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  • MS under Nadella is the real big time winner. And us? Read this, and don't weep.

    Posted on OscarCP Comment on the AskWoody Lounge

    Home Forums Outside the box Rumors and what-ifs MS under Nadella is the real big time winner. And us? Read this, and don't weep.

    This topic contains 9 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  mn– 3 months, 1 week ago.

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    • #320053 Reply

      OscarCP
      AskWoody Plus

      Doing the numbers show why MS is the big winner under Nadella. And that makes the rest of us the big losers? This BBC article probably explains the why and the how. So read this, and try not to weep:

      https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-47078013

      Disturbing facts with dire implications for the future of Windows, at least as long as things remain moving in the same direction described there.

      But, at least, Nadella “loves LINUX.” As well he might, if it really takes all this Windows inconvenience off his hands. So pay attention, you Ubuntu, Mint, etc. promoters here!

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #320399 Reply

      mn–
      AskWoody Lounger

      Eh, sure.

      There’s approximately two critical software products still missing before Microsoft is ready for a service-economy push for end-user Linux desktops…

      A working OneDrive/Sharepoint\ Online client with 2-way sync, and a client app for Azure Information Protection… not all that much if they’d really want to get out and push for it.

      With just the former, approximately the full Office 365 Business Essentials feature set would be available, and AIP is the most commonly required upgrade on top of that, really.

      1 user thanked author for this post.
    • #322028 Reply

      Lugh
      AskWoody_MVP

      that makes the rest of us the big losers

      How so, Oscar? I don’t see anything there to be alarmed about.

      Lugh.
      ~
      Alienware Aurora R6; Win10 Home x64 1803; Office 365 x32
      i7-7700; GeForce GTX 1060; 16GB DDR4 2400; 1TB SSD, 256GB SSD, 4TB HD

      • #322139 Reply

        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Well Lugh, the way I read this article, it means that the course for future Windows development is set in stone, and not in a convenient way, at least for me. I see myself as loosing my ability to continue using Windows, which to me is a definite loss – but not the end of the world, more like an unwelcome and quite unnecessarily imposed inconvenience. For one, I may no longer be patronizing Woody’s, which is in many ways a source of useful information, but soon is going to have to be almost entirely about Windows 10 (with an occasional mention of 8.1), while probably housing an increasing litany of complaints about Window 10, “the last Windows” we’ll have — for ever, or so it is threatened and the article, as I read it, largely confirms.

        Others, depending on what they do, may see it differently. Perhaps “makes the rest of us the big losers” was too broad a statement. But I am rather confident that: “makes quite a few of us the big losers” may not hit too far from the mark. And from what I read daily here, there is more than a few that may see it this way too.

        Edited to add additional information:

        To clarify further why I’ll be a “loser” after the coming of Windows 10 as the “last Windows” and the only supported for the indefinite future (unlike 8.1) from next year, I have already explained that to some length here: #321836

        Group B, Windows 7 Pro, SP1 x64.

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    • #322799 Reply

      Lugh
      AskWoody_MVP

      Thanks Oscar—and I’d already read the other thread you linked.

      As a number of people in the Preston Galla thread said, Windows is at or near being a mature product for the mass market. That makes it imperative for MS to change from the buy to the subscription model, otherwise the revenue gradually dries up.

      They did this very successfully with MS Office by offering excellent value in some of their always-confusing pricing models. If they do likewise for Windows, we’ll all be winners.

      Operating systems, productivity suites, internet—a lot of the big stuff is nearing the utility stage, ie where they’re like electricity or water. The billions will want it all on tap. People like us can choose to run our own generators and dig our own wells if we like. It’s all good 🙂

      Lugh.
      ~
      Alienware Aurora R6; Win10 Home x64 1803; Office 365 x32
      i7-7700; GeForce GTX 1060; 16GB DDR4 2400; 1TB SSD, 256GB SSD, 4TB HD

      • #323132 Reply

        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        Lugh,

        I would agree with you that we can use “our own generators” if we like and not the power from the grid, metaphorically speaking.

