Microsoft sees future in Windows 8 amid iPad rise

Feb 28, 2012 By MICHAEL LIEDTKE , AP Technology Writer
In this Sept. 13, 2011 file photo, Steven Sinofsky, president of Windows and Windows Live, gives the keynote address and a preview of Windows 8 at the Microsoft Build Windows conference at the Anaheim Convention Center in Anaheim, Calif. A test, or “beta”, version of the revamped operating system will be unveiled Wednesday, Feb. 29, 2012, in Barcelona, nudging it a step closer to its anticipated release next fall.(AP Photo/The Orange County Register, Mark Rightmire, File) MAGD OUT; LOS ANGELES TIMES OUT

(AP) -- Microsoft is scrambling to preserve what's left of its kingdom. Since the company released its Windows operating system in 1985, most of the sequels have been variations on the same theme. Not that it mattered much. Regardless of the software's quality, Microsoft managed to remain at the center of the personal computing universe.

The stakes are much different as Microsoft Corp. puts the finishing touches on Windows 8 - perhaps the most important piece of software the Redmond, Wash., company has designed since co-founder Bill Gates won the contract to build the first operating system for IBM Corp.'s personal computer in the early 1980s.

A test, or "beta," version of the revamped operating system will be unveiled Wednesday in Barcelona, nudging Windows 8 a step closer to its anticipated mass market release in September or October. The company will offer the most extensive look at Windows 8's progress since it released an early version of the system to developers five months ago.

Microsoft designed Windows 8 to help it perform a difficult balancing act. The company hopes to keep milking revenue from a PC market that appears to be past its prime, while trying to gain a stronger foothold in the more fertile field of mobile devices. It's a booming market that, so far, has been defined and dominated by Apple Inc.'s trend-setting iPhone and iPad and Google Inc.'s ubiquitous Android software.

"Microsoft's future path is riding on Windows 8 and its success," said Gartner Inc. analyst David Cearley. "This is a chance for Microsoft to re-establish itself in a market where it's becoming increasingly irrelevant."

If Windows 8 is a hit, it could also help lift the fortunes of struggling PC makers, including Hewlett-Packard Co. and Dell Inc. Besides giving businesses and consumers a reason to consider new PC purchases, Windows 8 is expected to spawn a new breed of hybrid machines that will be part tablet computer, part laptop.

If Windows 8 is a flop, however, it will increase the pressure on Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer. His 12-year reign has been marred by the company's troubles adapting to an Internet-driven upheaval. As Microsoft has stumbled, faster-innovating companies such as Apple and Google have elbowed their way into a position to steer the direction of computing for the next decade or two.

Ballmer, known for his zealous faith in Microsoft, hails Windows 8 as the catalyst for an exciting - and lucrative - new era at the 37-year-old software maker.

Investors seem to be believers, too. Microsoft's stock gained 52 cents Tuesday to close at $31.87, the highest closing price since April 2008. The shares have climbed by 23 percent so far this year. By comparison, Apple's stock has surged 32 percent during the same period, while Google's shares have dropped 4 percent.

Microsoft's financial performance traditionally improves when it releases a new version of Windows. The last upgrade came in October 2009 when Windows 7 hit the market. The company has sold more than 525 million copies of Windows 7 since then. Part of Window 7's success stemmed from pent-up demand; the previous version, Vista, was so clunky and buggy that many PC users stuck with the system they already had on their machines or switched to Apple's technology on Mac computers.

Windows 8 is radically different from its predecessors. The system won't even have Microsoft's familiar "Start" menu. All applications are spread across a mosaic of tiles, as part of a design Microsoft calls "Metro." The tiles, which resemble road signs, can be navigated with a swipe of the finger on the display screen or with a keyboard and a computer mouse. The tiles also provide a glimpse at the activity occurring in applications connected to the Web, such as email.

The system also is expected to enable users to easily back up their pictures, movies, music and other files on a Microsoft storage service called SkyDrive, which will compete against Apple's iCloud.

The operating system's versatility means it can be used to power computer tablets, as well as traditional PCs.

Microsoft badly wants a piece of the tablet market that has been cutting into PC sales since Apple introduced the iPad two years ago.

