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Mossberg - Vista Is Worthy, Largely Unexciting 398

Posted by Zonk
from the it-cannot-slice-tomatoes dept.
Carl Bialik from WSJ writes "Wall Street Journal tech columnist Walter S. Mossberg says Vista is the best version of Windows yet, but doesn't represent a major step forward: 'Overall, it works pretty much the same way as Windows XP.' More from the review: 'Nearly all of the major, visible new features in Vista are already available in Apple's operating system, called Mac OS X, which came out in 2001 and received its last major upgrade in 2005. ... in my tests, some elements of Vista could be maddeningly slow even on new, well-configured computers. Also, despite Vista's claimed security improvements, you will still have to run, and keep updating, security programs, which can be annoying and burdensome. Microsoft has thrown in one such program free, but you will have to buy at least one more. That means that, while Vista has eased some of the burden on users imposed by the Windows security crisis, it will still force you to spend more time managing the computer than I believe people should have to devote.'"
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Mossberg - Vista Is Worthy, Largely Unexciting

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  • Downloadable (Score:5, Informative)

    by fittekuk (1033554) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:25PM (#17667000)
    Has anyone else noticed that Microsoft is going to allow you to purchase and download Vista over the net, instead of having to buy the physical CDs?
    I guess many here are not planning to buy it, but anyway, this is something new from Microsoft. I guess they are really happy with their Genuine Advantage to go through with this.
  • Heh (Score:4, Funny)

    by Stormx2 (1003260) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:26PM (#17667012)
    And so, the last horse crosses the finish line...
  • by Anonymous Coward
    "Nearly all of the major, visible new features in Vista are already available in Apple's operating system"...

    OUCH!
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:27PM (#17667040)
    you could hear the sounds of chairs breaking all over Redmond.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:27PM (#17667046)
    Use the operating system Walter Mossberg called 'The best version of Windows yet!'
  • Vista is fantastic!
  • My 2c (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Toreo asesino (951231) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:31PM (#17667138) Journal
    Vista is indeed a worthy improvement, but not a worthy upgrade. I'd buy it on a new PC, but in no way buy it outright...

    UAC is one of the biggest improvements in my opinion; not in that it makes Windows nicer to use (far from it in fact), but that finally, Windows has adopted a more *nix based approach to user-security (in at least, you don't have to be a full admin to do anything useful, and full-admin rights are difficult to obtain) and thank god for that!

    But like I say, I'm not rushing out to buy it...and not many people will either if you ask me.
    • Re:My 2c (Score:5, Informative)

      by ThinkFr33ly (902481) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:39PM (#17667292)
      Perhaps you're not fully aware of all of the new features in Vista [wikipedia.org].
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        Most of these "New and Updated Applications" are stuff I've had for years on my Mac.
        DVD, Mail, Calendar, Addressbook, Fax & Scan.

        Windows Imaging Component sounds identical to Core Image
        • Re:My 2c (Score:4, Funny)

          by dan828 (753380) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:01PM (#17667754)

          Most of these "New and Updated Applications" are stuff I've had for years on my Mac.
          DVD, Mail, Calendar, Addressbook, Fax & Scan.

          Windows Imaging Component sounds identical to Core Image


          Pfffttt. The new version of minesweeper rocks! Don't have that on you Mac, do you?
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          But the Mac versions don't have "Windows" prefixed on them so that your Start menu is polluted with a neverending series of items like Windows Mail, Windows Calendar, Windows Media Player, Windows Internet Explorer, Windows Picture Gallery, Windows Movie Maker, Windows Live Messenger, and so forth. How could such pervasive branding be wrong? Buy Windows Vista Home Premium Edition today! BUY THE BRAND!
      • by Skidge (316075)
        Heh, if you're a fan, you can get the Limited Edition, Bill Gates Signature Version [amazon.com] of Vista Ultimate Upgrade. Better hurry. Only available while supplies last! :)
      • Perhaps you're not fully aware of all of the new features in Vista
        Hmm he mentioned UAC... What else... Ah, you must mean the DRM!
    • Re:My 2c (Score:4, Insightful)

      by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:06PM (#17667868) Homepage

      Honestly, I have software assurance, and therefore free upgrades to Vista, but I'm not budging from Windows XP. And I'm not just saying that I need time to test it, or I'll wait for SP1. I'm saying I don't fricken want the thing. I've tried it out on a couple systems, in some cases having a harder time getting it to work that I've had with XP. It won't run some old Windows software, or at least not properly, so I'd have to buy a whole bunch of new software. The new interface is annoying. UAC is annoying. The whole thing is just maddening to use.

