Windows

Don't be misled by these 10 Windows Vista myths

The official consumer launch of Windows Vista has brought with it a great deal of confusion, misinformation, and some fairly ignorant assertions. Windows expert Deb Shinder debunks some of the misconceptions she's been hearing, from exaggerated cost and hardware requirements to feature limitations and compatibility issues.

This article is also available as a PDF download.

Now that Windows Vista has officially launched and is available to consumers, everybody's talking about it. Unfortunately, a lot of what I'm hearing--from both Windows fans and the ABM (Anybody But Microsoft) crowd--needs to be taken with a grain of salt. In many cases, what the information lacks in accuracy, it makes up for in sensationalism. But how do you sort through all the hype and get a real picture of what the new OS will and won't do for you?

In this article, I'll take a look at some of the exaggerations, distortions, and out-and-out untruths I've heard floating around about Vista.

Myth #1: You'll have to buy a new, high-end PC to run Vista

Many in the mainstream media are claiming that to run Vista, you'll almost certainly have to buy a new computer. This myth is undoubtedly being encouraged by hardware vendors, but it's not true. I was able to install Vista on my existing Dell Dimension mid-priced system with no problems, and the existing video card, an ATI x600, runs Aero Glass.

If your computer is older or a low-end machine, you can still probably install and use Vista but you may not get the Aero Glass interface. Although Glass adds a lot of "wow" factor, it's not something that's essential to getting work done. You'll still benefit from Vista's security enhancements, search functionality, and added features. If you do want the Glass look, you still may not need to buy a new system. Instead, you can add RAM to bring your system up to the 1 GB recommended for Glass and install a new video card that supports it.

Another myth I've heard is that only PCI Express (PCIe) video cards support Aero Glass, so if your computer doesn't have a PCIe slot, you're out of luck. That's not true either. Video card vendors have regular PCI cards that will run Glass. I'm running it on a system with a relatively inexpensive GeForce 5200 card with 256 MB of memory in a regular PCI slot.

If you do choose to buy a new PC, you don't need a high-end one that costs thousands of dollars to run Vista. Just a couple of days after the launch, retailers began offering machines preloaded with Vista Home Premium, complete with LCD monitors, for as low as $600.

Myth #2: Vista will solve all your security problems

Microsoft is touting Vista's improved security, but no operating system is perfectly secure (and no OS ever will be). Running Vista doesn't mean you don't still need perimeter firewalls, antivirus protection, and other third-party security mechanisms.

Because much of operating system, including its networking technologies, has been redesigned and new code written, Vista is likely to present some vulnerabilities that weren't in older versions of the OS even as it fixes many that were. This is true of any new software and Vista, despite its focus on security and Microsoft's best efforts, is no exception.

In fact, Microsoft shipped the first critical security update for Vista over a year ago, when it was still in the beta testing stage. It will be just as important with Vista as with any other operating system to ensure that updates are installed regularly. The danger is that novice users, hearing that Vista is more secure, may let their guard down and fail to take the protective measures necessary to prevent attacks, virus infestations, etc.

 


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Myth #3: Vista is no more secure than XP SP2

On the other hand, some of Vista's detractors have been claiming that the new operating system offers no security advantage at all. I've heard computer "experts" on the radio say that Vista is no more secure than Windows XP with Service Pack 2, and an eWeek article last summer went so far as to report that Symantec security researchers were contending that Vista "could harbor a range of vulnerabilities that will make it less secure than previous iterations of Windows."

It's true that, properly updated, Windows XP is a pretty secure OS. But Vista includes a number of new security enhancements that XP doesn't have. For example, User Account Control (UAC) in Vista protects against attacks that rely on elevation of privileges. Internet Explorer 7, when running on Vista, leverages UAC to run in Protected Mode, which keeps Web applications from writing to system folders. IE7 doesn't run in Protected Mode on XP.

BitLocker drive encryption, available in Vista Enterprise and Ultimate versions, provides a way to keep unauthorized persons from accessing sensitive data on a stolen or lost laptop. The Windows Firewall in Vista allows you to block outgoing traffic as well as incoming. Windows service hardening reduces the potential for damage if one of Windows' services is compromised. Vista includes the Network Access Protection client, which allows administrators to restrict computers that are properly updated or don't have antivirus, anti-spyware, or firewalls from connecting to company networks.

Those are just a few of the new security improvements included in Vista.

Myth #4: The only thing new about Vista is the eye candy

Your first impression of an operating system, like your first impression when meeting another person, is often based on appearance. And Vista's appearance does make an impression. With Aero Glass turned on, the transparent window borders, 3 D animations, and other visual effects make it clear (no pun intended) that this is a whole new Windows.

