Stack OverflowWhat technologies are you using even though they are embarassingly out of date?
[+61] [136] tomjen
[2009-04-15 07:08:59]
[ untagged ]

What old technology that should have been replaced long ago do you still use regularly, and why?

should be community wiki - anon
(11) <pedantry>I think you mean deprecated (superseded or out of date), rather than obsolete (no longer used or useful). By definition, if you're using something it isn't obsolete. </pedantry> - Unsliced
I agree with Neil, there can not be one correct answer to this question, hence it should be CW. - Tim Post
badly worded question, just because it should have been replaced doesn't make it obsolete. - Henry B
(3) I am really annoyed that this question has been closed! - Ola Eldøy
(10) I am really annoyed that this question was asked...what purpose does it serve? - Sampson
Newer is not always equal to better... ; ) - rlb.usa
I am really annoyed that this question is being questioned. What purpose are you serving by closing any question that can't be answered with a code snippet? - Kelly S. French
(3) @Kelly French: Signal to noise ratio. To paraphrase the FAQ, "this is a site for programming questions that can be answered." In my opinion, this question does not match the criteria and would probably be more welcome at . - Piskvor
I find it rather funny to count the number of windows products here. Typically, the unix/linux/mac people upgrade, but it seem that case quite isn't so for the corporate windows installs. - CodeJoust
[+173] [2009-04-15 07:15:43] Anton Gogolev

Visual SourceSafe, true devil incarnate:

alt text [1]


Oh man, I wish I would have thought of that one... awful! - Andy White
(11) Is that the chick from The Office? - mmcdole
Dunno, this picture used to be on VSS site. - Anton Gogolev
(154) LOL ever noticed that she is wearing red and seems to have 2 horns growing out of her head.... eck! - littlegeek
(1) @littlegeek. Did not notice that until you pointed out. Gold! :) - Marcel
(1) I am actually currently migrating my source code from VSS right now. - Jeff Cuscutis
(2) @Jeff All the best! - Anton Gogolev
It makes sense that VSS would be sold by the devil. - tom.dietrich
(1) Those aren't horns... It's a halo... ;-) - TGnat
(2) at least it's 2005, I have to work with the older versions.... - Mafti
@Mafti - they took a step back with 2005. stay with your older version! - dotjoe
(28) I hate you VSS. YOU HAVE ONE JOB, KEEP MY SOURCE SAFE! DO YOU DO THAT, NOOOOOOOOOOO! IT'S IN YOUR #$%@#%^#$# NAME: "source" "safe"!!! AAAAAARRGGH! - Aardvark
I've been using my sourcesafe -> bazaar importer.. Took way too long to build, because of how crappy sourcesafe is. And a lot of it is bad hacks :( - FryGuy
I love that SourceSafe no longer works in anything built on Vista cus they forget to implement WebDav.POST. Muppets. - Ed James
(1) I actually met someone who actually saw no problem with VSS. I honestly believe he is one of the very very very few who actually didn't have problems with it OR he didn't have to maintain it. - Nazadus
(2) @Nazadus, I thought there was no problem with vss until the day when I've switched to SVN :D - Nicolas Dorier
Have you tried Rational Clear Case? - Matthew Whited
@Matthew Whited, not a fan of Clear Case, that UI with the eye-ball, ug! Made my brain hurt. I recall a lot of the more modern SCM features were all wrapped up in "RUP" that there no way to use just what you wanted. It was all-or-nothing. Still, better then VSS. - Aardvark
(2) @Aardvark: I mean... do you really believe in microsoft marketing keywords ? - Stefano Borini
@Stefano Borini: I drank some cool aid at a TechEd, never been right since... - Aardvark
[+127] [2009-04-15 14:11:36] silverArc

Internet Explorer 6. Our corporate standard !!??

(16) That makes me sad to hear... - bendewey
(11) Change corporations. - jmucchiello
(1) Our school! Especially the lack of transparent PNGs... ouch. - Lucas Jones
Yeah my corporation uses it because its the 'safest' I laugh, and the main security guy in charge always puts up such a battle to make his point clear that IE6 is SAFEUUUR than ANYTHING EVER, because MS provides 0 day patches (ha!) - Jakub
Where I work is just now moving to IE7 so I can feel your pain... fixing bugs in our new CMS in IE 6 that break other browsers is jut painful at times. - JB King
(2) We just switched to IE7 about 3 weeks ago. What a joke. - Stewbob
We haven't yet made the transition yet to IE7, but my latest project just finished where the only officially support browser was IE6... and that was what the developers' mindset was... IE6 only. Terrible. - Zack The Human
Same situation here. - John Gietzen
I know your pain! - Jason Irwin
[+117] [2009-04-15 07:13:31] Andy White

cmd.exe - Quite possibly the worst command-line interface out there, but it's available on every Windows machine.

(1) "every7 Windows machine"; it depends how far back you go... ;-p - Marc Gravell
Is there a better one? Do tell. - recursive
(12) better ones? regardless of platform? how about bash, zsh etc... - Maximiliano Guzman
(1) @Marc - pretty far from today. - Rook
(6) Whenever I have to dev on Windows machines Cygwin gets installed first. - Jon W
(1) @Jweede: Yeah, I honestly believe that Cygwin is possibly the best thing Windows has got going for it these days :) - Dan Moulding
Although cygwin is the real WTF since you cannot install more packages without using their graphical installer (!) - Alexander Torstling
[+109] [2009-04-15 07:17:16] uuɐɯǝʃǝs


(1) Notepad still has its uses. - Tim Post
(3) Notepad is the - Daud Ahmad
(2) LOL, Notepad is the best friend of the user on Windows, after Paint and card games of course - Steel Plume
(13) Why? Why do you do that? There are so many alternatives out there and every single one of them is better ;-) - Joachim Sauer
(2) LOL! This should be the accepted answer! - hasen
(3) Notepad is the top app in the most used section of my Start menu. :) - Andrei Vajna II
@Andrei mine too - Jayrox
(45) Nothing wrong with Notepad - Rory Becker
(16) Rory, nothing right with it! :) - hasen
Check out OneNote sometime. It worths it. - Sandor Davidhazi
(10) How notepad is better than "other apps": 1. Available on any default installation of Windows. 2. Faster load time. 3. Best unicode support. 4. Less clumsy and confusing menu system. - CDR
Are we upvoting the answer because we also use it, or because it shouldn't be used? Notepad is really the most "embarrassing" because there is so much hostility towards its continued use (especially as a development tool). And unlike VSS or IE, people aren't forced to use it -- we choose to. - harpo
(14) @CDR "Faster load time" only if you're opening a small file or creating a new one. Try opening a 10MB log file in Notepad :P - Davy8
(5) use notepad++... x10000000 better.. and to extend what Davy8 said, at least you can open a 10MB file without sending it non-responsive. - waqasahmed
@CDR Not only is notepad available on any "default installation" of Windows, it can't be deleted! (at least on XP) - I. J. Kennedy
(1) I deleted Notepad on my Windows XP machine. Replaced it with Notepad2. You have to make sure you eradicate it from \WINDOWS, \WINDOWS\system32 and \WINDOWS\system32\dllcache all at once. Windows will prompt you for your installation CD so it can restore it, but you can cancel it. Then just rename Notepad2.exe to Notepad.exe and place it in all aforementioned locations. - Samir Talwar
(4) How Notepad is worse than other apps: 1. Doesn't support Unix line endings, 2. No syntax highlighting, 3. No recent files menu, 4. No tabs/MDI. - DisgruntledGoat
(6) The lack of Unix line ending support is what erks me the most about Notepad. What's the point of an editor if it won't let me edit half of the files I work with day to day? - William Casarin
@Davy8: Why aren't you rolling your log files at a lower size? - tsilb
(1) lightning fast, no bells or does exactly what is says on the tin and I have nothing against it. AND, if you have a 10MB file, you really should be using an application other than a simple text editor to interface with it (IMHO) - Jason Irwin
[+88] [2009-04-15 07:12:21] Simon Nickerson

Windows batch files.

I use them because they're extremely easy to deploy, even though the language is embarrassingly awful.

