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Microsoft's CEO Says He Wants to Unify Windows

samzenpus posted about 4 months ago | from the by-your-powers-combined dept.

Microsoft 322

Deathspawner writes A lot of people have never been able to understand the logic behind Microsoft's Windows RT, with many urging the company to kill it off so that it can focus on more important products, like the mainline Windows. Well, this is probably not going to come as a huge surprise, especially in light of mass layoffs announced last week, but Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella has said that his company will be working to combine all Windows versions into a unified release by next year.

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Best Wishes ! (5, Funny)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | about 4 months ago | (#47519371)

Hope that he has a better luck in unifying Windows than those who wanted to unify Unixes

Re:Best Wishes ! (4, Insightful)

mythosaz (572040) | about 4 months ago | (#47519409)

Unices? Who knows.

Anyway, it'll be a little easier since they have full control of all Windows production. Nobody has to convince another distribution.

I'd love to see a single UI that works across 4" phones and 7" tablets with gorilla glass, and 13" laptops and 10" convertibles with membrane keyboards, and 24" desktops with 101-keyboards, and 60" XBox Ones with controllers but I'm not holding my breath.

Re:Best Wishes ! (5, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about 4 months ago | (#47519471)

History isn't encouraging, though. They've been pursuing the dream of one windows to rule them all since the days when that involved smearing a crude layer of flayed win95 across winCE and pretending it was a good fit for PDAs.

Now that hardware has advanced they have a much better shot at architectural unification (if memory serves, NT has basically edged out everything else except for whatever CE support they provide for legacy customers); but UI? That won't go well.

Re:Best Wishes ! (5, Funny)

Cryacin (657549) | about 4 months ago | (#47519513)

Meet the new boss. Same as the boss before the old boss.

Re:Best Wishes ! (-1)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47519669)

Unify Windows?

With a HAMMER!

Re:Best Wishes ! (0)

Dracos (107777) | about 4 months ago | (#47519597)

I think it goes back further than that, when they slathered the NT4 UI on top of DOS to create Win95.

Re:Best Wishes ! (2)

Bugler412 (2610815) | about 4 months ago | (#47519657)

Um, Win95 predated NT4 by a pretty significant amount of time. I remember beta'ing the wn95 interface on the released NT 3.51 though

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

chuckugly (2030942) | about 4 months ago | (#47519791)

Was Chicago DOS or NT based? I forget.

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

Sable Drakon (831800) | about 4 months ago | (#47519893)

Chicago (Windows 95) was built from DOS.

Re:Best Wishes ! (3, Insightful)

Bugler412 (2610815) | about 4 months ago | (#47519913)

Chicago was what became Windows 95, DOS was present as something vaguely like a "kernel" although that definition doesn't fit well. The 32 bit mode stuff was layered on top of DOS. NT4 was the first shipping version that used the NT kernel with the Win95 interface, that was codenamed "Cairo" and was really mostly a shell update using the NT 3.51 underpinnings.

Re:Best Wishes ! (5, Insightful)

techno-vampire (666512) | about 4 months ago | (#47519587)

I'd love to see a single UI that works across...

You might, but I, at least, wouldn't because what you'd end up with was a UI that worked equally badly on all types of screens and wasn't really right for any of them. I'm not a fan of Microsoft, preferring to use Linux, but I will say that they're right in not trying to shoehorn a One True UI onto everything.

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about 4 months ago | (#47519781)

> You might, but I, at least, wouldn't because what you'd end up with was a UI that worked equally badly on all types of screens and wasn't really right for any of them

Sorta like today, then.

Re:Best Wishes ! (4, Funny)

techno-vampire (666512) | about 4 months ago | (#47519855)

From what I've heard, the current UI for Windows was designed for a tablet, then forced onto desktops, but that's just hearsay because, as I wrote above, I only use Linux.

