Feeds

Microsoft dropped Vista hardware spec to raise Intel profits

'Gotta sell those chipsets'

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

You know this stuff goes on. But you're still gobsmacked when the proof turns up.

According to an email sent last February by Microsoft general manager John Kalkman, the software giant lowered Windows Vista's minimum hardware requirements to ridiculous levels only because Intel needed to sell more graphics chipsets.

The email was just one of many released in response to a federal class action suit that accuses Microsoft of misleading the world with those "Windows Vista Capable" logos it slapped on new PCs in the run-up to the operating system's debut. The logos appeared on system more than nine month before the OS was unveiled.

Judging from these emails - unsealed by the court this week and spewed to the digerati by Todd Bishop of Seattle Post-Intelligencer - the case has a pretty good chance.

"In the end, we lowered the requirement to help Intel make their quarterly earnings so they could continue to sell motherboards with the 915 graphics embedded," John Kalkman wrote to Scott Di Valerio, who oversaw Microsoft's dealings with PC partners.

Intel told The Wall Street Journal that the bit about its earning was not true, arguing that Kalkman "is not qualified in any shape or form to have knowledge about Intel's internal financial forecasts related to chipsets, motherboards or any other product".

Meanwhile, Microsoft informed the paper that it included the Intel 915 chipset in the Windows Vista Capable program "based on successful testing of beta versions of Windows Vista on the chip set and the broad availability of the chip set in the market." And it said the unsealed emails showed how its execs "were trying to make the marketing program better for Microsoft partners and consumers".

You could argue, however, that Kalkman's email is far from the best of the lot. In another message, a Microsoft board member tells Steve Ballmer he's decided against "upgrading" one of his machines to Vista. "I cannot understand with a product this long in creation why there is such a shortage of drivers," he says. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Scrapping the Human Rights Act: What about privacy and freedom of expression?
Justice minister's attack to destroy ability to challenge state
WHY did Sunday Mirror stoop to slurping selfies for smut sting?
Tabloid splashes, MP resigns - but there's a BIG copyright issue here
Google hits back at 'Dear Rupert' over search dominance claims
Choc Factory sniffs: 'We're not pirate-lovers - also, you publish The Sun'
EU to accuse Ireland of giving Apple an overly peachy tax deal – report
Probe expected to say single-digit rate was unlawful
Inequality increasing? BOLLOCKS! You heard me: 'Screw the 1%'
There's morality and then there's economics ...
Hey Brit taxpayers. You just spent £4m on Central London ‘innovation playground’
Catapult me a Mojito, I feel an Digital Innovation coming on
While you queued for an iPhone 6, Apple's Cook sold shares worth $35m
Right before the stock took a 3.8% dive amid bent and broken mobe drama
EU probes Google’s Android omerta again: Talk now, or else
Spill those Android secrets, or we’ll fine you
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.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.