RE: Companies using DOS or Windows 3.1

Subject: RE: Companies using DOS or Windows 3.1
From: Geoff Purchase <Geoff -dot- Purchase -at- ReTechGlobal -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 28 Mar 2002 14:11:52 +1000

|Recently, I started working with a new client. I won't name names, but
|the company is fairly large in its field, and operates
|To my surprise, the software that it distributes to customers is a
|text-based DOS program of a sort I haven't seen since about 1988.
| Getting the software to work the way everybody would like
|requires some
|elaborate work arounds, yet the company has no immediate plans
|to upgrade.
|Possibly, of course, there's no market need to upgrade. Still,
|over the
|last few days, I've been wondering how many large operations
|are running
|on legacy operating systems like DOS or Windows 3.1, or on pre-Pentium
|machines. For example, I remember hearing a few years ago of
|one of the
|world's largest hotel chains running on 286s, and I know for a
|fact that
|Elections Canada used old 286s in the last election but one, carefully
|saved to keep costs down.
|Anyone else have any examples?

On of me previous employers only upgraded their entire network from Windows
3.1 when MS refused to help them with support. 80,000 employees. The same
company only upgraded from Word 2.0c for the same reason. 80,000 people to
upgrade for PC+OS+Office+utils(zip etc) is one huge bucket of money. This
is less than five years ago. They pretty much went straight to

Another employer has only recently upgraded one of their products from DOS
to windows. So recently that the clients who had not taken the latest
upgrade (December) are still running the DOS version.

When I joined my current employer I needed a PC (obviously). They had run
out of old systems and had to buy me one that really was new. I'm running a
1GHz Celeron while the sysadmin is running a 486 and a 386. Most people here
are running Celeron 333MHz machines.

Just because technology is available does not mean it must be used. Why
spend $AU2500 per person for a new system that will only give a 0.05%
productivity improvement per person. That does not make economic sense.
Would it be nice to have constant upgrades and run on the bleeding edge?
Yes, I'd love to - but if I was the one who had to pay the bills it wouldn't
be happening. And at home where I do pay the bills it doesn't happen


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