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MS Offers Vista Upgrade Pricing To All 395

Posted by kdawson
from the sultan-Bill's-house-of-software dept.
SlinkySausage writes "With a vague whiff of desperation, Microsoft is offering anyone who downloaded one of the betas or release candidates of Vista upgrade pricing for the full version. The 'special' deal is a sweetener for the fact that the betas will start expiring and becoming non-functional from May 31st. APC Magazine in Australia writes: 'Windows Vista is starting to look like those Persian rug stores which are always having a "closing down" sale... All stock has been slashed, save $$$, why pay more?'" Perhaps Microsoft is cognizant of straws in the wind such as a recent InformationWeek survey indicating that 30% of business have no intention of moving to Vista, ever.
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MS Offers Vista Upgrade Pricing To All

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  • ob (Score:5, Funny)

    by Bloke down the pub (861787) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:23AM (#18883461)

    those Persian rug stores which are always having a "closing down" sale... All stock has been slashed, save $$$, why pay more?
    It's quite reasonable to expect a discount if the goods have been damaged with a knife.
  • by Colin Smith (2679) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:26AM (#18883487)
    Same old, same old. But with a few extra hassles.

    Mmmmm, compelling proposition there. Course, what they should have done is made sure that MS Office was subtly broken on XP. Well, you never know, now I've made that particular suggestion on this highly read web site we might well see that feature in future windows updates.

     
    • by CastrTroy (595695) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:31AM (#18883549) Homepage
      I think that would only have caused companies not to upgrade MS Office either. MS Office 2000 is probably good enough for most businesses (as is 97). With the amount of retraining that 2007 will take, I don't think than most businesses will want to make that move either.
      • by imemyself (757318) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @04:31PM (#18890605)
        To an extent that might possibly be true, however, unlike Vista, Office '07 actually has some useful features that companies would benefit from. As far as the OS itself goes - XP is more than enough for most companies. And most of the problems that Vista addresses can already be solved with Windows XP, just by using some 3rd party software or chaning some configuration things. Meeting Space is interesting, but most companies aren't going to be switching to IPv6 anytime soon, and if you're close enough in location to be on the same subnet, then why not just actually meet in person? Office 2007's features aren't necessarily "must-have" but there are some things that are pretty cool, and do make it easier to create sharp-looking documents and presentations. (For example, Powerpoint 2007 has themes that actually look professional and well designed, graphically speaking, unlike previous versions. Charts in Excel look a lot better, and many of the themes can be used throughout the core Office applications.) Vista on the other hand is useless for businesses, and doesn't offer much for consumers either. Aero Glass is slick, but it isn't going to help business at all, and it'll get old after a few days.
    • by gEvil (beta) (945888) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:36AM (#18883619)
      Mmmmm, compelling proposition there. Course, what they should have done is made sure that MS Office was subtly broken on XP. Well, you never know, now I've made that particular suggestion on this highly read web site we might well see that feature in future windows updates.

      Well, they've got two weeks to put together their "Critical Patch for Office 2007: Fixes a major compatibility issue with Windows XP that allows a computer owner to take control of their computer. It is recommended that everyone install this update. A reboot will be required after installation."
    • by sharkey (16670) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:59AM (#18883911)

      Mmmmm, compelling proposition there. Course, what they should have done is made sure that MS Office was subtly broken on XP.

      Instead of being overtly broken as has been the case since Word 1.0?

    • by vought (160908)
      Mmmmm, compelling proposition there.

      A corporate flop sweat is compelling?

      That's not what people were saying when Apple was desperately trying to foist System 7.5 on people in 1995.

      Microsoft is very bad at poker when they're holding a shitty hand.
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by COMON$ (806135) *
        Microsoft is very bad at poker when they're holding a shitty hand.

        Historically MS has been very good at poker, look at all the "shitty" programs/projects they have gotten the masses to buy.

