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back to article Microsoft to end Windows 8 discounts on January 31

Say what you will about Windows 8; at least the upgrade from Windows 7 is cheap. Or it is for now. After January 31 will be a different story. Ever since Windows 8's October 26, 2012 launch, Microsoft has been offering retail Windows 8 Pro upgrade DVDs for $69.99. Online upgrades have been even cheaper, at $39.99. And customers …

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Re: Shooting themselves in the foot?

Well, I can see from the internet that the US doesn't seem to care about eternal discounts ("must end soon" being a permanent fixture on many smaller websites), but in many countries it's fraud to claim a discounted price when there's never a "full" price to discount it against -- the UK is one of these.

So what choice did they have? If they'd raised the price only in countries where they were legally obliged to do so, there would have been a backlash against "rip-off" foreign prices etc.

If they want to drop the price, they'll have to wait a while -- 3 months, IIRC in the UK, and it's unlikely to be much longer elsewhere.

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Re: @Eadon Shooting themselves in the foot? - yes, by releasing Win 8.

@Eadon:

"e.g. in 64 bit Win 7 you have both "Program Files" and "Programme Files(86) - and sometimes when hunting for a program (for, say "open with...") you have to search through one and then the other. It is one of many WTF's with the weird windows directory structure."

Exactly. They've taken an infuriating halfway house, by introducing "libraries" as a virtual folder (so that "Documents" contains the entirety of "my documents" and "public documents", and whatever other "X Documents" I have available to me) but not extended that virtual folder metaphor to the place where it's most sorely needed: the program folders.

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Linux

Re: Shooting themselves in the foot? - yes, by releasing Win 8.

"Where exactly is /home? I mean really?"

With apologies to Doctor Lizardo... /home is where you wear your /hat

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Re: Shooting themselves in the foot? - yes, by releasing Win 8.

I am going to fuzz over the self-replicating issue as I understand the concept of self replication and it doesnt matter much to the point I was making.

The point was the prevalence of Windows as a user O/S. If Linux or even Mac OS had the user market that Windows has, do you not concede that there would be some clever bastard out there that would find away of infecting these machines in the traditional sense ie Viruses. I never singled out viruses, I used the caveat of "viruses/malware" that slash in between in general stands for "or" not "and". If you go out and ask a regular user what malware or trojans are they generally give you the answer of virus. But yourself and eadon just focus on the word Virus.

p.s. By telling people to stop slabberinig on about ELF viruses, because they are executable code that requires someone to run them meaning that they are not self replicating, you are negating your argument because all viruses need someone to run them initially. Does that stop them from being self replicating???

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WTF?

Re: Shooting themselves in the foot? - yes, by releasing Win 8.

There are 'Linux' viruses, there are 'Linux' worms, there are definitely 'Linux' rootkits and malware. Sure, many of them require retooling due to the heavy fragmentation of the ecosystem, and they are often closed relatively quickly compared to how things work in the land of Redmond, but they exist. It is a highly targeted system because of its big iron presence, where have you been for the last decade?

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Wow

Charging like a wounded elephant.... or should that be lemming.

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Re: Wow

Charging like an angry accountant, more like.

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Anonymous Coward

This preloaded win-7 upgrade for $14.99, is that only if you bought something with it preloaded in the last few months before Win 8 came out, or is that any device with win 7 preloaded on it? At $14.99, might be worth a punt just in case.

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I think it's within the last few months. Which is sad, I have a few friends with netbooks with Win7 Starter on, wondering if it's worth suggesting the upgrade (or downgrade? :D) to Win8...

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Unhappy

Microsoft won't give upgrade prices to Win7 Starter owners. I also thought that WH8 with classic shell might be better than the crappy W7 starter that came with the netbook, so I tried to buy it, but the product key was rejected, with the clear indication that the upgrade offer wasn't available for W7 starter,

Oh well, I only boot into that crap when I need to access the office email from home, anyway. Maybe when they finally roll out exchange 2010 it won't be as crappy on a non-ie browser as exchange 2003 is.

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Happy

I upgraded the Win7 on my netbook to LMDE and it suddenly amazed me what speed you can get out of an atom cpu :)

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what about OEM?

it's 100 bucks for now and 200 for the W8 pro. Will it shoot up to 200 / 300? Oh well, I guess I'll give it a pass and wait for the next one, unless they keel over in the meantime.

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Re: what about OEM?

I don't think so -- AFAIK, there was never a special deal on the OEM version. But you might want to double-check pricing from your source. NewEgg has Win8 for $100 but Win8 Pro for $140. Those prices are at par with their prices for OEM Win7 Home Premium and Win7 Pro, respectively.

