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The Courts Microsoft Upgrades Windows Technology

Microsoft Wins Windows XP Downgrade Lawsuit 203

Posted by timothy
from the that's-just-like-your-judgment-man dept.
CWmike writes "A federal judge has dismissed a year-old lawsuit against Microsoft over alleged antitrust violations for the 'downgrade' rules it set for Windows Vista and XP. The order put an end to the lawsuit filed by Emma Alvarado in February 2009. In her original complaint, she accused Microsoft of coercing computer makers into forcing consumers who wanted to run Windows XP to first buy Windows Vista, or later, Windows 7, before they were allowed to downgrade to XP. The judge rejected Alvarado's accusations, saying that the plaintiff had not proved Microsoft benefited from the downgrade practices that it created and that OEMs implemented."
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Microsoft Wins Windows XP Downgrade Lawsuit

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  • How? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by leetrout (855221) on Friday February 26, 2010 @11:18PM (#31294182) Journal
    I'm not a lawyer but how do you not prove that they benefited by having OEMs sell the newer version of their software before allowing a downgrade path?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday February 26, 2010 @11:20PM (#31294194)

    As a user of Linux, OS X and Windows, Windows is still the worst. Unfortunately a lot of Linux flavours take their queue from Windows where they should be taking them from OS X.

  • by LostCluster (625375) * on Friday February 26, 2010 @11:23PM (#31294216)

    Microsoft is under no obligation to give you a license for Windows XP if it doesn't want to. They've removed it from the general marketplace, but have left even Windows 3.1 in the MSDN subscription packages, even if those are a high price to pay for an old operating system, it's still the going rate.

    What a waste of resources. This lawsuit had no hope, and the money spent would have been better off asking Congress to lower the copyright expiration standard for software.

  • by wizardforce (1005805) on Friday February 26, 2010 @11:32PM (#31294274) Journal

    Besides, this was already covered under anti-trust legislation as illegal tying [slashdot.org] as Vista was the unwanted product tethered to the purchase of most OEM computers. Unfortunately, the chances of this ever being enforced are slim in the United States.

  • by Nom du Keyboard (633989) on Friday February 26, 2010 @11:37PM (#31294316)

    The judge rejected Alvarado's accusations, saying that the plaintiff had not proved Microsoft benefited from the downgrade practices that it created and that OEMs implemented."

    Another stupid judge ruling our lives. Don't you think a judge ought to know something about the field he is ruling in before he is allowed to make judgments there? Would be nice, wouldn't it?

  • Re:Stupid Lawsuit (Score:5, Insightful)

    by wizardforce (1005805) on Friday February 26, 2010 @11:38PM (#31294318) Journal

    So this lady was suing because of what? Being slightly inconvenienced?

    In addition to tying the purchase of Vista to these machines, MS/OEMs charged a significant amount of money to replace Vista with the desired OS (Windows XP) which she claimed raised prices relative to a competitive marketplace which is certainly true.

    And Vista wasn't bad at all. Especially with a new machine that had the proper drivers.

    That is subjective and further irrelevant because the question is not whether you wanted Vista on the machine but whether the purchaser wants Vista on the machine. To her and millions of others, Vista was very undesirable.

  • Re:Stupid Lawsuit (Score:2, Insightful)

    by HermMunster (972336) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @12:09AM (#31294480)

    My general opinion of Microsoft is that they don't make good software, they make software that's just good enough. That's my personal opinion.

  • by HeronBlademaster (1079477) <heron@xnapid.com> on Saturday February 27, 2010 @12:13AM (#31294504) Homepage

    Unfortunately a lot of Linux flavours take their cue from Windows

    FTFY. "Queue" means something else entirely.

    At any rate, I don't think I'd say Windows sucks any worse than pick-your-own-distro-Linux. Why? Because I use them for entirely different purposes. As long as I'm a PC gamer, neither Linux nor OSX is going to serve my needs; as such I can hardly say Windows "sucks", since it's the only OS that actually does something I really want to do! (And no, wine is not sufficient.)

    If you're going to say "Windows is worse than Linux", you really do need to qualify that with what tasks you're talking about; clearly, each OS has its own strengths and weaknesses, and it's silly to pretend one is unilaterally better or worse than the rest.

