To hell with XP, save DOS!

The editors of PC World have some April Fool’s fun at the expense of their InfoWorld cousins. takes you to this very elaborately constructed special site:

Save DOS: The Ultimate Antidote to Vista’s Bloat

I love the image gallery. The scary thing is, I remember this cover, because I was Managing Editor of PC World when it was published.


$149 for PC Tools Deluxe? Wow.

Don’t miss the feature comparison: DOS Trounces Vista

Even scarier, a year or so later, when I had jumped to PC Computing, we did a I (Heart) DOS bumper sticker and bound it into every copy. To the best of my knowledge, that one is not on the Internets. Yet.

11 thoughts on “To hell with XP, save DOS!

  1. Comparison chart could be alot better.

    How is notepad “overblown?

    DOS: Autoexec.bat Vista: Complicated system configuration (How does this make sense?

    Would have just been easier to compare autoexec.bat to msconfig but even that wouldn’t be accurate.

    DOS: Games launch in seconds. Vista: Games require high-end graphics card.

    Depending on the machine games may take alot longer than seconds to load in DOS. As for Vista how does this compare? Games can launch in seconds in Vista as well….

    DOS: Eye-popping ANSI,ASCII graphics. (err…CGA,MCGA,EGA,VGA,SVGA…forgot about those?) compared to Vista’s “system choking Aero graphics”. How can Aero “choke” your system? WTF does that even mean?

    I realize this is April Fool’s but come on at least put a little effort into it. Geez.

  2. DOSFreak, I hate to think about it, but I bet that of the writers and editors who worked on this package, there’s a good chance that none ever used DOS…

  3. “there’s a good chance that none ever used DOS…”

    There’s also a good chance that the first OS they “really” used was XP 😉

    The DOS 5/6Win3.0/3.1/3.11 were magic days for me not only because the mundane seemed exciting (remember DoubleSpace!) but because you could see the evolution from the command line to the Windows environment taking shape. Not that evceryone agreed … I remember at the time many saying that Windows would “never catch on” …

    Utilities were so darn cool back then too. Norton Utilities, PC Tools … really cool stuff. Part of me is sad, not only that these tools have faded into obscurity, but that we don’t need them any more. Even antivirus software was cool and exciting. The last cool utility I remember was Dr Solomon’s AV (still got a sweatshirt).

    Good times. Still, quad cores running at 3GHz, 8GB of RAM, 1TB of disk space, twin 22″ widescreen monitors … yeah, that’s pretty cool too. 🙂

  4. Actually, I was the guy who made those charts, and I cut my teeth on DOS 2.0. Sorry to anyone who didn’t feel the charts were elaborate enough. It was a last-minute addition to the story that we thought would be entertaining.

  5. Great story, however I’m not sure I disagree with the save XP movement so much now that they are going to be supporting it for these eeepc class computers for a few more years anyway. I prefer Vista and use it on all my home computers. But if people want to hand you money, why not take it?

  6. Mark, “But if people want to hand you money, why not take it?”

    Well, the short answers(s) are:

    They do take the money from corporate customers, who have downgrade rights in perpetuity through volume licenses. But support is expensive, and setting an end of life for a product is necessary. We can argue over the timing, but carried to its extreme the answer is that Microsoft should still be selling MS-DOS 1.0 and, for that matter, OS/2 1.1. Right?

  7. I can’t argue with that point Ed, I guess my point is they have committed to extending XP support anyway, but support is a lot more than issuing patches so you’re right.
    Frankly I don’t get the Vista hate from some of the pundits. I feel they’re doing consumers a disservice by encouraging them to stick with less secure , and less featured OS, that modern hardware is more than capable of running.

  8. I found this thread while searching for one of those I [heart] DOS bumper stickers that was mentioned in the notes. Not only are those my initials, I set up DOS 5 and DOS 6.2 machines that totally kicked Win 3.1 and Win 3.11 to the curb.

    And anybody who takes a comparison of DOS to Vista seriously, needs meds. It’s a joke… like comparing a horse to the new Ford Mustang.

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