back to article World of the strange: There will be NINE KINDS of Windows 10

When Windows 10 ships this summer, buyers will have a host of different versions of the operating system – actually as many as nine, when you take everything into account. The basic consumer version is Windows 10 Home. For that you get the OS with support for Windows Universal apps, the Edge browser (and Internet Explorer), …

  1. getHandle

    Same old, same old

    Hit and hope for the programming interfaces, same for the support. Only corps will bother, and they're losing faith.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      "and they're losing faith.'

      This crowd have learned nothing. 10 flavours and no way to customize the interface for experienced Pros like me. I laughed when I read: "which allows security updates to be delayed so that Windows Home users can test the patches for bugs."... More joyous moments of being an unwitting guinea pig for Redmond....

      I'm getting my act together finally and starting to test-drive Linux. When the day comes that I can comfortably run everything I need to, I'm off this windows rat ship... Linux even has Firefox and VLC installed by default, and you can boot off a CD in about a minute.... What's not to like?

      1. dogged

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        If you don't know exactly how customizable the Windows interface has always been - and here's a hint, Start8 is the very least of what's possible - then I'm glad they don't design for "experienced Pros like [you]".

        What are you Pro at exactly? Wheelbarrow maintenance?

        1. Michael Habel Silver badge

          Re: "and they're losing faith.'

          Here's another PROTIP: WHY THE FECK SHOULD MicroSoft CARE ABOUT SOMEBODY ELSE'S UNLICENSED CODE! And, lord only knows how many Vulns Start8 brought / brings with it?

          1. Paul Shirley

            @Michael Habel

            "lord only knows how many Vulns Start8 brought / brings with it?"

            With Win8 onwards Microsoft created the *need* for products like Start8, they share responsibility for any resulting issues.

            MS didn't need to actually remove the theming code from Win8 that would have let dissenters safely revert the hideous new look&feel - they deliberately chose to take that choice away permanently, they share responsibility for issues hacking it back in cause.

            1. dogged

              @Paul Shirley

              If MS had removed the "theming code", Start 8 could not exist.

              Your argument is nonsensical.

              1. Paul Shirley

                Re: @dogged

                "If MS had removed the "theming code", Start 8 could not exist."

                They didn't remove all of it, just the bits Metro didn't need and the code to read many preferences. In prerelease builds much of it was just a regedit away from resurrection, then they excised the code they didn't want anyone using.

                Through subclassing pretty much anything can manipulate the UI. Having to install a 3rd party theming driver to actually do that is a security hole waiting to be exploited.

                1. illiad

                  Re: @dogged

                  The only way a graphic driver would enable a security hole, is if you use internet software that allows access *outside* the browser... do tell me WHY you would have this happen??? getting fancy webb apps at the expense of security, and then a few MEGS of patch to work around the problem ??

                  It is for the above reason that most have gone to 3rd party browsers, and heavily limited flash and script.. (if your stupid webpage wants 'prettiness' over function, I will go elsewhere , thanks...)

            2. d3vy Silver badge

              Re: @Michael Habel

              @Paul Shirley

              My new car didn't come with a tape deck.. I found a third party one and wired it up myself but it caused the fuses to blow regularly. Clearly this is fords fault for discontinuing the tape deck.

          2. illiad

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            you are just being paranoid...

        2. John Sanders
          Mushroom

          Re: "and they're losing faith.'

          """What are you Pro at exactly? Wheelbarrow maintenance?"""

          And you sir deserve a slap.

          1. dogged

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            > And you sir deserve a slap

            Oh, do we have to be nice to arrogant idiots now? He's not our CEO so I don't have to pretend he isn't a moron

            BTW, was your "slap" the new downvote added to my total on every single thing I've posted in the last month? Ooh, ooh, that hurts make it stop argh argh wait actually grow the fuck up and stop being so petty.

            1. Uffish

              Re: "every single thing"

              @dogged

              You keep stats? 'Sufficient unto the day' dear friend.

              1. dogged

                Re: "every single thing"

                > You keep stats? 'Sufficient unto the day' dear friend.

                No, I just have a good memory and the Your Posts page is handy for keeping up with a conversation.

                Although most aren't worth bothering with.

                Take this one - Article about Windows 10? Quick! Log on to the comments and tell everyone you use linux! Then they will know how cool and uber and an "experienced Pro" you are. Very little in the comments about the actual article, just the usual communal dick-rub about how awesome it is to be a Penguinista.

                And don't get me wrong, it is awesome. I've been using Debian since 1998 so I can see how some people could get excited about it. What it is not is a) big b) clever -anymore, most WMs and installers have got a lot friendlier to the newb and that's a good thing - or c) relevant in any way.

                It's like a whole crowd of people getting erections over how they can drive a car with a manual gearbox - standard response should be "so fucking what?"

      2. Chemist

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        "Linux even has Firefox and VLC installed by default,"

        ? The Linux I've been using has had Firefox by default since ?? 10+years ago

      3. Michael Habel Silver badge

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        What's not to like?

        No Office, and Photoshop, or AutoCAD... Ok so actually with Two out of these three having gone into the Cloud, and, One of those Three being a non-sequitur I guess only the Architects will be the only Ones to suck up MicroSoft's latest offering.

        So this Old Chessnut of... Well I need MUH Software is slowly drying up now too it seems...

        1. SolidSquid

          Re: "and they're losing faith.'

          OpenOffice/LibreOffice do a good job as substitutes for Office, only issue I've heard of is compatibility because of Microsoft doing non-standard stuff with their formats.