(28) If people knew and appreciated how much mission critical operational software at multi-billion dollar corporations was written in batch the DOW would probably drop 30% overnight. - Wedge
(2) batch is obsolete like bash is obsolete -1 - Henry B
How is batch obsolete? What has replaced it? - recursive
(1) Modern Windows OSes have much more advanced scripting capabilities than DOS batch files. Windows Script Host for example allows use of JScript and VBScript. Windows is not DOS-based anymore. - Calvin
Actually windows batch files are more advanced that DOS-based ones ever were. Type help in a CMD window sometime. - jmucchiello
(1) @PintSizedCat powershell has obsoleted .bat files. It does a pretty good job IMO - Nathan
(4) @PintSizedCat: Bash isn't obsolete. It is a fully-fledged scripting language in it's own right. It isn't even bad! - Lucas Jones
(6) Type 'title poop haha' in a cmd window sometime - justinhj
batch files are still alive and well in many software packages...sadly - Andrew Sledge
Is Bourne Again Shell obsolete because of ZSH? It's the only reason I can think of, since bash is not embarrassingly outdated. - dlamblin
(1) @Nathan Reed - the fact that something is newer is not a guarantee that it will survive in real life practice. Batch was simple, easy and did the job. Those traits are more important than one would think (think VB6 for a similar analogy). PWS is made for programmers, batch files were understandable in just a few minutes of tinkering. - Rook
[+54] [2009-04-15 09:23:01] Simeon Pilgrim

Visual Basic [1] 6.0. Not really obsolete, but embarrassingly horrible.


(5) I wish I knew enough to know what's embarassingly horrible about vb6 cos I think it's great. - kjack
(2) Well the editor for one thing, no mouse scroll courses no end of pain. The way it dynamically search for .dll and .ocx files each time you open the project, thus the project files changes, then then break your build machine. The bloody annoying auto compile with it's modal pop-up. - Simeon Pilgrim
Thanks, I guess I don't miss what I never had! - kjack
If your trained to work within the VB mindset, I could see it working, but I'm so used to moving around the code with it not being complete until I'm done, so the auto-compile breaks my thought train. - Simeon Pilgrim
(3) I generally stick in a dummy var to avoid the message, but you can turn it off at Tools -> options, uncheck "auto syntax check" (Thanks to MarkJ for this tip) - kjack
'auto syntax check" ah, that's better, thank you so much.... - Simeon Pilgrim
Lookup "KatMouse" to fix ScrollWheel - Rory Becker
(5) Argg, don't solve the simple hates, I still refuse to be happy, we hates it. We hates it my precious. - Simeon Pilgrim
In Scotland, loads of secondary schools still teach VB6 as part of their "Computing" Standard Grade (no idea what the US equivalent is), some even for their [Advanced] Higher (think AP CS). Thankfully the tests just say "an appropriate high-level language". - Lucas Jones
@person-b We don't generally have those types of "tracks" in high school, though some high schools may have a "programming" class or whatever. When I was in HS that class was VB of some sort, but I didn't take it, and I don't know if it still is (I took AP CS). - Adam Jaskiewicz
(2) I can't believe VB6 is still around, and that people are still using it. Once you let go of it, it becomes like a bad movie you saw years ago. I did nothing but VB from 1995 to 2005, and yesterday I got down-voted for getting a VB6 question totally wrong. Felt great. :) - MusiGenesis
@Simeon: I'm embarrassed to say this, but if you install the MS IntelliMouse driver, you can scroll in VB6, if I remember correctly. The really horrible thing about VB6 is that it's a dead end technology. There really was no CREDIBLE way to move your apps to VB.NET. You just pretty much have to rewrite it all or suck it up and live with it until you or your company goes away. - Dave Markle
[+53] [2009-04-15 08:51:12] Colin Pickard

PVCS splash screen

PVCS [1], the Polytron Version Control System. Over 20 years old and barely changed in that time. It's actually older than CVS.

But we're on version 6.7.11, which was updated only 8 years ago, and even comes with a Java 1.3.0 GUI client!


(5) whaaaaaaaaat? :) :) - dfa
(8) That graphic is awesome. - Min
(3) I hate PVCS. All it does is get in your way. DAMN YOU PVCS. - moffdub
(2) Wow...I didn't know anyone still used that monstrosity. At a previous employer, we actually had one guy on staff who did nothing but babysit our PVCS install. - Matt Peterson
[+48] [2009-04-15 07:46:38] Mitch Flax

HTML tables.

I just really don't care what it looks like if I'm the only person that needs to look at it.

I don't care at all. There are no alternatives. - User
(12) It's actually a good idea to use tables, especially when you want the browser to render a table ;-) - Tim Büthe
well there is an alternative and it's CSS :) But most of the time it doesn't worth the hassle. - dr. evil
For layout, I presume! To be fair, I find the CSS route easier because the HTML is just DIVs rather than the mush of table tags. - JeeBee
(35) - Mark Renouf
(4) For large-scale layouts, the (superior) alternative is CSS, but that does not mean you now have to use CSS instead of <table> everywhere. It's still perfectly OK to use <table> when you need, ya know, a table! Like, for displaying lots of data in rows and columns... - Michael Borgwardt
@tweakt Funny that site is using divs + css and fails to render properly in IE8. If they had used tables.... - benmatth
(6) Using tables for layout gives me a double hit of joy. First, the guilty pleasure of doing something I'm not supposed to; second, the satisfaction at actually being able to get it to look the same in 7 browsers. - Alex
My favourite thing about is the correct semantic usage of the <sarcasm> tag ;) - Delameko
I'm constantly amazed that people find HTML tables easier for layout than CSS. Are you all using visual layout tools? Anytime I have to manage table layouts of any real complexity, I get utterly lost in the markup. Anytime I have to make even trivial changes to table layouts of any real complexity, I end of chasing a seemingly endless stream of unintended consequences. CSS could be much better than it is—and browser behavior more than that—but it certainly is preferable for the complex layouts I deal with on a daily basis. - eyelidlessness
[+47] [2009-04-15 13:12:29] dotjoe

Windows XP

(36) The question asked for "embarrassingly obsolete". I don't think it's embarrassing to be using the last good version of a Windows operating system. - David Koelle
But it is very old (released Oct 2001) - DrHazzard
(11) old does not equal obsolete - Tester101
To quote the original question "What old technology that should have been replaced long ago do you still use regularly, and why?", it says old not obsolete :) - DrHazzard
(4) Surely "should have been replaced" implies obsolete? - Blorgbeard
(3) Whatever...XP is obsolete, old, out of date and needs replacing! :0 - dotjoe
(6) @dotjoe: I Disagree - So far I have not heard any good reason to replace it. - Treb
(1) Surely Vista is the funny answer; not even service packed to be useful yet, and already its successor is available to pre-order. - Daniel Earwicker
(2) Windows 7 is actually nice enough that it may make XP obsolete, however it's too early to conclusively say that just yet. - Esko
Here we are using Windows 2000 ¬¬ - voyager
If XP were 64bit (I know there is one, but I've heard it's poorly supported), then I would never leave it... Unfortunately at some point I am going to have to realise I need to upgrade. I use Vista at work and it's shocking in everyway compared to vista. - Ian
yea, my previously inherited machine had XP64 on it. That twas hell on earth! - dotjoe
I still prefer XP. Main reasons are that it has a better interface, for me at least. I have a more responsive feeling. - Dykam
Happy to report I'm on Windows 7 these days... - dotjoe
[+45] [2009-04-15 07:24:12] splicer

Paper, especially for typography proofing: an LCD just can't compete with that kind of DPI and contrast.

(5) I'm tempted to upvote this. But then again, I don't consider paper to be remotely obsolete. It still has many advantages. - Wedge
Don't use no paper no more... - Daud Ahmad
(2) Paper has some advantages that e-media cannot overcome. You can read papers while sitting in the throne room, with no danger of short-circuiting any text... - Tim
paper is never too old a technology. - hasen
(16) Paper is not obsolete or deprecated! Nothing better has ever come along to replace it. - David Koelle
@Tim, you can do something else with the paper there ! It's multi-function... Thank's to domotics technologies, maybe we can imagine a computer in this place too. - Nicolas Dorier
Yeah, fold your laptop into an airplane and throw it. Which tech allows you to still read the document afterward? - jmucchiello
paper is not really out of date... - Nathan
@Tim, @Slashene - I often read my iPhone on the toilet. But I haven't tried wiping my arse with it yet. Maybe there's an app for that? - Daniel Earwicker
[+45] [2009-04-15 07:40:19] Rick J

My wife [1]...


