Giant Eagle has been giving Apple computers to schools because it is the right thing to do. The business of selling groceries has nothing to do with computers or educating children but they do it for the good will of the community.
The woman I met in the waiting room mentioned to me that Windows 7 lacks DOS support. She also claimed that Windows XP-backward support is only provided with a those with a license for XP for use with virtualization. More Microsoft products to buy! Microsoft confirms it all here.
While Microsoft wants you to stop using all of your applications and games written for DOS or Windows XP, Windows system programmers are supposed to port all of their BAT scripts to “PowerShell.” I borrowed a Windows 7 machine to verify this for myself. Here is a screenshot.
As a professional system administrator, I hereby tell Microsoft that the PowerShell innovation is too little too late. Why would I leave Linux for Windows 7? Bash, Perl, Python, GCC… these are all open source are basic part of Linux to customize my environment and script my operating system. Ever since 1995, an open source program called Cygwin has been bringing all of these programming tools to Windows users. Open Source has been compensating for the inadequacies of the Microsoft-provided environment because it is the right thing to do. Fifteen years later Microsoft thinks I will be satisfied with PowerScript: a closed-source .Net-based development environment that is not even backwards-compatible with DOS BAT. No thanks Microsoft.
Thank you to open source contributors doing the right thing and helping Windows users where Microsoft fails their own customers. You are doing the right thing.
When Microsoft’s market share is less than 50% come June 30, 2011, open source will continue to be here to support Microsoft’s legacy applications.
Update: I assumed that Powershell was a closed source Microsoft-only shell-based scripting language. I stand corrected. Again, with the power of open source AND bash, Linux, MacOSX, legacy Windows, and mobile Windows users can use Powershell on their systems with pash: http://pash.sourceforge.net/
Microsoft can no longer hold a monopoly over even their own proprietary environments.