back to article Microsoft totters from time machine clutching Windows 10 Workstation

It looks like the 1990s are back in fashion: Microsoft is, it seems, preparing another flavor of Windows 10 – the tentatively named Windows 10 Pro for Workstations. We can't help but be reminded of the Windows NT Workstation era in the early 1990s – the branding Microsoft used to distance Windows for beefy work PCs from …

Re: Linux and all its variants.

Oh and Windows 3.2 was the Chinese Windows 3.1.

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FAIL

Re: Linux and all its variants.

"No, any Linux distro has only "versions" for CPU type. The actual OS is the same."

Not that simple. RHEL has similarly crippled their "single user products" to 1 or 2 CPU sockets and limited memory access. Evil?

"Then with Vista they started the EVIL "home" vs "pro" workstations."

XP introduced Home and Pro versions, not Vista.

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Alert

Next thing you know IBM will be dusting off OS/2 Warp

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Novell Netware 3.11 for me please.

I still miss proper file versioning - the move from a proper File Server OS to Windows NT 4.0 was a shock.

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For a current OS/2 Warp(ish), see:

ArcaOS

ElReg has written an article on the subject.

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Joke

"Next thing you know IBM will be dusting off OS/2 Warp"

The're probably thinking about it. They need to try to make some dosh somewhere.

'They'll probably call it OS/2 Pedestrian in keeping with current company travel policy.

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Anonymous Coward

Joke icon missing?

https://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/1/2017/05/19/new_version_of_os_2_arca_os_5/

OS/2 warp IS back out and it is quite possible that this is the reason for the release of workstation.

Remember OS/2 runs windows code natively and who are you going to trust with your business, M$ who screwed over everybody they ever worked with or IBM.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Joke icon missing?

Remember OS/2 runs windows code natively and who are you going to trust with your business, M$ who screwed over everybody they ever worked with or IBM.

Not much of a choice. The only thing you could say is while MS are smarmy assholes, they're at least *COMPETENT* assholes (for the most part). Haven't been able to say that about IBM for 20 or so years now.

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4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

and Windows 10 will still think it is a fucking phone.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

"and Windows 10 will still think it is a fucking phone."

Bing!

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Def
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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

One day not too long from now your phone will have 88 cores and 6TB of RAM, and Windows will pretty much work the same way it does today.

Whether you like Windows (10) or not is largely irrelevant. Microsoft have a long term plan which will allow you to run the same software on any device regardless of its size. Something I don't see Apple or Google doing any time soon.

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Stop

@Def: Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

Def,

you do realise that there are a number of reasons WHY MS (and not Google/Apple) are determined that the victims (sorry, customers) should be able to run an app on their desktop or their phone...

They think there is a substantial benefit to their 'customers'.

I think they are even more deluded than usual - and that is saying something...

Cheers,

Jay

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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

But will it run Crysis?

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Gimp

Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

"Microsoft have a long term plan..."

And there goes any remaining credibility to the rest of your post.

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Meh

Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

But will it run Windows- ie more than one fullscreen...

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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

"One day not too long from now your phone will have 88 cores and 6TB of RAM, and Windows will pretty much work the same way it does today."

The users will still be complaining it is soooooo slow.

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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

But will it run Windows- ie more than one fullscreen...

That's already in the mix. Not sure if the Insiders have it yet, but it's here shortly. You just need to connect your phone to a bigger screen.

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Coat

Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

@AC:

"and Windows 10 will still think it is a fucking phone."

Bing!

Dear god no. DuckDuckGo.

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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

"Microsoft have a long term plan"

Well that is a lol to start with. Microsoft had a plan to get into the mobile OS business by abusing their captive desktop OS users. They made the next version of their OS look like a fucking phone based on the assumption that desktop customers would then all want to rush out and buy phones that look like their desktop.

We all know how well that worked out. Continuum (or whatever it is called) was an after thought and more or less pointless.

Apple and Google are not doing what Microsoft are trying to do because:

a) they are already in the mobile OS business

b) they are not that stupid

c) they are not that desperate

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Re: @Def: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

They CLAIM there is a substantial benefit to their customers. I don't know that any of them actually believe it. They believe it has an actual benefit to themselves, though, we can be sure of that.

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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

"and Windows 10 will still think it is a fucking phone"

As will almost every web-site on the planet because they all use an idiotic JS library that searches the user-agent string for the letters "arm" rather than, oh I don't know, actually asking how big the screen is.

