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Windows Operating Systems Software

Inside Windows XP Reduced Media Edition 605

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the don't-hold-your-breath dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Flexbeta.net has got it's take on Windows XP Reduced Media Edition, which is basically Windows XP Pro stripped of its Windows Media Player. To sum it up, there is hardly any noticable difference between XP RME and XP Pro, except for the welcome screen and Windows not recognizing their own file format. The article hints how this may be the beggining to a Windows OS without any Microsoft applications. Bye-bye Internet Explorer?"
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Inside Windows XP Reduced Media Edition

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:44PM (#11659750)
    An anonymous reader writes "Fastfoodbeta.net has got it's take on the Big Mac Without Cheese, which is basically a Big Mac stripped of its cheese. To sum it up, there is hardly any noticable difference between BM w/o C and BM, except for the wrapper and Mcdonalds not recognizing their own ingredient. The article hints how this may be the beggining to a Big Mac without any McDonalds condiments. Bye-bye Secret Sauce?"
  • omg ! (Score:2, Funny)

    by 3cpo (856823)
    oh my god ! they will soon throw out my well beloved WordPad !!
  • Wait a minute... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Bobvanvliet (569014) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:47PM (#11659780)
    ... I thought Europe still had some objections to the words "reduced media"?
  • by CarrionBird (589738) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:47PM (#11659781) Journal
    The only people who are put off my the presence of WiMP in windows, probably aren't likey to be buying windows in any form.

    If it were cheaper, than you might have something.

    • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:54PM (#11659853) Homepage Journal
      The point is not the people put off by WMP. It's the vast majority of people who won't ever get turned on by anything else, because WMP is the default player. Most people never change any computer defaults, let alone switch the default app for media types. Even savvy users have a hard time even figuring out how to switch. Most people get Windows without going through a process of evaluating alterantives, and most of them just use WMP because it "came free with it", and never consider changing. This forced unbundling gives competitors a chance to compete based on whether a user actually likes it.
      • And none of those people know or care enough to seek out a version of windows specifically without Media Player.
      • It all seems kind of pointless though, if Microsoft are still allowed to sell winXP pro alongside this version then who will buy it ?. Even if the media player enabled version is banned from the EU what will stop people from buying a copy of XP Pro from outside of Europe ?.

        This doesn't really help people developing other media player software at all.
        • It's true. If they allow sales of the bundled XP/WMP, it will compete as unfairly with the unbundled version as with standalone media players. This does start to seem like yet another government whitewash of a MS monopoly. Where the government makes a big deal about "stopping Microsoft", actually going all the way through to a "victory", then getting one that doesn't stop Microsoft in any way. All they're doing is paying a glorified fine.
      • by dioscaido (541037) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:20PM (#11660070)
        I agree with your point, but how does the EU's proposal solve the problem? Now when they click on a media file windows will prompt the user to download WMP, and we're back to the original problem... I would have rather have them keep WMP but bundle other media player apps with their installation.
      • True, but these people aren't going to be buying an operating system. They are just going to use what's ont he computer.

        Will computer manufacturers be selling PCs with NO media player? Not likely, they'd be flooded with people what to know why there computer don't work like others.

        I just doubt there is going to be much competition added by this move.
      • by John Murdoch (102085) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @02:57PM (#11660888) Homepage Journal
        Most people get Windows without going through a process of evaluating alterantives, and most of them just use WMP because it "came free with it", and never consider changing. This forced unbundling gives competitors a chance to compete based on whether a user actually likes it. [Emphasis mine]

        Unbundling isn't necessarily a good thing
        One of the common fallacies of many software developers (and product designers of all types) is to assume that "everybody is just like me." "Allowing" someone to evaluate alternatives and make choices in order to use a tool they have purchased may not be a great idea. The consumer bought the computer and expects certain functionality--like the ability to play media. A stripped OS, to most consumers, isn't an opportunity to evaluate other alternatives and make the best choice--it's a broken OS. I'd be floored if European electronics stores don't start getting computers brought back because "it doesn't work"--because the consumer can't play MP3s. And when the poor stiff at the Customer Service desk explains that the consumer has to go online to find a suitable device and download it--instead of getting it in the box, for free, the consumer might just wonder what government bureaucrat thought this a better idea....

