back to article Microsoft programming chief to devs: Tell us where Windows hurt you

"We're going to reinvigorate Windows desktop development," claimed Julia Liuson, Microsoft's corporate VP responsible for developer tools and programming languages. This is one of five missions on her mind, she told The Reg, another is "Visual Studio Live Share going public. We think that will transform how teams interact and …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

    .NET and all the cruft built on it.

    Let us developing using the native OS APIs, thank you, Far better responsive applications, faster to start, faster to work with, far more powerful. You copied Java, and you got a copy of Java, with all its defects. There's a reason why Java on the desktop went almost nowhere - actually only IDEs are common Java desktop applications.

    1. HmmmYes Silver badge

      Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

      No, they did a bad copy of Java. And got an even worse product.

      How about an easy way, consisent to embed and probe versions numbers of everything present on a machine?

      Why the fuck does everything have to be bloated. Went ti update powershell - a fucking command shell. 500M download.

      1. Alan Bourke

        Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

        > Went ti update powershell - a fucking command shell. 500M download.

        Well then it updated a load more than PowerShell. PowerShell 4 is part of the Windows Management Framework download, and that's under 50MB even with everything included.

        1. HmmmYes Silver badge

          Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

          Version 6 now... keep up at the back.

      2. Concrete Gannet

        Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

        "How about an easy way, consistent to embed and probe versions numbers of everything present on a machine?"

        There is such a thing. You can use a Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) query to discover what has been installed. If some piece of software isn't found by that, the vendor is not following Microsoft's guidelines and it's more their fault than Microsoft's.

        This thread might be useful: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/673233/wmi-installed-query-different-from-add-remove-programs-list

    2. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

      " actually only IDEs are common Java desktop applications."

      And I really wish they weren't. Java applications, even the "good" ones, simply suck in comparison to native applications.

    3. Daniel von Asmuth

      Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

      Let's start with the funky memory models of PC-DOS (and 16-bit Windows). Then we mention the TSR applications of DOS and the 'cooperative multi-tasking' of 16-bit Windows. Visual Basic gets an unhonorary mention, together with GUIs in general. Did you notice that Windows is so bad they keep changing the GUI with every release?

      It's not that 640 KB was a whole lof of RAM, Microsoft abused it to turn MS-DOS into a bloated feature-overflowing monster. ...and that was before they created all those other buggy incompatible documented APIs, which keep you searching for some documentation. ...where old source code needs updating for every new version. Did we mention that you cannot find the OS sources anywhere, let alone fix them? That you cannot even peruse www.microsoft.com with their own Internet Explorer 2.0 (and maybe not even version 6.0).

      Windows is expensive, slow, bloated and insecure, but more importantly it lacks stability - the infamous Blue Screen Of Death. Finally, only a handful of elite companies are eligible for technical support, that the rest of us cannot afford.

    4. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Thumb Up

      Re: "We want to ask developers, what is your pain point"

      "Let us develop using the native OS APIs, thank you"

      Welcome Aboard! (see icon)

      Now, admittedly I'd like to see an MFC-like cross-platform toolkit, where I could develop for this toolkit and easily compile/run on X11, OSX, or Windows, with the SAME SOURCE.

      Oh, wait, there *IS* one! But yeah, it needs a bit more support with respect to tools, etc. from what I've seen.

      MS: if you can "get on board" with what wxWidgets does, maybe devs will like you more? Just STOP IT with the C-pound-only, ".Not"-only, UWP-only, "spinning compass" directionless NONSENSE. Stick with one thing, make it better, make it cross-platform (and NO slurpware/adware built-in).

  2. HmmmYes Silver badge

    Oh thats easy.

    A simple, scalable built tool.

    VS is OK for one person building one thing.

    Not visual studio - I need to build moe than one applictiion - several libraries and 20 odd applications.

    nmake is shit. Does not work with powershell.

    msbuild is XML junk. And shit.

    1. Diogenes Silver badge

      I like to pull wings off butterflies /sarc

      VS is OK for one person building one thing.

      I say amen unto you brother. Try it in a school environment where more than 1 kid uses a computer (Androids Studio sucks majorly in this area as well - disclaimer I haven't tried any of the v3 stuff)

      Heading refers to torturing students with industry leading software :-)

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whats the pain points?

    Changing their minds every few years?

    I thought PWA's were their thing this week?

    1. Shadow Systems Silver badge

      Re: Whats the pain points?

      This. A trillion times this.

      If you try to write a program for Windows' currently touted pseudo-long-term framework, you'll be fekkin' lucky if they don't kill support for it before you've even finished debuggin' the damned thing.

      I'm not even a programmer & I've lost count of the number of times MS has changed their minds in mid breath, radically changed course, & left folks in the lurch.

      MS claims it wants to ensure backwards compatability, but the 32bit world is still the largest pool to fish from & Win10 is supposed to be dropping support for it. Universal? Only if you're running Win10; it doesn't work on Win7 & only runs on Win8 if you've allowed it to become infested with Win10 cancer.

