Friday, April 4, 2008

More news of interest

I swear I have no plans to become just another news linking site, but there's just been so much notable Vista related news these days! I found today's news on the pages of Slashdot and Digg and thought I'd better post it before it slides off the front pages into history...

1) c|net has a commentary on the latest stats from W3Counter. The commentary is focused on the 65% growth of Linux's market share which now stands at just 2.01%. That may not sound like much until you consider that Windows Vista only commands 6.48%. I find the Vista story far more interesting. When you consider the product has been out for over a year - when you consider how many copies Microsoft claims it has sold - when you consider all the money, marketing and leverage Microsoft can throw at the product - it's barely got triple Linux's penetration! I don't care what you think - that's significant. Remember those numbers when we check back next year. There should be a very interesting story to tell. BTW, have I mentioned that I'd like my next blog to be about an enterprise Microsoft IT guy that explores Linux and figures out how to support it in an enterprise environment? (If only I had the time.)

2) The Industry Standard has big news that Microsoft extends XP through 2010 for ultra-low-cost laptops. This only applies to Windows XP Home edition, but it is significant nonetheless. In my opinion its the first crack in the floodgates of an extension for XP beyond the June deadline. At any rate it's an admission by Microsoft that they don't have a current product for that market segment and can't bear to just hand it to Linux on a silver platter.

3) There's a great article for those of you who are able to save licensing dollars by buying Vista upgrade licenses. Windows Secrets has the article It's official: upgrade hack included in Vista SP1. At first I wasn't interested because Scott is just going on about how to defeat the validation scheme - not something I could consider. But near the end of the article he raises some very good points about why you would even want to use the trick if you are doing things legally. (I'm about to ruin the punchline so you might want to stop reading now and check out the link.) Basically, Vista doesn't allow you to prove you have a prior license just by sticking in an install disk - it instead insists that the install be run from the qualifying upgradeable product. Not good if you want to have a fresh start in the world. The trick involves installing Vista without a license key and then using that install to launch the install again - using Vista as the qualifying product! Great hack that blows Microsoft's validation scheme to hell but which really improves life for those legal users as well.

4) BTW, my contract with my current client will be coming to an end in a few weeks (end of April). Since my travails for my client's Vista implementation are inspiration for this blog's stories, I do wonder how I'll keep this thing going. Hopefully I can find another client in this town with an interest in Vista. If any of you have suggestions for possible leads, please drop me a line.

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