        When unbundling is positively BAD
        I've been working with computers for more than twenty years. In that time I've learned a few truths, and one of them is that 99% of the people who use computers are not the slightest bit interested in computer technology. They are interested in doing something, and use the computer to help them do it. A lot of people (I'd estimate more than 80%) have a certain amount of fear about that computer--they've heard all sorts of horror stories, and have all kinds of mental images of launching missiles or causing electrical blackouts if they "press the wrong button." (Digression: I'm also convinced that network admins routinely mention dire consequences like missile launches and urban catastrophes if their instructions are not followed to the letter.) My point: the typical user does not trust the computer. And that's a crucial issue for anybody interested in implementing technology solutions on any platform, anywhere.

        You only get one chance to make a good first impression...
        I'm a software architect--I design software for lighting control and building automation. As part of that my team needs to present information to the user: some of that information is presented as PDFs, some as HTML, some as JavaScript, some as text, and some as SVG. In order to seamlessly install systems on an end user's computer we depend upon specific applications being present. We don't depend upon Windows Media Player (memo to staff: write a jingle that plays "your lights are on!" Or not.) But we do depend upon having Notepad.exe there (text editor), and we depend upon Internet Explorer being there. They're crucial parts of our product--if they're not there, our app won't work. Take them out of the standard load of every Windows-based PC in the world, and I suddenly have a substantially harder (and more expensive) problem to solve. My customers are far more prone to see errors. My ability to deliver a seamless solution to customers who have an innate fear of the computer is compromised.

        The consumer isn't the winner here...
        The end result of forced "unbundling" is not that consumers get more choice. It is that consumers are forced to make choices that they have been perfectly content to ignore up till now. And they will be forced to pay higher prices for any technology that, heretofore, depended upon bundled technology to exist--because vendors will now have to write all kinds of additional code to deal with all the possible versions that might emerge.

        • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @03:15PM (#11661043) Homepage Journal
          I've been writing software since 1977. I remember when a "PC" meant a Commodore PET/CBM, bundled with its builtin green screen, keyboard and tape drive. No choices. Or an Altair 8080, which was built by its owner from parts sometimes as simple as a switch bank - too many choices. Nowadays, there's a market for companies like Dell, HP, Gateway, which bundle standardized parts and their own specialized components, to make the vast array of choices into manageable packages.

          Listen to your own advice: "everybody is just like me" is a fallacy. Getting only the same WMP with the same XP for eveyone sure does save on support costs, and avoids those confusing choices. But of course we want to be able to have the PC environment best suited to us. So there is clearly a market for a retail layer which assembles HW, OS and app components from the galaxy of options, into an understandable set of choices from which the mass of goal-oriented, tech-disinterested consumers can buy. Linux, with Linspire and other vendors, is delivering that model. Even Windows could work that way, with brands like AOL or Electronic Arts, or even TV brands like CNBC putting together PC bundles to serve their market segments. But Windows bundling competes unfairly with all those options. Consumers don't get manageable choices, competitors don't stand a chance. That's a middle ground that's being explored profitably for all, wherever it's not preempted by something like a Windows monopoly. We deserve better, and we can get it.
          • But Windows bundling competes unfairly with all those options. Consumers don't get manageable choices, competitors don't stand a chance....We deserve better, and we can get it.

            I respectfully disagree--I think you are giving software vendors far too little credit for ingenuity. And I think, perhaps, that you're not recognizing the ways in which bundling helps putative competitors, and helps the consumer.

            As I see it, there are three ways in which bundling affects the marketplace:

            • Creating a marketplace
    • What makes you think it won't be cheaper? As I understand it, the EU ruling forces MS to make this version cheaper.
    • The only people who are put off my the presence of WiMP in windows, probably aren't likey to be buying windows in any form. If it were cheaper, than you might have something.

      I believe that it IS supposed to be cheaper, according to the EU. The point being that OEMs can then choose to bundle an alternative player, and pay for it, and still come out with a product the same or lower price than the the "with WMP" version. Or give a price break for those who don't want one at all, or who choose to install it t

  • ..not dell, not compaq... why should anyone sell pcs with a OS where u need to after-install such things as the media player? MS knows that no one will do that.
    • by 1u3hr (530656) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:46PM (#11660305)
      ..not dell, not compaq... why should anyone sell pcs with a OS where u need to after-install such things as the media player? MS knows that no one will do that.