In the quarter that included the holiday shopping season, Apple shipped 15.4 million iPads, more than doubling the volume from the same time a year earlier. Meanwhile, worldwide personal computer sales dipped slightly, and Microsoft's revenue in its Windows division declined 6 percent. It marked the fourth time in the past five quarters that Microsoft's Windows revenue has fallen from the previous year.

Reversing or slowing that trend is critical for Microsoft. It still relies on the PC industry for about 55 percent of its revenue, according to Nomura Equity Research analyst Rick Sherlund. "The launch of Windows 8 should provide a few years of robust growth and opportunity for Microsoft to reposition itself to better defend its position against challengers," Sherlund wrote in a note after Microsoft reported the latest erosion in its Windows division.

Besides spurring more sales of the new operating system, Windows 8 is likely to drive demand for the next generation of the Office suite, another major moneymaker for Microsoft.

Windows 8 could inspire more PC makers to design machines that combine the convenience of tablets with the utility of a notebook computer. These devices would be similar to the so-called "ultrabook" computers that offer a Windows-based version of Apple's lightweight MacBook Air machines. Once Windows 8 is available, the ultrabook line could be expanded to include machines equipped with a screen that swivels off the keyboard to take advantage of the system's touch controls and provide a tablet-like experience.

Microsoft clearly envisions Windows 8 becoming the foundation for pure tablets, too. That's why it's developing a version of Windows 8 that can run on the more tablet-friendly microprocessor technology licensed by ARM Holdings. That version will complement the Windows 8 design that will run on the Intel Corp. and Advanced Micro Devices Inc. chips that power most PCs.

HP, the world's largest PC maker, is already counting on Windows 8 to deliver better times. The company's division that includes desktop and laptop computers suffered a 15 percent drop in revenue during its more recent quarter ending in January. CEO Meg Whitman said last week that HP expects to release PCs and tablets running on Windows 8 in time for the holiday shopping season. HP's Windows 8 product line will include a tablet designed for corporate customers.

The biggest question hanging over Windows 8 is whether the long wait for the software will leave Microsoft hopelessly behind Apple and Google in mobile computing.

Whatever headlines Microsoft grabs during Wednesday's preview are likely to be quickly overshadowed next week when Apple is expected to show off the third version of the iPad.

Meanwhile, Google says more than 300 million smartphones and tablets are already running on its Android software, with another 850,000 devices getting activated each day. At that rate, another 155 million to 180 million devices could be running on Android by the time Windows 8 comes out in September or October. As it is, a version of Android is already running the second hottest-selling tablet, Amazon.com Inc.'s Kindle Fire.

"Microsoft is late to the game and this is a different game than they have been playing," Cearley said. "But if they hit a home run with Windows 8, it could still turn some things around."

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evropej
2.8 / 5 (5) Feb 28, 2012
Who has the feeling that windows 8 will get rid of the lingering windows pc users? Windows Vista doubled the amount of clicking to get to the same menus and I think Windows 8 will double this again. I have a feeling the MAC commercials are going to come back.

I understand corporations and power users will still use pc's but these are far and few. The masses love internet, social sites and email and you dont need a pc for that.
epsi00
4.8 / 5 (5) Feb 28, 2012
I think it's time for Microsoft to close its doors and throw the keys. In all the time they had the monopoly, they haven't once come up with an innovation worth calling it an innovation. Monopoly is not good for business, please MS go away.
Kinedryl
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 28, 2012
Just because the massed do expect more and more from mobile platform, the PC platform arrives to the mobile devices. After all, it's ineffective to handle two platforms, when the limit of speed of information flow becomes limited with user senses, not with computational power of device.
Monopoly is not good for business, please MS go away.
It's nonsense, the market share of Microsoft at the mobile platform is quite rudimentary (bellow 7% or so). If some dominant position exists there, then it's a position of Google.
epsi00
5 / 5 (5) Feb 28, 2012
Who has the feeling that windows 8 will get rid of the lingering windows pc users? Windows Vista doubled the amount of clicking to get to the same menus and I think Windows 8 will double this again. I have a feeling the MAC commercials are going to come back.