      It doesn't seem to me that I'll be missing out on anything if I choose not to upgrade, either. None of the new features are particularly helpful. Not one. I'm just not going to run Vista until Windows XP won't run on new hardware being manufactured.

      • Re:My 2c (Score:4, Insightful)

        by 0racle (667029) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:37PM (#17668488)
        I've heard this before somewhere. Wait, replace Vista with XP and XP with 2000 and it's like I'm back in 2001.
        • Yeah, and it was true, then, too. Windows 2000 was a great release. Windows XP offered practically no improvement, but at least most Windows 2000 software ran on XP.
          • by j-turkey (187775)
            Yeah, and it was true, then, too. Windows 2000 was a great release. Windows XP offered practically no improvement, but at least most Windows 2000 software ran on XP.

            Terminal services on the desktop is huge, from a business IT standpoint. I felt the same way as you until I found out how much time and money TS and Remote Assistance saves an IT group. For a desktop user, it's no big deal - but for businesses, it's big.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        The biggest reason for me not to install it on my Boot Camp Partition is that Vista noticeably runs games slower than XP. Microsoft quietly admitted an average 10% slowdown in games under Vista. No thanks. Not to mention the absolutely broken 64-bit effort on the part of Microsoft. 64-bit Leopard will happily run all 32-bit drivers and apps, and won't require separate 64-bit executables, thanks to Universal Binaries. Apple's 64-bit efforts are technically superior to Microsoft's, and I'd rather just st
  • ignore the users (Score:2, Interesting)

    by cpearson (809811)
    Windows Vista is not going to be the godsend to users like microsoft made it out to be. Instead of focusing on user needs and wants, microsoft design with its own profitability in mind, ie DRM, licensing, authenication, certified drivers, and of course protected premium content (HD). A compnay has every right to do this but I think it is going to backfire unless microsoft starts working with users instead of against them.

    Vista Help Forum [vistahelpforum.com]
    • by Jugalator (259273)
      Hmm, but to be fair, there are lots of features new to Vista besides licensing and DRM. :-p

      Among things I find interesting is the new memory manager and process scheduler, shadow copies, the new driver model to run more in user mode that should help against driver bugs, the new low latency audio stack, as well as things like their full IPv4 overhaul. The latter will be interesting to see if it has any negative side effects though from being a bit unproven code in the real world. The new TCP stack will for e
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by NineNine (235196)
      certified drivers,

      If this isn't for the users, then who is it for? Do you think that MS is hiring hundreds (thousands?) of people to maintain this for fun? Are they going to make a significant amount of money from this? No, this is most definitely for the users.

      I've never seen XP crash, but the last time I've seen Windows 2000 crash was because of drivers. At this point in OS development, there's really no reason for crashing except for bad drivers (And yes, I don't think that OSX should crash ever, s
  • by derrickh (157646) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:36PM (#17667244) Homepage
    Have you ever felt that sometimes people go out of their way to put down Microsoft.

    Basically the article says:
    Vista is the best version of Windows ever...But its not.
    Vista is very secure...But only if secure it.
    You get a free Antivirus program...Buts its not as good as the ones you have to pay for.
    Vista is very easy to use...But I still had to click on stuff, so it sucks
    Vista has a cool search feature...But Apple had it first.

    D
    • Have you ever felt that sometimes people go out of their way to put down Microsoft.

      http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=4915875929 930836239#7m00s [google.com]

      'nuff said.
    • by moranar (632206)

      Basically the article says:
      Vista is the best version of Windows ever...But its not.
      Vista is very secure...But only if secure it.
      You get a free Antivirus program...Buts its not as good as the ones you have to pay for.
      Vista is very easy to use...But I still had to click on stuff, so it sucks
      Vista has a cool search feature...But Apple had it first.

      No, what he said is more like:
      Vista is the best version of Windows ever... But it's not that much better. These two statements can be both true, you know?
      V

    • by dotpavan (829804)
      He wrote the article when he was plucking the petals:
      I love Vista
      I love Mac..
    • He said, "it's the best Windows ever" in that same voice you use for "It's the Tallest Building in Topeka". It is an honor, but who cares?

