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Microsoft Windows Technology

10 Years of Windows XP 471

Julie188 writes "Windows XP – the XP stood for 'Experience' — was released October 25, 2001. With Windows XP, Microsoft hoped to have one codebase that would span everything from consumers to corporate desktops. Microsoft was fairly ambitious with XP. There was an embedded version that went everywhere, from phones to information kiosks. Banks in particular embraced it as a way to migrate off IBM's dead-end-but-once-great OS/2. Consumers have been quicker to ditch XP for Windows 7 while businesses hem and haw and slowly test a decade's-worth of custom apps on Windows 7. Some estimates show that XP still has a hold on 48% of the Windows market."
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10 Years of Windows XP

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  • but that was all they had at the store; I was perfectly happy with XP; my hardware died and I didn't see anything I like with XP on it, so got one with windows 7 IMO, and in the opinion of everyone here at my office, XP was MS's best OS; most of us like it a lot more then windows 7 ymmv
    • by lgw ( 121541 )

      I'm very happy with Windows 7 now. Microsoft always moves everything between releases, and it always sucks having to (so pointlessly) learn where everyhting is again, and where the geek-friendly(er) UI settings are scattered, but now that I'm equally comfortable with both: Win7 is worlds better for everything except the file manager - somehow that has gotten worse in every release since 3.1.

      • by rwade ( 131726 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:40PM (#37838212)

        Win7 is worlds better for everything except the file manager - somehow that has gotten worse in every release since 3.1.

        Perhaps my single largest annoyance with Windows 7 -- and there are few, honestly -- is the file manager's sorting "memory".

        Let's say that:

        1. I have one folder that's full of spreadsheets in which the most relevant of them is the most recent -- in such a case, I would want that folder sorted by the "date modified" field.
        2. I have another folder in which there are files of a few different types with which alphabetical sorting is more appropriate.

        In Windows XP, if I set folder #1 to be sorted by the "date modified" field, it remembered it for that folder. If I left alphabetical sorting for every other folder, it remembered that too.

        In Windows 7, if I set folder #1 to be sorted by the "date modified" field, it applies that setting to any folder I should happen to look at.


    • by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:29PM (#37838058)
      I wouldn't say consumers were quicker to ditch XP because they wanted to ditch it. Typically consumers get new versions of Windows when they get new computers. Businesses on the other hand have to evaluate whether it is in their best interest and most decided Vista wasn't good enough to ditch XP. Some of them were probably a little miffed about the SA deals. Windows 7 is actual usable and stable compared to Vista.
      • Yep, saves $$$$$ on licensing too, the machine license is included with the machine so on like a 5 year cycle, everybody would run windows 7 in 5 years, but we've had to make exceptions to that and use open license to upgrade some. Expensive, but compared to the bs that was going on back in the day, this is just fine.

        • by Cryacin ( 657549 )
          Yeah, I work for a bank. They've been "evaluating" windows 7 since it was released in pre beta to them. We're still waiting for the holy IT dept of doom to give it's sanctimonious blessing that we may have something a bit more modern than XP. I for one, however, would be delighted if we *finally* could move from Lotus Bloats... Apparently the cost of moving to an exchange server was guestimated at somewhere around £100m.
          • that we may have something a bit more modern than XP.

            I'm sorry, but I just don't understand this "it is more modern, we must use it" attitude.

            As long as it does what you need done, WHY do you care how "modern" it is? The only reason I can see that "modern" matters is because of the idjits who also think "modern" is important and deliberately write software that won't run on older systems. I'm facing that because I run a server that uses someone like that's code. The important part runs on 2K, which I have a license for and the server runs just fine. The new

            • by Cryacin ( 657549 )
              OK. Here's one. How about 4Gb max of memory? Wouldn't be a problem if we didn't have Lotus Notes as an email client that chews up 2Gb of that, but we do. Plus 2x copies of eclipse (2GB), plus a copy of rtc (200mb), add a few word documents, the app I'm actually working on, the virus scanner, all the other corporate crap that's thrown on, and you've got swap city right there. If I were running a website liek the front office boys and girls do, then fine, but it's nuts that we're stuck with half hour compile
              • Yeah if you're a dev there I could see needing a more powerful machine. I thought in your first post that you were talking about the actual bank tellers.
      • by tsotha ( 720379 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:47PM (#37838268)
        This time frame also coincided with a big increase in the proportion of web apps businesses deployed for internal use. It's a lot less important to keep your machines up to date if you're basically using them as browser-terminals.
    • by ADRA ( 37398 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:34PM (#37838124)

      Windows 2000 was XP minus the play school look and feel (more or less like the classic look and feel on XP) and I think it was the last pure Windows OS that I liked without substantial customization.