Maybe that's Microsoft idea of the Moore's Law, double the number of cliks to do the same thing with every release of an odious OS.
kaasinees
Feb 28, 2012
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
kristian_s
4.3 / 5 (3) Feb 28, 2012
We are witnessing the UNIX renaissance. I think it is good for human kind. I know it is good for people who care about OS design :-) (Maybe it is because UNIX has strong genes)
btb101
5 / 5 (2) Feb 28, 2012
I for one will not be getting windows 8.
I notice nothing has been mentioned of the 'kill switch'.. M/S have built in to the O/S a remotely accessible kill switch for anyone or any company who runs not so pure software. this enables M/S to scan your system (you actually agree to this in the licence agreement when you first install this) and if they find anything that does not agree with them, say a bit torrent or a emule program then they have the rights to switch that program off.

just as they do with modded xbox 360's. while they cannot stop the operating system, providing it is a legal copy, they can stop everything else one may have running on the computer.

This has been not been confirmed nor denied by M/S.
Doug_Huffman
3 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2012
I've an ISO of Fedora-16 on this HDD and will burn it to DVD soon. Two nekkid HDD are waiting in my mailbox. Buh bye M$ and Windoze. The time has come. Good people ought to be armed as they will, with wits and Guns and the Truth.
3432682
3 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2012
MS had $20 billion in quarterly sales Oct-Dec 2011. Profit was $6.6 billion. The Windows product division had revenue of almost $5 billion. Handheld products are fine, nice toys for killing time and making phone calls. The PC has its place, and workstations, and servers - most driven by Windows.
Kinedryl
5 / 5 (2) Feb 28, 2012
The more the handheld products will become closer in their hardware capabilities to the PC, the better chance for Microsoft exists here. In addition, there is strong need for integration of smartphones with small business servers and desktop applications: many people want to work at home and companies even support them in it because of cost of travelling for work and many other fees. As a common employee you'll never work with mobile platform only at work because of ergonomy of PC: the work with PC and desktop applications is simply more efficient. Microsoft has already generated infrastructure for it, because he oriented its development to the small business servers and enterprise applications in recent years.
Deesky
3.6 / 5 (9) Feb 28, 2012
linux users will grow with time.

I've been hearing this for over twenty years. It simply won't happen - it will never have mass-market appeal.
migbasher
5 / 5 (2) Feb 28, 2012
linux users will grow with time.

I've been hearing this for over twenty years. It simply won't happen - it will never have mass-market appeal.


Android is a "Linux OS".

Mac OS is a BSD Unix port with a very robust GUI.

I get what your saying though, Debian/Ubuntu ect... will never come close to apple/MS.
Deesky
3.3 / 5 (7) Feb 28, 2012
Android is a "Linux OS".

Mac OS is a BSD Unix port with a very robust GUI.

Yes, but the difference is in both of those cases the end product is controlled and overseen by a single, highly focused and successful organization.

The unix/linux worlds are too fragmented, unfocused, and in many cases sloppy with poor usability and inconsistent user interfaces (if they bother with them and not rely on the command line). And you can't have that in the mass market. It's fine for geeks.

Vendicar_Decarian
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
Unix/Linux is the never ready for prime time OS.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.4 / 5 (38) Feb 28, 2012
Apple is a toy company. It makes adult game boy systems.

The iphone fad will soon be over, as will the tablet fad.

Then Apple will branch out into Linux powered vibrators and yuppy butt plugs.

Deathclock
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 28, 2012
Lots of dumb in here...

Windows has improved with every iteration. Windows 7 is the most stable and feature rich operating system in existence. It's as if most of you think the totality of an operating system is the GUI or something... the GUI is trivial, the important parts of the OS are the things you DON'T see.

The fact that most people criticize windows for using your memory, the memory you paid for, the memory that cannot benefit you if it is not being used, is enough to tell me that most people are completely ignorant the role of the operating system beyond the graphical user interface. The majority of complaints I hear about windows actually have nothing to do with Windows but instead are regarding third party software or hardware... The second most frequent complaints I hear are user error or misunderstanding.