However, the changes to Vista amount to more than just a pretty interface. In addition to the security improvements discussed above, many aspects of the operating system have been reworked to improve usability and provide new functionality. For example:

  • The search capabilities have been greatly expanded, so that you can easily find documents, programs, and other objects, and even run applications, from a single box in the Start menu.
  • New productivity applications are built into Vista, including a calendaring/task list program called Windows Calendar and a new, improved address book called Windows Contacts. Together with Windows Mail (the replacement for Outlook Express), these provide much of the same functionality as Outlook, without the need to purchase Office. There are other new built-in applications, too, such as the Snipping Tool that makes it easy to do a screen capture of any desired area without installing third-party software such as SnagIt.
  • Changes to Windows Explorer make it easier to organize and view your files, with more options. For example, you can see thumbnails of all files (not just graphics) and view their contents in the preview pane without opening them, as shown in Figure A.

Figure A

You can preview files in Windows Explorer without opening them.

Explorer also features automatic horizontal scrolling when needed, and you can select multiple files using check boxes instead of the old method of holding down the [Ctrl] key. Many little things make the user experience less frustrating; for example, when you select to rename a file in Explorer, only the filename is changed; by default the extension remains the same.

These are only a few of the new Vista features that can be enjoyed with or without the Aero Glass interface.

Myth #5: You can't dual boot Vista with another operating system

One of the strangest and most inaccurate statements I heard was that "With Vista, you can't run two operating systems on the same computer like you could in the past." That's news to me, as I'm currently running two computers that dual boot Vista and XP. As with previous versions, a boot menu is displayed when the computer starts, and you can choose either Vista or Previous version of Windows.

Now, it is true that for some reason, on the Boot tab of the System Configuration Utility in Vista, only the Vista operating system shows up even though I can boot into XP from the boot menu. As with XP, the System Configuration Utility is accessed by typing msconfigat the command line. Figure B shows the tool.

Figure B

You can dual boot Vista with another OS, but the other OS doesn't show up in the Boot tab of the System Configuration Utility.

You may also notice that the old boot.ini file, which was used to edit the boot configuration information in Windows NT, 2000, and XP, is missing. Now the boot options are stored in the Boot Configuration Data (BCD) store, and the system is started by the Windows Boot Manager. You use a tool called Bcdedit.exe to change the boot information.

Myth #6: Vista requires (or includes) Office 2007

I recently read an article in a well-respected national publication that, in listing a number of things the author didn't like about Vista, included the new "ribbon bar" in Word. Oops--that's not a Vista feature; it's a feature of Office 2007, which apparently was installed on the Vista machine he was testing.

I've also seen several references to the need to upgrade to Office 2007 when you install Vista. Well, of course you can, but it's by no means a requirement. Office 2003 runs fine on Vista. This bit of misinformation seems to be most often used in articles that inflate the projected cost to deploy Vista; you can make those numbers look higher if you add in the cost of upgrading Office, too.

Also, contrary to the rumor that Microsoft made Vista so open source competitors of its office products won't run on it, I had no problems at all installing and running Open Office, the open source alternative to Microsoft Office, shown in Figure C.

Figure C

You can install the free Open Office software on Vista if you don't want to buy Microsoft Office.

Myth #7: Most old applications and peripherals won't work with Vista

Circulating amongst the FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) being spread about Vista is the idea that upgrading will subject you to all kinds of application incompatibilities. Some programs made for XP, especially those that hook into the kernel, like antivirus programs and some system utilities, won't work with Vista. However, the majority of applications that run on XP will also run on Vista.

In some cases, you may need to install or run older programs in Compatibility mode (right-click the program file, select Properties, and click the Compatibility tab to select compatibility options) and/or run the program as an administrator for it to work properly.

You don't have to figure out most compatibility issues for yourself. Vista comes with the Program Compatibility Assistant, which can detect what changes need to be made to run a program and resolve conflicts with UAC that may be preventing a program from running correctly. It runs automatically when it detects an older program that has compatibility issues. You can also use the Program Compatibility Wizard, a tool that you run manually from the Control Panel | Programs and Features section (in native view).

There have also been many reports about hardware peripherals, especially printers and scanners, that don't work with Vista. It's true that some hardware vendors were slow to provide Vista drivers during the Vista beta testing period. By the time Vista launched to the consumer market, though, many hardware drivers were included on the installation DVD and many more will be made available in the next few months.

