Lessons in EOL



  • So today I was looking up info on windiff, a useful tool on computers without BeyondCompare, and I encountered this gem, in spite of not being on an XP box:

    Now, knowing that giving the "LOL UR INSTALL IS 2 OLD, NUB, L2BUY UPGRADE!" speech to a customer is a delicate matter, I decided to see how an organization with the clout and resources of Microsoft would handle it...

    Windows XP is 12 years old—that’s pretty old for an operating system.
        In the past 12 years you’ve probably gotten a new phone, maybe a
    

    new TV, and possibly even a new car. Maybe it’s time for a new PC too,
    so you can make sure you have more memory and storage, faster processing
    speeds, and a higher-quality display (some even come with touch). And
    they’re less expensive than you might think.

    We support our older operating systems much longer than most other 
    

    businesses in this industry, but we can’t keep supporting old operating
    systems and still move forward creating new and better products. We’ve
    been supporting Windows XP for the past 12 years—that's longer than
    we've supported any other operating system in our history and already
    two years longer than the standard ten years of support we normally
    provide. It’s time for us to look ahead so we can create better products
    and services for you and all our customers.

    Okay, only slightly patronizing, but overall, a pretty fair and pragmatic statement that time does indeed march on. Not bad so far. Also, some computers even come with touch! Now you can enjoy the same error-prone input methods that you have to deal with on your phone and tablet on your desktop, too!

    Option 1: Keep using Windows XP—unprotected
                  While it's true that you can keep using your PC with 
    

    Windows XP after support ends, we don’t recommend it. For starters,
    it’ll become five times more vulnerable to security risks and viruses,
    which means you could get hacked and have your personal information
    stolen.

    All true, but slightly more patronizing.

    Option 2: Start using Windows 8.1
            If you don’t like the idea of your data and 
    

    personal information being hacked, or your PC's just not working like it
    used to, consider moving to Windows 8.1.

    The good ol' scare tactics plus false dilemma double whammy! At this point, we're probably at a 7 or 8 out of 10 on the patronage scale. And finally...

    If you can’t upgrade, it might be time to consider a new PC

    You'll be amazed at what a computer can do today.

    Did I miss some massive breakthrough in computer science after leaving school? I guess it sounds better than...

    You'll be amazed at all the eye candy (which you'll stop noticing in about a month) and change for the sake of change (which you'll mostly ignore) that we're able to cram into this release, thanks to what Andy giveth.

  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Groaner said:

    Did I miss some massive breakthrough in computer science after leaving school?

    Yes, you probably did. Take a 10-year-old Pentium 4 single-core with 1 gig of RAM, that will probably run XP...well, we'll be generous and say "tolerably". Try to put 7 or 8 on that, it'll probably run so horribly you'll want to slit the wrists of whoever came up with that idea.



  • I'm not really seeing those excerpts as patronising. Rather matter-of-fact, really.



  • @Groaner said:

    The good ol' scare tactics plus false dilemma double whammy! At this point, we're probably at a 7 or 8 out of 10 on the patronage scale. And finally...

    It might be a scare tactic, but it's not untrue.

    I don't get what the false dilemma here is.

    I also don't get why you think this is so patronizing. It sounds pretty reasonable to me.

    @Groaner said:

    Did I miss some massive breakthrough in computer science after leaving school?

    Massive breakthrough? No.

    Thousands of small, but important, refinements? Yes.

    Just going from 8.1 (what I have at home) to Windows 7 (what my workplace uses) was painful. I can't imagine what it would be like if I attempted to go back to XP. Not even to mention that XP doesn't support nice pieces of hardware like, say, SSD storage-- sure it works, kind of, but poor ignorant XP is likely to thrash the life out of it in only a few months.



  • Is that... Leigh Daniel "Danny Y. Sexbang" Avidan?

    Warning: NSFW lyrics:

    I Just Want To (Dance) - NSP – 02:35
    — Ninja Sex Party



  • @FrostCat said:

    Yes, you probably did. Take a 10-year-old Pentium 4 single-core with 1 gig of RAM, that will probably run XP...well, we'll be generous and say "tolerably". Try to put 7 or 8 on that, it'll probably run so horribly you'll want to slit the wrists of whoever came up with that idea.

