Well, kudos to Microsoft for their Bizspark program. It is intended to help small business by providing free Microsoft products. It’s a good way to try and get developers to start using their products. Thanks to that, I now have access to Windows and Visual Studio for free. Our intentions are still to use all open source tools by the end of our first year but for now we are forced to work in the a-bit-too-feature-rich-and-slow Visual Studio.
I am not sure that anyone can answer the question “why is Windows so expensive”. After all, most people get Windows when buying a new computer where Microsoft has a strong hold on the market.
First, how expensive is Windows exactly? Currently, I am looking at the US prices where Windows 7 Professional costs $200 for an upgrade and $300 for a full version. To compare, I have downloaded Ubuntu Linux three times within the last year for $0 but have donated $10 every time, just to make myself feel a little less guilty.
I understand that nothing comes for free and there are obviously many bright people at Microsoft that have high salaries. While being a student, one also enjoys the benefits of downloading tons of Microsoft software for free. But now, while starting my own business, $300 for just one Windows license is really a lot of money. And that is only the operating system. I won’t even get started on products like Visual Studio, SQL Server and so on.
There are two solutions:
- Use open source. Yes, I would like to do that, especially because there are excellent alternatives to proprietary Microsoft software. The problem is that Visual Studio is needed in certain situations.
- Swallow the bitterness and pay.
I would like to see Microsoft doing different pricing schemes on their software in the future. Until then, I will just have to pay.
Edit: The third option is to enroll in Bizspark which we did. See the next blog post
A couple of years ago, my friend Lars and I decided to start blogging together through a blog I had named “Tankestrøm”. I have always liked the name very much but the site kind of died after only a few posts.
Now, this site has appeared with an English translation of the name “Thought Flow” and I will begin writing stuff shortly since my life is taking a different turn at the moment. So far, I haven’t got much to write.
Hmm, I wonder when the search engines will start discovering this site…