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back to article Windows 7 early promise: Passes the Vista test

Windows Vista is better than its reputation, but its reputation is pretty bad. During the press briefing for Windows 7 at Microsoft's Professional Developers Conference (PDC), corporate vice president for Windows product management Mike Nash insisted Microsoft had learned from the Vista experience. Judging by early Windows 7 …

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jim

nail on head

IGnatius T Foobar, that's it in a nutshell. MS has never felt that they need to produce a WIndows product that end users actually "like" or "want". It's always push rather than pull, based on their confidence in their big corporate and OEM license agreements.

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Coat

Microsoft hates Microsoft fan boys

I was a Microsoft fan boy. Love my XP Media Center 2005 PC. Then it came out that people who upgraded to Vista could not tape certain shows on the MCE DVR that comes with Vista Ultimate.

Then it becomes clear that if you want Vista, you will experience a big performance hit (especially people like me, who watch AVI movies on monitor 2, while playing 3D games on monitor 1).

Then Microsoft ditches the sale of Windows XP all together. Apparently they are too stupid to release that if someone likes your stuff, they might not like ALL of it. In this case, Vista is no good... we need XP. Something with performance that doesn't waste electricity rendering ugly new GUI features. UAC? A non-feature, since it doesn't do what it was intended.

In the end, a lot of fans of Microsoft (like myself) are no longer interested... until the day Microsoft shows us that they care about what we are looking for. Right now, they say "TALK TO THE HAND". That's rude. Guess what, they don't care.

It's a shame they turned on their own fans! Now I recommend anything BUT Microsoft... exception: Visual Studio.

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Gates Halo

I like Vista

Plenty of comments about how crap Vista was crap , but its much better now.

Reminded about the guy who had a leg amputated - took a while but he got used to getting around on one leg.

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Silver badge
IT Angle

Point Missed

Vista failed for two major reasons:

1. Microsoft allowed users and OEMs to install it on machines that were vastly underspecced for it (or to take another view, MS included so much bloat in Vista that it failed to perform well even on machines on which MS said it would.)

2. A good deal of existing hardware that was supported by XP could not be used in Vista. I remember that happing in 3.x -> 95 and 9x -> 2000 as well, but back then, the upgrade cycle was much faster (I would have replaced every component in my machine within a year back then. Now, I've been on the same hardware for over 2 years -- and I still don't feel a compelling reason to upgrade.)

There were other problems, but those two took the wind out of Vista's sails very early on, and were the major cause of the perceived performance problems. So a "Vista Test" should check an OS against marginal hardware and to pass, the OS would have to perform well. But you played with it a little bit on a laptop "loaned for the purpose". FAIL

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Gates Halo

I like Vista too

I never had issues with Vista, pre-Sp1 or with Sp1. Sure it dragged a bit on my 1.7 Celeron laptop, but it was low spec anyway. On my new Core2 it flies, Aero and all that jazz. XP is beginning to look old and cartoony like 98SE did when XP came out.

99% of the people dissing Vista have never even used it, amazing how easily people parrot the same uninformed pants. I don't even like MS that much, but I installed SUSE recently and it was crap. I'll take Vista, it recognises my hardware, unlike Linux that pretends to but then you have to arse about with configs all day. Oh but someone on the net said Vista was rubbish, and using Linux makes me look so very clever...so I'll just blindly accept that...not.

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What I don't understand...

Is people complaining about the cost of hardware you need to run MS operating systems, then saying they'll switch to OSX, at which point you're paying for the same hardware, except more. Memory isn't exactly expensive, and a PC with a decent CPU isn't that expensive either. Are people so stupid that they can't see the hypocrisy in what they're saying here?