    Note that I said "breakthrough in computer science." Last I checked, P=NP is still open, image recognition has gotten slightly better but is still far from perfect... you know, those sorts of things. A supercomputer of ten years ago with specs that match today's machines could probably meet the hardware requirements for 8.1 just fine. A statement like...

    You'll be amazed at what a computer can do today.

    implies that there's been a quantum leap.in what tasks computers are capable of accomplishing. What a computer can "do" is probably best described by available algorithms and computer science in general, and that hasn't changed all that much, except for...

    @blakeyrat said:

    Thousands of small, but important, refinements

    Now, that's not a very sexy slogan, but if the developer of a product I liked said that of an upgrade, I'd buy it!

    @trithne said:

    I'm not really seeing those excerpts as patronising. Rather matter-of-fact, really.

    They are matter-of-fact. I just take issue with the tone, but that might be because I'm jaded and technology is no longer magical.

    @blakeyrat said:

    I don't get what the false dilemma here is.

    • Option 1: Keep using Windows XP—unprotected
    • Option 2: Start using Windows 8.1

    A few options are missing from that list, like:

    • Option 3: Use Windows 7
    • Option 4: Wait for Windows 10
      ...
    • Option Q: Set your hair on fire

    @blakeyrat said:

    Just going from 8.1 (what I have at home) to Windows 7 (what my workplace uses) was painful. I can't imagine what it would be like if I attempted to go back to XP. Not even to mention that XP doesn't support nice pieces of hardware like, say, SSD storage-- sure it works, kind of, but poor ignorant XP is likely to thrash the life out of it in only a few months.

    A few months ago, I turned on my old PIII laptop (now a M.U.G.E.N. console) for the first time in years, which had Windows 2000 on it. It was a bit of a shock (doesn't even support WPA2), but I was able to remember how to get important files off of it.



  • @Groaner said:

    Option 3: Use Windows 7

    Well fair enough but...

    @Groaner said:

    Option 4: Wait for Windows 10

    How is that not the same thing as "keep using Windows XP--unprotected"?



  • @blakeyrat said:

    How is that not the same thing as "keep using Windows XP--unprotected"?

    It isn't, but I needed an option to pad the list out to Option Q. Option P, Use Wine, wasn't looking so hot.


  • SockDev

    @Groaner said:

    implies that there's been a quantum leap.in what tasks computers are capable of accomplishing. What a computer can "do" is probably best described by available algorithms and computer science in general, and that hasn't changed all that much

    also that what people do with computers.... how much of a computer does email solitaire and bookface take anyway?

    i would argue that 90+% of people never put any significant load on their systems at all..



  • I remember reading some old documentation (probably circa 2001) for one of the virtual instruments I use. They recommended having four computers networked to render the audio (e.g. one node renders brass instruments, another strings, etc.).

    I built this desktop in 2008* to be beefy enough to render everything in real time, and rarely did I get above 15-20% CPU on each core. Now, while engineering advances allowed me to replicate the processing power of four nodes as a single box, it's pretty much the same software sounding the instruments and mixing down the audio.

    *Yes, I know that's old. I'm building a new one this year once taxes are done and once I choose either a $200 220W AMD monster or a $300 Intel offering.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @blakeyrat said:

    Just going from 8.1 (what I have at home) to Windows 7 (what my workplace uses) was painful.

    Lots of us find going from 7 to 8.1 to be just as painful. I don't think any of those people are advocating for persisting with XP though...



  • @FrostCat said:

    Take a 10-year-old Pentium 4 single-core with 1 gig of RAM, that will probably run XP...well, we'll be generous and say "tolerably". Try to put 7 or 8 on that, it'll probably run so horribly you'll want to slit the wrists of whoever came up with that idea.

    So, those would be -- er -- your wrists?



  • Suicide is always the best answer.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Groaner said:

    Option 4: Wait for Windows 10

    No, this is option 1.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @Groaner said:

    a $300 Intel offering.

