The Register has yet another fine article on M$’s jerking businesses around just for permission to use the hardware they own. The article is OK:
“One of the biggest complaints from customers regarding Microsoft was the complexity of licensing, with some joking that a degree in the discipline is needed to get close to making sense of it.” but you really must read the comments by those anguished customers. Here are some examples:
- One Anonymous Coward wrote, “And this is the key issue, price. Having persuaded the management where I work 2 1/2 years ago to go onto an OVS I am now having to explain to them that actually it is now about 25% more expensive! What extra 25% value are we getting?”
- Destroy All Monsters wrote, [SARCASM ALERT] “It is absolutely justifiable to make customers pay for the faster CPUs they enjoy, because, after all, these other companies’ (i.e. Intel’s) work is not being Microsoft-taxed by default! The customer paid for hardware out of his own pocket! Without giving Microsoft a cut!! This is irresponsible, akin to refusing to pay VAT or income tax, which goes to the support of widows, children and roads. What is the world coming to when QUALITY work by Redmond is no longer appreciated and people start to dispute adequate remuneration! Microsoft could decide to just withhold its products, leaving you die slowly in the basement with an unsupported NT kernel and a festering IIS, so be grateful!” and
- another Anonymous Coward wrote, “Perhaps you’re referring to the features that simply make their own products merely usable? Or the ones that constantly raise the CPU and RAM requirements just to boot to the desktop? Or the ones that change 20-year old user interface conventions in an attempt to have a leg on the mobile/touch/tablet market? Or the ones that provide backwards compatibility at a huge cost in security? Or the ones that force users to endure non standard compliant products for the sake of “embrace, extend extinguish”? Or the ones that restrict what you can and what you can’t do with your software such as, god forbids, install it on another machine? Or the ones that restrict what you can do with your computer, such as changing its motherboard?”
The tide is working against M$ as it raises revenue not by selling performance/price but by hiding its price in bundling with hardware or complexity one way or another to fool the customer. Eventually customers catch on and there will be a backlash. I’ve seen that backlash grow from tiny shifts a decade ago to explosive rearrangements of the IT landscape. The train wreck has started and it can’t be stopped. I just hope only the guilty suffer in the result.