My older HP OfficeJet G55 had no problems working with Vista, and if you peruse the list of supported printers (Control Panel | Printers | Add A Printer Wizard), you'll see that Vista supports a large number of printers from HP, IBM, Brother, Canon, Citizen, Dell, Epson, Fujitsu, Konica, Kyocera Mita, Lexmark, Minolta, NEC, Oki, Panasonic, Ricoh, Samsung, Sharp, Sony, Xerox, and other major printer vendors.

Myth #8: You have to buy a Premium version of Vista if you have a dual core machine

There was initially some confusion over the specification that Vista Home Editions support only a single processor. Some folks took this to mean that that version of Vista wouldn't run on dual core machines.

Dual core CPUs do contain two processors--but they're combined on one chip or die. This is called chip-level multiprocessing and it's different from having two separate physical processors installed on the same machine. Even though a dual core machine will show the activity of two processors in Windows performance monitoring tools (see the two separate graphs for processor activity in Figure D), Microsoft's definition of "processor" refers to the number of physical CPUs, not the number of cores. (This policy is laid out in "Multicore Processor Licensing.")

Figure D

Dual core machines show the activity of two processors in performance monitoring tools.

In fact, all versions of Vista will run on a machine with multiple processors installed--but Home Basic and Premium will recognize and use only one of the processors.

Myth #9: You won't be able to play ripped music in Vista

Have you heard about the horrors of Vista's DRM (Digital Rights Management)? Some people have implied that it will prevent you from playing any music or movie files unless you download and pay for them online. Others are speculating that even the media you do buy may be blocked.

Interestingly, the people who are spreading this one all seem to be folks who have never used Vista (and, according to many of them, never will). The real story: I have no problem playing music files that were ripped from CDs on Windows Media Player 10 or in Vista's Windows Media Center application. Yes, I legally own the CDs, but Vista has no way of knowing that. All of the media that imported from my XP Windows Media Center computer, including recorded TV programs, played without a problem.

For a more thorough discussion of content protection in Vista, see this article from CreateDigitalMusic.com.

Myth #10: Vista costs a lot more than XP

Ever since pricing for the various editions of Vista was announced, I've heard a lot of griping and grumbling about how much it costs. Windows XP came in only two versions that were available at retail: Home, which was priced at $199 for the full package and $99 for the upgrade, and Professional, which was priced at $299 for the full package and $199 for the upgrade.

Vista gives you many more options:

  • Home Basic: $199 full, $99 upgrade
  • Home Premium: $239 full, $159 upgrade
  • Business: $299 full, $199 upgrade
  • Ultimate: $399 full, $259 upgrade

Everyone seems to be focusing on the price for Ultimate, but if you look at the versions that are directly comparable to the two versions of XP (Home Basic and Business), you'll see that they cost exactly the same as their XP counterparts did five years ago.

Home Premium includes the Windows Media Center and Tablet PC functionality, along with Aero Glass and extra applications such as Windows Movie Maker, Windows Meeting Space, Mobility Center, and Scheduled Backup. Windows XP Media Center Edition and Tablet PC Edition weren't available at retail; you could only get them preinstalled by the OEM.

Ultimate Edition also includes Media Center and Tablet PC, along with business extras such as BitLocker encryption, Remote Desktop, and Windows Complete Backup and Restore. In fact, Ultimate includes all the home entertainment features of Home Premium plus all the corporate goodies of Business and Enterprise editions, and the upgrade to Ultimate costs only $59 more than the XP Pro upgrade while offering a great deal more functionality.

About

Debra Littlejohn Shinder, MCSE, MVP is a technology consultant, trainer, and writer who has authored a number of books on computer operating systems, networking, and security. Deb is a tech editor, developmental editor, and contributor to over 20 add...

385 comments
vietnam
vietnam

im sticking with Xp till a newer version of Windows OS comes out, screw Vista XD

VAR1016
VAR1016

What's this about dual core processors? I read in this article that Vista Home premium uses only one of the processors in a dual core chip. I bought a new computer with a dual core chip and Vista Home premium installed. Does this mean my machine is not working at full capacity? Paul

chuckdarwin
chuckdarwin

Man, I'm not going to TOUCH Vista. Micro$oft has released one inferior, buggy OS after another since it bought QDOS from Seattle Computer Products in 1980. XP SP2 is the best thing they've ever developed, and I'm not going to ask my poor, confused userbase to upgrade until M$ gets Vista working to the same level that XP SP2 does currently (85% or so). And $399 is highway robbery for an OS, no matter what it does. For $399, it had better bear my children instead of merely 'looking cool'.

