updated 04:00 pm EST, Fri November 14, 2008
More Vista Capable E-mail
Additional e-mail messages have been published through court filings in the investigation of the Vista Capable logo lawsuit that suggest Intel was applying the highest levels of pressure to lower the system requirements ahead of Vista's launch. Intel chief Paul Otellini reportedly contacted Microsoft head Steve Ballmer ahead of the release to petition the inclusion of Intel's GMA 915 chipset in the logo program, increasing pressure on Microsoft to allow the chipset even though it knew the hardware's video performance would be inadequate for Windows Vista's full Aero Glass interface
The decision is said to have come with significant resistance even from the highest ranks of Microsoft. The company's then head of the Platforms and Services group Jim Allchin is said to have echoed the sentiments of engineers and is described as "apoplectic" in one message and directly stated that Microsoft was likely to end up "misleading" customers by falsely leading them to believe they would get the full Windows Vista experience with systems obtaining the logo, which were primarily sold in late 2006.
PC makers were also largely disappointed. Dell and HP warned respectively that a system with GMA 915 lacked proper software support and that the earlier requirements pushed system builders into outfitting PCs with graphics cards they didn't need.
The new messages directly condemn Microsoft for agreeing to the deceptive requirements at the heart of the lawsuit but also points to Intel management knowingly imposing the demand on Microsoft to sell more Intel-based computers regardless of the slow performance and frustration they were likely to instill in customers. [via CNET]