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Why Is There Only 1 OS Maker When There Are Tons of PC Makers?

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    Why is there only 1 windows os when there are tons of hardware makers: Dell, HP, Acer, HTC, Samsung.

    Why can't there be only 1 excellent pc maker when there are tons of different os to choose from?
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    Microsoft cornered the market when IBM shipped their corporate PC's with the MS operating system.
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    Compatability, software either has to be made to run on both, in which it will probably lead to legal issues with 2 companies using the same way to run/store a program etc, or made once for each OS which would cost the developers more money, It's just Windows and not Mac or another Unix based system because they grabbed the market first.

    And an operating system is different to a piece of hardware, you can't compare the 2.
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    because I kissed a girl and I liked it.
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    Does it mean that from now on it is impossible for a new os to enter and fight with microsoft?
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    Its much more profitable to sell a CD for $200-300 then make a PC.
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    AbuAK I mean why is there only 1 os maker instead of 500 os makers in the market?
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    (Original post by JamesSmith100)
    AbuAK I mean why is there only 1 os maker instead of 500 os makers in the market?
    Because when you design software you need to design it to an OS so having 500 OS means 500 version of each program, which makes development a huge pain. Also for every OS you need to relearn how to use it, people struggle enough with just Windows, OSx and Linux distros never mind another 497 OS.
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    (Original post by CJ99)
    Because when you design software you need to design it to an OS so having 500 OS means 500 version of each program, which makes development a huge pain. Also for every OS you need to relearn how to use it, people struggle enough with just Windows, OSx and Linux distros never mind another 497 OS.
    What he said. ^ I still don't know what I'm doing with a Mac yet, and don't even get me started on Linux.
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    (Original post by CJ99)
    Because when you design software you need to design it to an OS so having 500 OS means 500 version of each program, which makes development a huge pain. Also for every OS you need to relearn how to use it, people struggle enough with just Windows, OSx and Linux distros never mind another 497 OS.
    This

    (Original post by Munchies-YumYum)
    because I kissed a girl and I liked it.
    And this
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    (Original post by JamesSmith100)
    Does it mean that from now on it is impossible for a new os to enter and fight with microsoft?
    I'd like to see someone try it.

    Microsoft have near as dammit monopolised the market. Unfortunately, the fines they are paying to do so do not come close to the profit they're making by doing it, so they just continue.
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    (Original post by JamesSmith100)
    Why is there only 1 windows os when there are tons of hardware makers: Dell, HP, Acer, HTC, Samsung.

    Why can't there be only 1 excellent pc maker when there are tons of different os to choose from?
    One of the purposes of an operating system is to abstract away differences in hardware so that users, and to some extent developers, have a consistent experience and don't have to worry too much about what is going on under the bonnet.

    Doing it the other way around - having multiple operating systems to give users different experiences on the same hardware, would be counter-productive.

    (The slight exception to this of course is Linux, but that isn't mainstream for PCs)

    A good example is the Android OS which runs on many different phones.
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    The guy with an alternative os that actually existed went to fly his plane instead of talk to ibm about a pc os leaving the field open for gates to get with his pitch for vaporware... First mover advantage, clever marketing and dirty tricks. Ms finished off os2 which was technically superior to what they were shipping at the time.
    Imo an even more interesting problem is how ms was able to take the application market away from established companies like borland, wordperfect and lotus.
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    (Original post by Mbob)
    One of the purposes of an operating system is to abstract away differences in hardware so that users, and to some extent developers, have a consistent experience and don't have to worry too much about what is going on under the bonnet.
    This.

    Also, the OS is really just a piece of intellectual property (IP), there isn't really a significant manufacturing process in the way there is with PCs. I expect you'd find Microsoft use several companies to print the actual discs (or did use, when it was primarily distributed by disc) and also that there's a lot of IP in common (in the processors, RAM, hard disks etc) between the components that the various PC manufacturers use.
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    There are probably more OSes out there than there are manufacturers...

    DOS, Windows 3.x, 95, 98, Me, XP, Vista, 7, 8, NT, 2000, CE, Server 2003, Server 2008... All very different OSes (though you could clump 95/98/Me and NT/2000 if you really wanted to).