      Personally, I love that the search icon is virtually identical to the one on my Mac, located in the same spot on the screen, but turned Backwards. Basically, it's the "Evil Spock" version of MacOS. The goatee is cool, but in the end, which would you rather work with?
    • by Vellmont (569020) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:23PM (#17668218) Homepage

      Have you ever felt that sometimes people go out of their way to put down Microsoft.

      No, I feel that the reviewer was expecting more from 5 years of development, and not to be burdened by hefty hardware requirements to take advantage of the new improvements. He compares it to OS X because it's gotten steadily better over the past 5 years, where the offerings from Microsoft, a much larger and richer company isn't really worthy of 5 years of development efforts.

      Really I think the article sounds quite honest. He mentions that there's some improvements, but the majority of people don't have the hardware to take advantage of the improvements. The average guy is wondering "Should I upgrade to Vista?" not "Does this guy like Vista or not?" The article essentially say that unless you have a gig or more of memory, a recent computer, and a fast graphics processor.. Vista doesn't provide any benefits worth upgrading for.

      Ultimately I think it indicates a larger problem at Microsoft. It's been more than 5 years since XP, the last desktop OS from Microsoft. That's pretty horrible considering that previously Microsoft has released a new desktop OS every about every 2 or 2.5 years (3.1 in 92, 3.11 in 93, 95 in 95, 98 in 98, 98 SE in 99, ME in 2000, WT2K in 2000, XP in 2001).

      Look at all the major changes in previous 5 year spans. Compare Windows 3.11 in 93 to Windows 98 in 98, or Windows 95 in 95 to Windows 2000 in 2000 and you'll see what I'm talking about. Hell, compare the initial (really awfull) release of OSX 10.0 to the decent release of 10.4 only 4 years later. Sure there's a lot more to improve in OS X since it was so totally new.. but the fact that Apple can pull off more in less time doesn't speak well for Microsoft.

  • by ThanatosMinor (1046978) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:42PM (#17667360)
    Seems to me kind of like saying "Best Pauly Shore movie ever"
    • Seems to me kind of like saying "Best Pauly Shore movie ever"

      or being "the prettiest Denny's waitress." (apologies to Doug Stanhope)

  • by WhiteWolf666 (145211) <(sherwin) (at) (amiran.us)> on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:42PM (#17667376) Homepage Journal
    I'm glad that you can be welcomed to the world of the-rest-of-us, with Operating System features we've had since 2005 or so.

    Now, I can only hope that Microsoft got this security "issue" fixed, so that you PC users will stop spamming me with sexually explicit crap and drug sales, and maybe my shared cable modem speeds will go up, with the worms circulating the internet being fixed in Vista.

    Hopefully, in time, I can welcome you all to the world of computing with minimal/no time spent on security and maintenance. Either way, I'm glad the world is catching up.
    • by Jugalator (259273)
      Now, I can only hope that Microsoft got this security "issue" fixed, so that you PC users will stop spamming me with sexually explicit crap and drug sales

      Sorry, the "issue" you're looking at is likely called "users", which gives me little hope in that it will be resolved anytime soon, unless you or others are to present them with a much more locked down OS.
  • by eldavojohn (898314) * <eldavojohn AT gmail DOT com> on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:46PM (#17667452) Journal
    from the it-cannot-slice-tomatoes dept.
    Well, if you get the super duper upgrade maxi plus version of Vista for $800, it comes with accessories [photobucket.com]. But wait! Order within the next fifteen minutes and Steve Ballmer will throw in his patented hair growth formula! A $4500 value for 8 easy payments of $100 plus shipping and handling!
  • Vista must be pretty good for a Mac fanboy like Mossberg to not be able to totally trash it.

    Regarding OSX:
    Mossberg praises OSX, yet dismisses Vista with "Overall, it works pretty much the same way as Windows XP." Guess what, Mossberg, the same can be said for OSX Tiger. OSX 10.4 "overall works pretty much the same way as" OSX 10.3, 10.2, 10.1, 10.0. Yet Mossberg acted like OSX Tiger was the second coming, that it was a compelling upgrade over Panther. Well, when you compare OSX Tiger with Panther, Tiger
    • by catbutt (469582) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:01PM (#17667750)
      I don't think that's fair to compare the transition from XP to Vista to OS X 10.3 to 10.4. That's basically comparing one year worth of Mac improvements to 5 of Windows'.
    • Let me understand this.

      You are comparing a software companies major NEW OS to a hardware companies revision of their OS.

      Are you really that big of a dork, or just too stupid to see the difference?