My Credentials:
MS in Computer Science from CMU
Professional software/firmware engineer w/ 7 years exp.

Linux is great, Windows 7 is better.
Green_Dragon
4 / 5 (1) Feb 28, 2012
Could be wrong but I think this article is biting into the "post-pc" buzz. I think its more of a technology convergence happening, the divide between netbooks/low-end laptops and "mobile devices" is growing smaller.
Deathclock
1.8 / 5 (4) Feb 28, 2012
Could be wrong but I think this article is biting into the "post-pc" buzz. I think its more of a technology convergence happening, the divide between netbooks/low-end laptops and "mobile devices" is growing smaller.


That divide is primarily based on screen size, and it will exist until flexible "roll up" screens are introduced...
Vendicar_Decarian
not rated yet Feb 28, 2012
Roll up screens are a no go.

Direct projection into the eye is what is needed, and at resolutions higher than 640 x 400.
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Feb 29, 2012
Linux is great, Windows 7 is better.

I LOL'ed.
- Linux is as much limited as the person who uses it, add in the lists of potential developers and the possibilities are endless.
- Windows 7 is as much limited as Microsoft develops it to be.

- Linux is not an OS it is a kernel. The OS is GNU running on the Linux kernel.
- Windows will never reach the security ratings that some Linux distros have.
- The KDE desktop user experience is much higher than any windows desktop experience(with windows 7 you can not even change the window manager i read somewhere)
- There is a reason servers and super computers use Linux. Most servers that are windows are in fact ran in virtual environments that run on Linux.
- Linux is used more than Windows.
- Too lazy to post more.

Computer Science my ass, you are a dimwit.
Vendicar_Decarian
0.2 / 5 (36) Feb 29, 2012
"There is a reason servers and super computers use Linux. " - Kaas

Ya. It is free. And since the source code is available, it can be modified.

Linux has come a long way over the last 20 years from holding 2% of the desktop market to today holding 2% of the desktop market.

On the other hand it has done a wonderful job of killing off Unix as the OS of choice for supercomputers.

But since Linux is just a pirated copy of Unix, I fail to see the distinction.

Vendicar_Decarian
0.1 / 5 (35) Feb 29, 2012
"Linux is used more than Windows." - Kaas

Absolutely. It is the OS of choice among watch makers and the manufacturers of Microwave ovens and electronic door locks.

zaxxon451
1 / 5 (1) Feb 29, 2012
Windows has improved with every iteration. Windows 7 is the most stable and feature rich operating system in existence. It's as if most of you think the totality of an operating system is the GUI or something... the GUI is trivial, the important parts of the OS are the things you DON'T see.

Improved with every iteration?? lol Enjoy your Windows 8. Hopefully you're not running anything Microsoft finds objectionable. All your computer belong to us!
baudrunner
1 / 5 (1) Feb 29, 2012
I think MS is going to fail miserably in the tablet department. That is because not a single Windows OS has been bug free, which means auto updates and transparent bug patches not to mention security fixes. All those compromise computer performance but for a PC connected to the internet the issue is not as serious as it would be for a mobile device.

If MS intends to include auto updates and bug fixes in their tablet PC's then the iPad is beginning to look more favorable already, since the essence of the mobile device user experience is speed, speed, and more speed and not compromises.

It is not important for MS to enter the tablet market and they should stay away from it so as not to disappoint its users.
Deathclock
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 29, 2012
Improved with every iteration?? lol Enjoy your Windows 8. Hopefully you're not running anything Microsoft finds objectionable. All your computer belong to us!


Do you realize how many times I have heard this about how many different pieces of software? The fact is most major OS's probably have this ability, but it is also a fact that it will NEVER be used. I have heard this same fear-mongering bullshit about both IOS AND android, that they can intentionally "brick" your device if you jailbreak/root it... it doesn't happen, this would be corporate suicide.

Scare tactics and the people who are afraid of them, on the next episode of the "Physorg Loony Bin"
Deathclock
1.8 / 5 (5) Feb 29, 2012
- Linux is as much limited as the person who uses it, add in the lists of potential developers and the possibilities are endless.


