M$ Flailing, Not Sailing

Comment seen on The Register about M$’s planned “update” to “8” fixing the damned GUI. At time of writing, upvotes totalled 44 and downvotes totalled 52. The Register has trolls too …
“MS wants to destroy the old classic windows in favour of a metro interface. That would give MS three things:

  1. unified UI across mobile and dekstops
  2. the ability to make people demand metro on mobile devices, using the MS-desktop monopoly to take over a brobdingnagian chunk of the mobile market.
  3. a lock-in mechanism to force people to use its "App Store".

It turns out that this strategy has backfired badly. No one is buying Metro on phones, tablets, Surfaces, or, indeed, on Desktops, despite that people have no alternatives at retail, e.g. PC world etc.”
see Microsoft: All RIGHT, you can have your Start button back

So, the trolls who come here and tell us that so many millions of licences of “8” sold mean M$’s OS is beloved are simply wrong. Even M$ says that publicly. Why don’t the trolls get that? If all you find on retail shelves is “8” consumers may easily be forced to buy “8”. OEMs may have been forced to ship 100 million PCs with a hated GUI but a lot of consumers refused to buy that stock from retailers. The result has been a huge downturn in sales in the real world to real people and the virtual people at M$ are changing things once again to give people more of what they want.

Too little, too late. The world has moved on to the point that with Vista and “8”, M$ has introduced more people to GNU/Linux and Android/Linux than all the FLOSSies, GNU/Linux geeks, rogue computer teachers and huge rollouts in government and business have accomplished over a decade. Thanks, M$.

Don’t like some of the new GUIs in GNU/Linux? No problem. Install this, remove that and voila!, you can have what you want with GNU/Linux. No need to wait for some huge remote corporation to survey the world to help them decide what you want…

Are you an OEM with paper-thin margins seeing unit shipments down ~15%? No need to wait for M$ to get its act together, just ship GNU/Linux.

Are you a retailer with stagnant retail shelves? Order GNU/Linux from your suppliers and watch SKUs fly off the shelves.

Are you a consumer tired of being lead around by the nose by M$? Be FREE! Demand GNU/Linux. It comes with a licence that permits you to use the hardware you buy the way you want.

Use GNU/Linux and FLOSS. It’s the right way to do IT.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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32 Responses to M$ Flailing, Not Sailing

  1. oiaohm says:

    George Wilson
    –I think I stated it clearly enough: the WD TV Live did what I needed. Specifically: Netflix. Case closed. Hasn’t got to do anything with Linux. But if it brings peace to your mind: I also own an Apple TV. And a Xbox 360. And a PS3. All these don’t run on Linux, I believe. And I didn’t buy any of these devices for the sake of their operating systems.–

    You did not answer why you did not buy just another Apple TV box. Apple TV box displays Netflix as well. You specifically is not just serviced by a WD TV Live item. There are a few freebsd based items out there as well that could also serve up Netflix content.

    This is the problem you Specifically is not served by the Linux box alone. About time you answer the true reason you choose it.

    If you say price bad news the low cost state would not be possible without Linux Unified Kernel development.

    Normally once you do answer the true reason that reason is normally partly traced to the device being Linux based.

    George Wilson yes your answer is not logical.

  2. George Wilson says:

    @matchbox:

    Nothing of substance, as always.

    @dougman:

    Huh? Let me see, I owned a C64, I owned an Atari, I owned an Amiga, I owned an Apple, I even owned something from SGI at one point. No choice? Who are you kidding? There was choice aplenty. It’s just that the PC running Microsoft software came out on top because it happened to be the right thing at the right time.

    As for the usual crowing about Android — there’s no choice there either! The operating system is tied to the hardware by all means and purposes. You want Android? You buy these phones and tablets. You want Tizen? You buy these. You want Ubuntu Phone? You buy these. Phones and tablets as general purpose devices on which you install the operating system of your choice aren’t happening.

    As for PCs: you have choice. Linux came out when? Right, over 20 years ago.

    @oiaohm:

    I think I stated it clearly enough: the WD TV Live did what I needed. Specifically: Netflix. Case closed. Hasn’t got to do anything with Linux. But if it brings peace to your mind: I also own an Apple TV. And a Xbox 360. And a PS3. All these don’t run on Linux, I believe. And I didn’t buy any of these devices for the sake of their operating systems.