          Photoshop you've got Lighttable, Darktable, Krita, Gimp and MyPaint, so most things you want to use it for have a program, although in some edge cases there might be a bit more swapping programs than preferred.

          AutoCAD I'll give you though, CAD software is a bit of a pain to find on Linux. There's Blender, 3D Coat and a few other 3D modelling applications, but actual CAD software I think is largely limited to 2D CAD

          1. DropBear Silver badge
            Boffin

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            "actual CAD software I think is largely limited to 2D CAD"

            I'm not going to pretend you can have a 1:1 Autocad replacement in Linux (definitely not) but on the other hand SolveSpace, FreeCAD or OpenSCAD do a surprisingly decent job (in 3D) when you don't quite need to design the Golden Gate bridge or be enterprise-compatible...

            1. Roger Greenwood

              Re: "and they're losing faith.'

              try Bricscad. Maybe not 1:1 but good enough for many. Now available on three platforms - win/linux/mac.

              Disclaimer - I have been a user for almost 10 years.

              1. DropBear Silver badge

                Re: "and they're losing faith.'

                "try Bricscad. Maybe not 1:1 but good enough for many. Now available on three platforms - win/linux/mac."

                Ah, I see, it's a commercial product. That of course detracts nothing from your perfectly valid point, I was just wondering why it wasn't familiar - that's clearly because I tend to stick strictly with the free variety.

            2. John Sanders

              Re: "and they're losing faith.'

              """I'm not going to pretend you can have a 1:1 Autocad replacement in Linux"""

              Draftsight aims to be a clone of AutoCAD, you can even run Lisp macros on it, perhaps is not 1:1 but very close.

              Some versions run in Wine quite well, AutoCAD 2000 runs almost perfectly.

          2. Thomas Whipp

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            Ok so I've used the majority of the software you mention (both the commercial and FOSS elements) (minus the CAD/3D stuff - I tried playing with that once and decided I simply didnt have the mind set for it).

            Something I find that is often missed in these conversations is skills/training and consistency. FOSS projects are much better than the 1990's and early 2000's but they still generally lag behind, more over because they tend to have smaller user bases the availability of training (as opposed to online learning materials) is much more limited.

            A phrase that I heard once is that an amature practices until they get it right, a professional practices until they dont get it wrong (ok big generalisation as I know that pro/amature is about being paid and that there are big skills variances on both sides - but in aggregate people being paid then to be better than people just doing stuff for fun)

            Basically what I'm saying is that the FOSS solutions are good, and certainly helpful for home users who want to stay on the right side of licencing. But the dominant commercial products tend to stay that way and to produce more consistent and better quality output for a whole load of reasons which are much more about users than about products.

          3. John Sanders

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            """AutoCAD I'll give you though, CAD software is a bit of a pain to find on Linux. """

            Draftsight: https://www.3ds.com/products-services/draftsight-cad-software/

            1. JEDIDIAH
              Devil

              Re: "and they're losing faith.'

              > AutoCAD I'll give you though, CAD software is a bit of a pain to find on Linux.

              An Autocad USER is a bit of a pain to find actually.

              It's been 20 or so years since this product was a visible thing to consumers. The PC market has grown and evolved since then. Back in the days of DOS, CAD programs were a much more significant portion of the overall user base. These days not so much.

              1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

                Re: "and they're losing faith.'

                Actually Jed, Autocad was never a consumer product since it was never in the consumer price range. What happened is that as PCs got cheaper the professional CAD software remained expensive and lots of smaller companies tried to break into the market with low cost alternatives. Some built up a decent user base, like Sketchup, and most folks likely find the base package to be good enough for their needs. Also, if acad users are harder to find it's because many have moved up to 3D solid or surface modeling since it doesn't require a high end unix workstation anymore. Sure there are some specialized areas where acad still has strong support, electrical schematics and P&ID come to mind, but in much of the mechanical world designers are using things like Creo, SolidWorks, NX, etc.

          4. Bleu

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            Who cares? C'mon everybody!

            Srsly, Open/Libre Office takes the biggest faults of MS Word to an extreme.

            I DO NOT WANT your idea of what automatic formatting I should have, what I DO WANT is easy and transparent control of format.

            Seriously, between the MS 'ribbon' stupidity and the Open/Libre Office design's asinine assumption that I will always like their irritating auto-formatting (I never do), where is there to turn?

            I can't see a place to turn Open Office's stupid auto-formatting off.

            If only WordStar etc. had stayed competitive, good lord, many of the Commodore 64 word processor offerings were more usable than MS-Word of now, or what's left of Star Office.

            1. illiad

              Re: "and they're losing faith.'

              "Open/Libre Office takes the biggest faults of MS Word to an extreme."

              The BIG problem is, there are those fools who either LIKE the 'faults' in MSword, or are too lazy to fix it, so just use it 'properly'..... rolleyes

              ... and when they want to use Open/Libre Office, they moan that their doc wont work!!! :( :(

          5. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: "and they're losing faith.'

            Siemens NX is cross platform, with one of the supported platforms being Linux:

            http://www.plm.automation.siemens.com/en_us/products/nx/about-nx-software.shtml

            It's kind of like a high end version of Autocad, with Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), and manufacturing also integrated.

        2. John Sanders
          Linux

          Re: "and they're losing faith.'

          "No Office, and Photoshop, or AutoCAD"

          I did an install of "AutoCAD 2000" (Hey I still have a license for it, and I do not need to exchange drawings with anybody else) a few days back on Wine and to my surprise it works 99.9% (Only the MS help menu doesn't work 100% because of missing functionality) Spent hours on it drawing and no crash no single problem.

