Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 10th Apr 2014 10:44 UTC
Windows

It wasn't meant to be this way. Windows XP, now no longer supported, wasn't meant to be popular. For all its popularity and sustained usage, people seem to have forgotten something important about it: it sucked.

The Ars forums are a place for geeks to hang out and chat about tech, and especially in the light of the hostility shown towards Windows 8, we thought it might be fun to take a look at how our forum dwellers reacted when first introduced to Microsoft's ancient operating system.

How times change.

Order by: Score:
I still hate it
by silviucc on Thu 10th Apr 2014 11:06 UTC
silviucc
Member since:
2009-12-05

I was using Win2K and then... this thing was unleashed. The horror... the horror.

Reply Score: 11

RE: I still hate it
by Priest on Fri 11th Apr 2014 06:11 UTC in reply to "I still hate it"
Priest Member since:
2006-05-12

Right, to the technical/professional users on Windows 2000, XP meant many of the same underpinnings but with a candy coating UI and that teletubies background.

To the rest of "everyone else" XP was an NT based replacement to Windows ME so it seemed amazing.

Reply Score: 2

RE: I still hate it
by REM2000 on Fri 11th Apr 2014 07:50 UTC in reply to "I still hate it"
REM2000 Member since:
2006-07-25

I agree i hated XP when it was released and i hate it now, good riddance.

I remember when it was released, basically take Windows 2000 stick a good awful UI on top and make sure it uses more RAM, HDD and CPU cycles than Win2K whilst providing the same functionaility.

To me Windows 2000 was a step forward from NT 4.0, XP a step backwards, i kept Win2K for ages until it just wasn't supported. I hated using WinXP but i did for games, at work i used WinXP x64 which seemed faster and more reliable (probably from being based on Win2k3 and being a little more optimised).

Hated Vista too many bugs / problems, however loved Win7 and love Win8.1 more so, the performance of Win8.1 is amazing.

I shudder when i think of the dark days between 2005-2009 when i had to use XP!

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: I still hate it
by Lennie on Fri 11th Apr 2014 10:10 UTC in reply to "RE: I still hate it"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

That is why I went from Windows 2000 to Windows 7 on my machine at work.

Obviously, Windows 2000 wasn't actually supported that long. I wasn't actually doing anything really scary on the desktop machine.

Basically, how I see Windows XP when it was released:
Windows 2000 was for the power user
Windows XP was for home users, who wanted similar improvements (NT-kernel instead of the older Windows 95-derived kernel).

I doubt many powerusers think Windows XP is so awesome. But it's the home users (and businesses that got themselves stuck in a corner) that now don't want to part with Windows XP.

Edited 2014-04-11 10:18 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: I still hate it
by tuaris on Sat 12th Apr 2014 00:45 UTC in reply to "I still hate it"
tuaris Member since:
2007-08-05

Exactly what I would say, but nlite made XP useable.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by joekiser
by joekiser on Thu 10th Apr 2014 11:09 UTC
joekiser
Member since:
2005-06-30

IMO, Windows XP wasn't really decent until the second service pack. I remember hating the way that they moved things around from Windows 2000, hating the Fisher Price Interface (which was a straight rip off of an icewm theme, except the original had round, lime green buttons), and the stupid search interface. Sure everything could be changed to look like normal Windows 2000, but much like the Windows 8 argument, why pay for something whose redeeming value (in this case, a dumbed down interface) was something you are going to get rid of anyway?

Then there was the Blaster worm and its cousins that made it impossible to install Windows XP with ethernet plugged in. You would install Windows XP and literally be infected before you rebooted to complete initial setup. This was in 2004.

Eventually, I moved on to XP (reluctantly, it took a lack of USB thumbdrive support in Win2k which was around 2007 or so), and came to appreciate it more. Cleartype fonts and more than 256 color icons were a nice addition.

Reply Score: 9

RE: Comment by joekiser
by Pro-Competition on Thu 10th Apr 2014 18:04 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
Pro-Competition Member since:
2007-08-20

You expressed my opinions precisely. It was only the lack of USB support in Win2K (don't even get me started on that!) that drove we to XP. And the first thing I did was turn off the stupid UI as much as possible.

I also agree that it was only SP2 that reduced the infuriation level to about where Win2K had been. (I've never been a Windows fan, so there was still more than enough.)

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by joekiser
by Luminair on Thu 10th Apr 2014 18:15 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
Luminair Member since:
2007-03-30

It sounds crazy now, but I too used Windows 2000 until XP SP2.

