Vista: Sometimes I Wish I'd Never Been Born [UPDATED]
Now that the marketplace has abandoned Vista, is Microsoft making preparations to abandon it as well? Earlier today, a Microsoft executive suggested that might be the case, hinting that the company could be planning to ditch Vista soon after Windows 7 ships. “We are still not sure if [computer makers] will be able to ship Vista once Windows 7 is made available,” Richard Francis, general manager and Windows Client Business Group lead at Microsoft Asia-Pacific, told IDG, adding that support for all versions of Vista will end in April of 2012.
An interesting disclosure given that Microsoft (MSFT) hasn’t yet detailed official plans for Vista, post-Windows 7. With the poor reception the OS has received in the market and Microsoft’s efforts to redeem itself with Windows 7, it certainly wouldn’t be surprising if the company wanted to remove Vista from the shelves as soon as Windows 7 arrives. Then again, it wouldn’t be all that surprising if Microsoft left the Vista packages there for a while–tucked away behind some copies of Windows XP, of course.
UPDATE: Responding to my request for comment, Microsoft said that there is no hard and fast date end-of-sale date for Vista. The company noted, however, that OEMs will have the option to pre-install and retailers will be able to sell whatever versions of Windows they choose until that date is reached. Microsoft’s statement in full, below:
We have not made any final end of sale decisions for Windows Vista.
Microsoft Support Lifecycle policy provides a minimum of 10 years of support for Business and Developer products. Mainstream support for these business and enterprise versions of Windows Vista will be provided for five years, or for two years after the successor product is released, whichever is longer. Currently, Mainstream Support for these products is scheduled to end on April 10, 2012.
For Consumer products, including consumer versions of Windows Vista Ultimate, Home Basic and Home Premium, Microsoft will offer Mainstream Support for either a minimum of five years from the date of a product’s general availability, or for two years after the successor product is released, whichever is longer. Extended Support is not available for Consumer, Hardware, and Multimedia products. Most of these products will also receive at least eight years of online self-help support.
During Mainstream Support, customers have access to no charge and paid support, security updates and non-security hotfixes. Extended Support for business and developer products will be available until April 11, 2017. During Extended Support at a supported service pack level, customers can access paid support, security updates and online self-help. Non-security hotfixes are available to customers who enroll in the Extended Hotfix Support program within 90 days of the product entering Extended Support.