Re:Best Wishes ! (2)

Sable Drakon (831800) | about 4 months ago | (#47519857)

Are you stoned? A single UI for all isn't going to work. It's been tried again and again, and failed miserably each time. Why? Diferent formfactors do different things. What works on a tablet doesn't work on a PC or a Console. Case in point: Windows 8/WP8/Xbox Dashboard. It's a relatively consistent experience from device to device, the problem is the mode of usage has changed. There's your hangup right there.

Re:Best Wishes ! (2)

bondsbw (888959) | about 4 months ago | (#47520141)

A single UI experience (fixed and fluid layouts) isn't the right way to think about it. Doing that ends in apps that work well for one device but not others.

Web design has already solved this problem in the form of adaptive and responsive design. Make your app conform to the space it is given. Windows 8 apps have this capability, where many provide a somewhat different (phone-like) UI when in snap view, i.e. when the horizontal space is limited.

Going one step further, I really like ideas like those promised in Ubuntu for tablets (http://www.ubuntu.com/tablet). It goes a step further by having the UI respond to the type of input that is available. Using a touchscreen gets a full-screen UI, add a mouse/keyboard gives you windowed UI, putting it on a TV gives yet a different UI.

(I'm thinking Windows Threshold is going in the direction of Ubuntu for tablets. But legacy apps will remain for many years, and that limitation will unfortunately stall some of the efforts to build an OS based on adaptive design principles.)

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

Sable Drakon (831800) | about 4 months ago | (#47520163)

Now that might actually work out, so long as you've got extremely strict guidelines governing how it works and when it should kick into effect. It doesn't take much for an adaptive interface to completely fall apart just because a few cross-device apps don't play by the rules.

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519915)

Wasn't this what they tried with windows 8?

I think they really want to unify the APIs and programming languages and the submission process for apps in the store (instead of having various apps stores for phone, pc, tablet, xbox).

That would be much more intelligent, as opposed to try to push the exact same interface from 3" phones to 60" (or IMAX screens while we are at it) that ship has sailed and it did not go over well.

Re:Best Wishes ! (5, Funny)

arglebargle_xiv (2212710) | about 4 months ago | (#47519947)

I'd love to see a single UI that works across...

Microsoft have already done that. In Windows 8 they unified the Windows interface around the design for the vast number of Windows cellphones out there, leaving the totally insignificant Windows desktop/laptop market to wither. The overwhelming market response has justified this decision, in as little as twenty years Windows 8 could even overtake XP.

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

Tablizer (95088) | about 4 months ago | (#47519639)

When Unix was united it was called Multics (back in the mid 60's). Now that it's split into multiple branches, it's called "Unix". Logic!

Re:Best Wishes ! (3, Interesting)

roc97007 (608802) | about 4 months ago | (#47519793)

As a practical matter, Linux is the unified Unix. Or as unified as its a-gonna get.

Re:Best Wishes ! (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about 4 months ago | (#47520131)

Uh. Nope. Completely nope.

Read some history [google.com] then come back and participate in the discussion if you wish.

Server 2012 already looks like Windows 8. (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519671)

I had to use Windows Server 2012 for the first time a few days ago. Jesus Fucking Christ, I had no idea they had brought the Windows 8 Metro Hipster UI over to their server line of OSes. I couldn't belive it. It was damn near impossible to use.

Those are the only two Windows OSes that people actually use. It looked to me like they have already been fully unified. Both Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8 are equally impossible to use effectively.

Re:Server 2012 already looks like Windows 8. (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about 4 months ago | (#47519811)

> Both Windows Server 2012 and Windows 8 are equally impossible to use effectively.

$$PROFIT$$!!!!!

Wait, what?

Re:Server 2012 already looks like Windows 8. (2)

Penguinisto (415985) | about 4 months ago | (#47520083)

Well, there's always the Core Installation... well, if you really like PowerShell.

(...and seriously, bash is 10 miles more flexible, effective, intuitive...)

Oh, my God. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519379)

They have a disease!

The Unified Death of Microsoft? Is there hope? (2)

itsybitsy (149808) | about 4 months ago | (#47519387)

Hopefully this "unified" Windows will finally kill off Microsoft.

Hmm (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519415)

Where have I heard this before?

