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Microsoft

Gates Admits Stripped Down Windows Possible 816

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the well-of-course-it-is dept.
ChristTrekker writes "The Financial Times reports that Bill Gates admitted a stripped-down Windows is possible after all." This kinda contradicts a lot of other stuff he's been saying. There's a few bits in the article worth a read.
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Gates Admits Stripped Down Windows Possible

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  • The Truth (Score:2, Troll)

    by blankmange (571591)
    Finally, BillG blurts out the truth, but before he can take it back (and explain it was gas), it is recorded, filed, and sent into the public domain. Is anyone surprised by this revelation, or is it just more amazing that he acutally admitted it.... Microsoft is slipping....
    • Re:The Truth (Score:5, Interesting)

      by EvilAlien (133134) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:11AM (#3408388) Journal
      I think his major contention would be that it would be bad for Microsoft's business model to strip Windows down. This shouldn't be surprising, since the whole point of the anti-trust litigation is to attack MS's way of doing business!

      Admitting something can be done is redundant. It is technically possible to do almost anything, but that isn't the point. What should and should not be done, or forced upon a company by Tha Man, is the question here. Stripping down Windows may indeed cripple Microsoft and traumatize the computer industry as Microsoft pundits claim. Or it might not. Whichever view is more convincing to a Judge is what matters here, not the almost limitless potential of technology.

  • I wonder... (Score:3, Funny)

    by NOT-2-QUICK (114909) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:03AM (#3408338) Homepage
    I wonder if a stripped down version of the Windows OS would yeild better performance with the decreased overhead of the needless features...

    If so, that would be great...you could then get Microsoft's patented "blue screen of death" in half the time!!! :-)
    • Re:I wonder... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by WowTIP (112922)
      I wonder if a stripped down version of the Windows OS would yeild better performance with the decreased overhead of the needless features...

      In some ways it will, in others it won't. It all depends on how much RAM you have. If you have lots of RAM, you would probably not notice that much of the slowdown the preloading of Internet explorer and such things causes. If you have a less powerful machine, you probably will. The real benefit would be that you won't have to waste disk space having these things installed. Your windows partition could maybe for the first time in some years be less than 1 GB?

      Not that HDs are that expensive these days anyway.

      The real value on the other hand is that IE, WMP, etc. might not be as much "standard components" as they are today, when not integrated into windows any longer. But still, they would probably be bundled on the installation CD and most people would probably install them anyway.

      I wonder if a stripped down version of the Windows OS would yeild better performance with the decreased overhead of the needless features...

      That is a trollish statement. Like Windows or not, my Win2K box has not ever gotten a BSOD and only locked up completely (forcing reboot) once in over a year.
      • Re:I wonder... (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Toraz Chryx (467835)
        "That is a trollish statement. Like Windows or not, my Win2K box has not ever gotten a BSOD and only locked up completely (forcing reboot) once in over a year."

        Except his statement had nothing to do with what you were refuting, he was talking about windows performing better because less gunk was taking up memory/cpu time, you were talking about stability.

        totally different issues :)
  • Hmm.... interesting. (Score:3, Interesting)

    by carnellm (256788) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:04AM (#3408343) Homepage
    And why don't perjury charges apply here?
    • by Kierthos (225954)
      Probably because he can qualify his statements with "Yes, a stripped down Windows is now possible, as I have had my elite team of coders working on it for weeks, and now that they've carefully removed all the bloat...."

      Kierthos
    • by linzeal (197905)
      He is a billionaire they have a seperate constitution, justice system, and security force. I mean come on, 99% of all celebrities are doing probation on a lesser charge than what the state could of prosecuted them with. If you aren't somehow connected to the media or money kiss your ass good bye when you pull shit like this though.
    • And why don't perjury charges apply here?

      Or at least contempt of court. A few days in the slammer might give Billg a wider perspective.
      • It'd give him a wider something. [insert traumatic goat sex guy image here]

    • Probably because he's reiterating what he's been saying all along; of *course* it's possible, but it's neither feasable nor commercially viable. Just like it's *possible* to sell a 'modular car' it would be insane.
      • by pubjames (468013) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:10AM (#3408775)
        Just like it's *possible* to sell a 'modular car' it would be insane

        Cars are to some extent modular.

        If I buy a Volvo car, I can put on tyres from another manufacturer, or the windscreen, oil filter, spark plugs, paint, in fact you could change the engine if you wanted. I am not forced to use Volvo tyres, or Volvo spark plugs, paint etc.

        I have read that in the early days of the industrial revolution, manufacturers used to do things like vary the treading and size of bolts so that it forced you to buy components from them - you couldn't bolt on parts from other manufacturers because their bolts wouldn't match the threads. Eventually, people realised that this was crazy and these days we have standards for virtually everything in engineering.

        Software is still at a more primitive stage. Bill Gates just doesn't want all this bolts to be standardized.
        • by gi-tux (309771)
          Also companies have (in the past and present) designed screws, nuts, and bolts to use odd shaped heads or slots (philips head screws, torx, etc) so that you had to buy the tools from them. Now is this much different from Microsoft either?
          Bill not only wants you to buy the nuts and bolts (word and excel) from him, but the tools also (VB.net, C#.net, etc). If he can get everything sufficently tied together, then you will have no option to install those non-Microsoft wipers on you Microsoft Modular Car (get it MMC). It will be modular, as long as it is a Microsoft module that you are installing. You can't possibly replace the speedometer with the OSX version that looks nicer, nor the fuel injectors with the Linux version that gets better fuel economy, nor can you replace the tires with Java tires so that you can run on roads built by Sun Microsystems, IBM, and many others.

          Do you trust your entire life to the folks that want to know what you watch on TV (remember Web-TV)?
          • Actually, most of these companies don't profit from selling the tools to match their odd fastener heads, and I don't know of any case where a car manufacturer owns the patents for fasteners and won't license anyone else to make drivers for them. (Of course, keeping the fastener design secret is out of the question -- any machinist can measure it and duplicate it, so if the inventor wants to keep control he'd better patent it, measurements and all. This is quite unlike unpublished and copyright-protected interfaces in software.)

            The odd heads are there for two reasons -- they work better with powered screwdrivers on the assembly line than philips or slotted heads, and they reduce the tendency of customers to tamper with stuff they don't understand. But it is no problem at all for professional mechanics to get the tools (the Stanley Tools man comes around to auto shops once a week in a van with tools for just about everything), and the rest of us just have to put in a little more effort to find the thing in the McMaster-Carr catalog.