Windows 2000 was better and XP added unnecessary junk. Eventually they improved XP and app developers (and games) stopped supporting win2k. So I had to migrate. That must have been ~2005.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by joekiser
by NicePics13 on Fri 11th Apr 2014 09:02 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by joekiser"
NicePics13 Member since:
2009-06-08

Windows 2000 was better and XP added unnecessary junk. Eventually they improved XP and app developers (and games) stopped supporting win2k

Sure, but unofficially you can run "XP only" applications on 9x/NT; I still prefer win2k+usp5 for legacy gaming over win98se+usp3+kernelex - the former can be installed on AHCI drives but the latter has true DOS compatibility...
Except for getting antivirus updates I don't keep these kinds of machines online even though the risk is minimal with IE removed+3rd party firewall+modern browser and common sense ;)

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by joekiser
by vtpoet on Fri 11th Apr 2014 11:52 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by joekiser"
vtpoet Member since:
2013-12-31

Still use Win2000 in Virtualbox. Love it. It's lightweight, fast, and I can use WordPerfect and various other older Windows programs. Lighter and faster, in some cases, than the same software in Wine. Disable network connectivity.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Comment by joekiser
by bassbeast on Fri 11th Apr 2014 05:32 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

That is why the whole "You used to hate it" is disingenuous, because WinXP was really beta quality at best until SP2. before that the firewal was off by default, thanks to their needing it to be an upgrade path from Win9x there was pretty much zero in the way of security, it was just a mess. Most folks I knew at the time either stayed on Win2K (one of the best OSes MSFT ever made, Win2K, XP X64, and Win 7 are IMHO the best MSFT has ever put out with XP being a distant fourth) or stuck with Win98SE until they got a new system.

Of course one of the real strengths when it comes to windows is how easy it is to skip releases, in fact with the exception of a single netbox I had at the shop for downloading drivers I managed to avoid XP entirely, going from Win2K pro to XP X64 (which in reality was Win2K3 X64 workstation with an XP skin added) to Windows 7 without ever being unsupported. Sure I tried XP and Vista and 8 but they really didn't have anything to offer me over what I had (and in the case of Vista and 8 a LOT of drawbacks) so why go through all that trouble?

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by joekiser
by Lennie on Fri 11th Apr 2014 10:12 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by joekiser"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

"Of course one of the real strengths when it comes to windows is how easy it is to skip releases"

Which is different from Mac OS X or Linux in what way ?

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Comment by joekiser
by bassbeast on Sat 12th Apr 2014 08:59 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by joekiser"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

You will quickly become unsupported? Show me a distro where you can go 5 years on the mainstream release ( not the LTR, which should be called "We're not gonna backport shit" for how much Linux software won't run without the latest kernel, bad design IMHO) while skipping a couple in the middle and not end up EOLed? I know last I checked ubuntu gave you a lousy year and a half and they were one of the most generous, most gave even less.

With Windows I went Win2K to XP X64 (length of time 5 years) and from XP X64 to Windows 7 (length of time 4 years) without EVER being forced to upgrade or going unsupported. And that isn't even taking into consideration that MSFT has a standard 10 year support policy which is frankly matched by nobody, the closest being RHEL but to stay in support requires support contracts that costs several orders of magnitude more than a Windows license. I can't speak to Apple as i don't care for the company but from what i understand you are looking at half the support of the Windows lifecycle.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by joekiser
by Lennie on Sat 12th Apr 2014 10:02 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by joekiser"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

I'm sorry, but what software is tied to the kernel on Linux ? Proprietary graphics drivers and some virtualization stacks ?

Maybe you mean libraries ?

The way applications are packaged on Linux is an optimization, dynamically linking to the same library.

You can install different versions of the same library and your application will work.

On Windows and Mac OS X most proprietary applications come with their own libraries and don't actually use the system libraries all that much.

And when they do, users still need to have the latest version of Windows. Like DirectX games. When a game says you need to have DirectX version X, means you need to have at least Windows version Y.

Because most Linux desktops don't run old versions (upgrades are free) application developers don't take the time to make them work on older versions of Linux.

On Windows they are forced to do that, because a large part of the userbase is still on the older versions. So they do the extra work.

I don't see any technical limitations on the Linux side which prevents application developers to support older versions of Linux.

Package managers like apt might not be helpful if the library package has the same name and no version in the name (like libcap1 and libcap2).

As an example I just installed a library libcap1.deb from Debian Sarge released in 2007 on a Debian stable machine. There was no pain. I'm sure I could even use apt and apt-pinning to load the whole list of all packages of Debian Sarge and selectively install an application from that version on the current version (or the other way around).

