Home > Microsoft > Microsoft: Not enough XPerienced PCs Microsoft: Not enough XPerienced PCs Eugenia Loli 2004-04-12 Microsoft 35 Comments While Microsoft is pleased with robust sales of new PCs that come loaded with Windows XP, the company has been less than satisfied with the rate at which large companies are installing its latest operating system. About The Author Eugenia Loli Ex-programmer, ex-editor in chief at OSNews.com, now a visual artist/filmmaker. Follow me on Twitter @EugeniaLoli 35 Comments 2004-04-12 8:49 pm Well I know of many business who are sticking to Windows 2000 for business because of usability and stability. Eventually these machines will move to Longhorn when the time is right. Most businesses simply don’t wish to invest in Microsoft’s technology. Then again they can also give them an “INCENTIVE” to upgrade like “Do so or it will cost you more for Windows 2000 technical support than XP support” 2004-04-12 8:52 pm yea. my sis has an HP 266 mhz pII running Windows 98 with no problem. So why upgrade if all the current apps can run on an old os for Home Desktop Users. In buisness its prudent because their older versions are more mature after a thorough release of patches and it does the job. If Microsoft was really serious about forcing people to upgrade they would have applications break in the older releases, having programmers use new only things. They sort of did that with visual studio .net which wouldnt allow me to install it on Windows 98 but they need to do it more to their OS if they want people to upgrade. Of course why am I even thinking of this? That would just make MS more evil right? lol. 2004-04-12 8:54 pm I’ve had instaled every Windows since 3.11, and XP is the only one that installed without problems, recognized all of my hardware, and it’s rock solid,fast with not-so-bad GUI. Still, for now I prefer Linux, but XP is quality OS. And I didn’t have to spend half day configuring my ISA sound card like I had to do in every Linux distro so far. 2004-04-12 8:56 pm I think most business aren’t buying PCs in bulk like during the dotcom era. The PCs they may have can run 2000 fairly well, but may run XP like a dog. Windows 2000 has matured and is “stable” enough for businesses to use it. I think once XP SP2 is released and run through it’s paces, the business that are moving from NT4 domains to 2003 Server Active Directory will run XPSP2 on the machines that can run it at decent speeds. The benefits with an XP client and 2003 Server Active Directory domain are to big to ignore if you have the hardware. 2004-04-12 9:09 pm Cut it in half and see how many copies you see then. 2004-04-12 9:15 pm Why does M$ think that companies will upgrade just for the h*** of upgrading? If you have an office computer, why do you need the latest version of Windows … 2K run just fine … its not like there is any benefit to the user … want the new eye candy, just get yourself the Luna theme using one of those interface improvers for windows (plenty out there) … 2004-04-12 9:17 pm If Microsoft was really serious about forcing people to upgrade they would have applications break in the older releases, having programmers use new only things. They sort of did that with visual studio .net which wouldnt allow me to install it on Windows 98 but they need to do it more to their OS if they want people to upgrade. Of course why am I even thinking of this? That would just make MS more evil right? lol. They do. If it says on the box that its supposed to un on 98 then its 98. I’ve seen things where older apps couldn’t run on Xp and i’ve seen it the other way around too. Sticking to an older version of windows is a good idea. The fact is its less of a problem the older windows gets, even with its unstability! The newer it gets the more shit is contained in it, longhorn leading the way. I’d say that as soon as windows does not fit their solution to their problem the Linux would be a good replacement. Infact it already is . 2004-04-12 9:31 pm Seriously Windows 2000 is all you need and it does not slow down to a crawl on older computers or require an upgrade of parts. Of course now I am going to here how someone is running XP Pro on a 300mhz pc and it runs “snappy” ! 2004-04-12 9:36 pm Of course now I am going to here how someone is running XP Pro on a 300mhz pc and it runs “snappy” ! Well, I’m certainly not running XP on such hardware, but I have seen it done. You can turn off a hell of a lot of stuff in XP that will make it run every bit as quickly as 2K, and except for a few minor details, it’ll look damned near the same as well. 2004-04-12 9:51 pm Aren’t most offices and companies leasing pc’s? Most companies and schools I visited always leased computers for a couple of years. And another problem is specialised software. Some special software that companies use limit the upgrade possibilities. 