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SUA Deprecated In Windows 8? 226

Posted by timothy
from the how-does-being-assimilated-feel dept.
An anonymous reader writes "I just tried to install Subsystem for UNIX-based Applications (SUA) on Windows 8 Preview and found that it's marked as DEPRECATED: 'Subsystem for UNIX-based Applications (SUA) is a source-compatibility subsystem for compiling and running custom UNIX-based applications and scripts on a computer running Windows operating system. WARNING: SUA is deprecated starting with this release and will be completely removed in the next release. You should begin planning now to employ alternate methods for any applications, code, or usage that depend on this feature.'"
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SUA Deprecated In Windows 8?

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  • Metro (Score:3, Funny)

    by jdkc4d (659944) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @10:34AM (#37479734)
    I guess they want to come out with a new "metro"-version.
  • Cygwin (Score:5, Insightful)

    by paugq (443696) <pgquilesNO@SPAMelpauer.org> on Thursday September 22, 2011 @10:35AM (#37479744) Homepage
    Why would someone use SUA, which is only contains very old versions of the software it bundles? There is Cygwin, which is a much much better alternative. Sometimes, even MinGW is a valid alternative because it generates a native application (though it requires some porting effort, which may be unacceptable in many cases).
    • Re: (Score:2, Troll)

      by MetalliQaZ (539913)

      Commercial customers that require production-quality platforms with enterprise-level support probably will avoid Cygwin.

      • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward

        How about this? http://www.redhat.com/services/custom/cygwin/

      • Except Cygwin was perfectly in enterprise shops I worked in but they were just small shops like Sabre.
      • Commercial customers that require production-quality platforms with enterprise-level support are probably already using *nix.
      • Parent might be a troll, but it's also somewhat true. Plenty of organizations out there unwilling or at least reluctant to deploy anything open source when there is a Microsoft-supported option. The bias in favor of propriety supported solutions remains even when the open source version is demonstrably better.
    • Mainly because SUA is faster, since there's no translation to Win32 - it sits directly on top of the kernel.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Threni (635302)

      The installer for Cygwin is extremely simple and intuitive to use, andmakes remote, unattended installs a breeze,so you'll have no difficulties there.

    • by jandrese (485)
      Maybe when they want a simple ls to take less than 5 minutes to complete on directories with even a moderate number of files? Cygwin is horrible. It's slow, buggy, and in constant flux. I much prefer natively compiling with something like MinGW when I can get away with it.
    • Re:Cygwin (Score:4, Informative)

      by jensend (71114) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @02:08PM (#37482590)

      Look, I love Cygwin and have been using it since forever. But it's pretty slow at a lot of crucial operations, making it unsuitable for a large class of things folks use SUA for.

      More importantly, it suffers from a serious lack of manpower and direction. For a project which is so vast and so important to open source, it has alarmingly few active maintainers. The lack of maintainers is made worse by the fact that a considerable amount of maintainer effort is duplicated between cygports and the official cygwin distribution.

      Everybody uses cygwin but as far as I can tell very few people pay RH for cygwin support, and thus there are AFAIK only three people who are paid for their work on cygwin.

      The lack of manpower really shows. Crucial packages go for long periods without important bugfixes, and new releases take a long time to get ported&integrated from upstream. Development on the cygwin core is fairly slow. NT-based versions of Windows offered quite considerable benefits over Win9x (lots of additional capabilities and much less of a mismatch with POSIX -> better security and performance), but the first version to really take advantage of these benefits was 1.7, released for Christmas 2009 [slashdot.org]- 7 years after the majority of users (much less the majority of technical users likely to use cygwin) had made the switch. The developers had their first serious discussion about the possibility of a 64-bit version of Cygwin in June of this year; it will likely be quite a while before a 64-bit version is released. A lot of cygwin's performance problems could be fixed if the core developers weren't already overburdened as it is.