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Comment by joekiser
by benytocamela on Sat 12th Apr 2014 18:01 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by joekiser"
benytocamela Member since:
2013-05-16

You will quickly become unsupported? Show me a distro where you can go 5 years on the mainstream release ( not the LTR,


I think it was rather funny how you wanted to conveniently disqualify right off the bat that which disqualifies your argument.

Anyhow. There is more to Linux than Ubuntu. Centos (Scientific Linux as well), Debian, SuSe, or if you want really stable and old school Slackware. All of those distros provide extremely long support cycles for old releases. Most of them free of charge even.

Edited 2014-04-12 18:02 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Comment by joekiser
by bassbeast on Sat 12th Apr 2014 22:25 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Comment by joekiser"
bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Because of the dumbass way Linux designs software you can't use LTR for shit? Go look at ANY major package, from LO to Gimp to whatever and see how many say "requires kernel x.xx" and good fucking luck trying to get it to run without a recompile if you don't have kernel X, and lets not even talk about the drivers which are so god damned fiddly that you have to have the EXACT kernel those drivers were written on or you get a buggy mess.

Don't blame me because linux is a badly designed mess friend. if you truly believe in it? Look up "The hairyfeet challenge" and post your video to Youtube. that challenge has been open for 5 years BTW, not a single taker, and it simulates just half a windows support cycle. Now if you can't even manage HALF the support windows gets without serious issues? then I'm sorry but you are not anymore of a mainstream OS than haiku.

And please don't bring up Android, that is a Google OS that they pay a billion bucks a year to support, desktop Linux don't even get a 20th of that amount in yearly support and it shows.

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Comment by joekiser
by oiaohm on Mon 14th Apr 2014 09:36 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by joekiser"
oiaohm Member since:
2009-05-30

bassbeast no application under Linux says its requires kernel x.xx all current Linux applications will run if you have a 2.6.34 kernel. Or in other words the oldest LTS kernel. 2.6.34 in fact will run systemd. Some applications that are directly about kernel control will disable features on older kernel because the features are not their but they don't fail to function.

Hairyfeet challenge cannot be completed. Mostly because there is a tech issue. Go install Nvidia or AMD closed source drivers direct from nvidia or AMD. Yes Nvidia provides a text based install that expects X11 disabled. Why with X11 load with Nvidia or AMD closed source drivers a kernel panic in will not display. So to install drivers under Linux you are forced to use command line due to install drivers due to the fact you need to be able to see kernel panics if stuff goes wrong. If you are using open source drivers for your graphical you can have X11 loaded and still see a kernel panic.

Now a video card driver under MS Windows that blocks Windows blue/red screen of death from being displayed cannot be Windows Certified. So Linux biggest issue is second rate closed source drivers.

When you first install a driver for a bit of hardware is when you are at the highest risk of a blue screen of death or kernel panic due to the hardware being defective.

Package management also failing to non graphical is also related to the same problem. When Nvidia or ATI closed source drivers install at times they can delete parts of the open source drivers rendering them non functional.

The fact kernel panic display works with open source drivers is not that Linux is badly designed.

Yes the same reason is why Linux world does not want to support binary drivers. Most binary drivers are very crappy on what they force on us.

Yes Linus swearing at Nvidia was very much deserved.

bassbeast go install ubuntu LTS go and straight up add zeroinstall/0install add the package groups from newer version of Ubuntu and debian to zeroinstall http://0install.net/pkg2zero.html

Then you will find out LTS versions of Linux are fully able to run all the latest applications without requiring the newest X11 or newest kernel.

People are getting themselves beat up because they are not using the LTS versions of distributions. The binary drivers are certified for LTS versions of distributions. You want applications not in the LTS version use zeroinstall or backports.

The hairyfeet challenge is just an excuse that you don't have to yell at video card makers for providing crap.

Edited 2014-04-14 09:40 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by joekiser
by NicePics13 on Fri 11th Apr 2014 08:47 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
NicePics13 Member since:
2009-06-08

it took a lack of USB thumbdrive support in Win2k which was around 2007 or so), and came to appreciate it more. Cleartype fonts and more than 256 color icons were a nice addition.

USB peripheral support is flawless in SP4, Cleartype and high colour icons can be bolted onto Windows 2000 quite easily.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by joekiser
by phoenix on Fri 11th Apr 2014 16:16 UTC in reply to "Comment by joekiser"
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

IMO, Windows XP wasn't really decent until the second service pack.