      Dear MS, you want the pain points? Sit down, shut up, & be prepared to listen for a few DECADES worth of examples of MS fucking over the folks that try to write for Windows. Take notes. Take LOTS of notes.

      1. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: Whats the pain points?

        >Take notes. Take LOTS of notes.

        Then commit to getting a knowledgeable developer to respond to each and every point made.

      2. Someone Else Silver badge

        Re: Whats the pain points?

        Take notes. Take LOTS of notes.

        They took Notes...and fucked it up good. Multiple times. Remember the old saying (paraphrasing): "Windows ain't done until Notes doesn't work" (It's been a long time, and I'm tired....)

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Mushroom

      Re: Whats the pain points?

      "Changing their minds every few years?"

      More like "Changing their minds every few WEEKS". It's impossible to navigate while the compass is spinning. It's even worse when the compass leads us OVER THE CLIFF!

      pain points: ".Not", C-pound, MFC/runtime "shared lib" by default, ".Not" dependency by default, manifests required in EXE's now, "code signage" requirements for drivers [aka TOLLBOOTH], UWP, "the Store", 2D FLATSO UI, *spyware*, *adware*, "change for the sake of change", FORCED UPDATES, "online only" MSDN documentation, Win 7 (effectively) not *purchasable* any more, subscription models for office [and we know its coming, THE OPERATING SYSTEM], and...

      CUSTOMERS TREATED LIKE MOOKS / MINIONS / MASSES / EXPLOITABLES!!!

      Micro-shaft - are you PAYING ATTENTION? Past experience suggests NO. (and you wonder WHY you don't know what the customer wants any more!)

  4. Woza

    Pain points, you say?

    It's been a while since I tried, but do they support C99 yet - particularly designated initialisers? It's only been 19 years.

    1. Hjulenissen

      Re: Pain points, you say?

      No, they are still at C89.

      Causes me endless pain in crossplatform code.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Pain points, you say?

        Causes me endless pain in crossplatform code.

        Use a better IDE+Compiler, like the rest of us.

    2. Ken Hagan Gold badge

      Re: Pain points, you say?

      Their official position is that they don't offer a C compiler, for any version of the language. If your C code happens to go through their C++ compiler, that's a bonus.

      1. boltar Silver badge

        Re: Pain points, you say?

        "If your C code happens to go through their C++ compiler, that's a bonus."

        If your C++ code goes through their C++ compiler thats a bonus too. Its hardly up to date wrt standards.

        Its times like this I'm glad I stuck with unix development. gcc, vim, gdb, strace and make - they just work and I can get on with developing applications, not learn a new fucking IDE or API every year to do the same thing as I could do with the old one that some PHB decided to deprecate or some goofy interface "designer" thought he would "improve" by randomly shuffling everything around and renaming stuff.

  5. JuJuBalt

    They've been asleep for 6 years lol.

  6. }{amis}{ Silver badge
    Flame

    Noooooooooooooooooooooo.......

    Not more XMAL kill it with fire and give me something that doesn't take 4 hours to make small formatting changes in.

    Seriously I maintain 2 .net apps one is an awful automated port of an old vb6 app and the over is a WPF app with a modern DI framework.

    Even with the spaghetti-code mess that is the super legacy vb code, I still get stuff done faster in there as I don't have to faff around with the shoddy XMAL language and its lack of documentation.

    1. tiggity Silver badge

      Re: Noooooooooooooooooooooo.......

      @ }{amis}{

      Indeed, that is why (Despite MS wanting to kill it) WinForms lives on.

      Its fast to change things - and with the ludicrous timescales pointy headed bosses demand in software, the quick to market tools are popular.

      I have some superbly elegant MVVM pattern apps - however it always takes me ages to do even minor changes (even thoooough its my own code) compared to legacy quick 'n' dirty winforms code

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Noooooooooooooooooooooo.......

        You might want to try GTK#.

  7. Jemma Silver badge

    Tell us...

    On this user experience person, with this claw hammer, where Windows hurt you...

    I'm honestly not sure whether that woman's biological age or her IQ is the smaller figure - but if that's all they can find as a VP and potential inspiration for people to buy/trust MS products... Then it's game over man..

    She looks like a 13 year old in a business suit. I'm reminded of the memorable cover of "fire" by the Paedofinder General..

    "She's 31, works in accounts; She looks like 12 and that's what counts!"

    1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

      Re: Tell us...

      Misogynistic bollocks.

      She will be in her 30s at the very least, and her IQ will be at least 70 points above yours.

      1. HmmmYes Silver badge

        Re: Tell us...

        Well ... if either of you bothered to google her, you would have found her wikipedia entry:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julia_Liuson

        which must have been written by her. I really hope MS dont have people who write wikipedia entries for all their senior staff ...

        Anyhow, youll see shes 48 and has worked at MS since she graduated in 91.

        So, in answer to her question - 'Where have we fucked up?'