      The points are:

      • the "reduced media" XP will be cheaper (by mandate of EU)
      • if you don't want WMP preinstlled, you can buy XP without, and pocket the difference, then go home and download the media player of your choice, or leave it out
      • OEMs will be free to include alternative media players. Back before MS made IE compulsory, it was common to buy an "Internet ready PC" with Windows 3.1 + Netscape + Eudora + etc... preinstalled.
      Advantages to users: save money; choice; and vendors cannnot assume everyone has WMP and so will need to supply media in more open formats; DRM hopefully has a spanner thrown in it.
    • by thepoch (698396) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @02:30PM (#11660637)
      Actually I'm looking at it from another perspective... the business owner perspective. This version of Windows now allows me to have a PC with Windows without a Media Player. So now, I can set the user account to a reduced permission, so they can't install much else. And at the same time, don't have to hack with permissions, gpedit.msc, etc, just so employees can't play videos, and music in the office.

      If the employee needs it, they will have to first request for it. If approved by management, then they get it. Otherwise, it's basic computer without stuff that can be distracting to work.

      Now if only we can get the browser and email program out. Some employees don't need the Internet at all. So not having the applications removes distractions, temptation, and cruft.

      This is actually the reason I like deploying Linux desktops for employees... because I can control whether or not they get certain applications. If they need it, they'll have to ask for permission first, rather than have it in by default without any good reason.
  • Uhhh... (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:48PM (#11659797)
    So, How much does it cost to upgrade from regular WinXP Pro?
  • What idiocy. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JanusFury (452699) <kevin.gaddNO@SPAMgmail.com> on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:50PM (#11659819) Homepage Journal
    If you look at the list of files removed from this version, it includes a bunch of DLLs and OCXs that are supposed to come standard with Windows - media playback libraries, etc. What purpose does it serve to remove these files? All you're doing is breaking third-party applications that rely on them! I imagine that if you tested various games and multimedia apps on this version of Windows, they wouldn't work. Now I have another problem to worry about when releasing Windows software... how to deal with machines running this Crippleware edition of Windows.
    • Frustrate the courts. Frustrate the people.
    • If you've written a third party app that breaks when microsoft starts obeying the law, then I'd assume you'd have a resonably good chance of suing the hell out of them!

      Anyone for a class action lawsuit?
      • Yeah, except the fact that only the incredibly silly american courts understand the concept of "class action". In Europe, we don't, and it is a good thing. Except when you want to push Microsoft for money because they've provided you a service for years without making you pay for it.
    • Re:What idiocy. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by JMZorko (150414) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:26PM (#11660121) Homepage

      Well, when you release your app, you release more than just "your" app ... on Windows, there are redistributable components that you should probably include in your release. These are detailed on MSDN, if you look hard enough.

      What i'm trying to say is that it would be wise not to assume a component you need is already on the Windows box. This is why you either link statically with the C runtime, or redistribute the MSVCRT* stuff with your app. The same goes for media applications -- if you depend on WMVCORE.DLL, for instance, make sure you also ship the MS redistributable WMVCORE installer. This is just common sense if you're targeting Windows (esp. different versions). Nothing has changed.

      Regards,

      John

  • Many times, when people compares the GNU Operating System against the Windows Operating System, they make a misleading comparation, since they are comparing a FULL OS as GNU (That is, a kernel, basic system software, librarys, Graphic system, video and audio applications, office suits, browser, IM, compilers, editors, games, etc,etc,etc), With just a kernel, a graphic system and shell, basic system software, and the only 2 major apps that came with windows, which are windows media and ie.

    Now, with microsof
  • Reduced MS (Score:5, Funny)

    by Doc Ruby (173196) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:51PM (#11659829) Homepage Journal
    If Europe's justice system manages to break up Microsoft into separate OS, app, devtools, and media companies, I might finally start a campaign for dual citizenship.
    • Re:Reduced MS (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Phil246 (803464)
      Problem is Microsoft is an american company. the EU cant break them up into seperate companies - that requires the US to do that.

      Im sure you know what the chances of that happening are, at least within the next 4 years :)
      • With this action, the EU has at least prevented the "bundling" play that Microsoft uses to abuse its monopoly across those sectors. If the US did the same, lots of the economic benefit would be lost, and a breakup could represent a much better value to its combined shareholders - including Gates, who calls the shots. But, as you point out, fat chance of any action against the Microsoft monopoly under Bush.
  • by Dr. Spork (142693) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:53PM (#11659849)
    The article says that just downloading the WMP from microsoft makes this into a full XP Pro edition. So the effect is the same as being able to uninstall WMP, which is what I've been hoping to do for a long time.