(46) ...until his wife reads it - Manos Dilaverakis
(47) ...then he becomes obsolete too. - Tim
(5) Yeah, but rolling out an upgrade has a very low ROI. - jmucchiello
(30) Hey at least she's not open source - Mike Robinson
(18) But if she were open source, you could just fork her and go about your business. - Chris Farmer
you never know lol - Maciek
(4) Sorry, not even funny. - elcuco
(1) @chris - I upvoted you, and it just hit me what a strange sense of humor we have, when compared with normal people. It's like letter I read in DDJ many years ago about some non-Unix guy who kind of freaked out reading Unix docs about parents killing their children. Christ, how can you impart the humor of that to someone who isn't in this biz? That's why beer breaks without the spouse are important in this line of work. - xcramps
(8) Thanks for the Wikipedia link, needed that... - Aardvark
(2) Would this be funnier if it was 'My husband' instead? - Cynthia
(1) @Cynthia wow! have a sense of humor... no need to be a feminazi... - Rick J
(2) @Peter Mortenson: did you have some weird goal of editing every single answer to this question? - MusiGenesis
(3) some clichés are not funny anymore. - Rahul
(2) Were they ever? - Jeanne Pindar
But xcramps, what if some of your coworkers ARE women? Whatever will you do then? - pfctdayelise
(1) A great comedian RedFox said: "Show me a husband that won't and I will show you a neighbor that will." If you think she is out of date then dump her. There are oceans of men that will make her feel "current". Since your answer is no then evidently she is updated and relevant. - Phil
[+45] [2009-04-15 08:27:19] Janco

I find myself using Microsoft Calculator [1], even if I'm working in Excel!


(2) hehe Nice one :) - ThorHalvor
Yes, definitely! That's the best tool! I'd like to see a better calculator from another OS. - Andrei Vajna II
(11) calc is my #2 most used app on my start menu. second only to notepad. - Jayrox
It's the only app I can launch quickly on my Windows machine! - Ola Eldøy
Here's an alternative: - splicer
(1) I pit‌​/… over any calculator any day. the hex conversions and rudimentary graphing alone are worth it. - Arnshea
Using calc even when in Excel makes perfect sense. You don't need to mark and delete cells from your excell when you are finished. Plus there is the less typing/clicking. - CDR
The first two programs I install on a new Windows machine i SciTE and Console Calculator then I had keyboard shortcuts to them. I feel naked without them. - Jonas Elfström
+1 I'm guilty of this one. - Dusty
Hopefully you've enabled the Scientific mode at least! - David Glass
@Andrei Vajna II - To me, Gnome's calculator is way better. I like to be able to enter a full equation instead of 1 number at a time. - dotjoe
[+37] [2009-04-15 08:20:28] Mia Clarke


(1) I love minesweeper...greatest game ever... - Daud Ahmad
(3) While playing you can use the excuse you are working on solving an NP complete problem (see - Simon Nickerson
(2) Why is Minesweeper obsolete? What has replaced it? - DisgruntledGoat
Minesweeper is not obsolete. - eyelidlessness
Minesweeper "movie" trailer: - Shark8
[+36] [2009-04-15 12:06:57] sharkin

My Iomega ZIP drive with 100 MB disks...

I think because of some twisted psychological romantic flaw in me.

(1) It's like playing Russian Roulette with your data! - CloudyMusic
That's really sad. - rvarcher
(2) You do realize you can get 2 GB USB Drives at Walmart for $10. - Kibbee
(6) Yes, but they don't fizz, and twizzle, and rinzchrinsch when I insert them.. - sharkin
(15) Change the "new hardware detected" sound on your desktop... - jmucchiello
You know drug companies give away 128MB USB drives like candy, right? - MusiGenesis
[+35] [2009-04-15 07:43:22] Mark Struzinski

Classic ASP...I itch uncontrollably and start to shake every time I have to maintain one of those pages rather than rewriting it in ASP.NET!

We have 3K+ pages just sitting out there right now.

Do you agree If you could replace word 'ASP' to 'Classic ASP' since this term is more famous for ols ASP apps. ? - this. __curious_geek
(1) Funny enough I think writing Classic ASP is so much quicker for dirty tasks then writing ASP.NET. It's like writing perl to hack something instead of writing a .NET application with the all compiling overhead and other complexity of it. - dr. evil
Bleh! ASP! That is a very unfortunate situation to be in. - glenatron
Worst part about is that I have the ok to rewrite this stuff - I just can't carve out the time!! - Mark Struzinski
Too funny. I was just taking a break from maintaining some awful legacy classic ASP when I came across this post. If only I could upvote this more than once. - Dinah
[+31] [2009-04-28 19:45:33] Shing Yip [ACCEPTED]

RCS [1]. Before I check in changes to a "RCS like" repository, I email the whole group with the list of files I modified and see if anyone is also checking in the same files today so we don't overwrite each other's changes. Don't laugh... this isn't funny if you have to do it everyday :..(


(3) Wow, seriously? Switching version control systems is one of the easier things to do within an organization. - Ryan McGeary
(1) Actually, I use RCS on a daily basis without any bad thoughts whatsoever - for backing up configuration files on my machine prior to updates. (Gentoo Linux "dispatch-conf" even does this automatically.) For local-only, one-person-only use, RCS is definitely good enough. - DevSolar
OM$%!, haven't you heard of Subversion? RCS is horrible! - Dave Markle
Our switch to subversion was absolutely painless. Do it tomorrow. - John Gietzen
(6) You should give cvs, svn a pass and directly use Git. - Lakshman Prasad
[+27] [2009-04-15 09:55:52] User


They are defective by design. So many years have gone by and the committee responsible for their development hasn't done their job to fix and improve them.

Requirements of these days stretched HTML/CSS far over their limits. And there are still no alternatives.

(12) actually, they are not defective by design, only the whole community abused and raped html for new stuff. the whole http-protocol needs to be dumped and a new one created - Mafti
(6) The creators of HTML and CSS failed to really take into account that people might want to design web pages. The deficiencies of html and CSS are obvious to anyone who has attempted even the most modest of designs. - Breton
(1) Since HTML was created with the idea of NOT specifying any design (which was a sensible idea back then), I don't consider it to be defective. We just constantly try to use it for something it was not designed for - that's our fault, not HTML's. - Treb
(3) There are plenty of fundamentals flaws in the HTML spec, even without people abusing it. HTML is a horrible standard (if you can even call it that, since it doesn't really standardize much, only tell you what you "should" do, if you're in a good mood. Oh, and let's not ignore all the contradictions inherent in the specs for making it XHTML compatible. (such as <br/> actually having a different meaning in "actual" HTML - which no browser implements, for obvious reasons). Yes, it is broken. And that is why people abuse it, which in turn helps keep it broken. - jalf
@Mafti. HTTP needs to be replaced to add additional interactivity, IP needs to be replaced to add security. In fact, pretty much every Internet protocol needs to be torn up and replaced to fix something that turned out to be a flaw or shortcoming. Except the replacements will have their own flaws and shortcomings once we find new ways to use and abuse them over the next few decades. - Tyler McHenry
@Tyler At least we can spent these decades with better protocols. After first decade or two of their integration, of course. - Kuroki Kaze
[+26] [2009-04-15 14:28:41] CLaRGe

The old unreliable floppy disk.

alt text [1]


I don't know about reliable, those metal slides always broke off in my drive bay. boo. - bendewey
(14) Back in the day, if I had to move data across town, I would make 2 or three copies of a floppy b/c by the time I got to the destination at least one of those floppies would have a read error. - CLaRGe
You call a 3.5" old? I still have some 5.25" drives around. - David Thornley
@bendewey - I have loads of old floppies with the slide removed years ago that still work fine (I always use a floppy for bios flashing et cetera) - DrHazzard
(15) My son built his first PC for his 14th birthday. He didn't even want a floppy. I was sad. :-) - CLaRGe
(3) Reliable, feh. I never had a 5.25" disk spontaneously go bad. 3.5", all the time. - Jeffrey Hantin
@Jeffrey Hantin - I thought it was just me. :-) - CLaRGe
No, same thing here! :-) - Adrian Grigore
(1) It depended which you brought, the cheap ones always failed after alot of use, the better ones tended to last - DrHazzard
(1) Why do you still need to use floppies? - Tarnay Kálmán
After using floppies for so long during my "formative" geek years I have grown attached and don't really want to give them up just yet. - CLaRGe
I still use Floppy Disks at university when I need to hand in code as part of an assignment. I'd use a CD but floppy drives are still more common than CD burners at my university... - Mike B
(2) CD/DVD drive is now obsolute like the floppy. Everyone now uses the USB flash drive. - CDR
flash drives would be pretty expensive to turn in... of course that's what the internet is for ;) - Matthew Whited
(2) I've still got 25-odd blanks in a drawer. Can't remember the last time I saw a floppy drive however... It dawns on me that best way for the government to keep its secrets safe would be to store them on floppies. Next time they leave one on a train the kids would have no idea what to do with it ;) - Delameko
(1) When I got a new desktop a few years ago, I got a floppy drive, not because I needed it, but because it cost $20, so there was no good reason not to take it. Never used it since. - Marius
Sometimes I still have to hit F6 near the beginning of a Windows reinstallation. You get one guess what kind of media it reads drivers from. Without those drivers Windows won't find hard drives to install itself to. - Windows programmer
(1) Floppy disks remain a really convenient way of writing little bootloaders and kernels in assembly language. Oh wait, that's obsolete too :( - Artelius
[+25] [2009-04-15 07:19:28] Artelius

Pen and paper.