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No way back

I switched to a Macbook from an HP laptop a few months back. I did so not because I was immensely unhappy with Vista but because I wanted to upgrade to a more powerful machine but wanted more fo a guarantee of stability. Since then an older colleague of mine has done the same and despite a bit of a learning curve neither of us have looked back. OS X IS a more stable environment. And I'm saying that with experience of Vista on a number of different machines. My point is though that although I'm intrigued by this release I would be very wary about switching back. I don't get the sense that this will represent any increase in my productivity. Still it's very early days and I would have to try it out. Problem is will MS's pricing strategy make it very costly for me to legitimately try out the full feature set. My suspicion is probably yes. Looking fwd to Apple's meaner, leaner Snow Leopard...

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@Shakje

The big difference, of course, is that once you've bought an Apple machine your hardware lasts longer. My missus' 1.6ghz G5 runs Leopard (10.5) comfortably, and it originally came with Panther (10.3). In fact some things are actually faster in Leopard on that machine than they were with Panther, thanks to Apple refining and improving their code over the years. How many 1.6ghz PCs would run Vista nicely?

Consider too that Snow Leopard (10.6) will run faster on a machine you buy now than it does with the current version of the OS.

One big plus too, is that OS X tends to run at the same speed after a couple of years of use as it did at first install. There's a big advantage to not having a growing registry, file fragmentation etc. I used to reinstall my Windows machines every six months to avoid too much slowdown. Since moving to Mac I've never needed to do that.

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Flame

@Vista Supporters

"I think that most people just complain about Vista because it's fashionable"

A lot of the people saying they actually *like* Vista tend to be those running multi-Ghz, multi-core machines with a pile of RAM.

Unfortunately there are also a lot of people out there who have been sold machines - particularly laptops - preloaded with Vista - which simply are not useable.

I've seen it, tried it, tried to fix it without spending extra money we can't afford on ram upgrades the machine doesn't really need. Its a scam, so f*ck Microsoft and f*ck their 'channel partners' who participated in this scam.

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Well.. to all those mictosoft PR agents out there

This is being written on a quad core AMD Compaq with 3GB ram and 256MB video card running Vista Home Premium - Basically Ultimate without bitlocker, whatever the hell that is...

I run a development environment and .. It hesitates the mouse while I'm doing stuff.. It keeps interrupting me while I'm working with "helpful" bloody popups or vista nonsense.

I want my machine cycles back! Microsoft are stealing my machines power to do stuff that has nothing to do with what I use the machine for. Network and copying speed are abysmal. I have the latest updates. Only scumbags must work at Mictosoft.

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WTF is this bashing about?

I've never got why there is so much hate for Vista. The only real issues have been OEM's throwing bloat on it, 3 year old PC's didn't have the guts to run it at launch and driver issues.

I just purchased a £500 machine from Dell - quad core with 3Gig of RAM. Runs like lightning. Before that machine I ended up using a P4 3Ghz (NOT dual or quad core!) with 1.5 gig of RAM. It's now hitting it's 5th birthday and it's getting a bit flakey on the hardware, hence the new machine.

A single core P4 3Ghz with a gig of RAM is fine for office users. Letters, web browsing, listening to music etc. That's a 5 year old machine guys.... and it cost £600 when brought.

Vista doesn't need some quad core behemoth with 32Gig of RAM. It runs fine on any mid-range machine built in the last 4 years or so if your a standard home user. Just don't install OEM guff...

And the driver problems were gone mid-2007.

I honestly can't see what other issues people are going on about - it works fine on mid-range hardware that's under 5 years old as long as there's no OEM guff pre-installed and the drivers have been about for a good year or so too....

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Stop

Balance

I actually installed, finally, Vista Home Premium on my "junk" box. It has an AMD Athlon XP 3000+/333, 1.5GB RAM, 7200 PRM Seagate 80GB HDD and a 64MB AGP video card. It actually ran very well. No Aero effects but that was fine. But holee sheet ... Vista takes up more than 14GB of disk space. Not exactly lean and performance oriented in my opinion.

After I turned off all the nuisance stuff (UAC et. al.) and stopped all the visual fade and slide options, it ran very well indeed. But not well enough to keep and learn (relearn?) as much about it as I do XP ... or Ubuntu for that matter.