            Contrast that with trying to find out how to interface to a Microsoft product...
        • by SuiteSisterMary (123932) <slebrun@NOSPam.gmail.com> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:35AM (#3408934) Journal
          But the car itself IS sold to you with all the bits. It comes with engine, tires, radio, A/C, transmission, seats, gauges, and so on. You're welcome to strip them out yourself, but the car company certainly won't support that, unless you decide to upgrade with other company parts.
          • by (void*) (113680)
            The dealer is the OEM. You can cut lots of deals with the car dealers. You can ask for a BOSE speakers, without the radio. YOu can request leather seats without heated ones, etc. And if the dealer refuses to negotiate, you have a choice of dealers.


            Who are the dealers in the PC world? Dell, Gateway, HP. In each case, MS mandates that they cannnot make such deals with their customers. There was a time when Dell offered Netscape instead of IE. IBM offers Norton Antivirus, not McAffee scan. But if you don't like it, nothing prevents you from doing so. But to replace IE is to reduce the functionality of explorer.exe!

          • by pmz (462998) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @11:33AM (#3409306) Homepage
            However, there is so much competition in the auto industry that the quality of new cars has improved greatly over the years. People shopping for cars, now, have a pretty level field to choose from, and they bicker over prices and features. In today's auto market, the consumer has the edge over the salespeople ("You won't come down in price?? Well, I just go across the street.").

            How many models of the standard 4-door family mover are there in the U.S.A.: GM has a few, Ford has a few, Chrysler has a few, Toyota, Nissan, Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Daewoo, VW, BMW, Volvo, Saab, Mercedes, and more I can't remember.

            How many models of consumer-grade operating systems are there: Microsoft has a few (>85% share), Apple has a couple (<15% share) , ... hmmm, that is about it.

            Consumer to Microsoft salesperson, "You won't come down in price?? Well, okay, who do I make the check out to?"

            Also, no one is forced to buy a new car. A technically-inclined person can go scavenge a junk yard and rebuild a classic. The laws work so that he can get by with older technology, too, with just a few restrictions.

            The car-road interface has been standardized well enough, that we don't have to worry about suddenly having to drive on rails or fly on tethers. In software, however, Microsoft wants to own the roads and dictate that only Microsoft tires can achieve traction on those roads. They want us to be under their control.
            • Yes, you can choose what kind of cars you want, where to buy cars, what color you want it and low and behold when you get it home it is still a car no matter who built it.

              But *I* for one don't want the computer industry regulated like the car industry. I don't want to be 16 to drive, i don't want my computer prices to jump up because the government body assuming responsibility/liability is having to do crash testing.

              The computer industry has excelled beyond anyones imagination. With or without microsoft THINGS HAPPEN.

              I don't want DellXP, CompaqXP, MSXP, GatewayXP. I don't want a stripped down car either. I don't want to go to the VW dealer and tell them i want a small block ford engine instead of a vw motor. What is the point?

              It isn't about stealing a product and emulating it either. Windows *IS* microsoft's product.

              It Isn't a matter of "what choice of windows do you want today" but "What choice of operating system do you want today"

              Don't let this choice BS get to your head. The government can't dictate our choice just like microsoft can't, so i don't know what the big deal about stripping down windows is. Windows is CHEAP, Affordable and RUNS JUST FINE. I don't know about you but i HATED The days when i had to buy Stacker for 99 bucks, QEMM for 69.00 bucks and DESQview for 199 bucks just to run my Wildcat BBS program that cost 399 bucks. I'm pretty happy that a 199.00 product does all of that and more, and i'm SORRY, but that *IS* innovation.

              Just like my 500.00 coffee table that lifts up with ease and turns into a desk. Its just an ordinary coffee table that costs alot to everyone else but me who knows the innovation behind it, and yes, adding fatures, functionality, dependablility and useability IS INNOVATION.

              This isn't about Microsoft Owning the roads, they *DO* own them. You can CHOOSE YOUR OWN GODDAMN ROAD THOUGH. If you don't like taking the toll road then take the free country road.

              Just remember you do get what you pay for, and you don't get something for nothing.
              • by pmz (462998) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @01:57PM (#3410234) Homepage
                Yes, you can choose what kind of cars you want, where to buy cars, what color you want it and low and behold when you get it home it is still a car no matter who built it.

                With Microsoft, they choose what you want and what color it comes in.

                But *I* for one don't want the computer industry regulated like the car industry.

                This isn't about regulation. It's about competition.

                I don't want DellXP, CompaqXP, MSXP, GatewayXP. I don't want a stripped down car either.

                Many other people do. Having options makes some decisions harder, but our lives are better as a result. I'd rather have 10 models to choose from than one. Let the companies scramble for my business, and let me put them in their place. This is what happens when the free market is in good health.

                Don't let this choice BS get to your head.

                Without choice, is my life worth living?

                Windows is CHEAP, Affordable and RUNS JUST FINE.

                Windows is not cheap, and it is a kludge. It does not run fine. In fact, it's behavior is so inconsistent sometimes that I want to punch my monitor.

                You can CHOOSE YOUR OWN GODDAMN ROAD THOUGH.

                Not when all roads lead to Microsoft.

                Just remember you do get what you pay for, and you don't get something for nothing.

                When what I'm buying is selling for its true market value. Operating systems used to be expensive, but the market has spoken. Other companies have accepted this fact. For example, I can get Solaris, RedHat Linux, and OpenBSD media for less than $50 (one of these used to be really expensive).
            • You're pretty much correct, but the primary difference I see between computers and automobiles that cars are pretty much a stand-alone purchase. The infrastructure (roads, etc.) are already standardized and in place, so you buy your car and you're done.

              With computers, we've got the infrastructure standardized (I refer to the Internet and TCP/IP here.), but after you buy your computer - you not only select an operating system, but also all the software that runs on top of it.

              I think people often forget that only 10 years ago or so, we had all sorts of operating system choices - but people did nothing but complain about it, and demanded standardization. (That game is really cool on your Commodore 64 computer, but it won't run on my Atari, or on my buddy's TRS-80.) Back then, your computer and your operating system were truly tied together, since the OS was usually in firmware.