        My response would be - 'You tell me. Youve worked there long enough''

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          You tell me. Youve worked there long enough

          Exactly!

          If they haven't noticed our "pain points" by now, then there's no chance of any positive changes.

          Now that I've moved away from Windows, my pain points with development no longer exist.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Tell us...

          I really hope MS dont have people who write wikipedia entries for all their senior staff

          Of course they do!

          And Microsoft are renowned for astroturfing, too.

      2. Jemma Silver badge

        Re: Tell us...

        Possibly but I doubt it, mines somewhere between 135 and 150 depending on the tests used, like most people I'm better in some areas than others. And she works for Microsoft in senior PHB territory.. The only company I'd refuse to work for faster would be BMW or possibly BT. I've worked in the NHS and I'd go back there before I'd take employment with MS.

        Let me put it this way - she doesn't inspire me with confidence - still neither does anything that MS does any more - they've stumbled from disaster to disaster for years, mobile they make a door nail look positively energetic, and for most of their products you can either get a better alternative or a free alternative which may well be better.

        1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

          Re: Tell us...

          "mines somewhere between 135 and 150"

          I think you mean that it measured that some 20+ years, and countless pints, ago.

        2. JohnFen Silver badge

          Re: Tell us...

          "mines somewhere between 135 and 150"

          First, I don't believe you. 135-150 is too enormous of a range to make sense. But rather than call you a liar, I'll just say that I have very serious doubt about the legitimacy of the tests that you took.

          Second, IQ scores mean very little in terms of measuring overall intelligence.

        3. ZanzibarRastapopulous

          Re: Tell us...

          > "...mines somewhere between 135 and 150 "

          It's really not coming across like that.

        4. bombastic bob Silver badge

          Re: Tell us...

          IQ of 135 to 150 would be average in the IT world. nothing to brag about, really.

          yes, it is an amazing realization to consider that the people you normally deal with at work, versus "the rest of the population", have that much of a gap in IQ. "Average IQ" is 100. That means there are as many people BELOW 100 as there are above it. Fortunately I don't have to deal with people that have "below 100" IQ very often [I think most of them have gummint jobs].

          I wonder what 'median IQ' would be, though... that might say a LOT.

      3. a_yank_lurker Silver badge

        Re: Tell us...

        Still less than 0.

    2. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Tell us...

      Ad hominem attacks do nothing but weaken any legitimate criticisms or disagreements that you may have.

    3. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
      Joke

      Re: Tell us...

      She looks like a 13 year old in a business suit.

      She could be a 13yr old in a business suit. It's not just Policemen who look younger these days.

      A Doogie Howser of Software Development

    4. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  8. DaveH77

    Target OS

    UWP "islands" are cool and all that but are of no use to me or my customers.

    I needs to be able to ship to Win7 and Win8 and UWP islands will still (I believe) require Win10...

  9. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Windows

    No

    "We believe every developer will become an AI developer. You don't need to learn new programming languages."

    Most developers can't even do a single programming language nor find their own arse in the bright light of faddish, incidental, consultancy-enabling complexity. What should they do with AI?

    Pain Point #1: Get rid of all the Windows in the enterprise and replace with manageable, understandable, staid Unix machinery. The decision makers of the battling Unix Consortia of the early 90s should get the shark tank treatment for that.

    Pain Point #2: Uncloud all applications.

    Pain Point #3: XFCE-level of GUI should be enough for everyone.

    1. revenant Silver badge
      Terminator

      Re: No

      "Most developers can't ... find their own arse... What should they do with AI?"

      Let it help them, teach them, and at the same time - learn from them...

      Eventually they will find that although they need it, it won't need them.

      Game over for such developers then.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: No

        So you don't know anything about the state of AI then?

  10. minnsey231

    Well I'm an optimist

    Not much love on the comments today, but as someone using .NET, WPF and Visual Studio every day I'm pretty optimistic about the future for .NET Core/Standard.

    Its been a bumpy couple of years as they've built it all out fast in public (kudos for that) but we seem to be reaching a tipping point and the stability, interoperability, project structure etc all seems to be settling down.

    If nothing else Xamarin.Forms will provide a cross platform GUI very soon including, UWP, WPF, macOS, Tizen and Visual Studio is still the best IDE out there.

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      Re: Well I'm an optimist

      "Visual Studio is still the best IDE out there."

      I use a number of different IDEs (and non-integrated development environments) on a daily basis, and I can honestly say that Visual Studio is the most painful of them all. It's the only one that I curse at.

      1. Def Silver badge

        Re: Well I'm an optimist

        You should try xcode and android studio sometime. Then you'll understand pain and learn how to curse like a pro.

      2. Fruit and Nutcase Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: Well I'm an optimist

        @JohnFen

        "Visual Studio is still the best IDE out there."

