* Posts by Richard Plinston

2362 posts • joined 27 Apr 2009

Microsoft has designed an Arm Linux IoT cloud chip. Repeat, an Arm Linux IoT cloud chip

Richard Plinston
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Re: Embrace Extend Extinguish

> I don't recall a hew and cry from the Linux userbase to get rid of X windows

X-windows is a networking layer which is nowadays seldom used over a network. Wayland is a project that will remove that overhead to provide faster graphics and, especially, lower resource usage for smaller devices. The userbase _is_ asking for these benefits for gaming and mobile devices. Wayland won't get rid of X-windows at all, it will just be another option with compatibility.

> having one ring to rule them all (SystemD) is just a bad idea.

Init and some others have not gone away.

https://sysdfree.wordpress.com/2018/04/02/135/

> There are a lot of things going on in Linux today that I don't like and think are pointless

That is OK, These are just more choices. The way Linux works is that additional choices don't remove previous mechanisms. There is no equivalent of 'Windows 7 UI being killed'. If you don't like Unity or Gnome 3 then you can still use whatever you prefer.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Ah the sweet smell of corporate hypocrisy ...

> Im sure they could have used a version of Windows,

They tried that with Windows 8 IoT and Windows 10 IoT. It seems to be a complete failure. So, no, they couldn't use Windows.

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Google's not-Linux OS documentation cracks box open at last

Richard Plinston
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Re: Who Cares?

> What I'm hoping will happen is the manufacturers/OSS community anticipate this too, and are working on an open source equivalent of the "Play store" for Android,

"""F-Droid is both a repository of verified free software Android apps as well as a whole “app store kit”, providing all the tools needed to setup and run an app store."""

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Call me a cynic....

> It seems only Amazon has a drop in replacement for Play Services

Microsoft/Nokia - for their Android X

Samsung

Baidu

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Intel outside: Apple 'prepping' non-Chipzilla Macs by 2020 (stop us if you're having deja vu)

Richard Plinston
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Re: Are you still here?

> Android has a bit of it with JVM

Android never had JVM. It had Dalvik and now has ART.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Why?

> the ordinary Mac user is likely to have to buy new copies of some software

Existing machines won't stop working, nor will their CPUs change the instruction sets they use.

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Donald Trump jumps on anti-tech bandwagon, gets everything wrong

Richard Plinston
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Re: Time for Twitter to bring down the ban hammer on the Trump

> he certainly doesn't have much of a filter between what he thinks and what he says...

He certainly doesn't have much of a filter between what he sees on Fox and what he says...

FTFY

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Richard Plinston
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Re: @Pascal Monett -- "Can you still be President if you're in the pen?"

> The second one is "remove from office"

IMHO that would be an even worse situation. Pence not only thinks that The Rapture is coming soon but will try to ensure that it will - with . Trump is merely a corrupt criminal liar, Pence is insane.

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SUSE bakes a Raspberry Pi-powered GNU/Linux Enterprise Server

Richard Plinston
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> I'm still waiting for a blade chassis (with RMM) that I can slip a dozen into.

That is what the Compute module is for.

https://www.google.com/search?q=pi+compute+module+blade&client=firefox-b&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiA8oO8zJXaAhVHO7wKHar1A98QsAQIQg&biw=1185&bih=704

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Microsoft loves Linux so much it wants someone else to build distros for its Windows Store

Richard Plinston
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cf OS/2

When IBM added Windows 3.x to OS/2 it finally solved the problem of whether to develop for Windows or OS/2 Presentation Manager. The answer was Windows because it would then run on both.

Now the answer could be 'Linux' because it will run on both. All that is needed is an X server, or just develop web apps with the server on Linux or WSL.

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Richard Plinston
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> That's not where this is going. Microsoft are making it unnecessary to run the Linux kernel, which is quite the opposite.

Of course, if people make good use of WSL they may find that it is the Windows kernel that is made unnecessary.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: What's in it for distros?

> I seriously don't understand what the appeal of having distros in the Microsoft Store is (to anybody who isn't Microsoft).

At least it would be _someone_ adding stuff into Microsoft Store.

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Patch LOSE-day: Microsoft secures servers of the world. By disconnecting them

Richard Plinston
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> Isn't that a legacy command line tool for *Nix systems, etc?

It is scriptable, and thus can be made automatic, so one doesn't have to frig around in a GUI everytime.

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Richard Plinston
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> some real "developer" tossers out there who STILL lock their license keys to IP address.