If it comes pre-installed turn off all the crap and keep it. But as an upgrade to XP it simply isn't worth it. It ran all the programs I like the most with the exception of Nero 6, but CDBurnerXP worked just fine.

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Anonymous Coward

How Fast?

'A single core P4 3Ghz with a gig of RAM is fine for office users.'

ROTFLMOA!

Earth to Steve, come in Steve.

I dream of a 3 GHz machine!

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@David Kelly

That's nothing. I have a six year old 800MHz G4 that came with an OS 9 disc. With the Spotlight indexing service turned off, it runs 10.4 quite nicely. Can't upgrade further only because of the Intel switch. I don't plan to replace it until I actually need software that has no PowerPC version. Yes, the initial cost is high, but when I don't need to pay for another for 8-10 years, the annual cost of ownership is similar to that of a good-quality PC.

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@AC / "How Fast?"

Um, the the first P4 3Ghz chips with HT (the one I have in my "old" box) were launched by Intel in the summer of 2002....

So your telling me that you expect an Operating System launched in 2007 to run fine on chips older than 6 years prior to it's release...?

Earth to Coward, come in Coward...

Welcome to the 21st Century - a 6 year old CPU with a gig or RAM runs Vista fine, and on a £500 box today it flies like you wouldn't believe.

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Jim
Dead Vulture

If you Love Vista, You will Love Windows 7 However if you hate Vista you will hate Windows 7

I have the Pre-Beta make no doubt about it is Vista. In my opinion it is what service pack 2 should bring to Vista. For those of you who don't like Vista's UI, you will not like Windows 7 UI. To put it in the vernacular of American Presidential candidates, You can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig....

Now for the many people who say, "Why all this Vista bashing? For me it's because every major problem in Vista was brought out in the Betas of Vista yet Microsoft chose to ignore them. Microsoft has said on numerous occasion that they have learned from their mistakes with Vista. Now I will admit Microsoft won't be doing this in the upcoming Betas of windows 7. here is a quote from Mike Nash Corporate Vice President, Windows Product Management, Microsoft Corp;

"The next phase for the development team is getting to beta. For Windows 7 this will be a feature complete beta and we expect that to be available to customers in early 2009. Feature complete means that we will not be adding any new features once we get to beta (since they are all there) but will instead focus on fixing bugs that we find in our testing and in feedback that customers give us"

As you can see Microsoft has eliminated the problem of Beta testers complaining about what they don't like in the up coming Windows 7 Betas, the betas are now only for bugs. So if you don't like something it's go away or we don't want to hear that. I hope I'm wrong with this only time will tell....

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Jim
Dead Vulture

Why the Vista Bashing and soon to be Windows 7 bashing

I have the Pre-Beta make no doubt about it is Vista. In my opinion it is what service pack 2 should bring to Vista. For those of you who don't like Vista's UI, you will not like Windows 7 UI. To put it in the vernacular of American Presidential candidates, You can put lipstick on a pig, but it's still a pig....

Now for the many people who say, "Why all this Vista bashing? For me it's because every major problem in Vista was brought out in the Betas of Vista yet Microsoft chose to ignore them. Microsoft has said on numerous occasion that they have learned from their mistakes with Vista. Now I will admit Microsoft won't be doing this in the upcoming Betas of windows 7. here is a quote from Mike Nash Corporate Vice President, Windows Product Management, Microsoft Corp;

"The next phase for the development team is getting to beta. For Windows 7 this will be a feature complete beta and we expect that to be available to customers in early 2009. Feature complete means that we will not be adding any new features once we get to beta (since they are all there) but will instead focus on fixing bugs that we find in our testing and in feedback that customers give us"

http://windowsteamblog.com/blogs/windows7/default.aspx

As you can see Microsoft has eliminated the problem of Beta testers complaining about what they don't like in the up coming Windows 7 Betas, the betas are now only for bugs. So if you don't like something it's go away or we don't want to hear that

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Bronze badge
Gates Horns

Demo?

