Future compat is not back compat and wishing can't make it so....

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2010/02/10 07:01 -05:00, original URI: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/michkap/archive/2010/02/10/9960976.aspx

The other day when I wrote If it was not intended for that, don't do it. No, really. Stop. Now. Please? I did not have a specific relevant example on my mind.

But suddenly one came up....

It was a user, a customer who wanted to use two different non-Unicode applications on the same server, both using some other code page than the server's code page.

Just the kind of thing that App Locale was built to handle, right?

Well, not exactly.

They wanted to do it with ISO 8859-15 (aka Latin 9, aka Windows code page 28605).

Now hang on a second here.

There has never been a time in the history of Windows where one could reliably use code page 28605 as one's default system code page or default OEM system code page, in any kind of reliable, supportable way, at least.

So, there was never a time that this application would have worked, at least not the way the user would have liked.

App Locale, an application designed to help people support a legacy situation, has no standing here, and serves no purpose here.

And it not working here to solve the problem invented by an application that is designed incorrectly is entirely by design.

I repeat: BY DESIGN.

Now there are times things come up where I do not agree with decisions that Microsoft makes, so while I am on the whole an advocate for Microsoft technologies I'm hardly a blind fanboy who feels Microsoft can do no wrong.

But I am sleeping fine tonight in support of this particular verdict because if people want to work this far outside the system then running into problems is an expected consequence. I'll help them move their application to use Unicode, I'll do any number if things to help, but I am not going to support the efforts of the improperly designed application to behave incorrectly.

So help me Blog.

brazzy on 11 Feb 2010 2:26 AM:

Wait a sec... ISO 8859-15 is nothing but goold old ISO 8859-1 with the Euro replacing the generic currency symbol and some obscure letters replacing equally obscure punctuation characters.

So why exactly would Windows be incapable of supporting ISO 8859-15 as default system code page?

jmdesp on 11 Feb 2010 4:08 AM:

What's the specific kind of problem they had ? For us European, 8859-15 is quite useful and much less obsolete than the 8859-1 encoding, and until now I've seen it work quite well.

Of course they should update to unicode, but then.

Michael S. Kaplan on 11 Feb 2010 7:55 AM:

Since App Locale is ACP and OEMCP based (using a desinated deafult locale), plugging in a different kind of code page is not in scope for the tool.

Dale on 14 Feb 2010 11:46 PM:

Reading this post reminded me of a quote from another Microsoft blogger: "Straying from the path is straying into unknown lands."

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2010/02/18 Inappropriate use lead to problems, in non-technical areas too

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