  • Profit?? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by faloi (738831) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:28AM (#18883511)
    I wonder how much MS really makes off Windows, particularly at the consumer level, in terms of profit per unit. It's easy to see in some business lines where the profit really is (ink jet printers versus cartridge refills, concessions versus ticket prices at theaters, etc.), but it's a little blurry in software. It probably makes good business sense for MS to lower the price on their OS by $100 or so per unit and make it up in other lines of business. 'Course, I still won't upgrade until I get more or less forced into it because of DirectX 10 (damn you, gaming addiction!), but it might get them more actual sales.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by OffTheLip (636691)
      You don't just buy Microsoft, you buy _into_ Microsoft. It often is a life sentence.
    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by kimvette (919543)
      At $751 for the only version worth a damn, it's no wonder Vista isn't selling.
      • by Sancho (17056)
        What was it that made Ultimate worth a damn over Premium, again?
      • Re:Profit?? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by westlake (615356) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:37AM (#18884483)
        At $751 for the only version worth a damn, it's no wonder Vista isn't selling.

        The Geek quotes retail list, for the ultimate boxed set, in whatever currency makes the numbers look most dramatic. Everyone else buys the OEM install, the academic version, etc.

      • Re:Profit?? (Score:4, Insightful)

        by baadger (764884) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:45AM (#18884619)
        $751? You can get a retail version of Vista Ultimate on NewEgg for $380 [newegg.com]. Besides, you'd have to be a complete moron to buy the retail version when for the majority of people there are likely to be essentially three scenarios:

        1) You're buying entirely new hardware and moving to Vista. Get an OEM version at $199 [newegg.com]
        2) You're just upgrading the OS from XP with perhaps a memory and/or GPU upgrade to boot. Get an upgrade version at $250 [newegg.com]
        3) You are buying an OEM PC in which case you'll pay the Vistatax, paying no more than you would have for XP.

        So yes, Vista is expensive, but quit spreading fudd.
        • Re:Profit?? (Score:5, Funny)

          by Provocateur (133110) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @11:17AM (#18885139) Homepage
          Vista is expensive, but quit spreading fudd.

          The $751 he is quoting is the Director's Cut, featuring audio commentary, deleted scenes, multilingual subtitles, and alternate endings, such as failure to boot after the install process. Cut him some slack.
           
        • Re:Profit?? (Score:4, Informative)

          by MoTec (23112) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @11:30AM (#18885379)
          The only problem with that is that only with retail versions do you get both the 32 bit and 64 bit versions. I built a new PC late last year and got a Windows XP Pro license (32 bit, OEM) with a free upgrade to Vista. I got my upgrade, Vista Business (32bit). There was no way for me to upgrade to the 64 bit version. I'm not quite interested in running 64bit quite yet but I want to do it in the future but unfortunately, unless I buy the retail version of Vista I'll be out of luck and the same will be the case for anyone that buys an OEM verisons.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Bedouin X (254404)
      Last I read, Windows and Office are where Microsoft basically make all of their money. The other units (I think there are three or four) were aggregate losers.
    • by Himring (646324)
      I wonder how much MS really makes off Windows

      billions?

    • by peragrin (659227)
      MSFT makes roughly 400% profit on office and windows.

      Every other product line is barely making profit or is losing money.

      Without Window and Office MSFT would have been out of business a long time ago as those two product lines fund everything else.
    • by 2nd Post! (213333)
      If you look at their quarterly/yearly earnings, each copy of Vista will net them about $40 bundled with a PC.

      You will also see that about 1/3 of their operating profit comes from OSes.

      So reducing the price by $100 would lose them money AND reduce their operating profit by half.
  • by blind biker (1066130) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:31AM (#18883561) Journal
    I remember there were a lot of naysayers regarding Windows XP, back when it was introduced, but WinXP did well, in spite of the fact that Win2K already had what companies needed. Probably because WinXP at least wasn't a huge downgrade, compared to Win2K.

    Not so with Vista. My impression is that is't a downgrade. What with the stupidly slow file copy problem, the increased hardware requirements (even if you disregard the graphics card), the DRM, the need for (some) staff re-training... This time the anti-momentum is stronger than with XP.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      XP made a killing on the fact that consumers were fed up with the 9x line. Particularly, WinME. The disaster to end all disasters, which was still probably worse then what Vista currently is.
      • by mpe (36238) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:18AM (#18884191)
        XP made a killing on the fact that consumers were fed up with the 9x line. Particularly, WinME. The disaster to end all disasters, which was still probably worse then what Vista currently is.

