Linked by Thom Holwerda on Tue 9th Mar 2010 23:38 UTC, submitted by poundsmack
Windows "Few people understand Microsoft better than Tandy Trower, who worked at the company from 1981-2009. Trower was the product manager who ultimately shipped Windows 1.0, an endeavor that some advised him was a path toward a ruined career. Four product managers had already tried and failed to ship Windows before him, and he initially thought that he was being assigned an impossible task. In this follow-up to yesterday's story on the future of Windows, Trower recounts the inside story of his experience in transforming Windows from vaporware into a product that has left an unmistakable imprint on the world, 25 years after it was first released."
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RE[4]: imprint indeed
by demetrioussharpe on Thu 11th Mar 2010 00:36 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: imprint indeed"
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"Microsoft is just now catching up with where OS/2 was technologically in the 90's. Imagine if all the work that went into Win 3.1, Win9x and ME had instead gone into improving OS/2. It makes me sad.

Not saying there is no truth in that, but saying MS is "just now" catching up is quite a bit over the top. I used OS/2 from version 2 all the way to Warp, and used it exclusively. It was _far_ more advanced that Windows 1/2/3/3.1 - but that isn't really saying much at all (I don't really consider those Operating Systems, they are basically DOS shells with a rudimentary API)...

It would even say that from a purely technical perspective OS/2 2.0 was more advanced than any version of windows in the 95/98/ME series - but that technical advantage was never put to good use imo. The fact of the matter is that most of the native applications for OS/2 were mostly inferior to their Windows counterparts in both usability and stability, and there simply were not enough of them. I would say most if not all OS/2 users were using it to run Windows 3.1 applications - it did that VERY well - but so did Windows...

But to get back to the point - Windows NT 3.5.1 may not have been pretty and it may have been a memory hog compared to OS/2... But it was certainly technically superior in almost every way. Microsoft basically caught up with that release from a technical perspective - it just took them until until 2000/XP to actually complete the transition, mostly due to their own self created problems unifying the userspace/driver side of the equation with their Windows 95/98/ME releases (which while technically inferior were effective at introducing app developers to the Win32 API and getting them up to speed before the real transition to the NT codebase).

I remember OS/2 quite fondly, but still it had warts and LOTS of them. It was far from perfect. And from a purely technical standpoint NT was simply a much better design for the future - most of the perceived advantage of OS/2 at the time was simply due to its much lower memory usage - which was mostly due to the large portions of heavily optimized assembly code strewn all over the place. Over the long haul that advantage meant nothing - eventually the hardware caught up. And OS/2 was forever tied to x86 because of its tight coupling with Intel's chips (yes I know there was a PPC version - but it was never completed. Maybe it corrected alot of the earlier mistakes, no way to know really..)

I sometimes think Dave Cutler does not get the credit he deserves. There are many things MS has screwed up royally over the years - but the fundamental design of the NT kernel is not one of them. Consider the fact that it is STILL being used 17 years later virtually unchanged from an architectural perspective. Sure is has been refined over the years, but the fundamentals have changed very little. There is no way OS/2 would have been competitive over all these years had it not undergone radical redesign from the ground up...

You fail to remember one key point. The OS that became Win NT was originally developed as OS/2 NT. The change happened during development after Win 3.0 began to take off. Had it stayed as OS/2 NT, then it probably would've still had the same features or even been a bit more advanced.

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