Exactly. The original release of XP was horrible, especially when it went into a Windows 98 environment where everyone was used to dealing with single-user systems. Dealing with multiple users, multiple user accounts, different permissions and capabilities for each user, not having access to everyone's files. It was a nightmare!

Granted, once everyone started to use it's capabilities and accounts properly, everything smoothed over.

However, it wasn't until SP2 that it actually became useful and easy-to-use and safe to use on a network.

At work, we managed to keep new XP installs to a minimum until SP2 was released. At that point, we had enough experience hardening it and configuring it to work with Samba and CUPS that it actually made our lives simpler than dealing with the aging Win98 systems.

And we kept Windows XP SP3 around until, well, we still use it. And will continue to use it for the foreseeable future.

We skipped Vista for the trainwreck that it was.

We're just starting to get Windows 7 properly integrated into our Linux-based network so we're okay with migrating slowly to that.

There's no way we're going to touch Windows 8 until the Start Menu update is released. I'm really hoping they keep 7 around for another 5+ years.

Reply Score: 2

Why. Win95 rulez.
by przemo_li on Thu 10th Apr 2014 11:46 UTC
przemo_li
Member since:
2010-06-01

Or at least You can not run dev software for those ancient engines at microcontrolers lat at my University. ;)

Though no support for modern browsers s******.
(Forget about loggin into gmail to send Your app to supervisor)

Reply Score: 2

Comment by GrapeGraphics
by GrapeGraphics on Thu 10th Apr 2014 12:07 UTC
GrapeGraphics
Member since:
2005-07-07

It started with Windows Mistake-Edition (ME), Windows Xtra-Problems and then Window Vistake.

Reply Score: 2

Short memories
by Luke McCarthy on Thu 10th Apr 2014 12:21 UTC
Luke McCarthy
Member since:
2005-07-06

I have been pointing this out myself. People have short memories.

Reply Score: 5

My thoughts about XP...
by leech on Thu 10th Apr 2014 12:32 UTC
leech
Member since:
2006-01-10

I too hated XP when it first came out. I still maintain that Windows 2000 was a much better product. Only reason I wanted XP is because I thought it'd support theming like linux DE's, but then it really didn't unless you wanted to use third party software (which slowed everything down and didn't work quite right) or use the msstyles hack, which wasn't really all that stable.

Windows 7 was the only (consumer) Microsoft OS besides Windows 2000 that I don't think left a dirty taste in everyone's mouth right away, and I think 90% of that is because Vista sucked so much, that ANY improvements were given big props.

Reply Score: 9

RE: My thoughts about XP...
by zima on Tue 15th Apr 2014 23:07 UTC in reply to "My thoughts about XP..."
zima Member since:
2005-07-06

Win2k also had teething problems (like Vista...) with drivers...

Reply Score: 2

XP was pretty bad
by Dekonega on Thu 10th Apr 2014 12:55 UTC
Dekonega
Member since:
2009-07-28

I was using Windows 98 SE at the time when the XP was released. XP was horrible abomination. Now that I try to explain how it's system requirements were out of this planet, and how it's security sucked big time nobody believes me. Yeah it introduced few important things like the Windows Firewall but it was not enabled by default.

XP became actually usable with SP1 that allowed to take advantage HDDs larger than 160GBs in size and the USB support was greatly improved. SP2 made it great by improving the security. SP3 was largely just a normal maintenance update that introduced few interesting speed optimisations.

XP, it wasn't always the smoothest ride on the planet, but it had it's moments. It's time to let it rest in peace at software cemetery.

Reply Score: 1

It _did_ suck.
by reduz on Thu 10th Apr 2014 13:07 UTC
reduz
Member since:
2006-02-25

SP3 was the first decent version of XP, I remember right after it came out, a lot of software would not even run without it.

Reply Score: 3

TemporalBeing
Member since:
2007-08-22

In all honesty, I do agree - I hated (and still do hate) the native XP interface. It's bubbly interface was just eXProfessional - very much something my toddler might want to use, but not me.

I stayed on Win2k as long as I could; when I did switch to XP, I immediately switched the interface back to Classic. After that, it was just like Win2k.

Reply Score: 4

WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

In all honesty, I do agree - I hated (and still do hate) the native XP interface. It's bubbly interface was just eXProfessional - very much something my toddler might want to use, but not me.


I feel the same way, and also about every new theme that came after it, including the Aero Glass abomination and whatever the hell they did to Windows 8. Just give me the grey 'Win32' theme from Win2k.