        I've heard Vista called "Windows ME v2" :)
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by tftp (111690)
        In addition to that, XP could be set up to be indistinguishable from Win2K in practically all aspects, and it ran all Win2K software, and it contained some usable improvements (ClearType, more USB goodies, built-in firewall eventually, and some more.) Win2K drivers worked on XP, and there was no need to upgrade the hardware. There were only two versions of XP, clearly marked "for home" and "for work", easy to understand, and they left no room for a doubt. So there was a good reason to buy XP instead of W
    • The thing I noticed the first time I used XP was it did not seem to broken. Some of the UI decisions were different than I would have made, but it did work. It was like the first time I used NT, except that NT was probably not consumer prime time game playing ready.

      XP is a version of Windows that I could get behind, as it generally was OK. Just like Windows 95.

      I am not sure if vista does anything interesting. The way it was promised two years ago was compelling. I am not surprised they were not abl

    • by daeg (828071) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:55AM (#18883845)
      The retraining and hardware requirements were the exact excuses I used to start brining Linux into my offices, one computer at a time. We don't have any special software or anything (just Firefox and Microsoft Office, which I am gradually replacing with OOo). Instead of paying $1200 for a decent office computer that can run Vista smoothly, I can pay $600 for a computer with Linux compatible hardware and know I won't have to upgrade for a good long time. The training is going much smoother than I anticipated, actually, and thus far, I've had several employees ask if I could help them run Linux at home (pointed them at the local Linux users group, naturally).

      Why buy expensive hardware and retrain everyone after paying over a thousand dollars per seat (Vista + Office) when you can buy a cheaper, more reliable computer? And the best part of the deal? All those shitty downloadable Windows "games" can't be installed!
    • ... and, of course, XP was terrifying until SP2.
    • The difference (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Opportunist (166417) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:11AM (#18884073)
      When XP came out, I looked at it, considered it shiny, didn't care about shiny, looked again, saw that it was essentially as good as 2k and that I can turn off the shiny and still can get a few additional features out of it. It did not remove anything essential that I was used to in 2k, and it ran as fast as 2k, so I eventually switched.

      When Vista came out, I looked at it, considered it bloated, cared about bloated, looked again, saw that it was worse than XP and that even with the shiny and bloated turned off, it's no better than XP and still slower. It did take away a few liberties that I came to enjoy in XP, and so I will never switch.

      If XP doesn't work anymore, I will move on to another OS. Wine is hopefully ready to run at XP level by the time I have to go, so I know where my next home will be built.
    • the stupidly slow file copy problem

      I am going to go out on a limb and theorize that this "bug" is a deliberate act. It reminds me of IBM in the mainframe/terminal days, where they added delays to ensure that response time was always 2 seconds. And for average users it is good to have average response times -- if you give them a fast one for some things and a slow one for others, they will notice and whine.

      In this case I think something much more potentially sinister is at work. Vista has introduced a "copy lag" that can later on (once we have all accepted the lag) be used to scan files for 1) malware, 2) DRM reasons, 3) do other things we don't want Vista to do.

      Saying that I wouldn't put it past them is an understatement.
      • by Nasarius (593729)
        There are actually a couple problems with copying files in Vista. The first is that initial "lag" as you mentioned. The second is the apparent fact that Vista's I/O scheduler seems to have been completely botched. No longer can I copy a few gigabytes of files around while playing a video. Huh? This worked just fine on XP, and it's obviously not a problem on Linux.

        Add to this an overall sluggishness (has anyone been able to get folders in the new start menu to open smoothly? It consistently responds like
      • I think (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:47AM (#18884643)
        It's a hardware bug, driver bug, or something like it. I'm not saying people haven't had the problem, but I sure haven't seen it on our Vista systems at work. I've copied a ton of data too, shuffling around VMs and such. No appreciable speed difference between Vista and XP that I can see. Well when a problem happens for some people, but not for me, that tells me that it isn't something universally broken in the OS, but rather in their setup.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        Before you go overboard with your conspiracy theory, consider this:

        This is Slashdot. Home to the world's IT experts, with access to the world's computers. IT experts that work for big businesses, and are responsible for hundreds (if not thousands) of potential Vista licences. They realise that there is no good reason to introduce delay (intentionally or unintentionally), especially when used in a business context, and the business would be paying a couple of hundred dollars per computer to upgrade. Such a m
    • I'm sorry, but this runs counter to the standard MS fanboy's talking point that there's nothing to see here. Transitions to Vista are completely normal. Therefore, you must be wrong.
    • The biggest difference was consumers. The consumer option was Win98se or XP. While 98 wasn't as bad as ME, it was hardly "stable" and XP offered a large benefit. XP also offers a little more than 2000, such as better USB, wireless, and power management support. BTW, many large corp. customers are still on 2000.