      I don't even own a Mac, and just to be perfectly clear I am picking apart your absurd comparison, not supporting one side ot another.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        You are comparing a software companies major NEW OS to a hardware companies revision of their OS.

        I disagree with your point but only because Apple charges for each revision.

        If Apple is such a hardware company, why the emphasis on milking your customers for more money for mere revisions? This is nothing new either; sometimes you get a free point upgrade from Apple, sometimes you don't. Each OSX update has come with new functionality, so that is different, and a point that will be raised by Apple fans;

      • by smoker2 (750216)
        I don't even own a Mac, and just to be perfectly clear I am picking apart your absurd comparison, not supporting one side ot another.
        Well I don't even own a *computer* so leave me out of ... oh, yeah ok, never mind.
    • CoreImage and CoreVideo came with 10.4, as is CoreData.

      The 2 first get's used in some games and some compositing software, the other is still in it's infancy and should get more maturity with 10.5.

      So, to the user, it's almost as big a step between 10.3 and 10.4 than between WinXP and WinVista.
    • by sootman (158191) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:10PM (#17667924) Homepage Journal
      This has nothing to do with fanboyism. The difference is, OS X from 10.0 to 10.1 (faster) to 10.2 (smoother looking) to 10.3 (expose) to 10.4 (dashboard, spotlight) has had lots of improvements, and each previous release was only a year or so apart, and 10.4 came out over a year ago, while Vista took the largest software company in the world 5 years to come up, stripping features the whole time, which is is just coming out now. (Where by "now" I mean "soon.") So of course the differences in each version of OS X are smaller, and of course it's more impressive to have had a product with most of the same features out sooner, and of course MS looks like crap for taking so long to deliver so little.

      Add to that the system requirements, the many different versions, and Microsoft's abysmal security record--their response to which is mostly to ask users "Are you sure you want to do this?" before every trivial operation, AND NOT EVEN REQUIRING AN ADMIN PASSWORD TO SAY 'YES'--and you can see why people aren't getting excited about it.

      On a related note, I think it would be the funniest thing in the world if Apple announced tomorrow that 10.5 would be released on Monday the 29th. :-)

    • "Mossberg praises OSX"

      Does he? Other than mentioning some features of Vista which also appear in OS X, all he really says about it is:

      "Nearly all of the major, visible new features in Vista are already available in Apple's operating system, called Mac OS X, which came out in 2001 and received its last major upgrade in 2005. And Apple is about to leap ahead again with a new version of OS X, called Leopard, due this spring."

      How is that praising OS X? Should he not compare Vista to another OS? Or should he
    • Also, don't now go upgrade someone's computer to Vista for someone who needs to run Windows for one reason or another just because of his idea of "it wasn't so different from XP anyway". The Explorer has been reworked quite a bit, the Control Panel navigation is very different (again!), and there's the whole concept with file tagging and virtual folders for novices to wrap their heads around... and when failing with that, which gets me to my point -- call closest tech support! ;-)
  • by NorbrookC (674063) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:50PM (#17667512) Journal

    FTA: even a slicker version of Solitaire

    What more could you want?

  • by vtcodger (957785) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:53PM (#17667578)
    ***Overall, it works pretty much the same way as Windows XP.***

    That's sort of like overall this year's flu virus is a lot like last year's. Or President Bush's new Iraq strategy isn't much different from the old strategy. Hardly a recommendation.

    I just spent an hour finding and killing some mysterious Browser Helper Object on my wife's XP-SP2 PC that devoted its life to helping out the browser by popping up ads in IE. At least I think I killed it. Every year, the malware gets more clever. Every release, the software gets more bloated and complex. Every year, the Internet becomes more of a mess and it is harder to find information on exorcising malware, or on persuading Windows to do even the most simple and basic things. And every year I get older, dumber, and less interested in dinking with Windows just in order to do stuff I do find interesting.

    Screw it. I never upgraded to XP, and I don't believe that I'll be upgrading to Vista. I have finally moved from Windows 95 to Windows 98 despite the fact that W95 boots faster and runs as well. But only because I think eventually I will need USB that works and I don't think that will ever be available in Windows 95.

    I don't really hate Microsoft, but they are going to have to do a lot better than NT based Windows desktops to make me a customer again. Let me know when MS releases an OS worth buying. It hasn't happened for quite a few years, and doesn't look likely to happen again any time soon.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by SEAL (88488)
      Screw it. I never upgraded to XP, and I don't believe that I'll be upgrading to Vista. I have finally moved from Windows 95 to Windows 98 despite the fact that W95 boots faster and runs as well. But only because I think eventually I will need USB that works and I don't think that will ever be available in Windows 95.

