Menu
Microsoft to 'ribbonise' Vista with Windows 7 look

Microsoft to 'ribbonise' Vista with Windows 7 look

Microsoft will offer Windows 7's ribbon-style application interface to Windows Vista users in an update this October, according to the company.

As first reported by Long Zheng, the blogger who writes the popular istartedsomething.com, Microsoft will provide Vista users an optional update that installs the code necessary to display Windows 7's Ribbon framework on its predecessor.

The framework, called "Scenic Ribbon," is a derivation of the ribbon-esque "Fluent" user interface that debuted in Office 2007 two years ago. Both feature a wide ribbon-like display at the top of a window that replaces the traditional drop-down menus, small icons and toolbars that have standardized Windows applications' look-and-feel for decades. Office 2007 faced serious resistance from some users over the ribbon when it launched, although that has subsided over time.

More recently, complaints mounted over plans by OpenOffice.org to overhaul the interface of that open-source productivity suite. Some have blasted the organization for parroting Office 2007's ribbon.

"The Office ribbon sucks. Please don't copy it," wrote one user in a comment to a Sun Microsystems blog. Sun contributes engineering and developer time to OpenOffice.org.

Earlier this year, Microsoft said the ribbon interface would be used by both Microsoft and third-party developers to distinguish new applications for Windows 7 from older versions that ran, say, on Windows XP or Windows Vista.

"This is one of the things we think will differentiate apps written for Windows 7, as opposed to those for earlier versions of Windows," said Mike Nash, the head of Microsoft's Windows product management, in an interview with Computerworld last January.

That plan seems to be in tatters now. Starting in October, application developers will be assured that new software they've crafted to include the Scenic Ribbon interface will also run on Vista.

"A Windows 7 interoperability pack, known as the Windows 7 Client Platform Update, is to be released alongside Windows 7 in October of this year," said Karl Bridge, a Microsoft programming writer, in a message posted last week to a forum on the MSDN (Microsoft Developers Network) site. "This update provides down-level support for the Windows Ribbon framework and will be made available from the Microsoft Download Centre and as a 'Recommended update' on Windows Update."

Bridge added that the update will support all versions of Vista, including the entry-level Home Basic and Starter, which for Vista has been sold only in a limited number of markets overseas.

Application developers who build software with Windows 7's ribbon interface will have to point users to Windows Update or Microsoft's download site to grab the Client Platform Update, or silently call Windows Update as part of setup, Bridge said.

Microsoft's most visible "ribbonised" Windows 7 applications are the revamped Paint and retooled Wordpad, the basic image editor and word processor, respectively, bundled with the OS.

Windows XP users will be out of ribbon luck, however, as the October update will not apply to the eight-year-old operating system.


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags MicrosoftWindows 7vistainternational news

Featured

Slideshows

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Reseller News honoured the leading female front runners of the New Zealand channel at the 2018 Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) in Auckland. The awards honoured standout individuals across seven categories, spanning Entrepreneur; Innovation; Rising Star; Shining Star; Community; Technical and Achievement.

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel
Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Microsoft honoured leading partners across the channel following a year of customer innovation and market growth in New Zealand. The 2018 Microsoft Partner Awards recognised excellence within the context of the end-user, spanning a host of emerging and established providers.

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners
Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Introducing the Reseller News Innovation Awards, launched to the channel at the 2018 Judges’ Lunch in Auckland. With more than 70 judges now part of the voting panel, the new-look awards will reflect the changing dynamics of the channel, recognising excellence across customer value and innovation - spanning start-ups, partners, distributors and vendors.

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch
Show Comments