Windows

Microsoft responds to Save XP petitition

TechRepublic blogger Andy Moon reported a few weeks ago about an online petition started by InfoWorld to "save" Windows XP. Andy asked whether such a move is even necessary. Well, it appears that the over 75,000 users who have signed the petition to date think so.

TechRepublic blogger Andy Moon reported a few weeks ago about an online petition started by InfoWorld to "save" Windows XP. Andy asked whether such a move is even necessary. Well, it appears that the over 75,000 users who have signed the petition to date think so.

As a result of the InfoWorld petition and support for XP from various quarters, Microsoft spoke to ComputerWorld on this matter.

Excerpt from ComputerWorld:

A Microsoft spokesperson in the US told Computerworld: "We're aware of it, but are listening first and foremost to feedback we hear from partners and customers about what makes sense based on their needs. That's what informed our decision to extend the availability of XP initially, and what will continue to guide us."

Microsoft gave its assurance that Windows will not disappear overnight after the June cutoff. It reiterates that Windows XP will be sold through June 30, 2008, by OEMs. System builders will be able to sell XP through January of 2009.

When I first read about this, I couldn't help but think that Microsoft is merely providing lip service to the matter. After all, the majority of those who signed the petition are Microsoft's customers!

Still, with Vista SP1 coming in mid-March, and evidence that it does provide a much improved experience, perhaps there will be less of a need for XP to be "saved." Regardless, it does appear that many businesses are not yet ready for the transition to Vista.

Do you think Microsoft will further extend XP's availability?

About

Paul Mah is a writer and blogger who lives in Singapore, where he has worked for a number of years in various capacities within the IT industry. Paul enjoys tinkering with tech gadgets, smartphones, and networking devices.

53 comments
archief
archief

What makes a company an OEM or a System Builder ? I'm not clear what the difference is. What are Dell, HP, etc ? They build systems but are routinely referred to as OEMs. Who are the "system builders" that will still be providing XP ? And what version and licensing terms will they be selling ?

rocscb
rocscb

Please wake up and smell the coffee guys. Microsoft will release another service pack for Vista and thats it...boom xp is dead....I took a bold decision and are busy with the LINUX implementation!!!!! Ubuntu is the BOMB....Thanks Mr Shuttleworth!!!!

jrich
jrich

I hope I get to skip Vista, much like I skipped ME. Just need to hold out for anouther year, or two. I have a stand-alone license for XP Professional (not the disposable license that comes with the PC when you purchase it from a retailer). When my personal computer breaks down, I will build another and just reinstall XP Pro on it.

JohnMcGrew
JohnMcGrew

We tend to think of Windows as an operating system. But in reality, to Microsoft, Windows is really more of a "content delivery system", designed primarily as a vehicle to support a massive marketplace for applications. For 3rd parties to exploit this marketplace, they must buy servers, CALs, and development tools, mostly from Microsoft. Those people are Microsoft's real customers. (Except they call them "partners") So when Microsoft says that they are "listening first and foremost to feedback we hear from partners and customers about what makes sense based on their needs", that doesn't mean us. (As they see it, our job is to buy whatever they push out the door and make it work as best we can, while paying them for support calls and new certifications) Who they really mean is everyone who's queued up to buy the next round of development tools to exploit all of the wonderful perceived features in Vista (or to get around them). If we were the customers, they'd be selling an efficient, stable, secure, and easy to manage operating system. Now that we've stalled at accepting Vista, perhaps Microsoft will start respecting us again. Notice the subtle stories that have been popping up over the last few weeks about "Windows 7". Microsoft knows they've got a big problem.

jakelly404
jakelly404

Two things. 1) MS should keep XP at least as a fall back option for Vista users who are unhappy with their setup. 2) Where can I find the petition? Thanks, regards, James Kelly.

ted
ted

I do not think that they should. Windows Vista has driven the computer desktop experience to a new level. I had never considered operating a 4 core system until I installed Vista. With new technology comes new advances! Why should we stick behind and expect our old boxes to perform what the new software can do. Did you run your stupid i386 with Windows 95 or 98? No! That was because you got new technology. It spurred the new development of what we have today. If we did not need faster processors, would we be using DOS still? That really did do what everyone wanted, but now more people can use the computer, and have a good experience. I hope Microsoft does not extend the license.

paulmah
paulmah

So the question here would be: Do you think Microsoft will extend XP?s availability when all is said and done?

