Windows

Vista SP1 imminent


It's been a difficult year for Microsoft's new desktop operating system. There's been quite some reluctance directed towards Windows Vista and uptake has been slower than Microsoft would like. While Vista does introduce some additional security and a wonderfully polished interface, it also has quite a few issues:

  1. It's slow and feels a lot ‘heavier' than XP.
  2. Driver availability.
  3. Application support.
  4. It's expensive if not bought pre-installed on new hardware.
  5. Bugs and plenty of them!

Microsoft is doing its best to ensure that Windows XP is pushed out of the picture and the majority of new machines are being shipped with Windows Vista pre-installed.

Many businesses have been holding back on upgrading to Vista due to concerns over its stability and application support. In-house applications may present a problem due to the cost of redevelopment required to support Vista; software vendors were a little slow off the mark with Vista support at the beginning of the year but the majority of them seem to be supporting Vista by now.

Bugs are one of Vistas biggest problems--is that all about to change with the release of Vista SP1? Already released to manufacturers, Vista SP1 is now imminent and will be available to the general public later this year (unless you use this registry hack). Reports so far are mixed with some people claiming they have seen serious improvements in performance while others are a little less impressed (1, 2). Will the release of SP1 be enough to persuade wary businesses to migrate?

I have an issue with Vista and my 802.11n wireless network-if I'm connected to my access point, I get terrible distortion and jitter on my audio, which becomes unbearable after 10 minutes or more of using the computer. This isn't specific to hardware as it happens with two different computers (a notebook and desktop), but it doesn't occur if I use a USB 802.11g adaptor. I'm really hoping Vista SP1 will fix this issue as it's made it quite unusable! Has anybody else experienced the same thing?

25 comments
techrepublic
techrepublic

So Vista will go from a somewhat unusable piece of whatever to a completely unusable piece of whatever as all of the "holes" that actually let you do anything are fixed.

rtrujillo@metalsurfaces.
rtrujillo@metalsurfaces.

Yes, I agree with the internet connectivity degrading on Vista after about 10 minutes. On the same laptop, I installed: XP Pro SP2, Ubuntu 7, and I've noticed that Vista's Internet connectivity only works for the first few minutes. That is not true on XP or Linux. I've tried installing newer wireless drivers, downgrading drivers; I even flashed my wireless router to the newest. Maybe Vista SP1 fixes the problem?

atm.15.atkins
atm.15.atkins

I don't know? I think Vista is Slower then XP was.

aileronguy
aileronguy

Yeah, I got a Vista machine from Dell for Christmas. It has crashed MUCH more the XP ever did (and in only 2 months). I have not installed/upgraded anything. And now the MS Bloat is sailing...the first major SP for Vista. Next time I get a Mac.

DanielM
DanielM

or if you opted for a cheap graphcis card.

normhaga
normhaga

Using Super Pi on the same machine, an HP dv9225 with an AMD tl-60 and two gigs of ram, and calculating to two million digits. Vista X64: 1 minute 45 seconds. XP Pro SP2: 1 minute 30 seconds. Same program, same hardware, dual boot. Which was faster?

normhaga
normhaga

Yes, I did stop and think about it. 1. The OEM install was removed the HD de/repartitioned and a retail/MSDN Vista X64 install was done. Only the Quick Launch Button driver from HP was installed. All the drivers came from the Manufacturers websites (NVidia, Broadcom, etc.) This nullifies your first argument. 2. The Vista partition was shrunk with Paragon Partition Manager and XP installed with retail XP Pro SP2, drivers as the Vista installation - from the manufactures websites. 3. Vista boot loader reinstalled and boot manager manipulated for dual (actually triple - a linux install as well) boot. 4. After this, then bench marks were performed. Vista lost! 5. The Nvidia GeForce Go 7600 is a good mid-line graphics card with 256 megs ram and a 19.6 megabit band width. (Something that the Nvidia GeForce 8600 and 8800 has problems with.) 7. At the time these tests were performed, the computer was three weeks old. To address something on your not on your list, lets say I am compiling a program, crunching numbers in Maple or Mathematica, and playing a game of Hearts. Where would I want the majority of processor time spent? Would it be on the processes I need such as the number crunching and compiling or would it be on maintaining the system resources? Vista really adds nothing that is better than XP, takes away much, and for the most part is not enough more secure to make worth the time or money. Vista is built on the NT 4 kernel, as is XP, but it has enough extra bloat to really slow it down. Your argument of poor choice in architecture is also misplaced. Prior to the closing of CompUSA, I did most of my purchasing at one of the local stores. Knowing most of the employees for some time, they had no problem allowing me to bring in software to benchmark various computers. I benchmarked an identically configured Intel based machine (2 Ghz CPU, all other configurations the same) and the Intel lost the race. Currently Intel is ahead in the race, at the time they were not.