      • by lgw ( 121541 )

        Pulg-and-play was crap in Win2000 though - over the strong objections of the kernel team (maybe resigned), MS crammed the Win95 plug-and-play system into Win2000 so that there'd be some possibility of using it on a laptop. It wasn't until WinXP that they soert out that mess. XP with the classic look was fine, though I've come to like Win7 now

      • Also minus the firewall, the fast user switching, the WiFi auto-config, the collapsable system tray, the System Restore feature, and a variety of other useful and user-visible features. I used Win2000 from 2000 to (late) 2003 as my primary OS, and I still have my laptop from back then (and it still has its 2000 install, though it gets little use now). It was a good OS for its day, no doubt about it, and XP wasn't that tremendous of step forward (although for some people, the theme-ability was a big deal). C

  • And yet, those recycling kiosks at the grocery store are still running Windows 98.

    • by mjwx ( 966435 )

      And yet, those recycling kiosks at the grocery store are still running Windows 98.

      Thats not the scary part.

      Most POS terminals are XP based. A lot of them un patched with IE6 accessible by simply closing down or alt tabbing out of Pronto (or similar POS software). One of the saddest things I have ever seen is a POS terminal with the Ask toolbar installed.

      This is why I refuse to run my card in 99% of stores.

  • by Pentium100 ( 1240090 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:19PM (#37837940)

    Compared to previous versions of Windows (especially those that ran on 9x codebase), XP was much better. Compared to Windows 2000, it ran games better.

    Vista compared to XP is worse, or at least it was worse just after the release. Windows 7 is about the same as XP, just a new UI, but it is not that much better for people to buy it (and probably upgrade their PCs), because XP is stable and does everything they want. The computer is fast enough for hat they use it for, so no need for an upgrade until it breaks down.

  • Of our four most used machines at home, the media center is running Windows 7 because I was told Media Center works better than in "Windows XP Media Center Edition". (Only partially true -- the surround doesn't work right.) My machine is running Windows 7 because I thought I needed more than 4 GB of ram. And then I found that the machine wouldn't boot with more than 4 GB of ram, so that was kinda a bust. (Maybe with a different motherboard?) The others are still running XP and the programs wife and chi

    • There's no problem with using XP per se, but I'd like if people would just please stop using IE on it, since it's basically the only OS/browser combination which doesn't support SNI, and which forces SSL websites to get a dedicated IP.

      • IE 9 fixes that. Leaving XP behind is a necessity as business users will never leave IE ever. But I doubt that would help.

        My fear is that your grandchildren who want to get to do I.T. 50 years from now will need to learn IE 6 racing conditions, minimal CSS 1.0 support, and many bugs for intranet apps still being developed in 2061 will still require IE 6 in run in 2 emulators ala COBOL is today. Major banks run 40 year old software with IBM 360 emulators still.

        I want to laugh but it is not fair to the poor s

        • by lgw ( 121541 )

          IE6 is quickly being moved intranet-only by sane businesses - there are several clever ways to keep IE6 around for the intranet but leave XP behind. It's such a security disaster that big shops have a strong incentive to get to IE9 for everyhting but legacy intranet apps.

          And I don't think there ever was a System/380. System/370 was the big legacy pool (which really started to die off after the Y2K scare, when businesses realized that "just works" can still be expensive), and System/390 was the next big IB

    • by Hentes ( 2461350 )

      If you want more than 4GB RAM you need the 64-bit versions of XP or Win7.

      • Thanks, I *do* have the 64 bit version of Windows 7, according to the media, and according to Computer -> Properties. I have four identical 2 gigabyte sticks and four memory slots. I put any two sticks in A1 and B1 or A2 and B2 and it boots up with 4 GB. If I populate one or both of the remaining slots, it won't boot. The manual indicates that the memory (Kingston) is supported and the motherboard supports 8 GB and more. (Up to 16 or 32, I forget.) It's a mystery.

        • Are those four sticks a match set?
          If not (heck even if) get cpuz or some other program that can read out the full contents of the spd for you and set the bios to the fastest common settings for all the sticks, if that doesn't work try the second most common.
          Of course the spd's could be slightly off so you might need to make tiny tweeks to the settings till it all works.
          Heck I've even had sticks w/ identical spd's that only worked in just the right slots, swap any two a
  • by Lord_of_the_nerf ( 895604 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:25PM (#37838006)'s just about ready for release now.
  • I still miss Windows 3.11 (for workgroups) on the desktop, and Windows NT 3.51 on the server. Sigh.