        Microsoft's Programmer's WorkBench - from the pre-feature bloat days - after that I've struggled to get to grips with every version of VS - admittedly I don't need to use it regularly, and that means I try to muddle along without RTFM

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge
          Devil

          Re: Well I'm an optimist

          PWB and Visual Studio

          I remember PWB. I kinda liked it. I also liked VS 98, where you could EDIT A DIALOG BOX OR USE THE CLASS WIZARD WITHOUT EVER TOUCHING THE MOUSE!

          (I'd love to have a LINUX version of PWB, actually! using CURSES!)

          Regarding Visual Studio: Once it went to "lift hand from keyboard, mousie, clickie, mousie, clickie, find home row again, type, lift hand from keyboard, rinse/repeat" I stopped LIKING it. when it went to 2D FLATSO (2013 I think) I *STARTED* *HATING* *IT*!!!

          2010 is the LAST visual studio I'll evar use... and I rarely use it!

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Meh

      Re: Well I'm an optimist

      "Not much love on the comments today, but as someone using .NET, WPF and Visual Studio every day I'm pretty optimistic about the future for .NET Core/Standard."

      no bias then. (how is that coolaid aftertaste?)

  11. Matt Bucknall
    Mushroom

    Desktop development

    .NET sucks, QT sucks, GTK+ sucks, Java Swing/FX sucks... it all sucks! All these frameworks are either a bloody mess or so outdated, they make HTML5 look like the best option for developing desktop applications... I can't even tell if that is good or bad, I'm so disillusioned with it all.

    In any case, it is beyond me why anyone would take the time to get their heads around any new development framework MS comes up with... think of all the man hours wasted getting up to speed with Windows phone app development... what a worthwhile effort that was!

  12. RPF

    I think this could be a loooooooong thread!

  13. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
    Holmes

    Where does it hurt?

    Everywhere so I decided, 'To hell with this game of soldiers' and gave up developing for Windows.

    Regained my sanity after a few months..

  14. clocKwize

    Such hate. I haven't developed for windows in years but I have read with interest all the stuff about .NET core and things - all moving in a good direction, seems positive.

    To say that .NET is a shit copy of Java is a bit harsh..

    Saying everything should be developed natively is far too optimistic in this day when everyone wants the same app on their PC (windows), their laptop (mac), their phone (android) and their TV (WebOS or whatever). No company wants to develop the same app in different ways many times and support them all individually. Attempts at cross platform frameworks are not perfect by any means, but they're better than the alternative.

    1. JohnFen Silver badge

      "Attempts at cross platform frameworks are not perfect by any means, but they're better than the alternative."

      They're better than the alternative from the point of view of production costs. They're worse than the alternative from pretty much every other point of view.

    2. Adam 1 Silver badge

      > To say that .NET is a shit copy of Java is a bit harsh..

      More than a bit harsh. Can we interest you in a mutable datetime class? Whoever thought that was a good idea, I'll have whatever they were smoking.

      XAML is a brilliant idea terribly executed. Over engineered to the point where the winforms folk scratch their head as to why it should take an hour to write the code to hide an element based on an enum with some value and'd with some other bool property. Your triggers end up just as long as war and peace, can't be easily unit tested, resulting in people (ab)using their viewmodels and having to add a gazillion notify property change events, or (ab)using multivalueconverter because the expression is much simpler and you can at least write test cases on the converter. If it transcompiled to html5 then it would be very strong, but it doesn't open up any web options, unless you count silverlight or xbap (er, just no)

      But back to my point, it's a bit stupid to claim it as a poor copy. It was able to avoid some of the more stupid architectural traps Java found itself in and end up with things like lambdas much earlier. The async await stuff is also excellent.

    3. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Trollface

      "To say that .NET is a shit copy of Java is a bit harsh WAY TOO KIND"

      Fixed. you're welcome.

  15. johnnyblaze

    bull

    Here we go again then! MS are trying to co-erce developers once again to start actually writing stuff for Windows, rather than where the action actually is - Android and iOS. I'm sure Nadella has preached that 'we want you to love Windows again' mantra many times before. What they just don't understand is that Windows is far from #1 in the world now. People who use it mainly just sit in a browser, or write letters. They don't need all the AI crap, or features MS keep shovelling in, but they don't actually need Windows to run a browser, and when they realise that, Windows will slide very quickly into a death spiral.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. disgruntled yank Silver badge

      Re: bull

      Coerce?

      My employer does not precisely "coerce" me to write stuff for Windows, but my job description includes tending to various things that do. Microsoft's hand in the coercion came long ago when it sold us Office.

      Windows may be far from #1 in the world now. But is the work going away? Maybe so, but I doubt it.

      As for Android and iOS, they are well enough as instruments of voluntary surveillance. (It's a lot easier to walk with a phone in your pocket than it is with an ankle monitor.) But have you recently explained to an accounting department or budget office why it should drop Excel for Google Sheets?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Tell us where Windows hurt you

    Many years ago assigning IRQs.

