# Windows XP (was dxt to hpgl)

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#### Michael Griffin

At 16:13 13/12/01 -0500, Donald Pittendrigh wrote:
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>Anyone who is prepared to pay $500 for XP, please contact me In my >country it is less than half this and I will pay the postage. > >I think over here about R1500 or$150 would do it.
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That's odd, because I made a quick search on the internet for South African software retailers and found that "Microsoft Windows XP Professional" (full version) was selling for R3900. I *did* find the *upgrade version* of Windows XP *Home* Edition selling for R1480. I assume this is what you were actually referring to when you mentioned R1500.

Here are some price comparisons at a conversion rate of 6.88 Rand per Canadian Dollar (from The Economist):

Windows XP Home Edition (Upgrade) -
South African price = R1480
Canadian price = $150 (Future Shop) Canadian price converted to Rand = R1032 Microsoft Windows XP Professional (full version) - South African price = R3900 Canadian price =$500 (Future Shop)
Canadian price converted to Rand = R3440

At these prices, I wouldn't suggest going into the software grey market business unless you want to import from Canada into South Africa. I suspect you have been mislead by some of the advertisements you have seen.

In making comparisons of prices of different operating systems (which is where I started), it is not realistic to look at an *upgrade* price. The upgrade price doesn't tell you how much you actually paid, since it doesn't include the original cost of the operating system you are upgrading. Buying an older version and then upgrading would in fact normally be much more expensive than the prices I have listed.

So, to go back to the original point, someone mentioned that Windows XP was selling for about the same price as DOS used to. DOS sold for a small fraction of what Windows XP costs today (I seem to recall about \$60). I think my previous point on relative costs still stands.

While we are talking about Windows XP, has anyone given any more thought as to how they intend to handle the Windows activation (WPA) issue for PC based equipment they are installing on customer premises? Apparently, there are a number of different ways this system can work, depending upon the version you get (that is WPA version - not "edition").
In addition, if you buy a computer with Windows XP installed by a computer OEM, there are different installation modes (selected by the OEM) which can affect how readily you can replace hardware components without triggering a Windows WPA shut-down. I suspect the computer OEM would pick whatever WPA mode best suits their production process for that model of computer.
Microsoft also seems to want to know what country the computer is being used in as part of the "activation" process, which seems to imply they intend to use different licencing policies in different countries. They are already doing this for example, with the newer versions of their "Office" product.
What this seems to mean is that "experience" and "testing" won't tell you anything about how big of a problem WPA is going to be in any specific situation unless you know a lot more details about how Windows was installed on the particular computer you are using.

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Michael Griffin