Vista's big problem: 92 percent of developers ignoring it

And to think Microsoft used to be popular with the developer crowd...

Not anymore. A recent report from Evans Data shows fewer than one in 10 software developers writing applications for Windows Vista this year. Eight percent. This is perhaps made even worse by the corresponding data that shows 49 percent of developers writing applications for Windows XP.

Such appreciation for history is not likely to warm the cockles of Microsoft's heart, especially when Linux is getting lots of love from developers (13 percent writing apps for it this year and 15.5 percent in 2009). The Mac? I don't have any equivalent data via Evans Data. But the Mac OS has rocketed by 380 percent as a targeted development platform, Evans Data told Computerworld.

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The reason that developers are not developing for Vista is that most corporations have not implemented the the OS yet. As a developer I have no choice but to develop on XP. I work for an extremely huge corp and have no access to Vista.

This article is so poorly written, and the stats are obviously wrong.. lol.. geez

Ya i agree with some.. wtf is up with cNet?? they used to be good! lol

Vista is not a failure.. it just wasn't marketed enough.

I, being a software and web developer, have actually been enjoying Vista... sure there's minor bugs here and there.. but nothing that prevents me from making good apps to work.

If you're gonna be a developer.. ur gonna have to learn to make things compatible with all OS's your target audience is using.

rofl vi$ta is such a failure that even developers hate it, and you fanboys never run out of excuses even when the writing is on the wall.

I'm a developer, and I don't hate Vista. I've had to use it since the betas, and it was dog-slow and annoying, but after all the patches and SP1, it runs pretty smoothly on my machines, and my subconscious habits have adapted to UAC. If you don't want to like it, then you're not going to like it, and it's probably not worth the money unless you're curious to see what's in it.

The Evans Data press release is really vague. It's doesn't say what they consider to be a "Vista" application, though with 8% I'd have to believe it's software that runs on .NET 3.0 (WPF/WCF). If i were to take a stab, I would guess the real reasons are (but not limited to):

- XP has been around a long time; long enough that most desktop applications have been conceived and developed. There's not a slew of new software that needs to be written, and existing applications aren't going to be rewritten to use newer technologies unless there's a compelling reason.
- It costs a lot of money to retrain developers.
- XP users could potentially have to download a 200MB runtime. This could complicate things depending on the target audience and deployment method.

There are so many great time-saving, headache-reducing improvements in the newer framework versions, that I would place "developer hate" as one of the last reasons for the low adoption percentage.

Strange how he says that Microsoft isn't popular with developers anymore, yet over 50% are targetting some version of Windows, while only 13% are targetting Linux, and apparently Apple is too small to give a number - now which is the unpopular one?

I guess that more than 90% of those developing for XP would also test and verify that their programs run fine on Windows Vista...

There's not much that needs to be trargeted for Vista-only. Even WPF is fully supported on XP- just not completely hardware accelerated. This is some goofy stuff that CNet's twisted for sensationalism.

Developing for Vista or XP ? Are they nuts? Who does that nowadays?
Every self respected Windows platform programmer is programming to the .NET platform. Especially version 2.0 or higher. Because doing so, gives you the security features you need, without worrying if a machine is patched or not. Also gives you the flexibility to write once and target any platform that supports .NET (including PDAs, and some Linux distros, using mono).
Siverlight 2 for example has a subset of the .NET 2.0 framework built-in, so that makes it available to most OS out there.

The point I want to make is that programmers write to a specific framework nowadays, not a platform. So that survey is horsesh...t. CNET is just looking for some more Vista flamers. It is very sad to see a news organization being so biased and at the same time sees Google as a godsend, no matter how much they trample on your freedom of privacy (everything you do, using their wares, they know about). Vista is the next wave of OS, so they might as well pull their head out of their asses and start reporting issues that matters to the community.

Yeah and how many devs on the Apple side are developing exclusively for Lepoard? seriously... you don't develop for a specific version of an OS... you program for the OS as a whole... now when you need specific version features THEN you program for a specific OS version... but stuff like that is rare..

I doubt it .. I really REALLY doubt it.

Over 95% of all A+ software works absolutely beautifull on Vista.
Ranting Vista isn't cool anymore people, move along..