OKDOKI
OKDOKI

I have to disagree with some if not most of these 10 items, but the on that i do want to expand on is the software compatibility. As a pre-tester and now an owner of Vista, 90% of all my applications and games, does not run on Vista, thats why i also use the dual booting for Vista and XP.even running it in compatibility mode, it still refuses to run it. therefore i am waiting a full 2 years before i completetly switch over to Vista, by then a SP1 at leats would have to be released. secondly, the statements they made about dual booting, they considered the fact, that you working of one HDD and Vista was installed first on the system. without a vast knowledge of computers, the everyday end user wont be able to install a second OS as in the old days, where it was a lot easier. (end users generally don't know about partitioning a HDD and so forth)

grewcockd
grewcockd

Hi, I have Ultimate running on a 'Bodged' up machine, and as one would expect from that, Vista is unstable, it crashes at least 3 times a day(usually BSOD 1000008e)!! What is annoying is that the Vista diagnostic system has no real idea why the system has crashed! It is not much better than Windows 3.1 was at diagnostics. It sometimes tells me that the 'Hardware is bad', but it doesn't know what, could be RAM, Graphics, or MoBo??? or, The Graphics drivers need updating, or that I need to reduce the grahics acceleration. I would have thought by now that if MS were serious about OS's, they would be working to make tham as stable a Linux? I Have had Kubuntu running on another 'cobbled' up PC and it hasn't crashed since I installed it 3 Months ago, it just works! If Vista was as good as MS say it is then it should be 'self healing' and be virtually uncrashable?? An operating system which has been 'Built from the ground up' as MS say Vista has, should not crash because of 'iffy' hardware, It should be able to identify the failing bit and either fix it (if it's caused by firmware or drivers) or disable the element that is failing, then report this to the user, who can then take appropriate action. BSODs with esoteric explanations and abbreviations and strings of numbers is just not acceptable in this day and age!!

rpmcestmoi
rpmcestmoi

No, not as bad as you have been told, but still a build on build on build on a platform that needs to die! In a world where Apple lives it takes a lot more than Vista to Wow the intelligent.

kaicremata
kaicremata

THE TASKBAR AT THE BOTTOM SLIPS TO THE LEFT, OPEN PROGRAMS PILE UP ON EACH OTHER, I LOSE ALL MY RIGHT HAND SHORTCUTS, CANT ACCESS A PROGRAM, CANT WHEN I ENTER THE START PROGRAM LOAD ANY NEW PROGRAMS, ITS A TRAIN WRECK...I HAVENT EVEN STARTED ROLLING YET, AND THIS IS A BRAND NEW DELL DIM 9200 DUAL PENTIUM E6600 WITH 2 GIG OF DRAM AND NVIDIA 256 CARD. I FEELING ALOT LIKE LINUX THESE DAYS, FOR THE LEARNING CURVE (I HAVE NEVER USED IT) AT LEAST ILL END UP WITH SOMETHING I WANT GOOD LUCK GUYS - VISTA USERS NEED IT

hassan_125_9
hassan_125_9

Most peoples says Windows Vista doesn't support dual-boot, but it can. I myself is using two OS. Windows XP & Vista. Both works great. Best solution for this is you must have two partitions. You can even have three OS on single system. Windows Vista, XP & Linux.

Jhaks
Jhaks

The article is correct in all its points but I thought it wasn't to clear or convincing on two big points. Security and Vista not just being xp with eye candy. There's way to much though to talk about right here so I suggest looking at Wikipedia for a starting point. Look into sub articles for more information. They have done a lot of re architecting and added a lot of good features under the hood. Here are some examples of improvements: New and improved faster network stack. The audio stack has been overhauled for greater fidelity (I think they use 32 bit floating point now instead of 16), extensibility and more stability (pushed up into user mode more) Many driver systems where pushed further into user mode to reduce instability caused by faulty drivers. For example a printer no longer needs to have kernel access (if I remember correctly). Yay BSOD goes bye bye! More stability features like deadlock prevention and resolution. New kernel transaction manager to provide atomic operations on files, groups of files, files over network, and the registry preventing system corruption and inconsistency. New media system that places audio and video at very high thread priority (above real time) so you don't get studder while other CPU intensive stuff starts up. Readyboost and superfetch which have already been shown through various tests to improve app load times a lot. Power options that let you configure and tweak your system exactly the way you want. Everything from PCI express power to Wireless power. Sleep that keeps programs in memory but shuts down rest of computer to super conserve energy but still jump back in a matter of seconds. Not to mention it protects your session by transfering memory into hard disk too. Automatic volume shadow copy is a very nifty technology that gives you snapshots of files in time but is very efficient with disk space since it only stores changes in the data. How about WPF and .net 3? Uber cool platform to create really slick apps. I think I've rambled on enough but this is just off the top of my head. I've read a bunch more features too. Plus there are a bunch of security features under the covers too. Wiki page: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Security_and_safety_features_new_to_Windows_Vista Should be familiar if you've taken a security class. Anyways there's much more beyond what the media portrays so go out there and explorer the information.

