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There have been a lot of weird stories going around about Microsoft, the last week or so... First of all, Microsoft has started, or is ...

  1. #1
    Yeah, I know a LOT! Vin DSL's Avatar
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    Thumbs down Has Microsoft Flipped Out?

    There have been a lot of weird stories going around about Microsoft, the last week or so...

    First of all, Microsoft has started, or is thinking about starting, a policy of asking ppl to enter their product key when doing a 'Windows Update.'

    http://www.accountingweb.com/cgi-bin...20%25e,%20%25Y

    Second of all, they are NOT going to support Internet Explorer any longer, expect for users running Windows XP SP2.

    http://www.crmbuyer.com/story/Micros...ers-36892.html

    Yeah, so what, right? You'll get by...

    Well, I guess the reason this is hitting home is because my boss asked me to fix his computer. He wants me to buy and install a new OS and gave me 100 bones to get the process started. He prefers Win98 Second Edition, 'cause that's what he's used to, plus that's what his wife runs...

    I told him Win98 SE costs 40 bucks, but I can get W2K Pro for 50. So, I asked him which version of Windows he wants, and he said, "I'll leave that up to you." I told him that his machine is too old to run XP, so W2K Pro would probably be the way to go...

    Now, the turds at Microsoft aren't going to support Internet Explorer for W2K any longer, so I cannot buy and install it on his machine - or Win98SE - or any other version of Windows. And, he isn't savvy enough to be able to update/upgrade Firefox, or whatever.

    Gawd! What a mess! Microsoft has got to be out of their minds. I guess I'll tell my boss he's on his own. That should go over well... NOT!

    Is it just me, or what??? It seems like Microsoft is throwing 100 million+ users to the wind, legitimate or not. Are things really that bad at Microsoft? Hell, they haven't released a new OS in over 2 years, so I guess so!

    It looks like they're in the business of selling recycled crap now...

    My personal opinion is this is gonna rip it for them. Or, are ppl really gonna go out and buy new computers with XP SP2 (hello?!?!?) so they can get IE updates?

    Weird! [/rant]
    Last edited by Vin DSL; 09-25-2004 at 02:06 AM.
    DISCLAIMER Any resemblance between the views expressed above and those of the owners and operators of this system is purely coincidental. Any resemblance between these views and my own are non-deterministic. The existence of Vin DSL is questionable. The existence of views in the absence of anyone to hold them is problematic. The existence of the reader is left as an exercise in the second-order coefficient.

    No Guts, No Story! VinDSL 2010

  2. #2
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    I agree. It's terrible they won't release an updated IE with all the security enhancements for Windows 2000, Windows 98 users. There are millions of PC users, even many business users that use those operating systems.

  3. #3
    Yeah, I know a LOT! Vin DSL's Avatar
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    Hahahahaha! Here's more proof...

    A Microsoft bot tried to hack my site today - UNION exploit - (no kidding!).
    Code:
    Date: 	2004.09.25 15:01:19
    Ip: 	207.46.98.138
    Banned User:	Anonymous
    Expire Date:	NO
    Information:	User Anonymous has been automatically banned on your site Lenon.com Cause: Breach attempt on file admin.php or attempted to use SQL exploit
    Url String: /modules.php?name=web_links&l_op=viewlink&cid=2 UNI0N select counter, aid, pwd from nuke_authors --
    Url: www.lenon.com
    Banned Ip is 207.46.98.138
    User Agent: msnbot/0.3 (+http://search.msn.com/msnbot.htm)
    --------	--------
    DISCLAIMER Any resemblance between the views expressed above and those of the owners and operators of this system is purely coincidental. Any resemblance between these views and my own are non-deterministic. The existence of Vin DSL is questionable. The existence of views in the absence of anyone to hold them is problematic. The existence of the reader is left as an exercise in the second-order coefficient.

    No Guts, No Story! VinDSL 2010

  4. #4
    || $name ne 'R.Stiltskin'
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    That is curious. The IP is in the MS IP class. Any chance someone is running a rogue script on a MS server?

    Yep, MS's move to practically eliminate support for "old" OSes is going to infuriate may people. Will it be enough to expedite the transition from MS to another OS? In a word, hardly. Everyone will rant and rave and then proceed to fork over the extra dues for an upgrade and continue down MSWay Road without looking left or right for another route.

