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back to article Microsoft defends vendor standards lead

Microsoft has defended vendor-led standards and interoperability work rather than waiting for industry bodies to reach an open consensus. Sam Ramji, Microsoft director of platform technology strategy, said vendors with complicated products like, say, Windows that implement thousands of standards can quickly identify and solve …

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Anonymous Coward

Vendor Standards

So how far is it right to push vendor standards?

Is it right to get your affiliates to suddenly join standards voting committees to skew the make-up of the committee to be pro your proposed standards so you can steam roller your standards through even if they are far from perfect and haven't been properly reviewed as you used EMCA to fast track it?

Such behaviour brings the whole ISO standards process into question.

Which of course is exactly what Microsoft want - they want standards, their standards, imposed through leverage, threats and political corruption.

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Anonymous Coward

It is alive! Ship it!

"It's put into practice through vendors and community members and SIs and people who are wiling to make it work."

...giving us implementation-only monsters made from pieces that maybe Dr. Frankenstein would be able to put to good use, like the "Common Internet File System" also known as "Server Message Block"...

Citing http://www.ubiqx.org/cifs/SMB.html#SMB.1

"Without a current and authoritative protocol specification, there is no external reference against which to measure the "correctness" of an implementation, and no way to hold anyone accountable. Since Microsoft is the market leader, with a proven monopoly on the desktop, the behavior of their clients and servers is the standard against which all other implementations are measured. "

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Anonymous Coward

it's Microsoft, what do you expect

they have no interest in open standards and their stance that vendors do a better job is self serving. With open standards, Microsoft can not change the specs when ever they decide another vendor gets too good/close to a threat to Microsofts software products.

What gets me is that it is so obvious that Microsoft Windows is the tool used to push all other Microsoft software at the expense of Microsoft Windows application vendors yet they refuse to move their products to Linux where they won't need to worry about the OS getting constantly shifted under them.

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MS as Standard

"Since Microsoft is the market leader, with a proven monopoly on the desktop, the behavior of their clients and servers is the standard against which all other implementations are measured."

In much the same way as "tastes like dog crap" is a standard that chefs worldwide seek to rise above. I guess there's always someone at the bottom of the pile, otherwise there would be no pile at all.

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Let's examine some of Microsoft's "Standards", shalle we?

ActiveX - the easiest way to get server-side script to infect your PC with malicious software.

FrontPage - used to build Web pages that can be properly viewed only on a specific version of a specific OS, if the client is using a specific version of a specific Office package. Confused? OK, here: one of my users build a Web site using FrontPage that can be hosted *only* on a Windows 2000 server, and can be properly viewed *only* on IE 6 or later and *only* if the client has MS Office 2000 installed. Won't work on Office 97, nor on Office 2003, nor on Office 2007.

WMA and WMV - yeah, those are real "standards," aren't they?

NTFS - which varies according to which version of Windows was used to format the drive.

Anyone else want to play?

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Microsoft non-standards.

I'd agree with MS's stance (down boys) if it wasn't for the fact that they have a poor track record at publishing their "standards"... and even when they do, they have a tendency to keep the good bits to themselves.

Anyone remember the myriads of hidden APIs that MS used to make its product respond better than the competition? And they want us to believe they won't repeat this oft-done tactic in the future? Does Amanfrommars use proper punctiuation?

I thought not.

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Silver badge

Hmmmm

'"Vendors tend to lead and standards bodies to follow, communities tend to lead and standards bodies tend to follow," Ramji said...'

That may be what he said, but in practice what Microsoft wants is for ONE vendor to lead. Namely itself. Other vendors can go pound sand.

The general point is quite fair. In fact, one of the key things learned from a couple of decades of producing and refining IT standards is that the best way is usually not for a bunch of experts to sit down round a table and start thinking from scratch. Often the best results are attained when one or more vendors offer their viable, working software as a template for a new standard. OMG, for example, insists that all its specifications must be implemented in working software before it even considers adopting them.

But the process must be fair and open, not heavily biased in favour of one or two huge vendors.

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