Windows XP is so old…

Here’s how old Windows XP is:

When you install a fresh copy of XP, as I did today in a virtual machine, little billboards appear during different phases of the installation. One of them talks about support for “new classes of hardware” (or something like that – it blew by pretty quickly). As an example, it mentions Zip drives.

When was the last time you used a Zip drive? I think I threw away all my Zip disks in 2003.

Bonus snark from Wikipedia: “In 2006, PC World rated the Zip drive as the 15th worst technology product of all time. However, in 2007, PC World rated the Zip drive as the 23rd best technology product of all time.”

10 thoughts on “Windows XP is so old…

  1. My father still uses the Zip drive I bought for him to back up his Word documents.

    He was suspicious of it when I bought it in 2001 (already well past its prime). Only after he outgrew the 1.4 MB storage limit of floppy disks did he start to appreciate the Zip’s 250 MB capacity. We haven’t had any problems with his drive, but I’ve told him we will retire it next year. He also has a flash drive he uses as a second backup.

    PC World and other mags were usually the first ones to sing the praises of these new technologies, especially when the manufacturers bought lots of ad space.

    Magazines have gotten more skeptical, and consumer-aware, over the years, however.

  2. I haven’t used a Zip drive in years.

    My dad still uses his Zip drive for his Quicken and tax backups. It’s easy for him to use and works, and that’s all he cares about.

  3. Another chuckle from XP’s past…their firm position that USB was “oh so nowhere” and Firewire would be the protocol Microsoft would support in the future. Ha!

    Of course, we all know what showed up in later XP service packs: USB2 support!

    April 10, 2001 10:10 AM PDT
    “Windows XP won’t support USB 2.0”
    By Joe Wilcox
    Staff Writer, CNET News

  4. Actually, mgo, I remember that story. Joe was completely wrong. The first release of XP didn’t support USB 2.0 because the drivers weren’t ready. It was added in a fix pack and then in SP1.

  5. You probably know somebody who bought a ZIP drive – but do you know of someone who bought a DVD-RAM drive? These are also mentioned in the XP installer billboards.

  6. I actually secured a Zip Drive recently from an old computer I deconstructed. I have to say that I don’t expect to ever use it. The format is dead.

    Which is kind of sad considering that tape backups are somewhat cheap; they do a much better job of offline storage containers then optical disks.

  7. History is getting written by the search engines, isn’t it? It’s easy to dig up an article from seven years ago, but what’s the context? (On the other hand, at least it wasn’t a John Dvorak column. Those are a real riot.)

  8. Yeah I still have my 250 MB zip drive and one disk! I tried to sell an older computer recently on Ebay and tried to include the zip items in the package. No one bid on it! I guess people dont really want it now. But it worked out, my dads computer died and I ended up using that computer I was gonna sell. And the zip drive makes a great door stop! 🙂

  9. Steve Gibson was partly responsible for the demise of the Zip Drive with his marketing of the famous “Click of Death” and free software to detect it.

    Iomega Zip drives were all the rage for a while. They appeared internally and externally in the computers of their day. I still have lots of zip disks and a couple of the drives. I also fell for Iomega’s Jazz drive…kind of like the Zip Drive idea only with 1 GB cartridges.

    I think Jazz drives and some Zip drives were SCSI devices. The internal Zip drives were IDE, I think.

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