I wondered how that could possibly work. A home computer on a dial up modem or ADSL, for example, could get a completely different IP address from their ISP every time they connect. With a network it is trivial to change IP address and several machines could have the same address as long as they don't try to communicate.

The answer seems to be that they _don't_ lock the licence to the computer's IP, it is the licence _server's_ IP that is locked to the licence. The server can control how many machines are using the software.

"""The license key delivered to you must be converted to a permanent key that is locked to the IP address of the computer that runs the DialOut/EZ License Manager."""

So the license server should have a fixed IP, or even a reserved IP on the DHCP server, but the clients running to software may not need to have the same IP each time.

I did have some software that was licensed to the network card MAC address. Did they not know about ifconfig ?

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Oh dear

> Very poor practice to rely on static IPs

I was at a meeting with one of my client's network consultant. He was adamant that using DHCP (with reserved IP addresses) was 'best practice'. I disabused him of that idea - forcefully. The client had a workshop with several CNC lathes and flat-beds, each with a separate desktop computer where the designs were created and loaded to the lathe. I had provided each pair with a separate switch and fixed IPs. This catered for several failure modes in the network that using DHCP did not. It allowed the revenue earning to continue by catering for keeping the lathes and flat-beds running regardless. And, yes, later there was a power failure after which the servers did not restart.

The use of static IPs or not is not a 'one size fits all' situation.

> at least use DHCP giving out reserved IP addresses based on MAC address.

While that may solve some problems it leads to others. For example a failed network card cannot just be swapped and everything carries on as normal, it is no longer just a hardware problem.

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Windows 10 to force you to use Edge, even if it isn't default browser

Richard Plinston
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Re: Fucking idiots

> Surely, a better decision would have been to get her to buy her own Apple device?

No, she would have wound up with the pink one.

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Breaking up is hard to do: Airbus, new bae Google and clinging on to Microsoft's 'solutions'

Richard Plinston
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Re: New???

> Spreadsheets are rarely *that* complex, and if they are, ..

If they are then it is the _wrong_ tool for the job.

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Richard Plinston
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> Says an AC. Troll or astroturfer ?

Most likely it was RICHTO/TheVogon yet again.

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Linux Foundation backs new ‘ACRN’ hypervisor for embedded and IoT

Richard Plinston
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Re: Balony

> the brake hydraulics proper couldn't care less, they just keep working.

And the hydraulics are dual circuit so if one fails you still have brakes on two front wheels and one rear. And if that fails too, there is still the hand brake which (on my car) is cable operated.

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Former Google X bloke's startup unveils 'self flying' electric air taxi

Richard Plinston
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Re: "Fully electric"..."Emissions free"

> What they said (given where most electricity actually comes from) is flat out bu***hit.

"""Flight tests have been taking place in New Zealand"""

In the South Island, where this is being flown, almost all electricity is hydro. Thus they are perfectly correct. How it operates in your country may depend on how archaic your electricity system is.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Not again!

> think that the Wrights invented the aeroplane,

They did have the patent on ailerons. This held back aircraft development for a few years.

You get the same effect with "Lindbergh was the first to fly the Atlantic" - he was around 57th.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: I'm not an aviation engineer...

> if this is supposed to be a city-based air taxi why was the video flying over mountains and valleys;

During development they don't want it falling on cars and pedestrians. The odd goat they can deal with.

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Millionaire-backed science fiction church to launch Scientology TV network

Richard Plinston
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Re: Sounds familiar

> why do SO many celebs fall for this obvious bullcrap?

Because they are _paid_. It is a sponsorship deal just like dozens of commercial products.

The primary reason that victims fall for Scientology is that they are failures and this cult shows them that their failure is NOT THEIR FAULT. It is the fault of 'invisible Thetans' and this can be 'cleared' (along with their bank account). 'Sponsoring' successful celebrities and inventing stories that they were failures until they found Scientology is great marketing.

It is _all_ about the money.

> it seems that Elron actually BELIEVED his own B.S.

I don't know why you would think that. If the story that Dianetics was based on a book that he found is true, and it is certainly true that the rest of Scientology is based on his crap SciFi, then what he believed was that lots of money and teenage girls were his reward.

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Richard Plinston
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Dianetics, the book

It was alleged, probably by Heinlen, that the book 'Dianetics' which started Scientology, was plagiarized by Elron. He had found a copy of a book in a 2nd hand shop in Paris, this had been written by a frenchman in the early 1930s and had been self published with a print run of just a 100 or so, most of which hadn't sold. Elron's Dianetics is primarily a translation of that.