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Anonymous Coward

Not bad for £25

I upgraded to Windows 8. A bit quicker than Windows 7 and slight battery life improvement. UI is cleaner and speedier. Not bad for £25. Go for it!

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Holmes

Re: Not bad for £25

And were any of those speed/battery improvements measured? And if they were, was the speed boost anything you wouldn't see from a reinstall of the OS anyway?

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Re: Not bad for £25

I upgraded for around the same price. I'd pay double that for a downgrade option. Maybe that's a potential revenue stream for MS?

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Pirate

Re: Not bad for £25

Won't cost me a penny - I'm not going to want it, use it or buy it.

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So what is the cost to DOWNGRADE?

So I want to go from W8 to W7. What does that cost me? Maybe if they start selling downgrades for "less" (I want W7, not W8, give me back some money!) it might be a bargain!

When this whole thing hits the fan, a bunch of people are going to be not to happy!

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FAIL

OK, it may be the world's most security challenged operating system, but...

...at least after installing you can fire up the package manager and download your favourite apps!

Oh wait.

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Unhappy

The Windows 8 that came with my laptop(i5 & 8GB RAM) is soooo slow.

A piece of shit that is Windows 8.

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FAIL

Something is seriously wrong with your laptop then. Windows 8 works perfectly well on all of my systems ... and they are all somewhat lower spec than your Core i5 laptop with it's 8GB RAM.

System 1 ... Core2Quad desktop tower with 3GB RAM

System 2 ... Core2Duo media centre with 2GB RAM

System 3 ... Core i3 ASUS laptop with 4GB RAM

You're just trolling to crap on Windows 8 methinks. Troll fail.

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This is not a troll. My laptop is a Dell Inspiron, bought it 2 weeks ago ... my broadband is 100M with VM.

Starting any apps taking ages with the circular dots going round and round ... after a minute or so the app starts.

I had installed VS2012 ... starting it takes ages. However, once started then it's as responsive my Win7 laptop (2nd gen i5, 4GB RAM ... Lenovo).

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Zot
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Could it be an anti-virus or some protection software that's slowing it down?

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FAIL

hmmmm

If they gave you the option to loose all the stupid tiles and other metro crap and have a proper start menu (without pissing about with patches and hacks) i might have been interested as its actually quite snappy performance wise, but they havnt and its bound to be nearly 100 notes for the cheapo version, so i think il pass until its forced on me during my next laptop upgrade.

And why the blue blazes dont they listen to their customers?, noone wants a bastardised phone ui tacked onto the desktop bit on a pc, so why didnt they at least put the option there to disable the bloody thing? I, for one would have upgraded if they had, as im sure many others would.

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Re: hmmmm

Amen. The full screen interface does everything to stop me multi-tasking. On a Digital Audio Workstation you'd be happier to have something more minimal.

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Upgrade = Full

You can 'allegedly' use the upgrade as a full licence

Strategy 1)

a) Download Win8 prerelease beta from some torrent site

b) Use upgrade on that

Strategy 2) - more Lulz

a) delete your disk partitions and install your upgrade

b) now you have a copy of Win 8 that won't activate

--- with the stern message that your licence was only for upgrade purposes

c) now upgrade that inactive install with the same upgrade

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Re: Upgrade = Full

Have you tried either of these? I'm pretty sure neither will work, however the upgrade copy of Windows will quite happily install and activate on a clean machine.

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Re: Upgrade = Full

actually, there's a more LULZ worthy method to follow, which was what someone I know did:

1) have laptop/PC running a pirated version of Win7.

2) Get WGA to tell you "d00d you running non-original Windowz"

3) WGA will recommend buying legal Win7, or the cheap Win8 upgrade

4) Buy Win8 upgrade, download, install.

The Win8 upgrade won't care if your Win7 copy was pirated. MS is so desperate to get Win8 out there, they simply don't check if the Win7 was properly licensed or not!

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Devil

There was a cheap upgrade?

Sorry; I never noticed. I was standing in the queue to grab Windows 7 now that its still available.

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Trollface

Its not selling! Quick! Raise the price!

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Alien

It's inflation, Jim, but not as we know it.

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@Dana

I get your joke, but there's a serious point in it.

It's not selling well, and to help old Stevie B out it needs more sales. Put the price up at a defined point may tip those who were thinking "oh I'll maybe do it sometime" or "I always wait for service pack 1" over the edge, so there could (MSFT hope) be a sudden sales frenzy to get a license code and an iso before the price goes up, and tumbleweed follows other than new PCs from OEM.

The key is - lots of licenses shifted for the next earnings call. Long term we can put off for a bit. This is not a smart way to run a company.