apotheon
apotheon

That's exactly what it means -- assuming these statements are accurate. I haven't personally looked into the capabilities of the Home line of Vista, so I cannot either confirm or deny it, but I have no reason to doubt the article.

opensource?bah
opensource?bah

Well, I've got Vista running on my Laptop and my Desktop, I also have an iMac G5, but I don't see the reason to put any Softee OS, with the exception of apps such as Office 2004 for Mac. I've found Vista very stable with more features, including the Eye Candy, than XP Pro SP2. Of course I'm using the Ultimate vesion, and it does cost $399, but Home editions are cheaper, Your post doesn't seem to mention these. Be accurate if you send out a post. It helps, and misinformation such as you have, ala $399, doesn't mention Upgrade editions, Home editions, all under the $399 you post. Certainly XP OS2 is good, but Vista is better. I have a feeling you've never used Vista and have a biased opinion based on information that's not right. Get a Home edition or get the upgrade version.

TechRep
TechRep

Has it ever been brought out that MS may have used their new and improved Visual Basic.net, drag and drop application builder to create Vista? The Visual Basic program is being executed in XP environment with drag and drop ease...Hence you have big bloated bugs. Anyone who has used Visual Basic to create a simple window with, "Hello World" displayed, can tell you that the compilation version creates 6 meg+ of bloated EXE file. MS/Ballmer try hard to make the greatest OS in history with bloated bugs to start. Bugs are bound to be even more bloated by the time they drag and drop it out to you. Why do we sit around wasting time talking about it. Everyone should know by now what is going on is a joke. Why not simply support what works for you and quit giving money and time to bloated bugs?

A_Selby
A_Selby

... most Apple users I know are not very interested in how their OS does what it does so beautifully. They are just happy that it does it. Now I'm not saying that they are UNintelligent, but many of them aren't applying their intelligence to what makes their OS tick. Linux users do it because they want to know. Windows users find out what makes their OS tick so that they can "customise" it - which is winspeak for "try to make it actually work nicely". MacOS users were lucky that it worked. OSX users can do the Linux thing if they want, and do the Windows thing if they decide that Apple hasn't done exactly what meets their needs. Surely the bad thing about the Mac and its OSes is the cost? Pretty much everything else has been addressed over the years. It was the nicest to use platform 10 years ago and it still is, but if Windows disappeared tomorrow they still couldn't challenge the Linux / Unix market, which is ironic, given that OSX is Unix based. Windows I can defend - it's a very good and very versatile OS for the user that knows it well - but Vista, despite the fact that I was not expecting too much, is disappointing for many of the reasons that the Vista-ites may like to dismiss as "myth". At the moment, if I was buying new hardware for my home, I might buy something with Vista on it and load Suse (which I love, by the way) or really push the boat out and go for a lovely MacBook Pro.

NiklausPfirsig
NiklausPfirsig

Where's the beef in this article or in the comments. Since I know I will be using Vista at work before too long, (Boss's choice, not mine) I am trying to get a jump on what to expect. Bloatware: Software bloat is usually the result of creeping-featurism, sloppy coding and poorly designed APIs. Any feature, however pretty or nice is bloat if you never use it. The power users should have the option of removing the features they find useless. Unfortunately, this is often not allowed on Windows. As for security, Windows has a bad track record in the past. We will see if Vista changes that. Many posters seemed to be intent on uninformed attacks on the Linux, MacOSX and Windows. Seeing a comment from an obvious proponent of Microsoft accussing the Linux camp of "FUD"ing Vista was a somewhat amusing attempt of FUD in its on right. The word "myth" in it's denotative meaning simply refers to a story that is part of a belief system. The connotation of the word "myth" is that the story is untrue due to a lack of understanding of the "true" belief system. All said, the article seemed more or less a defensive diatribe for Microsoft, and only a very few of the comments were enlightening. I thought the comment calling Linux on a PII laptop was especially silly. I once used linux on a 66 Mhz 486 laptop just to run a browser and mail client, for checking email and webbrowsing from the hotel room while on out-of town trips It worked very well. I had $15 invested in the laptop and when it was accidentally destroyed, I didn't care.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

so, a dual core system will still function properly, using both cores.

donburnett
donburnett

If anyone is having trouble with this I suggest they check out a utility called "Vista BOOT Pro"

lostinlodos
lostinlodos

Or, install each OS to a completely separate HD as I did. Eliminate any chance of problems that way, too, with the different drive tables/formats used with the different OSs. I've got 6 OSs on 4 drives, and the booter works fine with them.

