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Ballmer: XP will stay if customers want it

Ballmer: XP will stay if customers want it

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said that the software giant may re-evaluate its plans to stop shipping Windows XP on 30th June if demand from customers is there.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said that the software giant may re-evaluate its plans to stop shipping Windows XP to customers and system builders on 30th June if its customer feedback changes.

"XP will hit an end-of-life. We have announced one. If customer feedback varies, we can always wake up smarter, but right now, we have a plan for end-of-life for new XP shipments, said Ballmer in a news conference on Thursday.

Ballmer made it clear that most retailers and PC makers are now choosing Vista over XP, and he said that most consumers are also purchasing Vista these days. While that may be true, Ballmer neglected to mention the fact that Windows XP is becoming harder and harder to find.

System builders are still scheduled to stop selling machines with Windows XP installed by the end of June, although technical support will be available to XP customers until April 2009 and what Microsoft calls "extended support" will continue until April 2014.

It's important to note that Ballmer hasn't said that Microsoft is going to extend the availability of Windows XP and he certainly hasn't given any guarantees. A lot of things would have to change for Windows XP to continue to be available for most users after 30th June – although it will be available for ultra-low-cost PCs like the Asus Eee PC.

Ballmer did acknowledge that there are still markets for XP. In particular, he referenced businesses and explained that IT departments often have to work with older machines that are unable to run Vista.

Do you think Microsoft will extend XP availability beyond 30th June? Share your thoughts in the forums.

20 Comments

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Paradigm Shifter 25th April 2008, 15:09 Quote
Only problem I can see with this is that they'll go by how many copies XP continues to sell. People buying pre-built PCs will get ones with Vista - not because they like Vista more than XP (chances are they won't much of a clue about either). With Microsoft selling copies of Vista to OEMs cheaper than XP, the OEMs will pass on that extra cost to the purchaser. This will result in the purchaser opting (most likely) for the cheaper option, which would be Vista.

Other issue is that the people who don't really want to shift to Vista likely already have copies of XP, and won't want to be buying more copies than they need.

So Microsoft win either way.
Kierax 25th April 2008, 15:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Paradigm Shifter
Only problem I can see with this is that they'll go by how many copies XP continues to sell. People buying pre-built PCs will get ones with Vista - not because they like Vista more than XP (chances are they won't much of a clue about either). With Microsoft selling copies of Vista to OEMs cheaper than XP, the OEMs will pass on that extra cost to the purchaser. This will result in the purchaser opting (most likely) for the cheaper option, which would be Vista.

Other issue is that the people who don't really want to shift to Vista likely already have copies of XP, and won't want to be buying more copies than they need.

So Microsoft win either way.

Nicely put.
Squadexodus 25th April 2008, 15:19 Quote
Can we still buy keys for the software? I have the disk.
DriftCarl 25th April 2008, 15:28 Quote
I guess it goes to show how good XP really has been tuned out to be. Becuase of its super long life, there are now hundreds of thousands of forum threads around the internet for exery possible problem that could happen to your windows XP install. google is like an extended windows XP manual now.
zoom314 25th April 2008, 16:24 Quote
If customers still want XP? Are they Nutz? Of course people still want XP, XP works fine, Improvements to the video driver to enable DirectX 10 could possibly be made in XP, I mean why reinvent the Wheel MS? Some users will get tired of Vista and have either turned off UAC making Vista into little more than a gussied up XP or just gone back to XP. Besides not all hardware will run under Vista. And there are people Who can't buy Your new shiny OS, Like Me and I have 5 PCs with XP loaded on them, 4 in XP Pro x64 and one in XP Pro(x32), So It would be quite expensive for Me to upgrade. I won't even get into much about Apples campaign to woo XP users to the MAC which has grown their share of the computer market to about 14% from around 4%. Oh and to You overclockers, MACs aren't overclockable at all as the Firmware won't allow It.
yakyb 25th April 2008, 16:57 Quote
if it goes EOL are we allowed to Pirate it?????

hypothetically speaking?
Paolo 25th April 2008, 17:53 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by yakyb
if it goes EOL are we allowed to Pirate it?????

hypothetically speaking?

Ah, no. As you mention - it's still `piracy' even although MS don't sell it any more.

By the same token, another company couldn't just grab an XP iso from the web after EOL and start spinning off copies for profit (legally)...
quack 25th April 2008, 18:14 Quote
No. Don't be silly. It'll still be under US copyright for a ridiculous number of years.
Penrhos 25th April 2008, 18:14 Quote
I'd have loved to buy XP Pro with my new laptop but couldn't find anywhere that would sell me it without Vista on.

I benchmarked it with Vista - out of box & with all the crap turned off - Aero etc.... and it was much quicker.