JCitizen
JCitizen

I take cheap bare bones or separate Original Equipment Manufacture hardware and put it together for my clients; then I install "OEM" software on it that I support instead of Microsoft. I do recommend non OEM software for my clients who have critical software issues that may slow their business cycle, and where software support is more important than saving a few bucks. I call this "retail box" software that is fully supported by Microsoft through their own tech support site. I always by the supported software for my own units because my clients don't have time for me to be trouble shooting my own software glitches. I've never seen anyone who couldn't get free support for update issues however; they just have to email MS and a phone call is forth coming.

HAL 9000
HAL 9000

HP, Dell and the like are System Builders who use OEM M$ Product. A System Builder is technically anyone who builds a system from parts and supplies these to paying customers. OEM Software in this case is any Software installed by the System Builder. This is Cheaper and not supported by the Software maker but the System Builder. So places like HP, Dell and so on are system Builders who use OEM M$ Product to install on their computers that they build. Col

JCitizen
JCitizen

and why I don't think Microsoft knows what a "customer" is anymore. Sure sounds like you hit the nail on the head.

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

The only mistake you made is you forgot to include the major hardware vendors as customers.

Antagonist
Antagonist

That is the best description of Microsoft's business model I have ever heard. I couldn't agree more.

JohnMcGrew
JohnMcGrew

...that the "code bloat" is growing much faster than computer performance. I have yet to see a brand-new Vista machine perform anywhere near as fast as my 3-year old XP machine. 30+ seconds just to log into a domain? What the hell is that about? Yes, of course computers are far more capable than they were 10+ years ago. And yet, I find it sad to think that it took my Apple ][e running CP/M 1/4th the time to boot up (off of floppies, no less) and be ready to work than it takes my current Windows machine.

me.cool.and.chewynet9
me.cool.and.chewynet9

Vista hogs everything memory, etc. XP you need 512mb memory to run and maybe 400mhz CPU, and there's nothing really in Vista that pops. All it did was make XP flasher, 2000 to XP the difference. XP to Vista all you notice is the annoy pop-ups to confirm everything.

Antagonist
Antagonist

Honestly, it's the other way around. New OSes are written for newer hardware. However, Microsoft did the opposite and that is why vista is not being adopted like they had hoped. It just plain doesn't work right yet. The poster who said they have a lot of work to do is right. The days of pawning half finished OSes on an unsuspecting public are over. And to answer your question, yes: many of us used windows98 with newer hardware before moving to windowsXP because it ran MUCH MUCH MUCH faster and at the time there was no incentive to spend the money to upgrade. After several years, they got XP mostly right (as far as a windows OS goes anyway) and people upgraded. Now people have more choices than just Windows Asta la Vista. There is MAC OSX, a crapload of really good Linux distributions, BeOS, and others. Vista looks pretty and if you are just into hardcare DirectX games then yes, you might want to upgrade. If however you want to do many of the things you have always done with XP on vista, you will be $hit out of luck. Lots of things won't run at all, many apps don't run properly, drivers are not worked out, networking has changed so drastically that it is a problem now and not to mention at least 100 other reasons not to get Vista yet. Eventually, yes. It might be great but it is far from that now. So no, I won't be upgrading to vista just so I can play the newest games. If I want to do that I will buy a 360.

