Windows XP, Bill Gates to (partially) retire in two weeks

In two weeks, Microsoft will sweep a big chunk of its past behind it. As News.com reports, June 30 will be the day Bill Gates retires from his day-to-day activities at the company, and it will also be the day Windows XP disappears from most new desktop and notebook PCs. But just as Gates will stay on as chairman and advisor, Windows XP will live on in several niches.

News.com says the almost seven-year-old operating system will remain available from smaller PC makers, also known as system builders, until January 31 of next year. As we reported some time ago, XP will survive in some low-cost subnotebooks until July 2010. Also until July 2010, folks in emerging markets will be able to purchase the Starter Edition of Windows XP. Finally, the Business and Ultimate editions of Windows Vista will come with “downgrade rights” to XP until January 31, 2009.

News.com learned that Acer, Dell, HP, and Lenovo will take advantage of the downgrade rights option to offer XP on some of their systems until that deadline (or, in the case of HP, “at least July 30, 2009”). With Dell and HP, users will be able to order systems “factory downgraded” to XP, and they’ll also get Vista licenses out of the deal.

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    • herothezero
    • 11 years ago

    q[<#23, Reasons why Vista is disliked? Here are some possible ones...<]q Dude, it was a rhetorical question--my point is that people want whatever new OS comes out to be just like XP. Hell, stupid people are saying, "I'm waiting for Windows 7," foolishly not realizing that W7 is based on Vista, not XP. And while I'm hardly an M$ apologist, your reasons for Vista being unpopular are suspect. Enthusiasts might upgrade, but consumers don't upgrade--they just change out boxes with a preloaded OS. That's why consumer adoption of Vista has been much higher than that of corporate customers, which tend to change out systems on 3-5 year rotations. The driver issue for Vista was real, but there wasn't anything M$ could do about that. The situation is much improved. Here's another news flash; except for the OSS crusaders at /., no one cares about Linux on the desktop...still. That's not changed since forever. As for M$'s relationship with businesses, you're deluding yourself if you think corporate IT folks are considering dumping M$ en masse.

    • herothezero
    • 11 years ago

    q[

      • stmok
      • 11 years ago

      Reasons why Vista is disliked? Here are some possible ones…

      (1) MS took too long in bringing out Vista.

      The whole industry felt comfortable with XP. People are familiar with XP, they know how to tweak it, secure it, etc. The thinking here is: “Why change when I don’t need to? XP does what I need.”

      Think about it…WinXP Pro using:
      * Limited User Account
      * Software Restriction Policy
      * SuRun (escalate to Admin privileges when you need to)
      * AV + HIPS
      * Your Brain
      => Sufficiently secure for the desktop user.

      (2) XP has lower system requirements.

      In the business world, people don’t like to change that much. The cost of Vista isn’t just the OS itself, its also the new hardware needed, as well as the need to spend time and money on making sure their software solutions will work on Vista.

      For the consumer, I’m not quite sure precisely why Vista isn’t well accepted. The reasons vary. Some people don’t like being “encouraged” to upgrade. Others don’t like the change. People got annoyed with UAC. (MS admitted it was designed to annoy).

      Vista’s hardware requirements aren’t subtle like in the past versions of Windows, they’re very noticeable. (especially in the case of Nettops and Netbooks).

      (3) Manufacturers and drivers.

      For some people, their hardware is no longer working correctly under Vista. That is, there are cases where Vista doesn’t have the driver and the Manufacturer won’t produce one in a poor attempt to get people buying new hardware.

      In the case of my sister’s Vista Home Premium based notebook, it won’t work correctly with our networked HP Color LaserJet. With the HP produced Vista driver, it does NOT print in color. (Its the same with the Vista default driver)…The printer works fine under Win2k/XP, Linux, BSD, and even on my cousin’s Mac.

      (4) People are catching on.

      The general practice is to continually keep people to spend money on a regular basis. You can only go so far with this paradigm as the features or excuses you offer becomes lesser and lesser value to the consumer.

