Buy Windows XP, Get Vista Free

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Steve Ballmer seems to be recognising at last the reality of Windows Vista: that few are buying it. Here's his latest wheeze to try to get the installed base up: give it away.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has a unique sales pitch for the company's Windows Vista operating system -- if you don't like it, you can turn it into Windows XP.

Referring to Microsoft licensing policies that allow customers who purchase an operating system to legally install predecessor versions on their PCs, Ballmer noted that the program allows customers who aren't satisfied with Vista to use XP.

"Customers get both," said Ballmer, during a brief interview at an event Tuesday in Washington, D.C.

The only thing Ballmer hasn't grasped is that it's Vista that is the freebie with XP, not the other way round. Either way, it's clear why Microsoft is desperate to get Windows 7 out of the door as soon as possible: to expunge the memory of the Vista fiasco. Windows Millennium, anyone?

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