Dumphrey
Dumphrey

Vista eats is for vastly improved pre-fetch cache for boot and program loads. Vista seems to me to have better memory management then XP, but then again it needs it.

DanielM
DanielM

as you clicked reply to my comment, did you stop and think about it first? I am well aware that vista runs MUCH slower on older PCs. Your poor choice in processor architecture and discrete graphics card are not grounds for an argument on performance of an operating system. I would have to point out that HP computers use solid hardware components and are very well built in spite of what their cheap plastic exterior would lead one to believe. Unfortunately, their pre-installed bloatware severely degrades their PC's performance. If I am correct, your laptop came with vista 64 bit and you added a dual boot installation of XP. This alone could justify your performance loss in vista. HP's bloated vista runs significantly slower than the speed of a fresh, clean install of vista. I'm sorry that your computer is running poorly. One with new hardware and a proper video card will be able to handle windows vista the same as it handles xp...and it will multi-task remarkably better. The reason vista is able to perform many different tasks at once is due to the fact that it utilizes your computer's available resources constantly, rather than letting them sit idle like XP does.

w2ktechman
w2ktechman

I have Vista and XP on new systems, same setup, core 2 duo, 2GB RAM, SATA drives, etc. XP still runs faster on these systems. I think that you meant that Vista runs fast enough on some of the newer systems, but it surely does not run faster than XP on them.

Dumphrey
Dumphrey

(core 2 due 2.00Ghz, 2 GB ram, 120 GB 7500rpm sata drive, Nvidia Quadro 120 (the weakpoint)) I have found Vista boots faster then XP, but after that tends to be a tad slower. But in all honesty, its not so much slower that I can complain (but I do have aero disabled).

eM DuBYaH
eM DuBYaH

Well, I was HOPING for some drivers, but too bad so sad, on my notebook, STILL no audio drivers, and on my desktop, stillno drivers for my Adaptec 2940 SCSI card. One difference that I DID see!?!? On my notbook, my Vista score went down two tenths, and my desktop lost one tenth! WOOHOO!

dabruton
dabruton

I was one of the ones that wanted to have Vista just to see what all the hype was about. I installed it on a second partition alongside XP Pro in a dual boot configuration. It installed fine, it works ok but doesn't support some of my hardware and doesn't support some of my required software (specifically my corporate VPN client). I boot it every month or two just to get the Windows updates and then reboot XP to do any real work or play. Overall, a waste of money and time. Maybe someday all my required software and hardware will work or I will get newer versions that do and I can convert over if I want to. Like most people say, there is no compelling reason to do so and I doubt SP1 is going to change that.

Justin Fielding
Justin Fielding

I updated my Vista install to SP1 a few days ago. It's still unusable as the sound jitter issue hasn't been resolved.

mechanicalmen
mechanicalmen

You've got to be kidding. That guy has nanny state on the brain. "We must take care of you because you are incapable of doing it yourself." I'm buying a copy of solaris and already have ubuntu and freespire, not to mention suse 10. I will escape the empire.

sleepin'dawg
sleepin'dawg

We happen to have two new machines with Vista Ultimate installed but haven't encountered any problems with sound, [b][i]yet[/b][/i]. It soon won't be a bother anyway,as we repartition the HDD and install Linux on them, which is being done as I speak. What pisses me off most with Vista, is being asked everytime an icon is clicked, whether or not I want to continue. This gets very old in a hurry. I don't and won't run Vista on my personal machines until they eliminate this nanny state of affairs. [b][i]WGA??? What a crock!!! It should be WGD for Windoze Genuine Disadvantage!!! [u]Microsnot the Redmond purveyor of Garbage[/b][/i][/u] [b]Dawg[/b] ]:)

Brazen1
Brazen1

I hadn't gotten to the bug-finding stage as I quickly found that a couple applications and a few pieces of hardware that were not compatible with Vista. These need (still) to be taken care of by the manufacturer and not Microsoft, but either way it is a barrier to adoption.

harold
harold

I like Vista's Windows Mail. The integrated Spam filter works great. I have not seen any Vista machines suffering from serious adware/spyware infections. This is a big plus over XP.

learysd
learysd

I have to agree that my home machine with has had no infections. The UAC really helps keep my girl friend from accidently infecting our machine.

