There is one thing that you could always rely on when it came to Microsoft. And that one thing was if you ever built a project on their platform then you knew that it was going to work for almost forever. Even though they may not support the technology that you used anymore, they were still going to make sure it worked in future versions of the operating system. This line of thinking came around because of their business customers. Their business customers needed to be assured that if they built custom applications on the Windows platform that they would only have to do it one time. It is expensive to build software projects so they wanted to make sure that they only had to do it once. So Microsoft granted them their wish and almost every version of the Windows operating system has been backwards compatible since.
Windows 8 may be the first example when it comes to a new line of thinking at Microsoft. The latest operating system might be showing that Microsoft is ready to break that line of thinking that all things must be backward compatible, at least to a certain extent. This is starting to get business owners a little bit worried. Are they going to have to reduplicate their tool set every time Microsoft releases a new operating system now or are they just going to forget about it all together and not upgrade at all?
These rumors are starting up because you hear about the new ways that you can make programs for Windows 8. The first thing that you hear about is the new sandbox model for applications sold in the app store that is going to be installed on Windows 8. These apps are going to be powerful but not as powerful as the ones we have seen in the past. The Windows team has decided that they are not going to let programs who use the Windows 8 app store have access to certain features.
Another reason why people are alarmed is because they are starting to hear stories about Windows 8 being able to run on ARM architecture. If you do not know, ARM architecture based chips are the chips that run a lot of the mobile phones that we see out today. In the past Windows has ran primarily on the x86 Intel architecture but it has in the past been able to run on others. So is this another sign that Windows 8 will be the end of backward compatibility?
The people in charge say no. They say that you will still be able to use programs from the past on Windows 8. But you will have to use the desktop version of the operating system to be able to do so. The Metro version of Windows 8 will not allow you to have that capability. The Metro version of Windows 8 requires that their programs be made in a certain way so you will have to follow that restriction when building for the Metro platform. This is not at all true with the desktop version of the operating system. You will still have the same backward compatibility that you have always had.
It seems that Microsoft is really trying to evolve Windows with this new release. They really want people to upgrade their programs but have not left them totally in the dust.