          PhotoShop CS3/4/5/6 is almost working in Wine now. (Application runs but has some issues) , PhotoShop CS and CS2 run almost perfectly now.

          Different versions of Office works to different degree. I run Visio 2003 on Linux regularly.

          For a while I have had the feeling that in some time Wine will be the best way of running some of windows' old applications.

          Take Autocad 2000, a perfectly capable professional grade CAD software made obsolete because it can only run in Windows 2000, and Autodesk's greed. Revived thanks to Wine.

          Also of course you can always run an XP VM on Virtualbox if one becomes desperate for some piece of windows software.

      4. Richard Morris
        Coat

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        "Linux even has Firefox and VLC installed by default"

        If you find that you have a GUI, browser and media player installed by default, you are using the wrong distribution entirely.

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        Our main PC dual-boots OpenSUSE and WIndows 7. I think Windows 7 was last booted sometime around last Christmas.

      6. MCG

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        When the day comes that I can comfortably run everything I need to, I'm off this windows rat ship.

        So basically never?

      7. joeldillon

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        Err, 'Linux' doesn't have anything installed by default, it depends on the distro...

      8. excollier

        Re: "and they're losing faith.'

        I threw in the towel with Windows Vista around 3 years ago. I took up Linux instead and now there's nothing i need Windows for any longer - I simply cannot think of any logical reason to use Windows ever again.

        Good luck with your Linux venture.

    2. Planty Bronze badge
      FAIL

      Re: Same old, same old

      One big renaming scheme.

      Mobile and tablets only run simple noddy "universal apps". Previously known as metro apps. Desktop windows run those and win32 apps.

      How is any of this any different from what we have now? How dies this save Microsoft's failed mobile strategy?

      Thty have just taken everything they already had, rolled it in glitter and called it all windows 10 and offered windows 7 users a free downgrade.

      1. illiad

        Re: Same old, same old

        "How does this save Microsoft's failed mobile strategy?"

        It wont... the mobile market is far to competitive.. Having many types of phone OS is how others manage, the only other with 'one OS' does it by ad hype and rich designer buyers...

  2. ZSn

    S/MIME

    Will they ever get around to allowing S/MIME e-mails from the phone. They keep stating in the blurb that they will (first in windows phone 8.1, but it doesn't work) then what about 10?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    Upgrade to what?

    I sure hope they'll give us a matrix chart, charts?, to guide us on what versions of Windows upgrade to what flavors of W10 in the context of which devices under what license agreements. I thought it was bad before but shot!

  4. hplasm Silver badge
    Meh

    "...Windows 10 to be delivered as a service, this milestone..."

    Milestone or millstone, this 'service'?

    1. Dan Paul

      Re: "...Windows 10 to be delivered as a service, this milestone..."

      Millstone AND Albatross around the neck.

      SaaS will be the death of Microsoft.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: "...Windows 10 to be delivered as a service, this milestone..."

        SaaS will be the death of Microsoft.

        The death of it's customers, more like.

        1. Planty Bronze badge

          Re: "...Windows 10 to be delivered as a service, this milestone..."

          Watch idiot investors all get excited when the initial influx of freebie hunters downgrade from windows 7. Grab some popcorn when they they realise Microsoft never report uninstall rates, and it's a totally fake statistic

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Home users

    Home users

    Pro users also get the option of Windows Update for Business, which allows security updates to be delayed so that Windows Home users can test the patches for bugs.

    So do I take it that the Windows 10 Home users will have autoupdate (whether they like it or not) so that they can be first to be hit by any screw-up from Microsoft?

    Sort of like being sent out into a minefield with nothing more than a stick for prodding, while the Pros hang back and mark where the bangs occur.

    1. regadpellagru

      Re: Home users

      "So do I take it that the Windows 10 Home users will have autoupdate (whether they like it or not) so that they can be first to be hit by any screw-up from Microsoft?"

      This is becoming more and more obvious. Same goes for W7/W8 adopters within the first year. They'll get it free and will test it before paying customers come.

      Note it's the first time MS is stating openly about 2 classes of users: those guinea pigs, and the rest ...

      This is really telling !

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Home users

        @ regadpellagru

        "Note it's the first time MS is stating openly about 2 classes of users: those guinea pigs, and the rest ..."

        or to put it another way:

        You see, in this world there's two kinds of people, my friend: Those with loaded guns and those who dig. You dig.

      2. Dan 55 Silver badge

        Re: Home users

        Well it's not as if enterprises haven't waited a few days after Patch Tuesday to see what happens to the guinea pigs anyway.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Kind of like a garbage service in reverse

    Paying for Windows as a service is like paying the garbage man to come dump garbage on your lawn every week.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    how many?

    Tom's Hardware is reporting 7, not 4/6/9.

    Make your shit simple Microsoft. I thought you were converging all the platforms and getting rid of OS versions entirely... then you pull this Home/Pro/Enterprise/Education/Mobile shit yet again. What are the arbitrary RAM limits this time around?

    1. Sandtitz Silver badge

      Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

      "Make your shit simple Microsoft. I thought you were converging all the platforms and getting rid of OS versions entirely... then you pull this Home/Pro/Enterprise/Education/Mobile shit yet again."

      The mobile versions are obviously special since they're meant for the phones and tablets. Which generic desktop OS are you using on your smart phone/tab?