Reply Score: 4

TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

The Aero theme wasn't too bad - a big improvement over the native WinXP theme, so on Vista/7 systems (and server equivalents) I generally just set a color/transparency and be done.

However, what they did with Win8 is just wrong - a complete regression in interfaces back nearly to Win3.x era.

And WTF they put in Server 2012 is beyond me.

Reply Score: 1

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

And WTF they put in Server 2012 is beyond me.


Yes, that is the really weird stuff about Microsoft I really don't understand.

Reply Score: 1

bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

I actually prefer the Vista Black myself, IMHO the only thing they got right OOTB. It was lean, elegant, without all the bling or gaudy colors. I liked it so much when I got Win 7 the first thing I did was find a hack that turned Windows Basic into Windows Vista Basic Black and that is what I use to this very day.

So while I can understand preferring Win2K grey over Fisher Price Luna or God forbid AOL96 Metro? I just can't see using that grey when you can have the clean Vista Black theme on Win 7.

Reply Score: 3

schadfield Member since:
2012-04-16

I didn't even like XP with Classic Theme. You were left with the Luna icons which didn't look right.

One of the reasons I spent so much time futzing around with Linux distros back then was that XP was so ugly.

Reply Score: 0

O Whistler where art thou
by v_bobok on Thu 10th Apr 2014 14:48 UTC
v_bobok
Member since:
2008-08-01

Everyone loved WinXP?

Reply Score: 3

Comment by benb320
by benb320 on Thu 10th Apr 2014 14:55 UTC
benb320
Member since:
2010-02-23

Bliss.jpg

Reply Score: 1

Anachronda
Member since:
2007-04-18

All you're really doing is making me worry about future abominations that will have us looking back on Windows 8 fondly.

Reply Score: 6

ichi Member since:
2007-03-06

In a hypothetical future where most users were running Windows8 and refusing to upgrade to Windows9 I'd bet we'd get another of these "see, but you hated it back then!!" articles.

Again it won't be considered that maybe it just so happens that the hypothetical Windows9 might suck even more than Windows8.

Reply Score: 2

No, times haven't changed.
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Thu 10th Apr 2014 16:45 UTC
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

Reporters *always* listen to the most vocal segments on an issue. And those are always the losers in any change.

Windows XP was terrible at release for a minority of people.

Windows XP's death is now being protested by another vocal minority.

Most people were jubilated when XP was released, and they're happy now that its dying. Times haven't changed.

Reply Score: 5

RE: No, times haven't changed.
by TemporalBeing on Thu 10th Apr 2014 17:31 UTC in reply to "No, times haven't changed. "
TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

I would hardly consider 20-30% of Windows Users to be a "vocal minority", especially when Windows 7 users are at 40%, and Windows 8 users are <20%.

Reply Score: 4

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

First of all, I think you're off on your numbers. Those seem to be percentages of all computer users, and your comparing only windows 7 to XP. It makes more sense to talk about only % of windows market share and group them as XP vs Non-XP (versions newer than XP).

Using the numbers here:

http://www.netmarketshare.com/operating-system-market-share.aspx?qp...

That would end up with XP at aprox 30% and Non-XP at 70%.


To Respond bluntly to your objection:

Which part of vocal minority doesn't apply?

The minority ?

30 < 50

The vocal part?

Well, I'd agree not all of those 30% of computer users are vocal. But obviously they're out there.

Honestly it just kind of bugs me to hear people blame microsoft for their own poor planning. When you buy a windows computer and leave windows on it, you're putting your computing life in windows hands. You're at their mercy. It can be okay, as long as you understand that and plan accordingly.

Reply Score: 2

TemporalBeing Member since:
2007-08-22

First of all, I think you're off on your numbers. Those seem to be percentages of all computer users, and your comparing only windows 7 to XP. It makes more sense to talk about only % of windows market share and group them as XP vs Non-XP (versions newer than XP).

Using the numbers here:

http://www.netmarketshare.com/operating-system-market-share.aspx?qp...

That would end up with XP at aprox 30% and Non-XP at 70%.


So there still Vista out there, as well as NT4, and Win2k; and Win7 is known to have the lion's share of the Windows installations. So even if my numbers were slightly off, you've only backed up that I'm in the right ballpark.


To Respond bluntly to your objection:

Which part of vocal minority doesn't apply?

The minority ?

30 < 50


Even Win7 doesn't have 50%.

The vocal part?

Well, I'd agree not all of those 30% of computer users are vocal. But obviously they're out there.