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Microsoft says 'majority' of Windows 10 use will be 'streamlined S mode'

Richard Plinston
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> The Triumph Herald "S" was a cut-down version

The real 'cut-down' version was originally, when it first came out, you could get one as a kitset (and didn't have to pay the 45% purchase tax on cars).

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Majority to use S mode?

> MS went too far with Windows 8

The whole point of Windows 8 'Metro' (later 'Modern') was that Windows Phone was not selling as well as predicted (outsell iPhone by 2014!). Consultants opined that it was because the WP interface was not well known. The solution was to make that interface 'the most well known' by forcing it down the throats of all desktop users until they _demanded_ it on their phones.

Now, it seems, some consultants have suggested that the reason that to 'Store' is not being used enough is because users haven't tried it and discovered that they love it. 10S and Mode-S is to force it down the users' throats until they demand that all software developers put their software there.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: S for...

> as Linux on windows is available as a store app, Window S just makes it easy to run Linux

I am not sure that the store works like that. Just because something is in the store for Windows 10 does not mean that it is available for Windows 10S or S-mode.

Apps may be in the store for Windows Phone 8 but won't show up to be installed for Windows 10.

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Windows 10 S to become a 'mode', not a discrete product

Richard Plinston
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Re: This isn't news

> I think it was only to make devs shit themselves into thinking they have to develop UWP.

Developers of Windows Mobile 6,x were dumped on from on high when Windows Phone 7 was completely incompatible in all respects. WP8 was also a large change in direction. WM10 dumped all those to go UWP, and then died. RT was also a dead end. Developers are now weary of doing anything other than 'legacy' Win32 where they can still sell to the masses of Win7, 8 and 10.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Horesh*t

> Any other 'reason' MS come up with is pure horsesh*t.

3. It steals revenue from OEMs and retail. At present OEMs install Windows 10 and, probably, Office and add these to the computer price plus some markup for profit. With 'S mode' loaded and locked the computers will be cheaper because there will be no, or much less, software revenue for the OEM or retailer and thus no, or less, markup. They won't sell add-ons because those must be installed with the end-user's account. Microsoft will get revenue directly from the user for upgrading to full Windows and for selling Office and other software from the store.

This is probably why 10S is no longer a thing - OEMs and retailers don't want it, and nor do normal users.

Schools may have been sucked in by the lower initial prices, but they will suffer later from the restrictions and lack of software and/or extra costs to go full 10 so they can use real software.

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Paul Allen's six-engined monster plane prepares for space deliveries

Richard Plinston
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Re: You'll never get me up in one of those things

> Firing the load on-wing might sound like a good idea from an efficiency point of view but consider what happens to the carrier aircraft if the rocket engines misfire or explode.

Or what happens if the release fails to release.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Balloons/airships ?

> Pull yourself up along that rope and you have an space elevator.

You would also need to accelerate laterally. At ground level at the equator your velocity will be 1600kph. At geostationary orbit it will need to be 11,000 kph. You cannot take energy for acceleration from the tether as this would slow down the satellite.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: if you can breathe air

> So if you can breathe air {and use that as a significant part of the exhaust) the rocket itself becomes more efficient. It's only when you get to an altitude where air breathing isn't practical any more that you have to use 'fuel only' to propel you.

The only advantage of 'breathing air' is that you get to use the oxygen in it to burn the fuel rather than having to use the LOX that otherwise has to be carried. A rocket engine using fuel + LOX is completely incompatible with an air breathing engine and so there would have to be 2 completely different systems. in order to get sufficient thrust to make air breathing worth while for the short time the rocket is within the atmosphere the weight and cost are prohibitive.

The Falcon Heavy Lift produces around 23,000Kn. - about the same as 100 747 engines - each weighing 4 tonnes just for the engine.

Merely processing air for its mass without using the oxygen would produce no benefit at all, it would take more energy to accelerate the air than would be obtained in thrust.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: You'll never get me up in one of those things

> Computer or other closed-loop feedback systems are a necessary part on several types of aircraft. I believe that the Harrier would be impossible to fly if a human had to make all the control adjustments needed to keep it stable,

The P.1127, Kestrel and Harrier were all manual control. They did not have any computer stabilization.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: DOUBLE THE MASS

> If you double the delta velocity, it takes 4 times the energy to do it. OR, if you DOUBLE THE MASS, it only takes TWICE the energy. In both cases, you get twice the thrust.