  • by Belial6 (794905) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @12:22AM (#31294560)
    Having recently started working with a Mac, I am actually really surprised at how far behind Windows and Linux OSX is in UI. It is inconsistent, and poorly designed compared to it's modern counterparts. I mean, you have to jump through some pretty fiery logic hoops to come up with a good reason that a green plus would shrink a window.
  • by Iyonesco (1482555) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @01:19AM (#31294822)

    72.54% of Windows users continue to use XP, so it is abundantly clear that the the market prefers XP to 7/Vista. If Microsoft had any competitors they would be forced to continue selling XP in order to avoid losing market share, however their monopoly means they do not have to worry about this since there literally aren't any competitors*. They are therefore abusing their monopoly by forcing 7/Vista onto a market that does not want it. What the judge says is true and Microsoft really aren't benefiting from this since they get a sale whether it's XP or 7, but that doesn't change the fact that this is a clear case of severe monopoly abuse. I certainly feel abused because I want to buy a laptop with Windows XP but all the options in my price range come with Windows 7 Home Premium. How can the judge conclude this isn't monopoly abuse? Somebody get the EU!

    *Mac OS is not a direct competitor to Windows since I can't legitimately install Mac OS on my PC. Alternatives like Linux aren't quite ready for the mainstream desktop user yet.

  • by westlake (615356) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @01:50AM (#31294950)

    As a user of Linux, OS X and Windows, Windows is still the worst. Unfortunately a lot of Linux flavours take their queue from Windows where they should be taking them from OS X.

    I believe the word you are looking for is "cue." That said:

    The latest client OS webstats from Net Applications, W3Schools, and others, should be out early next week. There have been some surprises posted already: Windows 7 eclipses Vista on Steam, 64-bit dominating 32-bit [arstechnica.com] 1 in 5 Windows PC gamers running 64 Bit Win 7.

    The one certainty is that Linux will be bringing up the rear.

    The Apple OSX model is a tightly integrated - tightly controlled - bundle of OS, UI, hardware, apps and marketing. That targets a profitable upscale niche market little changed in 33 years.

    It's not a comfortable fit for a geek.

    Windows is shamelessly middle class and commercial.

    It is good, serviceable, tech that is available in every form factor and at every price point. The "protected path" is there for the user who thinks Netflix and Blu-Ray offer something of value.

    Windows doesn't compell you to buy Corel Draw and MS Publisher when Inkscape and Scribus are available. But neither does it give the GIMP a free ride because of its ideological purity or political correctness.

    That seems to be what most folks want.

  • Re:How? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by tsm_sf (545316) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @02:40AM (#31295134) Journal
    It arrives as a properly configured and fully functional bundle of hardware and software or it is returned for refund or exchange under warranty.

    When was the last time you bought a new computer?
  • by Eth1csGrad1ent (1175557) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @05:02AM (#31295618)
    Instead of counting as an XP sale. It is instead counted as a Vista sale, and the marketing clowns at Microsoft get to beat their chests about how well the uptake of Vista was going (in stark contrast to the bad trade press no less). Nothing builds momentum like manufactured momentum...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 27, 2010 @05:32AM (#31295678)

    Even if you buy your rather strange argument, the proper forum to regulate the behavior of large corporations is the government not individual random lawsuits.

  • Re:Stupid Lawsuit (Score:4, Insightful)

    by IANAAC (692242) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @09:35AM (#31296340)

    My general opinion of Microsoft is that they don't make good software, they make software that's just good enough. That's my personal opinion.

    That's pretty much my opinion on any current desktop operating system. They're all just good enough. I currently use Linux pretty much exclusively, except for a VM instance of XP, so I've learned how to deal with and get around anything that bugs me, but I would imagine the same could be said for both OSX and WinX.

    There really hasn't been anything new in the desktop world for decades, other than eye candy. Filesystems (which actually could have an impact on how we handle our data) have tended to evolve, rather than radically change.

  • by Blakey Rat (99501) on Saturday February 27, 2010 @02:16PM (#31298158)

    As long as Microsoft wants to enjoy the lucrative benefits of being a singular part of society's information infrastructure, society ought to have a say in how Microsoft is run.

    Society already has a say. They can stop buying Windows.

Never invest your money in anything that eats or needs repainting. -- Billy Rose

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