Russian Government guns for Microsoft over Windows XP


Isn't it amazing just how attached so many people are to Windows XP given that it is relatively old and relatively insecure? I will even admit to having a netbook which runs very nicely on XP thank you very much, and have no plans to 'upgrade' this to Vista or Windows 7. The Russian government, in the shape of the Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS), does not seem to keen on Vista either. Actually, let me rephrase that, it does not seem too keen on Microsoft forcing people into buying Vista by retiring Windows XP. Somewhat incredulously, it is investigating Microsoft with a view to filing formal charges revolving around an abuse of a dominant market position.

The argument seems to be that there was still considerable user demand for XP back in June 2008 when it was dropped from retail sale by Microsoft, thus creating a demand for Vista which did not exist at the time. There is also anger over computer vendors being allowed to downgrade from Vista to XP which apparently violates Russian antitrust laws in some way, possibly the charging of different prices for a product.

Is it just me, or does this seem to be taking Microsoft-bashing to a whole new low? Is it really that unreasonable for a company to withdraw an older product once a newer one has been on the market for a while? Is it really unreasonable for a company to allow vendors to provide that older product to customers who express a preference for it, and charge an appropriate price for it? For once, I find myself siding with Microsoft here.

The FAS issued a statement confirming that the case against Microsoft will be considered before the end of July.

About the Author

A freelance technology journalist for 30 years, I have been a Contributing Editor at PC Pro (one of the best selling computer magazines in the UK) for most of them. As well as currently contributing to, The Times and Sunday Times via Raconteur Special Reports, SC Magazine UK, Digital Health, IT Pro and Infosecurity Magazine, I am also something of a prolific author. My last book, Being Virtual: Who You Really are Online, which was published in 2008 as part of the Science Museum TechKnow Series by John Wiley & Sons. I am also the only three times winner (2006, 2008, 2010) of the BT Information Security Journalist of the Year title, and was humbled to be presented with the ‘Enigma Award’ for a ‘lifetime contribution to information security journalism’ in 2011 despite my life being far from over...

lproven 0 Newbie Poster

> Is it just me, or does this seem to be taking
> Microsoft-bashing to a whole new low?

Actually, yes, I think it is, I'm afraid. It seems like quite a legitimate move to me.

> Is it
> really that unreasonable for a company to
> withdraw an older product once a newer one
> has been on the market for a while?

Actually, yes, it arguably /is/ unreasonable when a billion-odd people depend on that product for their livelihoods and the company has for a long time used illegal measures to ensure that it has a monopoly and there are no competitors to go to instead.

happygeek 2,411 Most Valuable Poster Team Colleague Featured Poster

Liam, on the second point: why is it unreasonable to withdraw the product (no matter how many users there are) after a period of time? I'd agree if the Russians were talking about withdrawal of support for XP, but they aren't they are complaining about the product itself coming off the retail shelves.

mrGee 0 Newbie Poster

i think one of the primary objectives of a company is to stisfy their customers, so if the customers still preffer the older product let them get it
"The customer is always right"

yturieow 0 Newbie Poster

There are two simple reasons people want to stay with XP.
1. It's the first stable version of Windows ever.
2. People with older machines don't have a large enough hard disk to accomodate the bloated Vista code. Memory: same problem

In contrast, MS wants to push Vista to obviously make more money, and computer makers want to push it, so they can sell more computers, bigger hard drives, and more memory.

I have to agree with MrGee here; The customer is always right.

dannyblaze 0 Newbie Poster

I would have to agree with the posters here that agree with the Russian Government on this matter.

I use XP on my notebook and my netbook. I will not upgrade because XP works, is secure and isn't broken. Vista is insecure, broken from the beginning and is ridiculously over priced. Microsoft is not about you and I but about the bottom line. I like profit too but not at the expense of quality, service and of course customer satisfaction.

Be a part of the DaniWeb community

We're a friendly, industry-focused community of 1.20 million developers, IT pros, digital marketers, and technology enthusiasts learning and sharing knowledge.