It isn't because computer interfaces aren't good enough (though that's an important consideration). The main reason is that it just seems more human. Another reason is that, while they have their own failings, pen and paper can't be hacked, can't crash, and remove that dangerous temptation to get the computer to help you out.

I was going to go with Pencil and Paper. I use them as the first step in wireframing sites/applications. - Travis
Not obsolete, though, not by a long shot :) - Mihai Limbășan
(1) If you are dyslexic, pen / pencil and paper CAN crash ... - Tim Post
(25) -1 Not remotely obsolete. - Pete Kirkham
@tinkertim: Hah. Nice, I need to remember that. Wish I could upvote comments :) - Mihai Limbășan
Wouldn't running out of ink be a crash? - Tester101
Running out of ink is about as annoying as a file being read-only. Get a new pen already. - Artelius
Its not embarrasing to use pen and paper. Heck, I would be awed by someone programming on pen and paper (not punch cards). - MrValdez
(3) Be awed, then: - Artelius
[+24] [2009-04-15 07:13:41] pmarflee

I still have a VCR in my living room (although I don't use it much these days).

I have a cassette player. 2 decks. The future is here! - Tom
I use the VCR all the time, to covert old tapes to DVD. - Bratch
@Bratch - same here. I wouldn't say it either that old, nor obsolete. - Rook
[+23] [2009-04-15 07:19:19] aJ.

Visual C++ [1] 6.0 compilers!

Many people on SO really wondered [2] about this.

Reason for not replacing-- Hmmm... I have not spoken to my manager yet!


If it's a budget problem, you might want to have a look at the latest VS Express editions. IMO even these are better than VC6. - Adrian Grigore
(3) The language accepted by VC6, and also other details such as workarounds for stl bugs and the way it loads DLLs, means a VC6 codebase requires significant effort to port to C++. Most VC6 apps pre-date common use of unit testing, so it really can be a high risk, complicated exercise. - Pete Kirkham
One thing however, the msdn help integration in vc6 is MUCH MUCH better than all the .net attempts. - Jim T
+100 Pete. That's why we're stuck on it. - jmucchiello
The VC6 compiler is still widely used within embedded development (telecom in particular). Most emulators and debugging tools are centered around the VC6 toolchain. - sharkin
I worked on a very monolithic VC6 project where we attempted to drag it kicking and screaming into the modern age. If I recall correctly, the deal breaker was getting it to compile with the _UNICODE flag-- it just required too many risky changes all over the place. - pjbeardsley
[+20] [2009-04-15 08:00:14] IanW

8051 microcontrollers. They date from the late 70's or early 80's but are now just so cheap and available plus I have so many pre-written libraries for them it would be daft to use any other micro for low end jobs.

I still have to deal with their accursed 9-bit serial modes. - Jeffrey Hantin
(3) 8051 will outlive us. - Marcelo MD
-1: b/c the 8051 is old does not mean it is outdated! you make the case in your answer why it is ideal in many projects. - San Jacinto
(1) We worked on an 8051 in my Embedded Systems course. I can see why they're popular. - rlbond
(1) There are better 8-bit MCUs available - like the HC08, a direct descendant of of the 6800, which itself predates the 6502, which was in widespread use in the 1970s. Self-contained HC08s are available for about $1 each in quantity. - Chromatix
[+18] [2009-04-16 23:59:34] Artelius


It should have been replaced long, long ago... the reason I still use it is obvious...

Funnily enough I'm typing this answer in Dvorak because I accidentally switched to Dvorak mode a few minutes ago.

(15) Why is DVORAK better than QWERTY? - Alix Axel
(4) @eyze because qwerty was made to slow you down and because, uh, there are lots of studies that WEREN'T headed by Dvorak that prove it! Wait, nevermind, that stuff is false. - TM.
(11) Just a random example: everytHinG cApitALizeD in tHiS Sentence iS on tHe Home row in qwerty. EvEryTHINg cApITAlIzED IN THIS SENTENcE IS ON THE HOmE rOw IN DvOrAk. Whether or not this translates to a real difference, I can't prove. But with Dvorak at least I know that actual research was behind the design... - Artelius
(7) The one thing I don't like about Dvorak is all the questions I get about why the 6 keys in the top left corner doesn't spell Dvorak. - Marius
[+17] [2009-04-15 08:32:07] Leonidas

My mouse. It should have been replaced by a Minority-Report-Fullbody-ShufflOMatic long ago.

No way, who wants to ponce around like some mime artist?! And what really gets me about that is that they're still using physical storage thingies to move data between workstations (flat cards that slide into the glass screen, or - strangest of all - a small wooden ball with words scratched on it). - Daniel Earwicker
[+14] [2009-04-15 12:58:35] Cruachan

Delphi [1] 6.

Because Borland/Inprise/CodeGear/WhateverItsCalledNow thoroughly lost its way after Delphi 7 and I was only upgrading on the alternative releases. I did buy Delphi 2005 but never upgraded anything to it as the hassle was simply not worth the effort (so what a waste of GBP [2] 300 that was). I still have several Win32 programs for clients in Delphi 6 and apart from a certain aging of the interface they work as well as they ever did.

IMHO Delphi is still the best native Win32 environment out there. Blindingly fast compiler, properly structured language and does 99.8% of everything you can do in C++ without all the development overheads of that.


You were upgrading on the wrong cycle! 5 and 7 were the versions to get. - Gabe Moothart
That's because I started with Delphi 1 (16 bit) then purchased Delphi 2 (32 bit windows 95!) when it came out, then was on the alternative version upgrade cycle thereafter - Cruachan
(2) Yep, D7 was best. I hate the fact that they don't release Personal Editions any more. I'm cheap... :(. But I downloaded Turbo Pascal from their (Borland's) "Antique Software" site. It's quite good, actually... - Lucas Jones
Indeed, it's possibly my main regret over the way software has developed that Borland fucked up so awfully over Delphi and it's other tools. The management that decided such great software company should concentrate on ALM or whatever it fucked itself up with should be taken out and shot. - Cruachan
Indeed. I'm also a bit disappointed that the dev-team didn't implement generics similar to Ada and went the Java-ish route. - Shark8
[+14] [2009-05-13 20:42:55] Rune Aamodt

win32.hlp win32.hlp

(1) I still prefer these guys to HTML-based help. - MusiGenesis
(6) My first reaction was that WinMain is the obsolete technology you use! - Beni Cherniavsky-Paskin
(1) Indeed, the .HLP systems tended to be MUCH better than their comparative HTML-based help systems. - Shark8
[+13] [2009-04-15 16:23:39] David Thornley

Around 2000, I was using a TRS-80 Model 4P (an ancient Z80A system with floppy drives, expandable to a whopping 128K of memory, which was addressable by bank switching, IIRC) in a vital role in Unix development.

Specifically, I put it in front of the outlet so I wouldn't knock the plug for the Unix system out of the wall when I stretched my feet. It worked very well.

[+12] [2009-04-15 07:45:19] Calmarius

Borland C++ 3.1


I use the tiny c compiler for quick and dirty C programming now, but I have TC 3.1 around... - Adam Davis
Don't even get me started on Borland C++... - Mike B
Turbo C ++ 3.1 Here ... Borland's red headed step child. - Tim Post
@Tim: I'm opposed to discrimination of gingers. - asdf
[+12] [2009-04-15 11:59:33] Marc Gravell

Visual InterDev 6.0, talking via FrontPage extensions to Visual SourceSafe.