              When IBM compatibles started gaining popularity (with MS-DOS as the operating system standard), it only really happened after they offered enough compelling software titles to pull everyone else away from their non PC compatible systems.

              In other words, the software applications/games/utilities themselves drive people's operating system (and therefore, computer) buying decisions. Since Microsoft lucked into owning the OS (DOS) that ended up rising to the top back then, they've had the head start and the money to hang onto that position ever since.

              New companies could write consumer operating systems left and right, but it won't make any difference unless compelling new software is developed that only runs on those new operating systems. Right now, except for Linux people who attempt this largely because they just want to do something to force Microsoft out, there's not much of a business reason to develop code for anything but Microsoft products. (Most game programmers, for example, are tied up developing compelling new titles for dedicated gaming systems like Playstation 2 -- not for some yet unheard-of OS for a new computer.)
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Probably because he didn't really lie as far as I know. After all, he never said it couldn't be done, just that doing it would mess up MS bad.
      Am I wrong? Maybe he did say that it couldn't be done.
      In any event, the Register has a nice story [theregister.co.uk] about bias of the judge in this case. They point out that this judge has exhibited a significant amount of bias toward MS and the government in this case, and speculate it could be due to two reasons: (1) She is biased (2) She's trying to remove any reason anyone might have in the future for claiming she was biased against MS in a decision against them. I personally don't know. But the crap that MS has been allowed to get away with in this trial has amazed me.
    • by guanxi (216397) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:54AM (#3408654)

      And why don't perjury charges apply here?

      IANAL, but real, practicing attorneys have told me that almost nobody is ever charged with perjury. Every time the cross-examination catches someone in a lie, is it perjury? We'd need new prisons.

      OT: Knowing this, the hypocricy of certain elected representatives a few years ago, who of course lie all the time and know very well how exceedingly rare perjury charges are, should be more apparent. Not that their opponents aren't equally hypocritical

    • by flatrock (79357) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:01AM (#3408703)
      Because a stripped down version of windows with things pulled out for an embedded system is different from the integrated, tested product that MS produces now. If you strip out things, you have to realize that other parts of the software may not work. THis is fine in an embedded system. A consumer OS is a very different market. One you pull stuff out, and you start putting other people's software in you've got a lot of testing to do to make sure you have a total package that works well together.

      It's not perjury, because the answers aren't as simple as yes or no. It can easily be argued that the States are compareing two different things.
  • Fear (Score:2, Funny)

    by misfit13b (572861)

    You put the loudmouth on the stand, and after a few days the fear of purguring (sp?) himself makes him yelp out the gory details.

    The "can't" talk couldn't last forever.
  • by sdflkgfljdqshgjkqsfg (129027) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:04AM (#3408347)
    Bill Gates also added that maybe 640k was'nt enough for everyone.
  • by naoursla (99850) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:04AM (#3408348) Homepage Journal
    It was all a ploy. Step one: Get everyone else at Microsoft to agree that a stripped down Windows isn't possible. Step two: Bill says well "Well, 'I' could do it". Step three: Claim supreme programming and design abilites... again...
  • While we're at it, could we see about getting a stripped down AOL client, or a modular version of Oracle as well?
  • by Profane Motherfucker (564659) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:05AM (#3408353) Journal
    Fucking shit on it man, Gates lies.
    Yes, Enron lied.
    Yes, Clinton lied.
    Yes GE lied about PCBs in the Hudson
    Yes, Agnew lied
    Yes, Oliver North lied
    Yes, Bush lied.

    All those fucking fuckers lied.

    This is not a surprise.

    Gates makes more money than Jesus could at a PromiseKeeper's event. Making and grabbing power is at odds with honesty and fairness. You don't fucking dominate the world by being a Nice Motherfucker.

    The real news would be if Gates didn't lie. He's in fucking marketing. They ALL fucking like. Jobs lies, Jack Nasser lies, they're fucking liars. Just deal with it, and don't get your panties in your crack when it happens.
  • XP Embedded (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Geek In Training (12075) <cb398&hotmail,com> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:06AM (#3408355) Homepage
    They talked about this on NPR on my way to work this morning. Windows XP Embedded ("used for medical devices," amongst other things) is completely modular and can be customized for specific purposes. Gates admitted that he did not know how this might be adapted to x86 machines.

    I think it's clear that XP embedded would not be what "the consumers" want for their desktops; but on the other hand, Microsoft clearly CAN engineer an OS on x86 that is modular and customizable for OEMs, as the sanctions seem to be calling for.

    I think the issue is that Microsoft doesn't WANT to expend the time, effort, and MONEY to develop such an OS; not that it isn't possible. They apparently think integration is their only key to stability.

    Explain to me, then, all the various Linux distros for desktops that allow you pick and choose? And much of those components are developed by what Microsoft would consider "amateurs?"
    • Windows XP Embedded ("used for medical devices," amongst other things)

      Giving new meaning to the "Blue Screen of Death". I hore I die before I end up on medical gear controled by Winblows.
    • Re:XP Embedded (Score:3, Interesting)

      by cygnusx (193092)
      Just a wiild theory. Could this new found focus on XP Embedded have something to do with the fact that it doesn't sell very well, as of now? I wonder how QNX, Lineo and the others feel about having to take on XP Embedded when it rides the tailwinds of XP Embedded customized for PCs, XBoxen, Mira and more [pcformat.co.uk].

      Remember, if you look at MS's vision for the PC in 3-4 years time, it approaches a consumer electronic device more than anything else, which competes in the living room with the TV. With that in mind, I wonder who was leading who in this cross-examination.

      Just my rather dazed thoughts. I think I need sleep...
    • Re:XP Embedded (Score:3, Interesting)

      by rearden (304396)

      What is being overlooked here is software development and support. Think of the number of applications that are out there that currently make calls to "middleware" in Windows OS's. Now, lets say my mother buys a new Dell but Dell has opted to take out IE & MS Media Player. My dear old mother starts to install programs that use IE and MS Media Player and suddenly they do not work. She is not going to understand or care about anything other than either a) her new computer is broken or b)she is not going to repurchase the latest versions of perfectly working programs. Are we going to expect all the other software companies that already have a difficult time competing to go back and re-release fixes for all of thier old applications for free?!?!!? The would go bankrupt!

