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Windows 8 Pro price going from $40 to $200 on Feb 1 (microsoft.com)
33 points by djt 1588 days ago | hide | past | web | 48 comments | favorite

I'm still pissed off at them for not allowing me to upgrade or even purchase a standalone version of Windows 8. I live in Bolivia, why can't I purchase a DIGITAL GOOD using something like Paypal.

Every other online business accepts my hard earned money, Microsoft doesn't. Fuck 'em. (Pardon my french)

I really really wanted to go legit and buy myself a copy of Windows 8 but not legal paths are provided for me.

can you buy a copy from amazon and get it shipped?

The thing is: Why should I?

Why can I ilegally download a Windows 7 .ISO, apply a serial key and have it work?

Why can't I do the same for Windows 8 legally?

Maybe there's an obvious answer, but why can't they sell it in a non-upgrade version for download too (even at $200)?

I'm a Mac user who wants a legal Windows 8 VM but short of buying Windows 7 + the upgrade (except the online MS store doesn't seem to have 7) or joining MSDN ($700+) I can't find a legal way to do it.

There is no full-version retail Windows product, and probably never will be for future versions either. If you want to install on a new PC or VM, you are to buy the System Builder ('OEM') license.



Previously, the OEM license was only for installing Windows on PCs intended for sale. The newest System Builder license includes a provision allowing you to install it on a system or a virtual machine for personal use. That's why they don't need to produce a consumer retail box any more.

Ah yeah, I should have stressed the download part. My local Amazon (UK) has an OEM version available on DVD which is ultimately probably how I'll have to do it and then rip it to an ISO. But it's 2013.. c'mon MS.

yeah that sucks. It may be a deal with the OEMs thats creates this weird situation.

They run all their taxes through the country they stamp the discs in.

You could always pick up a copy of Windows XP on Craigslist or eBay for cheap. It's a bit of a pain, but you can still do a full reformat install so long as the installer detects the old installation first.

Alternatively, you could buy the copy of Windows XP, skip actually installing it, and work around the fact that you didn't. Legal i's dotted and t's crossed, pain of installing XP avoided.

I tried the WinXP thing but Bootcamp doesn't support XP anymore and it all starts getting difficult without a optical drive (find drive, rip, copy image to usb,...). I ended up just pirating it out of sheer annoyance and since it was the only way I could get Win7 working.

This is where that second line I wrote comes in.

I updated my win 8 release preview with the $40 price. And i have read online that pirated versions can also be upgraded. Maybe this is a mistake Microsoft means to make. People who pirate mostly aren't going to pay anyways, this way they at least get some money and get to convert non genuine users to genuine ones. A win-win for everyone.

I had an unlicensed (but legitimately obtained) copy of Windows 7 on a VM. I upgraded with the $40 Windows 8 upgrade, and it activated without a hitch.

Do you mean your Win 7 was on a volume license?

Sorry, I should have said "un-activated." It was a boxed version of Windows 7 Home Premium that I had run out of valid licenses for, so I just never activated it. I was then able to use the upgrade edition of Windows 8 to install and activate successfully. I have since reverted back to my un-activated install of Windows 7.

If you are doing this in a startup related context, joint Microsoft biz spark.

Doesn't EC2 come with Windows instances? You could try that.

Perhaps the most important question is... why would a desktop user want to "upgrade" to windows 8? Seriously, to this day I still don't know.

Windows 8 is a fantastic improvement to Windows 7. Not that I've taken measurements, but it feels much faster. The built-in tools like task manager and even the copying utility are much more informative and useful now. I was much more impressed with it than I thought I would be, and now it's running on two of my family's laptops and our desktop.

Are you saying a desktop user wouldn't want to use windows 8 because of the Metro UI? There's only really one place where I ever see Metro on Windows 8, and that's in the start screen (which replaced the start menu), which is easily navigable using just a keyboard. In fact, I prefer the start screen to the start menu in Windows 7, Vista etc. because it's just a lot faster.

Don't forget the (ugh) Charms bar, and also default apps for any file types for which you haven't changed the associated program yet. Couldn't say whether the start screen is faster than the start menu, for me search results always come up instantaneously, and it's hard to get a lag time below zero. But my computer was reasonably powerful; maybe it's a different story on lower-end hardware.

Anyway, I've upgraded one computer and this was a good reminder to go out and buy a copy so I can upgrade a second computer. I'm personally happy with Windows 8 in that for me the upsides outweigh the downsides. . . but for the sake of fairness I feel obligated to disclaim that I'm both more comfortable with adjusting my habits and more able to adjust the OS's behavior than many people out there.

Long story short, Windows 8 is both a impressive technical step forward and (for desktops) a stunning UI step backward. Which of those matters more is a choice for the individual.

Try Stardock's Start8 utility and you'll see just how useless the Start screen is on a desktop. Start8 is just like a curated Start screen Start menu hybrid. It's a far better implementation than Microsoft's.

Sorry, but I still think Microsoft screwed up by putting a tablet interface on a desktop OS. If they just had spent a little more time on how exactly they planned to get Metro on the desktop, things could have really been great.

This is what choice is about. Like the start screen? No problem. Don't like the start screen? Use one of the many start menu replacements.

Well, 8 seems better at managing memory and processor time... completely ignoring the awful Metro UI and the weird driver incompatibilities, that's about the only good change...

In addition to the (relatively freakish) second UI, there are a bunch of minor-but-welcome enhancements that I keep stumbling across. For instance, I right clicked an .iso, and the default OS can finally mount it. Double click a PDF file -- wow! I can see the contents without installing anything.

Several little things like this, that have previously made using Windows so much more painful than OS X, are addressed in Windows 8. I haven't really seen any major improvements over Windows 7, but minor improvements still can make life nicer.