    A quick reminder--if you have access to Micro Center, certain Intel CPUs can be had there at a massive discount nobody else can beat.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    @da_Doctah said:

    So, those would be -- er -- your wrists?

    I'm not the one that came up with the idea; I'm merely repeating it.



  • Micro Center is fantastic. There's one about 15-20 minutes from where I live.


  • Discourse touched me in a no-no place

    Core i5 4690k and the matching i7's prices are far lower than basically anyone else, especially when you buy a motherboard with it, because there's a second discount. You can save over a hundred bucks.

    Of course if you aren't going to overclock, there's not a lot of point.



  • @Groaner said:

    I don't get what the false dilemma here is.

    Option 1: Keep using Windows XP—unprotected
    Option 2: Start using Windows 8.1

    Option 3: Start using Windows 7.
    Options 5-9: Start using a BSD.
    Options 10-40: Start using a Linux.
    Option 41: Start using ReactOS. (ha!)
    Option 42: Set your PC on fire and throw it into the sea.
    ...



  • @Intercourse said:

    Lots of us find going from 7 to 8.1 to be just as painful

    How? Other than the stupid Start screen thing (which can easily be made to go away thanks to Classic Shell) they're not really that different. Not in a way that becomes a pain.

    @Groaner said:

    Option 3: Use Windows 7

    Right - except that isn't the current version. Why would a software company say "Hey, move from this 14 year old OS to this 6 year old OS which is effectively 2 versions back from our current version". You can't get Windows 7 from all of the channels you can get Windows 8.1.

    @Groaner said:

    Option 4: Wait for Windows 10

    That's basically option 1 - stay on XP unprotected for a few more months.

    This is all a big non-issue. Company selling software wants people to not be using a 14 year old version they don't support and buy their current version. Shocker.



  • @loopback0 said:

    How? Other than the stupid Start screen thing (which can easily be made to go away thanks to Classic Shell) they're not really that different. Not in a way that becomes a pain.

    The new booting thing is annoying. I can't remember what it is. But Windows and Linux have been fighting over that since I got this machine, and I CBA to re-enable Windows to boot up. And since the new way of doing things in 8(.1) is annoying, I'm not terribly motivated.

    The updates just keep piling up, so that's another thing to dread.



  • UEFI?­



  • Yeah, that's the one. I think my system is currently doing what my BIOS calls "legacy" booting.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @loopback0 said:

    How? Other than the stupid Start screen thing (which can easily be made to go away thanks to Classic Shell) they're not really that different. Not in a way that becomes a pain.

    I have not tried Classic Shell, but I find 8.1 to be a usability/UI nightmare on conventional desktop without touch screen and with multiple monitors. Either I am trying to access Control Panel or something else through that stupid side bar thing and I have to hold my mouse cursor in one very specific spot on the joint between monitors, or I am just trying to park my cursor out of the way and the stupid sidebar thing pops up. <I know it is called the charm bar, but I call it the stupid sidebar, because it is a stupid fucking sidebar>

    Hyper-V is nearly useless as it pertains to my usage, and when I installed VS2013 it was installed and killed my VMWare Workstation, that never worked properly after that even after dumping Hyper-V. Hyper-V is not an immersive experience. (nice parser screwup italicizing everything I type now, @discoursebot)

    There is no compelling reason for me to switch to 8.1. 7 does everything that I need it to and there is not a single feature that I need from 8.1. The only thing I might want would be Storage Spaces, but I take care of all of the heavy storage on the server-side. I really see no cause to upgrade. 8.1 is like Discodevelopment, fiddling just to fiddling and nothing but UI changes that no one asked for.



  • @Intercourse - Last Day Without A Discourse Bug: null

    <!-- Posted by SockBot 0.13.0 "Devious Boris" on Tue Jan 06 2015 12:26:08 GMT+0000 (UTC)-->

  • kills Dumbledore

    @Intercourse said:

    access Control Panel

    right click the start menu

    @Intercourse said:

    have to hold my mouse cursor in one very specific spot on the joint between monitors

    Top right corner, which is slightly sticky, then down. It's a bit weird but relatively easy once you get used to it. Not that I ever actually use the sidebar thingy anyway



  • @FrostCat said:

    Try to put 7 or 8 on that, it'll probably run so horribly you'll want to slit the wrists of whoever came up with that idea.

