What is the future of Microsoft?

Today I tried to upgrade the SD card on my 3DS to a 64GB card. Seemed like it should be an easy task, but when I tried to use the new card my 3DS didn t recognize it.

The reason was that the card was formatted with EXFAT, a propriety file system covered by MS patents. Use of this system requires you to pay a licensing fee to Microsoft, and although it offers some advantages, such as not having a 4GB file size limit, many devices don t see any advantage. FAT32 can be implemented freely, allowing it to be included in open source distros with licensing restrictions, and free (as in beer) software.

I then attempted to format the SD card as FAT32, but found that it required command line in the post-XP world. One of the biggest reasons that I use windows over Linux, is that I don t really like command line, but whatever, I know how to use it. Only problem is, windows can t format FAT32 on a volume over 32G. I can install some third party software, but at this point I am rather annoyed.

There are a number or alternatives to EXFAT, but because windows doesn ’t work with them most removable drives use some type of FAT. A flash drive doesn ’t do much good if it only works on a few operating systems. The policy of blocking users in worked well for MS when it was basically the only choice, but at this point only a small number of devices run windows. Just about everything has a microprocessor in it these days, and it is absurd to think that you need to pay Microsoft to use your coffee pot so that it can interact with their file system. What this means is that consumers are going to start wondering why windows doesn ’t work with their devices rather than why their devices don ’t work with windows.

There is no doubt that the alternative computer operating systems have issues, but for most users, we may have reached the point where windows is harder to use. Operating systems that turn out to be a complete failure are nothing new to Microsoft, but the choice to switch to something else is. Instead of focusing on improving the core aspects of the OS, we have seen a lot of new features no one seems to really want. MS has to basically force businesses to upgrade because they have forgotten what businesses want. And to be honest, who even uses explorer for the core features anymore? I don t know how windows file transfer can suck so much, and samba is such a mess I just use FTP on my home network. I ll grant they have fixed a lot of issues with the core, stability went up by a lot in windows 7, but there is still quite a bit that is derpy. Not to mention the OS footprint is tens of GB, what the hell? Almost all of the bundled software is crap as well. IE is just used to DL firefox or chrome. WMP is replaced with VLC, if it even still exists when 10 comes out. The included zip capability is a sick joke, heck 7zip hasn t changed in years but still outperforms by an order of magnitude.

I ll grant you that it isn t an easy task, and I am not even sure where the OS ends and the programs it is supposed to handle begin anymore, but no one cares why something doesn t work how they want it. They only care that it doesn t. If the consumer finds that it is easier to use their phone than their PC, they aren t going to use their PC.

Microsoft isn t going to just implode overnight, it is a big company, and all the other OSs have a lot to sort out as well, but it has a lot of momentum, and it isn t going to change overnight either. The world is a lot bigger than it was 30 years ago, and consumers are a lot more demanding. I m just not sure how long it can continue to act like it still has a monopoly.

Why did you use Windows over Linux, and how many of those reasons are just as valid now as when you made that decision? How long before none of them are? When you learned about windows 10, were you excited about what new opportunities it might provide your business, or did you double check when support for windows 7 ends

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