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back to article Microsoft calls Intel's Windows 8 comments 'inaccurate'

Microsoft has said that recent comments from Intel software chief Renée James on the next version of Windows were "factually inaccurate and unfortunately misleading." At Intel's Investor Meeting 2011 at the company's Santa Clara, California, headquarters on Tuesday, James told her keynote audience that the upcoming versions of …

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Paris Hilton

So...

Will "Windows 7 Mode" contain "Windows XP Mode"?

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To be fair...

...MS has been pretty good at maintaining backwards compatibility. Have you seen the video going from Windows 1 to Windows 7? I thought it was pretty amazing to be honest.

I'm pretty sure that one could not do that with OS X and as for any given Linux distro I don't think it would work either (downloading source and re-compiling is cheating. :-P)

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@The BigYin

I completely agree; binary compatibility for the Mac goes back a decade at the most and requires the installation of optional components to do so. Obviously you can argue some virtue in that from the perspective of bloat and support, but the benefits of full backward compatibility are so obvious as not to need arguing. Microsoft aren't always 100% on the nail, but it says a lot that I can remember the only two times I've had problems, and the first of those was running a Windows 2 version of PageMaker on 3.1...

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Anonymous Coward

Yes they have but...

The Windows versions have all been running on processors that are backwardly compatible (x86).

If they are going to have backwards compatibility on an ARM chip then the ARM chip will have to emulate an x86 chip to run it.

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@AC

Not quite true; if I recall correctly then a PowerPC version of Windows NT 4 shipped for the PReP platform in a few extremely obscure ThinkPads that could run Intel binaries through emulation. Or my memory might be fooling me, and the emulator may have been an add-on, though I'm pretty sure it worked at the system level, to emulate the binaries but forward the relevant system calls directly to the native NT implementations. Or I'm just very confused indeed.

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@AC

"If they are going to have backwards compatibility on an ARM chip then the ARM chip will have to emulate an x86 chip to run it."

Really? I'm no Comp.Sci. grad, but surely it would be up to the kernel to translate whatever calls were coming through into what the CPU can deal with and back again? Or if not the kernel, then the virtual machine that is translating the byte-code.

And if something like that is not going on - how the heck does Linux manage to support AMD and Intel at the exact same time?

Even then, emulation/virtualisation would allow you to isolate the executing code from the underlying hardware.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The BigYin

> but surely it would be up to the kernel to translate whatever calls were coming through into what the CPU can deal with.

The compiled binaries will be for an x86 chip. This means they will not run on an ARM chip. An emulator will have to translate the x86 instructions in the old binary into the equivalent instructions for an ARM chip. How the kernel handles translating system calls is irrelevant (and trivial).

> how the hack does Linux manage to support AMD and Intel at the exact same time.

Because AMD and Intel are compatible on the instruction set they use. This means that, for example, the effect and the hex code for the POPA instruction will be exactly the same on both processors.

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Shaking the Trees

Apple does shut down parties with prejudice. One major change over the past ten years is PowerPC to Intel.

Thing is, if you asked Microsoft, they would express their envy that Apple can do this.

But, Microsoft is in a different business and moving the herd off of the obsolete is a problem. It means the efforts they make in improving user experience and apis are ignored by developers who have customers running the os from 2001. Plus, modern browsers are widely available and there has been a lot of work put towards improving the speed and power of web apps.

So, Apple has to do with this report, how?

If Microsoft is not looking at the ARM opportunity as a moment to somewhat break with the burdens of backwards compatibility, then that's it, the moment of negative mojo.

My guess, when Windows 8 on ARM rolls around, we'll find that Intel was more correct than incorrect, but it won't be a problem to adapt old applications to the new processor, beyond the work to address different underlying assumptions about speed, RAM, and responsiveness.

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Yes and no

Try this with a Navision Client!

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FAIL

LOLZ

Get the story straight guyz! How else are you going to pull the wool over our eyes if you don't stay on message?!

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Pint

Miffed Microsoft?

If you didn't want your lover airing your linens you ought not a'been seeing other people.

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Joke

Yipes!

I read that as "Milfed Microsoft".

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Joke

Milfed?

I read that as MILL-FED (think: Feed Mill)

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Gates Horns

Probably will...

Virtualization will allow legacy apps to run. If Microsoft doesn't provide it, a third party will.

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To virtualise or not to virtualise, that is the question

But virtualisation on the slower ARM chips will be dire, so I hope they don't try to include it in the OS.

I envisage an "app store" where low cost ARM W8 apps can be purchased (or repurchased) much like Apple's model. Those real old legacy apps will just have to stay were they are or die. As another poster points out, much of MS' pickle has been due to trying to be all things to all men - I mean apps..

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Or be hosted on a x86 Cloud

So what exactly prevents Microsoft from making a business from hosting them on Azure and presenting them to Arm presentation devices using Windows RDP (or other protocol of their chosing)?

