A researcher finally figures out a way to get “32-bit Windows desktop applications”(*) to run on Surface RT by defeating an artificial constraint on the device and what does Microsoft do? Well, they “praise” the researcher but want to close the hole that allows it!!!
Instead of trying to follow what Steve Jobs did right (e.g. the design ethic) which they never manage to pull off as well anyway, Microsoft imitates what Steve Jobs does wrong – the closed, walled garden mentality!
From the article: “The decision to ban traditional desktop applications was not a technical one, but a bad marketing decision,” Roker said. “Windows RT needs the Win32 ecosystem to strengthen its position as a productivity tool. There are enough ‘consumption’ tablets already.”
… and then you have 3rd party pointy-headed managers making disingenuous comments on how such an incredibly useful feature might be “undesirable”:
“While running Windows desktop apps on Surface may be an attractive idea to some, implementing Roker’s hack could have negative consequences”, according to Vizay Kotikalapudi, senior manager with Symantec’s Enterprise Mobility Group. “Once you jailbreak a device, the stability of a device is no longer guaranteed,” he told TechNewsWorld. “You can have memory leaks, applications crashing all the time and networks not working correctly.”
Coming from a company that peddles bloatware that makes PCs run slower while adding dubious value, that’s rich! Furthermore, I doubt he’s really telling the truth, because 32-bit Windows app, esp. when running on ARM, would still be sandboxed in one way or another.
(*) The original blog article can be found at: http://surfsec.wordpress.com/2013/01/06/circumventing-windows-rts-code-integrity-mechanism/comment-page-1/
I suspect the hack won’t actually let you run x86/x64 Win32 binaries on an ARM-based Windows 8 (e.g. RT). The blog article itself is silent on this, but one of the comments would seem to confirm this. On the other hand, .NET-based apps are likely to run because these are not x86/x64-based.
When Roker says: “The decision to ban traditional desktop applications was not a technical one, but a bad marketing decision. Windows RT needs the Win32 ecosystem to strengthen its position as a productivity tool. There are enough ‘consumption’ tablets already”, I believe he means that developers would still need to recompile their apps to run on ARM. But that is still a much, much, much easier and faster way to bring a HUGE number of apps over to Win RT compared to rewriting these apps for Metro.