      Compared to some other supposedly popular operating systems the MS lineup looks tidy. Mint has 8 different editions, why? And how many Ubuntu versions are available - a couple dozen or so?

      What are the arbitrary RAM limits this time around?

      Windows 8 ("Home") is limited to a paltry 128GB, and the Pro can handly only 512 GB - hardly a problem for workstations of today. The limits have been raised with every Windows version and have been quite reasonable I'd say. If you need more, then MS would like to sell you a Server version.

      BTW, 64-bit CPUs are supposed to handle 16EB but no OS supports that. Why?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        Yes, because we don't just need a basic Home edition, we need Pro AND Enterprise AND Mobile Enterprise AND Education.

        All those Linux distros are the same price: 0.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        Mint has 8 different editions, why? And how many Ubuntu versions are available

        Choice. There's different desktop environments, and completely different use cases. For example, there's some traditional desktops, server, tablet, tv, old xp era laptops, no proprietary code, etc.

        You wouldn't want to manage your server with a phone interface, would you?

        With Windows, there's different editions purely for price segmentation. The more you pay, the less it's crippled or invades your privacy.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

          With Windows, there's different editions purely for price segmentation. The more you pay, the less it's crippled or invades your privacy.

          Kindly explain how Windows prices determine the level of privacy, thank you.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            @AC - Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

            Actually you are correct here, even if you pay more they still get to invade your privacy.

        2. hplasm Silver badge
          Meh

          Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

          "You wouldn't want to manage your server with a phone interface, would you?"

          Have you seen Windows Servers recently?

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

            Have you seen Windows Servers recently?

            Exactly!

      3. thames

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        @Sandtitz - "And how many Ubuntu versions are available - a couple dozen or so?"

        That's a link to derivatives, that is to other distros which were created by third parties out of Ubuntu. By definition, they're not Ubuntu. Canonical's relationship with the derivatives ranges from friendly to indifferent to prickly, but each of the derivatives is its own thing run by third parties. Ubuntu itself is a derivative of Debian.

        Leaving out different chip architectures (the version is the same, just compiled for different targets), there's just Desktop, Server, and Cloud (server with OpenStack). There's also Kylin, but it's a special version of Desktop for the Chinese market that has apps for popular Chinese cloud and social media providers instead of the corresponding American ones. Unless you live in China, it doesn't really count. There is an Ubuntu Phone, but it's still in beta and so can't really be counted.

        So to compare like with like, where Ubuntu just has Desktop, Microsoft has Home, Pro, Enterprise, and Education. The reason for difference of course is that Microsoft wants a wad of money for each copy so they need different feature sets to hit different price points. Ubuntu doesn't charge for the OS (they sell services), so there's no incentive for them to hold back features.

        Microsoft have actually trimmed down the number of different desktop choices they once had. The main problem though tends to be in small and medium size businesses where the users have a hard time figuring out whether they actually need "enterprise" features or whether they can just buy the cheapest PC at the local computer shop.

      4. Kye Macdonald

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        Linux Mint has 8 editions because they are actually different. Though half of those differences are purely a "are you stuck in the US? if so you can't have these codecs" so really there are 4.

        Of the 4 that are true different versions they are actually totally different desktop environments and they will run different software. Mate, XFCE, KDE & Cinnamon. These are not the same as here is pro/ultimate/corporate/education where the difference is whether a particular service is crippled or not.

        As for the ram. 128gb is probably way more than I am going to have in my desktop in the lifespan of windows 10. But WHY does it exist at all? It isn't the case that pro improves on home and hence can support 512. It is actually that home is a crippled version of pro so it only supports 128.

      5. SolidSquid

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        In fairness the download page for Mint actually gives a pretty good overview of what the different options are. They're for different desktop managers and for no codec versions for specific regions where there could be licencing issues with the codecs. They also include links for the different desktop managers for people who aren't sure of the difference

        And there's only one Ubuntu, it's just that as an open source platform people are able to branch it to create new projects *based* on Ubuntu. Most of those aren't even supported by Canonical, and those that are (I think around 4?) tend to be for specialist environments like education and aren't on the main download page

      6. no-one in particular

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        > Which generic desktop OS are you using on your smart phone/tab?

        OS on tablet? Windows XP, since 2006 (late adopter)

      7. John Sanders
        Devil

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        """then you pull this Home/Pro/Enterprise/Education/Mobile shit yet again."""

        The MS PR machine, isn't it incredible?

        One of these days you will also discover that none of MS' supposed open software is actually any open.

      8. JEDIDIAH
        Mushroom

        Re: how many? @Mr. Coward

        > Mint has 8 different editions, why?

        It's easy. They aren't mutually exclusive. They're all just different variations on packaging. You can start out with their version of the Debian minimal image and morph it into any Mint "version" with a single command.

        There is also just one price.

        What Microsoft does is nothing like that. They don't have a single system with identical capabilities that can run on multiple architectures offered for the same price.

        Arbitrary artificial limits are always stupid and shortsighted. You would think Microsoft (and it's Lemming users) would have learned this lesson by now.

    2. Stuart Castle

      Re: how many?

      This is what I read once they call "Simplification". Windows 2000 was released and had four versions. Pro, Server, Advanced Server and Data Centre Server.

      then the Server and Client lines were split.

      XP had four client editions (Starter, Home, Pro and 64 bit) or 5 if you include Windows Fundamentals (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Fundamentals_for_Legacy_PCs) which was designed for thin client work.

      Server side, Windows Server 2003 was released a couple of years after XP, and had 6 editions. If you count Server 2003 as the server version of XP, that' already 10 or 11 editions.. Then add in Server 2003 R2 which came with 8 editions..

