back to article The Windows 10 future: Imagine a boot stamping on an upgrade treadmill forever

The advent of Windows-as-a-service means that businesses adopting Windows 10 will need to ensure they can monitor their software portfolio for compatibility with Microsoft's latest updates. So says Annette Jump, a research director at Gartner who today addressed the firm's Infrastructure Operations & Data Centre Summit in …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Will they have Rats in Windows 10.1 ?

    1. Bob Vistakin
      Mushroom

      Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

      We've seen the start of the Android Desktop releases, now there's an actual PC out. This sounds like the timeframe needed to ramp them up and refine them will match exactly the one needed for Windows 10 to die. Imagine what that'll be like when Google start pushing their own...

      Mark my words. There is a piece of software coming which will send Redmond into a bigger panic than Camerons aids when he mentions he's thinking of helping rural farmers by holding a photo shoot in a pig sty. Things are not mature enough for it to be needed yet, but when they are, this is what everyone will be talking about. You heard it here first, folks. It's the Windows -> Android desktop migration suite.

      1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

        Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

        Remix OS is the ****ing future.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

          How will this be any different than it is now? Seems to me this will just change whose boot will be swinging when you bend over.

          1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

            Re: whose boot

            And who slurps your private data for profit?

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Gimp

              Re: whose boot

              and Android development was designed by someone who has some kinky pain fetish.

        2. Matthew Taylor

          Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

          I'm guessing Remix OS uses java as its primary development language. The day google decided that android would use a JVM is a day that will live in infamy.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

        Wow, so this will really be the year or Linux* on the desktop!

        (* nearly)

        1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

          Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

          Will they have Rats...

          Rats? Rats in Windows?? RATS in WALLS????

          1. xybyrgy

            Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

            Will they have Rats...

            Rats? Rats in Windows?? RATS in WALLS????

            Stainless Steel Rats!

            1. Ripper38
              Pint

              Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

              @ xybyrgy Thought I recognized it. Full marks and a pint for the Harry Harrison reference.

      3. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        RE: Will be used to download Android desktop

        I last used it to download Linux Mint so I appreciate the sentiments. However now that Android is as bad at security/malware as older Windows versions were it is coming nowhere near any desktop machine I have any control over.

        ChromeOS maybe, as that's very secure. Android? You'd have to be a lunatic to run that as a desktop OS unless Google seriously up their security gamr..

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: RE: Will be used to download Android desktop

          Android really isn't suitable - each OS update requires input from various OEMs. That's why Google developed ChromeOS.

          However, many of the people who might move to ChromeOS - i.e those not dependant on Windows applications - may well have already moved to some mainstream flavour of desktop Linux.

      4. ecofeco Silver badge

        Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

        Android desktop? Hahahahahahahahahahahhaa

        God help us.

      5. alwass

        Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

        If Google do a desktop OS it will almost certainly be based on the best of the Linux distros out there now but be Android compatible, so can still be called Android desktop. Forget the Android you see on todays phones, just think some ultra hardened Mint or Ubuntu but with the ability to run Android apps almost as a bonus. Microsoft should be scared. Very scared.

        1. Bob Vistakin
          Facepalm

          Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

          Every day more and more legs are kicked out from under the once mighty microsoft. They must despair watching their empire crumble, even though they keep very quiet about it, for example the way it's trying to wrap up its comedy antics in the mobile space.

          Who'd have thought the desktop OS market would open up again, and all entirely of their own doing.

      6. Bob Vistakin
        Linux

        Re: Here's the Windows 10 future I see ... it will be used to download Android desktop

        Right on cue.

        As more and more pieces are put in place here, shuffled around there, the end goal becomes clearer every day.

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Will they have Rats in Windows 10.1 ?

      The same ones only bigger, better fed, and they believe they are smarter. Time to upgrade from cats to rat terriers.

  2. Ken Moorhouse Silver badge

    Independent Software Vendors...

    ...will spend a lot more time checking for compatibility of their product with current versions of Windows than they will actually writing "productive" software.

    Will there be advance notification to such vendors of the details of projected Windows Builds? I doubt it.

    1. J J Carter Silver badge

      Re: Independent Software Vendors...

      I'd expect all vendors to be on Windows Insider Fast Ring and be validating their apps against the Redstone build already.

      1. Dan 55 Silver badge
        Devil

        Re: Independent Software Vendors...

        Every day for the rest of their life. That'll lower development costs.

    2. YARR

      Why are Windows 10 updates any different from earlier Windows? Updates don't change the Windows APIs that applications are programmed to.

      If they introduced a major revision to Windows that affected application compatibility, they would provide an upgrade tool for checking compatibility, and offer to run older application in compatibility mode.

      1. bill.laslo

        The difference with the windows 10 update model, when compared to previous update models is that is completely different.

        Microsoft has moved to a constantly evolving version of Windows, which brings in the concept of rings. Most consumers are on a ring that delivers updates on a similar frequency to previous versions of Windows.

        Some businesses will be on a slower ring that delivers the same updates. Most businesses who want total control of their organisations IT infrastructure will be using Windows Enterprise, which let's you choose when you want to update.

        To add further confusion, some windows 10 users might also be part of the windows insider program, which puts them on the Fast Ring, this doesn't just deliver updates faster, but also provides things in beta, like bash on Windows

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Why are Windows 10 updates any different from earlier Windows? Updates don't change the Windows APIs that applications are programmed to.

        Win10 updates ARE different.

        Updates for 2K, XP/2k3, Vista, 7 and 8/8.1 were separated into critical ie. security and bug fixes, and recommended functionality changes. However, neither of these sets of updates introduced changes in the API's that were incompatible with the pre-existing version. Hence the net result was for example XP gained the capability to interface to secure WiFi networks and use SATA disks, without causing pre-existing applications to fail - yes they might not be able to 'see' the new functionality.

        When MS wanted to introduce more fundamental updates that would change API's etc., they issued a new version of .NET or Windows; which users were largely free to install as and when it suited them.

        Although MS have made various commitments over disruptive change to Windows 10, the frequency of updating and the total lack of any distinctive user prompt - such as GWX, means in practical terms there is little real distinction between all these style of updates.

        Given the update frequency for Win10 and Ms's general stance since the introduction of Win10, I don't expect MS to produce a compatibility tool. My expectation is that they will expect third-parties to have done the relevant testing etc. hence if an application breaks on a user system as a result of a Win10 update, it will be deemed to have been the user's fault as they hadn't downloaded the relevant updates...

  3. DryBones
    Linux

    So...

    How does all this time and effort and expense compare to migrating to Linux? Just wondering.

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: So...

      Depends on where you start from, those still struggling to get rid of IE & ActiveX crap are in for a massive re-wire effort either way.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: So...

        "those still struggling to get rid of IE & ActiveX crap are in for a massive re-wire effort either way."

        Which gives them the opportunity and reason to make a long-term decision.

    2. yoganmahew

      Re: So...

      It's exactly the same. Anything as a service requires more frequent testing (by the same logic). Or are you just going to sit on the same version of Linux forever?

      1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

        Re: So...

        No, but I could site on a 5 year LTS version of Linux for the best part of that time.

        But as you say, as soon as its "as a service" you basically have to jump to their tune: OS change breaks some bespoke application? Tough shit, pay them to fix it. What, that updated version is not compatible with your archive of valuable data? Tough shit. Office 365 or Google docs has played "hide the feature" again? Tough shit, retrain your staff or stop using it.

        1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

          Re: So...

          Or 10 year if you went with RedHat

          Yes I know RH is just as evil as MS in the minds of some here but if you want stability for longer than 5 years then there is a choice.

          With MS now injecting App Ads into your start menu, they really don't want people to use their software in the long term (on the desktop). Well, they won't if they keep up these repeating footgun incidents.

          They might have reached the tipping point now and the costs of moving to a non Windows platform may now work out less than keeping on it. I can see this 'rapid release' cycle getting shorter and shorter and IT Depts all over the place getting stuck in frantic evaluation and testing cycles every month. The Admins will hark back to the old days and Patch Tuesdays with fond memories.

      2. bombastic bob Silver badge

        Re: So...

        "Or are you just going to sit on the same version of Linux forever?"

        I typically don't upgrade my BSD machines [other than patches] to bleeding edge. Why bother if it's working? patch the infrequent vulnerabilities. no need for 'bleeding edge' if what you have already works. It's why I'm sticking with Windows 7 for my windows boxen.

        As for Linux, I typically stick with one version of THAT as well. It's more stable, particularly for software development. If I upgraded a particular ubuntu build machine (a virtualbox VM) that has patched compilers [patched by me] for a particular CPU, I'd have to re-do the patches. better to leave it 'as-is', because it's *STABLE*. So what if it's 3 years old.

        'Bleeding edge' is *OVER*-*RATED*

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: So...

          >"those still struggling to get rid of IE & ActiveX crap are in for a massive re-wire effort either way."

          >>Which gives them the opportunity and reason to make a long-term decision.

          I get the impression that whatever one uses to replace IE5 and ActiveX is platform-agnostic. That is, people having learnt their lesson about getting stuck in the mud before will not make the same mistake again, and make the decision to keep their options open in future. I'm no expert, but it seems that if even productivity software such as 3D CAD can now be run through a web browser, the actual OS of the desktop computer (er, terminal?) doesn't matter so much any more for many tasks, so long as it's secure and reliable.