      In the long run, people just won’t bother anymore as their current solution fits their needs. ie: Its good enough.

      (5) Competition in the form of *nix based solutions.

      *nix as in Unix, Linux, etc.

      Mac and Linux are getting noticed. There is a slow and gradual increase in numbers. (still tiny compared to Windows marketshare)

      Mac gets attention because its polished and slick. Its attention is focused on the user. Of course, it also helps when you have Steve Jobs’s charisma and a marketing campaign that regularly pokes at Microsoft’s weaknesses.

      Linux gets attention because its free (liberty as well as price) and its flexible. There’s plenty to choose from. The key advantage about Linux’s model, is that: If you aren’t happy with something, you have the option to pick something else or take matters into your own hands…Here are the tools to do it. They’re free too!

      The point here is, for so long, MS has been seen as the only option. When someone else comes along that offers a different approach without the weaknesses of MS’s approach to computing, its no surprise some people have decided not to bother with the next version of Windows after XP.

      Its partially MS’s fault. Why?

      They could have taken a more proactive role back in Win2k era. (Especially true for security). Had they done that, Windows wouldn’t have acquired the reputation of being a “malware magnet”. Their slowness to react to fast changing times is what’s killing them. (especially true with Internet search, new markets like EeePC and clones, etc).

      In addition, for Vista, they promised so much…And yet they never delivered. The trust between the business and consumer relations is not on good terms. (Breaking a promise is a big withdrawal in relationships). As such, there’s no customer loyalty for Microsoft. I suppose this is made worse now that XP is being retired.

    • jstern
    • 11 years ago

    Omg, I could never go back to XP after 1 year of using Vista. I wonder why so many people hate it.

      • albundy
      • 11 years ago

      maybe because it lacks much innovation and its interface drives users up the wall. that and the mac commercials are really funny. Gonna try for a Vista-OSX dual boot on my next system build and see how it goes.

      • Price0331
      • 11 years ago

      Because the not very well resourced GUI slows overall system performance as much as 30%. That’s my one and only reason for not having it, otherwise it’s decently solid with some nice features, and the disk accessing speeds help make up for it. As long as you aren’t using an nVidia card with it, that is. ; ]. (blue screen inducing)

        • jstern
        • 11 years ago

        I’m using Vista on a macbook connected to a Dell 24 inch monitor. The Cpu is at around 5 to 10% as I write this and listen to an mp3. It’s using 1107mb with 1420mb free, and isn’t it better for my computer to actually use available ram to improve performance like vista does, than to have it there doing nothing like in XP?

          • Price0331
          • 11 years ago

          Not when you are playing a game and that ram is still being used up as a background process. In crysis with XP I can run it at all high with no hiccups. When I tried that in vista, all the same settings, I had quite a bit of lag. Sure if you are just listening to music and web browsing you won’t be able to tell, but for me performance is everything, and it especially slows me down in 3d apps such as inventor.

          But games probably aren’t you’re thing sense you have a mac. ; ]

            • MadManOriginal
            • 11 years ago

            Rest of your system specs? Ram amount and hard drive speed would seem to play a major role in pre-fetch. I’m not sure why your background apps don’t get out of the way though unless you’ve got <2GB of Ram. 4GB and x64 version can also have a notable impact, games plus background apps will fit within 4GB with Ram to spare.

    • aleckermit
    • 11 years ago

    I hope Bill can support himself without a job…

    ;p

    • MarioJP
    • 11 years ago

    I have vista 64 oem with a custom built rig. At first i was going to leave it with dualboot with xp and vista just in case. But realizing that everything i had on my xp works fine with vista and i have no intention of keeping xp anymore. So this won’t affect me at all. Sides I have 8gb of ram and 32 bit os like xp wont see all my ram. XP64 its too late. So i made the switch to vista64 instead. And no problems here like what you guys are saying

    • Mystic-G
    • 11 years ago

    Quick, buy a MCE 2005 before they’re no longer sold!!