    What I'm saying is that this reduced edition really is superior, because it's easy to convert it into the full version, but not vice versa.

    Yes, the majority of microsoft's evil annoyances are still there, but this is progress nonetheless.

    • What issues do people have with WMP anyway? Don't people realise that WMP and IE are not "applications" but more like "services"? That third-party software developers use these services in their own applications to achieve great results. Look at Zoom Player - arguably the best media player for Windows. It's based on WMP - it uses it to render the video, and using the plethora of hooks into WMP, configure it and tweak it to hades to get the best performance out of it. It's the same with IE - it's just a
      • Hey, I don't think this is a troll response to my comment. Weird moderating!

        The article doesn't say just what functionality gets removed in the reduced edition. Is it the whole DirectShow codec structure? I had the impression that this wasn't the case. Well, even if it is, I'm sure you will be able to download a "codec bundle" to restore only the functionality you need. Yeah, I didn't say this was a huge step forward, but it's better than nothing.

      • by Decaff (42676) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @02:24PM (#11660595)
        What issues do people have with WMP anyway? Don't people realise that WMP and IE are not "applications" but more like "services"?

        The point is that they WERE applications. They have been transformed into services for business reasons: in order to crowd out alternative application providers. In a monopoly, that is illegal.

        There was another way things could have happened. Microsoft could worked with suppliers of applications in order to develop an API for these services that both Microsoft and other companies could have written to. That way applications could target the 'standard HTML rendering API', and use IE or Mozilla as the engine. They could target the 'standard media playing API' and choose either WMP or Real.

        Removing these portions will severely affect third-party developers. Now, a zoom player download is increased from a couple of megs to well over 20. Genius.

        As for downloads, there is nothing to stop vendors supplying multiple media players on CD/DVD ready to install in the PC. This is the way it used to be with browsers.

    • So the effect is the same as being able to uninstall WMP

      Most users do not go around downloading and installing software [ at least not intentionally ]. For the croud that follows the path of least resistance this puts WMP on a level playing field.

      But

      Why would an OEM load a computer with this version? If I had a chouce between 2 boxes - both with the same price - I would go with the one with the media player already installed.

      • The issue is whether OEMs need to pay extra for the media player and (even more important) whether MS will allow them to install other media players too.

        If I was an OEM, I'd want to install RealPlayer and Quicktime in addition to WMP (all configured not to run at startup, of course). Also Firefox alongside IE, and maybe the Yahoo or AOL IM clients alongside MSN Messenger. Perhaps even OpenOffice.

        However, MS forces some OEMs into agreements that prohibit this. And we can't know exactly what they say, becau
  • It just won't sell: nobody wants to buy something that has the word "reduced" in it's name. Microsoft will stop distributing it after a while and just say: "it was a flop, the customers don't want it".
  • From TFA:

    A few names which Microsoft may be using could include: Windows XP Shi**tee Edition, Windows XP No Media Player Here Edition, Windows XP The EU Sucks Edition, and

    Windows XP Buy XP Pro Instead of This Since They Are Both Worth The Same Price Edition.

    I must purchase XP workstations for our facility. I would jump on getting only the features of XP Pro that I need & not getting those that I don't for a reduced cost in a heartbeat. Depending on the savings, I might even use it on more workstat

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Windows media player is buggy piece of crap anyways. I prefer winamp and vlc player instead of the included ms bloatware. lots of the included apps in windows are buggy memory hogs.

    For pretty much every app included in windows there is a better 3rd party alternative, most of them free or even open source

    id much rather not have paint but Gimp and Open Office instead of wordpad.
  • by 3.09 a hour (812839) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:57PM (#11659877)
    Maybe this is a step towards a stripped down version of windows that *gasp* installs only the bare essentials by default and lets you get what you need later! Sounds like a good idea untill you relize somehow M$ probably figures they shoould charge MORE for a product with les features
  • by IgD (232964) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:57PM (#11659883)
    The big question: Is there a performance improvement without all that fluff? (Especially on older PC's)

    This is what I really like about Linux, stuff is turned off by default. This ensures security and saves valuable resources. Microsoft seems to have everything enabled out of the box.

    • Depends on the distro and how you install it, of course.