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Black Helicopters

Exactly!

Every penny spent now on admins by any company can then be spent for Microsoft :}

Black Helicopters, they are out for me, or my job at least.

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x86 implemented in Javascript

Just the other day there, someone put together an x86 implemented in javascript.

It had the instruction set and speed relative to a 486, but is demonstratable running Linux.

Perhaps this could be developed and used as a cloud x86?

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Pirate

Hmmm

All i hope for is a more common sense approach to printers, sharing and logging on to the damn OS. All of those fail with Win 7

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Unhappy

FFS

I give up. I was looking forward to ARM windows not having all the ancient baggage. Now MS snaps back at Intel by saying not only will Win-ARM not run legacy apps, but Win-ARM isn't really Win-ARM. It will be multiple incompatible versions of Win-OMAP, Win-Snapdragon, Win-Tegra, Win-why-should-I-care-now...

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Welcome to ARM

It is the joy of allowing vendors to tinker with the system

On PC, the tinkering ended within 1-2 years from the start. From there it was all standard and all an IBM clone. That has allowed a single system to exist.

Arm, MIPS, PPC, etc are not there yet or have been artificially prevented from getting there. So it is natural to have a Win-why-should-I-care-now...

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Really?

What about Win-ISA, Win-VesaLB, Win-PCI, Win-AGP, etc?

Do you not think they're parallel to the SoC vendors wrappings to ARM cores?

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Thumb Down

Fighting FUD with FUD

Fighting FUD with FUD

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JDX
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Windows 7 Mode

Should W8 really need a W8 mode, are they re-jigging the underlying architecture again?

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@JDX

Based on Microsoft's denial and the port to ARM, I'm optimistic that they're deprecating some legacy stuff by relegating it to a Windows 7 compatibility mode. So they wouldn't be re-jigging the underlying architecture, just trying to push everyone more forcibly towards the re-jigged stuff.

Would an all .NET Windows with all or most of Win16/32/64 in a sandboxed, legacy support environment really be a bad thing?

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Anonymous Coward

.net windows?

You have seen the ballache and greif caused when .net gets trashed on a vista/7 machine havent you?

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@ThomH

"Would an all .NET Windows with all or most of Win16/32/64 in a sandboxed, legacy support environment really be a bad thing?"

Given that .NET runs on top of Win32 (or Win64, as appropriate), which in turn has to run on *some* kernel that can load third-party drivers which are currently all native mode code, your suggestion is about as realistic as running a Linux kernel on Javascript.

But anyway, would that be .NET 1.x, .NET 2/3 or .NET 4? They are all sufficiently different that you can't run programs targetting one on top of either of the other two, and you can uninstall any of the three without affecting the other two. In fact, it's a bit like Win16/32/64.

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Anonymous Coward

didn't say because

they don't know. Which is actually fair enough - they're still developing it. Makes Intel look all the stupider (and the more desperate) that they knee-jerked all that crap the other day.

Still MS now have a heads-up - think of all the Visual Studio licenses they can sell if they build in "transition" tools. Also, they'll be coding up an x86 emulator as we speak.

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Paris Hilton

Run all my old apps in Windows 7 mode?

Windows 7 Reality Version doesn't run most of my old apps. To be fair, a lot of old apps are DOS, Win 3.1, Win95 etc based but that doesn't give MS a license to claim "...ALL my old apps."

Paris, 'cause she too is rapidly becoming an old app.

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What legacy

On of the problems inherent with Windows is precisely because it's forced to run legacy applications. That translates to having to leave a lot of items in, just in case someone wants to run some twelve year old piece of software. Leave that to the virtual machines please, it's time they cut loose.

Do you count malware as being legacy? I would do so in my book.

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Anonymous Coward

Funnily enough

it was also about twelve years ago that a court agreed with Sun that Microsoft had polluted the Java standard so badly with its proprietary lock-ins that it was no longer entitled to use the word 'Java' on its products.

That's the only reason .NET exists at all.

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FAIL

Microsoft respose

So MS says that Intel mislead us, but won't "lead" us right, so we are all still mislead...

Great, that was really helpful MS, thanks! (Should we have expected more helpfulness?)

"You all think the wrong thing, and you are wrong and we know but won't say. Ner ner ner ner..."

"Oh I'm a PC by the way..."

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Legacy apps?

Aren't those the ones where the user had control.

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Almost

They're the ones still use in the Enterprise. Y'know, the folks who still use IE6 because they got systems coded to proprietary standards that can't be easily upgraded/migrated.

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Alert

What about WinCE/WinPhone programs?

Given that they're for the ARM architecture, one would expect them to run too.

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No

WinCE Programs don't run on WinPhone7 and vice versa, neither do they run on any Windows for PCs. Except well coded .net Programs which can be recompiled.

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Headmaster

@Probably will...

"Virtualization will allow legacy apps to run. If Microsoft doesn't provide it, a third party will."