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Re: @Dana

On the other hand - if they'd cut prices it would have been ascribed to the fact that they weren't selling enough

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Anonymous Coward

Wait

Given the reaction to win8, they are going to have to rush release win9 with the metro stuff pushed to the side and other aspects reinstated - if only to get the business community back onside. Therefore its worth waiting for that, or jumping ship to something else, rather than suffering the fisher price OS.

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Anonymous Coward

Dream on

Don't hold your breath... Julie Larson-Green is now in charge of the Windows division.

There will be more of that Fisherprice tile UI in Win9 (or whatever they wish to name it).

They genuinely believe that Metro is GOOD for office productivity.

Businesses are going to stick with Win7 for a long, long, long time.

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Anonymous Coward

Quick, man the pumps!

Bale man, I said bale!

But Captain, isn't the water supposed to go OUT of the ship?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Quick, man the pumps!

No wonder they're sinking if they're spending all their time baling hay.

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Two questions

Question 1. Can I buy the Windows 8 upgrade at the sale price before Jan 31st, and then apply the upgrade say one year later?

Question 2. If I upgrade my Windows 7 to Windows 8, and if I don't like Windows 8, can I go back to Windows 7 using the same Windows 7 license? When I say "go back" I mean in terms of license, not in terms of the technical work to reinstall Windows 7 (I can simply restore my image of Windows 7). Will the activation of Windows 8 on top of Windows 7 invalidate my Windows 7?

Thanks in advance for any answer.

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Re: Two questions

Question 1. Yes

Question 2. I don't know, as you say from a technical point of view it's fine and will work. I'm not sure whether your license to <del>kill</del> use windows 7 is revoked when you install the upgrade.

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Re: Two questions

Don't assume I know what I am talking about, but, if you were to use clonezilla or something similar to record a binary image of the hard drive including your Windows 7 partition and any boot partition/recovery partition would you not simply be able to revert to Win7 having tried Win8?

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Re: Two questions

Thanks, Fuzz and keithpeter, for your feedback. In fact, for safety I cloned (with True Image 2011) my Windows 7 system hard disk that is in my Samsung notebook, and that second hard disk is confirmed to be bootable after a hard disk swap. I am mainly concerned whether Microsoft might disable the Windows 7 system after revoking my Windows 7 license to which I apply the Windows 8 upgrade. I am afraid that putting the cloned Windows 7 hard disk back into computer might not work.

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still pondering spending $15

I am not a fan of win8 on my HP touchsmart, why would I upgrade any of my non-touch screens for $119?

oh and anyone can get the $15 upgrade, just say you bought the system yesterday on the upgrade site.

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Linux

Re: Upgrade to a more useful, sexier, *real* operating system. Linux

I'm not 100% convinced of the AV argument - and I think as more Linux systems become available as targets, the more it is likely to get aimed at - but nonetheless I'm a Linux user (Mint/Cinnamon for me, thanks) and was extremely annoyed at just how unpleasant the W8 experience was on a recently purchased laptop. Had I had the choice, I would much have preferred that it came with W7. In particular:

- I don't like being a guinea pig for new software without being asked;

- I don't like having to have a microsoft live account before I can activate the damn thing;

- I don't like having to use the signon and password from that throw-away account for my OS (and without warning, too);

- I don't like not having a choice of browser as mandated by the EU;

- I don't like having to decide that (e.g.) microsoft can't have access to my location services;

- I don't like having to remove the unwanted crapware that's installed by default;

- I don't like a faceful of advertising for services I neither want nor need;

- I don't like being unable to do the simplest task, like turning off the eye-candy animations;

- I neither want nor need pre-built shortcuts to social harvesting^w networking sites;

- In short, I don't like being presented with a cut-down half-usable version of an OS.

Had the laptop been supplied with a clean usable copy of W7 or W8, I would probably have left it operational; I do have a couple of legacy windows applications which get used once or twice a year. As it is, the W8, while still present on one of the disks in this machine, doesn't even appear as a boot option.

Had I been able to downgrade the installed W8 to W7, I would have done that, and left it bootable. But as far as I could discover, the only legitimate way to do that was to upgrade to W8 pro, then purchase W7 boot media, and *then* install it. Quite why it's necessary to pay for something I didn't want just so I can pay again I haven't quite worked out...

As I've said elsewhere, W8 may be the worlds most sophisticated operating system but it's *not to my taste*. The thought of paying half the cost of a laptop to purchase a license for it is simply laughable. I agree with Eadon: Windows is becoming more and more insignificant in the real world. If it works for you, enjoy it. Otherwise, consider trying one of the flavours of Linux - or all of them; they're all the same price: free.

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Linux

Re: Upgrade to a more useful, sexier, *real* operating system. Linux

Games, games and more games.