      Vista also had four client editions, but Windows Server 2008 had 10 editions.. That's fourteen editions between the client and server versions of essentially the same OS. Server 2008 R2 had 12 editions..

      In fairness, with Windows 8, they are reducing the number of editions, as the client for both 8 and 8.1 has 3 editions, and Server 2012 has five, where as Server 2012 R2 currently has four.

      Who knows what they'll do with 10 and whatever the server version of 10 is called.

    3. illiad

      Re: how many?

      converging all the platforms and getting rid of OS versions was what it tried with win 8... and failed miserably due to people wanting win7, 'designers' and teens loving the 'idiot interface' (they only use it like a console..), etc, etc..

      this 'made to measure' approach may well use the same core, but it will please all those who work in offices and all the other markets...

  8. Rusty 1

    One?

    How about one version, known as, perhaps Windows 10.

    Maybe there could be a number of diverse profiles - small laptop, typical desktop, honking big server, and many custom variants between and beyond.

    Microsoft, don't do a Cisco/Oracle and charge per individual feature/function. Surely your customer base will get loads more out of the platform if they can play with all of the features they think relevant. Certainly the typically laptop user won't be too bothered about firing up iSCSI initiators, but how about hooking some of those experimental types who might just give it a go in their home lab?

    1. Sandtitz Silver badge

      Re: One?

      ISCSI initiators are a poor example since they've been built-in in all Windows editions since Vista.

      Yes, it would be simpler if there was a single SKU. Isn't going to happen as long as the current supply and demand model works for MS.

      And those home lab types can download for free trial versions of enterprise Windows versions.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        @Sandtitz - Re: One?

        Demand ? Who demands Windows, I always thought you have to explicitly demand not to get it, something like an opt-out for example.

  9. All names Taken
    Paris Hilton

    C.mon El Reg? ...

    ... you can do better than that?

    It looks as if W10 is not a product.

    It looks as if W10 is a theme that transcends hardware types (well, at least common hardware types) ensuring the user has an almost seamless UX (user experience) in whatever device the user has W10 running?

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

    Can Redmond please speak in PLAIN English i know its hard for Americans.

    Is windows 10 a service with a subscription only licence ?

    OR

    Will it be sold at a one off cost with a perpetual licence with a life span of X years or Service pack + X Years ? (yes i KNOW there will be no service packs going forward just rolling "improvements"

    will people who "upgrade" from windows 7 & 8 free in the first year get a one year subscription or a perpetual licence? which versions will get the free upgrade ? @ home im a consumer but still use win7 Pro as my OS.

    I will not be buying a subscription @ home (work already do by having a Select agreement i suppose) if the software is nice and works well compared to windows 7 i will buy it BUT If its subscription only and i cant do updates when i want (to preserve bandwidth and prevent tasks being stopped by reboots, and to stop known dodgy updates like KB 3035583) then im sticking with win7 until its ultimate demise and by then i will have found something new i hope :-(

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

      Subscription because you know you want it!

    2. Dagg
      Mushroom

      Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

      Subscription because then we can turn it off to force you to buy an update...

    3. Michael Habel Silver badge
      Coat

      Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

      Known dodgy Updates like KB 3035583 (Notification on the release of WinOSX!). Hardly the first time MicroSoft pulled that sh-- outta there arse! Anyone else here remember Windows XP: KB 905474 - Which BTW was marked as CRITICAL!! only had One purpose in its sad life which was to always call home and, make sure to say a cherry HELLO! back to MicroSoft's WGA Servers every chance it got!

      Now imaging the sheer joy knowing that by the time you read about such "Infections" here on the Reg... You can bask in the warmth of knowing its safely on your Systems!

      It's the One with the Windows 7 Install Stick in the Side Pocket! Hopefully by 2020, the Year of the Linux Desktop will have either passed us by, or is just 'round the Corner. Once 7 goes the way of XP!

      1. illiad

        Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

        well most intelligent users have switched off all updates ages ago, using a better browser and good malware / AV protection...

        Linux??? the problem is that there are STILL too many flavours, too many options, too many people that have NO CLUE beyond "why wont my Office file work" and "where is the googler???" :(

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

          Classic.

          The thoughts of a typical Windows user...

          - Don't Update.

          - Use good anti-malware/virus.

          - Choice is bad.

          - People using computers are idiots. Apart from myself, of course.

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
            Paris Hilton

            Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

            well most intelligent users have switched off all updates ages ago, using a better browser and good malware / AV protection...

            A suicide pact note found on an Internet?

            1. JEDIDIAH
              Thumb Down

              Re: "Perpetual licence or AS A SERVICE" ????????????

              I know a business user that had Win7 set to the "download and let me initiate" setting for the Windows update but it didn't actually do that. So he turned off updates all together because a machine decided to update itself right before a critical deadline.

  11. localzuk

    Not seeing an issue

    Home, Pro, Enterprise, Education, Mobile, Mobile Enterprise, Enterprise Embedded, Mobile Enterprise Embedded, IoT.

    There's not going to be much confusion because of that - they're all fairly well targetted.

    Home users are going to buy devices with Home and Mobile.

    Business users are going to buy Pro, Enterprise, or Mobile Enterprise.

    Schools will use Education and Mobile Enterprise.

    Embedded will use one of the 3 embedded/IoT version.

    Seems simple enough!

    1. Sir Runcible Spoon Silver badge

      Re: Not seeing an issue

      so where is the 'Windows 10 Secure' version? That's the only one I would be even remotely interested in.