Obvious old joke, but relevant to the subject...

<<Bill Gates dies in a car crash and ends up in front in front of StPeter@heaven.com.

St. Peter says I don't know what to do with you. You've created many jobs and helped a lot of people in the new electronic age, but you've also been a royal pain to some of our big contributers. I'll tell you what, I'll let you have a look at heaven and hell and choose for yourself.

So St. Peter shows Bill heaven, with the clouds and Angels and harps, and Bill thinks to himself: "OK, as far as it goes."

Then St. Peter shows Bill hell, with scantily clad bathing beauties on a tropical beach with palm trees and Bill thinks to himself: "This is a no-brainer!"

So Bill says to St. Peter: "I'll take hell!"

Two weeks later St. Peter thinks to himself: "I wonder how Bill is doing?"

So he drops by hell and finds Bill chained to a wall, consumed by flames and screaming in agony.

"Where are the bathing beauties, where's the beach?" Cried Bill. "This isn't what you showed me!"

"That", said St. Pete, "was a demo." >>

(Icon, natch).

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Thumb Up

Ribbon is pretty good

I find Ribbon extremely intuitive. If I were sat in front of a computer for the first time, Ribbon would be easier to use than File, Edit, etc menus.

I was afraid I would hate it when I was upgraded to Office 2007 at work, but I find I like it very much.

I wonder when OpenOffice.org will have a Ribbon-like interface to compete.

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Jim

double post

Sorry for the double post, I'm an idiot :)

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This post has been deleted by its author

So is it better than XP

"there should be no downside to Windows 7 over Windows Vista"

but is it better than XP? Windows couldn't get much more downside than Vista.

I read a list of what OS users really want and it is quite right when it states in some place or other "We want an OS that is just that - simple straightforward no frills" or something like that. Dont suppose Windows 7 is anything like that is it?

zzdave

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Anonymous Coward

I've just spent hours in PC world, and other places.

Have you tried to buy a pc without Vista? They won't sell you one, unless you open a business account.

I've just been told "You invalid your warranty on the PC if you install XP on it." by some oddbod in one of their stores.

Consequently, no pc. This is a pity, because I was going to buy four, as I'm doing a house refresh. No XP, no PC.

This is abuse of market position, surely.

It's also a real pity, because there's some total monsters out there these days.

Vista needs a switch to remove UAC, all the stuff that hangs, indexing, search, all those pictures. As was put very well recently, I want a computer that I chose to run media player on, while I'm writing emails, building databases, surfing the web, and writing code. I do not want some kind of funky telephone interface that allows me to do a few thinks like those, badly.

It's a computer first, experimental arty modern communications device second, not the other way around.

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K
Linux

phrase defined?

What does cloud efforts mean?

"..approach makes it seem uninteresting compared to Microsoft's new cloud efforts. ®"

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Oh dear,

My wife has Vista installed on her new Dell machine, and she hates it with a passion normally reserved only for people who abuse cats. (Yes, I know, it is sad).

As I don't have to use Vista, I think that it looks quite pretty. However, I must admit I cannot see any advantage in zapping my XP installation and replacing it with Vista.

My wife's experience with Vista has only served to consolidate that opinion.

It has however made me decide to buy one of those silly netbook thingies that "do" web, words, and spreadsheets with a Linux opsys. If I am going to let something alienate me, it might as well be a cheap alienation! :))

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N
Bronze badge

Vista test, the new gold standard for crapware?

If Vista is the standard, the bar must be fairly low to pass...

Runs for more than 5 minutes without nagging

Takes less than 131 years to copy some files - "48167 Days and 23 hours remaining," as quoted by El Reg

Crashes less than once a day

Tries to impersonate a Mac, note 'tries'

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Why Buy?

Why buy things that are inferior in quality to those you can download for free, such as Fedora?

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