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: So...

            You clearly have no idea of the resource a true 3D CAD application needs. A demo of a browser running a CAD application doesn't make it a viable solution for professionals. But keep on believing in fairies and unicorns...

            BTW: high end CAD application do run on some Unix workstations, but there's nothing for Linux. There are also many other specialized applications for designing specific systems, and again, you may not find them running on Linux.

            Often the GPL and the lack of proprietary drivers fully exploiting the hardware are a roadblock for wider Linux adoption. The ZFS issue is just an example of how difficult could be to develop kernel modules without giving IP away.

            1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

              Re: So...

              "The ZFS issue is just an example of how difficult could be to develop kernel modules without giving IP away."

              That shows a complete misunderstanding of the situation. Firstly virtually no "applications" need any kernel modules, typically that is for special hardware and things like file systems. Secondly you can develop a kernel module and make it available as a binary blob to be added to someone's Linux system if you want - after all that is what Nvidia, etc, do for graphics drivers. The current argument is about a distributing the GPL Linux kernel with a pre-compiled non-GPL driver and if that makes it "distributing a derivative" of the kernel (which seems a bit bizarre argument).

              The lack of specialist applications for anything other than Windows is simply a historical artefact of 90+% of desktop computers being Windows based, why would you bother with the other 10%? However, if a lot of folk move off Windows due to this, or other reasons, then software developers may start to see the value in using cross-platform tools (like Qt and similar) so they are not tied to MS uncertain future roadmap.

              Or just run stuff in a Win7 VM without email/web/external Internet access and forget about the future patching (or lack of) for the OS.

      3. The Real Tony Smith

        Re: So...

        Still using Kubuntu 8.04, released in 2008.

        It works......

    3. Charlie Clark Silver badge

      Re: So...

      How does all this time and effort and expense compare to migrating to Linux?

      Apples and moon rocks in many cases: many companies are, more or less, happily wedded to Windows stacks.

      In any case the main migration that Microsoft is worried about is desktop to mobile (IOS or Android).

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: So...

        "many companies are, more or less, happily wedded to Windows stacks."

        Happily wedded to old Windows stacks.

        FTFY

        When "old" becomes "obsolete" and "wedded" becomes "enslaved" it's time to review the market.

    4. alain williams Silver badge

      Re: So...

      and when there finding that RedHat/CentOS is supported for 10 years - which means that existing applications will not be broken by OS patches for a decade.

    5. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: So...

      That just depends on what software you're using - and that's what Microsoft is betting on. The average enterprise environment is a bit more complex than a small office setup.

      You may be using applications for which there are no _professional_ Linux alternatives (albeit there could be OSX ones - and that can be another migration path), or there are no Linux version at all (i.e. specific and custom software, maybe running expensive devices). WINE may be too risky to be used in many situations.

      There could be also the whole management issue, you may like it or not, but Windows desktop and users are easier to manage using Active Directory and related tools. Sure, Puppet and the like can help, but you have to factor in also the costs of migrating all your IT skills to different tools, and the risks of more errors while getting proficient involved.

      Maybe one day Linux distro will agree on a common AD competitor (with decent tools) and will make Linux even a more compelling alternative even on desktops.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Abandonware?

        "You may be using applications for which there are no _professional_ Linux alternatives "

        That could certainly apply if the application is abandoned already, in which case some migration strategy is needed anyway.

        More relevantly, what do you think is going through the minds of _professional_ Windows-dependent app developers and vendors at the moment? Do you not think that many of them are quietly evaluating their next generation options, prompted by MS making it increasingly clear that Windows is becoming a cloud service, either Windows 10 Enterprise on a corporate cloud, or Windows 10 everything else on an Internet cloud?

        Cloud doesn't suit everyone. Not every user, not every admin, not every developer.

        Follow the money.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Abandonware?

          You could be surprised how many users care only if their needed applications are available and run, and care little about the underlying OS.

          Windows 10 may be an issue for many of us who don't like slurping and may have to support it in the harsher environment MS has decided to create, but users won't care until, and only until, their applications have issues.

          If there were the same application on Linux, you could easily move them. The problem is Linux lacks too many professional applications, for several and different reasons. When clones exists, some are good, but often not good enough. There are some de facto standard applications you can't really work without unless you're looking for troubles. Often, there's no replacement because they are very specific and/or custom made applications.

          I've seen many Linux desktop replaced by OSX ones because of applications availability. You can still run most *nix software, and also all the OSX applications. I've seen a lot of developers also getting OSX machines when they could.

          Even if they are abandoned applications, they may still run on a recent Windows. Replacing them with Linux ones? While you can find a lot of "Linux" developers if you can replace them with web ones, there are far less that can develop desktop applications. Linux never got friendly IDEs and frameworks to develop applications quickly, and there are far less developers available, making them more expensive also.

          1. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: Abandonware?

            Windows 10 may be an issue for many of us who don't like slurping and may have to support it in the harsher environment MS has decided to create, but users won't care until, and only until, their applications have issues.

            But at the heart of this is MS's fundamental problem and obsession, namely maintaining customer awareness of the Windows brand. Hence why, just like an attention seeking child, they feel the need to find new ways of thrusting it into users faces and drawing attention to it.Even though, as you point out, users are more interested in being able to access and share documents across a wide variety of devices and OS's.

            Unfortunately, what MS haven't realised is with a subscription model it doesn't matter if users forget about the OS, just so long as they keep paying the subscription. In fact with a subscription model, I suggest it is more important that change happens smoothly and so users do forget, otherwise the service will gain a reputation for being unreliable and users will switch...

    6. Shadow Systems Silver badge

      Re: So...

      I can only speak for myself, but my current Win7Pro64 machine will be the last one I own with Windows on it. Between MSHQ's attempts to force Win10 down my throat, Win10's total lack of ability for me to choose which updates to apply if any, the fact that those updates have a VERY strong probability of rendering my screen reader (& by extension my computer) inoperable, constantly ignoring my user settings in order to "entice me to upgrade" (What part of "No Means No!" do they not comprehend?), I'm sick & fekking tired of the MS treadmill.

      I've been researching my next computer, trying to decide between Apple & Linux. I need the Screen Reader Environment (SRE) in order to use the computer at all, & Apple has the best SRE by far hands down. Unfortunately they'll charge me more for a 4th gen Dual Core 3GHz with 8Gigs of RAM & a 250GB Sata-3 SSD than I'm entirely comfortable with paying. For what they want I can save over $200 & buy a 6th gen i7 4GHz with 32Gigs of RAM & a 250Gb M.2 SSD from System76 instead. Apple may have the best SRE, but I can't see paying MORE for mere 4th gen hardware, especially not when I can use the savings to buy a Support Contract from S76 *on top* of the 2 year warranty.

      And that's what it's boiled down to, Apple or Linux, older hardware but a top notch SRE versus brand new hardware & a hopefully working SRE.

      MS has done a great job of pushing their new OS, they've pushed me so hard I'm jumping off the Windows treadmill & getting a Linux machine instead.

      1. energystar
        Alert

        Obvious is...

        Obvious is you are a SUPER-STABILITY consumer. There are legions of you. Wishing you to find the a suitable provider.

    7. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: So...

      Well the evidence from some years back is that the actual cost of a desktop migration from Win X to Win Y is very similar to Win X to Linux. However, the areas where costs are incurred are user training and (initial) support. Although this does assume both the equivalence of Windows and Linux applications (eg. MS Office == LibreOffice) and that all business applications support a Linux client.

      However, this analysis of MS's Win10 update policy announcement, if correct, significantly increases the level of on-going build support a business is going to have to perform. Which will start to make the use of a LTS Linux desktop build much more attractive, particularly as I suspect few businesses will look kindly on an IT department asking for an increased budget with no commensurate bottom line benefit.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Happy

    I like the wording

    Windows 10's Current Branch for Business (CBB), a strain of Windows 10

    Makes Windows 10 seem like an infection. Quite apt

    1. Jedit

      "Makes Windows 10 seem like an infection. Quite apt"

      As mentioned in posts ad nauseam: it is an infection.

      Got a pop-up yesterday telling me when my Windows 10 upgrade was scheduled. Microsoft need to be hit with the world's biggest anti-trust suit.

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge

        Re: "Makes Windows 10 seem like an infection. Quite apt"

        "Got a pop-up yesterday telling me when my Windows 10 upgrade was scheduled. Microsoft need to be hit with the world's biggest anti-trust suit."

        I'm waiting for a 'The Register' article on this. Saw one on Tom's Hardware, e-mailed URL to Reg staff yesterday...

        http://www.tomshardware.com/news/windows-10-auto-schedules-updates,31802.html

        El Reg, this one's pretty heinous. As bad as the malware-looking "upgrade now" or "upgrade later"

        1. Michael H.F. Wilkinson Silver badge

          Re: "Makes Windows 10 seem like an infection. Quite apt"

          I didn't get that pop-up. Looks like GWX control panel is working.