  • by Krinsath (1048838) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:33AM (#18883577)
    From what I've heard the major problem with Vista is that it was designed by committee with dozens of people involved in even the most minute aspects. The problem with that of course being that that more people = more compromise and a compromise is, from one viewpoint, simply a solution that leaves everyone equally unhappy. From my testing of Vista and reading the various feedback threads, I think that's been an excellent tagline for Vista thus far...the OS that will leave everyone equally unhappy with it.

    The culture at Redmond simply looks like it's gotten so insulated from this "reality" thing that they're sliding into a world where they don't understand that most people do not like the OS. The OS is a required evil to get to what they actually want, which is the applications. The faster the OS gets to those applications and gets the hell out of the way, the better...for most users at any rate. Why this concept seems to elude OS designers is beyond me, but Microsoft needs to come to terms with the idea that when I sit down at a computer to check my email, I want to use my email program, not the OS. If I want to play a game, I want to play the game...not work with the OS. If I need to write something, I want to write...not deal with the OS. It's quite simple really, which is probably why they don't get it.
    • by MontyApollo (849862) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:59AM (#18883909)
      As an average user, I really don't see what the complaints are about Vista. Average consumers really don't care that much about the operating system to begin with. As you said, they care about programs.

      I recently built a new computer and went ahead with Vista because I could get OEM pricing now but maybe not in the future, and I already had copy of XP that I could dual boot. For routine everyday stuff Vista has been fine; I have XP set up in case I play around with any programming, but I find myself always using Vista. One of the main advantages I noticed with Vista is that for some reason the fonts are more readable on my 22" wide-screen in native resolution than they are in XP. It also doesn't seem to have the weird window re-draw problems. In general the display just seems to work better for me.

      Like all versions of Windows, there is no reason for the average consumer to upgrade an existing computer - just wait until you get a new computer. The new computer will likely be equipped to better run Vista too. Vista will eventually take over because of this, like XP did. I have never understood why people would think a majority of average consumers will want to go out and spend money to replace their operating system that is working fine without going ahead and getting a faster, newer computer with all the latest hardware. Instead, it seems to be big news that people are showing some since and waiting.

      • by lubricated (49106) <michalp.gmail@com> on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:21AM (#18884229)
        >> Like all versions of Windows, there is no reason for the average consumer to upgrade an existing computer - just wait until you get a new computer.

        Windows xp over 98/me was a huge improvement and there were plenty of reasons to upgrade.
        98 over 95 was a good upgrade as well.
        95 over 3.1 was also a good upgrade.

        This is the first time that there really is no reason to upgrade.
  • "One quarter of the 612 survey respondents said they were already using the new OS;" - i find that quote more interesting 25% claim to be already using vista seems to be a very high for something just released.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by greginnj (891863)
      You are absolutely right; that leapt out at me too. I thought it was much too optimistic, then I realized that whoever wrote the question was bending over backwards to make Vista sales numbers seem bigger.

      My theory is that the 25% of companies who say they're currently 'using' Vista mean something like, "Brad Gladhand, VP Sales, called us the day after release and insisted he needed a new laptop with Vista installed so he could play DVD videos during sales presentations and not feel embarassed by out of
  • by davidwr (791652) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:40AM (#18883653) Homepage Journal
    The question is, what will replace it?

    With projects line Wine and Mono, hopefully 5 years is enough time to eliminate all MS XP/Vista dependence for their home-grown apps.

    At that point they can choose a vendor-supported OS based on price and the quality of the vendor, not vendor lock-in.