    1. Douchus McBagg

      Re: Tell us where Windows hurt you

      i actually twitched involuntarily when i read that

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Tell us where Windows hurt you

        I could go further and say "sound card drivers".

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Thumb Up

          Re: Tell us where Windows hurt you

          Please do.

          and latency

          and oh bother everything

          While Microsoft have been over-designing for Tablets they have ignored Live the universe and Everything

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Happy

      Re: Tell us where Windows hurt you

      Hmm do I want EPP, ECP or EPP + ECP

      Tough call...let me see where the confict is (as above Sound card) fix each of those then after playing whack-a-mole for a few hours, then I'll finally know.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Tell us where Windows hurt you

        few hours?

        Not sure how fast your cd rom was at installing...

      2. jelabarre59 Silver badge

        Re: Tell us where Windows hurt you

        Hmm do I want EPP, ECP or EPP + ECP

        Tough call...let me see where the confict is (as above Sound card) fix each of those then after playing whack-a-mole for a few hours, then I'll finally know.

        That's not necessarily or entirely Microsoft's fault. IBM should have been smart rather than greedy when they developed Microchannel Architecture. They should have handed it off to an independent industry organization, made sure the initial licensing was cheap, and made their money off chipsets/hardware and consulting services for companies implementing the spec. We'd be on something like MCA v4 now, driver code imbedded in EPROM/flash memory on the expansion cards and system boards, auto-configuration of devices, level-triggeed interrupts, etc. You know, the stuff that took another 10 years or more to finally show up (and some stuff that never has).

  17. Andy Mac
    Windows

    How has Windows hurt you?

    Oh dear, let me count the ways...

  18. mr_belowski

    Trying to run anything related to Docker in Windows is a monumental pain in the backside, farting about with HyperV or VBox. Add a batshit crazy corporate AV solution, lock down the box so I can't access loads of ports and mix in a crappy VPN that nukes traffic on the 192.168 IP ranges and it's enough to make you quit and find another gig. Why would anyone doing any container based development go anywhere near Windows?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Wow I just thought it was me....

      let me guess, Firewall issue trying to share a drive?

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "Show me on the doll where SatNad had touched you, child."

    Did he touch or click you? Or did he swipe and pinch you?

  20. skalamanga

    Start at the basics, stop forcing reboots to install updates and allow driver pinning

    1. jelabarre59 Silver badge

      Start at the basics, stop forcing reboots to install updates and allow driver pinning

      You'd think their updater would be smart enough to parse through all impending updates, and stack them in such a way that everything that could possibly be loaded before it absolutely HAS to do a reboot could be done all in one batch. Rather than "oh we've updated file xxxx\yyyy.zz, we have to reboot. Oh look, here's another update that needs to change xxxx\yyyy.zz. Lets write it again and reboot again".

  21. Bryan Hall
    FAIL

    Silverlight

    The entire software world is not about services and web apps! And not every app can even connect to the internet. There are heavy-duty apps for things like CAD and GIS that need the grunt, memory, and draw speeds that only a local, non webby apps can provide. In addition, these also hit multiple sources (especially for GIS) to render the current view, something that the cross site vulnerability prohibits in a browser. Plus - multi window, multi screen.

    We have (still) a Java Webstart desktop application for managing world-wide telecom plants. When silverlight became a viable option, we started to write code for that to replace the JWS application. Then MS killed silverlight and left us no other better MS solution.

    So why don't we trust MS? That's why - wasted effort.

    1. Shadow Systems Silver badge

      Re: Silverlight

      Wasted efforts indeed. As I said before I'm not a programmer, but in many of my jobs I've had to work with them in order to write documentation for the programs they were attempting to create.

      Programmer takes 6 months to create it, debug it, & polish it enough to release to the public; I take another month to polish up the docs I've been writing about it the entire time; we present a product that's ready to release... Only to have MS yank the rug out from under the programmer & render their work as utterly pointless.

      "Now what? If we release it then we have to support it & MS just made it unprofitable to do so. Hey Boss, do we ship it or shitcan it?"

      *Cue the sounds of a flushing toilet*

      Ok, there's a year's worth of worker hours just wasted. Next step try to recreate the program in whatever MS claims will be their next long term solution.

      Lather, rinse, repeat.

      Eventually the bean counters get pissed off that the programmers "never seem to release anything" (because of the MS rug yanking) & demand "agile" crap. All that does is make the failures happen faster.

      So tell me again please, what's the point of developing for Windows when Android is a more stable platform?

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Silverlight

      Microsoft seems to be suffering from a curious case of attention deficit syndrome... all of its much hyped projects tend to not last very long. Microsoft will jump ship to the next big thing, abandoning those who had invested money, time and emotions on that ditched product.

  22. MacroRodent Silver badge

    Reinvention

    Packaging an application as a single executable? Static linking reinvented! Actually makes a good deal of sense if it ultimately runs in a container providing a microservice.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Reinvention

      Packaging an application as a single executable? Static linking reinvented! Actually makes a good deal of sense if it ultimately runs in a container providing a microservice.