Not one of those "potential developers" can make a front end that more than 2% of the PC market can stomach to use on a regular basis...

- Linux is not an OS it is a kernel. The OS is GNU running on the Linux kernel.


Like I said, most people think the OS is only the GUI... the kernel is the OS, dipshit...

- The KDE desktop user experience is much higher than any windows desktop experience


No... that's why practically no one uses it in comparison to windows 7...

(with windows 7 you can not even change the window manager i read somewhere)


False, I have replaced the shell in W7 personally.

- There is a reason servers and super computers use Linux.


It's open source and free...

- Linux is used more than Windows.


Windows is a DESKTOP OS, windows is used by far more than linux as a desktop OS.
Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Feb 29, 2012
Computer Science my ass, you are a dimwit.


I'm at work right now, want to see what I do? I could provide the firmware code I wrote that processes an NTSC video signal in software at 30hz by monitoring horizontal and vertical sync signals on some GPIO pins for timing and reads the data from an external ADC into our Texas Instruments TMS320F2812 DSP, which then scales the input to a 256 color palette and streams the pixel data to our Epson S1D13706 display controller for display on our OSD 35GN827A TFT LCD...

Or I could show you the code that handles user initiated firmware upgrades which requires the software to copy itself to RAM, modify it's own code in the processors on-chip flash, and then intelligently transition all stored data in the external dataflash chips to fit any new data format requirements of the new firmware version before restarting itself by writing a branch instruction to C_INT00 onto the base of it's own stack and then rsetting the PC to the stack at 0x000
antialias_physorg
3 / 5 (2) Feb 29, 2012
While I do hate MS with a passion, I have to agree that Windows 7 is a significant step up from the totally botched Windows Vista.

And for software development (and gaming) there's just no environment that currently beats what can be had on a Windows machine. If that weren't so I'd have switched long ago (and every OS upgrade iteration I do scew around with a dual boot to a current Linux distro which at some time then just garners dust on the hard drive - much to my dismay)
That's just the reality of it for now.

Desktops are sold by usability and user experience. KDE might have a nice user experience, but if I can't have a good development suite on it then it goes the way of the Dodo.

In my opinion Linux is the better system 'under the hood'. But that means nothing if it doesn't supply the things I need.

Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Feb 29, 2012
And for software development (and gaming) there's just no environment that currently beats what can be had on a Windows machine. If that weren't so I'd have switched long ago (and every OS upgrade iteration I do scew around with a dual boot to a current Linux distro which at some time then just garners dust on the hard drive - much to my dismay)


I did the same thing for a long time, the first linux distro I installed was mandrake (I think, maybe redhat) back in the early 90's dual booting with windows 95... and the most recent I've used was Ubuntu 10.04.2... Like you, I periodically install new releases to check them out, but consistently find myself booting into windows 95% of the time... They are a novelty, but in all these years I've never been convinced of their usability advantage...
kaasinees
2 / 5 (4) Feb 29, 2012
Not one of those "potential developers" can make a front end that more than 2% of the PC market can stomach to use on a regular basis...

KDE beats windows interface easily. and there more window managers that are way beyond windows ui.

Like I said, most people think the OS is only the GUI... the kernel is the OS, dipshit...

LMAO. gnu is not an UI. And neither is kernel the OS. I suggest you study a bit.

No... that's why practically no one uses it in comparison to windows 7...

A lot of people use KDE, even on some phones. Most people buy a PC/Laptop they dont care about what is installed or even know what an OS is. Thats the only reason ms exists.

It's open source and free...

Free is no excuse. Why run a licensed windows in virtual environment on Linux? (some clients like to have

I'm at work right now, want to see what I do?