2004-04-12 9:53 pm Yeah, upgrading is a pain. I only do it when “forced” to, ie when support ends or when compatibility with the rest of the world gets bad enough. Voluntary upgrade is just a waste of time and money… 2004-04-12 11:19 pm Explain to me, why would the following people upgrade: * User A. A home user who bought Windows Millenium. The version is highly unstable, yet he paid for it and is unsatisfied. So he downloaded Windows XP Devils0wn from the Internet. * User B. A corporation with 20 top-notch desktop PC’s running Windows 2000 and the appropriate programs they need together with Windows. Virus-scanners, Office product, etc. They do not see why they should to Windows XP. * User C. A webserver running at a corporation. Due to the instability of IIS, they chose running Apache on Windows instead of IIS. They currently need redundancy and fallover for their webserver and wish to expand other (internal) services. They still have unused Windows 2000 licenses laying around and are considering a move to Linux. Again, why should these people upgrade to “eXPerience”? What can Windows XP do what Windows 2000 can’.? What can Windows XP do on the desktop and server side what a random Linux distribution cannot. And how do you think you can, from an ethical point of view, ask money from a customer who got Windows Millenium with his computer installed which is -as you might all be aware of- highly, incredible highly unstable. Time’s up. Release early, release often doesn’t cooperate well when you ask money for every release. 2004-04-13 12:29 am I’m with you up to about this point: Release early, release often This has in my experience, been the biggest cause of headaches while using open source software. I’ve seen things be released to end users far before they were ready, and its given OSS a bad reputation in many people’s minds. Releasing early is just a great way of spreading crap amongst far more developers than perhaps it ought to be. 2004-04-13 12:38 am If you turn off all the eye candy in XP you end up with an operating system basically the same as 2000. So why pay all the money to upgrade. 2000 does everything i need it to do,all new hardware i buy come with drivers for 2000, and all my apps run on it. So why bother with XP? Its the same situation for many other users and businesses. 2004-04-13 12:45 am Not what I meant, but an excelant point, nonetheless. However, with XP SP2, there will be some very good reasons for upgrading (I do not believe that Windows 2000 will be getting the Springboard technologies, though I could be wrong), even if its only to prevent getting bitten in the ass by Microsoft’s prior lack of quality control. At any rate, as it comes on most new PCs anyway, at least people buying new computers will see some benefit from it. 2004-04-13 12:58 am “However, with XP SP2, there will be some very good reasons for upgrading…” No. There will be more reason NOT to upgrade. More resource use is synonymous with “Less Bang for Your Buck”. The “Security” features added to SP2 don’t make it more secure, it just makes it more vocal about how insecure you are. 2004-04-13 1:04 am The “Security” features added to SP2 don’t make it more secure, it just makes it more vocal about how insecure you are. Please explain, I don’t follow your reasoning… 2004-04-13 1:07 am It is not about money for the licenses or about stabiliy or whatever Microsoft thinks is the problem that companies do not upgrade to Windows XP. It is about the upgrade speed Microsoft would like to see, but it is unlike that companies update that frequent! I am not aware of any company selling, producing, manufacturing, doing more business or anything in that direction; after an OS update to Windows XP. Microsoft has no viewpoint for their corporate users! Coroporations are not technical geeks, wich update/migrate for the fun of updating/migrating! If there is no real business need for an upgrade/migration, then it is normal to not do so. And Microsoft forgetts about how expensive an update/upgrade/migration is! And how time intensive such projects are. The financial situation of companies is not so great, that they can afford to switch to every new Windows OS. And it is not the price of Windows (they forced anyway alot of corporations to get the new license, where they pay anyway…), but the price for such big update/upgrade/migration projects and the potential of serval departements to be complete cut off, when something goes worng. As an corporate customer of Microsoft, you feel like hunted and pushed all the time. I would like to see Microsoft, to realize that most corporations are busniess driven and not OS driven! btw: This is as well an reason, why most corporatoins are not looking into the Linux desktop. Why change something wich works perfectly? 