The Olympics Chose Windows XP Over Vista, 7

As a Canadian, the winter Olympic games are a big deal to me. Not only are the games being held on home soil in Vancouver, but Canadian athletes are winning gold and both hockey squads are performing at exceptionally high levels.

Also performing well at the Olympics is Microsoft, as all of the computers used at the event run Windows. It's not Windows 7, but rather the ever-lasting Windows XP.

Acer won the contract to provide the computers for the 2010 games and confirmed that it shipped more than 6,000 notebooks and desktops for organizers of the event – all of which pack Windows XP rather than the Windows 7 OS found on all of Acer's retail offerings today.

"It was the operating system requested by VANOC (the Olympic organizing committee) and Atos Origin" (the technology integrator managing the Olympics tech operations), said Todd Olson, who manages Acer's tech work in Vancouver, as quoted by CNet.

Olympic organizers opted to go with Windows XP because Windows 7 was "a bit too new to be used."

So far, Windows XP has been doing exactly what is asked of it, with the only notable computer trouble coming at the hands of a bowl of soup rather than software. The incident came when an Olympics worker went into an excited cheer and spilled soup all over a laptop. The worker then shut off the laptop and later found that it still worked.

Acer offered to replace the machine, but the worker declined a new one as she didn't want to part with a notebook hearty enough to survive a bowl of soup.

Marcus Yam
Marcus Yam served as Tom's Hardware News Director during 2008-2014. He entered tech media in the late 90s and fondly remembers the days when an overclocked Celeron 300A and Voodoo2 SLI comprised a gaming rig with the ultimate street cred.
  • Silluete
    And they say Acer is crap. But again pc for olympics must be mintpicked anyway. Good to hear nothing bad happen.
  • victomofreality
    Well it is the most well known widely used windows out there. Should hope it's stable by this point.
  • Bolbi
    I wonder what will happen to all those PCs after the Olympics? For longevity afterwards, Win7 would be better. But of course, the VANOC's job is to get the Olympics done right. And if XP works for them, I'm glad that's what they went with.
  • amabhy
    "she didn't want to part with a notebook hearty enough to survive a bowl of soup."

    I see what you did there lol
  • False_Dmitry_II
    If they're buying a crapton of computers for something that lasts a couple of months what happens to the computers afterwards? And what were they using before? I'm sure they weren't just computerless.

    If they're tossing them, I'd gladly take a couple...
  • cletus_slackjawd
    I'd like to know how long these 6,000 Notebooks have been issued for and how much use they've seen. I'm sure these will be nice collector items too as they'd have the Olympic Logo printed on them. I find it very impressive that they've worked with 100% reliablity. Did they go through extra Q&A before going out? Out of the 5 notebook computers I've purchased I've had one DOA. Also have experience 2 HDD failures out of the 5 notebooks after about a year each of service. My point is sort of Q&A is in the gutter these days and 6,000 of these things have work flawlessly so far.
  • JohnnyLucky
    I'm wondering if the employees get to keep them.
  • gekko668
    I think acer cherry picked the laptop that work the best since it also a free marketing for them. One swell swoops and their brand will be globally tarnished and no millions of dollars in marketing will recover that.
  • The laptop should be given a gold medal.
  • carlhenry
    do_eeetThe laptop should be given a gold medal.
    i second that lol