      There are other cases too, when you really really really don't want someone changing the version of a DLL on you. And if your .Net application uses 10+ DLLs, maybe combining them is best for you.

      one word - "ilmerge"

  23. JonDoe99

    Code Signing

    Windows used to be the easiest and cheapest platform for independent software developers wanting to self-publish, but it's now one of the worst. If you're not a limited company, it's very hard and extremely expensive to get a code-signing certificate, and without one, Windows throws up such alarmingly over-the-top warning messages that most casual users are left convinced that your software must be malware.

    In reality, certificates don't actually prove that software is safe at all, but just who the publisher is. If I was morally-deficient enough to stuff my software full of lovely money-earning spyware, I wouldn't have any trouble at all in getting a certificate.

    If Microsoft truly wants to become more developer-friendly, why not allow developers to self-certify their releases without having to go through an expensive certificate-seller. (eg. have Windows compare a file's certificate with a public key in the root of your website and display the web address to the end user - it would certainly be more meaningful than the personal name my certificates currently display).

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Code Signing

      have Windows compare a file's certificate with a public key in the root of your website and display the web address to the end user

      There is technically no difference between the two certificates, apart from a flag saying "this certificate is for signing code".

      It's just a $100 tick-box.

      1. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

        Re: Code Signing

        "have Windows compare a file's certificate with a public key in the root of your website and display the web address to the end user"

        But this will reveal the actual author of the application to the end user. And make it more difficult to treat your product and your company as tradable commodities suiting Microsoft's whims.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Thumb Down

      Re: Code Signing

      (topic) is a CANCEROUS TOLLBOOTH that implies REVOCATION.

      NO. Just No. [yet, for 64-bit drivers in 7, and everything later on, this is "the standard" now]

      This puts a HUGE BURDEN on open source developers being able to deploy things *like* "soft drivers". Let's say alternative compressed and/or encrypted file systems, for one. Let's say "soft devices" for another [emulating a device through software, like MIDI loopback or CDROM 'file image']. Let's say "special driver for your USB IOT thingy that uses some of the publically available vendor/hardware IDs that can identify themselves by name".

      All of this is *OPPRESSED* by the use of CODE SIGNAGE REQUIREMENTS where code must be SIGNED to be used! how can you *REALLY* comply with the GPL with this kind of requirement, as another example?

      besides, it's possible to get around the "requirement" if you can get end-users to shut it off (using a non-obvious but well documented procedure). Then it becomes POINTLESS to even HAVE it in the FIRST place, except for Micro-shaft to SCRAPE REVENUE for every "signage" [yes, win-10-nic drivers NOW have to be signed by MICRO-SHAFT].

      Code signage is like a broken condom, a FALSE SENSE OF SECURITY while one is getting SCREWED!

  24. Anonymous Bullard

    In other words: "It's been at least a year since we've made you all re-learn, our current shiny-shiny isn't as shiny, here's the next churn".

    Anyway, now that I can develop C# in Jetbrains Rider on Linux, the majority of my pain points have been quashed by another company. At a fraction of the price, too.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Right now, we've heard a bit of noise. That's why we haven't done anything

    So, you'll only improve things when we stop telling you how shit it is?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Microsoft need to ask ?

    The Ass, bollocks and wallet.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    I think Microsoft is doing a brilliant job...

    ...just not for their customers.

    Paris, because she's the only person to have ruined more tools than Microsoft.

  28. Doctor Evil

    MS reps in general

    Why do all MS senior reps come off sounding the same? They all speak in broken sentence fragments with tenses that don't agree with one another, half-finished thoughts left hanging, jargon and acronyms everywhere, and not a coherent thought in there. Not one of them seems to have a consistent, cohesive train of thought. Is is just me, or is this why they always come off all over-hyped and "oh, I'm sure we have a solution for you somewhere in our bag of tricks; let me just rummage around and pull out a few vaguely-related concepts and half-baked notions for you and then you can spend the time to figure out whether or not they'll actually do the job"?

    Honestly, I read what these people have to say and am left in no doubt whatsoever as to how they made their way up the corporate ladder. If only Microsoft hired more for development acumen than for an ability to spout catchphrases ...

    1. }{amis}{ Silver badge
      Go

      Re: MS reps in general

      Like al wishy-washy departments they have a style guide on how to talk b#%*$'s in the company style!

  29. Joe Cooper

    “We want to ask developers … Give us examples of what you are trying to do.”

    I’m trying to figure out which framework I’m to build an app with so it’s not deprecated by the time the product is released.

    I’m trying to figure out how to use the APIs you got when the documentation is spotty and google can’t distinguish the myriad of nearly identical but incompatible Microsoft frameworks.

    These “technologies” were stable by the 1980s. We don’t need them refactored every other year.

    1. Dagg
      Windows

      “We want to ask developers … Give us examples of what you are trying to do.”

      Some of us just make money as a jobbing MFC VC++ developer.