          Win 10 may be better on various fronts, but I resent the way they are trying to force feed us the OS, as much as I resent the data slurping and forced upgrades embedded in it. I have several data capture applications that work under Win 7 and 8.X. When capturing a long sequence of data (like the 176 GB from the Mercury transit), I do not want this interrupted by some upgrade MS foists upon me. I do tend to keep my system updated, but I also do want some degree of control.

        2. Jedit

          "As bad as the malware-looking "upgrade now" or "upgrade later""

          Came home to something similar yesterday, except that one was "Install now" or "Install tonight". Nowhere was an option given to not install, although closing the window without clicking either button will do it. This crap is unforgivable.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      I like the naming

      Is CBB pronunced CeeBeeBee?

      Here in the UK, CBeebies is a TV channel for very young kids. And CBBC is a channel for marginally older kids.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You seem to have forgotten

    About Long Term Service Branch (LTSB). Thankfully all our Windows 10 Enterprise Agreement licences are LTSB which means we can move to Windows 10 but run the legacy method of patching rather than going down the evergreen route and then worrying about the inability of our application vendors to keep up.

    1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

      Re: You seem to have forgotten

      LTSB: for the privileged few only!

    2. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: You seem to have forgotten

      How long is your LTSB?

      Are all of the OS things covered, or is Edge, etc, excluded?

    3. John Bailey

      Re: You seem to have forgotten

      "About Long Term Service Branch (LTSB). Thankfully all our Windows 10 Enterprise Agreement licences are LTSB which means we can move to Windows 10 but run the legacy method of patching rather than going down the evergreen route and then worrying about the inability of our application vendors to keep up."

      And if Microsoft decide to forget about it?

      So..

      You pay a protection fee to Microsoft to stop them updating your computers. And you see this as a good thing?

      How is this different to ransomware? Pay more, or we update your system. Over and over and over...

      1. Adrian 4 Silver badge

        Re: You seem to have forgotten

        'Nice little system you've got there. Wouldn't it be a pity if it got upgraded ?'

    4. Roo
      Windows

      Re: You seem to have forgotten

      "Thankfully all our Windows 10 Enterprise Agreement licences are LTSB which means we can move to Windows 10 but run the legacy method of patching rather than going down the evergreen route and then worrying about the inability of our application vendors to keep up."

      If you are unlucky (and you will be at some stage) you will end up with a situation where a third party binary needs the latest Win 10 to work...

      1. 1Rafayal

        Re: You seem to have forgotten

        But isn't the whole point of this particular whinge that there is no "latest" build to work against?

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: You seem to have forgotten

        If you are unlucky (and you will be at some stage) you will end up with a situation where a third party binary needs the latest Win 10 to work...

        I suspect from my experience that you are more likely to encounter a situation where a third-party client binary eg. ERP, Financials, CRM, Speech recognition, Billing system etc. is only supported on what is now an unsupported and unobtainable Win10 LTSB release... It was common for these major products with small install bases to not be proactive in their support of the latest offerings from MS.

        Remember one of the big reasons why the move from XP was so traumatic was because the security model and driver architecture for Vista and 7 was different. Hence for many companies the scheduling of their update was dependent upon third-parties delivering new versions...

  6. RIBrsiq
    FAIL

    Meanwhile, in the real world, some Vista drivers, nevermind applications, work just fine on Windows 10...

    Corollary: Windows 10 works just fine on some ancient hardware for which no driver support beyond Vista exists.

    So: will Windows 10 cure cancer and bring world peace? Obviously not! But is it worse than cancer and/or the Coming of the Beast and the End of Days...? Probably not.

    1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

      "But is [Windows 10] worse than"

      "cancer" Debatable, but probably not. I dislike chemo intensely.

      "the Coming of the Beast" \m/ I'm mostly on The Beast's side, so yes, Win 10 is WAY worse.

      "the End of Days" if the world ended we wouldn't have to use Win 10, so yeah, Win 10 is worse.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Chemo can do a lot of collateral damage. Survival can come at a high price. Hoping that Windows 10 won't be that painful but it's an interesting analogy. Of course in this case there are viable alternatives.

      2. RIBrsiq
        Happy

        @Trevor

        You're so adorable! Have an upvote!!

        1. Dave 126 Silver badge

          Re: @Trevor

          If only cancer could be cured by restoring from a known-good (genetic) system image!

          1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

            Re: @Trevor

            If only cancer could be cured by restoring from a known-good (genetic) system image!

            Actually....

  7. sikejsudjek

    Windows 10 is a moving target and likely to continue to be so. Surely moving as much as possible to Linux has to be worth considering ? At the very least it isn't spying on you. My linux systems are more stable than windows 10 too.

    1. Dave 126 Silver badge

      For some people, sure.

      Some applications, in finance, engineering and content creation are still tied to Windows, though VMs and and WINE are sometimes viable options. For some of these applications, I see them becoming platform-agnostic before they become ported specifically to Linux - though the end result (no barrier to using Linux as primary OS) will effectively be the same.

      A curious driver that I haven't seen much comment on - some organisations using fleets of old, second hand (but still perfectly fast enough for office tasks) PCs, where adding Windows and Office licenses would multiply the cost of the machine by a factor of four or five. (though I can't be arsed to find to find the info and do the sums to factor in the power consumption cost of using Pentium 4-era PCs over more modern efficient machines)

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        A curious driver that I haven't seen much comment on - some organisations using fleets of old, second hand

        One of my clients has gone down this route to facilitate their growth. With a little care, there can be very little real difference between the power consumption of a 3~4 year old desktop system and a brand new one. However, some of the older Xeon-based professional workstations, whilst still blisteringly fast are power hungry and noisy, compared to modern i7 systems with similar benchmark scores.

        The only problem they've had is locating refurbished systems that don't come with new Windows licences, since we're installing a Linux desktop on these systems.

  8. This post has been deleted by its author

  9. redpawn Silver badge

    You shouldn't be

    running non Microsoft products in any case if you choose 10. Not that they would ever break their competitors products but computers just work better with genuine MS products. Hop aboard the software as a service band wagon and drink unlimited updates all the time. What fun! Who else offers to take total control of your computers for no extra fee? (don't answer that).

    1. BobChip
      Coat

      Re: You shouldn't be

      More accurately, you shouldn’t be running (any) Microsoft products in any case ......

      Agreed, Microsoft products work better in an MS environment. They damn well ought to. But the boot is stamping on your bank balance as well as the treadmill.

      COMPUTERS do NOT necessarily work better with genuine MS products. It does NOT follow that they are automatically the "best" products. MS do NOT sell products to cover anything beyond a small fraction of the most common of users needs. They rely on other software manufacturers do do this, and this is usually where the problems begin.

      In my world of work (which is where the money comes from) almost everything of practical value and utility was written for and lives in a Linux environment, for which I am profoundly grateful.

      And I have the benefit of 5 or more years of LTS between major upgrades.

    2. LDS Silver badge

      Re: You shouldn't be

      You may not have noticed MS doesn't cover every IT needs - especially client-side. Without a lot of non-MS software, Windows would never have gone far.

      Is it clever to put a far bigger burden on all those developers because you need to slurp user data faster and broader? Not every ISV has the resources to quickly catch up with never ending changes, even if fully committed to use MS tooling - which is not always feasible anyway.

      Google may not care about deploying changes to their service every time they like because their services are not an OS upon which a lot of other application run - and have been running for years.

      If someone at MS believes it can just ape the Google model and make a lot of money, he or she must be an underpants gnome.

      1. Dave 126 Silver badge

        Re: You shouldn't be

        @Bobchip + LDS

        You might be arguing with @redpawn at cross-purposes... his comment seemed pretty ironic.

  10. J J Carter Silver badge

    Old Skool thinking

    Our strategy is automated regression testing with Selenium before rolling out Windows 10 enhancements at pretty much the cadence set by MSFT (also Office 2016 etc.)

    We've determined the potential impact of having unpatched zero-day exploits is greater than the impact of unexpected side-effects of an upgrade. If there is an issue, the devops team will swarm it and roll-out fix with Jenkins.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Old Skool thinking

      " If there is an issue, the devops team will swarm it and roll-out fix with Jenkins."

      It is likely that any problem will need fixes in supplier's subsystems. Devops is all very well - if you have full vertical integration of hardware and software that was designed in-house. Those days are long gone. The weakest link in the chain will be the speed/ability with which your suppliers (and their suppliers ...ad nauseam) can diagnose a system interaction and fix their hardware/software components. Circumvention may be impossible.

      1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

        Re: Old Skool thinking

        And there is every chance that the supplier may decided 'We can't fix it' or 'We can't fix it for 6 months' and then where are you?

        Don't answer that.

        [update]

        I had this sudden memory of the old MS Mantra

        "The days' not done until Lotus won't run"

        Could MS make competing products compete with the likes of CRM, Dynamics, SQLServer, LibreOffice just not run on Windows? (shudders)

    2. Charlie Clark Silver badge
      FAIL

      Re: Old Skool thinking

      Our strategy is automated regression testing with Selenium

      Selenium is a browser testing framework. How does this fit in with changes to Windows APIs?

      1. Roo
        Windows

        Re: Old Skool thinking

        "Selenium is a browser testing framework. How does this fit in with changes to Windows APIs?"

        In fairness to the OP Selenium would be adequate (and appropriate) if they are simply testing the client side of a web-app. Surprised the OP got downvoted, seemed like a sane approach to me if you are committed to supporting Win 10 clients.

