Gartner: Microsoft’s Vista will be the last of its kind

Apple Store“Vista will be the last version of Windows that exists in its current, monolithic form, according to Gartner,” Matthew Broersma reports for Techworld.

Broersma reports, “Instead, the research firm predicts, Microsoft will be forced to migrate Windows to a modular architecture tied together through hardware-supported virtualisation. ‘The current, integrated architecture of Microsoft Windows is unsustainable – for enterprises and for Microsoft,’ wrote Gartner analysts Brian Gammage, Michael Silver and David Mitchell Smith.”

“The problem is that the operating system’s increasing complexity is making it ever more difficult for enterprises to implement migrations, and impossible for Microsoft to release regular updates. This, in turn, stands in the way of Microsoft’s efforts to push companies to subscription licensing,” Broersma reports.

Broersma reports, “Next-generation Windows-based partitions ‘could run in parallel to partitions running kernels with the Vista/NT code base,’ wrote Gammage, Silver and Smith. They said Microsoft doesn’t agree with this vision, saying it’s identified problems with integrating data across partitions and creating a consistent user experience… Gartner expects a significant update to Vista in late 2008 or 2009 that will add virtualisation (in the form of a component called a hypervisor) and a service partition. The hypervisor will allow more frequent updates, and will make the Software Assurance subscription scheme effectively mandatory for Windows from around 2010, Gartner said.”

Full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “The Other Steve” for the heads up.]

MacDailyNews Take: The problem, defined charitably above as “increasing complexity,” is more properly described thusly: Windows is a bloated mess of old code, rewrites, add-ons, workarounds, and spaghetti code that was not designed at its core to be a networked OS and that no one person understands fully.

With Apple’s Mac OS X, the world’s most advanced operating system, the future’s right before your eyes. Get a Mac.

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  1. If Vista is the last line of Microsoft NT-based operating systems what is the incentive for PC users to spend cash today to upgrade their hardware to Vista? Microsoft’s new advertising slogan for Vista should be, “Upgrade your hardware now then buy Vista and buy obsolescence.” Because the price of hardware decreases and performance increases over time, it would make more sense for PC users to continue to limp along with Windows 2000 and XP and wait for Microsoft to attempt making another OS within 2 to 5 years. Alternatively, PC users can switch to Apple today and get everything that Microsoft has promised (and more) and has failed to deliver for more than half a decade.

    Based on recent history I have no confidence that Microsoft will be successful developing a universal OS to transition users to Vista’s replacement, so current Windows 2000 and XP and future Vista users will likely find themselves abandoned on the digital roadside when Vista’s replacement is eventually released. Additionally, I would like to read the comments and concerns of designers of Windows applications whose current products would be made functionally obsolete or completely useless when Vista’s replacement becomes Microsoft’s only supportable OS.

    Microsoft’s digital war has two fronts, Apple and Linux. Microsoft looks in its rear view mirror, sees no one, and assumes that they are winning the battle of digital relevancy. Unfortunately for Microsoft, the absence of competitors in the mirror is only because they are last in the race of intellectual prowess and technological superiority. Ballmer & Co. had better get moving before they become the sole supplier of operating systems for East Timor, Malawi, Somalia, and Tajikistan.

  2. Dear Break It Up: Only 2, 4, and 5 would be viable companies.

    Dear Mac Doc: Microsoft owns a significant portion of SCOUnix. If Microsoft had any brains whatsoever they’d take a nice secure SCO kernel, graft their Aero interface elements onto it and include virtual machines for running Vista, XP, 2k/NT, ME/98/95, and DOS programs in protected spaces with proper LittleSnitch-type firewalls.

  3. Lightspeed:

    …and what prevented Microsoft from “starting over” and “develop virtualization software” instead of progressing with this stinking corpse of Vista? I think that you give Microsoft much more credit than Microsoft deserves. It would be more likely to see Ballmer publicly praising the wonders of Leopard than see Microsoft admit that Vista was the biggest blunder they ever committed.

  4. microsoft other than anything has created the most successful operating system ever. I have personally worked on experimental OS projects and know how hard and large a project it is to make an OS. that said, they have successfully created the platform, with its flaws of course, but in this ecosystem, people can do their business, programmers know their application will work on every machine. if you think that is not much of a thing to accomplish, well I can surely say that you are only on the surface of things and got bored of updating your software. my advise to you, get a redhat and see how many updates you need o pull every week and compare that with a windows system. secure my …

  5. newtechnology:

    Define “most successful operating system”. Additionally, compare and contrast Windows with Linux and with OS X in terms of security, stability, features and functions, NT versus Unix, and promised times to release. You have two hours. Begin.

  6. When a security flaw is found in an application or service in Open Source software, such as Mac OS X or Linux, there is a growing community of developers of Open Source software that helps out and provide feedback to the company that produced the misbehaving software (eg Apple). Together, this community ensures a more secure set of software for the end user, because of the fact that it is Open Source not –completely controlled by one company like Microsoft has their setup. Also, the software in Open Source does not suck to begin with, like Microsoft has their setup…

  7. maczealot:

    Microsoft doesn’t want a lame 5% marketshare like Apple has. XP and OS X were both released in 2001. XP went on to sell 400 million copies while OS X only sold 19 million. History will repeat itself when Vista and Leopard are both released next year.

  8. The numbers are driven by massive corporate purchases; there certainly is never a one-to-one correlation of PC’s and users in institution or corporations. Many are simply terminals that are placeds for convenience and occasional use. By analogy coakroaches are a far more successful form of life than humans.

    Irrespective of the success or failure of Vista, it is indeed a derivative of Windows 3.x, 95, NT, 2000, and XP. What Microsoft does after Vista will be far more interesting. There is no doubt that Microsoft is the dominant player today, but that can change. Don’t believe it? Ask the Romans, the Spanish, the English, the US Railroads,etc.

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