Honestly it just kind of bugs me to hear people blame microsoft for their own poor planning. When you buy a windows computer and leave windows on it, you're putting your computing life in windows hands. You're at their mercy. It can be okay, as long as you understand that and plan accordingly.


Their own poor planning? Yes, I agree that's the user's issue and not Microsoft's.

But Microsoft hasn't helped anything in all this either.

WinXP SP3 is actually quite secure on its own, and quite stable for a release of Windows.

Vista was decent once you got drivers for it, but it was not very well optimized.

Win7 is Vista optimized and much improved - namely reductions in UAC notices, but as much of that can be attributed to improvements in software running on Windows as can be to Microsoft finding the right balance of it of UAC notices.

Win8, well that's just a disaster. For the most part it's just an improvement of Win7 - except for the Interface that put on top of it.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by frood
by frood on Thu 10th Apr 2014 17:30 UTC
frood
Member since:
2005-07-06

Of course they did. It sucked before SP2 and the computers of the day were way too underpowered for it.

Reply Score: 5

Remember the good things
by Verenkeitin on Thu 10th Apr 2014 17:55 UTC
Verenkeitin
Member since:
2007-07-01

My favorite feature was that animated dog in the file search. He always showed up happy and immediately got bored and displeased when tasked to find something.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pvxBQdvHGO0

Farewell you nameless unhappy search dog. You never got the same attention as Clippy, but you were just as useless.

Reply Score: 8

Shifting perspective
by atsureki on Thu 10th Apr 2014 20:17 UTC
atsureki
Member since:
2006-03-12

I've been reassembling old computers these past weeks. I just reinstalled 2k and XP in that order. 2k immediately looked beautiful and felt like home, while XP is still an ugly, junky mess with a stupid cartoon dog. It only comes off as clean and snappy if you turn on the Win2k theme and compare it directly to Vista.

My feelings are pretty much the same as when Win98 got EOL'd. It was a terrible operating system, but it sucks that there's no supported way to use my legacy hardware and software, because MS finally set a match to another one of its old sinking ships. What do we have now? Vista, 7, and 8, and only one of them any good. I'm reminded of when Google killed Reader and kept Plus.

Reply Score: 3

Humans have short attention span
by ronaldst on Thu 10th Apr 2014 20:42 UTC
ronaldst
Member since:
2005-06-29

What I don't like however is how some people are shaming XP users to have them upgrade. How about leaving them alone. They're happy with what they've have.

Reply Score: 3

bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Because thanks to the braindead "hey lets run everything at admin!" design of WinXP they are a botnet just waiting to happen?

If they stay off the net? Fine by me, hell run win3.11 if that is what melts your butter, but when all those XP systems run by grandmas that think that 30 day trial of Norton that came with the system is "protection" get royally pwned its MY Internet and YOUR Internet that is gonna suffer. Are you not old enough to remember Blaster? How the whole damned Internet slowed down thanks to the badly coded bug DDOSing the net trying to find new boxes to infect? Its not just YOUR net you are risking running an abandoned OS, its ALL our net that is affected.

Reply Score: 4

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

If they keep using IE on Windows XP it is also preventing us from moving to newer and better SSL/TLS and HTML/CSS standards.

Chrome and Firefox do still support Windows XP and will keep doing that. They don't have these problems.

Reply Score: 2

bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

Band aids on bullet wounds friend as it still doesn't solve the frankly unsolvable problem, which was that XP was built to bring the Win9X users into the NT family and as such the braindead "run everything as admin!" simply can't be fixed as way too much (I would argue the majority of consumer software for the platform) was written assuming it would be run as admin and just won't work any other way.

At the end of the day there is simply no way to fix this, its impossible. Folks use XP because their programs run on it but with a sane security policy in place their software won't run so they won't use a sane security policy. this is why Vista was as painful as it was, it had to be the OS that finally forced developers into using least permissions, but with so much no longer unsupported software running on XP there is simply no way at this late in the game to get a sane security policy in place, it just will never work.

Mark my words the next few months are gonna be a free for all when it comes to XP targeted malware. if MSFT had any sense they would offer the users the choice of Win 7 or Win 8 HP for $50 (and I would argue Win 7 Starter for $25) to get al those stragglers off XP, but sadly sense and MSFT haven't gone together in years.

Reply Score: 2

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Actually, there is a lot of software newer versions of Windows just don't support anymore.

As an example: 64-bit Windows doesn't support DOS programs. They say: use virtualization.

Which is a far cry from ideal.