      The reality of it is there are too many dare I say legacy applications out there that will be disabled and create a support nightmare. Aditionally, think of the support problems. Your new girlfriend (or boyfriend) calls and wants some help with his or her computer. Which version do they have? Does it have IE built in or not? Defrag built in or not? Media player, HyperTerminal, or any list of other things.

      The really big question is what constitutes "middleware"? Read the description provided by both MS & the 9 states. The concept of this "middleware" is not based on technology but a feeling some lawyers have. In theroy could the entire user interface not be "middleware"? Linux ships without a specific GUI, so could Windows, now we really have a support and programming nightmare.

      Like it or not, MS has helped do one thing- provide a simplified base for the consumer . Not us programmers, hacksers, and computer junkies, but for our mothers, brothers and aunts. My mother need only know that she has a really fast Dell Pentium IV with Windows XP Home on it to go get a new program. The support for the enduser will only get worse if the number of different OS's and "modules" grows adinfinum.

      IMHO while I do not really like MS, I have to agree a modular WinOS will wreak havoc in the consumer PC market and quite possibly set us back not from a technical standpoint but from a end user support and usablity standpoint.

      *shrug*

      -JLK
      • Re:XP Embedded (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Aceticon (140883) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:32AM (#3408909)
        The reality of it is there are too many dare I say legacy applications out there that will be disabled and create a support nightmare. Aditionally, think of the support problems. Your new girlfriend (or boyfriend) calls and wants some help with his or her computer. Which version do they have? Does it have IE built in or not? Defrag built in or not? Media player, HyperTerminal, or any list of other things.

        In what way having to figure out if a program is there or not (and deal with it) is more complex than (the current situation of) having to figure out which version is installed (and deal with it)???
    • Re: XP Embedded (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Black Parrot (19622) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:32AM (#3408535)


      > I think the issue is that Microsoft doesn't WANT to expend the time, effort, and MONEY to develop such an OS; not that it isn't possible. They apparently think integration is their only key to stability.

      No, they think integration is their only key to keeping other vendors off the playing field.

      Which is of course why they're in court to begin with.

    • Re:XP Embedded (Score:3, Informative)

      by Lumpy (12016)
      OMG... I hope they try...

      Microsoft is considered a joke in the embedded world. No important systems use CE,Embedded NT, or whatever they try to offer... the ONLY items that use their "embedded" products are the consumer toys we call PDA's.

      Microsoft isnt considered for process control, flight control, elevator control, smart building control, or any REAL embedded systems.. a RealTime DOS or a RT-UNIX is used (Or in the case of aircraft.. a custom application.. NO OS USED)

      Microsoft is the joke of the embedded world.. and everything they try outside of gadget-toys flops horribly.. (AutoPC, UltimateTV, WinCD industrial)
      • Re:XP Embedded (Score:3, Informative)

        by flatrock (79357)
        I know of a number of companies using Embedded NT or Win 2k for network attached storage. I know of a local company that's using embedded Win 2k for a medical imaging product. When my wife had Lasik eye surgery, the computer running the laser was running NT (that one made me pretty nervous). Embedded NT/2k/XP aren't what I'd call real-time OSs, but they do get used.

        Or in the case of aircraft.. a custom application.. NO OS USED

        Most avionics envioronmet projects, at least once you get above small prop planes, involve processors running OSs. The most popluar one for the part of market that we deal with still seems to be VxWorks. I've also seen some LynxOS. Linux seems to be still gaining strength in this market, but more where real-time isn't as critical. QNX comes up when you're dealing with Canadian companies, but I haven't heard of it being used that much.
    • Funding??! (Score:5, Informative)

      by forged (206127) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `zsetlos'> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:46AM (#3408613) Homepage Journal
      • Microsoft doesn't WANT to expend the time, effort, and MONEY to develop such an OS

      You should find the following article [cnn.com] from CNN MONEY interesting. It discusses a certain aspect of Microsoft balance sheet.

      "No other nonfinancial firm has more liquid money at its disposal, and only a handful of banks do. It's more cash than Ford, ExxonMobil and Wal-Mart have combined, and nearly four times as much as Intel, the tech company with the next largest cash balance.

      It is enough to buy the entire airline industry -- twice. Or all the gold in Fort Knox, four times over. It is enough to buy 23 space shuttles or every major professional baseball, basketball, football and hockey team in America. It is an enviable stash. Who wouldn't love to have a bank account like that?"

      Some food for thought.

      • Re:Funding??! (Score:3, Informative)

        by SpotBug (228742)

        In case anyone is interested (without going to the article), the actual figure is something over $40 billion. Not that the long string of comparisons wasn't interesting. :-)
      • by gosand (234100) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @11:12AM (#3409164)
        It is enough to buy the entire airline industry -- twice. Or all the gold in Fort Knox, four times over. It is enough to buy 23 space shuttles or every major professional baseball, basketball, football and hockey team in America. It is an enviable stash.

        ...or enough to buy one team of lawyers. :-)

        I guess we'll have to wait and see if it is enough to buy a government.

      • by Shiny Metal S. (544229) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @12:51PM (#3409844) Homepage

        "No other nonfinancial firm has more liquid money at its disposal, and only a handful of banks do. [...] Who wouldn't love to have a bank account like that?" Some food for thought.

        Have you read the Microsoft Financial Pyramid [billparish.com], the MS financial fraud analysis from November 1999 by Bill Parish? There's more on Parish's Research and Press Release Archive [billparish.com]. Let me quote few paragraphs:

        We live in extraordinary economic times here in the U.S. and this success could ignite a whole new cycle of economic prosperity. We must first, however, take a hard look at what is occurring at Microsoft. Microsoft is a great company with terrific employees. Sadly, many of these brilliant people have been blinded by the stock price and unable to see that Microsoft is also the key architect of the greatest financial pyramid scheme this century. It is not uncommon for participants in pyramid schemes to lose their emotional bearings. My close friends who work at Microsoft are particularly upset over my work and it is possible that even Bill Gates and Steve Ballmer do not realize the implications of their financial practices.

        The fundamental problem is that Microsoft is incurring massive losses and only by accounting illusions are they able to show a profit. Specifically, Microsoft is granting excessive amounts of stock options that are allowing the company to understate its costs. You might ask yourself, what would happen to Microsoft's stock price if the public suddenly realized that they lost $10 billion in 1999 rather than earning the reported $7.8 billion? If 80 percent of its stock value or roughly $400 billion is the result of a pyramid scheme, one might also ask what kind of effect this could have on the retirement system. It is also important to note that this is a relatively new situation that did not occur before 1995. Microsoft has always been a highly valued stock and that might have been justified prior to 1995.