dawgit
dawgit

With the Linux, that is. I've been hearing reports of a Vista install destroying Linux or at least parts of it. Does your Vista need to be the Prime OS? -d

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

" Yay BSOD goes bye bye!" -- nope, I bsod'd this one -- granted not from a print driver though "Power options that let you configure and tweak your system exactly the way you want." this is in XP, new is the interface "Everything from PCI express power to Wireless power." If you are talking HW, then it is not Vista, if you are talking SW, PCIe works fine in XP. "Sleep that keeps programs in memory but shuts down rest of computer to super conserve energy but still jump back in a matter of seconds. Not to mention it protects your session by transfering memory into hard disk too." -- this has been around for a long, long time. Maybe it was improved, but it is not new at all. "Automatic volume shadow copy is a very nifty technology that gives you snapshots of files in time but is very efficient with disk space since it only stores changes in the data." available in XP pro, set it up and used it a few times too. also available in svr03.

alliancemillsoft
alliancemillsoft

Obscure fact and major PIA .. Does anyone know that Vista now tries to out think installation programs by not allowing setup files to run other setup files? This happens pretty often in all kinds of published software, and MS claims to do this for security. The user doesn't get a prompt asking if he wants the second, third, whatever setup program to run, MS just doesn't allow it to run. It actually more restrictive than even this .. go to Installshield forums or some other installation software forums to learn more. I believe this was incorporated to sell more software upgrades. And User rights management .. what a massive PIA. And when you disable it Vista constantly reminds you that it's disabled. Thanks for that. Maybe I need to poke the registry to find a way to turn that anoyance off too. Just what I want to do .. Bottom line though, it doesn't matter what MS publishes .. it'll become the new standard in a bout 18 months and there is no looking back. I do see Vista as a big mistake for MS .. the user experience gap between Windows and Macs is a big chasm now .. users likely to benefit from Vista are those poor idiots who still use IE and Outlook to interact with the web. Thiose who live in a MS only software world. If you're that security lax, then "upgrade" so you can be "protected" in the MS way. Oh, and corporates will love the User Rights so they can turn your "rights" off. IT gets to cripple users in a new better way! Yeah! Much of the "new" features in Vista are already available as free add ons to XP .. Google desktop search, lots of sidebar programs, Firefox and Thunderbird, etc.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

Extensive, cheap, no unruly neighbours, no traffic problems, great views, unpolluted... I'm the vendor you believe me, don't you? OK so it's on Mars...

nighthawk808
nighthawk808

You're right; there is much more behind all the less-than-enthusiastic reception Vista has gotten from the media. Go out and explore all the different ways Vista is borken, and don't forget to bring your credit card.

reevesm89
reevesm89

The article states that according to the MS License agreement, "multiple processors" did NOT mean multi-core, (as in a dual-core processor). Since a "Dual Core" processor, such as an Intel Core 2 Duo, acts with the idea of "2 processor cores in 1" then your computer -is- working at full capacity. Sorry if my explanation was not thorough or partially inaccurate. I hold no warranty.

jbenfield
jbenfield

Be careful....he did specifically mention recommending the product to clients which implies (though not strongly) business users. Home Edition is not for commercial use and if you want all of the new media features AND the ability to log into a domain (which is pretty much a given if you're a business user), Ultimate or Enterprise are really your only decent choices. Business edition doesn't have all of the Media capabilities that everyone is so excited about. I agree that it's probably not $399 for most customers. But it's considerably more than the Home Edition upgrade price. The rest of this post is responding to the overall thread and not to you, personally, opensource. So please don't take offense. You just provided a hook into the thread. As a user of both Vista and XP-SP2, I would have to say that XP SP2 is a much more mature and stable product. Vista is a good first release, but it's not quite there with legacy hardware support or full compatibility with third-party application software. Out of the box, it's an outstanding achievement. But Microsoft didn't exactly play nicely with *some* third-parties to ensure that everything was well tested and stable for the launch. So, yes, Vista is great....all praise Vista. But tread cautiously if you aren't using Vista Certified hardware or if you run any non-Microsoft applications or utilities. As with any new release...before using it for anything business critical; test, test, test and then test again. If you can't take the time to do it, wait for others to do the work and for the appropriate fixes and patches to be released. As for bias, I strongly suspect that the bias works both ways. People that use Vista on certified hardware for very specific tasks are finding it to be remarkably stable and functional. Others who use a wide variety of third party tools, have legacy hardware or who find themselves trying to interface with clients that haven't upgraded may have an entirely different experience. Watching the two communities argue with one another claiming that the other is biased is really kind of sad. Having had both experiences with different hardware and software, I can definitely see the validity of both sides of the argument.