No. If you double the velocity you do not "take 4 times the energy to do it" if the mass flow (kg per sec) remains the same. However, if the nozzle is the same size then the mass flow will also double and thus it will "take 4 times the energy to do it", but it will give you FOUR TIMES the thrust

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Richard Plinston
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Re: You'll never get me up in one of those things

> stress which the central section thus has to bear.

When an aircraft flies the lift comes from all along the span. The wings try to go up, the heavy bits try to go down. By distributing the weight: payload, fuel, fuselage(s) , engines; over all the span you _reduce_ the bending load. It is likely that the critical structural point is when the rocket is dropped and the lift of the central part of the wing is producing lift while carrying less weight.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Balloons/airships ?

> In theory, you could build an entire moonbase in orbit, and gently drop it onto the moon, ready for habitation ?

How would you get it to be "gentle"? You couldn't use a parachute. Think: dropping a piano off the Empire state Building.

> Not being au fait with the science,

That is obvious.

> how easy would it be to rig up a true conveyor (think paternoster lifts) between earth and a point in LEO.

You cannot 'rig up' a conveyor to LEO (Low Earth Orbit). The Earth takes 24 hour to rotate, LEO is around 90 to 120 minutes. It needs to be to geostationary orbit, around 25,000 miles up.

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Richard Plinston
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> using some sort of balloon to do the heavy lifting to 100Km,

You certainly couldn't get to 100Km with any useful payload. At higher altitudes the air density falls and so does its ability to lift. At 50Km the density and lifting power is about 1/1000 of that at the surface, at 100Km it is about 1/1,000,000.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Atmosphere_model.png

The aircraft not only takes the rocket to altitude, it also gives it an initial speed of a few hundred km/hour which a balloon could not do. Rockets are launched as close to the equator as possible because the surface speed there is about 1000mph (1600kph) which is a good start to gaining orbital velocity. Another 500 or 600 kph adds to that.

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Microsoft's Windows 10 Workstation adds killer feature: No Candy Crush

Richard Plinston
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Re: A thought.

@TheVogon

You forgot to click [] Post Anonymously, but your comments are recognisable anyway.

> No, Microsoft are not charging by # cores for Windows 10. Only by CPU type.

And yet the Microsoft price list disagrees with you:

"""Update: An OEM price list shared with me by a contact shows the list price of Windows 10 Pro for Workstations (up to four cores) is $144; for more than four cores, $214."""

http://www.zdnet.com/article/microsoft-may-have-price-increases-in-store-for-windows-10-pro-workstation-win-10-downgrade/

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Windows slithers on to Arm, legless?

Richard Plinston
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Re: Going from 32 to 64 bit was so simple nobody really noticed it happened

> apparently in 64-bit mode (which they call "long" mode) you can have 16-bit protected mode processes

16-bit protected mode is 80286 native mode. The 80286 was brain dead so nobody cares.

> Because, in theory, a "well behaved" 16-bit application SHOULD be possible to run in 64-bit mode...

It may be that "in theory" a particular design could run 16bit V86 and 64bit together, but the AMD design does not. Programs run by executing instructions. Instructions have particular bit layouts. These have a number of bits assigned to the op-code. You cannot have more different op-codes than the number of bits allow. AMD-64 long mode requires additional op-codes so they reused some numbers that overlapped stuff that was 20 years out of date.

Virtual86 and Real86 are for running 8086 programs, that design is from 1978 - 40 years ago.

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Richard Plinston
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> Then why the push for ARM on servers?

For the savings on power and cooling. Servers with dozens or hundreds of cores can switch off all the unused ones. It is about the money.

> you probably have an inroad into the gaming sector as well.

No. Gamers want all the processing power running flat out all the time and don't care about the cost. It seems they also want expensive and elaborate cooling systems for street cred.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Wedded to Intel

> MS was a multi-platform company right from the start.

As was the whole personal computer and microcomputer industry from the mid 70s.

> As was MS DOS:

MS-DOS was Intel 8086/8088* only. It could be used on many different architectures (as long as they used 8088 or 8086) because each OEM had to write their own MS-BIOS to deal with the actual I/O hardware. This mechanism was copied from DRI's CP/M. It wasn't "provided" for score of architectures, the OEMs had to do it.

> So different platforms have always been part of the MS programmer expectation, part of the culture.