        This situation is not about stock valuation, product quality or whether or not Microsoft has monopoly power in its markets. Nor is it part of a pro or anti-Microsoft movement. This situation is instead a shining example of financial fraud and corruption enabled by bad government policy. If not quickly and aggressively addressed, we will all be losers as credibility in our financial markets is destroyed.

        [... [billparish.com]]

        What do you people think about it?

      • Re:Funding??! (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Trekologer (86619) <{adb} {at} {trekologer.net}> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @01:53PM (#3410207) Homepage
        Despite all of that cash on hand, Microsoft has never paid one cent to investors in dividends [com.com].

        Investors determine stock prices based on the return that they receive on the stock. This return is in the form of dividends, that is, money paid to the owners of a stock as a reward for assuming the risk of owning the stock. The reason that Microsoft's stock value is high is that there is an expectation that dividends will be paid in the future. Using the past as a model for the future, it is my conclusion that Microsoft will continue to not pay dividends. Because of that, the value of Microsoft stock should be zero.
    • Re:XP Embedded (Score:5, Insightful)

      by lynx_user_abroad (323975) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:02AM (#3408715) Homepage Journal
      Explain to me, then, all the various Linux distros for desktops that allow you pick and choose?

      Integration (bundling things together, and making them require each other) is a primary method that a corporation can use to differentiate their products from their competitors, to retain control over the product they are selling, to retain their market share, to create barriers to entry of competitors, and to maintain abnormally high prices.

      Modularization (breaking things up into little black boxes with well defined interfaces) is a strategy for allowing competition, and is therefore much favored by consumers, in the long run.

      Which is not to say that integration is always bad. In a competitive market, integration is a valuable technique for product differentiation, but less valuable as a means to retain product control. In a monopolized market, integration is useless as a product differentiator, but extremely effective for retaining product control.

      One of Microsoft's strategies all along has been to pretend they don't have a monopoly, and therefore everything they do must be for the "competitive market" reasons (which are to be encouraged) rather than the "monopolized market" reasons, which earned them their antitrust conviction.

      As an example, if you must buy a Ford radio for your Ford car, your choices are more limited than if you can buy any radio, tape player, CD player, etc. and just "plug it in". They can also require you to buy one of their (presumably overpriced) radios with every car they sell, even if you don't need a radio. The example breaks down with software; a Ford truck can't know you've installed a non-Ford radio, and therefore can't demand that you remove it and replace it with a genuine Ford radio. With software, it not only can do this, it can do it by itself.

      When Microsoft says they can't create a modular operating system, they just mean it's not in their own interest to do so. The free software community, being built by the consumers of the software, has every incentive to modularize, and little incentive to force integration.

      Their embedded product is an example of where they don't yet have a monopoly, in a market that requires a modular product. You bet they have a modular version of Windows to address that market.

    • I think the issue is that Microsoft doesn't WANT to expend the time, effort, and MONEY to develop such an OS; not that it isn't possible.

      I don't think the issue is about effort or money. It's about control. They don't want a modular windows where Dell could remove IE and replace it with Mozilla. That kind of thing scares the pants off them because it means they have to start competing on quality and price, rather than just using their OS monopoly to force stuff on consumers.
  • by Heem (448667)
    Does anyone else have a problem with..

    Mr Gates admitted that Windows XP Embedded, a version of Windows used in
    products such as bank cash machines,


    Time to put my money back under my mattress.
  • Windows Free (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Vespillo (304684) <vespillo@[ ]ada.com ['can' in gap]> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:06AM (#3408358) Homepage
    I always thought that a free stripped down version of Windows would be a great idea on Microsoft's part, just remove everything from it(solitare, defrag, calc,...) and leave it with just the basics, and of course a shortcut on the desktop were you can buy the upgrade to XP or whatever. This would really allow them to compete with Unix and allow for a much greater customized windows with all the little microsoft programs removed.
    • Re:Windows Free (Score:5, Interesting)

      by W2k (540424) <wilhelm DOT svenselius AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:51AM (#3409052) Homepage Journal
      That's funny - you know what a free version of Windows that'd still run all Windows-compatible programs would do? Kill Linux off the desktop. Yeah, that's right. Make Windows free and a lot of people will loose one of their main reasons for switching to Linux. There would be free or shareware alternatives to all the Microsoft stuff that's been taken out almost instantly should Microsoft release a free version of Windows - simply because of the sudden demand for it.

      Of course, it wouldn't help Windows succeed in the server market. But trust me, it would kill Linux on the desktop.
  • by swagr (244747)
    Heh. And people were saying that Gates' testifying via pre-recorded message was bad for the previous trial.

    • " Heh. And people were saying that Gates' testifying via pre-recorded message was bad for the previous trial."

      That is basically the point... Gates is a horrible public speaker, because he _ISNT_ good at spinning and hiding his real thoughts. This is why he usually speaks with handlers present...

      If you read his testimony, he really unraveled towards the end... This is one place where he TOTALLY lost it.

      There is no reason why they can't make a modular windows.. Hell, they don't even HAVE to take everything they want in there (IE, Outlook, MSIM etc) out, all they have to do is make it OPTIONAL and customizable on install WHAT you put in...

      That way, for instance, you COULD sell someone a `Doze PC without IE, etc

      The fact that he admitted that modular XP code already exists is incredibly damming...
  • by PanBanger (465405) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:07AM (#3408366)
    "Throughout his testimony, Mr Gates remained calm and relaxed, in contrast to his performance during the original antitrust trial two years ago."

    Funny how having the White House in your back pocket can improve your attitude, isn't it?
  • by Kombat (93720) <kombat@kombat.org> on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:08AM (#3408367) Homepage
    I think from the article, it's pretty clear that Microsoft will eventually be ordered to market some form of a stripped-down Windows product. However, even though he's portrayed as the "bad guy," I think Gates has a bit of a point, with these comments:

    "What Windows is loses any meaning," claimed Mr Gates. He said the proposals were "fantasies" that gave his business rivals "everything they ever dreamed of".