No i don't care, currently i am working on a project for IBM, who gives a shit? You lack basic knowledge
Green_Dragon
5 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
kaas "alot of people use kde" holds no water in comparison to the actual numbers we have of windows as ..im also LOLing @ the irony of IBM. And deathclock i disagree about screensize in terms of netbooks. If you break off the screen,u thats basically tablet size, and I think win 8 will serve nicely here
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
kaas "alot of people use kde" holds no water in comparison to the actual numbers we have of windows as

You can run KDE on windows.
http://3.bp.blogspot.com/-3EHT0aTsWDQ/Te6y2ytL1qI/AAAAAAAAAKo/sYhjDTYi7TY/s1600/ALOT.png
Green_Dragon
5 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
this doesn't mean ppl do it ...
kochevnik
1 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
Linux is great, Windows 7 is better.
If you're a virus or trojan. Winblows is just a decimated UNIX system, cobbled together with CPM code Gates pirated leaving the true author to die broke. Winblows7 just locks up on my machines inexplicably, and the video drive crashes about every eight youtube plays. Strictly garbage for people who can't handle a real OS.
Like I said, most people think the OS is only the GUI... the kernel is the OS, dipshit..
You hit the key reason why windows is garbage.
Deathclock
1.8 / 5 (5) Mar 01, 2012
KDE beats windows interface easily. and there more window managers that are way beyond windows ui.


According to you, I disagree. Very few people use KDE compared to windows explorer shell, far less than 1%.

LMAO. gnu is not an UI. And neither is kernel the OS. I suggest you study a bit.


The fuck? I never said gnu is a UI... nice strawman. The kernel is of course a component of the OS, but it is the MAIN component of the OS... Again, I am sure you only consider the GUI when thinking of the OS.

A lot of people use KDE, even on some phones.

No, you can't even express it as a percentage when compared to the number of people using windows, it's far less than 1%.

Free is no excuse. Why run a licensed windows in virtual environment on Linux?


Because they're linux fanboys who STILL need to use windows, that's the irony of it!
Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
My daily use PC with windows 7 that sees heavy gaming and digital content creation use has an uptime of over 7 months. I have never had a virus, only had malware a handful of times in the 15 or so years I've been using PC's. Windows 7 is the most stable OS I have ever used. It's not my fault you retards don't know how to properly configure a windows desktop.

I also have the most recent version of Ubuntu installed and every time I've used it it ended in a crash or some other problem requiring a restart. All linux varieties I've tried are shit compared to windows 7, the problem is poor college students like it because it's free so they have to defend it to the death in order to feel better about not being able to afford the best desktop OS.

Linux has it's place, and that place is in the sciences (super computers), servers, and embedded products. It is simply not a good desktop OS for home use. I would absolutely run it on my server, and did when I had one.
Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
AA said it best, in case you missed it:

"And for software development (and gaming) there's just no environment that currently beats what can be had on a Windows machine. If that weren't so I'd have switched long ago (and every OS upgrade iteration I do scew around with a dual boot to a current Linux distro which at some time then just garners dust on the hard drive - much to my dismay)
That's just the reality of it for now."
Green_Dragon
5 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
Totally agree Deathclock. Although I never had such a bad experience with Ubuntu or MacOSx86 on my lil amd machine...it's not just the OS it's the users as well. Windows' bad rep partly comes from its ubiquity leading it to be the most exposed to the computer illiterate.
Deathclock
1.8 / 5 (5) Mar 01, 2012
Exactly. If the roles were reversed we would see the common PC users having far more difficulty using the *nixes than we do using windows. Linux's weakness is also it's greatest strength: it's relative obscurity outside of the technical fields.
Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Mar 01, 2012
Okay linux fans, point me to a download of the BEST example of a linux distribution for a general use desktop PC use and I will install it and use it for a week and get back to you, deal?

I was looking for something using the newest version of KDE, and was going to get kubuntu, but I figure I'd ask you linux "experts" first.
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Mar 02, 2012
According to you, I disagree. Very few people use KDE compared to windows explorer shell, far less than 1%.

So what? Microsoft has forced a monopoly of OS usage a long time ago. There is a reason why Europe has sanctioned M$ a while ago. They even sabotaged DSDT tables willingly in an effort to sabotage Linux, some laptop DSDT's are still dysfunctional and require a custom DSDT file.

but it is the MAIN component of the OS... Again, I am sure you only consider the GUI when thinking of the OS.

No its not, a kernel is useless if you cant interface it. That is the glib layer, then you have the programs that run on top of that.

Because they're linux fanboys who STILL need to use windows, that's the irony of it!

