Microsoft has said it was "surprised" to learn of the Chinese government's decision to ban Windows 8 in government departments.
China said it would not allow state machines to run Windows 8 in order to avoid support issues in the future, similar to Windows XP, which has left millions of machines unsupported around the world.
Instead, China is to focus on developing homegrown Linux systems that can be updated on an ongoing basis.
In response Microsoft told V3 that it was "surprised to learn about the reference to Windows 8" in the notice issued by the government, as it has always worked with governments to try to meet their needs.
"Microsoft has been working proactively with the Central Government Procurement Center and other government agencies through the evaluation process to ensure that our products and services meet all government procurement requirements," it said.
"We have been, and will continue to, provide Windows 7 to government customers. At the same time we are working on the Window 8 evaluation with relevant government agencies."
The move by China is another blow to Microsoft for its Windows 8 platform which has so far failed to gain much traction in either consumer or enterprise markets, as users remain unconvinced by its new look and feel.
Although the end of support for Windows XP has helped grow sales of devices using Windows 8 somewhat, many users are sticking with XP, including the Chinese government which is hoping that firms in the nation can provide security support.
The decision by China to ban Windows 8 comes in the same week that tensions with the US were raised again, after the US filed charges against five Chinese state officials accused of cyber espionage on major US companies.
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