    Maybe that is the most economical thing to do short term and for the individual, necessary. But businesses will continue to wage the internal battle: to MS or not to MS... We are very far away from any sort of tipping point though Apache (not an OS but a superior server) sure is doing one heck of a job smiting the giant. And it looks like Mozilla and Opera are starting to get some extra traction these days.

    I guess under the guise of security, MS will force everyone to upgrade their OS so that they can force the MS browser on every system and make it "inseparable". For me, it wasn't the OS that forced me to use other OSes, it was that damn IE and all of its faults that were tying in to the OS. From a technical POV, that seems to be a bad idea, but from a marketing/monopoly position, it seems very clever.

    One thing is for sure... the Mozilla/Opera line of browsers are exceptional and very actively developed. It is simply superior and those that need tweaks to enhance the app more? Check out http://www.mozdev.org/ . More toys than you can shake a stick at...

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    What did you expect? I guess they should be happy that plans for world domination are running on schedule.

    W2K is a solid OS. They can't give people a good reason to shell out a ****load of money for the new version, so the only thing left to do is to turn off the lights on them. Guess what; in the near future they won't have a good reason for folks to abandon XP, at which point they will do the same.

    Face the facts; either you keep on sending them money, or simply move on to a new OS. Do your boss a favor; pick up a CD-based Linux distro, the kind you can run from a CD without having to install it on a hard drive. See if you boss likes it.

    - DN

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    Yeah, I know a LOT! Vin DSL's Avatar
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    Hahahaha! OMG! Linux?

    I just introduced him to 'downloading'. He didn't know how to download a program, where to store it once it was downloaded, or what to do with it once he had it. This newfound knowledge was like a major turning point in his life!

    Then again, maybe XP is right up his alley...
    DISCLAIMER Any resemblance between the views expressed above and those of the owners and operators of this system is purely coincidental. Any resemblance between these views and my own are non-deterministic. The existence of Vin DSL is questionable. The existence of views in the absence of anyone to hold them is problematic. The existence of the reader is left as an exercise in the second-order coefficient.

    No Guts, No Story! VinDSL 2010

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vin DSL
    Hahahaha! OMG! Linux?

    I just introduced him to 'downloading'. He didn't know how to download a program, where to store it once it was downloaded, or what to do with it once he had it. This newfound knowledge was like a major turning point in his life!

    Then again, maybe XP is right up his alley...
    But that's the misconception. If the person has a guardian angel to check on things, Linux is better on newbies than MikieSoft.

    On my last visit to my folks at home I rebuilt and "upgraded" their virus infected machine. I just forgot to tell them that I replaced Windows ME with RedHat 9 and a Ximian desktop.

    Three months later somebody was complimenting them on how nice everything looked. Finally six months later somebody told them that they were running Linux

    Heck, look at what their Linux looks like:

    http://www.novell.com/products/desktop/screenshots.html


    - DN

  8. #8
    Old Hillbilly Connie's Avatar
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    I have been seeing information for at least a year that MS was going to discontinue support for 98. Haven't seen anything about W2000.

    I wasn't supprised. Most manufactures develop new products and stop suppoting old products after 5 years or so. The time may vary based on manufacuter and the product but they all do that.

    Why should MS be any different? I recently tried to find new seat covers for my Chevy truck which is 11 years old. In all the US there were only 2 dealers that had the seat covers. They were in the wrong material and color. My alternative is to pay $2000.00 for custom seat covers for what I should be able to buy from Chevy for about $400.00.

    Just so you know I have seats that you can't buy $40.00 replacements for at WalMart.

    I can't buy what I need from a Chevy dealer at a reasonable price because Chevy no longer makes the seat covers.

    All manufactures update and discontinue products all the time. If you can get a replacement that is older than 6 years old you are lucky.

    A soft ware example. I use Quick books for accounting. You don't have to update to new software but every few years they drop any kind of support for a certain program. At that point you either update so you can import your information into the new program or risk loosing all your information. With Quick Books updating is around $400.00 for existing customers.

    A hundred dollar or so update with MS seems cheap to me If you want to use an MS operatiing system.


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    Quote Originally Posted by clssam
    I have been seeing information for at least a year that MS was going to discontinue support for 98. Haven't seen anything about W2000.

    I wasn't supprised. Most manufactures develop new products and stop suppoting old products after 5 years or so. The time may vary based on manufacuter and the product but they all do that.
    That's my main source of grief; the product does not become obsolete, manufacturers artificially make them obsolete in order to make more money.