    What now?

  3. oiaohm says:

    George Wilson comes done to define of choosing.

    Linux people don’t care if end users know its Linux. All we care is they choose to use the device with Linux on it that in turn funds Linux Developers.

    So they are choosing Linux even if they don’t know its Linux or not. So exactly why are not Windows Embedded items not flying off the shelf George Wilson.

    Items like WD TV Live don’t have to be built based on Linux. The ones based on Linux sell.

    So users are choosing between Linux and non Linux devices. Remember you could have chosen an apple tv box and other non Linux boxes. George Wilson so why did not you.

    Just because you choose without knowing does not mean you are not choosing George Wilson.

  4. dougman says:

    Re: If you believe people “choose” Linux, then believe it. I will not stop you. It just seems a very, very misguided thought.

    On the obverse of your misguided statement, people were not given a choice when it came to operating systems, as M$ had the market tied up at the turn of the century. Now people have a choice, they may not ask for Linux by name, but they sure aren’t buying M$ Windows either.

    Just admit it, Windows is a dying breed, soon to the go the way of Blackberry, unless significant change is made.

    After a storm of criticism from frustrated long-time Windows users, Microsoft announced that it would be making significant changes to its Windows 8 operating system. The details have not been released yet, but it’s assumed that they will include bringing back the “Start” button that has been a fixture in the lower-left corner since 1995 and giving desktop users the ability to bypass the tiled start screen on system startup.

    Is this a failure for Microsoft? In some critical ways, yes. In a classic case of arrogance, Microsoft assumed that, after some initial grumbling, consumers would embrace the Windows 8 style because, frankly, they weren’t given a choice.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/moneybuilder/2013/05/09/the-windows-8-flop-what-does-it-mean-for-microsoft/

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/connieguglielmo/2013/04/10/microsofts-windows-8-fails-to-spur-pc-sales-as-buyers-opt-for-more-smartphones-tablets/

    Investors are beginning to ask whether the exuberant Mr Ballmer, 57, who took over as CEO from Bill Gates in 2000, is still the man to take Microsoft forward after allowing rivals to revolutionise the market with touch-based mobile computing devices. Global PC sales slumped by 14 per cent in the first quarter of 2013.

    Mr Ballmer should quit now, said Joachim Kempin, a former Microsoft executive who helped to build the Windows business. “Microsoft is going into surface tablets. These tablets are OK products, but nothing really distinguishes them either,” he told the BBC.

    Microsoft has alienated its manufacturing partners, Mr Kempin said, noting how Hewlett-Packard and Samsung are now producing tablets for Android, not Windows.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/gadgets-and-tech/news/steve-ballmer-the-boss-who-bet-his-company-on-windows-8–and-lost-as-computer-giant-announces-biggest-product-uturn-since-new-coke-8605776.html

    The principal challenge for experienced users of Windows is the total absence of a Start button, familiar since 1995 as the place with all their programs and shortcuts stored in a huge list. Windows 8 instead introduces a layer of giant “tiles” over the traditional desktop.

    But users find that perplexing – so much so that one of the bestselling apps on Windows 8 has been Stardock, which lets the user add the start button back in, and ModernMix, which lets tile apps run on the old desktop.

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2013/may/07/microsoft-redesign-windows-8

    http://www.nbcnews.com/technology/microsoft-retools-windows-8-address-gripes-6C9813861

    Microsoft Prepares U-Turn on Windows 8

    http://www.cnbc.com/id/100713593

  5. matchrocket says:

    Quoting George Wilson: “I could claim that you support murder sprees because you’re a supporter of guns.”

    BZZZZZT! Logic fail. You’re coming apart at the seams Mr. Wilson. I suggest you retire from trolling for Microsoft. Start a garden if you don’t already have one. You’ll find it much more rewarding rather than the constant failure you experience here.

  6. George Wilson says:

    If you believe people “choose” Linux, then believe it. I will not stop you. It just seems a very, very misguided thought.

    You’re saying that, for example, I “chose” Linux because I bought a WD TV Live. But I can’t remember “choosing” Linux. I was shopping for a product, I tried it out in a store, it worked to my satisfaction, I bought it. Never once was this a decision pro-Linux. Because I could care less what this device runs with as long as it works.

