Thanks, Microsoft! (really!)

So today I looked at some new laptops.  For various reasons I won’t go into, I really need to set up a new (well, another) Windows machine.  Wine (the Linux program that lets you run Windows software) has made a lot of headway over the past few years, but some apps that I depend on just don’t act right.  So, we stopped in at Best Buy to see what was up.

What’s up is Windows 8.  For some reason, the stupidity in Redmond has reached a level where they can no longer distinguish the difference between a cell phone and a laptop or desktop computer.  Hint, guys — what works great on Droid phone doesn’t make sense on a laptop.  It’s cute, and I’m sure they’re selling a shitload of new laptops with Windows 8, but I’m baffled at how anyone could actually use one for anything productive.

So, really, guys — thanks.  You saved me from wasting $750 or so on a new machine.  Instead I’ll re-purpose a desktop I have here and load it with Win7, for which I think I may still have a spare OEM license.  Or something.  All I know is, Apple should be sending you guys flowers and candy.  Windows 8 is enough to make even OSX look good.


5 Replies to “Thanks, Microsoft! (really!)”

  1. Dell Business Outlet for refurb business-class laptops wih 3 years of Next Business Day onsite service included, with Win 7 Pro installed for less than comparable consumer crap that Best Buy sells. They send me 30% off coupons all the time.

    I’ve bought a laptop (Latitude E6510, love it) and two minitowers from them over the past year, they rock.

  2. I may give that a look. I have a desktop in my office currently running Ubuntu (it’s run Mint, Fedora and Ubuntu at various times). I’d hate to not have a Linux machine handy, but I really need Windows here — some of my stuff just flat can’t be persuaded to run right under Wine. I may set it up to dual boot. I’d use a Xen VM, but never have been able to make that work when the VM has to talk to USB devices.

    What sucks is… I just got a new corporate laptop as part of the Win7 “upgrade” project. The old one (all of two years old) is still perfectly serviceable, and I’d gladly pay them a fair price for it. Naturally, that’s impossible. It will go to some “asset recovery” place, and eventually probably get sold off for less than I’d pay for it. Gotta love big companies.

  3. My place does that too, annoys the hell out of me!

    I finally gave up and set up the second desktop (Optiplex 7010, very nice) to dual boot with Windows 7 because the stupid schools love to he’ll MS out by using Office instead of Openoffice and Windows Movie Maker, the bastards. Still, runs Ubuntu and the kids are under strict orders – no general surfing on Windows!

  4. Well, hell.

    I had a bunch of development tools running on an XP machine. When that machine went away, I took the opportunity to try to migrate everything to Linux. In a nutshell… no dice. The Linux version of one of the two tools I absolutely depend on seems to be only marginally supported, and is lagging the Windows IDE version. The Windows version doesn’t play well under Wine (oddball display issues). The CNC CAD program runs under Wine, but is unusable due to display issues. And Libre Office is really not useful for the documentation I need to produce… what takes ten seconds in Word is virtually impossible in LO, and the resulting PDF is garbage. (Example: Try pasting a large PNG into a table cell, then crop and scale it to fit. Now make a PDF – or even try to just close and re-open the file. It’s pretty ugly.)

    I finally, reluctantly, installed Win7 on the machine. I just can’t spend the time fighting and hoping I can get the stuff I need kludged together enough to get by. As a bonus, though, I found out that I hadn’t used the W7 I had sitting here. I got it dirt cheap from the Microsoft employee store when we did some training at one of their facilities. I installed it on a spare 500GB drive I had sitting here, so my Linux drive is still intact. When I put the machine back together I’ll set it up to boot from either of them.

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