    Within 5 years companies will want their OSes to be portable across hardware. If a generic-box-PC fails they'll want to take their HD out of the failing generic-PC box and put it in another generic-box-PC which may have a completely different CPU and motherboard. If you try that today with XP you run all kinds of risks and it might not even boot. In 5 years companies will use OSes that can tolerate this or put them into a "thin-layer" VM environment to make all their generic-box-PCs look identical enough to eliminate this problem. Think Southwest Airlines and the way they "dumb down" their newer 737s so the entire fleet "looks identical" to their pilots.
    • Don't get your hopes up.

      Whether it works or not, whether it's more stable or not, no manager will jump into that cold pond. Let's look at a manager's brains (bring your microscope, kids!) and see how it ticks.

      The manager will ponder what course to take. Should he buy Vista and accept the lock-in, or should he go Linux with Wine, take the road of liberty? This, dear reader, matters little to him. What matters to him is, that his superiors will never ever fire him for buying Vista. Because it's the tried way,
  • Nuts pricing (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pubjames (468013) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:41AM (#18883661)
    I think one of Microsoft's big problems has they have overpriced the boxed versions of Vista. It is a crazy state of affairs when my local computer shop is selling complete PCs cheaper than the boxed versions of Vista.
    • Re:Nuts pricing (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Phisbut (761268) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:58AM (#18884807)

      I think one of Microsoft's big problems has they have overpriced the boxed versions of Vista. It is a crazy state of affairs when my local computer shop is selling complete PCs cheaper than the boxed versions of Vista.

      But then, isn't that Bill Gates' vision of the future? Hardware will be free [wired.com] and people will only pay for software.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Weedlekin (836313)
        " isn't that Bill Gates' vision of the future? Hardware will be free and people will only pay for software."

        Whereas what we've ended up with is one where an increasingly large proportion of the world's computer users happily buy their hardware, but pay either nothing or very little for software (piracy, FOSS, free stuff from the likes of Google, ad-ware, etc., etc.).
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by tshak (173364)
      It is a crazy state of affairs when my local computer shop is selling complete PCs cheaper than the boxed versions of Vista.


      Why do you assume that there is even a correlation between software and hardware costs? There isn't. They're two completely different industries. Adobe doesn't lower the price of Photoshop because the price of RAM goes down, why should Microsoft?
  • Are they perhaps more like apartment buildings always under the threat of demolition that sign you to nonbinding, shorter, cheaper leases because you never really know when the wrecking ball might be out front? The cheapest and, relatively, nonsketchy place we found to live in Mountain View was like this.
  • ZOMG (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Chicken04GTO (957041)
    Microsoft is adjusting prices to meet demand? Every sane business does this.

    ZOMG get the torches and lets march!
  • Why buy new? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by eltoyoboyo (750015) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:43AM (#18883685) Journal
    When slightly used will do? This is the mantra of a local exercise equipment dealer here. You save a lot of money that way.

    In the computer world, the question is Why buy the operating system, when you can get a new capable computer?

    Amazon is listing Windows Vista Home Premium for $218, slightly less than the US$239 retail. For another $300 you can get a fully capable PC with it with 1GB of RAM and a suitable video card to get a 3.0 on the performance scale.

    This particular market is skewed at moving PCs, not selling operating systems.
  • "betas will start expiring and becoming non-functional from May 31st"

    It's been my experience that MS Windows "beta programs" are actually over around 1 month prior to the next version coming out. I think that's why Windows upgrades leave a bad taste in my mouth- right around the time I've settled in to the latest version (ie. I can start using it profitably without having to combat immature code probs), they start asking me money for the next version.
  • by pandrijeczko (588093) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:45AM (#18883705)
    ...after one of the relations bought a new laptop with Vista on it and asked me to help her set up wireless.

    Okay, so I'm an experienced computer user who already finds the default XP GUI tiresome, bloated and patronising and therefore always puts on the "classic" Windows view - but I found Vista was even worse. Don't get me wrong, it's very pretty and once I found the applications that I was looking for, no different to configuring XP (at least as much as I could see).

    However, whilst we got the wireless working fairly easily, there were too big unforeseen problems that my relation suffered:

    1. She has a legitimate 3 PC student licence for Office 2003 and has used only one of those licenses on the family desktop PC so far. Vista would not accept the license key for Office 2003 no matter what I tried and in the end I had to tell her to call Microsoft to get them to sort it out.