Windows 2000 .net

This is not a new idea.

Re:Hmm (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519545)

I think you must have heard this when reading the writings of Isildur, after the battle of Dagorlad.

      Windows Three for the Elven-kings under the sky,
        Windows Seven for the Dwarf-lords in their halls of stone,
        Windows Nine for Mortal Men doomed to die,
        One Windows for the Dark Lord on his dark throne
        In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

        One Windows to rule them all, One Windows to find them,
        One Windows to bring them all and in the darkness bind them

        In the Land of Mordor where the Shadows lie.

Re:Hmm (0)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about 4 months ago | (#47519675)

MOD PARENT UP ^

moving... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519437)

I'm SOOOO glad CentOS 7 is now out!

Death bell tolling for thee.... (4, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | about 4 months ago | (#47519467)

People HATE windows 8 because they are trying to force a touch interface on it, most people do not buy touch montiors so it is less than intuitive.. now they want to make it even more touch oriented? unless they are going to send me FREE 27" and 40" 4K touchscreen monitors it's not going to be worth a damn.

STOP TRYING TO UNIFY THE PC AND TABLET/PHONE WORLDS! I am so sick of companies trying to do this, it's a failure an utter failure.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

knarfling (735361) | about 4 months ago | (#47519503)

I have to agree. I think I understand why they want to do this: Only one code base, less overhead and more profit.

But it is a stupid idea. The different devices provide different functions and shouldn't look the same or be the same. Servers are different from desktops which are different from tablets which are different from phones.

For those who need a bad car analogy, it is like trying to put the same user interface on bicycles, motorcycles, cars, trucks and trains. No one complains that their car doesn't have handlebars. Or that there is no steering wheel on a their bicycle or motorcycle.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (4, Interesting)

lord_mike (567148) | about 4 months ago | (#47519573)

Here's a real life car analogy... GM in the 80's "unified" all their drivetrains. The same engines/transmissions were available in the Pontiac, Oldsmobile, Chevrolet, etc. The only differences were in the style, body, and nameplate. It didn't particularly go over well with auto enthusiasts or consumers in general. The GM brands became rather superfluous, and consumers were quite lukewarm to the generic "all-in-one" options for GM cars. GM cars from the 80's are considered to be the worst built and least desirable of the company's history. You don't see any of those models still driving around with classic plates on them. Few consumers wanted them then, even fewer want to preserve them now.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (2)

Dracos (107777) | about 4 months ago | (#47519613)

Three letters: GNX.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519677)

Still crap.
Weakest crankshaft I've ever seen in a production engine.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 4 months ago | (#47520135)

Here's a real life car analogy... GM in the 80's "unified" all their drivetrains.

It wasn't just GM. Everyone who hadn't already done this (that is, everyone but the Japanese) did this in the 1980s. It is in fact the general trend for all automakers. VW Group exemplifies this tendency today. The 350 chevy continued to be a highly desirable powerplant for pretty much all purposes right through the 1980s, and up until they developed its successor, the LS1.

GM cars from the 80's are considered to be the worst built and least desirable of the company's history. You don't see any of those models still driving around with classic plates on them.

That has nothing to do with the engines, which for the most part were the same engines from the prior decade, and everything to do with American producers trying to compete on cost with the Japanese.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (5, Interesting)

FuegoFuerte (247200) | about 4 months ago | (#47519591)

I think/hope you misunderstand. Where Ballmer really wanted to have one Windows to rule them all, with one crappy UI on all of them, I'm hopeful Nadella is talking more of a unified base with UI adjustments/differences as needed for each device type. You can have a unified release of the base OS with one style interface for tablets, another for desktops, and possibly another for servers. Windows Server has been doing this for a while, with some versions coming with full UI and others with just the CLI. They're a unified release - they come out at the same time and use the same base, but there are different UIs available, similar to one release of Slackware coming with multiple window managers and it being the user's choice which one to use (if any).