        1. Sandtitz Silver badge

          Re: Old Skool thinking

          "Surprised the OP got downvoted"

          Not surprising at all. Anything pro-MS usually equals downvotes around here. And vice versa.

          1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

            Re: Old Skool thinking

            > Anything pro-MS usually equals downvotes around here.

            Incorrect. For why specifically J. J. Carter tends to collect downvotes, see his comment history. My impression is that when he's not trolling (which he is almost all the time) then he just makes things up.

          2. Roo
            Windows

            Re: Old Skool thinking

            "Not surprising at all. Anything pro-MS usually equals downvotes around here. And vice versa."

            In fairness it's not unknown for me to downvote pro-MS stuff. :)

            1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
              Happy

              Re: Old Skool thinking

              > In fairness it's not unknown for me to downvote pro-MS stuff. :)

              Bad boy 8^)

              Have to admit I rarely downvote, I do that only if a post is intentionally annoying and shitty (hello J. J. Carter!). I certainly give at least ten times more upvotes than downvotes. If something is decently written and/or I learn a little thing, clicky upvote!

        2. Charlie Clark Silver badge
          WTF?

          Re: Old Skool thinking

          In fairness to the OP Selenium would be adequate (and appropriate) if they are simply testing the client side of a web-app.

          So, again: WTF would this have to do with changes in Windows components which is what this article is about.

          1. Roo
            Windows

            Re: Old Skool thinking

            "So, again: WTF would this have to do with changes in Windows components which is what this article is about."

            That's an easy WTF to answer: The web browser that Selenium drives makes use of the windows components.

            1. bill.laslo

              Re: Old Skool thinking

              Hint: the guy is trolling

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Old Skool thinking

      "the devops team will swarm it and roll-out fix with Jenkins"

      How is that even a sentence (regardless of whether the Michael is being taken or not)? Pseuds Corner is over there at Private Eye --> http://www.private-eye.co.uk/sections.php?section_link=pseuds_corner

  11. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Stability and predictability

    Successful IT use has always needed two things - stability and predictability. All hardware or software has dormant faults just waiting for their pathological condition to arise. Any change - no matter how insignificant or peripheral - can be the trigger for a great tea trolley disaster.

    In the early 1970s with new O/Ss we were patching almost daily - and had teams of hardware/software diagnosticians whose dedicated job was System Support. Even when things became apparently stable - it was not unusual to come in one morning to find a pile of system dumps waiting for attention. The first question was - "who has just employed a new application programmer?". Some times it was just a new application user. New hands were the ones who hit the dormant bugs - either because they made silly errors or their style differed from the existing team's well-patched path.

    The more general question was "What's been changed?".

    An IT world of continuous OS and application churn will need an increase in Support staff. Yet the systems are now more complex and the OS/subsystem source codes are rarely made available. Even a supplier may be incorporating a licensed subsystem that has several degrees of separation from its originator. It is the Tower of Babel built on foundations of sand.

    Now I am retired I can use that immortal El Reg phrase "popcorn please".

    1. nkuk

      Re: Stability and predictability

      I just don't understand why businesses aren't clamoring for an "LTS" version of Windows 10 that has a fixed codebase and gets stability and security fixes only.

      If I was responsible for a companies IT policy I wouldn't build it on the foundation of shifting sand that is Windows 10 as-a-service, where what works today might not work tomorrow and the feature you use this week might be depreciated, like Wi-Fi sharing, in a future build.

      1. Roo
        Windows

        Re: Stability and predictability

        "I just don't understand why businesses aren't clamoring for an "LTS" version of Windows 10 that has a fixed codebase and gets stability and security fixes only."

        They are, but vendor doesn't want to do that. The customers need to adapt or choose something else if that is a hard and fast requirement, and bear the cost of the change either way. Personally I think customers would better served by reduce their dependence on products (and vendors) that don't fit their requirements, but ultimately it's up to them to look at the costs & benefits and make their own choice.

      2. energystar
        IT Angle

        Re: Stability and predictability

        IT still on baby diapers for a few decades [centuries?] more. Still amazed at how high Business, Gov, Intel and Mil put the bets [and their asses] on it!

      3. energystar
        Gimp

        Re: Stability and predictability

        "...the foundation of shifting sand that is Windows 10 as-a-service..."

        This is a GRAVE ACCUSATION. What would Microsoft answer to that?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: great tea trolley disaster

      Cultural context?

      http://www.aguter.plus.com/bristow/disaster.htm ?

      Think a bit like Dilbert. But much much earlier.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: great tea trolley disaster

        I hoped someone might get the reference - but that web page was unexpected. It obviously struck a chord with a few people over the last 40 years. My Bristow paperbacks are in a box in the garage - along with Peanuts, B.C., The Wizard of ID etc. The shelf space is reserved for Giles, The Perishers, The Fosdyke Saga, and others of that ilk. They mark my progress through life - all forerunners of Dilbert each in their own way.

        This takes me back to my early days on a support visit to the computer bureau in Hartree House, London (above Whiteley's store).

        Worked till about 4am in an apparently deserted building apart from the operators on the top floor. Then at 2am there was an eerie rattling sound along the echoing corridors - and a tea trolley arrived. When the office was finally closed the company were required by the lease to return it to its original condition. There was an enquiry about where they could get the necessary rats.

        Remember that trolley very well as it was my 21st birthday - in 1968 too - and my own office had to wait a few days to take me to the pub for lunch. On that afternoon we moved offices internally - which in those days was a DIY job. Apparently I was a little unsteady on steering my end of a desk up the stairs - even though I only drank Coca-Cola. Which brings "Peterson of the PR department" to mind.

  12. Novex

    If there's one thing...

    ...I've noted it's that people running businesses (especially smaller ones, the SMEs) don't like to have to keep adapting to change. They want their systems to remain consistent, reliable, and predictable. Windows 10 is basically saying 'f**k you, we don't care, we just want to keep shoving stuff down your pipe that you didn't ask for, and to grab all your data so we can advertise sh*t at you' (I'm paraphrasing, btw ;-).

    If the business users of this type can find a different way of doing things which keeps stable desktops and servers that doesn't require mollycoddling to keep them running, then they'll take it. If that's Remix OS, or Linux Mint, or some other flavour of OS, then that's where they'll go.

    Really, MS, do you think that you can turn all PCs into Xboxes, and particularly business critical systems? You need to wake up and smell the coffee.

    1. 1Rafayal

      Re: If there's one thing...

      Hm yes, terrible Microsoft forcing business users to accept updates.

      Are we going to have the same bullshit trotted out each time the Reg needs to get some traffic through the site? We already know that SME's are be able to purchase Windows Enterprise licences. Which means they would be in charge of updating their own installations. Which means no automated updates.

      1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

        Re: If there's one thing...

        "We already know that SME's are be able to purchase Windows Enterprise licences."

        What about SMBs, those businesses that can't (other, maybe than Trotters' Independent Traders) aspire to call themselves enterprises? What about individual professionals? Businesses that don't have the spare cash to upgrade to Enterprise licenses?

        Are you telling them that Windows is no longer a suitable OS for their purposes?

        No, scrap the interrogative, you are telling them that.

        1. 1Rafayal

          Re: If there's one thing...

          We have already been through this numerous times, and on each occasion you have been shown how each example can get an Enterprise license.

          I get that you want to keep up the anti Microsoft narrative, but repeating the same things over and over again even when it's been explained to you that your understanding of the situation is incorrect?

          What's the point?

          1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

            Re: @1Rafayal

            Actually you are quite right, it is perfectly in MS legal rights to make the stable business version a premium price, and for their shareholders it is the obvious and reasonable way to get more value from the MS ecosystem (given the shift to phone-based use for most personal applications that MS failed to crack).

            I leave it as an exercise for the reader to compute if following this route is better or worse than going to an alternative OS.

          2. hplasm Silver badge
            Gimp

            Re: If there's one thing...

            "We have already been through this numerous times, and on each occasion you have been shown how each example can get an Enterprise license."

            Well, put your cash where your mouth is, and offer to pay the SMBs for it.

            Thought not.

            1. 1Rafayal

              Re: If there's one thing...

              You mean the same smb's who could buy the MS action pack, which comes with 10 Windows Enterprise licenses as well as office etc, for less than the cost of 10 Windows Pro licenses together?

              Really?

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Re: If there's one thing...

                Who are the target customers for the Action Pack? Is it "for partners who build, install, and service solutions on the Microsoft platform." [1]

                What are the licence Ts+Cs for the Action Pack? Are they usable for direct revenue generating purposes, or for commercial purposes, or for personal purposes? [2] If not, what?

                Do you need to be signed up to some kind of authorised MS business partner program for access to these licences? What are the requirements and the costs for that program ? One-time and ongoing?

                Is the Action Pack a one time buy or a subscription? [0] If subscription, what happens to the software if you don't renew the subscription, both in licencing terms (licence is not valid) and in the real world (software stops working????)?

                What are the penalties for breaking the licence Ts+Cs of an Action Pack subscription?