    So all this “people buy devices with Linux, ergo they ‘choose’ Linux” is just semantic bullshit of the worst kind. People unconsciously using Linux does not equal people supporting Linux. That’s what it’s all about.

    Otherwise, if you insist on this line of reasoning, I could claim that you support murder sprees because you’re a supporter of guns.

  7. George Wilson, becoming increasingly bitter and despairing wrote, “You seem to think that all your useless tales about Linux and supercomputers and the likes will impress someone. They don’t. That you constantly try to suggest that people should choose Linux for their personal computing because big companies use it shows that you have not a goddamn clue about the consumer market.”

    The fact is all kinds of people are choosing */Linux for all kinds of computing. That’s not laid out to impress people. That’s just reporting the facts.

    Consumers want the same things that businesses do: PCs that work reliably, no malware, low cost etc. GNU/Linux, Android/Linux and FLOSS give them that especially on ARM.

  8. George Wilson wrote, “why doesn’t Amazon sell more Linux computers if they’re so happy with Linux on their servers? Perhaps because they know it doesn’t sell?”

    Desktop Linux PCs: 133 hits

    Chromeos Notebooks: 2 hits

    Seems silly to me that they don’t sell more notebooks. Ask them why. The desktop machines seem to sell well.

  9. dougman says:

    Why is George Wilson STILL here? Seems someone is butt-hurt over the fact that M$ is in serious decline. Perhaps you should start working with Linux, instead of arguing against it. Do recall, the more you fight against something, the more you attract it to you.

    http://news.dice.com/2013/02/28/demand-for-linux-talent/

    Pogson, describes the decline of Windows hegemony perfectly well, couldn’t have stated better then myself.

    Mr. George, see Mr. Bezos does sell Linux. Kindle being one slick device, along with all the OEM Android phones, are you blind??

    Amazon’s top selling laptop doesn’t run Windows or Mac OS, it runs Linux

    http://www.zdnet.com/amazons-top-selling-laptop-doesnt-run-windows-or-mac-os-it-runs-linux-7000009433/

  10. George Wilson says:

    Linus, could have held onto Linux, but he choose not to. He saw the beauty in releasing it into the wild, to mature and grow.

    And that has absolutely nothing to do with the point I made. On the other hand it’s telling that nothing else than the Linux kernel — the one FLOSS project that stands out — comes to your mind as a rebute.

    You reach a point in your life, where you don’t work for money, but do what it is that makes you happy.

    Bullshit. First, most people have to work all their life for money, in a job that doesn’t necessarily make them happy. It’s not that they can easily choose. Second, you’re always working for something. If it’s not money then it’s something else. And this something else becomes a means to an end itself. It’s not really about Linux for you. It’s about evangelizing for you.

    You’re happy? Fine. But don’t act like you’re Mother Teresa. Because your acts are not selfless.

  11. George Wilson says:

    The Linux kernel is what everything else runs on top of, so it’s the key to everything that a Linux device can do. It’s in your Android phone. It’s in the computers that run the servers at Google, Amazon and all the other web services that we take for granted.

    What is your goddamn point? I don’t see one.

    A service or a device doesn’t magically become good because it’s built on top of the Linux kernel.

    Do I give a crap if Amazon’s servers run on Linux or on petrol fumes? Hell, no, I don’t. Perhaps Amazon does. But that’s besides the point!

    Tell me, why doesn’t Amazon sell more Linux computers if they’re so happy with Linux on their servers? Perhaps because they know it doesn’t sell?

    You really need to get hit over the head with a sledgehammer to get it:

    I don’t care if the Vatican is running on Linux.
    I don’t care if God himself is running on Linux.

    If I buy a product with the Linux kernel in it, then I buy it because it’s to me a compelling product. Not because of the Linux kernel.

    You seem to think that all your useless tales about Linux and supercomputers and the likes will impress someone. They don’t. That you constantly try to suggest that people should choose Linux for their personal computing because big companies use it shows that you have not a goddamn clue about the consumer market.