    Actually, no. In my experience, any box that will run XP will run 7 as well or better. 7 is a considerable improvement over Vista in that regard.

    Don't have enough experience with 8 on old hardware to say one way or the other; it's not something I would even contemplate installing myself, so I only get to be enraged by it on customer machines and those are mostly new enough to have come with it by default.


  • kills Dumbledore

    @flabdablet said:

    any box that will run XP will run 7 as well or better

    My first experience on 7 was a 1.1GHz AMD Duron, with 512MB of RAM IIRC. Can confirm it worked fine


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @Jaloopa said:

    right click the start menu

    I know, but there is more than one way to get there and if you try to use the most common way on multiple non-touschscreen monitors, it sucks. They designed a tablet UI and then shoehorned it in to a desktop OS. It works fine on a single-monitor, even though it is still something entirely for touchscreens. But on a triple monitor setup the UX is shit if you try to use that functionality.

    It is just more of the "everything is a phone" mentality that is pervading software. I am not using a phone/tablet. I am using a desktop, so give me a desktop experience. Even MS seems to realize this is a train wreck on desktop, which is why we are seeing the functionality change back in 10. At least they are keeping to their "every other OS version is shit" track record.



  • @loopback0 said:

    Other than the stupid Start screen thing (which can easily be made to go away thanks to Classic Shell) they're not really that different. Not in a way that becomes a pain.

    Compared to what's in 7, The Network and Sharing Center in 8.x is dumbed down to the point of uselessness. Connecting to wireless networks fails in inscrutable ways. Libraries seem to have gone away. It's increasingly hard to avoid needing to create a useless Hotmail account just to use your own PC. 8.x seems to find many more ways for persistent boot failures to occur than 7 did and the associated diagnostic "aids" are about as desirable as actual AIDS. Aero is prettier than 8.x's apparent reversion to Windows 3.11 Pastel Edition. Choosing an avatar for your user account involves a Metro-mode POS that doesn't even show thumbnails of the pictures in the folders you browse with it. Metro and hot corners and hot edges and reliance on magical undiscoverable keyboard shortcuts make the UI a clusterfuck: the only thing that makes 8.x even vaguely tolerable is Classic Shell and similar.

    There is nothing in 8.x that works better enough than 7 to make any rational person choose 8.x if given 7 as an alternative option. It is absolutely Windows ME 2012 and once 10 reaches RTM, 8.x will be swept under the carpet of Windows history every bit as quickly.


  • kills Dumbledore

    @flabdablet said:

    There is nothing in 8.x that works better enough than 7 to make any rational person choose 8.x if given the choice

    I like the new Explorer and Task Manager. Not enough to want to dump 7 on my home machine and move to 8 (planning on building a new machine once 10 comes out), but there are improvements



  • @Intercourse said:

    At least they are keeping to their "every other OS version is shit" track record.


    Filed Under: blakeybait



  • @Intercourse said:

    They designed a tablet UI and then shoehorned it in to a desktop OS.

    That's not shoehorning; more like overinflation. Keyboard + mouse + buttons + wheel is a much more capable set of controls than a touch screen.



  • @flabdablet said:

    Metro and hot corners and hot edges and reliance on magical undiscoverable keyboard shortcuts make the UI a clusterfuck

    I can't understand how this sort of stuff made it in there. These guys supposedly do lots of user testing. I'm not sure I believe that any more.



  • @Jaloopa said:

    I like the new Explorer and Task Manager

    The extra detail available in the Task Manager and Resource Manager are welcome, but I loathe the 8.x Explorer. Fucking thing is always trying to help but it almost always fails to grasp that I neither need nor want its help because I know what I'm fucking doing. It feels like it's haunted by the ghost of Clippy.