CG IT
CG IT

There are still some places that use W2K. Heck the US Postal Service still uses NT workstations [believe me they do. I was involved with setting up the US Postal Service Post Offices at the Star Wars Celebration IV in May of last year]. I know a few banks that still run W2K desktops. I also remember when XP SP1 was going to roll out and the hubbub about that. There was the frenzy about XP SP2 and the built in firewall on by default and how that would play havoc with corporate networks. Everyone then was wondering about XP adoption rates and whether businesses and consumers would upgrade from their W2K systems. Heck what about 64 bit word processing which still hasn't been adopted in a broad way and there's the XP 64 bit edtion? I think the naysayers will find out that the criteria used previously to gage adoption can't be used today as there just isn't the $$ available to spend for having the latest and greatest. I've been running Windows Vista Business now for about a year. I really like the revamped desktop look. UAC looked to be a killer for the O/S as far as consumers were concerned but I've run it at home and like it over XP Pro.

mechanicalmen
mechanicalmen

The real reason that nobody is adopting Vista is mainly that it is completely unnecessary. People have realised that the operating systems they have installed are adequate to the task. Who needs an expensive and BUGGY new operating system that doesn't improve efficiency{and may actually hurt it)or make business sense. It's mostly superfluous. People have grown up and realise that something won't fall off if they don't have the latest, greatest and fastest thing around. Business apps don't need all those bells and whistles that gamers do. I personally predict that there will be a linux basic operating system that will become standardised for business that will be developed by businesses that are tired of the lies about the necessity of all these upgrades and new OS's. It's just blackmail to make you buy new equipment anyway. Collusion between Microsoft and equipment makers to drain new money from corporations and consumers. Like not making XP drivers for older printers and video cards that still work. Anybody ever try to download drivers for older pcmcia modem cards lately?

Dumphrey
Dumphrey

I have been trying to resolve an issue between Vista and our Exchange server. After nearly 14 hours on the phone with Dell and MS, and many packet captures latter..its confirmed. For some reason, we are getting a specific arp poisoning that only effects Vista. Randomly, the PIX internal interface will be resolved by the Vista ARP as our email server. Meaning no mail, no connection to the server... Only on Vista. Debian, winXP, win2000, Mac OSX, Mac OS9, all are unaffected... JUST Vista. I was informed SP1 should fix this issue... But to be honest, I do not expect a resolution. I also understand this is not a normal problem... Either way, I am looking forward to Vista SP1 a great deal more then I am XP Sp3. Vista SP1 SHOULD help the OS, but I can only see XP SP3 crippling the OS as they add in more DRM, WGA, etc...

da philster
da philster

You've hit the nail on the head. So Vista runs slower than XP (and W2K) so it must be better.....many businesses and individuals are getting fed-up with this Microsoft doublespeak. OK, Microsoft is a software company and needs to innovate to survive, but creating a lesser product is not the way to go. A fancy user interface at the expense of speed and a higher total cost doesn't do much for the bottom line (except, of course, for Microsoft's) Linux distro's are getting better all the time and could well be the OS of choice once they polish up their driver support. Interesting times indeed.

mechanicalmen
mechanicalmen

Vista has nothing to brag about in the driver support category. I think some Linux distro's like Ubuntu have better support. At least from Dell they do. I think Dell is poised to shrug Microsoft off their backs.

normhaga
normhaga

>"I've been running Windows Vista Business now for about a year. I really like the revamped desktop look. UAC looked to be a killer for the O/S as far as consumers were concerned but I've run it at home and like it over XP Pro." My new notebook came with Vista. Having been this route before, I did not even burn restore disks. I departitioned, installed XP, then attempted to get the drivers for the hardware. Surprise, surprise, HP did not have the drivers and could/would not tell me what the two uninstalled devices were. My soution, install Linux. From there I can virtualize XP, Vista, Mac OS X, whatever. I ran Vista for six months before becoming pissed enough to get rid of it.