      Keep supporting MFC and the legacy tools sets and wizards as not all of us have the chance to work on bleeding edge you beaut projects. You broke the MFC Wizard in 2017.

      Hey it might not be sexy but it pays the bills....

      1. bombastic bob Silver badge
        Devil

        MFC applications, when you clean out all of the external dependency cruft, are pretty good. Static link them and you'll be fine. 'shared runtime' and 'shared MFC' DLLs are *HIGHLY* overrated, and might be a cause of a 'midnight phone call' due to some CRAPWARE that replaced them with buggy versions.

        and MFC with C++ is *SUPERIOR* in *ALL* ways to C-Pound with bass-ackwards ".Not"

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Tell us where Windows hurt you

    Windows 10 sucks. Office 2016 sucks.

    Revert back to Windows 7 and Office 2010. No data slurping. No forced updates. Just small optional updates that "just works"(tm) and a nice "glass" UI theme aka Window 7 (minus some bad updates).

    I want full control over my PC/notebook. Full stop. So Win10 / Office16 is a show stopper, not gonna happen. (Anyway, Win7 is so nice, and running circles on 2018 PC & notebook hardware, keep your newer buggy crap)

  31. JLV Silver badge
    Meh

    how about something simple.

    Let's say I have a basic, single-user, paid-for, license for Windows 10. Pro, to make my point clearer.

    How about I can actually launch a VM using the same license on the guest as on the host? Not having to buy another license, or wondering what I'm doing to contravene MS's arcane licensing restrictions.

    Use case is development and security while browsing. Is that really so much to ask for? Mac's OK with that, as long as you're on their hardware. Linux is obviously ok, what's lagging @ Redmond?

    I don't envy her job, going out and asking power users, admins and developers where Windows and MS has failed. The list is long and I agree with most of the points made by other posters, topmost the lack of commitment to their own tech stacks. Her blurb about everyone becoming an AI dev and your IDE making suggestions doesn't make me think that she's really cut out to fix anything however. This is cosmetic, fluffy, flavor of the week talk, not indicative that MS is really able to understand where they've been failing and fixing it.

    BTW, @Jemma - you're an ass for the attack on her appearance.

  32. Howard Hanek Bronze badge
    Happy

    Mommy Is 'Concerned'

    Mommy to Johnny and Jane...."I'm sorry I backed up over you both with the car.....tell me where it hurts".

  33. Gene Cash Silver badge

    "We think that is highly differentiated"

    Tells me all I need to know. Put on my track shoes and keep running.

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    DotNet sucks and UWP sucks -> WinAPI rules

    Windows used to be a great platform in the 1990s. Visual Studio 6 for C++ and Visual Basic 6 from 1998 - wonderful. Then the illfated DotNet vision fart of Bill Gate started in 1999, and finally released after many delays in 2003 as DotNet 1.1 and C# 1. And now with your DotNet Core 1, 2 and 3 and DotNet Framework 4.x legacy, and Silverlight, and WinForms and WPF and XAML and WinPhone 7, 8, 8.1 and 10 and all incompatible legacy APIs alltogether. And WinRT and UWP, incompatible between Win8.x and 10.

    How about going back to WinAPI. You know, back in 1994 you succeeded upgrading the aging Win16API to Win32API. And since 1998, WinAPI basically stayed the same. EU fined you millions for not publishing documentation the proprietary API extension that were used by MS apps in XP and Vista. WinAPI stayed the same. WinAPI is used by 99.99% of all Windows applications. Care about WinAPI and scrap all the other legacy APIs. And revert back to Win7, and scrap all the UWP and MS Store crap.

  35. martinusher Silver badge

    Its pretty useless for a lot of jobs

    Some years back I built some scripts in TCL to run tests on product firmware. This was a 'good thing', so much so that the company hired someone to do this full time. It was a Microsoft centric shop so the management set about doing this work properly, tasking this person to write (and re-write) this in C#. The result was useless because for the most part there was no library support for the interfaces that the product used -- the programmer was stuck with not writing code that was needed but writing code that he was able to write. (You just give our progress reports that omit this detail -- you can do a whole lot of productive work without producing anything.)

    Fast forward a year or two and this fellow left. His replacement, someone that was hired apparently for their TCL expertise, was tasked to do all this work in another Microsoft friendly language, a version of Python ("Iron") that was played the .NET tune. A couple of years later things are puttering along but the person still isn't capable of doing the low level interfaces needed for in depth testing. (But they're productive....).

    Playing to Microsoft's development environment is a disaster. Unless you're doing Office type stuff. I'm retired so I don't have to put up with this crap any more -- I'll do a bit of embedded, I'll use whatever platforms work, and I'll just let the whole MSFT bandwaggon roll off to wherever its going without me.

  36. martinusher Silver badge

    ....and another thing

    ....all the 'serious' work that I do that's on a Windows desktop because of 'corporate IT policy' runs under Cygwin. That includes IDEs, build systems and compilers, FPGA generation and so on. The only native Windows application that gets run by (embedded) developers is Outlook.