That was true a couple of developer generations ago. MS Basic on 6502 and 6800 was 40 years or more ago. The last MS-DOS that ran on non-IBM-PC-Clones was 4.x. Sure, if you're a developer now retired or moved to management then you may have dim memories of a time before.

> So different platforms have always been part of the MS programmer expectation, part of the culture.

Not for the current generation of developer and users it isn't. They were confused by RT and failed to buy it in droves, and returned it when they did buy it. Windows is Windows, if it doesn't run program x, then it is a failure.

* There was MSX-DOS for MSX machines that ran on Z80 but it was a CP/M clone, not a version of MS-DOS. There was also MS-DOS 4.0 and 4.1 (not to be confused with the later 4.01) that was 80286 based but this was soon dumped.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: "is on course to become the world's default desktop OS over the next 2-3 y"

> are also more likely to invest in the Store app.

Software, especially Store apps, are _not_ an 'investment', they are a cost.

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Richard Plinston
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> What it really needs is the support of developers to actually support the target architecture to get native execution performance rather than just lazily expect that the emulation layer will take care of it for you

From the late 70s through the 80s and 90s I (and my clients) ran DRI multiuser operating systems from MP/M, Concurrent-DOS-386, DR-Multiuser-DOS to Systems Manager. These could run MS-DOS programs and actual Windows 3.11 (in fact could run several simultaneously). The major problems was that DOS developers would use 'keyhit()' to know when a key had been hit and this sat in a tight loop waiting for a keystroke and used up all the CPU cycles it could grab - not good for a multi-tasking and multi-user system. They probably still do that.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: "alleviated things somewhat."

> Emulation may be useful, but if and when always running everything under emulation, you start to ask why not use the native environment....

Windows 3.x on OS/2 was a real and full actual Windows 3.1. It also ran Microsoft's Win32s.DLL. What Microsoft did next was add a completely spurious memory access that was a greater address than 2 Gbytes. This did nothing useful except exceed OS/2's virtual memory limit and stop the latest versions being used. Then MS could break applications by requiring the latest version.

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Richard Plinston
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> The fact it could run a full (or seamless, akin to how XP mode works in 7) Windows 3.1 session

That was why it died. Developers could have developed for Windows 3.x or for OS/2 Presentation Manager, but when IBM added Win3.x to OS/2 then developers could target that and get their applications running on both Windows and OS/2. Then there was no point in having OS/2.

When Windows 10 adds an X server to its Linux compatibility then, maybe, developers will target Linux to get it running on Windows and the system that they use.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: .Net

> One of the reasons Windows Phone 8 required little resources and was snappier is ...

You are confused. Windows Phone 7 "required little resources". It ran using WinCE which was like the MS-DOS of phones: single task, no background tasks except a sort of TSR-like process and tombstoning. It was promoted as 'requiring little resources' because it couldn't handle more than one core, there was no point in giving it more. Windows 8 was "snappier", or appeared so, because it required a dual core and dedicated one core to the UI. This impacted on background tasks but most apps still did tombstoning anyway.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: .Net

> If you want to run on Intel or ARM on Windows or Linux, then Java is the obvious answer.

You seem to be hammered with down votes. Java is obviously _not_ the answer, or not the only answer, because I have a RaspberryPi alongside my other Linux machines and it has all the software that I need without it being written in Java.

I write in Python and that is all good wherever I want to run it.

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Richard Plinston
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> Windows 8 x86/x64 != Windows 8 RT != Windows Mobile 8 (or whatever it was called)

You missed Windows 8 IOT (later there was Windows 10 IOT) which was completely different yet again.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: Going from 32 to 64 bit was so simple nobody really noticed it happened

> Linux can be a PITA with lots of stuff still needing 32bit libraries.

In what way ? If you need 32bit libraries they are still there with most distros. Install a 32bit app from the repository and the appropriate libraries will automatically be installed.

> I wish MS well in getting everything moved to 64bit (I probably need to go and sit down in a darkened room). The hardware has been 64bit for at least 5 years now so it really should be time to pension off 32bit binaries.

And you complained about losing 20 year old 16bit stuff !!!

Actually, Microsoft is reviving 32 bit with its ARM/x86 hybrid that will only run 32bit x86. Users are going to be pissed when it won't run the software they use on their desktops.

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Richard Plinston
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Re: "so why removal of WOW16 and NTVDM? Dosbox works."

> Once again: AMD removed the Virtual86 mode from CPU in 64 bit mode.

While the _Intel_ 64 bit design also removed Virtual86 mode _and_ x86 32bit mode.

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