"bug for bug compatibility" is why Windows sucks
Posted Mar 13, 2009 16:50 UTC (Fri) by JoeBuck
In reply to: Ts'o: Delayed allocation and the zero-length file problem
Parent article: Ts'o: Delayed allocation and the zero-length file problem
The OS can provide bug-for-bug compatibility with itself. To do so is clearly possible given the evidence that Windows does it.
Microsoft has managed to hire some of the most brilliant developers on the planet. But they have a heavy burden: every mistake they ever made in the last 20 years, every misdesigned API, every unspecified behavior, has come to be relied on by some significant application developer, so they have to keep this mountain of crap duct-taped together and running. Some of the worst offenders have been Microsoft's own application developers, relying on undocumented behavior that they can find out by reading the source code as a competitive edge.
The wisest thing the Linux developers have done is that they decided they're willing to regularly break kernel APIs, other than system calls. It's the main reason that Linux has been able to catch up so rapidly.
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