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Windows Vista will have new antipiracy technology that locks people out their PCs if the operating system isn't activated within 30 days after installation.
If Vista is not activated with a legitimate product registration key in time, the system will run in "reduced functionality mode" until it is activated, said Thomas Lindeman, a senior product manager at Microsoft. In this mode, people will be able to use a Web browser for up to an hour, after which time the system will log them out, he said.
Microsoft To Lock Pirates Out Of Vista PCs [news.com.com]
In 1982, my sister's sandwich toaster literally exploded in a blue flash (I was there). It was two years old and out of guarantee, but when I pointed out that the cable inlet was screwed to the hotplate rather than the case (a blatant design/manufacturing flaw) an offer to replace followed immediately.
Incidentally, car manufacturers understand perfectly well that if a (safety critical) manufacturing fault is discovered all affected cars have to be recalled and repaired at zero cost even if the fault is not identified within the guarantee period.
I accept that this principle has not been tested in court with respect to software.
instead of trying to squeeze every possible grand out of us all...
That mantra getting REALLY old (I assume that MS is capable of multitasking - that is working on more than one thing at a time?)
And it sounds like you are in favor of software piracy.
For business use, 98SE or 2000 is just fine.
That IS a joke, right?
98 won't even open or run half the programs now being sold, and it is probably THE worst version ever for business.
[edited by: Wlauzon at 1:20 am (utc) on Oct. 6, 2006]
The best example of this I can think of is when multiple monitors were introduced (in 98 I think). If you want your software to be able to take advantage of multiple monitors whilst still running on older systems, you have to take special measures (but it's pretty easy - I know, I've done it).
Win98 SE is still the minimum requirement for most software and it works pretty well. However, to be fair, it is old and I plan to stop supporting it myself in the software that I write.
Good point about old copies of Windows helping them with market share. Windows great strength is that nearly everyone has a copy (legal or illegal). Take that away and it opens the door (to your local Mac store ;) ).
The other thing that always amazes me is that on the one hand Microsoft is trying to squeeze every penny possible out of everyone and on the other hand Bill Gates is giving it away. Don't get me wrong, I think Bill's charity is a good thing but it seems to me they could save themselves some time by just charging everyone less for windows, give copies of windows away to charities, researchers (one way to support cancer research), and poor users, and also not being such sticklers about piracy. Most people who try to pirate windows don't do it because they want to, they do it because it's overpriced and they can't afford it.
Most people who try to pirate windows don't do it because they want to, they do it because it's overpriced and they can't afford it.
The fact is 97% of all copied software/music ... would not have bought the software if they couldn't get a pirate versionas someone pointed out earlier, 95% of "pirates" would never buy Windows for $150.
mm120: Where did these percentage figures come from?
From an average salary in these countries (and also living and seeing people in these countries); for some of them $150 is a monthly salary, and IN NO WAY, SHAPE OR FORM IT WILL BE SPENT ON SOFTWARE.
As far as "good doer Bill", I wouldn't keep my hopes up too high...there were many people before him who created "Charities" and "Foundations". Most of the times it is done to avoid taxation and preserve capital within family. Carefully crafted by lawyers (an Billy has plenty) "foundations" typically have very little to no accountability. I bet Billy will save way more tax-free money then he ever publicly claim to donate. JMHO.
[edited by: aleksl at 12:03 am (utc) on Oct. 7, 2006]
That's the supply & demand curve isn't it? Microsoft would need to sell more units to make up for the reduction in price, but where are the additional PCs going to come from? Ex-pirates? Macintosh? That's a risky proposition and Microsoft could in fact be less profitable if they reduced their price. Someone at Microsoft has probably crunched the numbers and has figured out the best price for their profits.
The charity aspect is VERY real. Over $70 million at one specific charity I know of from the inside. *AND* they got IBM and CISCO to kick in the hardware.
Makes GOOGLE look like a bunch of pikers.
don't doubt that. except for this:
2006 Revenue (ttm) - $44Bln
2006 Gross profit - $36Bln
Microsoft, SEC filing
2006 revenue - $44Bln (same)
2006 profit - $16Bln (my god, $20Bln dollars disappeared? or went to "charities"?)
Quarterly earnings growth -23% (falling big time? stock doesn't seem to care)
There are at least two sources that Microsoft related charitable works come from, Microsoft Inc. and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Only the Microsoft Inc. amounts are "on book".
If you are from outside of North America, you may not be familiar with the difference in numbers from different reporting sources. Notice that the first profit number you gave is GROSS, not NET. Also, there are very specific requirements for SEC filings, think GAAP. Then, there is a third set of numbers to satisfy the IRS.
The FACT remains that the cheque was cut and it was delivered.
Furthermore, William Buffett of Berkshire Industries fame, is a pretty smart cookie, has access to a raft of advisors, and he chose to entrust the foundation with his charitable works.
So, GOOGLE gives away a few scholarships from the pennies left over after outfitting the aerial equivalent of the Playboy Mansion. Pah! Pikers!
but where are the additional PCs going to come from?
Since the manufacturing costs are very low and the retails costs are very high, it is easy to imagine a 50% reduction in price yielding a 200% increase in sales (with a little advertising) and therefore increased profits.
Most manufacturers that sell goods to the public use special offers and promotions to sell more goods and, in part, to help judge the best price for goods (to maximize revenue). However, I don't remember Microsoft ever having a sale or whatever. Instead, they take the view that they have a virtual monopoly and prefer to wring as much money out of people by brute force.
Now that's a statement. Let's see if it actually makes sense: Bill is giving away 95% of his wealth to preserve capital for his family? Are you serious? Assuming that the current tax laws stay--and many belive that the "Death Tax" will actually be abolished--in place his children would have to pay 55%, and that is after Bill or his wife died (in 40 - 60 years). Think of how more the shares will be worth by then via stock price increases, dividends, buybacks, company splits into several new ones, and so on.
Look it's OK to hate Gates, Buffet, Google or MSFT but to go into nonsensical tirades and assume that everything one person does is bad, that is not fair nor right. See: [google.com...]
With that number of users, in the hundreds of millions, even if they had a 99.99% reliability rate for the piracy lockout system, you're talking massive numbers of legitimate users (including some in major companies) locked out unfairly.
In order to avoid massive amounts of extremely bad publicity, Microsoft won't just have to do a good job on the lockout scheme, they have to do a close-to-perfect job, which is an impossible task.
It wouldn't be so bad if other OSes did this, but they don't, and without the OS working you can't run all the other software you've bought legitimately.