Computer makers have been told they'll no longer be able to get Windows XP OEM by the end of this year, despite consumer resistance to Vista and its compatibility problems.
By early 2008, Microsoft's contracts with computer makers will require companies to only sell Vista-loaded machines. "The OEM version of XP Professional goes next January," said Frank Luburic, senior ThinkPad product manager for Lenovo. "At that point, they'll have no choice."
Despite Microsoft's relentless promotion of Vista, manufacturers are still seeing plenty of demand from customers for systems preloaded with XP, especially in the finicky SOHO market.