It is so hunkered that if any of the config breaks, we're not sure that we can put it back together again...

OK seriously Marc, inquiring minds want to know why InterDev is still in use in your toolset. VS has been able to do classic ASP for a while, I thought? - p.campbell
@Philoushka - first, I must stress that this is only for legacy maintenance - but the reason is that the legacy build etc process depends on the FP/VSS integration, and it simply isn't worth investing the time to change it. Our .NET stuff is much better organised, you'll be glad to hear. - Marc Gravell
"if any of the config breaks, we're not sure that we can put it back together again..." Oh dear. That's exactly the situation with our TFS 2005 install. Tried upgrading it to 2008 once, but just got a strange and apparently unique error message. It took me three days to install it "correctly" in the first place (it seems to work, most of the time). We're looking at moving to Mercurial... - Daniel Earwicker
(1) @Earwicker- TFS is a beast to upgrade in an easy manner. - RichardOD
[+12] [2009-05-05 09:39:30] David Plumpton

Lotus Notes. :-(

that sad smiley says it all - Matt
[+11] [2009-05-01 12:55:05] Pascal Paradis

Visual FoxPro [1] 9.0.

I'm disappointed it still exists. Foxpro 9.0 runs on Windows 7! It will never die like Visual Basic 6.0 is still alive.


At least the packaging is improving. Looks futuristic and not at all like a clunky dBase UI system. - David
nothing rocks like the Fox. :-) - Mike Jacobs
The company I work for still uses it as well but it should be gone by this time next year. - Cfreak
Oh my god, this is actually worse than VB6. - MusiGenesis
[+10] [2009-08-26 13:29:42] KristoferA

My car has a diesel drinking internal combustion engine [1] with pistons driving a crankshaft. Pretty much a slightly modified version of what the first cars used in the 1890's or something.

Oh, and in the toilet we have one of those incandescent light bulbs [2] with a bayonet fitting.


+1 for the bayonet fitting lol - Allen Rice
You're still using toilets? :) - MusiGenesis
[+9] [2009-04-15 07:43:59] Mike

Objective-C. Wow, it's like going back in time 15 years after using C#/.NET.

(8) I'm afraid you've got a lot to learn then. - Rev316
(12) I really like Objective-C. Clean, focused. What's to complain about? - Cruachan
(4) A dynamic, compiled language with KVO, bindings, compatible with C, C++, bridged to Ruby, Python, Javascript and the CLR. I like it. - Sijmen Mulder
I think Objective-C would be great, if there was a standard GUI library. - computergeek6
[+9] [2009-04-15 12:15:42] BlackShift

Predating digital computers:

Time measured in hours, minutes and seconds. Having a base 2-12-60(-60) system might have been nice when we had to convert by hand (divisible by 2,3,4,(5,),6(,10) is useful), but not any more when we use computers to calculate.

At that, the decimal system. Why not switch to binary (or hexadecimal, that's the same)!

As an astronomer: the magnitude system. The brightest star visible by the human eye gets 'magnitude 1', the second brightest '2' all the way to magnitude 6. This happens to be a base 2.5 scale in luminosity. Base 2.5!

We should discard all these millennia old technologies and reinvent them as if we did not know how we originally did it.

good point! though we have layers of abstraction built around most (1.1.1970+millis, double) - Andreas Petersson
(5) Good luck with that. Remember when the US officially converted to metric and now everyone in the US uses metric all the time? - simon
(4) Oooh don't forget air and water! You think we'd evolve. - Mike Robinson
(1) Astronomy is full of perverse examples. Until 1925, astronomers used the 24 hour clock system with noon as hour zero! - Daniel Earwicker
Actually, the brightest star visible in the sky has magnitude -26.8. It's name is Sol. Ignoring that, Sirius has magnitude -1.5. - Chromatix
[+9] [2009-04-15 12:17:29] Baltimark

An abacus [1].


Really? You use it? - Blorgbeard
(1) Despite being under forty, I own a couple of slide rules, and occasionally bang off rough calculations on them. Mostly to freak out those younger still, but... - dmckee
Very useful for pencil-and-paper role-playing games. - Loren Pechtel
[+8] [2009-04-15 08:32:30] Tim Post

Edlin [1] .. I have a DOS 3.3 box that is (still running) a dial-up bulletin board system.

We're not even going to get into the compiler.

If confronted with this later, I will deny it and claim my Google OpenID was compromised.


It was compromised. - Joshua
I used Edlin once in 1990, and immediately gave it up on the grounds that it was hopelessly outdated. I think even the folks at Bletchley Park would have snorted contemptuously at Edlin. - MusiGenesis
[+8] [2009-04-15 14:01:47] aintnoprophet

Windows 2000 and lots of Windows batch files.

Oh, and Internet Explorer 6.

[+8] [2009-04-22 12:25:08] anchorpoint

The Lynx [1] browser. Good for testing the text flow of web pages, and also good for testing site-usability for impaired people.


(3) Lynx is neither obsolete nor embarrassing. When in SysAdmin mode, I insist on having it on all machines, because sooner or later I'll be at a console with X and everything else broken and reading the device driver vendor's documentation... written in HTML. - kmarsh
Hehe, well last release is over 2 years old and it was initiated in 1992. I'd say it's pretty obsolete for mainstream usage, and embarassingly out of date. But I agree it's a super tool for getting stuff done through console. Found a bit hard to get an SSL-compatible version though, but I managed in the end. - anchorpoint
Always a good idea to have lynx around, even if it's just for emergencies, it doesn't matter how long it's been since the last update, if it works and it's only there for a minority of situations where the choices are very limited(command line browser? I can think of 4, only 1 of which is likely to be installed on all machines). - scragar
[+8] [2009-10-13 00:39:08] MusiGenesis

Paint. It still does only what I really need from a graphics program and no more.

Paint is a great program to draw in. Just don'tuse it for 3D graphics. - tomjen
I would if I could. :) - MusiGenesis
[+7] [2009-04-15 08:17:10] Adrian Grigore

Paper for UI prototyping. It really works surprisingly well!

(4) It dont thing paper for UI prototyping is obsolete. I think it is important to use paper in the early phases. Very easy to grasp, and the details are not that important. (colors/font etc) - ThorHalvor
(3) I thought paper for UI prototyping was a best practice! - jmucchiello
I really don't think it's obsolete either. But still, paper is an old technology, isn't it? - Adrian Grigore
We stand by our origami prototyping method. It's the best. - VirtuosiMedia
(1) I agree, there is no better way to prototype 3D user interfaces. - Adrian Grigore
[+7] [2009-04-15 08:37:39] Unsliced

By definition, anything still being used is not obsolete, but in terms of deprecated processes, we still have some Windows/DOS batch files knocking around - they still work and we don't have the time or inclination to rebuild them solely to have a newer technology achieve exactly the same result.

[+7] [2009-08-26 13:31:54] Ryan McGeary

XML [1]. This technology is over-engineered. It's too verbose. It's led to numerous unnecessary standards and specifications that waste thousands of man-hours everyday (e.g. WS-*). Out-dated? If not now, it will be soon.


[+6] [2009-04-15 14:21:22] eKek0

Borland (Turbo) Pascal 3.02

(4) dude, time to enter the 90's... embarcadero gives 5.5 away as a free download. - Wouter van Nifterick
[+6] [2009-04-15 14:29:20] elbaid

Windows Me [1]! The power of being above awful limits! With the perfect blue on my screen!


Oh the horror! I still remember at least 5 BSODs everyday! Horrible memories >_< - hasen
I was using ME up until 2006. Surprisingly, I never once had any BSODs... however, I left it running one night and the hard disk died. That's when I switched to XP. - Corey
why? why? why? why? why? - johnc
[+6] [2009-04-15 15:54:32] David Koelle

3.5" floppy disks...

I used one the other day when I needed to run a bootable memory test on a computer.

Today's computers usually boot from USB drives. :) - Macke
Obsolete? Try installing XP with a SATA drive without one! - Loren Pechtel
[+5] [2009-04-15 07:35:57] Shoban

ASP ..we have 150+ applications and 30,000+ webpages in the intranet using ASP ;-(

The application works fine... So what is the need for upgrade -> Business

I would work out a business case on maintaince costs v developer/tester time. That should shock any busienss manager.. - littlegeek
I have tried many times and failed ;-) BTW your website in your profile does not open. Gives me an error. - Shoban
I think if you work on a business case you'd fail to success on money wise :) - dr. evil
[+5] [2009-04-15 07:36:47] wds

vi (well, gvim). But only because nobody seems to have been able to come up with something more decent.