    Why should MS be any different? I recently tried to find new seat covers for my Chevy truck which is 11 years old. In all the US there were only 2 dealers that had the seat covers. They were in the wrong material and color. My alternative is to pay $2000.00 for custom seat covers for what I should be able to buy from Chevy for about $400.00.

    Just so you know I have seats that you can't buy $40.00 replacements for at WalMart.

    I can't buy what I need from a Chevy dealer at a reasonable price because Chevy no longer makes the seat covers.

    All manufactures update and discontinue products all the time. If you can get a replacement that is older than 6 years old you are lucky.
    And then you have my '66 beetle. For $400 I can buy the entire upholdstery, carpets, and headliner. All that for a 38 years old car. It sounds like you should rethink both your software as well as your car choices

    A soft ware example. I use Quick books for accounting. You don't have to update to new software but every few years they drop any kind of support for a certain program. At that point you either update so you can import your information into the new program or risk loosing all your information. With Quick Books updating is around $400.00 for existing customers.

    A hundred dollar or so update with MS seems cheap to me If you want to use an MS operatiing system.
    It might sound like I'm an open source zealot but in reality I have no problem buying software, nor paying for upgrades. I'm yet to find a product as good as Photoshop in any platform, and that's one expensive puppy. Every year I shell $35~$40 bucks for tax software, and a few hundreds on games (last one being Doom III). Other than that, I rather find an open source way of doing things, than to get conned into giving a vendor more money, just because they feel it is time for me to do so.

    -DN

  10. #10
    Ron
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    Vendors/manufacturers of software have a few issues that cause them to end-of-life software.

    1) To keep up with their customer's demands, they must create new version of their software with new features. Sometimes these new features are not compatible with large sections of code, so a new major version is required. Othertimes the upgrade can be minimal, so a new minor version is created.
    2) Many customers take great care in moving to new releases. If the new features are not ones that are required, there is great reluctance to move to the new version. Some venues require, literally, months of testing before moving to a new version of anything. Even minor upgrades are not installed without vigorous testing.
    3) Adding new features/fixes on top of new features is common. As bugs are found the patches are retrofitted into the old versions as well as the new versions. Sometimes this is not as easy as just copying the code from one line into the other. Often logic changes have to be made to deal with various versions.

    At some point, out of necessity, a vendor must make the decision to stop supporting every old version of software there is. Where they draw that line is influenced by many things, probably including revenue stream from the old product, anticipated revenue from the new release if customers are forced to upgrade, loss of goodwill, the chances that someone forced to upgrade will spend the time testing for a new replacement instead, etc., etc.

    As to the IE issue... a large part of the security upgrades for IE were made to the OS. The OS has a firewall that IE now depends upon, and there's probably more. If they were to make IE Security available to all old versions, they would have to incorporate those upgrades, and that might be a VERY different thing for XP vs Win2K vs Win98/95.

    That said, if M$ had a recurring licensing stream for maintenance that is/was common in the rest of the software world before shrink-wrapping happened, and if they had real competition from anyone, they wouldn't be so quick to EOL products that had 50 million customers still using them.

    On the third hand, they wouldn't have 50 million customers.

    Just my thoughts.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by clssam
    I have been seeing information for at least a year that MS was going to discontinue support for 98. Haven't seen anything about W2000.
    Some one may have confused that with ME , Win2k is the same NT5 as XP , so what works on one , will work on the other.

    Tuxx
    What would Bugs Bunny say

  12. #12
    Yeah, I know a LOT! Vin DSL's Avatar
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    Just so there is no misunderstanding, I'm NOT a Microsoft hater. I've been using their various operating systems since '85, and I've been perfectly happy with Microsoft. Their server software, desktop proggies, and all the rest have always been kinda sucky, but that's a different story.

    Having said that, I've always managed to find better alternatives. In the DOS days, for instance, I ended up using DRDOS on my 'clone' computers. Mozilla always made a better browser, except for a period of time during the late 90's, and so forth. This is NOT to take away from Microsoft. It's just that they are a company that likes to play it safe, and their software is reflective of that attitude.

    I didn't finally make 'the switch' to Windows on my desktop until Win98, and later WinNT4. That's mostly because I was running a dialup BBS and I needed something reliable - an OS that didn't need to be rebooted several times a day. Back then, Windows was a toy - something you played with, every once in a while, to see if you could get it to work. Let me back up a little...