Developing for Vista only would be a foolhardy choice. Develop for Windows? Yes; Develop for the latest version of Windows when adoption rates are so low? No. Anyone that develops specifically for Vista are instantly cutting their potential userbase by a massive degree. Many developers don't even program for XP specifically, and nor should they. Developing for the widest range of systems reduces the amount of complaints, and increases your userbase, which is Win-Win, the only downside being it's more of an arse to maintain.

indeed, for example :how many games runs only on directx10? (less that 5), how many games runs on dx10 and dx9? (less that 10) and how many games runs on dx9? a lot (even recent games).

it's a fact that developers don't care about vista, many applications (for example) ask for disable UAC prior to install it, other simply are unable to run correctly on vista. If an application runs on Vista usually is not because developers did spend time on vista but most a causality (or because vista is in some extend compatible with xp).

(Magallanes said @ #10.1)
it's a fact that developers don't care about vista, many applications (for example) ask for disable UAC prior to install it,

Any developer who codes something that can't run as a Limited User without a very good reason should not be allowed within 50 feet of a compiler. Ever.

No, no. I guess you didn't see the commercial. The saying is:

90% of all statistics can be made to say anything, 50% of the times.


So only 8% of Windows programmers write apps that work only on the lates clien OS from MS? Isn't it good?

I'd laught at all those the dumb MS bashers... if they weren't eating peoples' brains right before my eyes!

what? this doesn't make any sense right?

how can only half of developers be making apps for windows xp? what are the other half doing?

and surely if you're writing an app for xp you are also wrting it for vista and vice versa in most cases. i'm really not getting their data.

garbage, developers that target the windows platform write programs for windows (not a specific version), the fact that most of them don't use vista only api functions yet is common sense. Heck most of the programs probably don't even use a lot of windows xp api. That's why most programs written this year still work in windows 2k

I saw the title and immediately thought "wonder who pulled this number out of their ass". Then, I realized it was a CNet article. Go figure. Don't need to read this one to know it's garbage.

It is garbage. Vista can run applications written for XP (with the exception of those small number of apps that require kernel drivers to be loaded) yet XP cannot run applications written specifically for Vista's new features. How many developers do they expect to be working on apps that require Vista and will not run on XP? The title should have said 57% of developers written Vista compatible apps, but then again that wouldn’t make for a good headline.

So developers are supposed to ignore the majority of the market? Developers won't focus on Vista-only applications until XP is rarely used. Most software purchases are made by large companies and long-term PC users that pay for specialized software libraries (i.e. not a bunch of freeware tools) and support... Not by bleeding edge hobbyists that change their kit every 6 months and already have their own set of preferred software (and in fact change OS more often than the software they use), and are more interested in games.

For now they can focus on 100% of the market by targetting XP, and the only people who complain will be people on the bleeding edge, not sys admins or grandma or mom & dad who just want to use a computer. When Vista has the majority of the market and people who use XP are no longer buying software, then it will be a lot more attractive to focus on it.

If 1/10 developers are working on Vista, then it's just enough for right now. And if you think about it, Vista software is 90% the same as XP, there are just a few things that require special attention and that's what the 10% are focusing on for now. Maybe in a little while when that changes, people will start designing for the ground-up with Vista in mind (whatever that changes).

"Just because it is saying something you don't like ? Typical."

Umm no. c|net has a horribly ignorant anti-Microsoft bias that makes their writers look like poorly trained monkeys, that's why it's garbage.

(xiphi said @ #1)
I saw the title and immediately thought "wonder who pulled this number out of their ass". Then, I realized it was a CNet article. Go figure. Don't need to read this one to know it's garbage.

It makes sense to me, when I tested server 08: blackice wasn't (and still isn't) supported so neither is it on pista, and thats an IBM program!

(n_K said @ #1.5)

It makes sense to me, when I tested server 08: blackice wasn't (and still isn't) supported so neither is it on pista, and thats an IBM program!

Uh. BlackICE is a dead program. It hasn't been updated in a while, and likely never will be again. Why would a complex firewall designed for an old network stack work on a new OS with a brand new network stack?