                Feel free to come back when you can give people helpful open and honest answers to those questions. Otherwise, if the mods are reading this... have a quiet word in 1Rafayal's ear, maybe? You wouldn't want MS to find your site has been permitting contributions encouraging abuse of MS's generous licencing would you?

                Meanwhile readers wishing to be definitively informed and to reduce their risks of a visit from the MS licence police may wish to look at the organ grinder rather than his mate:

                e.g.

                [0] https://partner.microsoft.com/en-GB/membership/action-pack (or local equivalent)

                "Action Pack is an affordable yearly subscription to software, support, and benefits for businesses that want to begin, build, and grow their Microsoft practice in the cloud-first, mobile-first world."

                [1] https://mspartner.microsoft.com/bg/bg/Pages/Membership/action-pack-subscriptions.aspx

                [2] https://mspartner.microsoft.com/en/uk/pages/membership/downloads/software-licensing-for-action-pack-subscription-partners.aspx

                1. 1Rafayal

                  Re: If there's one thing...

                  I am sorry, I assumed that the individual would be able to make their own minds up as to whether or not the T&C's for the action pack are suitable for them or not.

                  Or would you also like to tell the world + dog that this is also as evil as Windows 10? I mean, why let people make their own minds up when you can tell them what to think with only half the story?

                  1. ecofeco Silver badge

                    Re: If there's one thing...

                    "I am sorry, I assumed that the individual would be able to make their own minds up as to whether or not the T&C's for the action pack are suitable for them or not."

                    Why would you assume small business owners are IT savvy? Because they sure as fuck are not.

                  2. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: If there's one thing...

                    "why let people make their own minds up when you can tell them what to think with only half the story?"

                    You're the one that's started with the "half the story" about where Action Pack is applicable, and then apparently doesn't want to answer a few simple questions around your story.

                    People need to have enough actual facts, a clear enough picture, to make their own minds up as to whether their usage of the product/service is legit or not.

                    Maybe interested readers could ask some relevant questions to an MS authorised spokesperson rather than relying on some random voice (like me or 1Rafayal) on a random forum.

                    Most folks really don't need the nice people from the BSA doing a software audit when they least expect it. Or their equivalents from MS.

                    Meanwhile here are a couple of snippets 1Rafayal posted a couple of weeks ago in

                    http://forums.theregister.co.uk/forum/2/2016/05/05/microsoft_windows_10_pro_store/

                    "take a look at the MS Action Pack, for £310 a year, you will get a couple of Windows 10 Enterprise licenses, amongst a whole bunch of other software you might want, like Office and stuff you might not want, like Dynamics."

                    So it's an annual subscription, would you say?

                    "once you have stumped up for the first year, you can keep and use all the license keys for as long as you want, as long as you keep a record of them."

                    So maybe it's not an annual subscription, maybe it's a buy it once own it forever?

                    Clear as mud?

                    Go look at the originals in context to check whether I'm misrepresenting.

                    Then compare with the official MS-provided information and see if you can work out what the real picture is here.

                    1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

                      Re: If there's one thing...

                      For the record, Action Packs are emphatically not a "buy once, use forever". Action Pack licenses are only valid so long as you hold a valid Action Pack subscription. In addition, you must update to the latest versions of the software when the Action Pack benefits update.

                      Source of this knowledge: many Microsoft audits where this discussion has been repeated ad nauseam.

                      The purpose of an Action Pack is to enable a Microsoft Partner to stay up to date with the latest Microsoft Technologies by implementing them in their environment in a production fashion. For testing, the partner is expected to purchase an MSDN subscription.

                      Small Businesses looking to buy Windows Enterprise in perpetuity (or on a subscription basis) are goign to need Enterprise Agreements (see: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/Licensing/licensing-programs/open-license.aspx#tab=2) and the minimum number of systems licensed is 5.

                      This means if you do not have an enterprise agreement want one single Windows 10 Enterprise Long Term Service Branch license you must purchase five licenses. Note that you cannot get VSA (for remote access to your Windows instances) unless you purchase Windows on a subscription basis.

                      Expect to pay significantly more for an Enterprise license than a Pro license.

                      Now: enjoy paying way the hell more for almost as much control over your Windows 10 instance as you had over your Windows 7 instance!

                      1. bill.laslo

                        Re: If there's one thing...

                        @Trevor, I believe there is also an open subscription that offers similar benefits

                        1. Trevor_Pott Gold badge

                          Re: If there's one thing...

                          @bill.laslo: the open subscription still requires minimum 5 licenses. Same problems as rest. You don't get the Windows 10 that is almost what people actually wanted unless you're prepared to buy in to a minimum 5 extraordinarily expensive licenses to get it.

                          Lovely.

                          1. bill.laslo

                            Re: If there's one thing...

                            @Trevor

                            Making the action pack the most attractive way of getting Windows Enterprise for a small business, no?

                    2. bill.laslo

                      Re: If there's one thing...

                      Why don't you just let people make up their own minds on what licensing is best for their organisations?

                      Each time the question of business not being able to use Windows 10 due to the automated updates has been brought up, it has been down to the readership to point out that in fact no, this is not the case. With the correct license you do not need to worry about your entire desktop infrastructure being updated overnight.

                      It has also been up to the readership to explain how to obtain the licenses needed for this, especially as how The Register is either unable to provide such an explanation or would prefer to let confusion reign in order to drive those clicks.

                      It isn't the job of The Reg to police people's intentions when it comes to buying software.

          3. Roland6 Silver badge

            Re: If there's one thing...

            We have already been through this numerous times, and on each occasion you have been shown how each example can get an Enterprise license.

            And on each occasion 1Rafayal, you have failed to explain how an SME with simple IT needs can become aware of the need for such a licence and purchase said licence. I've yet to see any high street retailer or online retailer (eg. Dell, Lenovo, HP etc.) offer Enterprise licenses with their products.

            Remember the vast majority of SME's are not in the IT industry and hence IT is just something they need to support the real function of their business.

            Also there are a surprising number of "PC Support" businesses that focus on the SME market that also have zero knowledge or experience of MS volume licensing...

            1. 1Rafayal

              Re: If there's one thing...

              @roland6

              Being an sme and having adequate IT support in your organisation has nothing to do with the nature of that sme's business. Things maybe trickier for the smb area, sure, but not for the sme. The solutions for purchasing these licenses have been discussed before over and over again - even on this comment section, again.

              If I were running an sme and wanted to understand the implications of Windows 10 for my organisation with regards to the updates I would do one or both of the following : contact Microsoft to see what the situation mean for me and my business and see what I can do as an sme to control updates within my own infrastructure and/or make sure I am employing someone who understands the above.

              So far the argument is "Microsoft is going to destroy business with forced updates". It really isn't. Microsoft may kill the consumer market for desktop operating systems, but if it does someone else will step into that gap - if there is still any money to be made there.

              And what do high street retailers have to do with any of this?

              1. Roland6 Silver badge

                Re: If there's one thing...

                @1Rayafal - "If I were running an sme ..."

                Many thanks for that quote, it says it all, namely you don't actually know what you are talking about.

                Also if you actually had dealings with SME businesses you would understand the role of high street retailers - clue it is one of the reasons MS have been so successful...

                1. 1Rafayal

                  Re: If there's one thing...

                  @Roland6

                  You don't actually know what an sme is, do you?

                  An sme isn't a business that happens to have a couple of laptops or desktops that are used by staff for sending emails and invoices, even at the s end of the of the sme spectrum.

                  SME's don't go shopping on the hight street for their IT needs, they rarely have in the past and they certainly cannot/don't now. Same goes for their IT function, they don't just pop down to PC World to pick up a copy of MS Office and a new coffee machine.

                  An sme is an organisation that literally has millions of pounds to call on for immediate investment, even if you use the varying definitions of the term that are used across the world. They are not organisations that are too stretched to buy the next months worth of printer toner etc.

                  These are organisations that will have a dedicated IT function of some description, one that will be providing the guidance needed for the whole organisation, regardless of what ever software, hardware or other fad they might be running.

                  You are confusing the the term 'sme', which is small to medium enterprise by the way, with a small business - the two things couldn't be more different.

                  If I own a small business, for example a roofing company, and perhaps I have four machines and some smartphones, that doesn't make me an enterprise at all. I might have a guy in the business that 'knows' PC's, but he will in no way be an IT specialist and he might have upgraded all my machines to Windows 10 for no other reason to get rid of the nag screen. The chances are that they don't even use software that is installed on any of those machines anymore, instead relying on web based alternatives - I don't know if it was your good self who mentioned this or not, but unless the business has an IT focus, then all they really need is an invoicing platform and an email provider, both of which can be done without any software being installed on the premises .

                  If a forced Windows 10 update makes all the machines go wonky, it doesn't matter as the business can just turn on another machine, that doesn't run the terrible Windows 10 and pick up where it left off.

                  This is essentially the state of play that the small business has been moving towards for what, the last decade?

                  1. Anonymous Coward
                    Anonymous Coward

                    Re: If there's one thing...

                    "You don't actually know what an sme is, do you?"

                    Do you? You've given us your definition. It doesn't really tally with the industry standard one. Where does yours come from? It sounded to me like you were trying to distinguish between SMB (B = Business) and SME, and indeed these are your words on the subject:

                    "You are confusing the the term 'sme', which is small to medium enterprise by the way, with a small business - the two things couldn't be more different."