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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

Because, thanks to malware, that query's going to start LYING from now on. Got any better way to figure out the screen size without giving yourself away?

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Devil

Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

"Whether you like Windows (10) or not is largely irrelevant."

hah hah hah hah that's a good one.

How is micro-shaft going to FORCE ME to use Win-10-nic? "Micro-shaft Uber Alles" or something?

/me sticking with Linux/FreeBSD with Mate desktop, Android or iOS phones/slabs, and the occasional Mac. When the rest of the world 'gets it', they'll join US.

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Def
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Re: 4 Processors Chips which could be 88 cores, 6TB of RAM...

That's already in the mix. Not sure if the Insiders have it yet, but it's here shortly. You just need to connect your phone to a bigger screen.

That'll be this then.

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Re: "Got any better way to figure out the screen size without giving yourself away?"

Give users the option to select if they are using a phone or a machine designed to do real work?

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That's probably 10 years to late

Much of the workstation market directly moved from proprietary unixes to Linux or MacOSX. The areas that went to Windows typically don't need much power, so you'd typically still run them on 10 year old computers. At one company I was working at, we still had a CAD package called "Protel 98". It's still being developed under the name "Altium Designer"... but seriously you don't need a powerful computer for it.

In any case, those are all just cut down versions of the same operating system.

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Re: That's probably 10 years to late

Because many software packages for workstation are expensive proprietary ones, they have little reasons to move to Linux, also because they need certified hardware/software solutions too. For example, nVidia offers optimized drivers for many packages, for Windows.

While in the imaging industry you'll see macOS, in other sectors it's still proprietary Unixes and Windows.

If you like CAD, give a look to Dassault Systemes ones, they are a bit more powerful, and require quite powerful systems given what you design with them... they run on Windows and IBM System P.

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Re: That's probably 10 years to late

Very little workstation-class software runs on macOS anymore, because Apple stopped making workstation-class hardware nearly a decade ago. (People forget that before the "dustbin" Mac Pro was left to wither, the previous Mac Pro tower was also left in semi-abandonment by Apple for a couple of years).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: That's probably 10 years to late

"Much of the workstation market directly moved from proprietary unixes to Linux or MacOSX"

I would say maybe 10% go to Linux - for some development and or front office uses. Never ever seen anyone go to MacOSX instead of a workstation, lol. The vast majority of course go to Windows.

"The areas that went to Windows typically don't need much power"

Areas that use Windows as a workstation in my experience (banks, trading floors, utilities, telcos, finance houses, etc.) typically have 2 x 16 Core Xeons and 64GB - 256GB of RAM. So boxes around the £4K-£5K each mark. There would be a big market for 4 CPU boxes too for Windows. At the moment you have to connect remotely to a server running a server OS for that type of use, and there are many situations where people want one under a desk!

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Is the UI fixed yet?

Until they fix the tragically ruined user interface they can get lost.

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And...

...I bet it still comes with phone home telemetry that can't be fully switched off, and forced updates that override privacy settings and replace useful features with useless ones.

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Re: And...

What do you think the >4 socket support and 6TB RAM is for?

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Re: And...

If there is method in their naming madness, it should include telemetry like Windows 10 Pro.

If there isn't then it won't and it'll be on a parity with Enterprise.

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WTF?

great ideas at the top

let's make a bunch of different versions of the OS to handle different cpu configurations, even though the minute changes (if any exist at all) will have no measurable impact on performance.

meanwhile, let's make sure there is only a single GUI, designed for phones where we have less than half a percent market share.

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Re: great ideas at the top

How about giving the users a degree of control over it then? Will we just get the usual dumbing down?

File systems - how about if you want to us ext4 or something other than they want to tie you into?

Desktop configurations - no tiles as an option?

An ability not to be gradually forced towards just using the Windows Store?

Telemetry - a "completely off" option?

I am sure others can think of more.

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Re: great ideas at the top

@Refugee

I am sure others can think of more.

You should also ask for a pony.

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Re: great ideas at the top

>Desktop configurations - no tiles as an option?

Haha! Have you seen what happens to tiles when your proxy requires authentication *before* it allows access to the internet?

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Re: great ideas at the top

If you want to use ext4, just install a driver for it. Eg. https://www.paragon-software.com/home/extfs-windows/

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Re: great ideas at the top

>Haha! Have you seen what happens to tiles when your proxy requires authentication *before* it allows access to the internet?<

I've never used Windows 10 but let me guess. They all turn into the "not available"? They all turn into the authenticate screen?