Eh wrong answer, i will tell you again, because that is what some clients ask of the data centers. Windows is horrible in virtualization. Linux can actually switch from kernel to kernel, i wanna see windows do that.
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Mar 02, 2012
It's not my fault you retards don't know how to properly configure a windows desktop.


I also have the most recent version of Ubuntu installed and every time I've used it it ended in a crash or some other problem requiring a restart.


Lol, hypocrite.

It is simply not a good desktop OS for home use.

Works fine here.

Linux's weakness is also it's greatest strength: it's relative obscurity outside of the technical fields.

Pure nonsense, there is nothing obscure about Linux.

http://en.wikiped...bscurity

but I figure I'd ask you linux "experts" first.

If you want the true Linux experience, get Gentoo.
If you want something easy, ubuntu, mint, vector, arch, opensuse, fedora, centos, debian.

opensuse.org/Portal:KDE

maybe you can try that one.
kaasinees
1 / 5 (1) Mar 02, 2012
Exactly. If the roles were reversed we would see the common PC users having far more difficulty using the *nixes than we do using windows.


Actually i had to help a girl, because she had issues with her laptop (it was an old laptop though). I could not bother re installing windows on her laptop so i booted a live USB with Ubuntu and showed her what it can do. So i ended up salvaging her personal files and installing Ubuntu netbook remix.

She was pleased. And she thought it actually refreshed her laptop. Plus she could find all the Linux apps she needed that replaced her window apps, and more.
Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Mar 02, 2012
Linux's weakness is also it's greatest strength: it's relative obscurity outside of the technical fields.

Pure nonsense, there is nothing obscure about Linux.


I bet the name "windows" is recognized by no fewer than 100 times more people than the name "linux". If I went to talk to just about any of my family members about computers and I mentioned linux they would say "what the hell is linux?". That is what I mean by obscurity, normal every day people don't use it and don't know anything about it. It's not security through obscurity, it's idiot-proof due to a lack of use by idiots.

If you want the true Linux experience, get Gentoo.
If you want something easy, ubuntu, mint, vector, arch, opensuse, fedora, centos, debian.

opensuse.org/Portal:KDE

maybe you can try that one.


Can any of these be installed from within windows 7 or from a bootable flash drive? I haven't used floppies or optical drives in ages.
Deathclock
1 / 5 (1) Mar 02, 2012
Actually i had to help a girl, because she had issues with her laptop (it was an old laptop though). I could not bother re installing windows on her laptop so i booted a live USB with Ubuntu and showed her what it can do. So i ended up salvaging her personal files and installing Ubuntu netbook remix.

She was pleased. And she thought it actually refreshed her laptop. Plus she could find all the Linux apps she needed that replaced her window apps, and more.


Did you bang her? When I was in highschool I built a computer for this girl (I was well known for building people awesome computers for cheap and did it for many people), she liked the girly designer case because back then all cases were horizontal beige boxes and PC customization had JUST started... she couldn't pay so we worked out an "arrangement" if you get my drift... ahhh those were the days...
sherriffwoody
not rated yet Mar 03, 2012
Winblows7 just locks up on my machines inexplicably, and the video drive crashes about every eight youtube plays. Strictly garbage for people who can't handle a real OS.

Thats your hardware then, I have 3 PC's running windows 7 and our business has approx 30 windows 7 machines and we rarely get problems. In fact the few using macs have more problems than the windows 7 users. Its another case of people blaming windows 7 problems on windows when in all reality its the hardware.
sherriffwoody
not rated yet Mar 03, 2012
In fact I have two senior people within the organisation moving back to windows 7 and 8 when it gets to our shores as they find the macs lack the adaptability, expandability, applications availability, office tools ease of use that windows has. One user spends most of his time logged in to XP on his Macs Virtual machine and has decided whats the point, the VM slows things down, and has decided he'd be better off with windows. And this guy is an avid apple man. I've been trialling windows 8 and admit the switching between metro and desktop feels a little disjointed, but its still only beta and there'll be a few updates before release so I'm looking forward to seeing how it develops. It'll determine whether I stay win 7 or go 8
Eikka
not rated yet Mar 04, 2012
Winblows7 just locks up on my machines inexplicably, and the video drive crashes about every eight youtube plays. Strictly garbage for people who can't handle a real OS.