Edited 2014-04-12 08:33 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Windows XP Pushed Me to Linux
by Peter Besenbruch on Fri 11th Apr 2014 05:25 UTC
Peter Besenbruch
Member since:
2006-03-13

It was the newly introduced DRM scheme, based on the specific hardware in your computer. This made frequent calls home to Microsoft necessary. I decided that was a good reason to explore alternatives. It took a year of exploring and learning before I finally got Samba working as a server. When I did (2003), I was finally able to transition to Linux, and stay there.

I want to thank Microsoft's monopolistic obnoxiousness for introducing me to Linux, and keeping me there. ;)

Reply Score: 1

Tractor
Member since:
2006-08-18

The linked article is plain bullshit.
And I'm not surprised to see the name of its author, Peter B., which basically suffer from many syndromes, including but not limited to, selective cognition, and Microsoft hate.

> The biggest problem with Windows XP was that it was Microsoft's first operating system to feature Product Activation,

AND THAT IS THE PROBLEM ?

Product Activation is now basically a hidden feature of Any modern OS with Cloud services support (Yes, including OS-X, Android, iOS and even Ubuntu, you are just not informed of it). If anything, it was a move ahead of its time.

I wasn't exactly keen either on that "feature", but using this forehead argument to conclude that "Windows XP sucked" ? Really ? Is it possible to look at WXP with a less encompassing view, only displaying cherry-picked side details ? And what's next, the colors of the default theme sucked ?

OK, I'm done, it gives ample information to provide good evaluation of the worth of the article and most importantly its author.

Selective cognition is not limited to Peter B., Thom is a big member of the community now. This is obviously a follow up of his previous article, where he felt alone in shouting "Windows XP sucked" to the world. From the myriad of articles available on Windows XP obituary, he selected this one, THE one which agrees with his definition.

This is becoming silly. I'll have to reconsider my list of favorite sites I regularly visit for news.

Reply Score: 2

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Actually, back when XP came out, which is the time frame Peter B. is discussing, Windows Activation was a source of much geek angst. It may be everywhere now, but in 2001, it was a big deal. He is not talking about now, but back then. Feel free to reread the article.

XP did suck in 2001, no amount of revisionist history, or insulting comments about Ars writers, will change that.

Reply Score: 4

benytocamela Member since:
2013-05-16

So basically your issue ain't with cherry picking per se, but mainly with the fact that the author did not pick the cherries you wanted.

Reply Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

AND THAT IS THE PROBLEM ?


Your caps, that's a problem.
Seriously though, it was incredibly annoying and everyone hated it. The fact that it has since become more common doesn't mean it didn't suck back then.

(Yes, including OS-X, Android, iOS and even Ubuntu, you are just not informed of it)


Ubuntu as no activation.

XP sucked and it still sucks. The fact that it was better than 95/98/Me and Vista does not mean it didn't suck.

Reply Score: 1

bassbeast Member since:
2007-11-11

What EXACTLY was "annoying" about it? if you had a net connection it took less than 20 seconds and if you didn't it took MAYBE 15 minutes by phone. At the shop I have handled more activations than many here have had hot meals and in all my years I ran into exactly TWO installs where I had to get a MSFT rep on the horn, and in both of those cases the customer had reinstalled multiple times in a very short period of time.

In the first case the customer kept getting a bug (it turned out his router had been pwned) and in the second the guy thought if he kept reinstalling sooner or later WinXP would get his ancient printer to work. Time it took me to get it straightened out? Maybe 15 minutes from picking up the phone to hanging up. No hassles, no accusations, honestly it was one of the easiest and most pleasant interactions with a large corp I've ever had, certainly better than dealing with Dell or Compaq support by a country mile.

So I really don't see what was "annoying" to anybody, you clicked through a couple screens and had it activated in seconds. Considering that Windows is the most pirated software on the planet its even that much more amazing how well it worked. Unless you are talking about being annoying to pirates, but then that was the point wasn't it?

Reply Score: 3

benytocamela Member since:
2013-05-16

Personally, it was really annoying (downright insulting really) that even though I had bought my copy of XP, Microsoft still insisted in assuming I was a criminal until I allowed my computer to phone them. It was made even worse by the fact that since I had shit internet at that point, I had to spend a big chunk of my day on hold with their activation department.

XP also started the trend of severely limiting what and how I could upgrade/modify my own computer.

All in all it ended being a good thing, because that experience forced me to find alternatives to microsoft's products when they made sense. Whereas before that I had been stuck in DOS/Windows monoculture, ugh (thinking back on it).

Edited 2014-04-12 18:16 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

What do you mean with product activation for Ubuntu ?

