Thursday, December 18, 2008

Experience what MS is missing on 64-bit

For a better 64-bit experience, yesterday I installed Internet Explorer 8 Beta x64 version on a pure 64-bit VM, a Hyper-V virtual machine running Windows 2003 R2 Standard x64 (guest) on Windows Server 2008 x64 Enterprise (host). Using this IE8, I visited ISA 2006 website to see if there was any 64-bit update or upgrade for this 32-bit only firewall product introduced in 2006. After that, the story began.

As shown above (of course, not including the lines and words I added in red), at the Home of ISA Server website, there was a big image prompting you to install Silverlight 2.0 in turn to "experience what you're missing on this site". Sure, I loved to do that. I clicked the image to install Silverlight 2.0.

Then the following screen appeared.

That's why I modified the title image above, because what I experienced was what Microsoft was missing on 64-bit.

As you know, Silverlight can be installed from Microsoft Update. So, with the same IE8 window, I chose menu Tools | Windows Update to try another way to install the Microsoft's Flash-Killer.

Wow, still not compatible! This time, it was Windows Update. I was asked to open a 32-bit IE8 window. An unknown error followed, as shown below.

At that moment, Windows Update was prompting me for an automatic update: a 64-bit update to set the kill bits for a few third-party software.

Actually, this kind of task (to set ActiveX Killbits in registry) can be done by any code (32-bit binary code, or even a plain script), but Microsoft officially released a 64-bit patch to do that..., though the patch loader (the ActiveX control of Microsoft Update) is still only available in 32-bit...

For Microsoft, a pure 64-bit world still has a long way to go.

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