"The discontinuation of these programs "is a thinly disguised
ploy by Microsoft to boost revenue by driving clients to buy volume
licenses for the more expensive Windows 2000 Professional product
or to force customers into entering a volume agreement for their
future Windows 95 and 98 needs before the end of June 2001," said
Dan Kusnetzky, an analyst at International Data Corp."
"The strategy could well blow up in Microsoft's face and is
"fraught with peril," Kusnetzky added. It could also result in many
clients seriously considering alternative platforms like Linux and
BSD, he said. IDC, which has some 2,000 desktops running
Windows 95, is currently examining upgrading its future desktop
applications. The latest Microsoft move "may accelerate a move by
us to a platform other than Windows 2000 Professional," Kusnetzky
"Bill Stapelfeldt, director of technology at Bayshore National
Bank in La Porte, Texas, which has several hundred desktops running
Windows 95 and 98, said he was angered by the move, which now
leaves users less choice. ... "I would probably rather buy
additional Windows 98 or ME licenses at the full retail price than
be forced to buy a volume license for 2000," said Stapelfeldt.
"And, in that scenario, Linux could then also become a very
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