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Why IIS is not in XP Home

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  • User profile image
    Keskos

    I love asp.net, it is a great technology, but Windows XP Home doesn't have IIS, so I can't distribute my programs to home users. I would really like to have XP Home to have something similar to IIS. There is a free web server, written in C#, but that doesn't support ssh and many more things. So why not make IIS part of the XP Home? It is already part of XP Professional.

    Another issue is, .net is quite nice and useful, but not everybody has .net runtime. Microsoft wants developers to move to .net, but I don't see a great effort from Microsoft to put .net into every desktop out there. Is this about the java lawsuits? Recently there was a free security update CD from Microsoft, but as far as I know it didn't include .net. So far it looks like .net is for servers, not for desktops. Why is that?


  • User profile image
    Manip

    You said it your self, Pro has it and home doesn't.. think about that...

    Then consider the word 'pro' and the word 'home' and the price tag attached to both products.

  • User profile image
    jonathanh

    .NET is most definitely for desktops as well. 

    To pull it down onto desktops, there's a sample application installer on MSDN that you can use for your apps, which fetches and installs the CLR if it's not present.  To push it down onto desktops, recent OS service packs include it, and it's also being pushed out over Windows Update.

  • User profile image
    Richard Acton

    Well your average Joe who uses their computer for nothing more than writing letters and sending emails will most likey have their PC connected to the Internet without any firewall and in a lot of cases, no antivirus.

    Imagine how much worse virii the likes of Nimda would have been if all these unprotected XP home machines were running IIS. You could argue IIS should have been packaged with XP Home but disabled as default, but these same home users wouldn't know how to enable and then patch their web server even if you were to start deploying asp.net based apps to them.

    When I was running XP home I would have liked the option to install IIS from the CD, but as Manip says, you have to pay the extra for that privilege and rightly so IMHO.

  • User profile image
    Keskos

    Richard Acton wrote:
    Well your average Joe who uses their computer for nothing more than writing letters and sending emails will most likey have their PC connected to the Internet without any firewall and in a lot of cases, no antivirus.


    Ok, but not every average joe is like that. XP Pro comes with IIS but you have to install it yourself. There are more XP Pro users than XP Home users as far as I know. You are right that IIS will cause more security headaches, but what I want from Microsoft is to make IIS as secure as possible and then put it into next Windows and make the IIS updates part of the Windows update.

    Richard Acton wrote:

    Imagine how much worse virii the likes of Nimda would have been if all these unprotected XP home machines were running IIS. You could argue IIS should have been packaged with XP Home but disabled as default, but these same home users wouldn't know how to enable and then patch their web server even if you were to start deploying asp.net based apps to them.

    When I was running XP home I would have liked the option to install IIS from the CD, but as Manip says, you have to pay the extra for that privilege and rightly so IMHO.

    Part of the problem now is that you can't even have people to use IIS, not that they can't use it or patch it but because they don't have access to it.

    IIS, even in XP Pro is not a big priviledge. There is a limitation on the number of connections to the server, thus it is not like windows server 2003. It is useful and helpful though. So I disagree that you have to pay for that extra priviledge.

  • User profile image
    Richard Acton

    Keskos wrote:


    Ok, but not every average joe is like that. XP Pro comes with IIS but you have to install it yourself. There are more XP Pro users than XP Home users as far as I know. You are right that IIS will cause more security headaches, but what I want from Microsoft is to make IIS as secure as possible and then put it into next Windows and make the IIS updates part of the Windows update.


    IIS is updated with Windows Update, but that isn't the problem. The initial configuration of IIS is what causes the headaches; open SMTP relays being the best example. IIS 6 is much more secure, but this isn't technology that you would want most none-IT literate people responsible for. Most IT illiterate people (and some people with plenty of IT experience) still don't run Windows Update.. Even though the task tray icon is blinking at them telling them new updates are ready to install! (The so called Risk Manager where I work is a good example of this!!! He has 30+ outstanding Win2k updates on his laptop waiting to be installed)

    If your a user and you think you might want to use IIS, then you should be clever enough to realise that you need to buy the Pro version, for Professionals. Wink

    Keskos wrote:

    Part of the problem now is that you can't even have people to use IIS, not that they can't use it or patch it but because they don't have access to it.


    IIS is a server based application. If you want your users to run applications based on asp.net then install the application on a server and give them an IP address to connect to. Local installations of IIS should be restricted for development usage, hense the single web site limit, hense the 10 concurrent user limit.