Show me battlefield 3 and world of tanks ( or their equivalents in the future) on Linux and I'll move. Until then, Linux has no place on my main desktop.

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Meh

Re: Upgrade to a more useful, sexier, *real* operating system. Linux

You don't want a pc, you want a game console ;)

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Re: Upgrade to a more useful, sexier, *real* operating system. Linux

"* No Metro - Linux Mint comes with Gnome 2 fork - Mate."

Yes, and GNOME sucks. It's the worst user interface ever. Even your hero Linus Torvalds thinks the same. GNOME 2 is a bit less painful than GNOME 3 but both are made by people that have no idea about Human Factors and UI design..

"* No need for an Antivirus scanner - Linux simply cannot catch a virus in the real world (ignoring daft hypothetical lab stuff that doesn't work in the real world), which is why no Linux viruses exist in the wild."

Great. The same can be said about Windows because the traditional viruses are a thing of the past. Modern malware consist of Trojans and worms to which a Linux distribution is also susceptible.

"* Secure (secure UNIX architecture)."

It's an illusion that UNIX which it's everything-is-a-file mantra and primitive file access controls is inherently secure. It took great lengths to actually make modern day Linux as secure as it is, and the sloppy development in many of its userland programs certainly didn't help.

"* Developed by the best teams. You do not get stronger than Torvalds at OS design."

Nonsense. Torvalds is certainly a very good developer but even he got a lot of things wrong in the Linux kernels, and there have been more than one really embarrassing flaws in Linux over the years.

And the best developers don't pay for free, they actually get paid for their work. And it's unlikely that most of them work on Linux.

"* Choice of window managers - use whatever UI suits you whenever you want."

Yeah, choice. Many desktops just suck, and it's not rare that the next version does things completely different. The greatest consistency probably comes with KDE. Linux desktops are a good example that quantity doesn't equal quality.

And if you need a touch UI then it gets even worse.

"* Better Server - Linux is the best of class server."

Most major corporations around the world most certainly would disagree, as their backbones runs on Windows, Exchange and ADS and not Linux.

But at the end of the day the OS doesn't matter (both Windows and Linux make for great server OSes), it's the applications that count.

"* No commercial licences, no licence management overhead."

Right. Unfortunately these are not the only costs that come with a platform choice. And in many cases it's simply more economical to pay for Windows than to use free Linux.

"* Brilliant command line available for power users."

Yeah. Same with Windows (ever heard of 'PowerShell'? Guess not). It may be news for you but Windows development has not stagnated since Windows95.

"* Easy to install"

Linux got better, but still doesn't match the simple installation procedure of Windows 7 or Windows 8. And there still are too many cases where an installation will just fail and needs manual intervention on the command line.

"* Out of the box Linux comes with LibreOffice, and many other applications. Windows gives you minesweeper."

Out of the box, Linux comes with a kernel, period. A Linux distribution may come with LibreOffice (which sucks donkey balls), though. Unfortunately the only way to run a proper office application is to use Wine.

Oh, FYI (since your Windows 'knowledge' seems to be stuck at Windows 95): Windows 8 doesn't come with Minesweeper (you can download it from the Microsoft Store, though).It comes with lots of other stuff, though.

"* User Friendly"

In your dreams. Aside from the desktop suckage, there are still too many instances where something doesn't work (even some very simple things like a OS upgrade), and too many instances where there are just too many (and often useless) changes between versions. For those users that can't cope with the new Windows 8 user interface, Linux will be the worst nightmare.

"* Runs fast on even old hardware. (Better memory management, less bloat, etc, availability of fast windows managers)."

Utter bullcrap. I guess you never tried a current Linux distro on older hardware, otherwise you had known that this results in a sluggish system which is a pain to use. Yes, Linux can be very fast on old hardware, if you strip everything out that makes a modern Linux distro.

And you have to be really obtuse to ignore all the what you call 'bloat' that is in every major Linux distribution for generations.

BTW: Windows 7 runs just fine on old hardware, and guess what, Windows 8 runs even better.

Yes, Linux is great (especially for embedded devices), but everyone who believes that it will come without major issues will be disappointed. The change between the various versions of most major Linux distros is even bigger than the change between Windows 7 and Windows 8, and that was the only major UI change in the Windows world since Windows 95 some 18 years ago. Your post is the typical fanboi-ism that makes a certain part of the Linux community as enjoyable as Athlete's foot. And of course you (like most fanbois) totally miss the important point that an OS is not a purpose in itself (and most certainly won't compensate for the lack of joy in your life), it's a means of running the applications you need, period. And at the end of the day, the majority of apps most people want to run are on Windows only. And when Windows not only runs all the apps they want but almost everything that is available on Linux, no-one with at least half a brain would move to Linux.

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