    2. There are no drivers for her Lexmark printer and Lexmark have no plans to release any.

    So, overall, I cannot say I was particularly impressed with Vista - it's got some quite nice eye-candy but not a lot else going for it.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Billosaur (927319) *

      However, whilst we got the wireless working fairly easily, there were too big unforeseen problems that my relation suffered:

      1. She has a legitimate 3 PC student licence for Office 2003 and has used only one of those licenses on the family desktop PC so far. Vista would not accept the license key for Office 2003 no matter what I tried and in the end I had to tell her to call Microsoft to get them to sort it out.

      2. There are no drivers for her Lexmark printer and Lexmark have no plans to release any.

      1. Well, Microsoft wants Vista users to upgrade to Office 2007, so this is no surprise. I suspect MS Tech Support will get it to work, though you can bet she'll be subjected to the "hard sell" the whole time.
      2. That's Lexmark's particular problem. If true, it shows how short-sighted they are. Even if you don't like Vista, you have customers who will use it, and if you choose not to support you printers on Vista, you'll see those users go to someone else who will. Not good business strategy.
  • by HighOrbit (631451) * on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:47AM (#18883747)
    "Extended Support" for XP will be until April 2014. So that is seven years. But long before that seven years, some hardware (some with XP from 2001) will start to die. The replacement hardware will be sold with Vista. Even if the replacement is 'naked' or wiped and installed with XP, some of the devices may not have XP drivers. Also some of the user software that runs on XP will probably become unsupported or abandon-ware before 2014.

    I think the talk of holdouts 'never' installing Vista is bravado. Sooner or later they will be compelled to start supporting Vista or its successor (Blackcomb/Vienna). Maybe they will skip Vista and go to straight to Vienna (provided Vienna gets out the door before 2014, IIRC it is currently scheduled for 2009), but they can't stay with XP forever. The hardware and software won't allow it.
    • If I have to buy a new computer and leave XP then I will probably buy a Mac.

      No need for Vista at all.
    • by AnyoneEB (574727) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:19AM (#18884209)
      You are forgetting something: ReactOS [reactos.org] will be in beta by then according to their roadmap [reactos.org], "meaning a system which is suitable for every day use." At which point, users wanting to get off an aging OS will be able to move to ReactOS instead of Vista. Even if ReactOS moves slower than their roadmap predicts, it will be ready well before XP extended support ends in 2014. (You left out Linux, so I assume we are talking about Windows-like OSes. Significant improvements in WINE and the Linux desktop experience could nullify the necessity for a Windows-like OS, but that could be a long way off.)
    • Drivers for a system will exist as long as the majority of people run that system. No hardware vendor can afford to be incompatible with a sizable portion of his target audience.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by deanc (2214)
      My impression is that "never" meant "We are not going to upgrade to Vista as it currently exists." In a couple of years, Vista may be patched to the point where it is considered worth upgrading, but those IT survey respondants are implying that they're not going to make any plans to upgrade before that point.

      In fact, I feel the same way about upgrading to Vista on my own window machines.
    • by codemachine (245871) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @11:01AM (#18884849)
      Thanks to virtual machine technology, we will never truly have to upgrade for hardware reasons. As long as some other OS supports the hardware, we can run Windows XP in the VM.

      Just think of how long Windows 98 has stuck around, despite the lack of new drivers and software support. And now with VMs, we could probably keep running it, and see it run quite fact actually compared to the hardware of its day (especially once 3D accelleration is added to VMs).

      I think the upgrade path for those wanting to stay on Windows XP could be a move to Mac OS X with Parallels, or Linux with Parallels/VMware/etc. Or possibly even just Windows XP runnning on top of a thin OS layer that provides just the VM.

      Though it is the lack of software support that will eventually get you, if you care about security patches and suport contracts. Though a large amount of new software still works on Windows 98 even today, I'm not sure that it has a supported browser anymore, now that Firefox will require 2K/XP or later. It still is handy for a VM though - a single user OS like Win98 that doesn't have a lot of network services is actually not that insecure when it is just a VM inside a real OS.

      I think WinXP isn't quite as suited for that sort of task right now, but there is a lot of development work going into XP and VMs, so we could see XP hand on even longer than 98 has.
  • Microsoft "hasta la vista" (TM) :D
  • by mumblestheclown (569987) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:50AM (#18883785)
    People: it's time for a bit of intellectual honesty.

