a commmand window at any folder. IIS people might have some interest in things like that.

And I have not had any problems running Office 2003 and other MS apps that don't require drivers. In fact today, I just got service pack 3 for Office 2003.

Re:I'm a Vista Power User (3, Informative)

allcar (1111567) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706351)

He should have just concentrated on useful new features like the ability to get a commmand window at any folder. If that's the most compelling reason to upgrade, it's not surprising that things aren't going too well for Vista. I'm sure that was a "PowerToy" ages ago.

Re:I'm a Vista Power User (2, Informative)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706361)

> He should have just concentrated on useful new features like the ability to get a commmand window at any folder.

Agreed.

In the meantime, snag 4NT.

Command Prompt -> Explorer
alias x=start explorer /e,"%_CWD"

Explorer -> Command Prompt
http://www.codinghorror.com/blog/files/OpenCommandWindowHere.zip [codinghorror.com]

My experience with Windows Vista (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20706219)

I had been using beta releases of Windows Vista off and on, with plenty of issues which are expected from a beta OS. Now, I am running Windows Vista on all home (Ultimate) and office (Enterprise)machines including laptops and media centers. There were a lot of issues early on, but as of now, I can't think of a single thing that I did on XP and can't do on Vista better. And keeping in mind that Windows Vista is directly derived from Windows Server 2003 codebase, with a lot of cleanup of old XP code, it is the best Windows OS out there right now. There are still some performance issues specific to some hardware, but SP1 is going to fix most of it anyway. And since SP1 and Windows Server 2008 are being released together, you can easily expect server class quality for SP1. I have been a user of Windows since version 3.1 and I have never had any spyware or virus on any of my machines running any OS of Windows NT family. I think the main window of opportunity that Apple and Linux had was within first few months of the release of Windows Vista. Apparently, they didn't make good use of it. I sometimes boot into Ubuntu installed on an external USB drive. But there is not much productive work that one can do on Linux. That's the repeating trend I have seen with my Linux adventures. I spend hours getting it to work with my hardware, and then pretty much don't find much use of it. I do a lot of audio/video work, and there simply isn't any professional software for that on Linux. Granted Windows has limitations, but it has a huge software and hardware compatibility base and it is the upto the user to make best use of it. And if you ever get nostalgic about the good old shell, try the new Windows PowerShell. OS X is a good alternative to Windows, but when I can configure a quad-core box with 4GB memory and 1TB storage under $1500 which blazes through my pro audio software with Windows Vista, I don't see any reason why I should spend twice as much (if not more) on a Mac Pro. It is good to see Linux trying to catch up with Windows on the desktop and I think that it is good for people with limited desktop requirements. But the Windows platform is just getting stronger and Windows Vista will soon have as much of the market share as Windows XP, if not more.

Re:My experience with Windows Vista (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20706303)

since you work with media, have you tried playing HD video? how badly does it get down rezzed by DRM?

if you use audio a lot, how did that network throttling-while-playing-audio bug affect you?

sure, vista is the best windows yet, but can you remind again me of all those things you can do in vista that you can't do in XP?

i'm looking forward to SP1, it'll be great to see such a 100% improvement of something that's already perfect!

What's so good about XP? (1)

allcar (1111567) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706235)

People are starting to get all nostalgic about XP. This is weird. It's still the same shitty OS it was 12 months ago. What's next - DOS 3.3?

To put it more constructively than some /.ers (1)

Toreo asesino (951231) | more than 6 years ago | (#20706317)

XP has been several years in the wild, Vista, not even one.

XP is a solid platform, even if it isn't as secure by design, it still works and can be secured with the right knowledge (i.e don't do stuff as 'root')

Of course Microsoft will offer the more stable platform is customers really want it. Who is dumb enough to really think Vista is yet as mature as XP yet - and even with the same level of support, even now? Either way, the licence fees are the same and go to the same place, so guess what, Microsoft still win. Nothing to see here, move along please.
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