      However, if you do put on X11 and mplayer natively, it's faster than Windows and Media Player.
    • Why would not having WMP improve performance? I mean, your average Linux distro comes with an order of magnitude more software than plain Windows and it doesn't cause problems. The presence of files on a disk doesn't make processes run slower.
  • by thepr0fess0r (756276) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @12:59PM (#11659895) Homepage
    I'm gonna wait for "Windows XP: Reduced resource consumption edition." [/troll]
  • The big question is, will this be popularly renamed 'Windows XP WTF Edition' (WTF=what the fuck) by the regular users who it is foisted onto? Most average users aren't frantic about preventing Microsoft from preinstalling a Media Player.

    Zealots: the ball is in your court now to convince 'regular folks' that this is a good thing.
  • Stupid bureaucrats (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Donny Smith (567043)
    >So how does the end user benefit from this decision? In my opinion, they don't.

    Exactly.

    The whole thing was a stupid PR show by the stupid Euro bureaucrats.

    When the whole thing was about to unfold, it seemed like some sort of politically-correct push against US-based Microsoft and a welcome boost for the home-grown SuSE and Mandrake.

    Well it's 2005 now; Mandrake has been marginalized, SuSE was lucky to be acquired by IBM (their proxy Novell, that is) and enterprises are back to buying U.S. software (R
  • It is my understanding that one of the alternatives proposed by the EU was that MS include both their own media player + the real player (& maybe quicktime?), all with equal placement.

    Can someone confirm this?

    For the consumer, that would have been the ideal solution.
  • by chadrickb (856491) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:03PM (#11659922)
    On one hand, probably a majority of Microsoft's practices are a bit shady (like trying to name a product 'reduced media edition' - that's in part why I'm slowly switching to the Mac. On the other hand, as a consumer, I like the idea of OSes bundling software. OS X and Linux both typically come with tons. Saves me money in a lot of cases. So hey, if in the future Microsoft wants to bundle Antivirus and antispyware solutions, go ahead. Not to mention that WMP 10 was pretty good, certainly much better than most all the alternatives - like RealPlayer. Maybe bundling software will encourage companies like Real and Symantic to stop making bloated subpar software. And if companies like Real went out of business, would many people really be upset?
    • Bloatware (Score:3, Interesting)

      by filipvh (193450)
      On the contrary: if Windows includes basic antivirus, then Symantec/whoever has to come up with Double Super Plus Turbo Extended Anti-Virus. It has to have New! Improved! features just to be a saleable proposition compared to the freebie thrown in with Windows. This virtually guarantees it will be bloatware.

      The other thing is that the large majority of users will never bother installing any product other than the basic one included in Windows. This shrinks the potential market for competitors and will i
  • The article hints how this may be the beggining to a Windows OS without any Microsoft applications.

    since the edition in question is only available in the eu, its existence is irrelevant to the rest of the world, and will probably cease to exist entirely after a few more legal rounds.
  • by BiDi (853932) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:12PM (#11659996)
    There is a simple reason why you wouldn't want to remove IE from the system: You install windows and want to download firefox from the internet. Now give me one good way that doesn't request user to have 5 years of experience with dos, ftp or similar utility to do that? Remember: bundling something like lynx with Windows is the same as bundling IE... so what can a newbie with only a brand new computer & Windows CD do now?

    The usual "If modem doesn't work download new driver from the internet." problem. ;)
    • by linebackn (131821) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @02:12PM (#11660511)
      There is a simple reason why you wouldn't want to remove IE from the system: You install windows and want to download firefox from the internet. Now give me one good way that doesn't request user to have 5 years of experience with dos, ftp or similar utility to do that?

      Which is why IE should have been an add/removable application from day one.

      1: Install XP with IE.
      2: Download and install Firefox.
      3: Go to add/remove programs, remove IE. (Profit!)
    • There was a time before you downloaded everything off the internet.

      If microsoft were forced to release a browserless windows (oh please! please!) then OEM's could put their own browser (probably branded firefox) on the desktop.

      Failing that, you'd grab a handy ISP cd and install a browser from that, just like a few years ago when IE wasn't mandatory on windows, or grab one from a mate. Using your logic, you could argue that it's impossible for a newb to sign up for any ISP that isn't bundled in windows, as
  • by lspd (566786)
    So "Reduced Media Edition" is a stripped down version of XP Pro, meaning they are going to charge more for RME than XP Home, right?