2004-04-13 1:50 am Look. Microsoft wants you to upgrade to its latest and greatest operating system. The least you corporations could do is oblige poor old Microsoft. It doesn’t matter that your existing platform suits you just fine – that’s irrelevant. What’s important here, is that Microsoft hasn’t got another desktop product coming out for at least 2 years, probably 3. That’s a long time between (licence fee) drinks. In such a predicament, Microsoft needs a helping hand – how will it survive the next three years with no desktop OS revenue? How will Steve and Bill put food on the table for their kids? Come on corporations help these poor buggers out – they neeeeed you to buy more of their stuff…. Oh, you don’t want it? Your happy with what you’ve got? Don’t be so silly… 2004-04-13 2:06 am $400. Maybe. Well, my three computers together might be worth $800. If I took them all and sold them on EBay. Why would I pay 3*$189 to upgrade them to XP? 2004-04-13 2:21 am Seriously Windows 2000 is all you need and it does not slow down to a crawl on older computers or require an upgrade of parts. Of course now I am going to here how someone is running XP Pro on a 300mhz pc and it runs “snappy” ! If you turn off the flashy skin, XP runs as fast as Win2k. Personally I think things like the newer, better Start Menu make it faster to use in terms of actual output, but that’s somewhat subjective. XP on a P2/300 wouldn’t be “snappy”, but it would be usable (assuming you had an appropriate amount of RAM for the workload). I’ve personally installed it on a Dual 200Mhz Pentium with 512Mb of RAM just for giggles and it was usable for web browsing, email, word processing, etc, although definitely slow. 2004-04-13 3:59 am Even with the new SP2, there isn’t a major need for companies to upgrade. Most companies have implemented their share of firewalls, network security, and virus scanning so that they minimize virus/security threats. They don’t feel compelled to upgrade. Home users are at the point where everything is “good enough” and they don’t feel compelled to upgrade (especially at the upgrade and new costs!). They will upgrade when they get a new computer, and that will be a while because hardware has far surpassed software in terms of performance. Pretty much any computer you have bought within the last few years will be powerful enough to last you for the next two to three. Most importantly, the upgrades cost way too much. When MS makes 80-90% profit margins on XP, you know they could cut the cost by 70% and still make a profit off of you. Most software in stores has, at most, a 5% markup (like games). Knowing they are overcharging is a good motivator to not upgrade. Especially in combination with the lack of new features (UI upgrades aren’t really a new “must have” feature). 2004-04-13 4:08 am Of course they’re not satisfied. Does anybody remember which version of Windows was a complete rewite and was the best version of Windows ever? Safer, more secure and easier to use. Or is that still to come? 2004-04-13 5:14 am I’ve never understood the backlash against XP… It’s almost the same as 2K, just a few more features and eye-candy. Some of the features are nice and add to productivity: 1) more wizards, like the clean up disk space wizard that pops up when you drop to low disk space available and leads user through options to free up space 2)command line is nicer with auto complete (I know there is a registry hack in 2K, but most people don’t screw with the registry). Better cut & paste UI. 3) No need for winzip anymore, automatic zip file management 4) no extra software needed to write to CDs, just drag and drop in explorer 5) System restore. This saved my ass on a couple occasions, users can rollback to “yesterday at 5:00AM” if they either jack up their machine or accidentally delete a file 6) the intention based UI features are nice, pop in a flash memory card with pictures and it will let you browse the pictures without having to load extra software. I make it look like Win2K anyway, so what’s the difference? 2004-04-13 5:17 am Another advantage of XP is the built in Remote Desktop support and the Remote Desktop client. Very handy for tech support or hooking into other machines. Most of the *nix weenies don’t even know about Terminal Services and still use that slows clunky POS VNC. 2004-04-13 9:46 am “Most of the *nix weenies don’t even know about Terminal Services and still use that slows clunky POS VNC.” Uhm that is even a part of 2K and NT. Please enlighten us *NIX weenies why your RDP protocol is so much faster and/or otherwise superiour than the RFB protocol. 