  12. George Wilson wrote, “Remember how you said that Microsoft would soon collapse?”

    Remember the good old days when no one got fired for buying M$? and every OS they cranked out was a hit on retail shelves? and consumers had no choice of OS on retail shelves? Those days are gone. M$ created a monopoly with help from “ISV”s, IBM, OEMs and retailers colluding. That’s fallen apart. All those collaborators have gone their separate ways. M$ is all alone now and cannot stand on the crap it ships. M$ was a leader by default. Now it’s a follower. The cashflow has shifted from consumers to business and business is shifting from local applications to web applications, thin clients and chromebooks and GNU/Linux clients and servers. M$ is living off the installed base rather than the shipments. The installed base is temporarily a source of cash. With declining shipments that will decline too.

    Ever seen a large structure collapse? If you just nibble at one place the collapse will be slow but if the nibbling is happening everywhere, or the structure becomes undermined, the structure collapses suddenly under its own weight. That’s the picture I have of M$, like a tree with a big notch cut out. It can last for years but its days are numbered and the end is swift. You wouldn’t build a treehouse in such a tree. You get out of the way of it.

  13. dougman says:

    But one pays commercial software vendors to get refined software products.

    Lol, says you. Granted, 75% of Linux code is written by paid developers, namely, RedHat, Google, Amazon, etc for their own use, and they freely give back to the mindshare. Linux can be utilized by anyone, for anything. Example being, Android and Chromebooks are current creations, actively being sold, outpacing anything that M$ can conjour up.

    The Linux kernel is what everything else runs on top of, so it’s the key to everything that a Linux device can do. It’s in your Android phone. It’s in the computers that run the servers at Google, Amazon and all the other web services that we take for granted.

    It powers the database that US immigration uses to decide if you are who you say you are, it’s deep under the Alps searching for new particles at CERN, and it’s even on unmanned drones searching for drugs traffickers in the Caribbean. Linux is everywhere.

    FLOSS produces things that are good enough, but not great enough to warrant being sold for a price.

    Linus, could have held onto Linux, but he choose not to. He saw the beauty in releasing it into the wild, to mature and grow.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s7dTjpvakmA

    You reach a point in your life, where you don’t work for money, but do what it is that makes you happy. I am sorry to see Mr. WIlson upset over that fact the Linux is becoming ubiquitous, maybe he should find a hobby business that makes him more joyful.

    For me, fixing computers, converting M$ users and deploying Linux makes me happy. 🙂

  14. George Wilson says:

    Pogson going rah-rah-rah again. The only waves I can hear are the ones breaking above your head. Remember how you said that Microsoft would soon collapse? You revised this bullshit story to Microsoft losing lots of market share once you had seen that the Linux Desktop was not happening. Then you jumped on the Android train which, luckily for you, was departing.

    If Linux is this big juggernaut, if FLOSS is this big juggernaut, then why is Microsoft still standing? And why are they making profit? And why are they making record revenue? Any explanation for that, oh great sage? Every commercial software company would have to be keel-up in the water by now if your prophecies contained only a tiny bit of truth.

    Linux in all its forms is a LEGO kit. It’s free and it’s good enough if you yourself want to invest the time to do whatever it is you want to.

    But one pays commercial software vendors to get refined software products. Something the world of FLOSS mostly knows nothing about. It produces things that are good enough, but not great enough to warrant being sold for a price.

  15. bw wrote, “the business aspects are a lot clearer and not very favorable for Linux or Android.”

    I think it’s time for breakfast. I almost fainted parsing that one… */Linux has never been in a better position to grow and provide profits for all kinds of businesses: component makers, OEMs, software developers, retailers and users. */Linux is good business for everyone except people selling licences for operating systems. That’s just the wrong way to do IT, getting over-priced permission to use one’s hardware.

    bw, have you noticed anyone lately getting out of the */Linux business? No? It’s not 2007 when OEMs were dipping their toes cautiously in the pool and running away. They are doing “cannon balls” now. The waves are washing over M$’s barriers to entry.

  16. bw made me laugh with, “You dopes were saying the same thing 90 days ago about Q3 as I recall. It’s always something extraordinary, isn’t it? Meanwhile, there are no more Linux PCs on the shelves than there were 20 years ago.”