A_Selby
A_Selby

...he's got his fingers in his ears ;-)

rpmcestmoi
rpmcestmoi

It is a dream, that machine, but not one I am willing to pay for, staying with my PowerBook G4 which serves nicely. After working as my wife's technical shop on a very good and fast piece of hardware running Windows last iteration, I convinced her that a 20" iMac would do very nicely for her computer. Downtime has been non-existent since the change and using Parallels to run one program that she uses for work. As to wanting to understand the Microsift OS and "fine- tune" my computer, aka making the damn thing function most of the time without a blue screen, it interested me for a time but I feel there are too many things in life that are more interesting and to which I prefer to devote time. My Prius is a very nice car and functions well. I do not want to tweak it and do not care to understand it beyond the primitive level I do. A matter of choices, I suppose. For the non-geek, I guess, the challenge loses its appeal when the sun is out and the tennis court is available.

nighthawk808
nighthawk808

The BSOD went away in Vista. It's red now. Wireless power?! Wow, I'm impressed. Vista supports a technology that doesn't even exist yet. Does Vista also run on DNA and quantum computers, too? Will it automatically reset the clock in my De Lorean time machine when I come back from 1955?

puppeteer
puppeteer

...that they committed suicide years ago with their rights management. Newsflash: Apple has the same default user rights scheme. That's right, you have to approve administrator access for major system functions too. Hell, you have to put your password in. But by all means, act like this is a new thing that no one has ever seen before.

pvh006
pvh006

. . .my previous post,I will now appease all you grumblers. Please keep in mind that computer technology is still an evolving mechanism and probably always be. What I meant was for you all to just have fun with it and don't take it so seriopusly, as all of it still has many flaws, but we are further ahead than 1997 and it can do many amazing things in spite of its shortcomings. Alternatives to Windows Vista are not limited to "Linux" (also vastly improved) but include whatever version of Windows or Mac that works best for you. Good bye, I'm outta here.

apotheon
apotheon

I misread this line from the article: "[i]In fact, all versions of Vista will run on a machine with multiple processors installed--but Home Basic and Premium will recognize and use only one of the processors.[/i]"

TheGooch1
TheGooch1

Reeves! What is this no warranty jibber-jabber? I bought an extended warranty for your advice at Best Buy. Hey, its only 6.95/year!

A_Selby
A_Selby

I don't think I suggested anywhere that there was any need to be an expert in every major current OS. If your job requires you to be an expert in one particular OS (or family of OSes), then that's what you have to focus on. I was merely stating that all OSes have their uses and that Linux really isn't hard work compared to other OSes. It irks me when people get stuck on one OS and get the idea into their head that its the best at everything. The rabid Windows or OSX or Linux faithful that hold their OS above all others and denegrate the rest are wrong. There have been a few people that commented on this thread and that comment was aimed at them. Windows is not so insecure, OSX is not perfect and Linux is not so hard when you get down to it. This doesn't mean that I'm a jack-of-all-trades or that I think there's anything much to be gained from being one. I am a user of Windows, Linux, AIX, OS2 and OSX. I would consider myself a 'power user' in Windows and Linux and OS2. I have admin level skills in Linux (I've had to blood myself over the last year or so when I took on the responsibility of administrating a Linux server in my job - made easier thanks to the wonderful YaST2). However, I'm only really at expert level in Windows. That suits my current role well enough, but that could easily change and I'm glad I've been getting stronger in Linux recently because I'll never know when I'll have to make that switch. I suppose you have to strike a balance between gaining more and more expertise in your chosen OS and being 'agile' and capable of change. It can all depend on the choices your company (or client) makes - you might just find that your hand is forced somewhere down the line. As for not having time to learn a new OS, surely this would apply to Vista too if you were a Linux expert completely out of touch with Windows?

rkuhn040172
rkuhn040172

Two month old twins that have spent 7 out of the first 9 weeks of their life in the hospital. Sorry, I've done plenty of after hours work, plenty of staying up late at night. I believe in quality and not quantity. I'd rather be the best administrator in MS products ever than some wanna be administrator who knows a little bit about everything but not a lot about anything. That's what's wrong with the IT industry nowadays anyways. Folks who have some knowledge on all OS's, fluffed up resumes, but a complete lack of experience and depth in everyday, hard core skills. You know the type. The ones that will whore out their skills just to try to compete with the half ass support one gets from India. Besides, so far my head is still above water AND I have a healthy, happy family in the process. I have a career not a job and I control my life instead of the other way around.

