Importance of Windows XP support

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Evert
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Importance of Windows XP support

Post by Evert » Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:35 pm

Short version: how important is it to continue to support Windows XP?

Long version: I've been trying to figure out why a number of people have reported problems with SjaakII where the program would become unresponsive. I eventually figured out that problems occur mostly with the "release" compiles and (with some help) that problems occur from version 1.3.1 onward, which is when we transitioned the build system to MSVS 2015. All of which suggested to me that the problem is somewhere in the MSVS code-path. Martin Sedlak discovered that there is an actual bug in the CRT runtime library for MSVS 2015, which breaks for unbuffered input.

Now, this bug has been fixed, but only for targets later than Windows XP (so Windows XP and earlier remain broken). So this basically narrows the choice down to using an older compiler (that doesn't have the same bug in its CRT library), or dropping support for Windows XP in the release builds.

I don't really like the first option on principle (relying on a particular older version of a compiler is bad) and I'm in two minds about the second. On the one hand, this is a 16 year old OS that became unsupported three years ago. On the other hand, I don't like the idea of telling people they're out of luck trying to run my program. A compromise is to offer both builds, at least for the time being.

So anyway, how important is it in practice to maintain support for Windows XP?

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Steve Maughan
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by Steve Maughan » Mon Mar 27, 2017 9:43 pm

I personally don't think it's that important to support Windows XP. It's 10 year's since it was "current". I'm sure some will disagree but any serious chess / computer chess fan should have surely upgraded.

Steve
http://www.chessprogramming.net - Maverick Chess Engine

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cdani
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by cdani » Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:06 pm

I keep using visual studio 2013 for this for Andscacs. For the moment is enough as I'm not purist in any way, as for example I mix C with C++ without regrets :-)

jdart
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by jdart » Tue Mar 28, 2017 2:19 am

I use unbuffered I/O and support Windows XP, and I haven't had any problems with that combination, using Visual C++ 2015 Community Edition.

My impression is that older Windows versions are much commoner outside the US (Europe, Asia and Africa). I think most U.S. users are off XP now but may not be true elsewhere. Still, XP is pretty old now.

--Jon

Norbert Raimund Leisner
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by Norbert Raimund Leisner » Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:00 am

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/hel ... of-support

The end of support for its successor, Windows Vista, will be in two weeks.

Norbert

By the way: Which playing strength has Vista´s application "Chess Titans"?

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Greg Strong
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by Greg Strong » Tue Mar 28, 2017 3:11 am

Well, that's great news that you've found the issue :) Bad news what it turned out to be :(

How important is XP support? Not important at all. You can no longer run XP at all - at least not if you want to connect to the internet. It will get wrecked with spyware in no time flat. It's too bad, it was one of the best and most popular OSs of all time, but you just can't run it any more.

tmokonen
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by tmokonen » Tue Mar 28, 2017 4:18 am

Norbert Raimund Leisner wrote:By the way: Which playing strength has Vista´s application "Chess Titans"?
I'd say somewhere around 1200-1300 on level 10. If I, as a weak human, can beat it more often than it beats me, then it is not that strong.

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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by mar » Tue Mar 28, 2017 4:24 am

jdart wrote:I use unbuffered I/O and support Windows XP, and I haven't had any problems with that combination, using Visual C++ 2015 Community Edition.
Would you want to share some details? Like Windows SDK version you use?
For me it's broken in 2015 and still broken in 2017 with XP support (release builds - forced to target 7.0/8.1 SDK, 10.x seems fixed).

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Evert
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by Evert » Tue Mar 28, 2017 7:07 am

Greg Strong wrote:Well, that's great news that you've found the issue :) Bad news what it turned out to be :(
Well, I'd get to blame something other than myself, so there is that.
Just to be sure: could you verify that the binaries in http://www.eglebbk.dds.nl/program/downl ... RC-win.zip work for you? They work for Martin, but they're spotty for me under Wine (they sometimes stall waiting for input while thinking; just start them up and tell them "go". If they don't keep going at 100% CPU they're waiting for input; just type "quit" and they should exit cleanly).
How important is XP support? Not important at all. You can no longer run XP at all - at least not if you want to connect to the internet. It will get wrecked with spyware in no time flat. It's too bad, it was one of the best and most popular OSs of all time, but you just can't run it any more.
There is that, I suppose.

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Evert
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Re: Importance of Windows XP support

Post by Evert » Tue Mar 28, 2017 7:08 am

cdani wrote:I keep using visual studio 2013 for this for Andscacs. For the moment is enough as I'm not purist in any way, as for example I mix C with C++ without regrets :-)
You are clearly a man after my own heart. :)

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