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Compatibility woes / deprecation (Miscellaneous)

posted by Rugxulo(R) Homepage, Usono, 14.02.2009, 23:09

> But nobody seems to care a bit about the hybrid platforms win9x and
> classic macos.

People still use 'em, they just don't code for 'em. Probably because they either don't know how or lack the appropriate SDK. In case you haven't noticed, MS etc. don't make it easy to code for older OSes. They are only interested in their main platform of the day. (Things like Pelles C and Cygwin dropping Win9x support don't help in the least.)

> Somebody has to pick up the bill for the support, either in money or
> invested time. If the dos/win9x users aren't, who is?

Obviously not you. :-P

> [XP] stable network features, and no reboots for hw changes
> (like e.g. plug and play). This was the reason for me to move to w2k

A lot of good a "stable" OS is if you don't have any software that runs on it. Might as well use Whitix.

> Then start an archival group! Stop being the self-pitying beggar,
> and do something yourself!

I have to actually find older DOS versions before I can archive them!

> Submit patches, archive what is there,
> and work on driver support. (3rd party people can legally make
> win9x drivers afaik, and you can copy some of the hw knowledge
> from the other open platforms)

You know as well as anybody that drivers aren't easy to write.

> Moreover, make up your mind what you actually want to preserve, Dos
> or win9x. It sounds like win9x is a stopgap solution to get to Dos for you.

Win9x was just an example proving a point: compatibility is a lost art, and it is shunned for no good reason. If even Win2k is abandoned, what chance does anyone have? It really is a moving target, and it makes everything seem pointless. Why bother fixing what will just break again in the next release? In other words, once you find what works, keep it as long as possible! Or maybe you think that what was good once before (Win98SE or FPC 1.0.10) is truly crap in hindsight? (Doubt it.) "But it's not x86-64 with ten threads and UTF-16! It doesn't use my Blu-Ray drive and ZFS!" So? If it works it works.

DOS has the full DJGPP suite of (mostly GNU) tools including GCC and GNU Emacs, nice POSIX compatibility, LFN support, good NTVDM compatibility, and yet it's still considered "not good enough".

> For the next 5-10 years I think I can escape buying new hardware and
> new Windows. XP seams now to be "the os", "the standard" and it seams
> it can not be dropped.

You can't. If apps like QEMU and VirtualBox won't even support Win2k, you can't rely on XP for even three years, much less ten. Especially if your new hardware has no drivers. The point is that you can't rely on MS, Mozilla, Cygwin, or anybody else to support even what they used to support! Argh. In short, it's a sinkhole with no way out besides "upgrade upgrade upgrade".

"Doctor, it hurts when I do this." "Well, then don't do that." Great solution, doc, except that's no solution, it's a workaround. "XP works great as long as you don't use DOS. Vista works even better but even less with DOS." And yet DOS is ridiculed for all the hacks and workarounds it uses, but "newer" OSes aren't really any better, just different.

You can no more get mad at DOS for 8.3 (which can be fixed!) if you refuse to see flaws in other OSes, esp. things that used to work but broke for no good reason. The advantages are supposed to outweigh the disadvantages, but when even the "New Technology" gets deprecated, why bother at all? :confused:

EDIT: By the way, upgrading your OS or cpu only helps you, not everybody else. In other words, it's a hack, a workaround, not a true universal solution. If you're cheap (in effort), that will work, but otherwise it's not recommended (unless you like upgrading every six months or so: "hooray, DDR3 with Phenom II", big whoop). This was never meant to be an argument, only discussing a genuine problem and some possible solutions (Firefox example).

 

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