Note: I am not against MS in principle. If I could buy a full version of W98 or 2K for $39, I'd do it. But $299 is just too much for software that should be priced as a commodity.
Mr. Baggett has a strange idea of what the software costs. First of all, you can buy a whole computer with Windows XP installed for.... I just did a quick search and found on refurbdepot.com, an HP Pavilion 515X faster than my present main machine for $399. Yes, it's painful to look at, I know..... I'm trying not to think of what I spent, and I really didn't spend that much. For the time....
I looked at another company and found a computer that is about the same as the one we use (in my wife's business) to run UPS Worldship 5, and it was $79. It did not include the operating system, which was extra. How much extra? Windows 98, $49. So even if you tossed the computer, the W98 license would be $128. Quite a bit less than $299.
Okay, how much would it cost just to buy W98? First I found that I can buy Windows XP Home Edition OEM for $92.95. As an OEM product, you have to buy some hardware. The web site explained that if you buy a screw, it's enough. I know that this is the practice, I just bought Office XP 2002 Professional Special Edition (includes Front Page and Publisher, free upgrade to XP 2003 for all components) for $359. It came boxed with a Microsoft mouse. "Hardware." From this same site, I could buy an optical mouse for about $12, or I could buy any of many other useful items for only a few dollars, perhaps I need a connector of some kind....
But that was XP. I went to buycheapsoftware.com and found Windows 98 First Edition OEM for $55. The listing said "includes OEM hardware." So we are down to $55 to solve Mr. Baggett's UPS problem. I also went to the same company from which I just bought XP2002, and they also had the OEM W98 first edition for $55. That is a real price, from real companies who deliver the product....
Since he had to come up with another computer due to the memory limitations on his first one, though, the best solution might have been to buy a used or refurbished computer with W98 installed. How much work he would have saved!!!
I also found, looking around, another decent computer with Windows 2000 installed, on ebay, starting bid $50, 4 hours to go, no bids. "Installed" may or may not mean that the license is legitimately being sold, if such niceties concern you.... One might ask the seller if the manuals and CD are included. I'm tempted... but no time.
Since I was looking on ebay, were any OS licenses for sale? I thought at first there were none, but then I found one. A Dell Windows XP Professional installation disk. It is packaged with a power cord, manufacturer sealed. I think we now know what that is about. The price? There was one bid on it for $9.99. The info says "may be installed on a Dell computer only." No problem, there was a decent Dell computer for sale with no OS for $39.
So much for expensive operating systems!
(Yes, the systems are expensive, unless one finds the cracks in the market facade.)
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