So, to give people their "bad car analogy" it's like selling an International DT466 engine in a school bus, a semi tractor, a very large pickup truck, a combine, and a tractor. It's the same engine ("unified release"), but the user picks the chassis/body appropriate for their need. If Microsoft can successfully pull that off, it will be a big win for both the company and consumers.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about 4 months ago | (#47519869)

> I'm hopeful Nadella is talking more of a unified base with UI adjustments/differences as needed for each device type.

Now you're talking. On the one hand, it's an obvious strategy, so Microsoft will do something else instead -- like, a unified and mostly inappropriate UI over different code bases. Um, like, now.

On the other hand, Nadella is a new guy. He's not Ballmer. Maybe he'll surprise everyone in the freaking world and do the right thing.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

sabt-pestnu (967671) | about 4 months ago | (#47519927)

Running with your bad car analogy, they also package that engine for the subcompact and electric SUV models. It's just that you can't reach the steering wheel on the one, and it's entirely counter to why you would buy the vehicle for the other.

Some chassis/body limitations may apply...

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 4 months ago | (#47520147)

So, to give people their "bad car analogy" it's like selling an International DT466 engine in a school bus, a semi tractor, a very large pickup truck, a combine, and a tractor.

The thing is that the DT466, the T444, and even the IDI engines (e.g. A185) were all used successfully in all of those contexts, and people even swap DT466s into 3/4 ton pickups (let alone those other engines.) But shoehorning full Windows onto a handheld would be more like putting one of those engines into a roadster.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519609)

I haven't logged in in ages but anyway...

I don't really think this is all that stupid. I heard elsewhere that the OS will detect (will this need a new API and drivers?) what input methods are available and adjust the UI accordingly. In which case the UI will be different on different devices for intents and purposes. On the other hand all this is doing is making the products all use the same kernel and support the exact same run times. Linux has been doing something similar-ish for quite a while. After you can find Linux on the biggest HPC setups down to a smartphone and cheap ARM uCs. And along with Linux you will find the same OS API and sometimes even the same managed environment like java. So if done right I don't really think it's all that stupid but then again...

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

roc97007 (608802) | about 4 months ago | (#47519879)

> I heard elsewhere that the OS will detect (will this need a new API and drivers?) what input methods are available and adjust the UI accordingly. In which case the UI will be different on different devices for intents and purposes.

That's.... actually... a really good idea. Microsoft would actually be innovative, and for once, ahead of the pack. I'm trying to wrap my mind around that.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519643)

Like you I also understand why they would want to do this. I even think it would be a great thing, except people run the OS to run Applications. And those need their own interface. It doesn't matter that Windows is elegantly scaling and adapting to whatever device you're running it on if the programs you want to use can't do the same. Not everyone has MS bucks to throw at tablet and phone and desktop interfaces for niche uses and not every user wants only the MS apps, so I can't see this going well. The market is neatly and naturally segmented. Don't waste money trying to spit-glue it together.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (3, Insightful)

roc97007 (608802) | about 4 months ago | (#47519837)

> I think I understand why they want to do this: Only one code base, less overhead and more profit.

Not if nobody buys it.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519571)

There's no earthly reason why a "unified Windows" should have to look and feel the same in radically different environments. That's why Windows 8 was so annoying - it was, simultaneously, futile and unnecessary.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519733)

Uhm, it's not that hard after about 15 minutes. Just move your mouse to the corners and play with it. Or god forbid you actually read the manual.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

HiThere (15173) | about 4 months ago | (#47519751)

Even if they did, and I were to agree to their EULA, I don't like lifting my finger up to touch the screen. Some things that are reasonable for tablet computers are only reasonable for tablet computers. This might be one of them, but I'm not even sure it's reasonable for tablets.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (5, Insightful)

plopez (54068) | about 4 months ago | (#47519771)

If it was a good idea Apple would have done it long ago ;)

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

naringas (733106) | about 4 months ago | (#47520041)

and how do you know apple isn't gonna do that?