    Mac OSX, OS9 and previous. The former being linux code, the latter being Apple's own code.

    The literally thousands of *nix variations, from Damn Small Linux up to Fedora, FreeBSD, Debian... with utility *nix distributions such as GParted...

    Finally...there aren't that many PC maufacturers left these days either, not compared to say the mid 90s - anyone else remember Apricot, Mesh, Gateway? I'd argue there are probably a lot more OSes than manufacturers now. If you're talking OSes that will run on a PC in a virtualised sense too... well...
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    (Original post by mikeyd85)
    There are probably more OSes out there than there are manufacturers...

    DOS, Windows 3.x, 95, 98, Me, XP, Vista, 7, 8, NT, 2000, CE, Server 2003, Server 2008... All very different OSes (though you could clump 95/98/Me and NT/2000 if you really wanted to).

    Mac OSX, OS9 and previous. The former being linux code, the latter being Apple's own code.

    The literally thousands of *nix variations, from Damn Small Linux up to Fedora, FreeBSD, Debian... with utility *nix distributions such as GParted...

    Finally...there aren't that many PC maufacturers left these days either, not compared to say the mid 90s - anyone else remember Apricot, Mesh, Gateway? I'd argue there are probably a lot more OSes than manufacturers now. If you're talking OSes that will run on a PC in a virtualised sense too... well...
    'OS makers', not OS 'versions'.

    And yes, there are lots of people who dabble with Linux distributions, but nobody actually uses most of them. There is maybe 7 or 8 distributions which get serious use, and maybe another 20 which do serve a purpose somewhere?

    And OP, because it is very easy to slap some chips in a pretty box and sell it. It is extremely hard to make a decent OS when the current ones have been decades in production with huge resources.
    Even if you could then manage to make a great OS, it is another matter getting people to actually use it, and programmers to accommodate it.

    No system will last forever, and Windows will inevitably die out, but it will be a long drawn out process.
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    (Original post by mikeyd85)
    - anyone else remember Apricot, Mesh, Gateway?
    Mesh still going "strong!!" http://www.meshcomputers.com/

    Gateway too ... http://us.gateway.com/gw/en/US/content/group/desktops

    Apricot still exists, though not on the desktop front ... http://apricotcomputers.com/
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    The purpose of an operating system: to provide a user interface between hardware and software.

    If there were as many platforms as there are OEMs it would be very complicated and expensive to produce hardware and software that works efficiently on all of them.

    Software companies even struggle to cater for both Windows and OSX users, it's only the developers with big R&D budgets like Adobe that can churn out new software for both.
    Competition is good, and I wouldn't want to see Microsoft or Apple kill off one or the other, and they likely wont... but 2/3 operating systems are enough!
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    (Original post by H.C. Chinaski)
    Mesh still going "strong!!" http://www.meshcomputers.com/

    Gateway too ... http://us.gateway.com/gw/en/US/content/group/desktops

    Apricot still exists, though not on the desktop front ... http://apricotcomputers.com/


    I haven't seen a PC by any of them in years! Memories! :moon:
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    (Original post by JamesSmith100)
    Why is there only 1 windows os when there are tons of hardware makers: Dell, HP, Acer, HTC, Samsung.

    Why can't there be only 1 excellent pc maker when there are tons of different os to choose from?
    There's only one "Windows OS" because windows is the brand name for a set of OSes from Microsoft.

    There are several Operating systems that you can run on PC hardware.
    • Windows (in it's various forms)
    • Linux (again in multiple forms)
    • Solaris
    • MacOS
    • Beos
    • DOS

    (and many smaller ones I've missed)

    Several of the above have variations - Windows can be broken down to the win3/win9x versions, the NT variants (NT4, 2000, XP, Vista, 7) and the server variants (NT4 server, 2000 Server, 2003, 2008).

    It does take a lot of work to start an OS. Linux has been around for around 20 years but only recently has become more of a contender. You also need software places to support the various OSes. Things like Firefox will work on a lot of OSes because the people that write it have put the effort in to make it work. Microsoft Office only really supports Windows with some support for MacOS (but obviously Microsoft want you to run their software on their operating system rather than a competitors).

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