mhmmd.faisal
mhmmd.faisal

So far XP is the most stable and feature packed OS by Microsoft. If this keeps up MS revenue will go down and so will anciliaries' (after all what else will you do with 1GB PCI express, 1024MB RAM, 160GB HDD and so on.........). MS will only continue XP as long as their back aint against the wall, after that XP will go bye bye.

lmaciel
lmaciel

I think that Win XP is a good system, and Microsoft needs to attend customers apeal. {{}} L?do

apalix
apalix

I've run Vista on a 1.8 GHz dual core machine with 2GB ram. It is much slower than my 2.8 GHz XP machine with 2GB. Vista takes at least 1GB just to run. It has the potential of a great operating system but needs to grow. Besides, we should have a choice. It doesn't take that much for Microsoft to maintain it. But it would cut into their Vista sales.

lsatenstein9
lsatenstein9

At some point, the free XP updates will end and there will be a subscription for the patches. That will provide some extra time to allow existing hardware to become truly obsolete. In addition, we know that software companies will want to develop once for all platforms. That means that sometime in the future, new software will not run on XP. I think that all this will happen within 2 years.

PhilippeV
PhilippeV

With Microsoft wanting to stop delivering XP within *only* 3 months after the expected release of Vista SP1 (still unproven that it will be ready, given the huge difficulties in making the upgrade completely failsafe so that your PC can immediately crash or constantly need rebooting after it), Microsoft is really insulting its clients: without enough time to evaluate Vista and decide to make the transition and start a porting and deployment project, Microsoft rejects the arguments of its most serious supporters: organizations. Of course, when you buy a brand new PC for your home, it does not matter much if it will support your past software, given tghat most users simply have very basic needs, and just want to be able to browse the web or play and organize their medias. what they want is a PC that just works as soon as they press the power button, so Vista SP1 will be preinstalled for most hime users that don't want to invest time in the upgrade, and then hate to loose everything if it fails. In reality, most users on existing PCs at home will not upgrade their PC to Vista if they are alreadysatisfied with XP; and given the difficulties that already happen in Vista SP1, they will not be convinced, until Microsoft releases a new version of Vista completely debugged and integrating the latest service packs. The past time for the seek of working drivers and debugging the PC is over: now PCs are for the crowd, and msot PC users are not tech savvy. If this really sucks, they may well turn to simply buying a Sony PS3 that just runs its own firmware, features more things in terms of media playing, is even more performant than a PC for computing: may be Sony could release its own Linux distrib for the PS3 as part of the bundle, with most essential apps for home users already installed, including something similar to the costly M$ Media Center. Really the PS3 at $400 looks really awesome. It can replace the PC almost everywhere, it works just well out of the box, runs the best medias, and does not remove any freedom of use. It also features the best games on the market, and now has the full Blue-Ray support. The PS3 is so powerful that it becomes also a serious platform to be used in enterprise, due to its impressive computing performance: it may be interesting as a very good server, competing with many server racks that are sold at too huge prices! What about a PS3 on your work desktop, featues with Linux and OpenOffice? Sony really made a much better product than Microsoft with its XBox toy that is locked everywhere! So why upgrading from XP to Vista with so many risks? Either keep XP for what it does now, and think about upgrading with a PS3!

gwaltman
gwaltman

Common MS, you can't get rid of a product until you can fully replace it's capabilities. MS has not even come out with an Admin pack that will allow most of us to do our job from Vista. Yes, the current Admin pak almost works in some cases but it can't be trusted in most. And you can't manage Exchange either. What good is an OS that can't be used for day to day operations. Yes, sure you can run word and IE on Vista, but it needs to do a whole lot more before it goes into production use. These guys have a lot of work to do before taking XP off the shelve.

OldER Mycroft
OldER Mycroft

According to the latest info in the British trade press, that is the current belief. Apparently 10% better than XP SP2 but 50% better compared to Vista SP1. Maybe THAT is why M$ ain't dumping XP quite yet.