    Sure, Microsoft needs to lose some power here, but I hope they don't swing the pendulum too far the other way. Are we really any better off if Sun or Oracle are given the power to choose the direction of Windows? I hope the decision makers stick to the principle of "What's good for the consumers," and not just "What's bad for Microsoft."

    • by x98chn (558072) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:20AM (#3408449)
      I hope the decision makers stick to the principle of "What's good for the consumers," and not just "What's bad for Microsoft."

      Exactly, the anti-trust laws are in place to protect the users/consumers, not reward MS competition.
      • but is that not what they end up doing in a case where a break up does not happen?

        when you weaken a company rather than break it up, you allow competing products into the market rather than multiple products of the same codebase.

        I think a break up of the applications and the operating system would have been so much better, then you just force the application company to develope for 3 competing platforms and your competition is solved.
    • Sure, Microsoft needs to lose some power here, but I hope they don't swing the pendulum too far the other way. Are we really any better off if Sun or Oracle are given the power to choose the direction of Windows? I hope the decision makers stick to the principle of "What's good for the consumers," and not just "What's bad for Microsoft."

      We have proven the Microsoft has a monopoly and the power that goes with it. Now we need to rectify that situation. How do we do this?

      Well, a monopoly mans that you can use your power to keep others out of the marketplace unfairly. So we have to force competition back. There are two solutions to this problem: We weaken the monoply (Microsoft) enough that the competition can actually compete, or we strenghen the position of competitors enough that they are able to compete.

      The problem with the second solution is that you generally have to pick and choose the companies that you want to set up against the monopoly. For example, how would the federal government effectively help Linux out to compete with Microsoft as a business?

      Weakening Microsoft, on the other hand, helps anyone and every compete against them, including competitors who are not even around during this sentencing phase.

      The only way that Sun or Oracle will have too much power is if we (the federal government) decide to strengthen them against Microsoft. Weakening MS, on the other hand, will hopefully *increase* competition to the point where no single company will be able to control the market. How will it keep one company from dominating? The remedy to the Microsoft trial should promote competition, and competition is the one thing that will prevent any one company from dominating that market.

      I think that Microsoft is going about this all wrong. They are arguing that "If you do this, you will hurt us." Well, boys and girls, that is the point. The governement's solution *is* to hurt MS so as to increase competition. What Microsoft needs to be saying is "This remedy does not work because it will allow another company to simply step in and take our place as a monopoly power."

      Unfortunate for Microsoft, no rememdy that has been mentioned thus far has that result.
  • by HiQ (159108) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:08AM (#3408369)
    I was scanning the article quickly, and read this: bank cash machines. I swear that I saw an 'r' somewhere in that sentence!
  • If they strip windows enought maybe people could discover that it is only DOS in disguise!!
  • by pb (1020) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:10AM (#3408384)
    Microsoft *can* manufacture a stripped-down version of Windows without all the unnecessary bells and whistles.

    This new product is called 'DOS'.

    ;)
  • The question was regarding XP Embedded, where partners can select what portions of the OS they want to install and can also be assured that no third party apps will be installed later and cause unknown consequences. It's a very controlled environment running on a standardized platform.

    Please, I beg you. Read the articles before spewing your hatred. It does nothing for your cause.
    • Each and every one of those games are transiently installed and they are all largely "3rd party apps" with the notable exceptions of things from Bungie. In all honesty, MS could install a version of XP Embedded as a personal/server OS and very probably achieve the stability they keep touting (and missing for the most part) for their other platforms. Part of where the stability problems come in is from all the "integration" and the fact that thier apps and a lot of other apps change key pieces of the system (like each and every one of the runtime libs...).

      Believe me when I say I DO understand what I'm talking about and it doesn't matter whether or not it's XP Embedded or not- they COULD make a modular OS that doesn't have half the problems that their current "consumer" or "professional" editions have.
  • by deanj (519759) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:13AM (#3408399)
    ....smoking is bad for you. Linux is a great development platform. People get really ticked off when they talk about politics with someone that doesn't agree with them.

    These, and other stories, covered in DUH Magazine.

    Heh...sorry for the rant. This Microsoft "admission" is something that's so obvious to people in software development. I'm glad someone realized that was a point they could make against Microsoft.

    The thing I find most amazing about this whole thing is Microsoft saying "Other companies want to see Microsoft destroyed" and similar things. This is EXACTLY what Microsoft has been doing to countless other companies for YEARS.

    • Which translates into a big thing- they can't spin it away so easily now. They HAVE to own up to it, because it's the Chairman of the Board that said it under oath.
    • by dhogaza (64507)
      Heh...sorry for the rant. This Microsoft "admission" is something that's so obvious to people in software development. I'm glad someone realized that was a point they could make against Microsoft.

      It's important because Gates had not yielded the point in the first round of cross-examination.

      Gates was reminded that an earlier witness for the States had testified that it would be possible to put together a stripped-down version (some CS prof who was given access to the source in order to prepare his testimony).

      Gates said the earlier witness was wrong.

      Gates was asked if the court should really be expected to believe him rather than the witness. Gates answered to the effect that "I know the Windows product ..."

      Now the attorney for the states has apparently brought up XP Embedded explictly and Gates was forced to yield.

      The attorney for the states has been attacking the credibility of Gates's answers on several issues, for instance his claim that MicroSoft will withdraw Windows from the market if the states prevail.

      So the point isn't the unsurprising (to software engineers) point that Windows XP could be modularized (given that it has already been modularized).

      The point is that the attorney for the states has destroyed the credibility of Gates earlier testimony on this issue.

      Which may well undermine the credibility of much of the rest of Gates testimony.

      The attorney for the states has also been quite successful in undermining the credibility of several other witnesses for Microsoft.

      The effect of diminishing the credibility of Gates and other MS witnesses might be huge when the Judge considers her ruling.

      Or it might not ... the fact that the DOJ and MS are in agreement on the proposed remedy is something the Judge won't be able to ignore entirely.
  • by truthsearch (249536) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:14AM (#3408410) Homepage Journal
    Newsforge is running a very good article [newsforge.com] summarizing some of Gates' testimony with a number of links to further info. The author makes some good points. There's a claim that Windows' code is too complicated to document and it's not at all modular. Any good software developer knows that modular design is important in large projects. Only a monopoly could claim their software is poorly designed without fearing loss of customers.
    • There's a claim that Windows' code is too complicated to document and it's not at all modular.