    Either:

    A. Microsoft is a giant evil behemoth that has created for itself a permanent and insurmountable monopoly that needs to be curtailed through government intervention and snide slashdot comments. Microsoft could shiat on a brick and most IT departments would have to buy it. The agreements that it makes with computer manufacturers to pre-install its product, which typically costs about 10% of the actual cost of the PC, is fundamentally wrong.

    OR

    B. Microsoft is a company that, despite the existence of free-as-in-beer alternatives, has nevertheless managed for many years to become fabulously wealthy by delivering products that seem to be what the market wants. However, as this episode shows, they are neither invincible nor infallible - like all of the software giants that have come before them, despite at one point building an enviable market position, they will erode through some combination of changing technology, bad marketing / product decisions, and so forth. Furthermore, as we see from Dell's (among others') recent actions, computer manufacturers can and will tailor their operating system offerings as they feel the market warrants - Microsoft can no more afford to lose dell than vice versa.

    • Works for me :) (Score:4, Insightful)

      by NickFortune (613926) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:03AM (#18883957) Homepage Journal

      People: it's time for a bit of intellectual honesty.

      Oh goody! Can we start with the false dichotomies [wikipedia.org], please?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DevNova (24921)
      OR

      It's a combination of both. A company who started off by delivering what the market wanted and over time, found itself with agressive business models that took advantage of their position to further their market dominance.

      Indeed, it was Windows that gave Microsoft the monopoly. It's very difficult to build a monopoly on applications, but designing a GUI for a prevalent OS where its success is more or less dependent on being universally adopted? Yeah, you're going to take some pretty ballsy steps to ensure
  • Ignoring History (Score:5, Insightful)

    by ChaoticCoyote (195677) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @09:50AM (#18883789) Homepage

    The same things were said about Windows XP. And look where we are today...

    It might surprise the Slashdot crowd to know that *some* people like Vista. I do. I'm no MS fanboy, and I've cursed Bill Gates so many times its become a household cliche -- but the reality is, Vista is just fine. I use it every day, 10-12 hours a day, and my only complaint is the annoying slowness of file copies. Vista has a number of nice features that improve on XP.

    Will I upgrade the other four machines in my office? Heck no. The Linux machines will remain with Gentoo; the Windows XP and MCE systems will not be upgraded any time soon. That doesn't mean I hate Vista, or nor did it fail because 80% of my computers are staying with their current OS.

    Just like 2000 and XP, Vista works best on a new system; upgrading is always a mess, because vendors want to sell you today's tech instead of supporting what you bought last month. So the older systems stay with what works, and the new computer runs Vista (very well, I might add).

    It's popular and trendy to hate Microsoft and Vista; heaven forbid you should think for yourselves.

    • by Omicron32 (646469)
      My sentiments exactly. If I had modpoints, you'd get more than one.

      I like Vista. I moved away from Linux to use Vista. I've recently been looking at the development tools on Windows and, compared to their Linux counterparts, they're impressive. Ballmer was a dick, but his "Developers, Developers, Developers" thing was quite right.

      Windows offers some nice development tools and a generally consistent environment. It's much easier to develop for Windows than Linux and until that is fixed Linux isn't going to t
    • It's popular and trendy to hate Microsoft and Vista; heaven forbid you should think for yourselves.
      No, there's plenty of intelligent reasons to hate Vista too - UAC, poor security, driver incompatibilities, file-copy bullshit, file access times, and performance issues to name a few off the top of my head. If you look you're sure to find plenty more.
    • The same things were said about Windows XP. And look where we are today...

      I see a small difference between XP and Vista. XP require modest upgrades to function and there were significant changes that users would want. Vista offers small changes for most users on their current hardware. To get the maximum benefit, users would require major upgrades or new PCs. XP also benefitted from the people buying PCs for the first time. Five years later many people now own PCs and are not as likely to buy a new one

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by OpenGLFan (56206)
      It might surprise the Slashdot crowd to know that *some* people like Vista.