I don't think it's embarrassingly obsolete - Ronny Brendel
(16) Vim is not obsolete. - Luc M
okay it's not obsolete. The point is it's so old that you'd think someone would've come up with something better. I'd posit they haven't. - wds
(2) It's perfect, no one can come up with something better. - spatz
Any of the GUI text editors are superior, IMO. - DisgruntledGoat
DisgruntledGoat - while I hate to argue with one's choice of development tool the fact that Vim is small, runs everywhere and can do pretty much anything those big fancy IDEs can do is pretty hard to ignore. Also there's GVim (for Windows too!) so the "no GUI" isn't really an argument. - Cfreak
[+5] [2009-04-15 14:10:34] Eduardo Molteni

Visual Basic 3.0. It works surprising well in Windows XP, but not in Windows Vista.

alt text [1]


(5) the secret weapon in any real hacker's arsenal. - Tom
It was the first GUI programming environment I ever used, as a kid. Wow. - Sijmen Mulder
Doesn't it actually dump your code in the exe file as plain text and then interpret on the fly? - lhahne
Wow, I got started programming on VB3. It didn't even have classes, so I have no idea how I did anything with it. I remember using arrays a lot, and writing lots of code to delete rows by copying subsequent rows one element back and then Re-dimming. - MusiGenesis
I'm still maintaining one major system made in VB3, once you embrace the constraints, it is amazing what you can do. - Eduardo Molteni
[+4] [2009-04-15 07:13:26] mouviciel

Unix desk calculator: dc [1]. It is very helpful for arithmetic operations in Bourne shell (sh, not bash) scripts.

Unix editor: ed [2]. Helpful for editing in place when your flavour of sed [3] doesn't have the adequate option. Helpful also on very dumb terminals which do not even have an ESC key.

Postscript, because it is easier than PDF to programmatically generate or to edit with a text editor.


You realize that none of these are actually obsolete, right? Scripting is still broadly used and works well where the overhead of a perl or python is too much. Stream editing is unusual these days, but when you need it you need it, and Postscript can do things PDF cannot. - simon
dc is really cool! Indispensabel, for example, in expressing Gigabytes in 4,8, or 16k pages. People think you're a magician, when you type echo "123 1024 * 1024 * 4 / p" | dc at the prompt ... - Ingo
I know your talking about SH, but in bash you can do "${{operation}}" there: ${{1+1}} = 2. Or, my personal favourite, "python -c 'x=1+1;print(x)'" :-) - Lucas Jones
(1) Unless you really love reverse polish notation, you can use bc instead of dc: echo "123 * 1024 * 1024 / 4" | bc - skoob
@skoob - rpn gives me a woodie. - xcramps
+1 for PostScript - Xepoch
[+4] [2009-04-15 07:39:02] Nuno Furtado

Java 1.4 and WL 8.1.5, also we have just been warned that SVN is forbidden and we will need to migrate back to VSS. Lovely don't you think?

Edit: to clarify I work as a service provider, I work for a public institution implementing several community requirements. Though I do agree that what they are paying me is hardly enough to endure all this crap....

Tell them to bugger off. - ConcernedOfTunbridgeWells
You definitely need another job. - Tim Büthe
I'd just lie and say that since Microsoft dropped Java, they have made it hard to interoperate a Java development environment with VSS and some other manager-scare speak. Bet any .NET people in your company are on 3.5 already as well, why is Java held back to 5 year old standards? - JeeBee
Any company that bans subversion/git/anything but VSS from use is not worth the salary for the frustration incurred while working there. - Chris
[+4] [2009-04-15 08:03:55] RED SOFT ADAIR

We still manage our bug reports in a homegrown database written in dBase [1] IV.

And I couldn't live without batch files in Windows (effectively being DOS-BatchFiles).


[+4] [2009-04-15 13:39:49] akauppi

The C++ << operator for output.

And this is obsolete how? - rlbond
[+4] [2009-04-15 16:58:11] vartec

Midnight Commander.

[+4] [2009-04-16 08:41:35] George

Microsoft Access 2000. Fortunately soon partly to be replaced by ASP.NET ;)

[+4] [2009-06-12 18:11:51] jalf

SMTP. Of course I don't have much choice if I want to send emails, do I? But come on, a standard that uses a goddamn 7-bit character set?

And it wouldn't be far-fetched to add IRC (the RFC doesn't even bother to specify an encoding!) or HTML to the list.

[+4] [2009-08-26 18:47:37] Herms

Java 1.1 to support the Microsoft JVM, for those 40% or so of our customers who refuse to upgrade.

[+3] [2009-04-15 08:33:13] Wayne

Batch files, many Unix tools, CGI.

Which unix tools would count as obsolete or deprecated? - Unsliced
@Wayne probably couldn't even install Unix. - xcramps
[+3] [2009-04-15 10:04:14] George Jempty

SSI: Server-side includes. They are a universal (at least on Apache) templating system, are remarkably fast, and there's a work-around for not being able to natively create arrays. Return JSON objects/arrays as a string, and let the client do the work.

[+3] [2009-04-15 12:06:29] Steve Claridge

Borland Kylix.

Badly implemented and now unsupported.

I work on a web site on which Kylix has been used to build a bunch of libraries that are called from a scripting language. A bit like a web site running PHP calling its C libraries - only is a proprietary scripting language and Kylix libs.

(1) I am so, so sorry. - Gabe Moothart
[+3] [2009-04-15 14:22:35] Pascal Martel

Cobol... Though some at my office might say it'll never be obsolete.

[+3] [2009-04-15 14:47:49] Mark Rendle

Centura Team Developer 1.5.1, circa 1998, which was never officially supported on Windows XP and uses 16-bit ODBC to talk to SQL Server 2008. It's a testament to Microsoft's backward compatibility efforts that it runs at all on Vista 32-bit.

[+3] [2009-04-16 14:48:52] silverArc

HD-DVD player. can't afford a blu-ray now. but upscaling on regular dvd's works great. And I do have 10 HD-DVD titles.

[+3] [2009-04-16 15:12:42] MattC

Java webapps still in Model 1 architecture.

For the uninformed, that means I have a lot of servlets with boatloads of "out.println" calls to generate the HTML.

[+3] [2009-08-26 18:36:28] Bob Somers

Surprised nobody said this already...


Our entire testing automation infrastructure is built on Tcl. Tons and tons of libraries, scripts, etc. would all need to be converted if we moved to another language. We're starting to dart our eyes towards Perl, but quickly refocus on Tcl since it's what we have.

Oh, if only we could use a modern scripting language like Python or Ruby. Big corporations move slowly.

[+2] [2009-04-15 07:20:50] rahul

Visual Studio 1.0

(1) It was a surprising good compiler in the 16 bit era, although you'd probably want 1.52c if you need a 16 bit compiler today. - MSalters
This can't possibly be true! If so, I'm amazed you haven't committed sepuku by now. - Boydski
[+2] [2009-04-15 08:03:26] ConcernedOfTunbridgeWells

I use fetchmail, [1] postfix, [2] procmail [3] and mutt [4] for my email. Until just a few years ago I used to use elm [5]. I have something like 1 GB of Unix mailbox files going back around 15 years and have not gotten around to migrating them.

This is a legacy system that dates from my days of dial-up Internet connectivity and I have been procrastinating about migrating it for five years or so. This has been a bit of a PITA [6] since around 2004 when HTML formatted email got very popular all of sudden. Being text-based, elm and mutt don't really do a good job of handling it.


[+2] [2009-04-15 14:15:02] chaos

The LPC programming language. [1]


Great language for what it was designed for. - WW.
[+2] [2009-04-15 14:17:59] Chrisb


Visual Basic 6.0. Complete with purchased controls that we don't have the disk for anymore, and whose company has been out of business for years. We have two old applications that are still in production, which I refuse to update at all. If we ever lose this one box that the components are installed on, we are probably screwed.

Lotus Domino R5. My first foray into programming. We build dozens of applications on this platform, and have spent millions trying to get off of it. There are still a dozen or so applications in use.

Microsoft Visual SourceSafe (VSS). We have an OLD version of VSS, which I am working on replacing currently.

