Australian Lefty on Politics, Governance, Science and Info Management

6.0 + 0.1 = 7 according to Microsoft

Posted by Dave Bath on 2009-10-29

Microsoft doesn’t add up… 6.0 + 0.1 = 7.

It’s not surprising that as a self-proclaimed unix bigot, I won’t be rushing to install Windows 7.

That’s because I think Vista isn’t that bad, and the greater convenience touted on security matters ("fewer annoying popups") in "Seven" is oxymoronic.  My Microsoft partition will stay Vista.

Vista (Windows 6.0 if you open a cmd window and type ver) was the first Microsoft OS in over two decades that I didn’t immediately remove from new PC I purchased.  (Yes, I dual boot into SuSE, and run VirtualBox images of other operating systems).  That’s because it is the first Microsoft OS with half-way decent security (providing you avoid InternetExplorer, Outlook, Microsoft Office, etc, and use a good set of privacy and security add-ons for Firefox).

Windows 7 – well the hype of the OS is about as accurate as the number.  Open up a cmd window and type ver and you get the REAL version number: 6.1.

Now, if it had really been a major release, ver wouldn’t give merely a dot point difference between Vista and Windows so-called 7.  Microsoft control both the version and the brand… so why are they different?

Consider the difference between Microsoft and Apple.  OSX 10.2 is…. well…. 10.2.  No misdirection there!  But then, Apple is a real OS… it’s a unix, albeit a Berzerkely one.

Vista/6.0, patched up, is pretty much the same as Windows 7/6.1 – the only real difference (apart from an optional UTC-timestamped filesystem – something we’ve had in the unix world since the dawn of time) is cosmetic, and I turn off the RAM/CPU-hogging useless eye candy anyway.

So… think about it: Microsoft internals show "Seven" is only a minor release different from Vista.  And can you imagine the nightmare for those needing tech support in a couple of years when trying to figure out what version of Microsoft a person is running?  Windows "10" will probably officially be version 7.2.

Anybody who says Vista BAD, "Seven" GOOD is the sort of person who’d think capabilities change when a person changes from shorts to jeans.


5 Responses to “6.0 + 0.1 = 7 according to Microsoft”

  1. RJain said

    OSX 10.2 is…. well…. 10.2. Not really! It is OSX 10, Service Pack 2.

  2. Dave said

    The explanation i heard from microsoft on the 6.1 instead of 7 was they had to do it for compatibility.
    They said that moving it to major to 7 caused alot of 3rd party software not to run, because the software was checking for major version equal to 6 to make sure it was running on vista. If the OS returned major 7, the software break and would have required 3rd parties to provide patches to get it working for windows 7.

  3. […] 6.0 + 0.1 = 7 according to Microsoft « Balneus […]

  4. Dave Bath said

    Dave@2 talks of software vendors having problems with something that should be “if(v<6) {something} else {whatever}".

    Those software vendors should be told to get out of the game and Microsoft shouldn't have anything to do with anybody having such shonky code, let alone pander to them… oh, wait… shonky code or poor design… Microsoft… (look here at nestlevel and floating point dain-bramage)… or perhaps Microsoft should put in a nice friendly “/proc” pseudo-filesystem that lets you query particular facilities, and whether those facilities have been loaded into the running kernel.

    But again… if you must have a Microsoft OS (actually, Microsoft /did/ have a good one in the 80s, called Xenix… smirk… and guess what Billy Boy had on his desk!), then Vista is a reasonable choice – as “Seven” may be if you are running something stupid like XP.

    The really sad thing is the basis of the original “NT” was great – under the hood it was VMS (derrrrr, maybe Dave Cutler being prevented from writing a new version of VMS inside DEC had something to do with it). So, despite all the VMS$MADNESS when looking through the guts (I’m surprised it didn’t come with DCL and SYS$INPUT, SYS$OUTPUT, but would have loved to have the lexicals), which would have kept us unix bigots moderately satisfied, Microsoft took a perfectly good kernel and sabotaged it by putting stuff in there that should never be in a kernel (like GUI calls).

    (Feeling a big nostalgic for TOPS and toggling up PDPs now)

    The thing that I liked about Vista was what annoyed everybody else… the nagging and asking for confirmation when something privileged was required. Made me feel safe. Less nagging (as promised with “Seven”) makes me a bit nervous.

  5. Jacques Chester said

    Those software vendors should be told to get out of the game and Microsoft shouldn’t have anything to do with anybody having such shonky code, let alone pander to them…

    The golden handcuffs have served Microsoft very well so far.

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