    I started trying Windows when version 1.0 came out. Gawd! It was awful! It was mostly a GUI for MSDOS. Windows wasn't even viable IMHO until version 3. In those days, IBM OS/2 was the way to go. I still have a 386 box running 'Warp' and it works great. However, Win95/98 and WinNT finished all that...

    Anyway, I guess the point is, I've been running MS software (et al) since the day it came out, and I've followed development closely, and it seems that there has been a paradigmatic shift in their business philosophy and marketing practices in the last few weeks. Generally speaking, Microsoft moves at a glacial pace. What I see happening lately doesn't make any sense.

    Now, you can say this 'n' that is the way it has always been, and everyone is the same, but you are wrong. This is NOT business as usual at Microsoft. Something has happened, and I can't put a finger on it, hence this thread. If you think this is 'normal' you've got your head(s) in the sand!

    It seems mostly reactionary. I just can't figure out what 'they' are reacting to. On face value, I would say they are in financial trouble; they're shoring up their (paying) user base, and telling the rest of the Microsoft community, "To hell with you freeloaders. If you want to play, you must pay! Get out your checkbooks... but that's just a hunch.

    Personally, I think a lot of hardcore types are going to say, "FU and your crappy software!" and look elsewhere. That's one of the risks they are running but, moreover, they run the even larger risk of pissing off their paying customers, 'cause they lost their 'product keys' and so forth, and can't upgrade/update, et cetera. However, I'm sure 'they' have considered all this and would rather take 'the risk' than die a slow death from '100 million cuts'.

    In essence, it seems like Microsoft is 'taking off the gloves', so to speak. They've grown a spine. They've taken their balls out of their purse; however you want to put it... I can truthfully say, I've never known Microsoft to do this before. We'll see what happens...
    Last edited by Vin DSL; 10-02-2004 at 07:49 PM.
    DISCLAIMER Any resemblance between the views expressed above and those of the owners and operators of this system is purely coincidental. Any resemblance between these views and my own are non-deterministic. The existence of Vin DSL is questionable. The existence of views in the absence of anyone to hold them is problematic. The existence of the reader is left as an exercise in the second-order coefficient.

    No Guts, No Story! VinDSL 2010

  13. #13
    Loyal Client BigPete's Avatar
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    Simple, Microsoft owns everyone.

    The only problem (and I mean ONLY) with going to an alternative is games. That just about sums it up for me. Just about any other kind of software is available for *NIX or MacOS.

    Microsoft realizes that people dont use Windows because it is a slam dunk piece of software. I compare Windows to a toll road. You pay the toll, not because you want to, but because you have to in order to get where you want to go. I dont use Windows because its the best, I use it because its the only way to play games (most of them anyway).

    If most games (or software, really) only ran on WinXP, Microsoft wouldnt need to stop supporting older versions because we (the users) would stop using the older versions. However, since most games including new ones, will run on older versions of Windows, there isnt much incentive for people to upgrade.

    I'm only using the whole games thing to be more specific, but look at all the software out there. Most of it will run on any version of windows from 98+. Until the move to 64-bit comes along, people are going to be using older versions of Windows unless Microsoft stops supporting them.

  14. #14
    crazy davey flipdoubt's Avatar
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    So that no one worries, rest assured that, no, Microsoft does not have me.

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    All,

    Yes there are good reasons why software must be upgraded. The problem is when companies artificially set their environment so it will get them the most money from their userbase by artificially forcing upgrades. Fact; Microsoft is the dominant force on the user OS market, which let them get away with a lot. A good amount of what they get away with is things that makes no sense, other than from the standpoint that it will A. Lock users on their software, and B. force upgrades whether they are needed or not.

    Integrating the internet browser with the kernel is as dumb as a box of hair; it makes the entire system less stable. Actually it is not dumb your intent is to force people to send you money (AKA upgrade). In that case it is brilliant. Same thing with the firewall. Same thing with just about any other functionality you can think of. On top of that, they 'integrated' everything so tightly, that even if you don't use Explorer, your old system would still be vulnerable because they burried it deep into the OS.

    Bottom line is; Microsoft doesn't modularize because it is easier for them to ask you for a few hundred bucks every few years that way. Integrated software makes systems less stable and less secure, not more.

    - DN

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