Microsoft has distanced itself from plans to cease offering an XP downgrade option six months after Windows 7, the successor to its successor, ships – instead extending support for the OS to 2011.
As reported over on Electronista
, Microsoft has listened to the concerns – and scathing critisicms – of industry analysts that saw the move to end support for downgrading to the still-popular Windows XP operating system after six months of the launch of the next-next-generation OS Windows 7.
With concerns being raised over whether large-scale enterprise deployments of Windows XP would have enough time to get their houses in order before support was withdrawn, business were getting increasingly worried as the Windows 7 launch date grows ever closer – despite moves by Microsoft to introduce some level of [url=http://www.bit-tech.net/news/bits/2009/04/27/windows-xp-embedded-into-windows-7/1compatibility[/eurl] between the two operating systems.
In order to reassure its business customers, Microsoft has announced plans to extend the downgrade support for a whole eighteen months after Windows 7 launches – or until the first service pack for the operating system is available, whichever should come first.
While this gives companies some breathing room – all new PCs purchased within this timeframe will be able to be downgraded to Windows XP without breaching the terms and conditions of the licence – it still gives Microsoft the opportunity to pull the rug out from under peoples' feet: any time it feels that the XP downgrade option is proving too popular and hurting Windows 7 adoption figures it merely has to launch a Windows 7 Service Pack, fulfilling the latter part of its promise.
Do you believe that Microsoft will allow its customers the full eighteen months grace period for exercising their downgrade rights, or will it sneak an early service pack in to slam the doors? Share your thoughts over in the forums