    If I want context sensitive menus I will fucking ask for them with a right-click. Leave the fucking main menu bar alone, you cunts.



  • @Intercourse said:

    Hyper-V is nearly useless as it pertains to my usage, and when I installed VS2013 it was installed and killed my VMWare Workstation, that never worked properly after that even after dumping Hyper-V. Hyper-V is not an immersive experience.

    I wasn't a fan of Hyper-V - it's not the same seamless experience as VMWare or VirtualBox, and it breaks the 64-bit virtualisation in VirtualBox so it got removed.

    @Intercourse said:

    There is no compelling reason for me to switch to 8.1. 7 does everything that I need it to and there is not a single feature that I need from 8.1.

    I agree - I'm on 8.1 because it came with this laptop (and my previous one). I thought we were talking about switching between them (7 at work, 8.1 at home) rather than switching the same machine from 7 to 8.



  • @flabdablet said:

    It's increasingly hard to avoid needing to create a useless Hotmail account just to use your own PC.

    Unless you want to use OneDrive, it's easy to avoid it, even with Office 366.

    @flabdablet said:

    Libraries seem to have gone away.

    In Explorer: View -> Navigation -> Show Libraries. Why it's off is beyond me though.

    @flabdablet said:

    8.x seems to find many more ways for persistent boot failures to occur than 7 did and the associated diagnostic "aids" are about as desirable as actual AIDS. Aero is prettier than 8.x's apparent reversion to Windows 3.11 Pastel Edition. Choosing an avatar for your user account involves a Metro-mode POS that doesn't even show thumbnails of the pictures in the folders you browse with it. Metro and hot corners and hot edges and reliance on magical undiscoverable keyboard shortcuts make the UI a clusterfuck: the only thing that makes 8.x even vaguely tolerable is Classic Shell and similar.

    Metro, hot corners/edges and that shit gets disabled in about 30 seconds and falls under:
    @loopback0 said:
    Other than the stupid Start screen thing

    I don't find anything else making it an actual pain to use.

    @flabdablet said:

    There is nothing in 8.x that works better enough than 7 to make any rational person choose 8.x if given the choice.

    Maybe not to upgrade from 7 to 8.1, but to upgrade from XP it does considering that 7 (except Pro) has technically passed retail end of sales and it doesn't ship OEM any more.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @loopback0 said:

    I agree - I'm on 8.1 because it came with this laptop (and my previous one). I thought we were talking about switching between them (7 at work, 8.1 at home) rather than switching the same machine from 7 to 8.

    Is there really a practical difference?

    I tried to make the switch. I really did. When I built my new desktop and setup my new laptop, I loaded them both with 8.1 Enterprise to gain some experience with them. I gave it an honest shot for ~2 months. Now I have a newer laptop and a brand new desktop that I rarely use and I always reach for my old Vostro 3700 with Win7 on it when I need to get shit done.

    If I need to do any dev work, I still go to the desktop. Not because 8.1 is superior, but only because that is what is on the desktop and it has 3 monitors. I prefer Win7 and having used them both I find Win7 to have the superior UI on every level. 8.1 just feels like...a Mac, and I feel like Apple products condescend to their users. That is what 8.1 feels like. As though it is condescending to the user. It is not a pleasant experience for me.

    The only reason I have not loaded Win7 on my two newer machines is simply because I am waiting for 10 and then we can leave the 8/8.1 clusterfuck behind us.


  • kills Dumbledore

    @Intercourse said:

    I feel like Apple products condescend to their users

    Having used OSX in the 10.3/10.4 days, and recently had a play on something with the latest version, I feel like Apple has really fucked up in trying to keep a simplified interface while adding lots of features. I couldn't even work out how to see the open windows of the current application, something that was a single F-key press with old Expose


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @loopback0 said:

    7 (except Pro) has technically passed retail end of sales and it doesn't ship OEM any more.

    Not true. You can still get 7 through OEM. You almost certainly cannot walk in to a Fry's or Best Buy and purchase a machine with 7, but Dell, Toshiba, Lenovo and others still offer it as an option as business customers are still buying it. I ordered 5 laptops as recently as ~Dec 15th from Dell with 7 on them. None of our customers have any desire at all to move to 8/8.1. They see it as the modern Vista/ME, which is to say that they think it is shit.