    Why don't the antitrust folks just give up on this sort of BS. There is no way anyone is going to force Microsoft to compete fairly short of (a) splitting the company up into a dozen different ones which each control one piece of software, or (b) forcing Microsoft to sell the rights to older versions of their applications and OS to the highest bidder.

    No one is going to buy
  • ...strip out all of the applications (what half of them are doing embedded in there I'll never understand) and just make a nice list during installation so that users (or companies selling preinstalled windows) can pick and choose what they want installed. They shouldn't throw apps out completely, but they should include them on a CD so that users may chosse what they want. This way we could have WMP or IE if we wanted to and if not, then we can just say no.
  • How is this 'solution' serving the consumer, at all?

    Instead of stripping functionality, why not force MS to inform the consumer that alternatives do exist? OSX comes with IE and Safari... why not force Windows be bundled with WMP, Quicktime, etc...? But not Real Player for the love of god! :}

    Of course, then it becomes a question of which media players to bundle, and why give those company the upper hand over other competitors. But still, a solution on those lines seems more reasonable.
  • The EU failed. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by geeklawyer (85727) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:17PM (#11660049) Homepage Journal
    AIUI no European systembuilders are shipping with XP RME. Until the EU compels EU builders to ship systems with it, it will be a remedy that will fail.

    The EU failed when they only insisted RME should be offered as an option. What they should have done was forbid the sale of the full version of XP in Europe. This is a remedy that is applied in other anti-trust/competition cases, and it should have been done here. Sure if people want to buy it outside the EU and ship it in for personal use then let them, but it shouldn't be available for sale in the EU at all. The EU Commission has displayed a remarkable, and depressing, lack of nerve.

    Billg must be laughing into his wallet, he's won again. This is the reason MS aren't appealing the refusal to overturn interim relief until full trial: because they dont care it doesn't matter. XP RME will sell a dozen copies in Europe - tops.

  • Would you like to see a Super-Reduced Windows in future with no WMP, Windows Movie Maker, Paintbrush, Outlook Express, Windows Messenger, MSN Explorer plus bunch of other s*tty software you don't use anyways which would cost half the price of UnReduced Windows? Why pay $200 for OS with stuff I don't use if you can pay $100 for OS without that stuff? All this litigation is about giving people choice not to pay for stuff they don't need.
  • Even with the strip down version, they can still put a FTP links on the desktop to help user download Windows Media Player and IE, right?
  • Gates testified in the most recent U. S. antitrust trial that it was impossible to remove WMP from the OS. This would break the OS according to GAtes. We have him under oath here.

    Did anyone besides the Judge believe him when he said this? It was a lie so bold only a lawyer would believe it.

  • by voss (52565) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @01:36PM (#11660217)
    Does the term "bad faith" mean anything to these guys?

    If I were going to require microsoft to do anything it would be to offer a standalone windows update application that would work without internet explorer.
  • Purpose of RME (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ccbailey (859060)

    I'm seeing a lot of posts today asking why anyone would go to the store and buy an XP without WMP installed or what benefit it poses to the consumer. I'd tend to agree with most of the posters that the benefit to the consumer is essentially none.

    As I recall, however, the whole point of the RME edition was so that OEMs had greater flexibility in installing software on their Windows machines. This was supposed to foster competiton in the media player business since certain lines of computer would come with

  • by iggymanz (596061) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @05:34PM (#11662068)
    store clerk: "we got ms windows NT, microsoft windows XP, ms windows ME, microsoft windows 2000 pro..."

    lady "I dont' want microsoft windows!"

    store clerk: " 'ow about our Microsoft Windows XP Reduced Media Edition, that's not got much Microsoft Windows in it"

    lady "I don't want ANY microsoft windows!"

    chorus: "win win win win win, microsoft win win, Windows, wonderul windows!...."
  • xplite (Score:4, Informative)

    by moosesocks (264553) on Sunday February 13, 2005 @11:10PM (#11664437) Homepage
    There's a product called XPLite [litepc.com] which allows you to remove Windows Media Player, IE, and virtually any other component of XP without causing severe harm to the system. You can seriously remove ANY component: COM+, Active Directory, Indexing Service, DirectX, or even remove ALL of XP's networking services. Cool stuff.

    They've also got versions for win2k, ME (shudders), and 98. You can pull off a working 98SE installation in 41mb.

    I'm in no way affiliated with these guys. they just make a cool product that's very applicable to this topic

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