        But Windows has been the dominant, world-wide, operating system not just for the mass market but for people that use PCs to do the scientific, engineering and administrative work that used to be done with mainframes, and this ability to do one’s own computing independently, in a decentralized way, has been a huge boon to business, scientific research and engineering (both for its operational and its research and development aspects), among other activities essential to the existence and prosperity of an advanced industrial society. This also means that there is a lot of application software intended to be used for such activities already developed only for Windows. For those activities, the change to a mostly mass-market oriented model is not good. PCs can be used as smartphones, but they are not smartphones. One can watch cat videos all day long with a laptop, but one can also develop algorithms for, let’s say, a specialized AI for medical diagnosis (or do both, but on alternate days). Window 10, with its promise of frequent (and it seems often trivial) “upgrades” and all the inevitable bugs that come with them, is something those non-cat-video watching activities I have mentioned above cannot handle very well. This means a serious disruption to important productive work for… what? Short term: good for MS (as the article explains). But longer term: bad for those of us who do not much care for cat videos. Or Candy Crush.

        And, to be clear, it is not just the “subscriber” mode of getting Windows I don’t like, although might be able to live with, but the relentlessly fast cadence of upgrades that is, in my opinion, the worst of these novel changes, because is what is likely to cause the trouble I have explained. And while we could all change, in principle, to LINUX or to Macs, the scale of such changeover, given the size of the “productive” PC market that MS has been both helping develop and taking care of for so long, would be very large and quite disrupting.

        2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #1492709 Reply

      Steve S
      AskWoody Lounger

      https://www.technewsworld.com/story/Microsoft-Becomes-Master-of-Its-Own-Linux-Kernel-86007.html

      What are your thoughts? Should we be scared? Is Windows on its way of becoming Open Source and thus Linux? Can microsoft be trusted not to destroy this like they are currently doing with 10 (IMO)?

       

      • #1496749 Reply

        OscarCP
        AskWoody Plus

        SteveS, I would not say that we should be scared, because I don’t believe that is a nice way to live. But worried, preoccupied and concerned about the future of MS, ourselves and the hyper-connected society in which we live and earn our daily crust, oh yes, definitely.

        Today we are using for earning that daily crust the means made available to us by a communications+computing  infrastructure that makes it possible what, half a century ago, would have been considered as (practically) indistinguishable from magic: being in nearly instantaneous contact with others living in all parts of the world, watching movies, the news (both moving pictures and sound) about events in both near and remote lands as they happen. Things like that, as actually shown on our computer screens and smart phones today, would make the animated pictures in the newspapers in Harry Potter’s movies or the ones in “2001 a Space Odyssey” look quaintly limited in their graphic display capabilities.

        There is a cartoon, variants of which were commonly seen some decades ago and, I think, now again in need to be brought to everyone’s frequent attention, of a man sitting, high up on the branch of a tree, and happily sawing it off between himself and the trunk. That is what I see is being done to many important aspects of what keeps societies like ours ticking, and it is all because of the greed and, or the exaggerated confidence on their own opinions and abilities of the people running the most important businesses of our day. A self-confidence boosted by the uncritical and fawning comments of their yes-men and their fanboys.

        Let me set aside the MS-Linux bromance for now, as it is centered on the needs (or convenience) of developers of applications for Windows, and let me consider, instead, Nadella and Co. push for making the Web the place where we are all supposed to be doing anything and everything. Now, consider the repeated, spectacularly horrific failures in protecting the integrity and safety of personal data of those services that, for whatever reason, aggregate such information in server farms that are, either poorly setup or, even worse, are properly setup. Because if they are well setup, that means the failures of the Web are intrinsic to the idea of the Web as a repository of important personal, business, government, you name it, information. This is what I would definitely call an unsustainable business model, that I expect one day will collapse under its own weight. Problem is, it will most likely collapse on us.

        So, SteveS: be concerned, be very concerned; be worried, be very worried. But be scared? Well, no… don’t let anything scare you. Too much.

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        • #1501877 Reply

          Ascaris
          AskWoody_MVP

          This was a topic for discussion over at The Register, where the comment section is pretty much always ten times better and more informative (if sometimes rancorous) than the article to which the comments refer.  There were a lot of thoughts on this, starting with many bringing up Microsoft’s oft-used strategy of embrace, extend, extinguish, which was then called FUD by others.  The response to that, in turn, was that expecting Microsoft to behave in that way isn’t FUD, but remembering history and (my paraphrase) being like the scorpion that stung the frog carrying him across the river because it was in his nature.