Definately not.

The word you are looking for is emulation, not virtualization.

Virtualization runs most code native, intercepting only relevant system/hardware calls.

Emulation requires translation of every assembly instruction.

The difference?

Usually 10-20% percent performance penalty as compared to a factor 3-5.

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Emulation versus Virtualisation versus Translation

The vast majority of Win32 user mode applications can be translated at install time or load time, like .NET apps are. Anything without self-modifying code is trivial, and self-modifying code is both easy to spot (on a system that forbids data execution) and largely restricted to a handful of well-known libraries.

It's been done before, on Windows, translating from x86 to RISC. Microsoft almost certainly still have the code somewhere.

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Linux

Windows 8 - Viva la Windows

come on, the longer they allow backwards compatibility the longer you can use your old printers, scanners, games, software, etc. It makes "sense" to make everything require new hardware with the new software that way everyone makes more money off your "top of the line" setup that's 2 months old.

lol gotta love M$ always living up to their name.

Looking at 2 of my systems:

2ghz cpu, 2gb ram, Windows XP Pro: Handles 1 user freezes regularly

3ghz cpu, 1gb ram, Ubuntu 10: i've had a total of roughly 5 shell users, 100 remote users, 1 local user. never lagged. local user was using it as a desktop for proper tests (streaming video etc)

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Troll

*cough*

"2ghz cpu, 2gb ram, Windows XP Pro: Handles 1 user freezes regularly"

You might want to look at that then as that is NOT right. I have a few customers running perfectly behaved 1Gb Atom N270 machines they were given as thin clients as full XP systems now and they are beautifully quick and bomb proof. 1.8Ghz P4 with 1Gb ram should be perfectly useable.

Theres a difference between Shell users and RDP users, oh lets see, a slight lack of GDI overhead for one. I've seen 386 machines handle huge numbers of shell users.

Could it be you are just trolling?

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Keep your old computer, too!

If your scanner, printer, software are still good enough, why change the rest?

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Which portions are misleading / inaccurate?

We're all assuming they are referring to the backwards compatibility and / or inter-compatibility between the ARM versions.

What if M$ actually has a gripe with the statement that there will be a "working" ARM for each single ARM version ... AS WELL as a "TRADITIONAL" Win8 for x86's.

Or even worse, perhaps even the "traditional" won't be backwards compatible.

Or what else? Giving such an "open" denial could mean anything really!

...

So, M$'s response is actually: "Intel said some things which aren't correct. We WONT tell you what they are!" ... To be read in between the lines: "The things which are incorrect in Intel's statement is actually going to show up even worse problems!"

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WTF?

@Anton Ivanov

PC tinkering ended within 1-2 years. What?!?

8086, segmented 286, expanded memory, extended memory, 386 protected mode, virtual 8086, SMI, PAE, AMD64;

x86, Weitek, 8087, MMX, 3DNow!, SSE, SSE2, SSEinfinity, AVX, FireStream, CUDA, OpenCL;

ISA, EISA, VLB, PCI, PCI-X, InfiniBand, PCIe;

ST506, ESDI, SCSI, ATA, SATA, SAS;

RS232, IRDA, USB, FireWire, BlueTooth, Thunderbolt;

UHCI, OHCI, EHCI, XHCI;

CGA, EGA, Hercules, VGA, 8514, XGA, ... ... ... nVidia vs. AMD;

Shall I continue?

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Flame

Go on!

Pope Paul, Malcolm X, British politician sex

JFK, blown away, what else do I have to say!

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Funny how everyone forgets MCA

Bless the poor forgotten MicroChannel Architecture. Wee shame.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Funny how everyone forgets MCA

Yeah, they only remember Ad Rock and Mike D.

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Megaphone

.NET

Um... .NET is compiled to byte code, so Win8-ARM would just need to provide a .NET runtime to permit backwards compatibility. No recompilation necessary.

Oh, not if you've written your app in C/C++ of course, but they've been saying .NET is the future for close to a decade now.

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Re: .NET

Yeah, but the longer they keep saying it, the less likely it is to ever become true.

I can remember when Silverlight was the future of the web. If I try really hard and squint, I can remember when IA-64 was the future of PCs. I can no longer remember when Windows on multiple RISC platforms was the future. It was too long ago.

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C# vs C++

There's a lot of C# development going on out there, and has been at least since .NET 2.1

Just for fun, go to any large IT job site and compare the number of listings you get for C# and C++. Even discounting ASP.NET work done in C#, there's a lot of deman for .NET developers, which is an indication of how many (in-house, if nothing else) applications are developed in C#

(Personally, I prefer C++ out of habit, but C# and .NET can be quite nifty in many cases)

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FAIL

Look again, this time properly.

Observe that C# / .NET people command the lowest rates in the market, and are first on the scrapheap when the bear market arrives. It's a non-transferable skill; a career dead end.

Java geeks, meanwhile, are thriving.

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