Reply Score: 2

BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

The linked article is plain bullshit.
And I'm not surprised to see the name of its author, Peter B., which basically suffer from many syndromes, including but not limited to, selective cognition, and Microsoft hate.


Oh, it's even sillier than that. At the time XP came out, Peter B. (or "Petard" as he is "affectionately" known by most who've interacted with him in the Ars forums) was probably one of the most die-hard, enthusiastic Windows cheerleaders you could ever hope to meet. His only competition for that crown were some fellow Ars-holes, like Paul Hill and Evil Merlin (though none of them could hold a candle to David K. "Mackido" Every as far as batshit-insanity went, but that's another story). And at that time, he was practically shouting from the rooftops that XP was the greatest thing since sliced bread.

So basically the article is nothing more than a thinly-veiled "I told you so," from someone who apparently STILL hasn't gotten over online arguments from more than a decade ago. And the funniest part is that Peter has done just as much of a reversal - if not more so, given his brief forays onto to the Apple fanboy bandwagon a few years back. Then again, I can't say I'm surprised - after all, this is the same brain donor who expended at least 10,000 words arguing against the firsthand knowledge of a developer who actually worked on Android (Diane Hackborn), with nothing to support his position but uninformed outside-looking-in speculation:

http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2014/02/neither-micro...

Even Tony Swash didn't possess that level of arrogant presumption & had the sense to slink away after the fist spanking he received:

http://www.osnews.com/thread?579269

Edited 2014-04-12 17:19 UTC

Reply Score: 3

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Name drop much?

Anybody can search ars forums and find and type random fanboys names from back in the day.

Reply Score: 2

BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

Name drop much?


Whiny passive-aggression much?

Anybody can search ars forums and find and type random fanboys names from back in the day.


BZZZZT, WRONG - try again. Don't worry, though, I'm sure if you just make enough clueless, uninformed assumptions, then you're bound to encounter at reality at some point (if only by accident).

Reply Score: 1

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

"Name drop much?


Whiny passive-aggression much?

Anybody can search ars forums and find and type random fanboys names from back in the day.


BZZZZT, WRONG - try again. Don't worry, though, I'm sure if you just make enough clueless, uninformed assumptions, then you're bound to encounter at reality at some point (if only by accident).
"

What?? The only thing I am assuming is that you think listing a bunch of ars forum members somehow give your statements power that they would lack otherwise, due to their lack of real meaningful information.

Oh, and look up passive aggressive in dictionary, maybe while you are there, you can look up the names of historical figures and insert them into your response.

Reply Score: 3

BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

"[q]Name drop much?


Whiny passive-aggression much?

Anybody can search ars forums and find and type random fanboys names from back in the day.


BZZZZT, WRONG - try again. Don't worry, though, I'm sure if you just make enough clueless, uninformed assumptions, then you're bound to encounter at reality at some point (if only by accident).
"

What?? [/q]

Uh, okay, let me spell it out for you - do at least try to keep up, I promise I'll go slowly and use words with as few syllables as possible. You were obviously trying to imply that I wasn't speaking from first-hand recollection (otherwise, why would I need to search?) - which is not only an unfounded assumption, but completely wrong to boot.

The only thing I am assuming is that you think listing a bunch of ars forum members somehow give your statements power that they would lack otherwise, due to their lack of real meaningful information.


So your "defense" is to clarify exactly WHICH unfounded assumption you were making? ...well, if nothing else, I have to give you points for a novel approach.

Oh, and look up passive aggressive in dictionary


When someone starts impotently lashing out by using lazy weasel-words/phrases like "anybody can" (even when it's painfully obvious that they're referring to someone in particular and simply lack the balls to say so up front), what would YOU call it? By all means, enlighten us.

maybe while you are there, you can look up the names of historical figures and insert them into your response.


Buwahahahahah! Try taking your own advice, son... in particular, you might want to look up the definitions of "dictionary" and "history text" (spoiler: one contains lists of historical figures & events, the other contains definitions of words).

Reply Score: 2

BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Look, your original statement seemed to find fault with not only what was written, but by who wrote it. That's my problem. I think Peter is uh..very bright, and i enjoy Ars alot. IMO, they are the best tech site on the web. Calling the author names for no good reason is in no way helpful, nor does it add anything to the discussion. You just dismissed the article because of it's source, and not on technical or even grammatical merits.

Granted, my response added nothing to the discussion either, but this continued descent into childishness doesn't do either one of us any favours. I should not have been such a dick, but sometimes a person feels like being a dick, and the internet makes it easy.

Reply Score: 2