    • MarioJP
    • 11 years ago

    lol windows me

    • StashTheVampede
    • 11 years ago

    Why are there so many staunch users that still want XP? I’m not saying that Vista is the greatest thing since sliced bread, but users can *still* run XP on their current machines, right?

    Imagine if “users” pressured Microsoft to keep Windows ME around.

      • Krogoth
      • 11 years ago

      I don’t know. XP was MS OS choice for systems of yesterday.

      Vista is MS OS choice of systems of today and tomorrow.

      • matic
      • 11 years ago

      XP was an obvious upgrade from ME and was perceived like so. For the little I’ve used Vista I feel it like paprika in my underwear: at most irritating.

        • StashTheVampede
        • 11 years ago

        Show me a company that spends so much time still working on supporting an OS that is as old as XP. XP isn’t terribly old, but you aren’t looking at MANY major companies that are running “consumer” OSes that have been on the market as long as XP, right?

          • matic
          • 11 years ago

          You are right. But still Xp to Vista isn’t exactly like ME to XP, at least IMHO 🙂

      • ludi
      • 11 years ago

      Imagine if Win98 users pressured Microsoft to stop forcing WinMe down their throats.

        • jss21382
        • 11 years ago

        uhm…there would have been no difference?

      • odizzido
      • 11 years ago

      Going from 98 to XP offered quite a few benefits. Going from 98 to ME didn’t.

      Going from XP to vista offers me no benefits either. I use the windows classic skin, so all the fancy graphics vista offers never come up. Once you get rid of the pretty curtains, vista is almost identical to XP. Vista does a few things better, and a few things worse. It would be a tie if it weren’t for a few bugs in vista that make XP my OS of choice.

      I guess it wouldn’t be a tie actually, since vista takes more to run without offering me anything in return. XP till the next windows release for me.

    • eitje
    • 11 years ago

    Yknow, I never saw anyone complain about Redhat 5.0 support disappearing. 😉

      • pikaporeon
      • 11 years ago

      Thats because it still works fine if you know what you’re doing ; )

    • evermore
    • 11 years ago

    l[

    • matic
    • 11 years ago

    People should face reality, operating systems come and go, bringing new features and fading away without regrets. Say goodbye to Windows XP, say hello to Ubuntu.

      • Smurfer2
      • 11 years ago

      haha, not sure Ubuntu is the answer yet. I’m still working on getting my Ubuntu box to do everything I want. However, Ubuntu > OS X.

      • stmok
      • 11 years ago

      Ubuntu feels bloated compared to its Xfce based brother…Xubuntu.

      In fact, if you are after speed, go with something like Slackware or Arch Linux. (A better compromise could be Vector Linux).

        • matic
        • 11 years ago

        Been there, done that. I’ve used Xubuntu 7.10, I liked it but didn’t found it to be soooo much faster than Ubuntu. Less bloated yes but not that much. Old users of Xfce say it is no more snappy like it used to be. For the 8.04 release I choosed the mainstream Winbuntu… errr, Ubuntu!

        • BobbinThreadbare
        • 11 years ago

        I like bloat when it adds functionality.

    • Majiir Paktu
    • 11 years ago

    I have profound feelings of “this is horseshit” about retiring operating systems. Remove them from OEMs, sure–but altogether is just douchebag marketing. If it could only be purchased in a retail box, who would buy it… a few enthusiasts. Wow, big market segment. Good job, Microsoft.

    (P.S. Normally I’m a total M$ fanboy.)

      • evermore
      • 11 years ago

      What do you expect them to do? Keep producing XP discs for all time, and continue issuing patches for it? Existing updates will probably be available on Windows Updates for a long time to come, and if you can find an XP disc in the wild a year from now, you can install it. I doubt they’re going to demand any unsold copies be returned.

      Enthusiasts also rarely buy an OS at retail.

        • Majiir Paktu
        • 11 years ago

        l[

          • no51
          • 11 years ago

          I bought mine at retail. 40% off when the CompUSA’s were shutting down.

    • ssidbroadcast
    • 11 years ago

    Wow, up is down in the new millenium.

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