Linked by Stefan Michalowski, M. Sc. on Thu 19th Aug 2004 08:27 UTC
Editorial Lately posted on Slashdot, an article written by Joel Spolsky mentioned the trouble through which Microsoft went to make each version of Windows backwards compatible. In one case, for the game Simcity, they even changed the way memory handling was done when running that application. You can find additional stories of software tricks that recent versions of Windows have to perform in order to run these bug-dependant applications on the web. After reading the story, I discussed with a couple of friends how weird this was and how Free Software completely avoids this problem.
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RE:Is the Free way really better?
by Nolridor on Thu 19th Aug 2004 11:42 UTC

The free way in the moment is the better way I think. Lets look it this way: Microsoft just recently stopped (or will stop) the support for Windows 98 and NT 4 on consumer level. That makes 6 years of support and many pieces of software newly produced still run even on Windows 95. So Microsft is doing a great job supporting their old system.

Now on the other hand, if you go over to a website of a commercial linux distribution (lets say SUSE) you wont find support for distributions that old. SUSE only presents downloads down to Version 8 of their distro. And version 8 isn't that old, isn't it. So if you want support for older systems you need to habe access to the softwares source to be able to maintain the system.

Updating to a newer version of the distribution isn't an option in the average consumer level world.