Jack-M
Jack-M

CNN has a good article which explains why bloat is such a bad thing. Unneeded features make products more cumbersome to use and the addition of new features often sacrifices the performance (and sometimes the integrity) of older features. Why not stick with an older version of the product then? Two reasons: (1) you only get customer support if you stay current, and (2) if you need to work with other people using the same program older versions are often incompatible with newer versions, so if anybody is using the newest version, then everybody must upgrade. "The Bloatware Debate" is a technical discussion of how two separate people dissected one particular Microsoft program and found out, to their shock, that it was over 2,000% larger than it should have Been. It would appear from this discussion that the cumbersome size of Microsoft programs is due not only to the continually growing clutter of useless features but it is also due to careless programming (perhaps to an even larger degree). Did you realize 486's are still useable machines if you're running something other than Microsoft's latest software? For instance, Linux worked great on 486's back when they were the top of the line and amazingly enough it didn't stop working on them once the Pentiums came out. Yes, Linux has evolved since then to take advantage of more powerful computers, but the latest version of Linux will still work well on older equipment. There are also plenty of other operating systems that work equally well on machines that Microsoft has abandoned support for. Don't let your old equipment gather dust - older machines make great IP Masquerading routers (which allow you to connect multiple computers to the internet at once using only one phone line or cable modem) or great machines for checking email and chatting online. If you can't use your older equipment yourself, rest assured that somebody out there (such as your local school) could put it to very good use. Don't write it off because Windows doesn't run on it.

Jack-M
Jack-M

In response to the petition to 'Save XP' I feel confident that MS will ignore it's users as they have in the past, repeatedly. MS could not care less about their users as long as they continue selling software and vaporware. I use XP and now, 5 or more years later, I still receive 'updates' to correct problems which should have been right before it was shipped. MS is obnoxious, arrogant, and feel justified in being so.

JohnMcGrew
JohnMcGrew

And the hardware vendors need Microsoft to continue enticing users to upgrade while bloating Windows so that there's absolutely no practical way to use the new version on old hardware. If Windows were to continually get more efficient and stable, we wouldn't be compelled to swap out machines every 18th months like they'd like us to.

PhilippeV
PhilippeV

Hardware vendors are just resellers, their involvement is not great for Microsoft, as they compete very hard to get Windows licences at ridiculous prices. But the same vendors are more interested in fact into building servers and value-added solutions, but they really suffer from having a bad history of constant business failures and not being able to provide service for long time for their product. It's true that Microsoft gives more value to its VARs but Microsoft has constantly desesperated its most promissing VARs by not offering good security for the products that VARs wanted to develop and support: Microsoft is constantly fighting against them, trying to steal on their market shares, and always attempting to break their business model and best-valued products, by always introducing new incompatibilities. The "Save XP" petition is really the result of lack of support of a stable platform for value-added developments.That's why Microsoft lags so much behind in enterprises and why almost all Internet and application servers (that are now massively deployed and used everywhere) run Linux, not Windows: Linux gives much more time for companies to build their projects and infrastructure, when Microsoft is always wanting them to upgrade everything and restart their project with new development tools and methods, such thing that is costing SO MUCH in enterprises due to the training cost, and the cost of expertise (and lack of competent programmers to work on those always changing platform technologies). Many IT workers are tired of having to put every thing they learned to the basket only 2 years later. The nly workers that get some benefits are business workers. Not IT. The Microsoft choice is simply impossible to manage in long term developments. Think instead about what others are doing for enterprise projects: namely IBM, Sun, Oracle, and now Apple back again... Microsoft is like a nervous child that constantly changes its mind every few minutes. May be it's cute, but that's an empty shell that has lots to learn, and that nobody can understand for its irrational and unexpected/unconcerted choices.

JCitizen
JCitizen

I was reading on CNET that a PS3 is the cheapest blu ray player you could buy, and the least likely to become totally marginalized by upgrades to the hardware/firmware for HD DVD.