    There is MSFT applications development. It takes ages to get anything done and the result just keeps getting more and more bloated. (Its obviously 'feature rich' but I can't find any new ones.)

  37. This post has been deleted by its author

  38. BongoJoe

    Visual Studio 6

    Go and find the original VS 6 code.

    Add in a DVD worth of proper documentation unlike what's on the MSDN part of your site which shows snippets of code that's untyped (VB)

    And REMOVE that blasted SourceSafe which makes the Source repository very unSafe.

    And update the installation part of the Visual Studio so that one doesn't need to make a zero byte MSJAVA.DLL file to get the thing working.

    You know, I paid good money for Visual Studio 6 and, to me, it's worth a lot more than the current .Net fiasco. If I want to knock up, or edit, a form layout in VB6 it takes seconds. With .Net it can take upto five minutes to get the screen to show the form.

    I would love VS6 to be updated with a pure C compiler that stands alone as a C compiler and nothing but a C compiler.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Unhappy

      Re: Visual Studio 6

      "And REMOVE that blasted SourceSafe which makes the Source repository very unSafe."

      ack, even CVS would be an improvement over THAT. I've never seen MORE corrupted repos than with "Source [un]Safe".

  39. Someone Else Silver badge

    Caption

    Microsoft corporate VP Julia Liuson, responsible for programming languages and tools

    Oh, so she's the one responsible for Micros~1's continuing inability to produce a standards-compliant compiler.

    1. Def Silver badge

      Re: Caption

      The Visual C++ compiler is equally compliant as GCC and Clang for C++11 and C++14, and more (read: fully) compliant for C++17.

      https://en.cppreference.com/w/cpp/compiler_support

  40. Paul Hovnanian Silver badge

    Tell us where Windows hurt you

    Show us on the doll where Microsoft touched you.

  41. Anonymous Coward
    Windows

    Oh the pain

    it's, ......it's the, .........the, ................the bloody Tablet interface.

    It stuffs just about everything, Well everything really !

    Where? Everywhere !!!!

    Go back to Windows 7 OR XP, and never go to the Tablet interface unless it on a Tablet device.

    That means a TabletOS !!!!!!!!!!! for a Tablet

    and

    A PC device for a PC.

    DOH!

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Everything

    Yes Everything and then there is 'before Windoze 10 !!!'

    Don't impose an anti-competitive store on people !

    Microsoft "should have" designed an Operating System, and then designed 'specific custom software' for individual customers, not buttfucked people to bully their sad excuse for the extra crap the sell.

    NO1 Microsoft Way = NO Way Microsoft ! = Wake UP {scream}

    It's nice to see such enthusiasm for product by workers but it breeds blindness, narrow-mindedness and enforcement of an ignorant set of ideas on Billions of people with different needs than one group could imagine. BE open to possibility no closed and imposing.

  43. Handy Andy
    Pint

    Amnesia

    Microsofts amnesia hurts all of us.

    They need some more grey-hairs to stop them skipping round like a puppy on steroids.

  44. Concrete Gannet

    You shouldn't have to ask

    "So, tell me your pain points" is the wrong question to ask.

    Microsoft have zero institutional memory. People move too often and anything the previous person committed to is forgotten when someone new takes over. The question and attitude is symptomatic of that. Surely research and understanding has already been done, but Ms Liuson imagines she can start with a blank slate. Do not throw away what Microsoft as an organisation already knows.

    Just throwing out the question will only attract answers from people who imagine that answering will be productive. People who have seen it all before will ignore it.

    Platform change is the killer. If we have to make a wholesale change for an application to work on this year's "strategic platform", we may well abandon the platform altogether.

    1. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

      Re: You shouldn't have to ask

      "Ms Liuson imagines she can start with a blank slate"

      Bit presumptuous? Asking, surely, must be better than having no interest at all? (Which, strangely, seems to describe MS quite well through so many of their years.)

  45. Boork!

    I could show you - but I would need an anatomical doll.

  46. JuJuBalt

    She is clueless....does the right hand talk to the left hand.....UWP is all XAML based and they were happy to have that on mobile before...so WPF is just the father of that....and the new Fluent UI in Windows is mainly XAML based....and now a more adaptive layout with the concept of "compact", or "expanded" layout modes. Heck, XAML has had the ability to adapt to different environments from day one...it's just they never pushed the concept or design it in, to make it easy and consistent to do. Cross plat UI is the thing that can save a million hours of wasted dev hours battling with disparate frameworks, and other kludges.

  47. anonymous boring coward Silver badge

    Waiting 5 hours for a simple OS update, when a complete reinstall from scratch would take a fraction of that time, hurt quite a lot.

    I almost expected MS to get their act together now when they cram updates down peoples throats. But my deepest suspicions about MS's ineptitude (or lack or care?) unfortunately turned out to be true.

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