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about 4 months ago | (#47520143)

Apple is busy. They're off huffing Android tailpipe fumes these days.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (2)

Yunzil (181064) | about 4 months ago | (#47519807)

They're not talking about the interface. They're talking about the underlying nuts-and-bolts stuff.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (4, Insightful)

Charliemopps (1157495) | about 4 months ago | (#47519847)

People HATE windows 8 because they are trying to force a touch interface on it, most people do not buy touch montiors so it is less than intuitive.. now they want to make it even more touch oriented? unless they are going to send me FREE 27" and 40" 4K touchscreen monitors it's not going to be worth a damn.

STOP TRYING TO UNIFY THE PC AND TABLET/PHONE WORLDS! I am so sick of companies trying to do this, it's a failure an utter failure.

They certainly can unify the PC and Tablet. They just have to give up on the insane idea that the UI will be identical between devices. The mouse didn't work on a small screen so they put the touchscreen on my 52" TV?!?! Seriously, who thought that was a good idea?

This is a very easy thing to fix... XP/Win7 style desk for PCs, Android style for anything smaller than 10", Remote/MediaPC controlls for TVs. And... wait for it... Alt-windows key toggles between UIs for those that like different ones at different times. Eeegads! Am I the next Wozniak with my insanely brilliant ideas or what? Oh wait... no, it's just that obvious.

Re:Death bell tolling for thee.... (1)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about 4 months ago | (#47519973)

Sounds more like he means he wants one OS that people can write programs for and have it properly scale to the device, within reason. I don't think he's talking about the GUI. One bit of information that supports this is how he's combining the various windows teams into one, so that you don't have one group making the desktop OS, and another making the phone OS, and a third making the XBox OS. One team builds and maintains it, so that each device type shares the same core functionality. There will probably be GUI similarities, and I'm sure many of them will suck. But hopefully we'll avoid situations like the Windows 8 keyboard/touchscreen dichotomy in the future, since the design workload won't be as segmented.

Waiting for Windows to come full circle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519473)

What if Microsoft released a commercial "Window Manager" for Linux?

Re:Waiting for Windows to come full circle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519999)

I remember a GUI for dos but it wasn't windows. Can't remember what it was called.

Re: Waiting for Windows to come full circle (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47520067)

GEM or GEOS

Tablet Interface (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519475)

Wouldn't it be cool if they merged tablet-style touch functionality in to Windows? Just think how unified it'd be then; you'd only need one operating system for all of your... wait, they did? A disaster, you say?

I Predict... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519483)

the return of Microsoft Bob on top of Windows Vista renamed as Windows 3000!

Microsoft Linux (1)

xeoron (639412) | about 4 months ago | (#47519491)

The only distribution that runs on everything, and gives the complete MS Windows experience with the power of Linux.

MSFT up 50% in last year (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519493)

Which is not bad. Not bad at all. Now all we need to for Putin to keel over, Gaza to fall into the sea, and ObamaCare to implode from within and without, and of course a republican congress and whitehouse.

link broken (1)

clockwise_music (594832) | about 4 months ago | (#47519531)

The link to the actual article "a unified release" is completely empty... nice to see all the comments from people who haven't even read the article yet.

Yay.. This is easy to imagine (5, Funny)

brxndxn (461473) | about 4 months ago | (#47519533)

In typical Microsoft "All heads in our asses" fashion, they release Windows 8 with two completely separate UI's.. One doesn't work at all for desktop.. and the other barely works for desktop. Hell.. opening a PDF in Windows 8 is still a goddamn nightmare.

Now that they're unifying Windows, we know exactly what the customer wants:
1. UI separate from kernel (vector graphic UI for desktops, 2d UI for battery-powered devices)
2. Ability to customize installation (ie.. Windows embedded version, Windows business edition, Windows uber Gamer edition, Windows "I install Weatherbug and other stupid applications" edition, Windows "Gimme the shitty Widnows 8 UI" edition)
3. Ability to control data usage (ie.. Windows "I'm being charged for the amount of data because AT&T and Verizon are shitty companies edition")

What will we get:
1. METRO 80's colors EDITION
2. Cannot multitask edition
3. Super fucking bloated edition
4. We changed shit because we wanted to change shit and good fucking luck finding it edition
5. We give you errors if you're not connected to the Internet edition
6. We update your computer when you're trying to turn it off and take it with you edition

Bleh.. this was a minimal effort bitch session.. Microsoft already knows they suck and we only buy Windows because it's pretty much forced on us

Re:Yay.. This is easy to imagine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519761)

You know what would be nice?