rpmcestmoi
rpmcestmoi

Dear Rick, What could you have been thinking? Someone once called that kind of life The Treadmill to Oblivion. If you and your others are all very happy, please give me a clue.

kaicremata
kaicremata

and inform them that due to economic circumstances, one of them has to be laid off. where is the time? thats what God made insomnia for...the productive hours from 12 to 4 am. its the only way i can keep my head above water.

rkuhn040172
rkuhn040172

"The people that say Linux is hard work obviously have no idea what hard work really is." It's not so much that, but for those of us that wear so many hats (Windows desktops, Office, servers, Exchange, SharePoint, SQL, AD, Cisco, etc), to be honest, I don't have the time to learn a new OS. I know that excluding OSX or Linux from my talent pool limits me, but the reality of it is I don't have the time (even though I do periodically play around with Linux). From a career perspective, it is my opinion that my time is better spent perfecting my current skills as opposed to broadening the scope of them without much depth in the new. I already work 50 hours a week, have a home business, a wife and 4 kids (two of which were just born...twins and 2 months premature), as well as a consulting stint with Burger King doing some Flash animations. Where is the time?

A_Selby
A_Selby

It's not just Windows that can benefit from customisation, any OS can. There are some sites and forums that feature fixes for Mac bugs and glitches (yes, Mac users face problems too!). I've just found that most (not all) of the guys I know that run Macs send them back first time they run up against a problem. The same can be said for the majority of Windows users, but some of us like to be self sufficient. If you're actually good at it, you'll still have plenty of time for tennis, or whatever your favourite pastime is... Linux, OSX, Windows [XP/2k/Vista] - it really makes no difference to me. I have a thing for them all, they all have their uses, and after a little adjustment they'll all behave themselves. The people that say Linux is hard work obviously have no idea what hard work really is. Those that say that Windows is unstable are probably causing the problem themselves, truth be told and the people that say that OSX is too obfuscated or difficult to get apps for etc. are obviously not looking in the right places. They all coexist in peace and harmony. Let's just all try to get along, for the children ;-)

GhostBrowser
GhostBrowser

But an argument can be made that soft off (That?s when the OS sends the turn off the power command) will control wireless power in the way you suggest

nighthawk808
nighthawk808

I believe you mean wireless output strength settings.

GhostBrowser
GhostBrowser

Have existed for some time now And are supported by XP

husp1
husp1

it will knit you a sweater from your own bellybutton lint as well!!

TheGooch1
TheGooch1

Open a terminal window, SU ( switch user ) to root. Run commands that need root access from that terminal window. No sudo required. If you don't what to log in as root, or enter the root password when prompted, then you can use sudo to let your normal user account run commands that usually require root access. Its configurable so that you can be as permissive or restrive with these as you like.

husp1
husp1

linux requiers a "Super user do" AKA."sudo" for just about everything you do to change the confiurations in it. so perhaps you need to heed your own advice before you critisize others. lummox

rkuhn040172
rkuhn040172

Please do some research and/or use a product before you comment on it. The new UAC feature in MS Vista does indeed ask for the admin password if the user is trying to do something that would normally require admin privileges and that user isn't an admin. You are assuming in your comments that the user (Joe) is an admin. And even then some admin specific tasks are still flagged by the UAC as well even if you are an admin. Let me ask you this. If you're using Linux and you log in as the admin, just how good is the UAC equivalent feature in Linux? Just as good as the Vista feature if you're logged in as an admin. Don't assume that your fictional character Joe is an admin without disclosing that in your comments.

theo.brinkman
theo.brinkman

You seem to confuse User Authentication (what OSX does) with User Approval (what Vista does). Vista asks you if you meant to do what you just did. (And it asks *a lot*.) This is no different than the XP way of confirmation dialogs, they've just added about 20 times as many dialogs. Mac OS X (and Linux) actually ask you to *prove* who you are before doing something sensitive to the computer. If you think those two things are equivalent, you *deserve* Windows-grade security. Just as an example: Joe walks away from his PC for a minute. Ed, his arch-nemisis, sees him leave and goes to install some spyware on his box so he can sabotage Joe's competing project. The result? Vista helpfully asks Ed if he's *really sure* he wants to do this. Of course he does! OS X helpfully asks Ed to prove that he's Joe. Oops, no luck there.

Tony Hopkinson
Tony Hopkinson

I'm glad you told me that, I wouldn't have figured it out myself. After MPE/XL, CP/M , DOS, HP_UX, VMS, Unix ... Thanks for the heads up. 1997 was 10 years after I started commercially, I started as a hobbyist in 1978... nuff said eh.