Feeds

Microsoft SKUs Windows 7 clarity

Ultimate fixation

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Windows Wha?

Professional will be for people who work at home and need to connect to a secure corporate network and for small businesses that must manage an IT infrastructure. However, the company's made a fundamental assumption with the Professional edition about the sets of services those working from home or working for small businesses will want.

If such people work from home, outside the security of the corporate office, why wouldn't these customers want BitLocker to secure their machines?

That leads us to Ultimate. According to Microsoft, Windows 7 Ultimate will be for "a very small set of customers who want what everything that Windows 7 has to offer." These customers are "PC enthusiasts" who want features in the Enterprise edition such as BitLocker.

Problem is, Microsoft doesn't do "enthusiast" markets, so what's going on? It sounds more like Microsoft will try to up sell Professional users excluded from the Enterprise edition.

Then there's netbooks.

To its credit, Microsoft's rejected the idea of a separate Windows 7 SKU for netbooks. On Tuesday, Microsoft made the play that the underlying engineering enhancements in Windows 7 meant it would run more efficiently than Windows Vista on these small devices.

And it seems Microsoft believes that's all it'll really take, as it's defined the netbook category as a sub laptop with limited screen and keyboard space that lacks a CD or DVD drive.

And yet, Microsoft will deliver a version of Windows 7 for this market - it's just using a different name: the Windows 7 Starter Edition. Microsoft said the Windows 7 Starter Edition would be "for OEMs that build low-cost small notebook PCs".

Starter Edition will - for the first time - be available worldwide. Before, it could not be sold on PCs in the those "developed" markets of the US, European Union, Australia, and Japan.

And here's where it really gets complicated. Based on what we know about their features at this stage, Starter Edition and Home Edition threaten to tread on each others' toes. Furthermore, there's little to stop Starter Edition spilling out of the OEM-only channel and finding its way onto sites such as Amazon, where you can buy OEM-only versions of Windows.

And that's without the feature and functionality bleed between Home Premium and Ultimate, Professional and Ultimate. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
PEAK APPLE: iOS 8 is least popular Cupertino mobile OS in all of HUMAN HISTORY
'Nerd release' finally staggers past 50 per cent adoption
Microsoft to bake Skype into IE, without plugins
Redmond thinks the Object Real-Time Communications API for WebRTC is ready to roll
Microsoft promises Windows 10 will mean two-factor auth for all
Sneak peek at security features Redmond's baking into new OS
Mozilla: Spidermonkey ATE Apple's JavaScriptCore, THRASHED Google V8
Moz man claims the win on rivals' own benchmarks
FTDI yanks chip-bricking driver from Windows Update, vows to fight on
Next driver to battle fake chips with 'non-invasive' methods
DEATH by PowerPoint: Microsoft warns of 0-day attack hidden in slides
Might put out patch in update, might chuck it out sooner
Ubuntu 14.10 tries pulling a Steve Ballmer on cloudy offerings
Oi, Windows, centOS and openSUSE – behave, we're all friends here
Was ist das? Eine neue Suse Linux Enterprise? Ausgezeichnet!
Version 12 first major-number Suse release since 2009
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
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.
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.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.