EDIT: Oh yeah, the desktop pictures! For so many years MS exhibited horrible taste, by default slopping a huge, ugly Windows ad all over the user's desktop (Win 7). In XP, they had that crappy picture of a field near the Microsoft campus that some random employee shot. In Windows 8, I get a steady rotation of beautiful, professionally done photographs that rotate periodically, and really blow away the (previously bar-setting) default desktop pics that Apple ships. Not that desktop pics are a huge deal, but again it is one less thing I have to change about the default installation (can't stand looking at the ugly Windows ad from Win 7).

EDIT: oops, that wasn't actually an edit...

Crappy or not, this is surely one of the world most known photographs ever taken.

If only there was a Windows 7 Plus version or something, with all these minor improvements and no metro.

Someone really needs to hit their unit sales target before January ends... ;-)

Now, seriously, this has been known since before the launch.

A word of warning to those upgrading. If you upgrade from a 32-bit version of Windows you are forced to upgrade to 32-bit Windows 8 with no access to the 64-bit edition.

Annoyingly, some manufacturers (in my case Dell) shipped 32-bit versions of Vista and Windows 7 on 64-bit processors, presumably to save costs.

You can't do an in-place upgrade from 32 to 64 bit, but you can do a clean install.

The older machines that had 32 bit Windows on 64 bit hardware were usually done that way for software compatibility back when a lot of devices didn't have good 64 bit support. Also out of conservatism in corporate sales.

It was a clean install. If you use the upgrade tool to upgrade a 32-bit version of Vista or Win7, the version of Windows 8 that is downloaded (and which you can burn to DVD) has no 64-bit support.

How much is the "standard" edition? Can't find it in the website, always redirected to buy Pro.

That should increase sales.

By the way, if your BIOS doesn't support "Secure Boot", forget it.

Not true. Windows 8 runs regardless of whether Secure Boot is supported.

So HN is taking ads now?

nope, i am going to buy a copy before the price goes up and i thought others here might too. I assume MS would keep the price low for Win 8, but apparently not.

Upgrade business isn't really a big source of funds compared with pre-installs. This time Microsoft offered a cut-rate deal that it said (last October) would last until January 31.

I suspect that PC makers like Microsoft having a high retail price for Windows. It makes cheap laptops look better value.

The link you submitted goes straight to the Microsoft sales page. No news, no discussion. Just pure advertising.

If you are upgrading to Windows 8 then good for you. But the link you posted is just an advert.

If Raspberry Pi was increasing its price on a certain day then I don't think people would complain.

At least it's honest. Half the blog posts are just SEO for people in tech's businesses.

Microsoft has been all about the cash for quite sometime now, after the scam they ran with vista/langehorn (or was it longhorn), I'll go linux before I'd spend another cent on one of their o.s.

Well, of course they want money. They're a business, and last time I checked, businesses, uh, made money. I believe it's part of their job description.

And Vista/Longhorn wasn't a "scam" like you say. It was a crappy OS, but it certainly wasn't a scam -- scam = fraud. Fraud = litigation. Nobody sued Microsoft over Vista. Sure, it was a battery and resource hogging, slow, buggy, unintuitive, annoying, unstable operating system, but to say it was a scam is going a bit too far.

And there's a reason why many people still run Windows. I'm running Xubuntu 12.10 on my box right now, and it's the best OS I've used so far -- except for the software library. GNU/Linux has a very limited software library, whereas Windows has the largest. And before you shout "WINE!", many applications do not run properly on Wine, and many recent apps aren't even supported, i.e. Adobe Creative Suite 6.

GNU/Linux still has a long way to go in terms of software, so it cannot be considered a viable replacement for Windows. Until somebody develops a native, modern, full-featured office suite and Adobe ports CS to GNU/Linux, many pro and business users are left with two options: to buy an expensive OS X machine, or to buy an expensive OS upgrade for their PC. Either way, the customer loses.

I still dual boot 7 for this very reason, even though it's not even close to Xubuntu in terms of stability. And it's not that 7 is a bad operating system, it's just that Xubuntu is so good it makes 7 look lopsided in comparison. Don't get me wrong -- Windows 7 is a very good OS, apart from the security problems, which aren't even that bad compared to previous versions of Windows. Don't run as root and you'll be O.K.

Microsoft has gotten a lot of flak lately, some of it deserved, some of it not-so-well-deserved. But they're a company. Companies make mistakes, and I don't think it's fair to label them as scammers just because they rushed an OS to market.

It took them 6 years to release it. "Rush" may not be the proper term.

Are there really still notable security problems?

Yes, there are. The main problem, and by far the biggest flaw is that during setup, Windows assigns you to the root account by default. This is a gigantic security hole that has not been fixed in over 17 years. The primary reason that GNU/Linux, BSD, and UNIX systems are secure is that they do not assign the default user root. It's very dangerous. Ask anyone who has fallen for the "sudo rm -rf /" trick how they felt about the power of root access.

What makes matters worse is that there really is no equivalent of sudo in Windows, and the CLI utilities are very limited in nature. If one wants to install new software, there's no prompt to authenticate with your password -- if you are an admin, the system only presents you with a yes/no dialog box. The only way to secure a Windows environment and make it somewhat like a *nix system is by setting the hidden Administrator account password, and using a standard user account for daily tasks. If you need to install new software, you can authenticate with the admin password.

It's not a perfect solution, but unless Microsoft realizes how easy it is for malware to propagate in NT, this is the only option.

Couldn't this be chalked up to usability for 99% of users that use Windows?

What does that even mean? They're a corporation of course they're about making profit.

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