Windows Fundamentals for Legacy PCs, Windows 9 edition.

Re:Yay.. This is easy to imagine (1)

CrashNBrn (1143981) | about 4 months ago | (#47519933)

Definitely a lot of truth there. But... come on - opening a PDF is a breeze (in win8) -- it's just is a full-screen "app". At least we *CAN* open a PDF without Adobe or yet another 3rd party tool.

Re:Yay.. This is easy to imagine (2)

Bing Tsher E (943915) | about 4 months ago | (#47520159)

Perhaps grandparent commenter works for Adobe, which would explain why he described it as a nightmare.

Re:Yay.. This is easy to imagine (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47520059)

In typical Microsoft "All heads in our asses" fashion, they release Windows 8 with two completely separate UI's.. One doesn't work at all for desktop.. and the other barely works for desktop. Hell.. opening a PDF in Windows 8 is still a goddamn nightmare.

Now that they're unifying Windows, we know exactly what the customer wants:
1. UI separate from kernel (vector graphic UI for desktops, 2d UI for battery-powered devices)
2. Ability to customize installation (ie.. Windows embedded version, Windows business edition, Windows uber Gamer edition, Windows "I install Weatherbug and other stupid applications" edition, Windows "Gimme the shitty Widnows 8 UI" edition)
3. Ability to control data usage (ie.. Windows "I'm being charged for the amount of data because AT&T and Verizon are shitty companies edition")

What will we get:
1. METRO 80's colors EDITION
2. Cannot multitask edition
3. Super fucking bloated edition
4. We changed shit because we wanted to change shit and good fucking luck finding it edition
5. We give you errors if you're not connected to the Internet edition
6. We update your computer when you're trying to turn it off and take it with you edition

Bleh.. this was a minimal effort bitch session.. Microsoft already knows they suck and we only buy Windows because it's pretty much forced on us

I like you!

Re:Yay.. This is easy to imagine (2)

rasmusbr (2186518) | about 4 months ago | (#47520063)

7. Ha ha ha did you think you could launch a long-running task and not babysit it to prevent Windows from restarting edition...

Oh wait, I have that one on my laptop.

Re:Yay.. This is easy to imagine (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47520279)

It's like Canonical with Unity... "no, there is no shortcut in the default file-browser to open a terminal... that might confuse and scare our target audience".

Seriously? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519537)

You want the same version running on servers as phones?

Ultra bloated phones here we come then............

jack of all trades (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519547)

master of none

Microsoft is doomed (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519575)

If anything they should be diversifying and spinning off new organizations. "Unifying windows" is doubling down on the same brain-damaged strategy that brought us Windows 8.

OK MS bashers. (1, Interesting)

wbr1 (2538558) | about 4 months ago | (#47519577)

I am no MS fanboi. I did not RFTA. However, windows 9 is already supposed to ship with both touch and classic interfaces.The default will be chosen by device type but presumably it will be changable. The big complaint here is WinRT - which is ARM not Intel.

I would hope this unification means that there will be suffice emulation built into windows that it will pick the kernel/libs/drivers required by the CPU arch, and userland apps can run in emulation (even if slowly) if they are compiled for the wrong proc. This would be a unified windows, that allows x86 and 64 bit apps run on ARM and vice versa (although the other direction is likely not as useful). And have a usable interface. This may actually be a killer OS. It is the next version after a bad one!

Re:OK MS bashers. (1)

lord_mike (567148) | about 4 months ago | (#47519605)

Win NT had a hardware abstraction layer that supposedly made everything portable... I think you still had to compile applications to whatever native architecture it was running on though. Maybe they will go back to promoting .NET which ran bytecode? Who knows with Microsoft.