                    That's not the way the rest of the world sees it.

                    Readers might like to look up a definition of SME. Here's one somebody prepared earlier:

                    "The abbreviation "SME" is used in the European Union and by international organizations such as the World Bank, the United Nations and the World Trade Organization (WTO). "

                    ...

                    In July 2011, the European Commission said it would open a consultation on the definition of SMEs in 2012. In Europe, there are three broad parameters which define SMEs:

                    Micro-enterprises have up to 10 employees

                    Small enterprises have up to 50 employees

                    Medium-sized enterprises have up to 250 employees

                    ...

                    In the UK a company is defined as being an SME if it meets two out of three criteria: it has a turnover of less than £25m, it has fewer than 250 employees, it has gross assets of less than £12.5m.

                    "

                    from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Small_and_medium-sized_enterprises but verifiable elsewhere.

                    Readers still in any doubt can go read the rest and wonder what 1Rafayal is on about.

                    Unless of course there's a better story.

  13. Dwarf Silver badge

    Russian roulette - business edition

    So, in summary, some external party thinks they can update the underlying OS in whatever way they want and it will be the application developers fault if apps break due to 'compatibility issues'. I'm sure that will be fine as vendors are well known for supporting applications forever and responding rapidly to defects - all without expecting a big pile of cash and nobody ever bespokes a product to make it fit the business.

    We also know that Microsoft has a great track record for maintaining back compatibility, just look at office products, VB6, Active-X, their browser (whatever it was called), powershell, etc.

    Just imagine the extra fun of working in IT front line support - suddenly 'did it work previously' becomes a useless diagnostic hint.

    There is also the little tiny problem that every business will then face of 'Will my company function today ?'

    I can't think of a single enterprise customer who would have a test team big enough to test everything on this sort of frequency, let alone the development and budget to support fixing the bugs that will invariably come out. What then happens to the smaller businesses who don't have those teams nor the available budget to waste on constant IT change - where is the value to the business ?

    From where I'm looking, suddenly Windows becomes a major business risk.

    1. quxinot

      Re: Russian roulette - business edition

      Upvoted.

      If your business depends on the desktop, you must have control of it. Windows 10 doesn't allow that, and is unfit for business.

      (Also unfit for regular users for the same reason.)

      1. 1Rafayal

        Re: Russian roulette - business edition

        Even though Windows 10 Enterprise does give you full control....

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Russian roulette - business edition

        Upvoted indeed.

        "If your business depends on the desktop"

        There's certainly that to think about. Maybe MS should try thinking about it.

        Is there also an equivalent of this mess for server software as well? If so, where can one read about it? Or have the server software people not yet gone totally mad?

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    People have been coping with continuous updates to browsers for a while (at least Firefox and Chrome)

    The plus side of this continuous-small-increments approach is that you should never have to deal with a big-bang XP-to-7 type of migration, where the problem is nobody even knows who developed the legacy systems or where the source code is.

    That assumes that Microsoft never decide to introduce a re-imagined Windows 11, which can't be ruled out completely. However the slow decline of Windows and PCs into irrelevance makes that less likely over time.

    Savvy users will make all their business apps have web frontends - or TN3270 :-)

    1. LDS Silver badge

      Yes, and latest browser are hindering me to access older server management services. I.e. older Dell iDRAC no longer works and Dell will never update them.

      1. GrumpenKraut Silver badge

        > Dell iDRAC

        Last time I had the pleasure to work with that (admittedly some years ago) it somehow got the moniker iDreck pretty quickly. Once running it worked OK-ish, but getting it there, Jesus fecking Christ!

    2. Novex

      But with Firefox at least, you can install an older version and keep it that way. I'm not sure how easy it would be to get hold of older extensions though, but once installed they can also be kept stuck at older versions, if necessary. There would be potential security risks of course if older versions don't get security patches.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "older versions of extensions"

        "I'm not sure how easy it would be to get hold of older extensions though"

        This may be a daft question, but shouldn't IT departments be keeping local copies of externally-acquired stuff they're deploying, for this very reason (amongst others)?

        Same for people outside IT departments too, really, but the IT departments have no excuse.

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge

      "the slow decline of Windows and PCs into irrelevance"

      you're wrong about that. you can't look at NEW computer sales to measure what people are actually using, particularly for business, which is still using windows and desktop/notebook computers.

      Although I'd like to see them use LINUX or BSD desktop/notebook computers...

      "Savvy users will make all their business apps have web frontends"

      Why, so they can look like "Universal" windows CRapps? Puh-lease...

      Better off using Py-gtk or Qt than web-based front-ends. Or wxWidgets [which you can translate an MFC appLICATION into with reasonable effort, as long as it's not relying on ".Not"].

      Then your GUI applications will run on Winders, Linux, Mac, maybe even Open Solaris. Whatever platform you want, pretty much.

      That'd kill the MICROSOFT OS NEAR-MONOPOLY really fast, wouldn't it?

  15. DougS Silver badge

    80% will be on Windows 10 by end of 2018??

    What a laugh, Gartner is on drugs as usual. Even after the extension in its lifetime I think we didn't see the 80% threshold for being off XP crossed until less than six months before the drop dead date for XP going off support. They will similarly wait until the last minute to go to Windows 10, because there's no reason and no incentive to move until the last minute - and I imagine there will be a lot of pressure on Microsoft to push out the end of support date for Windows 7 past the 2020 deadline.

    I wonder if the rumors about Microsoft offering a Windows 10.1 this fall are to shrink the support deadline for Windows 10. That's the reason why there was never a SP2 for Windows 7 because they didn't want to extend its date beyond 2020. By dropping service packs and moving to "different" OS versions, they can avoid pushing out the end of support date for Windows 10 and try to keep people on the upgrade treadmill longer.

    If they had the best interest of customers in mind they would have released a Windows 7 SP2 and maybe SP3, given the majority of customers are running it. Instead they are doing everything they can to push people off it onto Windows 10. If I were in charge of enterprise licensing, I'd take a real close look at the fine print in the license terms and what has changed between the Windows 7 days and today. I suspect they are trying to sneak a few fast ones there to screw customers and squeeze even more money out of them.

    1. Richard Plinston Silver badge

      Re: 80% will be on Windows 10 by end of 2018??

      > Gartner is on drugs as usual.

      These are the people that predicted Windows Phone would overtake iPhone by 2015.

      1. DougS Silver badge

        Re: 80% will be on Windows 10 by end of 2018??

        I forgot all about that prediction. Thanks for the reminder and the laugh!

  16. LDS Silver badge

    Basically, Microsoft is shifting its responsibility to you

    Once, an OS developer had the responsibility to ensure any change won't break the API "contracts" with the applications running on it. If a breakage was really needed to fix nasty bugs, it has to be rolled in with care and with proper warning to users.

    Now Satan Nadella decided that responsibility is yours. Windows will roll-in changes as it likes, and it's up to you to ensure your applications are compatible. If you're not a "business" user, you have to get was it's thrown at you even if it will hinder the application you need to work. And today even if you're not a business, you may perform many *critical* tasks on a PC - i.e. filing your tax documents and so on.

    This is a big change in the supplier/customer contract - and it's no surprise where it comes from. It is the offspring of a mentality where those up the ladder can throw s**t at those below without consequences.

    1. Charles 9 Silver badge

      Re: Basically, Microsoft is shifting its responsibility to you

      "This is a big change in the supplier/customer contract - and it's no surprise where it comes from. It is the offspring of a mentality where those up the ladder can throw s**t at those below without consequences."

      And they can, because you don't matter that much anymore. You disappear, someone else will take your place. And if all else fails, they can saw off the ladder or close off the walled garden and finish the war amongst themselves.

  17. jake Silver badge

    Lovely.

    Keep trying to shovel the mud out as it flows in from upstream, MS users.

    Or perhaps you could look into alternatives. Might be a learning curve, but ...

    ::shrugs::

    1. Roo
      Devil

      Re: Lovely.

      "Keep trying to shovel the mud out as it flows in from upstream, MS users."

      <CJ>

      Windows Users didn't get where they are today by using a stable platform.

      </CJ>

      1. energystar
        Alien

        Re: Lovely.

        Were are Windows Users Today? At least I know Apple Users live in a "walled" "Trumpled" wonder world...

    2. GrumpenKraut Silver badge
      Gimp

      Re: Lovely.

      @jake: your downvotes are courtesy of the prisonware fanboys. ----->

  18. thondwe

    Dependency Hell

    All platforms suffer from dependency hell, Windows, Linux, Java, PHP, .NET, Docker, ... If you have more than one app dependent on any one thing, an update will probably break at least one.

    Worse of course is that the supplier of that broken app won't keep up/have gone out of business, focused on another product...

    Application/OS Virtualization can remove some of it, at the cost of bundling all the dependencies with the App...

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: Dependency Hell

      there's an easy fix to that: a) static link [don't rely on already-installed non-updated shared libs], and b) install dependencies yourself, with name changes as needed.

      Example, if you need ffmpeg with your appLICATION, include ffmpeg source as part of the distro (for GPL compliance), and ship it with a re-named binary built from that source (or installed into a particular location), all nicely STATIC LINKED to avoid ANY dependency issues with shared libs / DLLs.