      Unless cygwin can attract a lot of new developers I don't think the project can stay up-to-date enough to continue to support the uses we all already rely on it for, much less be in a position to give SUA emigres a soft landing.

      • All I really use Cygwin for is a bash script interpreter. It's done a fine job of that, though it does take an abominable amount of time to start a console window.

        It lets me write cross-platform database installation scripts for *nix and Windows, but to be honest, that's about all the use I have for it at this time.

        I haven't even bothered updating the install in over a year. Why bother? It works.

  • by Hatta (162192) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @10:35AM (#37479746) Journal

    Cygwin or UnxUtils [sourceforge.net] work great.

  • I think Cygnus Solutions solved your problem about 20 years ago.

    • Re:Cygwin? (Score:4, Informative)

      by MightyMartian (840721) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @10:44AM (#37479872) Journal

      Have you ever actually tried to use Cygwin as a *nix-compatibility layer in a production environment. The word "kludge" doesn't seem to begin describe it.

      • I agree with you entirely - but the author is stupid enough to be relying on SUA so rather than that statement that "it is a kludge" I'd say it's a question of "is it a better kludge?".

      • by Andy Dodd (701)

        Yes. Where I work, we have a production load and test process for some of our hardware that depends on cygwin. We have had cygwin cause problems for us only once, and that happened to be on a non-production station. (Production stations had all their files on the local hard drive - this machine was performing some operations on LAN shares and the Cygwin issue was related to LAN shares.)

        Now the Xilinx ISE toolchain that was being called from our scripts hosted in Cygwin... ugh that's a whole other story.

        • And cygwin is massively crippled compared to *nix. Wherever possible, I try to get native user land ports, and if I need more advanced things, well, there happen to be a number of open source *nix-like operating systems out there. It's one thing to want to run sed on your Windows box, quite another to basically try to port over the entire *nix environment.

      • Re:Cygwin? (Score:5, Interesting)

        by sunderland56 (621843) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @12:29PM (#37481342)
        100% agreed. The commercial alternative - MKS Toolkit [mkssoftware.com] - integrates seamlessly with Windows, and is both more complete and faster than Cygin. Yes, it costs money, and no, it is not open source - but if you need to do Unix-like stuff on Windows, it actually makes life tolerable.
        • Re:Cygwin? (Score:4, Interesting)

          by Kaz Kylheku (1484) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @02:38PM (#37482912) Homepage

          100% agreed. The commercial alternative - MKS Toolkit [mkssoftware.com] - integrates seamlessly with Windows, and is both more complete and faster than Cygin. Yes, it costs money, and no, it is not open source - but if you need to do Unix-like stuff on Windows, it actually makes life tolerable.

          But Unix-like stuff itself is not tolerable, which is why it has to be reimplemented with GNU, Linux, Cygwin and other free software.

          For instance, how does the vi editor in MKS stack up to Vim? If the following link gives a more or less complete manual, it's freaking pitiful:

          http://www.mkssoftware.com/docs/man1/vi.1.asp [mkssoftware.com]

          Why would I pay money for that stuff if I would end up compiling GNU coreutils, bash, and other packages?

  • by eexaa (1252378) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @10:38AM (#37479800) Homepage

    Well, I actually failed to find a project that would really depend on SUA. Anyone knows about anything that would be harmed by this change?

  • This is how it is with microsoft. You cant rely on ANYthing from them - they can just shut down or bail out on you (bcentral, silverlight, soon .net), and you will have to spend a lot of time and funds to go around the pain they cause you.
    • by Sockatume (732728)

      I still rue the day they dropped proper MS-DOS from Windows. So much great software developed in that environment, you'd think they'd still be updating it today.