      I might be a bit out of touch but I wish games developers/publishers would focus more on Linux. Perhaps someone could start up a project to develop a 'standard gaming' variant to make life simpler for the developers. Kickstarter?

      1. werdsmith Silver badge

        Re: Not seeing an issue

        so where is the 'Windows 10 Secure' version? That's the only one I would be even remotely interested in.

        Remove all cables apart from power, switch off all radio and IR etc, and keep it in a locked room *

        * Applies to all OSes.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Not seeing an issue

      I suggest for even greater clarity Windows Up, Down, Charm, Strange, Top and Bottom. There will be a corresponding set of anti-Windows.

      Physicists will find this easy to understand and then they can explain it to the rest of us.

      1. arctic_haze Silver badge

        Re: Not seeing an issue

        I opt for the Strange anti-Windows edition.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Not seeing an issue

          "I opt for the Strange anti-Windows edition."

          That would be dwm.

  12. Michael Habel Silver badge

    So will Ultimate (Vista / 7) users get stuck with Home versions of the Game, or can we update to the Pro version(s)?

    1. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Trollface

      Yes!

      (If you pay a nominal monthly subscription fee.)

  13. izntmac

    As a Service?

    I think people will move away from Windows because of the "service" model. I don't want my computer OS tied to being part of a "service" I have to pay for. The different editions sound reasonable but I would never by the home version just because of being the "guinea pig" for patches. I think Microsoft has some good ideas with this OS such as the start menu coming back but with Windows 7 extended support till 2020 then business will be slow to adopt Windows 10. Windows 7 is the new XP!

    1. localzuk

      Re: As a Service?

      Most home users consider their OS to be a service anyway, really. And in reality, consumers treat their devices as services also. They buy them, use them for a period of a couple of years and then replace with a new one.

      So, practically, there won't be that much of a difference to most consumers that I've come across. Many have already happily made the move over to Office 365 subscriptions from full Office boxed editions.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: As a Service?

      I'm afraid you're wrong, the bulk of people (consumers) don't give a flying, and it's not a shocking breakthrough to them either - they already pay a bill for their (...) cable tv, and they pay the bill for their "indispensable" mobile. They pay (well, some do) for their software already. I think somebody peddling (for now, relatively gently) software as a service, has spotted a wonderful gravy train, and if they don't find the tap, others will beat them to it, so... :(

      yeah, it sucks, but with "constant on", it appears to be inevitable, at least for the mainstream. Yeah, there will always be fringes, like people typing on a typewriter, and people using gramophones. But the bulk will bend over thinking of England (as they do, seeing their monthly cable and mobile bill, never mind the usual road tax, and THE tax).

      Just wait for the next step, i.e. hardware as a service - to become mainstream :/

      1. Teiwaz Silver badge

        Re: As a Service?

        Isn't hardware as a service already here, with mobile contracts?

        It's more rent to buy though...

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: As a Service? - New Microsoft Advert.

        Most users don't see windows software (windows XP, Vista, 7, 8, 8.1) as having a cost as its part of the cost of the machine when they buy it they are not told this pc is £300.00 plus another £80.00 or whatever for windows. so telling them they need to fork out £x per month to use the computer will be a hard sell unless the hardware cost comes down to consumable levels and i cant see the hardware manufacturers going for that.

        where as with a mobile phone contract the users have been conditioned by years of being lied to by being told the handset is "FREE" where as they are really paying for it over the term of the contract and if they don't change the contract at the end they will be still paying for it until they upgrade again (except O2).

        NEW Microsoft advert.

        You can get a "FREE" surface 3, with Windows 10 and office 365 personal, Just costing you £25.00 per month or upgrade to surface 3 pro and office 365 home only £35.00 per month and for ONLY £50 per month we will throw in a Microsoft 10 Lumia phone handset as well with 10 minutes of talk time unlimited texts and 1Gb of Data. (You wont need the voice minutes you can skype / lync /whatever we are allowed to call this product after Rupert Murdock is finished with us.) only a 24 month contract. -- (small print - auto contract renewal for another 24 months if you dont inform us before the contract ends. Other hardware available on application at additional cost. your data will belong to us unless you keep up repayments)

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows 10 Home.

    For that you get the OS with support for Windows Universal apps, the Edge browser (and Internet Explorer), and Windows Hello facial and fingerprint recognition software. You might also get the voice assistant Cortana, depending on where you live.

    I'll take the OS please, and instructions how to remove Windows Universal apps, the Edge browser, Windows Hello facial and fingerprint recognition software and voice assistant Cortana, if I'm unlucky enough to qualify for her presence.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Windows 10 Home.

      Who actually wants that stuff, anyway?

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows Home updates - mandatory?

    "Windows Pro. That gets you all of the above, along with extra tools for linking into cloud services and managing mobile devices. Pro users also get the option of Windows Update for Business, which allows security updates to be delayed so that Windows Home users can test the patches for bugs."

    This is what's implied, that you can't opt out of automatic patch testing (is this the price for "free" upgrade to windows 10?).

  16. janimal
    Coat

    The First Against The Wall...

    Hello Microsoft? The Sirius Cybernetics Corporation called. They would like their business planning and marketing departments back.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The First Against The Wall...

      Are you sure?

  17. MJI Silver badge

    How about the following?

    This would be good for me.

    A built in 16 bit layer so those old 16 bit programs can be ran

    The same layer allows the above to use IP

    The command shell allows MSDOS programs to run

    The command shell allows above full screen

    Do that than XP can die.

