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Reverse Compatibility Manifesto

OK, so I said the phrase "Windows XP" in a message, and suddenly NO ONE will reply? Seriously, I'll say it again, Microsoft and Sony (e.g. most of the PlayStation series) can do reverse compatibility fairly well, and Fedora is almost totally lacking in that arena. "Get with the times" doesn't always make sense. And if anybody says, "Well, if you like reverse compatibility so much, why don't you shell out for Microsoft software like 90% of the rest of the herd." Uh, no. There are both commercial and "free" software products that need that reverse compatibility.

Example: is there anybody out there doing natural science or engineering on Linux machines right now who is NOT using any commercial software whatsoever?

And just because a "free" software product hasn't been updated in a while does not mean that the software is useless.

I can't quadruple boot my machine just to run all of the software I use. It should not be necessary, especially when most of this software is designed for Red Hat/Fedora distributions, or can be installed and run using WINE.

Any thoughts?


William M. Quarles wrote:
Kevin Kofler wrote:
Upstreams still building their binaries with GCC 2.95 (or 2.96 for that matter) should really be told to get with the times. GCC is at 4.3 now, 2.95 is just a long gone memory from the distant past.

Sorry for taking so long to reply, for some reason my Gmane.org feed wasn't showing the latest replies on this thread.

OK, Windows XP still runs nearly all programs from previous versions Windows, plus it has DOS emulation so that it can run many, but not all DOS programs. What is SO WRONG with some element of reverse compatibility? I know that some of you may feel that there is a hinder to progress there, but there has to be some kind of balance between bleeding-edge and interoperability with other software.

I'm not talking about a need to build new binaries, I'm just talking about getting older software to run on a newer OS. This doesn't just include commercial software such as Maple, but also older open-source projects that haven't been updated in a while, but could still hypothetically work if the proper libraries were provided.


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