Thats your hardware then, I have 3 PC's running windows 7 and our business has approx 30 windows 7 machines and we rarely get problems. In fact the few using macs have more problems than the windows 7 users. Its another case of people blaming windows 7 problems on windows when in all reality its the hardware.


The random youtube crashing points to a video card problem. I had the same issue on an AMD Radeon card. It would just lock up; the screen freezes and nothing moves. The reason was that the hardware acceleration in Flash that Youtube uses would cause the hardware to lock up when viewing h.264 encoded videos. If the video was in HD, you could just flip a coin to predict if it crashes.

Solution: disable HW acceleration in Flash.
Au-Pu
not rated yet Mar 04, 2012
Almost all OS's are flawed. If a motor vehicle, refrigerator, oven or TV were to be sold in as flawed a state they would all be recalled. But the docile IT market they sell into tries to find ways around the flaws. Microsoft's problem is that their system is never re written. Rather they continue to develop it via add-ons.
The result is that flaws are not removed but rather patched and the size of the system just grows and grows.
I have a very old computer that ran on MSDOS it is an old 480 (if I tried to load a modern windows system on it there is simply not enough memory)I also have a more recent one that is alegedly 700 times faster. Yet my response time and output times have not materially altered.
So we are (a) being deluded by the hardware and software companies and (b) we are deluding ourselves.
One day reality will bite.
Let us hope that day is soon.
Eikka
5 / 5 (2) Mar 04, 2012
In my opinion Linux is the better system 'under the hood'. But that means nothing if it doesn't supply the things I need.


That is, until you actually look at what's under the hood.

For example, the graphics card driver system is absolute garbage. It's bubble gum on top of bubble gum, and the driver vendors like nVidia actually replace half of the stack with their own when you install their proprietary drivers. AMD still tries to play nice and use what X.org gives them, which leads to horrible performance and compatibility issues. Aka. why Linux users mock AMD for making bad drivers, as if it was their fault.

But of course, that's not Linux's problem, right, that's X.org's problem because Linux is just the kernel. Linux itself is just fine when you don't use the X system for displaying a user interface. The best fuel pump in the world has no meaning if the engine built around it is garbage, and the car built around the engine is a creaky rustbucket.

Eikka
not rated yet Mar 04, 2012
I also have a more recent one that is alegedly 700 times faster. Yet my response time and output times have not materially altered.


That's because the actual usability bottleneck is not in the processor speed, but I/O - hard drive speed, and the amount of data that it has to process.

You wouldn't even dream of opening up a JPEG file from a modern digital camera with your old 486 because it simply hasn't got the RAM to fit the file in. It would probably take an hour to decode the compression.
I_Dont_Have_A_Name
not rated yet Mar 04, 2012
I've used windows 8 a bit. It's no vista, and yes it's a lot better than Win7. I'm actually excited for it, and I switch boots between 7 and Linux. I'm not saying it's going to be anything revolutionary, however, I'd estimate by the time Windows10 rolls around we'll be looking at our laptops like they're from the 70's.
Windows 8 UNLOCKS most of the "new security" (I.E have to MANUALLY UNLOCK ALL THE THINGS!) also Win8 adds a whole bunch of new display features (taskmanager for example is color coded and such) small little things, like keyboard shortcuts, not to mention it's about twice as fast as vista and .5x Windows 7.
I can't rate it out of 10 this early, but as of now I'd give it a 8/10
Green_Dragon
not rated yet Mar 15, 2012
Can any of these be installed from within windows 7 or from a bootable flash drive? I haven't used floppies or optical drives in ages.


Sure can! If you want to install within windows try out wubi. I like kubuntu, but I wanted to try out openSUSE as well..have fun, KDE has some nice eye candy :)

sheriff i agre it is disjointed... tried it out in a vm and saw nothing particularly fun on the desktop side, but my guess is they want these devices to converge, and figured if they don't do it now it will only be harder later on.