    There are still too many tools better in MSDOS than Windows, I can run them on anything XP and earlier provided 32 bit.

    I still need to keep an XP PC around for the odd task!

    1. TonyJ Silver badge

      Re: How about the following?

      I would say you have a fairly (but not entirely) unique use case there, though.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: How about the following?

        Not really, some old games are still playable.

        Then there are applications not rewritten due to retirement.

    2. localzuk

      Re: How about the following?

      Or, you could accept that the writing has been on the wall for 16 bit applications and MSDOS(!?) for over a decade, and accept that it might be time to rewrite things to work in the 21st century.

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: How about the following?

        Who is going to rewrite them all?

        A lot of authors have retired.

    3. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: How about the following?

      You might be pleasantly surprised by dosemu for Linux as a way of running 16-bit code. Its not perfect (but then XP's NTVDM wasn't either) but you also have some options to customise it or even fix problems if dedicated and smart enough.

      Also if you are brave/foolish/need it you can give dosemu direct hardware access to certain I/O ranges or interrupts, this can be useful for some cases when you have special hardware.

      We do, and it allows our 22 year old software & custom hardware worth £££ to work just fine. You get the simple DOS "so what you want" ease of doing I/O but with the relative security and remote maintenance of a modern OS. And good time-keeping if you configure dosemu to use the host (NTP adjusted) time.

      Sure we could have re-written our software to use different OS (and had to do that multiple times going to various Windows HAL changes, maybe then to Linux to escape the product activation and similar silly buggers screwing things over at inconvenient times) but why? It works well, has hundreds of equivalent year of debugging already, and after spending 6-12 man months of time & cost it would have done EXACTLY THE SAME job. How do you sell that to your business manager?

      1. MJI Silver badge

        Re: How about the following?

        My home PC is dual boot but I have not done much on Mint.

        I need to try to get our software running under WINE, but getting favourite text editors and database editors running would be nice.

        Anyway migrating ia always a long task, we started about 15 years ago, niow some of that early Windows stuff needs rewriting!

        Some of it was literally cross compiled into console mode programs, but they can be flakey.

  18. TonyJ Silver badge

    Jesus...way to muddy the waters (again) MS

    First off...anyone else remember Vista Ultimate and it's offer of free stuff that would come down later that never materialised beyond, I think, a couple of poxy games?

    Anyway...this is not difficult, or shouldn't be:

    Home;

    Business;

    Mobile;

    Server

    And maybe, just maybe, Server for Datacentre.

    So two client OS's - one for business use and one for home use. Even that isn't really necessary at the end of the day and it could just be a single version (but they need to justify the VL costs, I guess).

    Make every client OS download and install patches automatically unless joined to a domain. Give all of them the option of WSUS-like functionality to choose when/if/how to install.

    If you can't or won't give this level of control at least make the damn OS patchable without [usually stupidly long] reboots.

    I don't think your average user would mind updates being continually trickled down if a) they don't repeatedly bork their system - and let's face it MS, you don't have good form here recently - and b) they didn't require the reboots. I can see a situation where because of the constant trickle-down, users are faced with multiple patching and reboot cycles per week or even per day.

    1. Yugguy

      Re: Jesus...way to muddy the waters (again) MS

      Er.

      No thanks. I don't want auto download at home, or in the office. I want to choose when I waste my internet bandwidth.

    2. Daniel von Asmuth Bronze badge
      Windows

      Re: Jesus...way to muddy the waters (again) MS

      You forgot Windows for Submarines. http://blogs.msdn.com/b/ukgovernment/archive/2008/12/17/windows-for-submarinestm.aspx and Windows Automotive, Windows for Workgroups, Windows CE, Small Business Server, Media Center, Home Server, Windows for X-Box, Windows HPC Server, Windows Azure, Windows .NET, Microsoft Cluster Server, Terminal Server, and more....

  19. Roger Greenwood

    This made me laugh earlier (twitter)

    Marc Andreessen @pmarca · 7h 7 hours ago

    I can't believe Apple just renamed the iPhone "Apple Mobile 10 Consumer Edition Platinum Advantage Pack OEM Distribution Only".

  20. Avatar of They
    FAIL

    Hmmmm less and less of a selling point.

    So 9 versions is actually much less for normal people. Home is home, Pro is pro, Enterprise is for company's and then a mobile version. but MS like to flog the dead horse so we get Education versions? Why not just make it Home and sell it cheaper with an NUS number?

    Why have two mobile versions, it reads like one is certain screen sizes, which leads me to believe something in there can't scale very well? Always a good indication and in no way hailing from poor programming practices.

    Keep it simple and people will understand it.

    But delaying updates until Home test it first, if ever there was a reason not to get Home then. :)

    A licence you pay for or they shut you down? We all know in their current thinking when they make 10 obsolete the licence server will be turned off forcing an upgrade. Added to that I am not confident or happy in office 365 and their one password to rule them all malarky.

    Shame, give me a buy outright licence for Windows 10 pro and I might be tempted.

    1. Naselus

      Re: Hmmmm less and less of a selling point.

      Education versions are most likely a license thing - and pretty much everyone produces software with separate education licenses, since if you can push it on people while they're in Uni they're likely to stick with it afterwards. You bundle it with the existing Ed licenses for office and other standard programs used in every college in the world and flog it cheap.

      2 mobile versions are most likely because the Enterprise Mobile will include an baked-in MDM solution, likely something that plugs into whatever NPS is going to be calling itself under 10.