      With the exception of certain shared MICRO-SHAFT libraries, this is practical and generally does not increase the memory footprint by much. It's what *I* do. POSIX included.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Dependency Hell

        Pardon my ignorance, but if you static link to avoid dependency hell, doesn't that also mean that you don't get any more security fixes (for the stuff you've statically linked in) ever again?

        So doesn't that mean take you pick: dependency hell, or no more fixes for security vulnerabilites?

        Twenty odd years of NT and Linux, and that's where we are today. Worse than where we were in 1993. But at least it's shinier than 1993.

        1. Charles 9 Silver badge

          Re: Dependency Hell

          Well, that's life. Order and stability vs. chaos and evolution. Choose one. They're mutually exclusive with no middle ground. The former means you can get pwned, the latter means you can end up breaking yourself. Either way, you risk destruction, meaning the risk is unavoidable.

          IOW, Pick your Poison.

      2. energystar
        Childcatcher

        Re: Dependency Hell

        You could give the user option [through init scripts] to link to newer library, and test. Best of both worlds :)

        1. energystar
          Thumb Down

          Re: Dependency Hell

          The script could by itself build a library of ffmpeg version- ing, and stop at the first unapproved library by the user.

          1. energystar
            Pint

            Re: Dependency Hell

            On user un-approving the developer could be e-mailed by the script... The script could prompt the user for a short explanation for the back porting, also e-mailed...

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    You know you're in trouble when Steve Gibson is writing utilities to stop you in your tracks: https://www.grc.com/never10.htm

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Scared Sh*tless with W10 updates

    AC because i'm an utter knob because in the past I thought it would be a good idea to install a W10 PC as a file server into a tiny office. They use a SQL express DB as the backend for an app. I now have that PC totally locked down by disabling all windows updates because I simply don't trust an update to leave that office in a functioning state after an auto update. There are full system backups, but I don't even trust them for a bare metal restore.

    i'm on the fast ring and there's not been a relase that hasn't broke something. The error this time is Expression Web is dead.

    My single grip with any update is all the deleted MS apps keep coming back.

    1. Sandtitz Silver badge
      WTF?

      Re: Scared Sh*tless with W10 updates

      "There are full system backups, but I don't even trust them for a bare metal restore."

      You're right, you shouldn't trust them. You should be testing them every now and then.

      "i'm an utter knob...i'm on the fast ring and there's not been a relase that hasn't broke something."

      Windows Insider is a beta test program and the fast ring is more like alpha test program. I agree on your assessment about yourself.

    2. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

      Re: Scared Sh*tless with W10 updates

      "AC because i'm an utter knob because in the past I thought it would be a good idea to install a W10 PC as a file server into a tiny office. They use a SQL express DB as the backend for an app."

      Help is coming - maybe: SQL Server on Linux.

    3. energystar
      Go

      Re: Scared Sh*tless with W10 updates

      Not MS this time. That job is an appliance one. A little, unattended or very little maintenance appliance server.

    4. selina.davis

      Re: Scared Sh*tless with W10 updates

      you put a machine that people rely on in business on the fast ring? i.e. you signed that machine in to Microsoft's Windows Insider Program and are now complaining that you keep getting updates that break things?

      Are you really that surprised?

      Get it off the Fast Ring by signing out of the Insider Program - which I might add is not something you do by accident, its quite an involved process in the first place to enter the credentials to do this!!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Scared Sh*tless with W10 updates

        Just to clairfy, the PC in question is a consumer version, not a fast or slow ring, thats my computer I am refering to. I would not place any production PC on a ring and have realised it is being mis-read

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Facepalm

    Gartner once again says the bleeding obvious...

    ...and people pay for it, and worse, voluntarily listen to it.

    I greatly look forward to Gartner's view on:

    1. Where bears shit.

    2. What the pope is.

    3. Whether it's a long way to the top if you want to rock and roll.

    and so forth.

    El Reg: these people need their oxygen supply cutting off, not increasing.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    And in the real world...

    I have just completed an infrastructure migration for a small company

    The one banking apps instructions were written for NT4 and I had to beat it into submission on a 64vit os

    Their main financial lob runs on server 2000 (yes!) with db2 7.x (we luckily found the install media do this

    The other payroll app is written in foxpro, most of the time with this one you have to turn off oplocks & anything newer than smb1. For some reason this app is super popular where I live and I've struggled with it often.

    Extreme case maybe, but these are the realities. I think these app vendor might struggle with a 4mth cadence.

    1. energystar
      Coffee/keyboard

      Re: And in the real world...

      Why Why My Lord Punctuation signs stop working at my keyboard when I start mumbling grumbling at this $*!t. Why business logic is coded at such low level Why not fully documented Why is not virtualized etc etc

  23. Paul Smith

    Does anybody remember?

    Does anybody remember when small business's bought computers to help them with their business? What part of the sys admin and patch management that is required for Win10 is helping a small business to do business? In much the same way that DEC captured the medium enterprise market from IBM when IBM thought it was too small to count, I suspect that Microsoft has accidentally walked away from the SME market. I wonder who will fill it?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Does anybody remember?

      "I suspect that Microsoft has accidentally walked away from the SME market. "

      I think you're right, with the correction that the SME market wasn't owned by MS themselves, it got its TLC from the huge network of what were until recently known as Certified Microsoft Dependent Business Partners (and ISVs and what have you).

      The smarter ones will have seen the light and will be considering their various non-Microsoft options. And presumably Microsoft don't care. To Microsoft, "business partner" == "organ donor".

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Does anybody remember?

        But what happens when they discover that non-Microsoft is not an option because their critical software is Windows-only and trying to migrate or create a new version for another platform is too expensive? Meaning they're stuck?

        1. Doctor Syntax Silver badge

          Re: Does anybody remember?

          "But what happens when they discover that non-Microsoft is not an option because their critical software is Windows-only"

          What happens when they discover it's Windows $SPECIFIC_VERSION only? Where $SPECIFIC_VERSION is probably XP. Wine. VM. There are options.

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: Does anybody remember?

            Custom AND EXPENSIVE proprietary hardware involved. WINE-incompatible and NOT VM-friendly. Yet you're being pressured to upgrade for compliance reasons, but the only way to do so is to replace the custom hardware that goes into six or seven figures...

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    it's a long way to the shop if you want a chiko roll

    Windows 10 as a service.

    I have bad feeling about this...

  25. Simon Buttress

    Windows 10, Sisyphus Edition

    See title.

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows 10 will never be “finished”

    I think they should go to kickstarter and apply for funds there. It seems a fashionable business model these days: you make a working product (software, game), you sell it, make a neat profit, and then go to kickstarter to appeal for funds to develop a new product. Great model!

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Although the basic idea of "rolling" is good (keep all systems up-to-date, do not let one-off things dminate the whole infrastructure management by hanging on to the concept that you can have isolated systems), I have not seen any advertisements where the leaders of the IT are supposed to pre-empt issues at the design stage.

    Many IoT projects etc. will therefore remain on the order of "marketing wants these faetures, managemeent wants these features, users have complained about these featurres and OH can you use some kind of standard-modulees for security and whip something up". Followed by a couple of months later: "Oh some customers have complained that they can just change the URL-in the web-management interface and become admins. etc. etc.".

    Basically: If you define operation and development both as bleu-collar "production" work where any development work that wobbles can be solved by manual intervention by ops who canbe expected to have the levels of sytem-knowledge of the devs then oversight may recede more and more until the shit really hits the fan and someone actually has to accept responsibility.

    It will be interesting to see when the dev-world matures to the level where they function on top of systems that are kept operational by others.

  28. TVU Silver badge

    "Remix OS is the ****ing future."

    "ChromeOS maybe, as that's very secure. Android? You'd have to be a lunatic to run that as a desktop OS unless Google seriously up their security gamr.."

    Android is fine for play, less so for proper work. Google's Chrome OS is more practical in that respect but then there's the little matter of lots of data gathering (we know where Windows 10's bad habits were copied from).

    I'd be happier with just a standard Linux distribution for efficiency, data privacy and security. If you really like the look of Chrome OS then can even get a Linux distribution, Cub, that looks like Chrome OS but it's based on Ubuntu hence it's pretty secure and you don't get all the data harvesting (incidentally, that distribution's developers were leant on by Google's lawyers to change their name which was Chromixium).

  29. Nathan 13

    Most people

    Just want a desktop PC to work like XP and W7 does.

    Yes have touchscreen and tiles on tablets and phones.

    But a desktop PC is best operated with a mouse, and by installing your programs than run in windows accessed by either shortcuts or the start menu.

    If Microsoft cannot make that any more, then people who use desktops will look for the best alternative, which will be a trade of between ease of use, and quality of the experience.

    If Android desktop could be actually better in both the above areas than Mircosoft, then its a BOOM!!!

    1. quxinot

      Re: Most people

      > Most people

      >Just want a desktop PC to work like XP and W7 does.

      That's the part that's absolutely baffling. Microsoft could very easily rake cash in hand over fist and prevent their customers from developing a wandering eye....

      MAKE AN OS THAT WE WANT TO BUY. WE WILL PAY MONEY FOR IT.