    • by Jerry (6400)

      We relied on FoxPro from the 2.5 DOS version through the upgrade path to Visual FoxPro6.0. Then, MS announced on the UniversalThread VFP forum that they were dropping VFP and set up classes on that forum to teach .NET, the "new" developer paradigm. They bestowed "MVP" badges to prominent VFP forum members who then played the .NET flutes that led the children out of the VFP villages. The outrage among a large number of the approximately 300,000 VFP developers, world wide, was palatable. MS was t

      • by beuges (613130)

        Now, it seems, MS has kicked the .NET/C# programmers to the curb, announcing that HTML5 and Javascript (??!!!!) were the "new" dev tools

        Hello, I am billions of dollars of enterprise backend software written in C# and .net. Can you please explain to me how Microsoft is going to phase out C# and convince the millions of C# developers to rewrite their enterprise software in HTML5 and Javascript?

        Can you explain to me how future versions of SQL Server, Exchange, Sharepoint, etc, are going to be written in HTML5?

  • by 0racle (667029)
    Other than the LDAP extensions SFU/SUA added to the active directory what else was really used from it? It seemed to me that anything else you would use from it would be better handled with a real UNIX or Linux install, either on it's own box or in a VM.
  • by jmorris42 (1458) * <jmorris@bea u . org> on Thursday September 22, 2011 @11:11AM (#37480270)

    Is this a shock to anyone after The Week of Windows 8 Hype? If there was a theme running through all of the stories it was this: Windows as you have known it is deprecated, a traditional Windows desktop will be available (certainly on x86, perhaps on arm) for those who are determined enough to figure out how to reenable it but don't expect it to last much longer. If Windows and native Win32 executables themselves are on the chopping block why would they have any interest in maintaining a UNIX command line layer?

    Win32 (and UNIX more so) isn't going to lend itself to the sort of app store lockdown Microsoft is moving to. If you have a choice of buy Win32 apps/games at Walmart/Gamestop and Microsoft gets no taste of the action or buy everything at the App Store and give Microsoft 30%, which do you think they are going to 'nudge' you toward? And by 'nudge' I mean turn your PC into an iPhone with hard crypto locks and remove all options that do not let them rake off their 30 points.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by roc97007 (608802)

      > Windows as you have known it is deprecated, a traditional Windows desktop will be available (certainly on x86, perhaps on arm) for those who are determined enough to figure out how to reenable it but don't expect it to last much longer. If Windows and native Win32 executables themselves are on the chopping block

      I think that's going to last about 6 months after Win8 release, and then they're going to realize that early adopters are putting keyboards and mice on their tablets and struggling to re-enable

      • That's like taking off in an airliner with holes in the wings and hoping that the stewardesses will pass out parachutes.

      • by Gr8Apes (679165)

        Some have stated that Win8 is stated to be a failure already as far as x86 machines go, based on the fact that companies waited 10 years on XP and skipped Vista, and are only now moving to W7. Companies won't be going to W8 anytime soon. Consumer PC purchases in the windows market are down, so who's actually going to go with W8? Tablets and phones seem about all that's left, and they're not running x86. (That means no W7 interface on those devices)

      • by rahvin112 (446269)

        The old rule was that there was always two reasonable windows releases for every bad one (win95, win98; winME), (win2000, WinXP, Vista). Now the rule appears to be every other release is going to suck. So though Win7 is ok, win8 appears doomed. That metro interface isn't going to fly in the corporate world where people are trying to get real work done.

      • by bluemonq (812827)

        "I think that's going to last about 6 months after Win8 release, and then they're going to realize that early adopters are putting keyboards and mice on their tablets and struggling to re-enable the traditional desktop"

        You do realize that Windows 8 is for both desktops/laptops and tablets? Tablet users use keyboards as well (witness the sale of keyboards for the iPad); the Metro interface is just a touch-friendly environment. It takes all of one registry edit to kill it permanently and switch back to all-tr

    • a traditional Windows desktop will be available (certainly on x86, perhaps on arm) for those who are determined enough to figure out how to reenable it

      "Determined enough"? You mean, like locating a huge (2x1) tile labeled "Desktop", with Win7 wallpaper for the background picture, right at the home screen?

    • by bluemonq (812827)

      "for those who are determined enough to figure out how to reenable it"

      Hint: Click on the tile marked "Desktop".

