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Supporting XP

Week of September 1, 2002
- Or supporting sheer blind ignorance and idiocy...

More and more Radsoft's support desk are receiving mysterious reports from customers who out of nowhere run into trouble with Windows XP - amazing to say the least, and for several obvious reasons.

Radsoft naturally refuse to compensate for or take responsibility for consumer ignorance, and for over a year now Radsoft and other acknowledged IT authorities the world over have protested and warned against Windows XP, citing not only its evil product activation scheme, but also the gratuitous fashion in which Microsoft in stealth download undisclosed patches to customer computers.

By innocently not removing microsoft.com from the list of trusted domains in Internet Explorer, a Windows XP user unleashes floodgates of destruction and jumps headlong into Pandora's Box. Search engines are already propped to the bursting point with reports of botched Microsoft updates to Windows XP which were downloaded to computers world-wide with complete ignorance on the part of users.

No corporation can claim to support an operating system when the vendor of that operating system have made it clear, both in their words and through their actions, that the operating system is going to be continually changing, and with no forewarning, and in ways the vendor will often refuse to disclose.

Corporations may claim support for operating systems which are static, i.e. when both corporation and customer are in agreement as to what a particular version of an operating system represents; but this concept has gone full out the window with Microsoft's latest monster. Microsoft deliberately change XP all the time, do not even notify users of the changes, and do not even disclose what has been changed. Any independent software vendor claiming support for XP under these circumstances is guilty of both hypocrisy and an unethical marketing policy.

Radsoft software runs better than Microsoft software - of that there can be no doubt, the world very much in consensus there - whereas Microsoft are notorious for poorly written code and for untrustworthy computing, and whereas Windows XP has already caused several scandals on a scale far greater than ever before, with both overt and covert patches ruining computers and forcing users to reinstall earlier versions of the operating system.

Radsoft's Extreme Power Tools have been run and tested extensively on Windows XP by several respected e-zines, and with highly successful results. One e-zine posted such a laudatory review that Radsoft were hit by a veritable storm of positive interest in the product.

But that was then and this is now and tomorrow is something else again, and if Microsoft wish to dig into their well-known bag of dirty tricks, then no one can stop them, and any ISV tempted to play 'catch up' would be a fool to try, for the rules of the game have been changed by Microsoft, who undoubtedly have long planned for this day and find the new chaos entirely to their liking.

Yet it is not Microsoft who are ultimately to blame - no, the fault lies elsewhere: with the victims, with those who encourage Microsoft by ignorantly and irresponsibly using a product which is universally condemned, by those who could not bother to take care of themselves even though others have up to now attempted to help them and warn them, by those who allow Microsoft to put them in such a ridiculous situation in the first place.

For a user of Windows XP to notice that third party software will suddenly not work where once it has; to know (or at least be responsible for knowing) that the operating system is changing all the time while the software is not; to not question why this has happened; to not at all question the use of Windows XP; to address the issue not to Microsoft but to the vendor of the software: this is sheer blind ignorance and idiocy.

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