Dumphrey
Dumphrey

brand new server. $7500 got us a P3 800 Mhz and 512 Mb pc 133 ram. It runs DOS 6.22. It runs 24/7 serving up error information custom database program provided by the vendor, performing nightly backups of the master server, and can operate AS the master server if need be (requires moving a few cables). Six months ago we replaced a primary station (workstation with digiboard to receive serial connections from monitors, then passes the signal to a server)in our Central Station. It took the software company 6 weeks to get the new xp machine to run reliably enough to use, let alone as well as the dos 6.2 on P1 was. 486's, dos, old computers, all have their uses. A 486 can make one heck of a router/firewall, can run an older or slimmed down linux and be a fully operational web/email station.. it goes on.

Larry the Security Guy
Larry the Security Guy

"if anybody is using the newest version, then everybody must upgrade" We are forcced, sometimes, to upgrade because of compatability issues. Compatibility issues arise because people upgrade. Round and round we go, forcing others to upgrade and being forced to upgrade. On 486s, I have found that there are some older platforms onto which a newer Linux OS can't be installed. I suspect it's because the release I tried was compiled with 586 or newer extensions that my trusty old 486 couldn't handle. But Smoothwall loads and runs quite nicely, Slackware 10 also loads up. Gentoo might, but the GUI does push that old box beyond its limits sometimes.

Tig2
Tig2

If you can find that CNN story, would you post a link to it here? I would love to read it but am not finding it on CNN's site. Might be coffee deprivation though. Regardless, it sounds like a good read. Thanks!

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

"Linux worked great on 486's back when they were the top of the line and amazingly enough it didn't stop working on them once the Pentiums came out. Yes, Linux has evolved since then to take advantage of more powerful computers, but the latest version of Linux will still work well on older equipment." Sure it will run, as long as you use the command prompt and don't attempt to run a GUI or GUI-based application. That's not an issue in the server room, but few people want to use a CLI desktop or laptop. There's not enough horsepower on a 486 to run a GUI effectively.

ted
ted

I am happy that Microsoft releases patches, because if I were still using Windows 98, and finally XP is released, would I be happy with my 386/486?

The Listed 'G MAN'
The Listed 'G MAN'

if you are really that unhappy. Mind you, I see no OS nor software product that does not have these evil 'updates'. Edit - Updated - SEE!!!

JCitizen
JCitizen

Those things were a hoot weren't they!? I was always amazed the paper didn't get hung up in the gears rolling the stock back and forth on the large format devices. My AADS vaporizes when I have a robot to watch. Guess that's why I ended up in industrial automation for a while.

j-mart
j-mart

Schools only seem these days to see computing in terms of windows and "consumer computing". It is my opinion, if you want to get into the "science of computing" you can probably learn a lot about how computing works even on an old commodore 64 than you ever will playing with a few toys on a modern windows machine.

j-mart
j-mart

We now have all the BS and bells and whistles with our computers now but do we get our tasks completed any faster. In my field of CAD I am certain we are not any more productive now than back in the early to mid "90's". The only productivity gain of significance was going from the old "pen plotter's to the wide format ink jet. What used to take 40 minutes now takes only a couple of minuets now, though pen plotters are fun to watch,

normhaga
normhaga

> "There's not enough horsepower on a 486 to run a GUI effectively." In the last two months I built up a 400 Mhz PIII and installed OpenSuSE 10.2 on it. Yes, I changed the graphics card to an NVidia Force four and raised the ram from 128 megs to 384 megs. While slow, it runs OpenSuSE well enough in runlevel 5 (full Gnome desktop). If you check distro's SuSE/OpenSuSE is on of the more bloated Linux distro's. This is a generation behind the 486.

Dumphrey
Dumphrey

that he had to "kill, skin, and cook" all his own meals if he wanted to eat that day, but Mastodons and saber tooths were not as cooperative as they are "fir us'n kids these days."