Then as a test I stuck XP Pro on and it was subtantially quicker, I'd be running XP if I could but there are no XP drivers for some of the hardware inside. Vista is just bloatware - supposedly more secure but still bloatware. Why should an o/s need to use almost 50% of one core of a CPU and need two gigs of ram to run when I can run Windows 2003 Server or XP-Pro for half the overhead.

At work we are using XP Fundimentals on most of our desktop kit because out of over 3000 PC's only a handfull are Vista compatible. All new kit is downgraded to XP (if possible) as we do not see any future in deploying Vista into the corperate environment for the forseable future.
Breach 25th April 2008, 18:26 Quote
"System builders are still scheduled to stop selling machines with Windows XP installed"

As I remember companies like Dell did this, and went back to selling XP along with Vista

Come on MS, no one wants Vista, admit it and hurry up with Windows 7
Blassster 25th April 2008, 20:02 Quote
I used to work at a place like Radio Shack in the fall, and almost every computer customer was disappointed and/or angry that we only sold vista machines.
Tyinsar 25th April 2008, 21:38 Quote
Personally I'd like to see a switch to a pure 64-bit OS - with XP as an included component run in virtualization.

Sadly I'm starting to agree with those that claim Vista is like Windows 3.0 / 95 / ME - all quickly surpassed by 3.11 / 98SE / XP - even as far back as my DOS days I skipped from 3.3 to 5 since 4 was a mess.
DXR_13KE 25th April 2008, 21:53 Quote
XP dies and i need a XP licence and i can't get it... then i will simply put linux in it.

edit: i also consider that Vista is very good.
Tyinsar 25th April 2008, 22:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DXR_13KE
edit: i also consider that Vista is very good.
Agreed, I have it on one of my machines and have not had any issues at all - However, with the plan for Windows 7 so soon it feels like Vista is merely a half step to something else.
koola 25th April 2008, 22:57 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tyinsar
However, with the plan for Windows 7 so soon it feels like Vista is merely a half step to something else.

Quick OS 10.5 is shipping, get Windows 7 and a half (codename Vista) RTM!

crazybob 26th April 2008, 00:46 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penrhos
I benchmarked it with Vista - out of box & with all the crap turned off - Aero etc.... and it was much quicker.

Then as a test I stuck XP Pro on and it was subtantially quicker, I'd be running XP if I could but there are no XP drivers for some of the hardware inside. Vista is just bloatware - supposedly more secure but still bloatware. Why should an o/s need to use almost 50% of one core of a CPU and need two gigs of ram to run when I can run Windows 2003 Server or XP-Pro for half the overhead.
Did you disable Windows Defender, as well? It's the biggest resource hog on a clean Vista install. Apparently, Defender slows general use by 10% and disk access by over 50%. Disable it, and everything runs as smoothly as XP. And don't claim that you've just negated all the benefits of Vista; it's only an antivirus program. There's still quite a bit more security underneath which doesn't kill your performance.

I quite like Vista, actually. It's not compelling enough to switch from my perfectly good XP install (I'm pretty lazy and what I have works well) but I also don't consider it some horrible curse. If my computer currently had Vista on it, I'd be just as happy.
Kipman725 26th April 2008, 13:29 Quote
well react OS and wine along with debian looks like it will be system of choice in the future. I currently run winowsXP/ubuntu duel boot atm.
johnnyboy700 28th April 2008, 10:00 Quote
I recently bought a new laptop, took an image of the hard drive and scrubbed Vista in favour of XP Pro. That way If I have to return it I can restore the drive to its original state. Vista isn't too bad but I'm still keeping XP as I simply prefer it, I'll stick with it until I'm forced to change.
I kind of think that Microsoft seem to be listening to the public regarding the future of XP but they are making it as difficult as possible. Probably because they don't want to have to make a humiliating climb down and go back a step with a major event like Vista, I guess we'll just have to wait and see.
completemadness 28th April 2008, 15:18 Quote
Quote:
Ballmer made it clear that most retailers and PC makers are now choosing Vista over XP
What do you expect? MS have said they cant get hold of it after a certain time

The companies have to start trying to sell it, otherwise consumers will realize, and ask - why aren't they selling it? (and then realize how much a POS it is)
Not forgetting they need to get some kind of support base setup
Quote:
and he said that most consumers are also purchasing Vista these days.
As more and more MS software is for Vista, and DX10 only its not surprising

Not forgetting the fact XP prices are rising and its harder to find copies as MS tries to kill it off
mayakovski 28th April 2008, 23:02 Quote
"Ballmer made it clear that most retailers and PC makers are now choosing Vista over XP."

Man, that must be some real good stuff they are smoking down in Redmond.
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