Re:OK MS bashers. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519835)

I always thought it would be interesting to have an ARM processor as the general CPU and an AMD64 processor as a high power coprocessor. I was hoping the Windows RT/8 kernels would have lead to that but I guess not.

Re:OK MS bashers. (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 4 months ago | (#47520115)

They tried that with FX-32 on Alpha (NT4). It wasn't worth it.

I think Nadella is talking about a unified codebase, like Apple with OSX/iOS and Linux/*BSD, heck even Solaris (a few poor saps are still using that - those with Stockholm Syndrome might even comment here). It's really unlikely that Microsoft will drop the ARM arch - there are too many opportunities there.

Say what you want, but Nadella seems to be making decisions like an engineer, not a fat marketing stooge or a conniving aspie beancounter.

Better Information Here (3, Informative)

dmbrun (907271) | about 4 months ago | (#47519585)

Re:Better Information Here (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519853)

Sorry...you lost me at zdnet.

link (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519623)

Yet another link to nowhere in the summary.
I wonder if the editors even understand what their job is.

CEO name? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519629)

Is he called "Says He" or "Satya Nadella"? Make up your mind Slashdot.

bulllllshit (3, Interesting)

slashmydots (2189826) | about 4 months ago | (#47519637)

BULLSHIT! What he wants is to make ongoing costs just like Xbox Live, skydrive, Office 365, and all the other crap they've tried to push. No thanks, I don't want to pay $1200 a seat over a decade to use Office, thanks. EVERYONE is copying Call of Duty and the DLC era. The new CEO of MS was in charge of cloud services! I am NOT paying a subscription to use ANYTHING from Microsoft. The end. He needs to get over that or get the fuck out.

x86 JIT recompiler for ARM, anyone? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519641)

I only use Windows on rare occasions, so I may be missing something, but why doesn't Microsoft include a x86 JIT recompiler for ARM, just as Apple did with their PowerPC to x86 migration? I know they are locking WIndows RT to Microsoft's software portal, so running your old .exe file isn't possible, but it feels to me that they did this partially because they don't have a way to run it. Had they implement a recompiler and let you run any old .exe file, Windows RT would probably be doing a lot better than it is today.

Everyone thought an ARM version of Windows would be the death of Intel and AMD, yet Microsoft botched it so bad that they need not worry.

One Windows (0)

mrflash818 (226638) | about 4 months ago | (#47519653)

"One Windows to rule them all, One Windows to find them,
One Windows to bring them all and in the darkness bind them" -- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/O... [wikipedia.org]

Of course (1)

Lije Baley (88936) | about 4 months ago | (#47519679)

This is from page 5 of the Management bible. "Consolidation is always better". Don't question it!

well (1)

WeeBit (961530) | about 4 months ago | (#47519705)

I look forward to the day that Windows is uniform/compliant across the board with all other Internet scripting. If they can do that then I will take them serious. If not then they can just shut up cause I heard it all before.

I know I'm not expected to RTFA... (3, Interesting)

MtHuurne (602934) | about 4 months ago | (#47519715)

The third link is not actually a link, since the <a> tag is missing the href attribute. I wanted to check what the CEO actually said, since "unify" could mean a lot of things.

Are they going for x86-64 only, killing the ARM-based WIndows RT, as Hot Hardware is reporting? They'd still have to keep ARM support for Windows Mobile. Perhaps they should have put Windows Mobile plus some tablet extensions on the low-budget tablets, that would have fit people's expectations a lot better.

Are they going for a single code base? In that case there would be multiple products created from that code base, so that doesn't tell us anything about the fate of Windows RT or any other specific products.

Are they going for a single product named Windows? While I think it would be good to drop the artificial home/pro/ultimate differentiation, having a different Windows for client and server use is still useful. Although that could be handled by having a different default configuration rather than an entirely different product.

Re:I know I'm not expected to RTFA... (1)

rahvin112 (446269) | about 4 months ago | (#47519739)

Gotta love a blank link!