      OK, after reading the article, I'm somewhat confused. I openly admit to not being a programmer or coder, and the inner workings of a computer are pretty much a mystery to me. As such, I ask this question: Why does Gates claim that creating a stripped down version of windows like, Windows Embedded, require excessive testing for its compatability with other software?

      Mr Gates admitted that Windows XP Embedded, a version of Windows used in products such as bank cash machines, allowed programmers to pick and chose which functions they wanted. However, Mr Gates pointed out that Windows XP Embedded required considerable testing after the options had been selected, and would not allow third-party software to be subsequently added.


      How is this different that than running any given piece of software on Windows? How is this different than running Q3 or Diablo2? Sure, you need a web browser for Win Help, but why does it matter which it is? Why does he claim that it will require so much testing?

      I ask out of ignorance, not trolling. I throw myself on the mercy of the slashdot community. If it has any.
    • by for(;;); (21766) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:55AM (#3409073)
      > Only a monopoly could claim their software is
      > poorly designed without fearing loss of
      > customers.

      The Linux kernel has made similar comprimises, and Torvalds has admitted as much in debates about monolithic vs. micro kernels. Linux's monolithic design is not as flexible as it could be (when compiled), but the design increases execution speed and ease-of-coding. The HURD was designed to be aggressively modular, with very cool, very fine-grained things you can do with services that would be the exclusive domain of the superuser on other kernels. It was designed this way because the FSF is lead by a visionary, uncomprimising, probably somewhat mad Coder. Linux was designed initially to be a quick fix for GNU (see Torvalds' 1991 post to comp.os.minix announcing Linux -- "just a hobby, won't be big and professional like gnu"). So the Linux kernel design comprimised modularity for expediency. This was a good thing, just as the continuing work on the HURD is a good thing. They have different goals, and will succeed in different ways.

      G-tes, although he probably doesn't realize it, is pointing out the same phenomenon in the codebase of his Spawn. The ol' NT codebase wasn't designed to be modular (to the extent it was, it didn't stay that way long). The non-modularity was for expediency (like Linux) and to promote an inescapable software monoculture (ALSO LIKE LINUX! ...oh, I kid...must not troll during hopefully great troll blackout...). But the point is, modularity is something that is great for users once it's completed, but really hinders rapid software deployment. Real-world software engineering is riddled with these comprimises.
      • You seem to be the one that needs to be rational. No one at the trial is talking about the M$ Windows kernel. They are talking about the product that contains the kernel, web browser, email, word processors, spread sheets, etc... That is what billy bob is claiming is too integrated to break up.

        "You can't remove IE without crippling Windows!!"

        That is complete bullshit and is not comparable to anything Linux/hurd/solaris/... have ever done.

        t.

  • The sky is blue, the earth is round, and Microsoft is still a monopoly. I wish computer makers would offer me a choice between actual operating systems, not just which useless crap I want removed from Windows.
  • Mr Gates also said that the discounts that Microsoft would have to offer under the proposals for stripped-down versions of Windows would lead to savings for computer makers worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Mr Gates said his group's sales to computer manufacturers were worth between $6bn-$7bn a year, and that the discounts could reach 25 per cent of those revenues.


    Oh, no! Really?! You're telling me that the very people you've pushed around for a decade or so might actually see some benefits when you finally get caught and punished? Wow!

    Imagine that, Microsoft's punishment for its unfair stranglehold on the computing industry is a lessening of that stranglehold!

    I'm cryin' here...
  • he said "technicly" possable BUT it would destroy the computer market by maing it near impossable for a programmer to know what a person had and did not have on their his or her computer.

    though this is just a lie since MS can keep DLLs on the system to provide the resources that their applications add.
  • Personally, I think a more modular Windows - where DiectX, IE, Media Player, Et All, would be a Good Thing allaround. It would make it much like OS X - a system where the core API and commands (cut, paste) are controlled in one place, and the apps simply using the OS for basic i/o needs - so it doesn't matter which browser/media player you use - it just talks to the OS for what it needs. The way it Should Be.

    But lets not forget MS's past. Suppose they shipped XP Lite (say $30 to the consumer, $15 to OEM's, and other components could be downloded for a price). You put on Mozilla, and set it to be the default app for HTML.

    Any bets that MS would simply make their help files - which should be HTML based - so non-HTML standard that Mozilla can't display them correctly? Then they can say on their tech support line "Oh, help files won't display? It's because your computer seller sold you a non-standards compliant browser - buy IE for $5, and next time, only buy a computers from a vendor that isn't trying to rip you off with cheap open source software."

    They do the same for media files (excusive contracts with artists, who don't get anything from the RIAA anyway) to make their online music only Windows Media. Or who knows what else - remember the DR DOS issue? They've done t once, and like a fomer priest defrocked priest running a day care, they'll do t again.

    The point is MS could make windows modular - and we would still have to watch them like a hawk to keep them from using their old tricks.
  • Back when it was Embedded NT. At the time, it was little more than a toy. Although, installing NT onto a Disk On Chip and running it in a totally diskless environment was cool. However, configuration was a royal pain (even when using disk based installs), and getting any app. to work was so close to impossible that you might as well have gone for a full blown NT install. Long story short...yes, Embedded exists...but I wonder how functional it would be, real world, without MS browser being FULLY integrated. Keep tryin' Bill!!
  • LIAR! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by geoswan (316494) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:32AM (#3408531) Journal
    Mr Gates has argued during three days of testimony that the states' proposals were cobbled together by its corporate rivals, and that the states have not thought through the proposals' feasibility or implications. ... in an attempt to show that reasonable business behaviour would be banned under the states' remedies, and that consumers would suffer.

    Wait a second, is there a single slashdot reader who wouldn't agree that writing modular software is a good thing? Is there a single person who passed Computer Science 101 who wouldn't agree that modular software, with clearly defined interfaces isn't easier to debug and maintain?

    If Microsoft's software is not modular, it is not for technical reasons. Its monolithic nature is not an attempt to "serve the consumer". The monolithic nature of microsoft software has proven extremely costly to consumers. Gates cites "reasonable business behaviour"? Translation: "Screw the consumer. Hook 'em. Gut 'em. Hang 'em up to dry. And tell them to like it."

    Let's examine some of Microsoft's design decisions.

