Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 31st Aug 2011 19:42 UTC
Windows Over the past few days, Microsoft has been talking about improvements made to Windows 8 on its 'Building Windows 8' blog at MSDN. Strangely enough, the improvements mentioned were either dealing with the classic desktop, or were demonstrated using the classic desktop - and not the fancy Metro user interface which is supposed to be Windows 8's big new thing. Today's post finally gives a little more detail about how the classic and Metro UI work together, but questions still remain.
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RE: ...
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 31st Aug 2011 23:51 UTC in reply to "..."
Bill Shooter of Bul
Member since:
2006-07-14

Reminds me of the Gates Movie maker rant.

http://blog.seattlepi.com/microsoft/2008/06/24/full-text-an-epic-bi...

Reply Parent Score: 3

Gates rant
by justSomeGuy on Thu 1st Sep 2011 06:42 in reply to "RE: ..."
justSomeGuy Member since:
2011-08-30

Wow, that's a pretty hypocritical email. About the only complaint that might be a result of lazy/underperforming employees is that the website was slow. Everything else is down to the fundamental nature of windows.

It's basically complaining that windows doesn't have a dependency tracking package manager.

Someone decided to trash the one part of Windows that was usable? The file system is no longer usable. The registry is not usable. This program listing was one sane place but now it is all crapped up.


What's wrong with file system? Does he mean the explorer file manager? It didn't become too bad until vista I thought. But in 2003, he says unusable? Surely he isn't talking about the actual fs, because what casual users ever mess with file permissions, etc?

And complaining in 2003 that the registry isn't usable? Wikipedia tells me that the registry originated in 1992, so Bill is about 11 years too late here. The registry was always doomed to failure.

And last, about the add/remove programs thing, he actually has a point here. I have no idea how they managed to so royally screw this up between 2000 and xp. Maybe I have rose-colored glasses, but I don't remember things being that bad in 2000. But again, this is the result of not having something like aptitude.

And why is all this hypocritical? Because he's complaining about the things which are prime ways that MS uses to make money. Why should they make something like aptitude? They're not in the business of making it easier for people to get software on their computer with just a few clicks, and a nice roll-backable interface. Third parties have to be able to send out installers with exes that have to be run as root. They need to run as root to install copy protection. Bill wants to change this to make it harder for third parties to install their copy protection? Third party app lockin is a major reason many people need windows, and thus are sending money to redmond at all.

And where does a portion of this copy protection metadata get stored? In the registry of course. And MS allowed whatever exe to write wherever in the registry the user has permission, not in a dedicated registry directory for that app. This is, of course, partly to facilitate copy protection (the other part being complete stupidity wrt security), and what makes migrating installs of windows apps (and windows os installs) such a royal pain.

So did Bill send this out expecting a bunch of grunts to wave a magic wand?

"Let me get this straight sir, you want me to take on the responsibility of fundamentally changing some of the software paradigms which are necessary to third party developers, and therefore, our own business? After they've festered for all these years, getting worse and worse, making money for you all the while? No sir, I will not be the one to take the heat for that, and .... you're dumb."

But on the slow website and bad form validation, he probably had a good point. I only wonder if he was just trying to "discipline the troops", all the while knowing full well the truth? Or if maybe he seriously has no idea how the software actually works? Or maybe just in a bad mood, and not very good at giving orders? (Hint: don't give orders which are destructive to essential core of the company. Some naive employees might take you seriously.)

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE: Gates rant
by atsureki on Thu 1st Sep 2011 07:29 in reply to "Gates rant"
atsureki Member since:
2006-03-12

What's wrong with file system?


For starters, the massive depths you have to go to to change permissions just to allow yourself to see some of the files on it, and the opaquely named directories those files reside in. Basically, the fact that the OS itself has decided you're not allowed to modify things you might actually want or need to modify, not that you can tell because the file and directory names are useless.

Does he mean the explorer file manager? It didn't become too bad until vista I thought. But in 2003, he says unusable? Surely he isn't talking about the actual fs, because what casual users ever mess with file permissions, etc?


In Mac OS X, I can copy my home directory or ~/Library across installations and be completely migrated. In Windows XP or newer, if I try to copy my Documents and Settings or User folder, I get an endless stream of permissions errors. You need tools specially designed to work around the Windows voodoo. In short, you are not in control, because the filesystem is not usable.

And complaining in 2003 that the registry isn't usable? Wikipedia tells me that the registry originated in 1992, so Bill is about 11 years too late here. The registry was always doomed to failure.


Only because Microsoft names everything with hashes or serial numbers like Q329048, which, as Gates points out, is meaningless.

And last, about the add/remove programs thing, he actually has a point here. I have no idea how they managed to so royally screw this up between 2000 and xp. Maybe I have rose-colored glasses, but I don't remember things being that bad in 2000. But again, this is the result of not having something like aptitude.


I remember Windows 95 being unable to uninstall Red Alert from my mom's work laptop. She didn't use it for anything, so I played RTSes on it. She got in some trouble for that. The Add/Remove Programs pane is nothing but registry entries pointing to scripts. It's a tenuous system with many weak links, but yes, it used to at least look clean.

Reply Parent Score: 6

RE[2]: ...
by Gone fishing on Thu 1st Sep 2011 20:27 in reply to "RE: ..."
Gone fishing Member since:
2006-02-22

Here’s my Bill Gate rant experience.

I have a legal and fully updated Windows 7, I was living in Lesotho and now have a job in Kiev. I sell my old PC first taking out the hard drives and sell with a copy of Ubuntu installed – why ship a PC from Maseru to Kiev? – Nothing criminal in moving country.

I buy a new PC add the hard drives and boot – needless to say Ubuntu starts perfectly detecting all the new hardware although it is a little battle to get the 5.1 working on the new sound card. Windows is surprisingly easy (at least with the driver install CDs) the main problem being removing old drivers and associated utilities.

Next day I start up the box after a Windows update and am informed I have an illegal copy of Windows - I choose my words carefully here, not I might be a victim of counterfeit Windows; but that this IS an illegal copy. I click on the activate Windows and it won’t activate over the internet, but gives me the option to add my Windows serial no – which I do. I’m then informed that I have changed my hardware (true) and I need I can ring MS.

The free phone number does not work; the toll number takes me to an phone activation service in Ukrainian, which I don’t understand - I give up and go to bed. Next day I ring the UK number and am informed I need to key in a 50 digit number from the PC into the phone. This is tricky as the PC isn’t near the phone – I give up. Next day I work with my son as a team to key the 50 digit number, however, when I press the keys on the phone and nothing happens. I Give up and have a beer – I then work out that my phone is on pulse dialling and turn it to tone. I try and ring the UK number (an international phone call) nothing happens. I turn the phone to pulse (Ukrainian phone system doesn’t use tone dialling). Once I get through to MS switch to tone dialling and in a relay with my son key in the 50 digit number. Then MS gives me another 50 digit number which I write down on paper and transfer it to the PC.

Finally I have a now magically transformed legal copy of Windows.

So Windows is easy and usable – don’t make me laugh.

Edited 2011-09-01 20:29 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1