      It's really not that bad, tbh; at a minimum you were going to have home, business, server, mobile and IoT. Add Cloud into that and we're already looking at 6 distinct versions; it's not a big stretch from there to 9 once you have Enterprise and Education versions to plug in.

      Oh, and all the Linux guys screaming blue murder on this proliferation - give up, Linux is the most fragmented O/S in the world by so far that even various individual distros match Win 10. You don't get to say 'well, there's 8 versions of Mint but I'm not counting 4 of them because they only exist for legal reasons' - they still count for the end-user trying to pick what the hell to install. Yeah, they're free, but mass-versioning isn't somehow OK if it's not done for profit (see the bajillion forks of Android, for example). If you count anything which uses the Kernel as 'Linux' (and how many people who haven't worked in a server room will REALLY specify the difference between Debian, Ubuntu, Red Hat or Kali?), then you have to pick between about 10,000 different versions of the 'same' OS... Or cook your own from the hundreds of different modules. That's great if you know what you're doing, and truly awful for Joe Public - the main reason Linux has never managed to overtake Windows on the desktop, despite being free and doing more or less all the same things, is this utter confusion of versions. It's slowly beginning to win in the server room, but your nan is never going to be able to figure out which version does what for her home laptop.

      1. DasWezel
        Stop

        Re: Hmmmm less and less of a selling point.

        "It's slowly beginning to win in the server room, but your nan is never going to be able to figure out which version does what for her home laptop."

        Your nan (re)installs Windows herself? Kudos.

        1. thtechnologist

          Re: Hmmmm less and less of a selling point.

          Home laptop, so perhaps the home version?

          This idea of, "if you offer more than 2 versions of ANYTHING you will "confuse" the consumer needs to stop. Yes, too many choices is bad, but so if too few.

  21. Yamas

    Not for me

    It doesn't matter how many versions of Win10 will be out there as I'll stick with my Win7 pro 64bit for many years to come (possibly adding Chrome and Linux) until some OS company comes out with a OS like in the 'Her' film .

  22. James Pickett

    "ongoing innovation"

    Spare us!

  23. Yugguy

    No - there will only be ONE version of Windows 10

    And it will be called:

    Windows Where The Fuck Have They Moved It To This Time?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: No - there will only be ONE version of Windows 10

      Windows Where The Fuck Have They Moved It To And What Is It Called This Time?

      ftfy

  24. ramblog
    WTF?

    Will I get my Windows 10 Pro?

    Recently purchased Windows 8.1 Pro based on the promise MSFT made sometime ago about upgrading eligible users to Win 10 for free.

    Yet, from this announcement, it looks like they will 'give' it to me just for one year and that too for beta testing. After which I will be forced to pay a fee every year to continue using the 'Pro' features.

    Tough Luck if MSFT thinks they can pry money out of me every year for using my computer.

    I am happy with my 8.1 Pro. Thank You very much!

    1. thtechnologist

      Re: Will I get my Windows 10 Pro?

      They have already said that it is free for life for non business users. As long as you upgrade in the first year you pay nothing, ever. Google it, it's out there.

  25. earl grey Silver badge
    Trollface

    Service is what a bull gives a cow

    now i fully understand windows as a service

  26. arctic_haze Silver badge

    The more expensive the better!

    "Pro users also get the option of Windows Update for Business, which allows security updates to be delayed so that Windows Home users can test the patches for bugs."

    Let me guess. The Ultimate Supreme Pro version will not update at all?

  27. Nanners

    Perfect.

    flop.

  28. All names Taken
    Alien

    Danger! Upbeat comment!

    I for one welcome the step forward into W10.

    Yes, sure there are ifs n buts n butts n buttts but the evolution goes on.

    And yes, there are some who will always want tweakables and systems not based on Windows premise and predicates.

    But it is a big, wide world and the public do not enmass share these enthusiasms or purist ponderances or even MSDOS echoes of simplicity, doability and other-ilities.

    To those creative enough to be clouted, bold enough to assign budgets, astute enough to take the step forward I say (the rest is now copyright doodz :-) )

    You are the captains of your products - don't mix up your captaincies?

  29. This post has been deleted by its author

  30. JLV Silver badge

    ???

    so... I bought a gaming laptop with Win 8.0 Home on it.

    Which I upgraded (via MS's hard-to-find upgrade-for-windows, not at all like it belongs in the App Store anywhere...) to Win 8.0 Pro.

    Then to 8.1 Pro via update.

    Do I get a Win 10 Pro free as part of the throw Win 10 to the adoring masses? Or do I get a Win 10 Home free?

    Not to mention (a pet peeve of mine) that, if I were to have a system failure, my Asus laptop would rebuild itself (one hopes) to Windows Home 8 from its system-recover partition. Because I won't have a Win 10 Pro install-capable media.

    i.e. all these version certainly make sense, from a revenue point of view. I don't begrudge them, that's a commercial MS decision, take it or leave it.

    But they also make it very confusing to track where exactly your particular situation is located in the grand MS master plan if you are an existing customer.

    Linux and OSX are much clearer on getting from A to B, in general. And they also don't leave you much guess work on where to start if you are rebuilding a system from scratch after a failure.

    MS needs to work on transparency, user rights (as in, what am I entitled to with my past purchase(s) ) and install-from-scratch capable media.

    1. arctic_haze Silver badge

      Re: ???

      For the present day corporations existing users are as important as yesteryear snow. Especially with service based contracts. To get a good deal you have to threaten not to renew your subscription. However, I'm afraid with a monopolist, not even that will work.

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