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Sunday, 29 November, 2020

The M$ X-perience

Date: 15 May, 2003

By: Chief

Imageell, by golly, it has been just slightly over a year and a half since Microsoft (M$) introduced to the public its latest operating system, or nightmare, call it what you will. XP has hit the retail market. Oh joy. Sheesh.

Bill Gates has called XP 'the most secure Windows ever' or words to that effect. Reality and Gates do not seem to get along all that well, says I.

Since the release of XP it appears from reading various tech-type websites that older versions of Windows are more secure than the new and highly touted XP. There are two reasons for this — first off, all the cracker types have a 'new' OS to play with and break or break-into and secondly, because of that the cracker types are no longer playing with the older versions of Windows as much. Lovely.

None of this is really earth shattering so why bring it up? Most people realize that if you use any M$ product you are taking your life, or at the very minimum your data, in your hands. Yet people do it anyway, so that is their problem when their computer or their data or both head south. I do not, in anyway, feel sorry for them. They brought the problem on themselves.

What is interesting is the issue that XP, while still under development, was broken into. As in the source code servers at M$ were broken into by crackers. That is a matter of public record. Was anything changed? Be it for the good, the bad, indifferent or nada? That part of the equation has never been fully, let alone truthfully, answered. In short, nobody factually knows.

The long and the short of it was that XP was compromised before it was ever released. How do you like them apples? Smells like rotten apples to me.

Now I really do not care if people still would want to purchase XP at its exorbitant price for whatever reason they think they may have. I just do not care. What bothers me is the marketing blitz which M$ and its 'partners', such as Dell, PC Club and numerous others have put forth. The whomever "recommends" M$ XP crap.

Why in the Sam Thump would any purportedly legitimate business want to attach their name to a product that:

It makes no sense whatsoever. A business, large or small, cannot afford to hang their hat on a hat rack made of shit. It smells for one thing and for another the business will never be able to completely get rid of the stench. Sooner or later said business will suffer, if only slightly, because of the stench. Customers will finally get tired of their computers crashing — the infamous blue screen of death — and/or being hijacked by some nefarious cracker or script kiddie.

It turns out, from what little I have been able to glean from various tech websites, that if a business becomes an M$ partner in one of the numerous contracts which said business must sign in order to play with the M$ ball — I believe it is the marketing contract, the business must, as in shall, insert in their ads or their marketing methods the whomever "recommends" M$ XP crap. As such they get a price break on the cost of M$ products.

On top of that, if you read the M$ End User License Agreement (EULA), you, the customer of the M$ product cannot, if you had a bad X-perience with an M$ product, go directly to M$ and demand your money back. No sir. You, the customer, must go to the business that sold you the M$ product and they have to deal with it. Good luck customer. You are going to need it.

It is a win - win situation for M$. They make gazillions in profit and are insulated from the wrath of angry customers because the business that sold the M$ product has to take the flak. For the M$ business 'partner' it is a lose - lose situation. While the business gets a price break on M$ products it in turn retails, that business still — has — to deal with, and possibly even satisfy, angry customers. And more often than not angry customers — talk. To their friends, businesses, etc. So an M$ business partner could actually lose business by entering into an agreement with M$. Not just because of the angry customer. But because of the angry customers mouth. And, let us not forget, the shoddy products produced by M$ in the first place.

Think I'm wrong? Take a look at the auto industry. The big three, GMC, Ford and Chrysler all came close to going out of business in the mid to late 1960's. That was and remains no laughing matter. Why? The imported cars were built much, much better. A better product at a lower price was damn near a death blow to the big three. Should fuel prices start heading into outer-space, sooner or later they will, the big three will face another problem — building an economic car that doesn't break down at a reasonable price. The big three auto makers have never been good at that.

M$ is just now starting to face the same sheet of music that the auto makers of the 60's did. The little import that is built better and comes at a cheaper price. GNU/Linux. Guess what? Just like the auto makers of the 60's M$ is choosing to ignore the little upstart. I, and I could be wrong, think that is a huge mistake on M$'s part. Only time will tell. But I know this for sure, GNU/Linux is already making inroads into the M$ server market and is starting to scratch the surface of the business and consumer desktop market. If things keep going as they appear to be, M$ is going to be in deep, deep trouble. Hah! It will serve them right.

A business can produce a crappy product and, unfortunately, people will buy it until a choice is made available. If that choice is a product that is better than the crappy product people will, over time, buy it and the maker of the crappy product will either start building good products or die. History teaches us that much. Apparently M$ failed history 101.

By the way, I use Debian GNU/Linux. Accept no substitute.

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