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

"486's ran xwindows (gnome)better than they ran windows 3.1" The operative words are "ran", as in the past tense. Would you load a current distro / version of Gnome / KDE on a 486? Notice all of Jack-M's proposed uses for Linux on a 486 are non-GUI. As to giving older hardware to school districts, none of the three in my area will touch anything less than a P3.

Antagonist
Antagonist

486's ran xwindows (gnome)better than they ran windows 3.1 and looked better doing it too. Now even today, a pentium 4 2ghz will run xwindows much better than it runs windowsXP. Granted that might be my subjective opinion but I think a lot of people will agree with me.

Ed Woychowsky
Ed Woychowsky

I programmed mainframes in assembler. And, it was, five miles barefoot in the snow, up hill both directions to the card reader!

Shellbot
Shellbot

i think so anyways.. 3..yup, 3 people were sacrificed for that thought.. and now that i've acomplished that, tiem to go home for a nap..

OldER Mycroft
OldER Mycroft

I might almost believe in 'up hill swamps'. :)

Shellbot
Shellbot

..eh..Futurama..thats it!!!

Shellbot
Shellbot

Just think, what will we be saying 20 years into the future..? By then computers will be implanted chips in our brains and they won't need GUI's.. oh sugar...that takes us back to the old days then doesn't it... ah man...i don't like where this train of thought is taking me.. dang thinking...always gets me in the end..

CharlieSpencer
CharlieSpencer

And we walked 12 miles to MIT every day through the snow and polar bears, and 18 miles back in 110 degrees F through the alligator-infested swamps, up hill both ways. And we liked it that way! These kids today, they're too soft.

The Listed 'G MAN'
The Listed 'G MAN'

1101101101101101101100001001001001001001100010010010 10001001001001000100100010001000101 Use IT?

Shellbot
Shellbot

if the Users didn't have fancy GUI's and stuff..a lot of us wouldn't be employed in IT !!

OldER Mycroft
OldER Mycroft

With the advent of colourful GUIs and all the eye-candy that the younger generation is growing up with (and into), the average user is no longer using a true computer in the strictest sense of the phrase - their usage is akin to any other domestic appliance that has an 'ON' button and a 'Function Selector' switch. Back in the days of my much-loved Amiga 4000, I was suitably impressed by the Workbench and its associated point'n'click abilities, BUT I spent the majority of my time buried in the CLI which was more definite, more direct, and far more powerful. THAT was back in the days when users actually 'used' a computer.

xspecx
xspecx

vista, in spanish, translates to hearing! but does micro giant need to have their ears check? and then to kill XP because their dissatisfied with vista sales! the microsuckers don't care too much about public opinion, but rather to their wonderful bottom line, and when that falls thru the floor, then they'll finally realize that somethings wrong (who am i kidding!). but if they blunder into making some huge sales profit off of one of their miracle projects, then this fal thru the floor won't happen, and the microsucker will continue on it's merry way with more garbage to con the public into buy, buy, buy! as it stands now, vista is just too slow to start up from a cold boot, let alone having it run what little software that's out on the market. in comparison, with vista & xp with both machines having 2gb memory, the xp running at 1.2ghz is up, playing music, and surfing the net by the time vista at 2.4ghz even has their display window up. then there's the hardware compatibility problem if you even dare switch the vista machine to xp! ever since the PC came into use at home, it was simple to run, manage, and fix or make changes for it to handle other tasks. but when the processor speed kept going up, up, and up, so did the complexity, manageability, and expense in improvements (which is commonly known as these new updates, and accessories). as long as people are conned into buying the newest toy on the market, even though it's old hardware in a fancy package, microsucker will keep making them!

norb_houston
norb_houston

Just read this article on Zdnet, never delved too deep into the topic yet but will. Seems like an open sourced alternative to both Linux and Windows to build your own OS? Anyone else with information on this? http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/?p=1162

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