          The one that I found the most convincing was that Linus Torvalds is  a good gatekeeper as far as the Linux kernel goes, and he won’t let MS use its triple-E against the kernel that bears part of his name.

          I’ve bristled at the idea expressed by others that this is a kinder, gentler Microsoft than we’ve seen under Gates and Ballmer.  I don’t see MS as being particularly nice from my perspective as a consumer-level PC user.  Playing nice with its rivals but abusing its own customers isn’t an improvement if you are, or were, one of those customers!

          That said, though, I do think that it’s clear that change is going on, and we can only guess at what the eventual goals might be.  In the early 2000s, when IE commanded nearly the entire browser market, how many of us would have believed that MS would be exiting the full browser (meaning here the whole thing, including its own rendering engine) business, choosing instead to adopt an open-source engine with a MS front-end?  Yet that’s just what’s happening.

          MS does have a long history of triple-E, and I’m naturally suspicious that any foray into the Linux world will be for that purpose, but I don’t specifically smell a rat here.  I don’t think MS is any more interested in extinguishing Linux than it is in extinguishing Chromium.  It doesn’t seem that they particularly care about the desktop PC market anymore, so why would they put time and effort into trying to eliminate competition in a market that is increasingly irrelevant to the cloud-focused “new” Microsoft?  Maybe they’re trying to block that potential escape route so people will stay in the monetization line of fire longer, but that only makes Apple look that much better, not to mention Google (which would invariably swoop in with something if they smelled an opportunity).  If MS pushes too hard to eliminate competition with their 90% desktop market share, they’ll eventually wake the giant in the US government, just as they did (eventually) in the early 2000s.  I don’t think that’s their wish at this point.

          I do wonder if the goal is to re-roll Windows as a desktop environment that closely mimics Windows (and that can run Windows programs… think WINE, but with MS knowledge of Windows and MS funds) while resting on a Linux base, much as Apple did with OSX/MacOS and Unix.

          Apple chose not to use the Linux base because of the GPL and its hostility toward closed-source software, but Linux is a lot more developed than any of the other open-source *nixes on the PC market.  Without the limited hardware selection for which Apple needed drivers, the broad compatibility of Linux with a vast array of hardware becomes that much more important.  If anyone can figure out how to adopt Linux without running afoul of the GPL, it’s Microsoft.  Even if it does mean that they have to license some of their code under the GPL, it won’t really harm MS… making Linux stronger would make a Linux-based Windows stronger, and the money would be made on the cloud integration and support contracts, which would make money for them whether open-source or not.  When you factor in the cost savings of not having to develop and maintain the kernel as they do with Windows now, and it could be that they’re seeing this as a net gain compared to the existing, NT-core Windows.

          I don’t think MS has definitively made a decision on this yet.  I think they like to explore options and see how it goes to test the waters, then they take the next step that looks good from that perspective, and so on.  Is making Windows Linux-based one idea under consideration?  No way to know for sure, but I would guess yes.  Is it a definite plan for the future?  I would say no on that one.  It could actually end up being one of the best things to happen to Linux, or maybe the naysayers are right and it’s the worst.  Maybe it’s a case of wishful thinking, but my gut is leaning more toward the former.

          Group "L" (KDE Neon User Edition 5.16.4).

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          • #1617175 Reply

            mn–
            AskWoody Lounger

            Yeah, replacing the kernel under the Windows desktop and library APIs with Linux would indeed make all too much sense.

            And as long as it’s unambiguously a port of preexisting components, it cannot be a derivative of GPL-licensed software, thus no license contagion. The desktop environment as an “application suite” could then be the “Windows” product.

            You know, sort of like CDE for Linux used to be (until 2012).

            This would have definite benefits for Microsoft, but as they still could lock their things to only run on top of a specific builds of Linux, benefits to end users would entirely depend on specifics… oh yes, I can imagine… say, license terms, “Windows LX Home” run only on pre-signed kernels (with module version lock-in), buy “Windows LX Enterprise” and you can sign your own…

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