    Keskos wrote:



    IIS, even in XP Pro is not a big priviledge. There is a limitation on the number of connections to the server, thus it is not like windows server 2003. It is useful and helpful though. So I disagree that you have to pay for that extra priviledge.


    At the end of the day, XP Home is packaged and marketted towards home users, your average Joe who has no intention of doing anything more than writing letters, maybe sending emails and playing games. These guys don't open Control Panel because they are scared they might screw up their system, and those curious enough to try reconfiguring the page file to free up more hard disk space will more often than not find their PC won't boot in the morning. That is the skill level XP Home has to cater for.


    XP Pro, for professionals will always provide the more advanced functionality. And I believe Internet services (that should really be running on a Server anyway) should stay in the hands of those who can be responsible for using them.

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    Keskos wrote:
    I love asp.net, it is a great technology, but Windows XP Home doesn't have IIS, so I can't distribute my programs to home users. I would really like to have XP Home to have something similar to IIS. There is a free web server, written in C#, but that doesn't support ssh and many more things. So why not make IIS part of the XP Home? It is already part of XP Professional.

    Another issue is, .net is quite nice and useful, but not everybody has .net runtime. Microsoft wants developers to move to .net, but I don't see a great effort from Microsoft to put .net into every desktop out there. Is this about the java lawsuits? Recently there was a free security update CD from Microsoft, but as far as I know it didn't include .net. So far it looks like .net is for servers, not for desktops. Why is that?


    Having IIS installed does not mean that you have .NET installed and having .NET installed does not mean that you have IIS installed.

    Keskos wrote:
    Ok, but not every average joe is like that. XP Pro comes with IIS but you have to install it yourself. There are more XP Pro users than XP Home users as far as I know. You are right that IIS will cause more security headaches, but what I want from Microsoft is to make IIS as secure as possible and then put it into next Windows and make the IIS updates part of the Windows update.


    Personally, I'd like to see Windows Update scan the system for all Microsoft software and search for updates for them as well.

    I'd also like to see Auto Update be programmable to check for updates on an hourly basis and automatically install (automatically installing them is in XP SP2 if I recall) them.

  • User profile image
    Richard Acton

    Shining Arcanine wrote:

    Personally, I'd like to see Windows Update scan the system for all Microsoft software and search for updates for them as well.


    Windows Update version 5 goes some way to achieving this.

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    Richard Acton wrote:
    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    Personally, I'd like to see Windows Update scan the system for all Microsoft software and search for updates for them as well.


    Windows Update version 5 goes some way to achieving this.


    When I used version 5, I don't recall it updating anything more than what version 4 updates. Anyway, when I say all software, I mean Encarta, Zoo Tycoon, Office, and everything else Microsoft makes. It would make keeping computers up to date much easier.

  • User profile image
    Richard Acton

    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    Richard Acton wrote:
    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    Personally, I'd like to see Windows Update scan the system for all Microsoft software and search for updates for them as well.


    Windows Update version 5 goes some way to achieving this.


    When I used version 5, I don't recall it updating anything more than what version 4 updates. Anyway, when I say all software, I mean Encarta, Zoo Tycoon, Office, and everything else Microsoft makes. It would make keeping computers up to date much easier.


    I believe it will include updates for Office, but you're right.. it would be cool if windowsupdate would also install the latest Halo patch for me as well.

  • User profile image
    lars

    Keskos wrote:
    I love asp.net, it is a great technology, but Windows XP Home doesn't have IIS, so I can't distribute my programs to home users.


    Sounds like you're writing WebForms when you should be using WinForms. 

    Keskos wrote:
    So why not make IIS part of the XP Home? It is already part of XP Professional.


    To make you fork out for the Pro version!

    Keskos wrote:

    Another issue is, .net is quite nice and useful, but not everybody has .net runtime.


    Download it from Microsoft. It's free. When I run Windows update on a fresh intall it even shows up there.

    /Lars.

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    Richard Acton wrote:
    I believe it will include updates for Office, but you're right.. it would be cool if windowsupdate would also install the latest Halo patch for me as well.


    Correct me if I'm wrong but doesn't Office Update install the Office patches?

  • User profile image
    Jeremy W

    You're right.

    Maybe the proposed solution here isn't so much that XP Home should have IIS... But that there might be a market for a "Developer Edition" or something. Something in between?