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Re: great ideas at the top

"You could ask for a pony"

When Vlad did that, MS charged him so much that he couldn't afford shirts. https://www.dropbox.com/s/uexx5zqathu4qef/_61983585_getty_putin_horse.jpg?dl=0

There are way too many mosquitos and other biting flies around here, I'm NOT chancing having to be shirtless.

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Windows

New paradigm ?

Given how cloud computing can deliver a virtual desktop via RDP down an ADSL line, the only real need for local computing grunt is where latency is a problem and/or the loss of functionality due to a loss of connectivity would be problematic.

So a subset of a subset.

We *should* start to see a divergence between an OS intended for cloud-delivery, and an OS intended to manage a local machine.

Now I'm not (yet) sure what this will mean in the marketplace, but stories like this need to be read against that background.

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Re: New paradigm ?

Or if you care about your data's locality? Or if you have too much data to get into $CLOUD in a timely manner.

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LDS
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Re: New paradigm ?

When you have several large screens connected, and some specific hardware connected, you start to see how using a remote desktop may be an issue. You'll also want dedicated computer resources, not shared with someone else.

Workstation are usually used for high-end CAD, 3D modelling, video processing, simulations, etc.

Take video processing, for example. It means you have to download several hundred GBs from your cameras, and then process them. Even a dedicated 1Gb network connection may be slow. You also want your video editing consoles to work with, and your expensive reference and grading monitors.

There are some tasks you design/code on a workstation, then send to a server farm or HPC computer for the full computations.

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Addition or subtraction?

The cynical thought lurking in my mind on reading this (other than, of course, "Win7 is the last Windows I'll ever use") is that it would be vastly easier for MS to produce one version of Windows OS, capable of dealing with *all* the hardware specs listed in the article, with users allowed to choose the GUI skin they prefer from among, say, "Win 7 which lets me do actual work" to "horrible phone-like nonsense getting in my way". Users would choose whether they used "advanced" or even server-like features, and in the meantime MS would be required to write, maintain and support just one single core of code.

Of course, that won't happen because just like car manufacturers before them, MS introduce as much superficial and often meaningless distinction as possible to different "versions" to try to squeeze every bit of the market for whatever juice it contains.

One also wonders whether, again like car manufacturers, lots of features are actually there in the basic versions but simply crippled.

Either way, for me it is moot. The spyware telemetry is an absolute no-no, and the Win8+ interfaces are materially worse than Win7. When support for 7 dries up, or possibly sooner, I'll be off to Linux. Been using it for server stuff for years and will regret the loss of only a single W7-only application, for which a satisfactory *ix substitute exists. I fail to see why I should let myself or my data become a cash-cow hostage to MS, especially when superior free alternatives exist.

Funny how history turns in such bizarre circles. When I was 20, the idea of buying an OS would have seemed faintly ridiculous. MS made it a Thing: and yet here we are 40 years later, when no one making a virgin, rational choice of hardware and OS would, in fact, pay money ... for a mediocre, conspicuously insecure one, that spies on you, lies to you and tries to trap you.

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Anonymous Coward

OpenVMS on x86

I can't wait for VMS on x86. That'll be me sorted!

https://www.theregister.co.uk/2016/10/13/openvms_moves_slowly_towards_x86/

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Anonymous Coward

Another version of Windows I won't be using

So glad I'm not a Microsoft customer or user.

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AFAIC MS should have stopped at WS2008R2 and just tweaked outs and sods and supported new drivers.

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Anonymous Coward

AFAIC MS should have stopped.

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No. If MS want a few billion dollars worth of free advise - Go after IBM's business.

But the wont, you know, clouds, AI, and all that. Whne there's billions of business $$$ for the taking.

In more detail:

Drop the current block drier for disks. Repalce it with FreebSDs disk block serivce, put in ZFS - get a license from oraclce so they wont sue you. Then port Dtrace to MS.

Drop PowerShell. Its shit, it just is.

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Anonymous Coward

"Go after IBM's business."

Good idea. IBM have been slowly circling the pan ever since they tried to pretend Microsoft don't exist and have been focusing on crud like Limux @ Munich.

"put in ZFS "

You can do that if you want to. Windows is fully modular. However, the vast majority of ZFS functionality is already built into Windows.

"Drop PowerShell. Its shit, it just is."

LOL I smell a clueless person who doesn't even know Powershell. Shit when compared to what exactly? Powershell is far more powerful, secure and flexible that say any *Nix shell I have ever used. There is a long long list of advantages and very few disadvantages.

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