  • This is (Score:5, Insightful)

    by malevolentjelly (1057140) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @11:27AM (#37480490) Journal

    If you look at the kind of work Microsoft has put into the Linux kernel recently relating to Hyper-V...

    https://lwn.net/Articles/451243/ [lwn.net]

    One might gather that it's not worth the trouble for NT to ape Unix anymore. Chances are pretty good Linux is the new SUA and virtualization will be the new supported solution to this problem. I mean, why should Microsoft bother maintaining its own Unix tools when they're actively maintained elsewhere? Given the work they've done on both virtualization and linux integration I would say that there's no great conspiracy here.

    • I think you've hit the nail on the head. What's bothering me though are these draconian "walled gardens" that are continuing to be pushed onto us. What's bothering me even more is the move towards "leaseable" applications that if not in whole at least in part reside on a corporate server farm somewhere rather than my hard drive. Not only are we losing traditional ownership but the ability to use them is depending upon fragile infrastructure. They are creating huge vulnerabilities subject to the whims of
      • I always thought Microsoft could be unique from the likes of google, etc by doing just that. Take all the services google offers and provide them as microsoft server Apps. That way a business could have it's cake (all the cool web apps) and eat it too (have them hosted locally). I personally run an internal Windows SBS because I like all the capabilities exchange and a DC provide but I don't want them provided by some external service.

        Microsoft, if you're reading this, provide a real note app too al-la
    • by Jerry (6400)

      They didn't put that "work" into their code voluntarily. They were forced to do it because they were in violation of the GPL.

      • They didn't put that "work" into their code voluntarily. They were forced to do it because they were in violation of the GPL.

        I don't see how that has anything to do with virtualization being a strategy for Microsoft. Whether linux kernel drivers are packaged or pushed upstream is just an operational consideration.

  • I think this is yet another indication that SUA is pants and everyone should be using Cygwin.

    • I think it's another indication that anyone who trusted MS to support functionality that didn't directly benefit MS was a damned fool. When it comes to Microsoft, the only way to win is to not play. i.e. Don't buy their stuff, ever.

  • Windows-only shops may tolerate you insisting on SUA, because it's a Microsoft product.

    Start talking about CygWin or VMs and their eyes glaze over, they suck their thumbs, and moan "Wasn't on my MCSE, hippies will eat me, wasn't on my MCSE, hippies will eat me."

    I know that there's not really any significant difference in support terms (other than not getting the flakey almost-POSIX and BSODs that continue to burden SUA), and that they'd be better off switching to a native POSIX environment anyway, but t

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      Those people are all going to die of acute boneitis when they first clap eyes on Metro anyway.

  • by guruevi (827432) <evi@smo k i n g c ube.be> on Thursday September 22, 2011 @12:00PM (#37480952) Homepage

    They've killed it by only supporting the features necessary to re-share existing NFS services using SMB and AD. Integration of Windows with non-AD LDAP and Kerberos is virtually non-existent and requires a ton of work and 3rd party utilities to get it working. I don't think NFSv4 is even supported.

  • why support something that your new os's 'made for' or 'works with' branding program is designed to kill?

  • ...Which can be seen by viewing SUA based process in Windows's Task Manager.

    Do this:
    1. Install SUA
    2. Run KSH (the command line shell that SUA installs)
    3. Open Task Manager
    4. Change the columns so that 'command line' is showing.

    You will notice that the SUA processes have _wrong_ (corrupted?) information displayed. This is based on the fact SUA is a different _subsystem_ and stores process based information (specifically, command line information) in memory in a _different_ format than the _Win32_ subsystem.

    S

  • by Quila (201335) on Thursday September 22, 2011 @01:13PM (#37481872)

    I have never seen one instance of this actually being used in any environment from small up to very large enterprise.

  • VMware workstation running one of the many "live" distributions as a mountable .iso image.

No amount of careful planning will ever replace dumb luck.

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