    That’s so funny. Did you actually read M$’s report? Without deferred revenue it would have been a very poor quarter. From where is this quarter’s deferred revenue coming? In fact, it won’t be from consumer PCs shipped by OEMs… The deferred revenue pile is dwindling. Eventually the chickens come home to roost. Meanwhile, few if any OEMs were shipping GNU/Linux 20 years ago. Now they all do and on many more form-factors.

    Even Raspberry Pi which is junky low-end stuff shipped 1.2 million units last year. That’s the tip of a huge iceberg the big ship Wintel is hitting this year. Ubuntu GNU/Linux alone is not far behind Apple’s MacOS and they are growing rapidly with Dell in Asia. Where is the upside for Wintel? Wintel is happy simply to survive, not thrive.

  17. dougman made a good find.

    • Between October and November 2012, Microsoft sold 37.5 million copies of Windows 8. (I’ve adjusted for a 30-day month.)
    • Between November 2012 and January 2013, Microsoft sold 14.3 million copies per month.
    • Between January and May, Microsoft sold 10.1 million copies per month.

    Windows 7, by contrast, sold suspiciously close to 20 million copies per month every month for its entire lifetime.”

    That’s pretty conclusive. “8” shipments are not growing. They’re slowing. Meanwhile */Linux has growth rates hurting suppliers’ ability to deliver…

  18. oiaohm says:

    bw before 3Q if you go back I was mentioning it was possible not going to show the truth due to differed income. 4Q MS has mostly run out of that.

    –Meanwhile, there are no more Linux PCs on the shelves than there were 20 years ago.–

    Really there are more on shelf than 20 years ago. 20 years ago there was completely zero. bw there are the Linux tokens.

    You should have said 10 years ago.

  19. George Wilson says:

    LOL, typical M$ response. It must be the USERS fault and NEVER, EVER the OS.

    Quick question: have you ever visited a Linux forum? Blaming the user is a standard modus operandi there.

    Any more lies you want to tell us, dougman?

  20. dougman says:

    Re: Have you asked the Best Buy clowns what they did to it? Or are you yourself the culprit?

    LOL, typical M$ response. It must be the USERS fault and NEVER, EVER the OS.

    On the subject of M$ Windows, ‘not so great’ 8.

    Microsoft’s own numbers show Windows 8 sales falling rapidly
    Microsoft says it’s sold more than 100 million Windows 8 licenses, but official monthly report shows precipitous decline in sales.

    https://www.infoworld.com/t/microsoft-windows/microsofts-own-numbers-show-windows-8-sales-falling-rapidly-218050

    If you’re skeptical about Microsoft’s numbers, you might want to contemplate how bad the Windows 8 activation rate really is.

    OUCH, here is another scathing report. Windows 8 marketing fiasco deemed even worse than ‘New Coke’

    http://bgr.com/2013/05/07/microsoft-windows-8-criticism-new-coke/

  21. bw says:

    “wait for 4Q”

    You dopes were saying the same thing 90 days ago about Q3 as I recall. It’s always something extraordinary, isn’t it? Meanwhile, there are no more Linux PCs on the shelves than there were 20 years ago.

    “Go to China”, you say. “Go to Brazil”, you say. But even those places show Linux use below 1%. “Well, see what Steam has to say”, you then say. Isn’t it ever going to dawn on you that this Linux thing isn’t working out?

    If Microsoft profits dip a little, and they have not, that is not going to cause them to go out of business. The Windows ecosystem is the most profitable thing that has ever existed in business and remains so decades after its start up. If you wait long enough, it is bound to die out, everything does, but you have to ask yourself if you have enough years remaining to ever see that day.

  22. oiaohm says:

    bw wait for 4Q and we will start to see the books from Windows 8. By MS reactions of Windows Blue you can fairly much say Windows 8 does not look good when they are not moving revenue around.

  23. bw says:

    Hmmm…

    Depends on your point of view, I guess. From XP to Win8 Microsoft has more than doubled their annual revenues and more than tripled their operating income. Call that a decline, but you are plainly stretching.

    Usage statistics are questionable, too, but regardless of whether what you claim is factual, the business aspects are a lot clearer and not very favorable for Linux or Android.