2 VNC sessions with little compression set-up worked fine on 128 kbit upload so one would work with ISDN (64 bit) as well and arguably with 56k6 too (on which i’ve used RDP which ran OK). Please enlighten us why Windows is superiour to another OS which comes with RDP and RFB clients and servers. VNC runs on anything, from SymbianOS to *NIX. Last time i checked, open standards are prefered in heterogenous networks. “3) No need for winzip anymore, automatic zip file management” Not useful in an average corporate network. Plus, who said “Winzip”? 7-zip is FLOSS, supports more types, and is freely available. No buggering with notices about shareware software. The biuld-in CD writer doesn’t support the slightest bit of what a real CD writing program supports, so it is only a poor man’s solution. The backup abilities are IMO not useful either because you arrange that centrally in a big environment and in a smaller one just make an image and revert to that. In a good environment you don’t lose data because of that, especially not regarding desktops. IMO these features aren’t worth some $200 (as one put it) per computer. It ain’t a new OS either, it is a new _version_ of an OS. 2004-04-13 2:09 pm My point was that XP and 2K are almost the same, just a few more features in XP. Is it worth a $200 upgrade? Probably not, wait until you buy a new machine. I was just responding to all the people saying 2K is so much better. Yes, the terminal services client are available on 2K as well, but requires an install. All I can say is on RDP vs VNC is I found VNC to have problems painting the screen correctly and some issues with keyboard response. Those problems went away with RDP. And Also for customer support, remote desktop is superior since it’s on all the XP machines, no install necessary. RDP is just a more refined VNC (although in server version RDP doesn’t take over the whole desktop, it has true client sessions). Yes, the CD writing is very basic… but for movign files around (which is what you do in a corporate environment) it’s fine. And in the real corporate world, I’m sorry but everyone uses WinZip. I travel to dozens of Fortune 500 corps and that’s all I see. Just nice not to have to use it, again no big deal, just a nice obvious little feature. The system restore is hugely useful on the desktop. Most users don’t back up their system (esp the whole thing). One accidental delete and you’re screwed. Or you install some evil software that hoses up your system, just roll back (assuming it functions well enough to roll back). 2004-04-13 2:18 pm > Most of the *nix weenies don’t even know about Terminal Services and still use that slows clunky POS VNC. Who the hell needs a GUI to “hook into” another machine? *NIX systems have had rsh/ssh for years. 2004-04-13 2:21 pm > All I can say is on RDP vs VNC is I found VNC to have problems painting the screen correctly and some issues with keyboard response. You have to add “on Windows”. I’ve never had any problems like that on unix systems, just on Windows systems. 2004-04-13 5:21 pm IMO The VNC is so much better. 2004-04-13 5:29 pm I think that could be part of it. 2004-04-13 5:38 pm It’s all about ROI in the corporate world. Why should a company spend $XXX per machine to give them what they already have? XP doesn’t make older machines run any faster. It doesn’t make word processing, e-mail, spreadsheets any more faster or productive, so why should they upgrade? Companies will only bring in XP on brand new systems because that is what they come with. You don’t need an MBA or Ph.D to figure this out… 2004-04-13 6:37 pm //And I didn’t have to spend half day configuring my ISA sound card like I had to do in every Linux distro so far.// Your type kills me. A new, basic PCI sound card costs what … $10? maybe $15? Any linux distro would be able to find/configure a newer PCI sound card, no sweat. Skip seeing “Hellboy” and upgrade your system. 2004-04-14 3:24 am My scanner doesn’t work on Linux. Should I get a new scanner? It’s only about 100$, after all… I guess Linux isn’t that free, eh? Furthermore, zealots are bragging that Linux runs better on older hardware… That’s a stupid suggestion. Linux wouldn’t get better if the developers were saying “get something else!” when a piece of hardware isn’t working correctly. 2004-04-14 7:42 am Two words: product activation I’m mainly a Linux user, however, I also have a Windows partition I use for games. That partition runs Windows 2000 Professional, not XP. It’s not even that I had this computer built before XP came out–no, I had this computer built in August 2003, and bought Win2K then. I emphatically will not use XP solely because of the product activation. 2000 runs the games I want to play, and that’s all I care about where Windows is concerned.