      Nope. Dude, the Internet gave birth to Furries. I am no longer shocked at what *some* people like.
    • The difference between XP and Vista is simple. XP was maybe not better than 2k, but it was not worse. It was shiny, it was teletubby'y, it was a LSD dream but you could turn it off and turn it into a "serious" system that way if you so desired. It was essentially as good as 2k, that's what people were bitching about: "Why switch, it's as good as 2k?".

      With Vista, you have a completely different problem at hand: It's actually worse than its predecessor. It runs slower on identical hardware. It has less suppor
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by painQuin (626852)
      hey, I hated Microsoft and DOS all the way back when it didn't support any of the fun things you could do in a posix style shell, like pipes and redirects and scrolling through your history, or (gasp!) color!

      I also hated them when their telnet app repeatedly failed to meet the standards of every other telnet app out there

      this is no fad. this is a deep seated hatred.
  • The CompUSA near me (Framingham MA), and many other CompUSA stores are closing. I was there last night. They had a cage, and another display packed full of Vista. All editions including upgrades, over 100 copies total, and they were 60% off. If you need Vista for some reason, a defunct CompUSA is probably your best bet right now.
  • Just Microsoft telling people who've clung onto the beta versions that they can keep using it without paying $400. And as to the 30% figure, there are a ton of companies still using Win2000pro.
  • Home Basic (Score:4, Interesting)

    by rlp (11898) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:00AM (#18883917)
    It would be interesting to see what percentage of Vista sales were for 'Vista Home Basic' (i.e. the bare minimum default MS OS that vendors put on new boxes). It would be more interesting to know what percentage of those boxes get wiped and have XP or Linux installed on them.
  • Interesting move. (Score:3, Informative)

    by ErichTheRed (39327) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @10:05AM (#18883997)
    Microsft knows they're going to get people to upgrade. Unless there's _major_ pushback from corporate IT, XP and previous versions of Windows will go end-of-life on their scheduled dates. When that happens, you lose patch and fix support, which means your desktops are unprotected. Any IT person who runs Windows knows that's a dangerous gray area. There are still a couple of die-hard places running NT4, but it's not for general use and the admins keep tight control over the system.

    So yes, Microsoft will eventually get their revenue. Dumping 17 years of Windows-based code and processes for Linux or any other OS is just too tough a sell in most large companies. I'm not a big Vista backer either, but you have to keep up with the times. I'm playing with it while supporting XP and 2003 in our environments. It would be foolish not to.
  • I'd love to switch to Vista, but I can't because Q-media, the company in charge of shipping Vista CDs for XP upgrades for Cyberpower, has taken my $10 shipping fee, and has not shipped Vista to me, despite a phone call and a promise to do so. What gives? Has anyone else tried to upgrade to Vista, but been stymied by 3rd party companies who aren't shipping disks?
  • Why is that indicative of "desperation"?

    For those not introduced, the beta/RC's are about to expire, and that was the plan since at least a year back or so. Now they're announcing the plan the people affected by this can follow.

    DESPERATION. :-p
  • We're throwing chairs at Crazy Steve's!

    "We're slicing prices on @#$!@%! Vista Home Premium!" [chair crash f/x]
    "We're slicing prices on !%!@#%! Vista Ultimate!" [chair crash f/x]

    Crazy Steve's... his prices are insane!
  • by Locutus (9039) on Thursday April 26, 2007 @12:02PM (#18886037)
    financially, this means nothing to Microsoft and the press given to this is worth more than anything. OEM pre-installations of ANY version of Microsoft Windows is what continues Microsofts massive profit gravy train. The fact that OEMs are forced to put MS Windows Vista on most, if not all, shipped units is all that matters and any discussions(press, PR, etc) otherwise is just a peripheral expense to make it seem like it really matters. It took over 2 years before businesses 'accepted' MS Windows XP even though there was a huge hardware upgrade expense and the EULA changes gave Microsoft 'legal' rights to extract information from every MS Windows XP system.

    So it is a waste of time/effort discussing if MS Windows Vista will fail or not and if there's any financial impact on MSFT as a result. They will keep extracting profits from OEMs for Windows Vista immediately and for Windows XP for the next few years. Only when OEMs and/or businesses start pre-installing Mozilla products and/or OpenOffice can there be any worthwhile discussions of Microsoft Windows productlines. IMO. Nothing else effects the monopoly control and gravy train as much.

    LoB
       

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