  24. bw wrote of Vista v GNU/Linux, “Linux didn’t get anything out of the experience other than having something to giggle about for the Linux fans.”

    Hmmm…

    Heyday of XP: ~95% share for that other OS

    March 2013: 55.73% share for that other OS

    Meanwhile usage of GNU/Linux on desktops/notebooks has risen from ~3% to ~10% and Android/Linux has gone from nothing to 7% and could easily reach 50% at this pace.

  25. bw says:

    “Too little, too late. The world has moved on to the point that with Vista and “8″, M$ has introduced more people to GNU/Linux and Android/Linux than all the FLOSSies, GNU/Linux geeks, rogue computer teachers and huge rollouts in government and business have accomplished over a decade. Thanks, M$”

    I think you are too quick to claim a victory here. Vista was not so popular and everyone cheered when Win7 was released to correct the mistakes. Linux didn’t get anything out of the experience other than having something to giggle about for the Linux fans.

    Windows 8 is going to be the same sort of thing, I would wager. I have been using it for months now and I don’t really see any downside that would even remotely put it into the Vista category for user shock value. I did pay $3 to get a multi-unit license for StartIsBack which the desktop sorely needed to give aid and comfort to us Win7 users. Now Blue is apparently going to throw that in, so there is nothing but cheering left to do.

    The essence of the situation is that people pine for a better and better Windows and respond favorably and enthusiastically when it is offered. Win95, Win98, Win2K, WinXP, and Win7 all fit that mold and were big winners on the desktop. Blue will be the same.

    Looking for a better Windows over time does not translate into using Linux in the PC world.

  26. George Wilson wrote, “Have you asked the Best Buy clowns what they did to it? Or are you yourself the culprit?”

    No user should be able to bork a running operating system. That’s one of the goals of an OS. Otherwise we could all just run standalone applications.

  27. George Wilson says:

    Was in Bestbuy the other day, lo’ and behold what do I find.

    Yes, what did you find? A tablet where Windows 8 has crashed. Have you asked the Best Buy clowns what they did to it? Or are you yourself the culprit?

  28. dougman says:

    Regarding M$ and Linux, it would not be hard for them to take a distro and just basically do what Google did with their Chromebooks.

    Imagine, M$ Office being licensed for Linux as a .deb file?

    Who would have thought that Steam would have been available five or six years ago. Once Ballmer is ousted, and new blood is brought in, then things will begin to change.

  29. Beautiful, dougman.

  30. dougman says:

    Regarding M$ and licenses sold, this post explains it perfectly:

    “Microsoft’s ‘licences sold’ numbers include copies of Windows sold to PC makers, so they tell us what the channel has been willing to buy or what volume customers have swallowed rather than what’s actually being deployed on new machines.”

    I’d argue 90%+ of ‘licenses sold’ are sales from MSFT to PC makers with 10% accounting for direct sales to consumers.

    The 90%+ doesn’t give any indication as to:

    (a) how many of those PCs are actually sold to an end user,

    (b) how many that are ‘sold’ to an end user are returned,

    (c) how MSFT prices its Win7 licenses to PC makers vs. Win8 licenses.

    I’d expect:

    (a) not many – given the slowdown in PC growth and the poor profit results of the big PC makers,

    (b) a lot of Win8 machines being returned,

    (c) Win7 license cost >>>>> Win 8 license cost so that PC makers are compelled to buy Win8 or face no profit margin on a Win7 machine.

    It’s all academic, really, because this whole Win8 episode has been a failure for MSFT of epic proportions. All that shareholders’ money wasted on software (ie. Metro) that no-one really wants.

    Win8 = EPIC FAIL.

  31. Mats Hagglund says:

    I just wonder could Microsoft some day publish a shocking news: moving to Linux and creating Linux-kernel based operation system (Winlux) giving free version for people (Home) and commercial version for enterprise and professional consumers. If Novel and Red Hat can make it why not Microsoft. They still have lots of paying consumers want to buy MS Office and other MS software. Is operation system called Windows really so important to Redmond? Or is operation system becoming smaller player compared to apps?

  32. dougman says:

    Was in Bestbuy the other day, lo’ and behold what do I find.

    https://www.dropbox.com/s/r7p8o5xuogjds9c/2013-04-27%2018.38.07.jpg

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