Old Java executable JARS. We have a smattering of scheduled tasks that point to old Java JARS, which require long deprecated versions of the platform.

That is all I can think of at the moment.

[+2] [2009-04-15 14:24:45] Mark

PowerBuilder 6.5, Sybase Adaptive Server Anywhere 9, Visual Basic 6.0 , Visual C++ 6.0, Windows batch files (much of my build process depends on them), ArrayList in C#.

[+2] [2009-04-15 14:49:57] plobnop

I'm with Artelius. Pen/Pencil & Paper. Sometimes its far easier and faster to get an idea down on paper. Then, if you have to make it pretty, you can redo it on the computer. Very often I sketch out relationships and structure before I begin to code.

[+2] [2009-04-15 15:01:26] Jeff

vi .. and its derivatives Vim and gvim ..

(5) So what's out of date about that? - David Thornley
David Thornley: seconded - belgariontheking
He probably means that it doesn't have real GUI :D - majkinetor
it's pretty old. but not embarrassing at all - hasen
(1) I'd like to see an editor olympics, wherein a set of basic editing tasks are described, and everyone needs to do what is required and ide/gui/emacs/notepad fans are required to complete these tasks on a basic installation. Versus a good vi guy. You'd lose your ass, @Jeff. Yeah, vi requires an above-room-temperature IQ. But maybe even expecting that is not PC these days. - xcramps
[+2] [2009-04-15 16:46:03] belgariontheking


It doesn't matter what version it is, it's all horrible. And the Solaris servers we have here are completely borked installations, so you can just imagine how much fun I have day to day here.

Any system that requires a human to write XML just to get perfectly complete and functional shell code to work should be banned. No wonder they were going under and sold out. - kmarsh
(1) Solaris ain't all that bad... compared to AIX or HP-UX ;) - Ville Laurikari
Sun had a lot of really smart people working for them. Some of the stuff Solaris was able to do is amazing. @belgariontheking, are you a Windows guys, perchance? @kmarch, huh? Shell code, XML, huh?? WTF are you talking about? - xcramps
@xcramps yes I am a Windows guy for desktops/laptops and for *NIX servers I prefer linux. I have no idea what kmarsh is talking about either. - belgariontheking
[+2] [2009-05-13 20:46:33] Garrett

I have an old ENIAC at home that I haven't had a chance to take to Goodwill. I still use it as a highly effective paperweight though.

[+2] [2009-05-13 21:09:13] Charles Faiga

Still using dBase [1] III to support legacy code.


[+2] [2009-08-26 13:45:27] voyager

I'm surprised, and a bit jealous:

  • Windows 2000

[+2] [2009-08-26 14:07:41] LiamGu

Classic ASP [1]


[+2] [2009-08-26 14:27:01] DisgruntledGoat

Paint Shop Pro 7

I'm now using it on Linux! The two main features I like:

Line drawing tool: it's the quickest, easiest-to-use one I've ever used. No other program I've tried does this well. Version 8 of PSP changed it to work like Flash/Photoshop where you have to use paths.

Edge preserving smooth: incredible for smoothing out cartoony images. If you have a JPEG image it will essentially remove the artifacts from it. Never found another tool like it.

in photoshop and gimp, use the shift key to make a 'line drawing tool' - Shawn Leslie
@Shawn: It's not the same. It's difficult to describe, you just have to use PSP to see how much better it is. - DisgruntledGoat
[+1] [2009-04-15 09:32:50] chburd

Apache Axis [1] 1. It is full of bugs and really limited.

It is deprecated by Axis2, which has only the name in common with Axis1 : total API rewrite. I gave up the migration after 3 weeks of tears.


[+1] [2009-04-15 11:49:41] Jim T

We're still using the DB-Library API [1] to communicate with a Microsoft SQL Server [2] 2000 database ...


[+1] [2009-04-15 12:46:50] Rad

The good old pencil!

How is that obsolete? - jalf
[+1] [2009-04-15 13:01:56] Ken Burkhardt

Classic ASP & Visual Basic 6.0.

We don't seem to get the budget or time to migrate fast enough...

[+1] [2009-04-15 13:43:51] Gulzar Nazim

Office 2000 and Visual Basic 6.0.

[+1] [2009-04-15 14:16:44] Anthony Rizk

Windows Vista

Wait - what?

(4) Hey, I love my vista laptop. Although I have all default vista settings reversed to their sane "not recommended" counter parts. - hasen
(1) This one deserves 100 upvotes. My (least) favorite thing about Vista is the fact that despite doing everything in my power to make my Windows Explorer windows use Details mode always and everywhere, once in awhile windows randomly come up in Medium Icons mode. This drives me berserk. - MusiGenesis
[+1] [2009-04-15 14:34:11] John Munsch

We have existing servers running on WebLogic 4.5 (not even the last service patch either) and Java 1.1.7. The PAIN!

ouchies, I feel your pain - wds
[+1] [2009-04-15 15:20:55] sykora

Turbo C/C++, from Borland.

17 years old and hopelessly standards non-compliant, but I'm using it because my school forces me to.

[+1] [2009-04-15 15:57:27] Zee

I have a really really old calculator sitting on my desk. It has the roll of paper and everything. Very useful.

[+1] [2009-04-15 17:22:04] Nicolas Dorier

My mega drive with sonic !

[+1] [2009-04-16 01:31:54] Huntrods

I'm not sure that it "should have been replaced", but I still have my working copy of Brief [1] (the DOS editor) and still us it quite regularly.

Note - I'm referring to the version produced by Underware (the original maker), and NOT the P.O.S. version that Borland put after buying them up - prior to killing it.

I spent a lot of time in the mid-80's learning the macro language, and made a lot of really useful macros for it - and still use many of them today under Windows XP (in the command window).



[+1] [2009-04-19 17:00:24] ndr

AppleWorks 6.0 on System 7 [1], inside the Basilisk II Macintosh emulator on my Linux laptop.

Beats OpenOffice at speed, reliability, and pretty much everything else.


That does not bode well for OpenOffice. - FlySwat
I'm not sure if this is a rave for AppleWorks or a rant against OpenOffice. Either way, ow. - Beska
[+1] [2009-04-21 14:56:33] Marcus Leon

Tandem [1]


[+1] [2009-04-22 00:10:19] Snazzer

Delphi 4. Our software still uses it, and it's too much work to retool it in anything else.

It makes you appreciate what you have nowadays. Probably the only thing worse would be older versions of Borland C++ builder, a horrible amalgamation of Delphi and C++.

[+1] [2009-05-01 12:33:01] Damo

Flatfile EDI.



The Shipping Industry is still thinking about using XML. Thinking veeeeery slowly.

[+1] [2009-05-03 06:09:06] Precipitous

Comment on VBScript post above ... (new here, can't comment yet) and the general (ongoing) sorry state of scripting on Windows.

For my occasional scripting needs, I use VBScript, and it is absolutely obsolete. It can't natively communicate with newish .NET stuff without a COM layer - and we fled to .NET to avoid COM. However, like batch files and rain on Saturdays, it's always there. I also use a lot of batch files and, strangely, enjoy it much more than VBScript.

A batch file knows it's obsolete, and revels in it. Batch transcends obsolete to venerability.

PowerShell [1] is theoretically a replacement. All the technical pieces are in place, it's fast and potent ... but few people can stand looking at it long enough to learn it. ("-gt", what were they thinking?).

JScript 8 could be a replacement, but someone forgot that scripting languages ought to be dynamic - Jscript 8 needs compilation as far as I can see.

I'm pushing my team / company to embrace IronPython and DLR in general. You can get your old COM, your newish WMI, your .NET, and get the immediate gratification that "scripting" should provide. I want to script IronPython, moving anything heavy off to C# libs. That's the dream ... the reality is that I know everyone can use JScript / VBScript / batch out of the box. Makes a guy want to switch to Unix.


Figured I would help you get to the comment threshold. Thanks for adding to the conversation. - Mr. Will
[+1] [2009-05-13 20:19:52] Justin Ethier

Visual Basic 6.0 and PowerBuilder 10.

[+1] [2009-05-13 20:33:59] Scottie T

Still using Fortran 77, and not just running legacy code, but implementing new features. Recently, I integrated with some auto-generated code from MATLAB/Simulink. Many people in the scientific computing realms still use old, but fast languages.