  • SockDev

    @Intercourse said:

    They see it as the modern Vista/ME, which is to say that they think it is shit

    much as i am enjoying the 8.1 experience i can see where they arre comming from. i've been playing around with the tech preview of 10 and it is MUCH better than 8.1 in many ways.

    like being able to flipping put those Metro UIModern UI apps into actual desktop windows and not forcing them to be fullscreen all the time (or vertical split, i do know about that, but it's not the same as windowed!)


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @accalia said:

    like being able to flipping put those Metro UIModern UI apps into actual desktop windows and not forcing them to be fullscreen all the time (or vertical split, i do know about that, but it's not the same as windowed!)

    Most of the time when a company decides to revolutionize the way we do things, they produce a pile of :hankey:. Not always, sometimes they hit it out of the park and it becomes the new way to do things. This was not one of those times.



  • @Intercourse said:

    Is there really a practical difference?

    Yes - when you're constantly using the two, then you're constantly dealing with any differences between the two. When you switch for good, you've dealt with them initially then sort of forget them.


  • kills Dumbledore

    @accalia said:

    like being able to flipping put those Metro UIModern UI apps into actual desktop windows and not forcing them to be fullscreen all the time

    That would bother me if I ever used any Moderntro apps, and is a big symptom of the Phone brainworms.

    While playing around with Metrern stuff, I have discovered that you can right click the Desktop from the task switcher thingy and close it. AFAICT, all it does is remove it from the task switcher, rather than actually closing anything. Weird



  • @Intercourse said:

    business customers

    Would business customers not fall under Pro or Enterprise? I excluded Pro specifically as that is available, and assume (probably incorrectly) that Enterprise is only available under volume/MSDN.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @loopback0 said:

    When you switch for good, you've dealt with them initially then sort of forget them.

    I switched for good and gave it ~2 months. My Win7 machines sat there gathering dust on the shelf. Then one night I had enough and grabbed my old Vostro 3700. All of my day to day work was on 8.1 and the whole experience was shit. Even the installation sucked. Oh, I have to find the hidden option to not use their shitty login system? On the Enterprise version? How many 8.1 Enterprise installs are not going to be on a freaking domain? The only time that would be helpful is on the Home versions of the OS.

    There was just too much :hankey: for me to be able to...

    @loopback0 said:

    sort of forget them.

    So now I am back on Win7 and waiting for 10.


  • SockDev

    @Intercourse said:

    company decides to revolutionize the way we do things,

    the idea behind Metro UIModern UI was of course a good one. as was the idea to unify desktop/laptop and tablet experience.

    it might have worked if M$ got more hardware manufacturers onboard quickly and didn't make a couple of key gaffes.

    they produced something that was... unique, but that was about it. but then follow the pattern for desktop OS from windows.

    8/8.1: Critically panned failure
    7: fracking amaxing
    Vista: why was that released?
    XP: WOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOO!
    ME: programmed by people attempting and failing to reach the balmer peak
    98/98SE: niiiiiice
    95: meh.... whatever. not great but not terrible
    3.1: yessssssss

    .... i'd go on but that's as far back as my windows experience goes. before that all i have experience with is offbrand dos-compatible os thing that played Commander Keen and a fun kong game where you threw exploding bananas at the other kong to be king kong.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @loopback0 said:

    Would business customers not fall under Pro or Enterprise?

    Yes, my apologies. I missed that (most important) part.

    @loopback0 said:

    assume (probably incorrectly) that Enterprise is only available under volume/MSDN.

    You are correct about that.


  • Grade A Premium Asshole

    @accalia said:

    but then follow the pattern for desktop OS from windows.

    You missed 2000, which was for the most part just an earlier, less pretty version of XP. Or, you just lumped them together like I usually do. :)


  • SockDev

    wasn't 2k a server OS? i only listed Desktop OS there and was pretty sure 2k was a server OS.


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