Feeds

Retiring old Microsoft OSes – how it works

OEM licence Ts & Cs save crazy customers from selves, apparently...

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The processes whereby Microsoft squeezes a product out of the system and 'encourages' customers to migrate to the shiny new stuff are many, varied, and fairly well-known. But it's still worth documenting the occasional eye-witness account of how it works in practice. This week, when Microsoft has kindly extended the operational life of NT 4.0 Server a tad, a reader explains how being able to support it if you've already got it is an entirely separate matter from bloody-mindedly trying to install more of it.

Our informant works in an NT 4.0 shop which seems determined to persist with the heresy. They recently bought new Dell PowerEdge 1655MC blade servers with the intention of swapping them out with some of the old servers, while sticking with NT 4.0.

"I booted the server with the Dell Server Assistant CD to setup the first new server. Well, to my utter dismay, I see that the only supported OSes they are now supporting is Microsoft Windows 2000 and Red Hat Linux 7.3. Where did the NT drivers go?"

Naughty Dell? Well, no, not entirely. A Dell server sales rep says that Microsoft won't let Dell preinstall NT 4.0 any longer. But obviously, this is not a problem for our customer, because he already has the media and the licences, so he can install it himself. But the drivers - where did the drivers go?

Dell, it appears, has got them but...

The sales rep says: "While we have tested NT on the box, we cannot provide drivers or support for NT due to Microsoft regulations regarding the certification of NEW hardware platforms on old operating systems."

This would seem to suggest that Dell has NT drivers that work perfectly well on its new boxes, but that its agreement with Microsoft stops it from having them certified, and shipping them. Our customer points out that the machines use fairly standard third party components, and that it therefore ought to be feasible for customers to use non-certified drivers from these manufacturers.

These, one might speculate, Dell could ship, and have catered for in its setup assistant CD. Or could it? We at The Register would not be entirely surprised if it turned out Dell's arrangements with Microsoft forbade it from doing that, as well. ®

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

More from The Register

next story
UNIX greybeards threaten Debian fork over systemd plan
'Veteran Unix Admins' fear desktop emphasis is betraying open source
Netscape Navigator - the browser that started it all - turns 20
It was 20 years ago today, Marc Andreeesen taught the band to play
Redmond top man Satya Nadella: 'Microsoft LOVES Linux'
Open-source 'love' fairly runneth over at cloud event
Chrome 38's new HTML tag support makes fatties FIT and SKINNIER
First browser to protect networks' bandwith using official spec
Admins! Never mind POODLE, there're NEW OpenSSL bugs to splat
Four new patches for open-source crypto libraries
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.