Microsoft has banned netbook manufacturers from making hybrid storage netbooks: those with both SSD and hard drives when using Windows XP Home, bit-tech
It seems Redmond gets in quite a fluff with regards to the new market of mini-portables and this arbitrary licensing limitation is in addition to the "maximum of 1GB of memory
" already enforced, if companies want to buy Windows XP Home to stick on their cheap 10"ers.
Unfortunately for MSI, it's Wind U115 netbook was the only one affected as it was already in the market before Redmond made the declaration, and MSI has until the end of June to remove the ultra-long battery life products from the shelves.
Although MSI are committed to play nice with Microsoft and are agreeing to the terms laid out, personally we hope someone throws the anti-competitive book at them (again) because the Wind U115 is a nice bit of kit.
Hybrid storage works in the Wind by installing the OS onto the SSD portion of the U115, then offering 160GB of standard 2.5" hard drive as additional mass storage which can be turned on and off on a whim to save power: it's just like having a big-ass USB key, but built in. And faster.
It's a shame the Linux netbook movement didn't take off, which is thanks Microsoft's compatibility weight too great and most netbook users buying and requesting a Microsoft OS. With Vista's fat belly too much for the lightweight Atom, and Windows 7 far off in October still, Microsoft doesn't want to hurt its Vista business with hacked in hybrid storage solutions.
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