    • by bmo ( 77928 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:43PM (#37838234)

      I don't miss 3.11

      I don't miss watching Winsock eat itself in the debug window while connected to the internet.

      I don't miss the dumb Program Manager.

      I don't miss one crashed program taking down the entire "OS".

      You forget how clunky it is. Go install it in a VM.

      I also installed NT4 inside a virtual machine recently, out of misplaced nostalgia.

      Without stealing DLLs from Windows 2000 and XP, good luck getting any software from the last 10 years to install. It was like pulling teeth just to get Opera installed, and even then, it still complained.

      WordPerfect won't even install on 2000. No way, no how.

      I used to be a big OS/2 fan. I have Ecomstation in a VM. Yeah, I'm sticking with Linux and not going back to OS/2.


  • The story content was "XP wont die in the Enterprise", no it wont, and is you are in the Enterprise, you or your vendor can do a spin for your hardware ... no fuss.
  • by dpbsmith ( 263124 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:31PM (#37838080) Homepage

    I thought it was a pun on Cairo, [] the vaporware, or head-fake, or whatever it was that Microsoft claimed would be so great but never released... and that the claim that it was a reference to user "x-perience" was a later concoction.

    • by Phrogman ( 80473 )

      I dunno if thats true, but it sure is clever. Well done sir or madam. I can easily imagine developers giving it the nickname XP as a pun, then the marketers taking over and changing it to be "experience". Marketers are evil :P

  • by Toonol ( 1057698 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:33PM (#37838112)
    I have two laptops and three desktops in my household that are probably going to be running XP for at least another year. I don't want to upgrade one of them to window 7 until I'm ready to upgrade most/all of them to 7.

    Kind of the same reason I still use DVDs instead of Blurays, I guess.
    • "Kind of the same reason I still use DVDs instead of Blurays, I guess."

      Same here. Sure the newer stuff is technically better, but the old stuff is good enough. I'm primarily a Mac user, but there are things I need Windows for, and for me Windows XP is still the answer that makes the most sense. For example, I have an old TabletPC slate that I use for drawing. Win7 would walk like a crippled dog on it. Besides, I hardly spend any time interacting with the OS; I just load it then run my drawing program.

  • by nebaz ( 453974 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @06:38PM (#37838170)

    I remember when XP came out everyone was complaining about its online activation requirement. They said they would stay with Windows 2000, which didn't have that requirement. Nowadays, barring Windows 7, it's everyone's favorite OS. Funny how things change.

    • I remember when XP came out everyone was complaining about its online activation requirement. They said they would stay with Windows 2000, which didn't have that requirement. Nowadays, barring Windows 7, it's everyone's favorite OS. Funny how things change.

      XP took off when MS stopped offering any updates for (the only 1-year-older) win2k. Soon other companies followed suit and stopped supporting 2k for their software and it died abruptly while XP, with very few actual advantages beyond software support, took off.

    • I remember when Windows 2000 was released, everybody was harping on about its supposed "65,000 bugs."

    • by antdude ( 79039 )

      I still hate DRM like online activations, phoning home, subscriptions, etc. :(

    • by excelsior_gr ( 969383 ) on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @12:53PM (#37845788)

      Well, things changed for two reasons:
      1) the ones that used to complain are now tired of doing so, and
      2) the youngsters now don't know any better.
      Also, when XP first came out most of the people were still stuck with a dial-up connection. In addition, most were used to remedy their PC problems by re-installing the operating system. So when MS demanded that you should activate your software online and restricted the amount of activations, everybody frowned.

      Regardless of the above, switch back to the old model and everyone will still thank you.

  • Discovered two boxes running Warp on my network today, still being used in a mission-critical capacity.

    So yeah, good luck getting rid of XP!

  • Windows 7 is the new XP windows 8 is the new vista.

    windows 8 will bomb big time.

    • Windows 8 will bomb, but not for king of technical reasons that ME and Vista had. Win8 will bomb because MS decided to change shit around so much, that people still stuck XP may say something along the lines of... "I was going to replace my XP computer with Win7, but now that Win8 out, fuck it. I'm going Mac. I'm tired of MS moving the bar". I really think MS is slitting their own throat here with such an early release of -yet- another OS overhaul.

    • Windows 7 is the new XP windows 8 is the new vista.

      windows 8 will bomb big time.

      It will if Microsoft tries to cram that new Metro UI down user's throats. Methinks that sooner or later, they'll see the light, and Metro will be optional rather than the first thing you see.