      Stop with the "This is where you will go today" theme. Give us a choice of interfaces with some modularity: (Start menu: 2000, XP, fullscreen/8, or with stupid ads in it/10), + (Desktop interface, touch interface for large screens, touch for small screens, blind-user optimized, CLI only), + BYOBrowser [so removing IE actually DOES something, not least removing 90% of the security issues], etc.

      I would adore a copy of Windows 11 Rainbow Platinum Foil Edition that lets me totally remove crap I don't use (IE, Skype, Onedrive, etc etc), choose the interface that I want (aero-style, non-translucent, win2000 start menu), and makes patching easy because the update descriptions actually tell me what I need to know about their use and intents--mind, this would require some time before they regained trust in their honesty.

      What's more, I'd pay for it. Which should compare nicely against having a hard time with a product they can't seem to give away. Most users don't want "just works", they want "works the way I want it to". Before railing against that, remember the backlash at the 8 interface (which isn't bad, once you've installed classic shell).

      Microsoft could become a leader in innovation, simply by listening to their customers and providing solutions that solve the problems that we have with their product. You'd think this would be easy.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Most people

        With the greatest respect, you seem a little confused. You seem to think that you, as the end user, are Microsoft's customer, and that therefore what you want counts for something.

        End users are of little interest to MS in recent years. System builders have been of interest, because a handful of huge deals can make a huge difference to the results at MS. In the consumer market, Android and to a lesser extent Mac are changing that; consumers with a clue now know that unless they have particularly obscure requirements, Windows is no longer essential. So system builders too will have to divorce themselves from Windows if they want to survive in the consumer market.

        The end user is not the customer. Data about the end user is the product, it's what MS are selling (instead of selling Windows itself).

        Look again.

        1. energystar
          Windows

          Re: Most people

          Even Alphabet lose their "customers" if loosing their users... So, be nice to the users :)

          1. Charles 9 Silver badge

            Re: Most people

            But there are so many users out there that "One leaves, get another." Plus the one you lose may come crawling back once they find the alternatives (if any) are no better.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    CBB.......Cock & Ball Bondage!

    I'm not far off the mark, am i?

  31. ecofeco Silver badge

    Any justificaitons fanbois?

    Fuck Win 10. Just fuck it to death already.

  32. Ropewash
    Paris Hilton

    Question.

    So I just wondered what the plan for embedded Windows will be.

    Half the machines at our shop that run any OS at all are using WinXP. This is fine, it runs perfectly well and never sees the internet since it was never meant to and in most cases doesn't have a network card. Airgapped, because breaking these things costs a lot.

    So how's that going to work with Win10?

    Can it handle never being on a network?

    Are they willing to accept that these machines will never be online and will never see a single update in their entire working lifetime?

    Did Microsoft just abandon an entire market for the sake of telemetry and SaaS?

    I'll just mention the other half of those machines run a custom Linux. It has also never seen a network and really doesn't seem to care at all.

    1. energystar
      Gimp

      Re: Question.

      Nothing to prevent a useful "Robinson Crusoe" Intranet... Made some at my times. Try to use a [Service Pack] point of install. You will have to disable a lot of auto and notifications...

      Use a lot of adhesive and plastic covers to prevent every single open hole on your "trash" boat.

    2. energystar

      Re: Question.

      And services. Most of them can be safely disabled. Need some reading and testing.

    3. energystar

      Re: Question.

      You will have to plug at least once for license(s) approval.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Question.

        Sounds risky. That once is all they need...and about five seconds last I read. It takes longer than that to get the approval usually.

        1. energystar
          Mushroom

          Re: Question.

          Not even Android prevents you from using a never updated system. Risk is all yours, of course. Just require slackness and discipline.

    4. energystar

      Re: Question.

      On another [better] options, software exist that could bring the workstation to exactly the same Status it was at some point in the past. Through "image" management.

      Immutable objects ;)

      Production to be sent to external servers. Supplies to be brought from external servers.

      1. energystar
        Joke

        Re: Question.

        Or simply use optical media, for exchange... [It's not iPad, you know]

      2. energystar

        Re: Question.

        "Image management on boot" was formerly developed for "Cibercafés"

    5. energystar

      Re: Question.

      Microsoft "big updates" should be handled the same way :)

      1. Ropewash

        Re: Re: Question.

        That was lot of posts energystar.

        Just to clarify a bit, these "machines" aren't workstations. I don't care if the workstations are networked or even if they're Win10 with full telemetry. The machines in question are production equipment and they'll never be getting an upgrade till the day they are dismantled for scrap.

        I was just wondering how an embedded Win10 would cope with not being in contact with the mothership and therefore how fit it would be for the same task on machinery built today.

        Judging by your many responses I'm guessing it will be fine as long as the company producing it knows to de-couple it from it's online content.

        Hopefully so, because an update that invalidates a driver for a control board on a machine that's needed to actually make parts can bring misery to many people for many weeks as you sit and wait for the techs to fly in and try to sort it out.

        Lucky me these ancient things only have RS232 for comms.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Question.

          "The machines in question are production equipment and they'll never be getting an upgrade till the day they are dismantled for scrap."

          Not even if there's a bug that causes it to break, you don't have a contract with them, and it costs less (but still five or six figures) to replace the thing outright than to get it fixed?

  33. ben_myers

    Win 10 on a low-specced computer? Balderdash!

    "Windows 10 is happy on low-specced hardware so you can upgrade without also buying new boxen if you choose." Well, how low is low-specced? If Gartner can't be more specific, they should not be presenting and writing about the glories of Windows 10. Oops! Betcha Microsoft is pay Garter good money to do so.

    Microsoft has always touted that their latest greatest will run on some piece of hardware that is essentially unusable for real work, because it is so insufferably slow. The miracle is that Win 10 will run at all on the minimum. You would not want your worst enemy to use it, though.

    To refresh our memories, here is what Microsoft says is the minimum hardware needed to run Windows 10, direct from the Microsoft web site:

    Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster processor or SoC

    RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit

    Hard disk space: 16 GB for 32-bit OS 20 GB for 64-bit OS

    Graphics card: DirectX 9 or later with WDDM 1.0 driver

    Display: 800x600

    Network & audio: not specified.

    Pathetically slow!

    1. Roland6 Silver badge

      Re: Win 10 on a low-specced computer? Balderdash!

      Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster with support for PAE, NX, and SSE2

      Basically, any system that is capable of running Windows 8/8.1, which is not all systems capable of running Win7...

  34. Howard Hanek Bronze badge
    Headmaster

    Another 'Benefit' of Windows 10

    ...so the customers pay for all the testers MS layed off and they make Windows 10 more profitable for them in the future?

  35. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I don't understand why people think moving to Linux is something an enterprise can or will do.

    I work in the local arm of a global company, we have several thousand people working in our IT division alone. Many with ten's of years of experience, but all with Windows.

    Ship everything over to Linux, and how are you going to retrain all our IT staff, or get replacements for those who can't/won't learn Linux? It is really naive to think global enterprises can shift easily to another OS and product stack.

    The retraining alone would cost billions.

    1. Richard Plinston Silver badge

      > how are you going to retrain all our IT staff,

      The IT staff have to be retrained for every new version of Windows and Windows Server.

      Many enterprises already run some Linux servers even if all their desktops are Windows (and the phones are Android or iPhone).

    2. Roland6 Silver badge

      I don't understand why people think moving to Linux is something an enterprise can or will do.

      Well back in the 80's and even early 90's, who would of thought that global enterprises with thousands of IT people would move off reputable enterprise computer vendors platforms to commodity hardware and Windows...

      Likewise with networking, the battle between proprietary networking and open standards networking may have been rumbling on for some years, as open protocols developed, but once they were good enough (in the form of TCP/IP) and at the right price (typically included for free in the Unix OS bundle), the battle for the enterprise was largely over in a few short years.

      If MS cause businesses a big enough headache, they will drop Windows as quickly as they dropped whatever systems they were using prior to switching to Windows.

      Currently, about the only thing in MS's favour is the lack of a real alternative to Windows. However, in saying that, I suggest the alternatives, such as Linux and LibreOffice, are more mature and enterprise ready than Windows and Office were in the mid 90's. So we are heading into interesting times...

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        "Currently, about the only thing in MS's favour is the lack of a real alternative to Windows. However, in saying that, I suggest the alternatives, such as Linux and LibreOffice, are more mature and enterprise ready than Windows and Office were in the mid 90's. So we are heading into interesting times..."

        But of course, the real holdup will be the custom-made irreplaceable piece of custom backend software that's critical to your everyday operation (as in it breaks and you can basically kiss your business goodbye), the developer no longer exists, and any replacement is going to be a killer for your bottom line. Oh, and it doesn't play nice in virtualization (usually due to esoteric code or proprietary hardware). IOW, you're stuck with it. Pray it doesn't break.

  36. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

    Just tried to change my "active hours" so Windows 10 won't try to reboot when I don't want it to.

    It's not possible to specify more than 10 active hours.

    So from 8am to 8pm isn't a possibillity, or from 8am to 1am for that matter.

    So very generous of MS to allow a whole 10 hours every day when they don't threaten to reboot for you.

    MS clearly are living some fantasy where they are the benevolent dictator.

    The North Korea of computing.

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