Re:I know I'm not expected to RTFA... (1)

MtHuurne (602934) | about 4 months ago | (#47519765)

After reading the article from dmbrun's post [slashdot.org] , it seems what they're doing is a single code base, more shared APIs across Windows variants and a single store interface. So it's mostly focused on making it easy for developers to support multiple Windows variants. A smart move, but nothing revolutionary.

Re:I know I'm not expected to RTFA... (1)

Barlo_Mung_42 (411228) | about 4 months ago | (#47519885)

The title is very misleading.
They aren't going to make a single build that runs everywhere. They are (already have) going to consolidate the different groups making different versions of Windows (phone, pc, xbox, embedded etc) into one group. They are also going to make one store and one app platform. Things will still need to be compiled for different architecture.

Yes do that! (1)

Fallenhalo (1911940) | about 4 months ago | (#47519731)

Yes lets do that, lets take RT & Windows Mobile, two of the there worst performing software OS and shove it in to there main OS just encase they where not having enough problems making it half decent already. General rule of thumb: something that dose everything is not good at anything. Something that dose one things is good at it because that's all it has to do.

An OS UI designed by Fingerpainting Marketeers (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47519745)

.. this will not end well

Strategy looks like cleaning up rather than innova (1)

acscott (1885598) | about 4 months ago | (#47519773)

Lay off people. Close up products. Anybody can do this. It's standard MBA algorithm, squeeze a little here and there. Bob Lutz says that's the style that ruined American automobile industries.

The whole of Microsoft's strategy was laid bare by BG a long time ago: Sell OS licenses. Office was used to create a feedback loop. Now, Active Directory is part of that.

RT runs office, so it supports that strategy.

Make me CEO; I'll charge $250,000 a year. Problems solved, miracles cost extra.

Linux Mint 17 (4, Interesting)

RudyHartmann (1032120) | about 4 months ago | (#47519817)

How about natively booting Linux Mint 17 and putting 7 in Virtualbox if you must have this POS.

Re:Linux Mint 17 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47520101)

That's EXACTLY what I do... though I also have WinXP in VB, and... frankly, use WinXP way more often for Windows stuff.

Very old saying (4, Insightful)

jklovanc (1603149) | about 4 months ago | (#47519937)

Jack of all trades master of none.

No to a unified interface yes to unified software (3, Insightful)

Harlequin80 (1671040) | about 4 months ago | (#47519945)

If I could have a Win 7 style interface on my desktop / laptop. I really good touch interface for my tablet / phone and a really good lounge room interface for my xbox that could run the same software across all 3. Now that would be cool! RT wasn't crap because it was a different interface it was crap because it felt like it should run the same stuff as normal windows but didn't

Windows Godzilla ! (4, Funny)

gelfling (6534) | about 4 months ago | (#47519977)

Only 1.5 TB and it will run on ANYTHING (with 8x8 core processors and 32GB of RAM). Of course it still comes in 24 different variations that all licensed differently.

Why did they release Windows RT? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47520027)

Because everyone wanted Windows to run on ARM, despite Microsoft saying they wouldn't like it cause you can't run x86 software on ARM. You asked for it. They gave it to you. And it sucked every bit of what they promised.

Maybe... (1)

Atmchicago (555403) | about 4 months ago | (#47520197)

Good: Plug phone into dock, phone interface disappears, desktop interface comes up. Unplug phone, and it reverts. You carry all your files with you. You go to a dumb monitor + keyboard + mouse anywhere and *poof* you have your desktop with you, and it's online because your phone has data. Yeah, it'll be a bit slow - so don't do heavy number crunching and you're fine. And they'll need to make it impossible to run phone apps in desktop mode or vice versa. Some things must be disallowed (although crafty software could intelligently flip between the two).

Bad: phone has desktop interface; or desktop has phone interface.

Which will it be?

What a Good idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 4 months ago | (#47520219)

SO a bug will brick all copies now not just home/enterprise/server, and we get more stuff built into our OS's EG, Im a gamer I dont need alot of the "built in" programs/services, and alot I cannot disable.

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