      MS has made some really good things, but this reminds me of their past efforts to start trends that just didn't ring with the public (remember Win 98 first edition's "Active Desktop Channels"?).

  • Funny this story came out today. I just put a new hard drive in my desktop today and installed Windows 7 on it. I have
    been using XP since beta. Now its going to be a bit of a pain to migrate my data over. There's no 1-step upgrade path
    from XP to 7. Yes, I know about Windows Easy Transfer and will use it to copy the profiles over.

    The primary, and just about sole reason for the new OS?

    Battlefield 3.

    No XP / directx 9 support. It also supports Vista, but I tried it in the past and hated the performance.

    I have a

  • by drolli ( 522659 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @07:11PM (#37838532) Journal

    of about 15-20 Euro for an XP Professional license, its an excellent price/performane ration when it comes to selecting something for your VM to browse occasionally under IE. Most Software still supperts XP and the Hardware requirements are modest, so that its not a pain in the ass to run it just for printing, scanning, browsing incompatible websites, updating my phone, programming FPGAs or microcontrollers where the SW primarily supports windows.

  • It was a great operating system. I used to dual-boot between Win98SE and the original XP (in the pre-service pack days) on a 200mhz machine with 64MB of ram. 98 had the performance at the time, but XP had this rock-solid feel to it. I used it for development to avoid crashes, and played all my games and stuff over in 98.

    But times change. It's not safe to run as administrator anymore, and XP handed that out by default. Doesn't matter how safe you think you are about running potentially bad stuff or open

  • Consumers have been quicker to ditch XP for Windows 7 while businesses hem and haw

    That's not exactly true. Or rather, it's spun in this sentence in such a way that suggests consumers are choosing 7 over XP -- they are not. They buy a new computer, it comes with whatever it comes with. There's no informed, nor conscious, choice for the most part. Most consumers don't have the skills to find an old copy of XP, wipe off 7 and re-install XP.

    Businesses are making a conscious, informed decision. For the mos

    • We'll be using XP in some places until right before MS stops supporting it, especially on a lot of single-use hardware. We're just now transitioning to 7 for some users.

      The bigger transition is Office because of the XML file formats. It's just become too much of a pain to use pre-Office 2K7 versions.

  • The "borg" Bill Gates was much better than just the Microsoft name.
  • Happy birthday to you
    Happy birthday to yoooou
    Happy birthday dear XP

  • There are two types of operating systems.

    Ones that age ,and ones that mature.
    MS operating systems age.

    It's pretty sad the 10 years is a long time for an operating system.

  • by 140Mandak262Jamuna ( 970587 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @08:54PM (#37839556) Journal
    Microsoft had a nice coffin and a burial site carefully planned for XP. When sub 100$ notebooks with Linux appeared in the market and it was clear the designated successor Vista would not run on such puny machine, they hastily cut the noose and brought it down from the gallows and gave it another lease on life. Wonder what would have happened if that 100$ notebook had come after XP death process had moved too far to be rescued.
  • by transporter_ii ( 986545 ) on Tuesday October 25, 2011 @10:38PM (#37840296) Homepage

    You know, I've been totally against not "owning" software most of my life, but I now think the business model for MS is wrong. They should have two versions of Windows, the normal line of Windows they have always had, and a Windows Business edition that basically gets support, security updates, and the occasional service pack, but otherwise stays the same *forever*. For the Business edition, you have to subscribe (pay) to get updates, security, new drivers, etc.

    MS makes it's money from the next big version and upgrades. Imagine not having to have a new version rammed down your throat when what you had already did everything you needed it to do. It would be easier on developers (at least those targeting businesses), too.

    As long as MS didn't get crazy with the fees, I think it would be a happy compromise from the forced upgrade path.

    In fact, I think this would be a good business model for Mozilla as well. I would pay money just to get a stable version that works...and just *stays* the freaking same.

    It's not that I hate change. It's that I think they are forcing new features that don't need to be there just to stoke their egos. Businesses don't need that. They just need something that works and stays the same.

  • Ditching XP for 7 (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AftanGustur ( 7715 ) on Wednesday October 26, 2011 @03:30AM (#37841506) Homepage

    Consumers have been quicker to ditch XP for Windows 7 while businesses hem and haw and slowly test a decade's-worth of custom apps on Windows 7.

    Consumer's haven't been given a choice..Businesses do have a choice.

    Just because 90% of laptops are grey doesn't mean that 90% of people would buy a grey laptop if they had a choice.

"If it's not loud, it doesn't work!" -- Blank Reg, from "Max Headroom"