Summary Box: Microsoft CEO stands by Windows

BRIGHT FUTURE: Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer tried to counter perceptions that the software maker’s lucrative Windows franchise is in trouble because people aren’t buying as many personal computers as smartphones and tablet devices reshape technology trends.

THE MESSAGE: Ballmer assured industry analysts during a Wednesday presentation that Windows remains the foundation of Microsoft Corp.’s growth strategy.

THE KEY: Microsoft is working on the most radical makeover of its Windows operating system since 1995. Windows 8 is designed to run on touch-screen tablets as well PCS.

THE PROBLEM: Windows 8 isn’t expected to hit the market for at least nine more months.