    MS-DOS, MS-Windows 3.x, orginal Windows 95, did not initiate a fsck, or its DOS equivalent. How come? I am sure slashdot readers who are old enough have had the same experience that I had back then. Naive computer users who ask for our help, because "they have been hit by a virus". What makes them think they have been hit by a virus? Some of their files have become corrupted, or disappeared. Initiate a scandisk, and what did you find? Dozens or hundreds of file fragments, leftover and never repaired from when Windows crashed on them. How much has all this disk corruption cost consumers? My estimate? At least ten billion dollars.

    Or consider macro viruses? People used to ask, "can I get a virus through e-mail?" And we used to be able to tell them "no", unless they chose to open an executable attachment. E-mail macro viruses, Word macro viruses, are only possible due to really stupid design decisions on the part of Microsoft. How costly has that been?

  • by Lumpy (12016) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @09:36AM (#3408560) Homepage
    That's impossible... the rich never lie.

    He was only mistaken 2 years ago...
    He was confused with all the technology talk...
    He didn't understand the judge's Dialect...
    He couldn't hear correctly as he was overly upset hearing about a possible bug in windows...
    He couldnt sleep the night before worried that he was overpricing windows and wasn't thinking clearly..
    He spend the night before helping homeless children learn linux, so he didnt think clearly...

    I can make up tons of other excuses for him...
    I am sure that Billy only has our best interests in mind.. he makes his products only for the good of all humanity...
  • by Keelor (95571) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:22AM (#3408844)
    According to the an article in the subscriber section of the Wall Street Journal web site:

    In his written testimony, Mr. Gates said Embedded was "not a general-purpose operating system," and that it was designed merely to "run a single-purpose device like an ATM or cash register." But when Mr. Kuney asked him whether someone could build an operating system with Embedded that could run on a PC, supporting the Office functions, Mr. Gates responded, "Technically you could." Embedded, he said, could be used to build "essentially all of Windows XP except for the installer." The installer is the function to which Mr. Gates was referring when he said that other applications couldn't be installed later.

    So as long as people are willing to accept whatever their OEM have installed for the lifetime of their machine, this is a perfectly acceptable solution.

    However, it does seem that they could develop an installer for XP Embedded--the fact that it currently isn't up to the task is hardly an excuse.

    ~=Keelor



  • 98Lite.net [98lite.net]

    98lite.net shows it's not only possible, but helps improve the speed and reliability of windows.

    Is perjury still against the law?

    Webster: " the voluntary violation of an oath or vow either by swearing to what is untrue or by omission to do what has been promised under oath : false swearing"

    And for all you disagreeing posters, read the actual 98lite.net pages first before you post back.
    • Lots of talk about how 98 is 4 years old, and so on...

      Here's the trick. I use 98SE at home for two reasons:

      First, I know it inside and out - I can troubleshoot it, I can tweak it, and I know what to expect when it inevitably blows up. I can't say the same for 2000, no matter how vauntedly stable it is. The internal archetecture is just different enough to throw me off, and I don't feel comfortable with it. I'm sticking with the devil I know.

      Second, I only use it as a game machine anyway. Most games that I've purchased these days only have manual addenda for running the software on 2000/XP boxen. Plus, most require that you play it as Administrator, which kills the whole reason for preferring a NT-based kernel over 98's anyway. I can't say I'm an industry insider or anything, but it looks like games are still being written with Win98 users in mind. I mean, we don't *all* run out and upgrade each time Microsoft decides it's time for us to do so. There's still a good-sized user base out there, and I think many would agree with me that 98 represents the best balance between functionality and bloat, or between stability (look! it runs!) and compatability (look! it runs what you want it to run!). At least for my purposes it does.

      Seeing that Win95 recently fell out of the support chain, I'm sure 98's head is on the chopping block for the next year or two. After that, I may well have to upgrade, at which point it will be time to reassess my priorities...

      ...or hope that WINE's got support for whatever DirectX version is out by then.
  • by madro (221107) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @10:29AM (#3408894)
    Sums it up nicely: [ucomics.com]
    In the courtroom at the stand ...
    Gates: The proposed restrictions are too severe!
    Gates: If they're imposed, I bet we'll have to stop selling Windows altogether!
    Judge (banging gavel): Order in the court.
    Judge: Everybody put your money away. I don't think Mr. Gates was literally offering that bet.
    (Standard Tom Toles Small Print -- Gates: You can't give our competitors our most valuable asset ... an unfair advantage.)
  • Well, yes. (Score:4, Informative)

    by Effugas (2378) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @12:11PM (#3409560) Homepage
    Well, yes. It's quite possible to ship a version of Windows XP without the web browsing component. It's also possible to ship it without the DOS Emulation component, or the Win16 execution environment, or MFC, or any VC++ libraries, or whatnot.

    They're called API's, folks. Application Programming Interfaces. Win32 is clunky as hell, but undeniably exposes some damn powerful capabilities. Do we really want a federal mandate that developers must not have dependable access to a better way to code?

    For all the talk of the browser, I do note that by '98 there wasn't an operating system on the market that shipped without a web browser, except perhaps VxWorks. Windows 98 was one of the last.

    --Dan

    P.S. I'm a hardcore Linux user, coder, and administrator, and wouldn't mandate Win32 on anyone. It's in that context that I understand the painfulness of MS's position.
  • by A_Non_Moose (413034) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @12:57PM (#3409891) Homepage Journal
    Of course any version of Windows can be embeded...

    You just have to throw the disk at a wall hard enough.

    There it is embeded.
  • by Hiawatha (13285) on Thursday April 25, 2002 @01:58PM (#3410239)
    I covered the testimony for the Boston Globe, and sat through three grueling and often fascinating days of it.

    Yes, he did say that one could use XP Embedded to create a version of XP with the various middleware components removed, but he noted that this doesn't solve the problem at all.

    To understand, you need to read Section 1 of the proposed states' remedies. It doesn't simply say that Microsoft must create an unbundled version of Windows. It says that this unbundled version must work as well as the bundled version, with no serious degradation in performance.

    Gates said yes, you could use the XP Embedded tools to create an unbundled version of Windows. But all the dependency errors he'd warned about would still occur. In other words, the operating system would indeed run. It's just that dozens, hundreds or thousands of applications programs might not.

    And if that isn't a degradation of OS performance, I don't know what is. Gates' so-called "admission" amounted to a restatement of what he's been saying all along.

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