    Or, really, would that actually complicate things? Right now the line is fairly clear: if you want it for office / development / networking stuff, go with Pro. It's easy to explain to users.

  • User profile image
    Larry​Osterman

    Btw, XP SP2 adds an HTTP server to the home SKU, it's just not IIS.  One of the changes in XP SP2 was that every app shipped in XP that had a home-brewed HTTP server was required to switch to use HTTP.SYS.

    So there is an HTTP server in XP home, it's just that you don't get all the IIS features.

  • User profile image
    OldManCoyote

    Looks like Microsoft is shooting itself in the foot here.

    They want developers to create products on their OS's, but don't supply the underlying framework to make any of those products work. Home uses could care less if IIS has been installed, up until they try and run a program that uses it. Its the same way with .NET. You have the 1.1 Framework (and 2.0 Framework coming soon), but either is inherent to the OS itself.

    If Microsoft doesn't want to distribute the .NET framework, when they should put in a underlying ability to automatically download it to the OS when it detects its required. Its just like how WMP operates. If it needs a codec, it goes out, downloads, installs and runs the media item.

    A no brainer here.

  • User profile image
    phunky_avoc​ado

    I think some people are afraid that if they apply updates their systems will slow down or otherwise not function properly.  I know I have that fear as once or twice my system slowed down a whole lot; had to restore it, then wait a few months before trying the download again; then everything was fine. 

    And I am still at the point where I won't apply any driver updates at all because that put me into a whole world of hurt.  Someone please convince me the driver updates are safe now as maybe the reason my system is still slower than I think it should be is because I need a driver update.



    Richard Acton wrote:
    IIS is updated with Windows Update, but that isn't the problem. The initial configuration of IIS is what causes the headaches; open SMTP relays being the best example. IIS 6 is much more secure, but this isn't technology that you would want most none-IT literate people responsible for. Most IT illiterate people (and some people with plenty of IT experience) still don't run Windows Update.. Even though the task tray icon is blinking at them telling them new updates are ready to install! (The so called Risk Manager where I work is a good example of this!!! He has 30+ outstanding Win2k updates on his laptop waiting to be installed)

    If your a user and you think you might want to use IIS, then you should be clever enough to realise that you need to buy the Pro version, for Professionals. Wink

  • User profile image
    Sampy

    OldManCoyote wrote:

    Looks like Microsoft is shooting itself in the foot here.



    With this and the rumors of XBox non-backwards compatability, a lot of people think that we have a vendetta against our feet lately.

    OldManCoyote wrote:


    They want developers to create products on their OS's, but don't supply the underlying framework to make any of those products work. Home uses could care less if IIS has been installed, up until they try and run a program that uses it. Its the same way with .NET. You have the 1.1 Framework (and 2.0 Framework coming soon), but either is inherent to the OS itself.



    First, I really doubt there are many apps targeted at home users that require IIS installed locally. There are other options, however, such as ASP.Net's Cassini web server as well as other ASP.Net hosting options.


    OldManCoyote wrote:


    If Microsoft doesn't want to distribute the .NET framework, when they should put in a underlying ability to automatically download it to the OS when it detects its required. Its just like how WMP operates. If it needs a codec, it goes out, downloads, installs and runs the media item.

    A no brainer here.



    Secondly, we are working on ways to get the .Net framework out on more and more machines. An optional Windows Update item probably isn't the best way to do it; getting it out there with a killer app works great. Problem is, there isn't a good way for app developers to distrubute the framework today. We currently have the 2003 bootstrapper plugin for setup and deployment MSI projects that will package and install the framework. In Whidbey, we're working on a more generic bootstrapper that can not only install the framework but any other component that the developer needs on the machine.

    I've blogged about this in the past:
    2003 Plugin: http://blogs.msdn.com/misampso/archive/2004/03/09/86641.aspx
    Whidbey Bootstrapper: http://blogs.msdn.com/misampso/archive/2004/03/11/88402.aspx
    http://blogs.msdn.com/misampso/archive/2004/04/06/108533.aspx

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    phunky_avocado wrote:
     

    And I am still at the point where I won't apply any driver updates at all because that put me into a whole world of hurt.  Someone please convince me the driver updates are safe now as maybe the reason my system is still slower than I think it should be is because I need a driver update


    Driver updates are usually fine, *provided* you get them from the manufacturer rather than Windows Update. Microsoft never really wanted to offer third party drivers this way and to be brutally honest I think the world would be a better place if they didn't.

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