(1) And they're really fast. Elegant solutions in more "modern" languages still can't keep up. I don't care for Fortran (anymore), but you have to give it it's due. Nothing does math faster. Nothing. - xcramps
[+1] [2009-05-13 20:42:41] Mr. Will

Microsoft SQL Server [1] 2000, though we are slowly migrating to 2005...

Until early last year our Java source was running against JDK 1.3, but I got us up to 1.6.


[+1] [2009-05-13 21:35:57] Matt Poush

HyperCard and Macintosh System 6.

[+1] [2009-05-28 08:03:32] james woodyatt

C89 [1]. I'm sure if I look for it, I'll find some awful K&R crawling horror lurking somewhere in this pile. Better not go there.


[+1] [2009-08-26 13:28:15] ferdley

REXX [1]. I still use it for small text parsing tasks. I have yet to find a replacement for the extremely powerful stem variables in any other language.


[+1] [2009-08-26 13:30:12] Jeff

Visual Basic 6!

Visual Basic 6 Still have some projects using this - edthix
[+1] [2009-08-26 13:40:05] Beska

The Z-machine [1].


[+1] [2009-08-26 14:03:49] ZZ Coder

Slackware Linux [1]. The whole distribution fits on a single floppy.

I built a home automation system years ago. The computer is a 66 MHz 486DX2 PC with 16 MB of memory. It comes with some special hardware so it's too much trouble to upgrade. Tried new Linux distributions but the machine is not powerful enough to run any of them.


[+1] [2009-08-26 14:12:17] Taylor Leese

Ada [1].


(1) What version? If you are talking Ada 83, I agree (since there have been two revs since then, and another on the way). The newer versions, I'd have to disagree entirely. Ada has stuff that they are just now getting around to putting into the newest C++ standard (eg: real "for" loops), and stuff they are only now starting to consider for future standards (eg: concurrency support). Ada's only "out of date" if you mean ahead of its date. - T.E.D.
[+1] [2009-08-26 14:28:03] caddis

AML [1]

alt text,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-arrow-click,TopRight,35,-76_AA240_SH20_OU15_.gif [2]

and ArcIMS [3].

alt text [4]


AML is certainly obsolete, but I have somewhat fond memories of using it. ArcIMS: every time I load a county govt website and see that telltale IMS progress bar, I run away screaming. - yalestar
[+1] [2009-10-13 00:44:21] Polaris878


Yes, some people still have to program in COBOL

[+1] [2009-10-13 01:12:05] Martin Beckett

Silicon - I mean it's so 1955!

[+1] [2010-05-31 08:16:46] Quagmire

At my previous job, we still used visual studio 2003 / .Net 1.1

[0] [2009-04-15 09:37:55] macropas

FoxPro 2.6 for DOS for one old and large program complex. It's laughable, but it's true. We have no time to reconstruct it using new technologies. Even more laughable fact is that often I wonder at speed of FoxPro, especially in comparison with modern "multitier" systems :)

[0] [2009-04-15 13:10:52] ThomasD

Visual Basic 6.0, Visual C++ 6.0, MUMPS [1] and last but not least Java.


[0] [2009-04-15 13:44:36] Johnno Nolan

Everywhere I go I seem to be maintaining an old Access-VBA application that has been upsized to Microsoft SQL Server [1].


[0] [2009-04-16 15:08:47] Alexander Kahoun

4GL [1]...

We're in an ongoing never ending process to get it all into C#.


[0] [2009-04-19 17:29:17] Ken

C#. It's like going back in time 15 years after using Lisp [1]/ SLIME [2].


[0] [2009-04-20 17:23:32] Bård

VBScript [1] - I should be using PowerShell instead right?


[0] [2009-05-01 12:51:46] Mike

IBM OS/2 version 1.3

[0] [2009-05-13 21:39:27] praxeo

All of our report summaries and charts are produced using Excel VBA. The reason is because our reports were really crappy, and I wanted to make them better and I didn't know how to write code. So I just started googling VBA code and making reports. Now most of our reports for customers are coming from me.

[0] [2009-05-28 07:45:54] joukokar

I myself have always been using the newest technologies as far as I remember, but it was quite a shock when I started working in this "new" company:

Borland C++ 5/6, Visual C++ 6, and most likely some even older ones to follow. Also, applications have to support Windows 98/2000... and no plans to upgrade whatsoever.

Luckily I can use even older Vim [1] to do the actual coding part.


[0] [2009-06-12 17:57:50] B0rG

Sybase's APT Workbench - a ncurses-like text based user interface to databases ;-)

[0] [2009-08-26 13:22:21] Stefano Borini

Buckle spring keyboard.

Yes, the machine gun keyboard from IBM. Bought a new one with USB connector and additional keys. Love it. Every single keystroke is a tiny pleasure.

I wouldn't call that out of date. With the springiness it's a technology that won't go out of date until we stop using physical input altogether. - tsilb
[0] [2009-08-26 13:41:53] Pierre-Alain Vigeant

A bank card without a chip. And even if you have one with a chip, nobody have the device to read it.

[0] [2009-08-26 14:04:10] JB King

Hummingbird DM which is I believe at least 5 years old now and should be replaced. This is used for holding support documents and legal documents which has to connect to our new CMS. There is an old COM DLL that is used to handle logging in to Hummingbird as well as getting out the data which can include information about the files as well as the binary data itself.

MCMS 2002 which is our old CMS that is being replaced soon. The company just had other things that took the spotlight so the new CMS project has had its schedule revised at least a few times and there has been a couple rounds of training with only a few people getting it twice. Since this has some of the data from the sites we are replacing, there has been work to get an extraction from it done which can be painful.

Both of these are on Windows 2000 servers that are a few years old and can be a bit fussy to use at times.

[0] [2009-08-26 14:08:39] Bernd Ott

I know some companies which are still using Microsoft Access 97 for their applications. (But they are planning to upgrade to Access 2003 - :-) )

[0] [2009-08-26 14:12:12] Paul Smith

Access 97. And all the VBA that goes with it.

[0] [2009-08-26 14:27:57] Davide

Access 97 and its VBA [1].


[0] [2009-08-26 14:47:46] tsilb

At work, not my fault :)

  • DB2 / zOS / COBOL
  • A unicore laptop w/2GB
  • .NET 2.0
  • VSS 2005
  • VS 2003
  • VS 2005
  • SQL 2000

And sometimes, even... shudder - paper.

[0] [2009-08-26 17:23:07] Richard Pistole

Microsoft Axapta 3. It is painful.

Looks painful to pronounce, let alone use. - Chromatix
[0] [2009-08-27 00:26:34] ariefbayu

MS Access 97! Damn, after several years moved to linux word, I have to go back to this ancient technology in order to maintain an application I made for my uncle during college time :(

[0] [2009-10-13 00:51:35] Ólafur Waage

A von Neumann machine. You too.

[0] [2009-10-13 01:25:13] Larry Lustig

File server databases. I use a number of them (Access, R:Base, DBISAM (Delphi)).

[0] [2009-10-13 01:28:55] Daniel

SourceGear Vault 3.51. We just haven't had time to re-evaulate our source control.

[0] [2009-10-13 02:31:05] Clay Nichols

Frontpage 2003. It does the job.

[0] [2009-10-18 06:01:46] vehomzzz

still use pen and paper to trace outputs of certain algorithms

[0] [2010-01-07 16:02:45] theschmitzer

Microsoft Windows

You just removed a git question about an empty git status after a git push. How did you solve this issue? (I was intrigued and looking into it) - VonC
It was bogus: I had actually committed in another window, so my premise was false. One more push and all was solved. - theschmitzer
[0] [2010-05-31 08:17:03] Ondrej Slinták

We still have to use CVS [1] at work and there seem to be no plans to upgrade at least to SVN. I find it a hellspawn in combination with NetBeans.


[0] [2010-05-31 08:23:13] Cine

I am wondering why noone writes LaTeX, TeX, TeTeX or any of the other variants of this excellent but ancient layout engine :)

I always found it to be the absolutely best tool when you had to make a long text with consistent layout. Even on 2 pages of word/openoffice always messes things up for me, and I spent 10 times as long fiddling with things that doesn't look nice.

[0] [2010-11-23 15:23:45] ROger

and... once it dies, we will revive it. Once revived it will become the wolf of the future. So sorry MS.

[0] [2011-03-16 04:57:36] Neps

MCMS 2002 [1]! We have over a dozen websites running on this platform.

SharePoint has improved over the years, but for simple internet publishing requirements, MCMS does the job.