      People like you are the reason the rest of the Internet has to put up with assaults from 10,000+ zombie botnets. Would you run a Linux distribution that became dead in the water and stopped iss
  • Issues of trust... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by fahrbot-bot (874524) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:54PM (#17667604)
    I've played with Vista a little bit. It is prettier than XP and I could see some interesting and promising features in the new OS, but I have issues with the DRM and security model.

    The DRM embedded in Vista has been well hashed here and I believe the implementation will cause many people headaches, especially those wanting to view digital media.

    I'm concerned about the new security levels of the OS and that there are two levels higher than Administrator, namely System and Trusted. The sticking point for me is that (as far as I know) no user on the system, not even the admin, can access these higher levels. In other words, we are not and cannot be "trusted".

    I don't like the idea that there may be things on *my* computer that I cannot access, but Microsoft, or other entities they trust, can. I'm not sure I trust them that much...

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by NSIM (953498)

      The DRM embedded in Vista has been well hashed here and I believe the implementation will cause many people headaches, especially those wanting to view digital media.

      blah, blah, blah. The DRM in Vista will simply obey the restrictions placed on the media by the supplier of that media, it won't magically add new DRM restrictions. It happily plays non-DRM content and also allows you do all the same things you did on XP like ripping CD to MP3, ripping DVD, etc. So just what is the monstrous DRM that is be

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by sharkey (16670)

        The DRM in Vista will simply obey the restrictions placed on the media by the supplier of that media, it won't magically add new DRM restrictions.

        Instead of obeying the instructions of the OWNER of the media.

        • by glindsey (73730)
          I've never said this before, but...

          MOD PARENT UP.
        • by NSIM (953498)

          Instead of obeying the instructions of the OWNER of the media.

          Quite, but your argument is with the rights holder, not with Microsoft, as I said, if Microsoft did anything else they would be sued by the MPAA etc, which might make them a few friends amongst some users, but would inevitably result in them losing spectacularly and having to respect the restrictions placed on the content by the rights holder. You can dislike the way the movie companies etc want to protect their content as much as you like a

    • by cnettel (836611)
      SYSTEM has been in NT since NT 3.x. It's always been higher than a Vanilla administrator, and it's always required a bit of a hack to get at. It's those kinds of privileges that really no user process should need, only some services that do run as user processes (user as in "user vs kernel"). I guess that the additions of DRM in Vista may complicate things here, but surely you have seen a SYSTEM process in XP before?
    • by cayenne8 (626475)
      "The DRM embedded in Vista has been well hashed here and I believe the implementation will cause many people headaches, especially those wanting to view digital media. "

      Well, it will bug most people with high to moderate 'geek' tendencies....

      However, I doubt John Q. Sixpack will notice it much...they have tv's and media players in the living room for watching digital media. I don't think the majority of people out there watch much on the computer. Heck, most people out there I'd dare say have no idea you

    • I don't like the idea that there may be things on *my* computer that I cannot access, but Microsoft, or other entities they trust, can. I'm not sure I trust them that much...

      That's why it's not called "My Computer" anymore. Even MS isn't that dishonest. Nope it's just "Computer" now and it remains to be seen who actually ends up owning your computer in the long run.
    • by Rick17JJ (744063) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @04:21PM (#17670826)

      It looks to me that when creating Vista, Microsoft must have spent most of their time and energy on the new Windows Vista Content Protection. It is such an amazingly complicated system, that I can easily see why see why it would have taken Microsoft 5 years to create Vista. Most other new features that Microsoft had originally announced would be part of Vista were dropped, along the way, most likely because creating the protected environment for DRM was a difficult enough task by itself.

      In Vista, many of the core operating system elements have been extensively reworked in order to provide DRM content protection. Vista goes to great extremes to block the owner of the computer from gaining access to unprotected content in any possible way either in the software or the hardware itself. One example is the extreme measures taken to make sure that computer owners can not access unencrypted content on a user accessible bus. To prevent that, they plan to use 128-bit encryption on the fly at high bandwidth. I don't understand most of the details, but apparently it partly involves keeping the content encrypted as it goes from one hardware component to another. Vista is so insanely paranoid that that it also goes out about 30 times per second polling hardware to try and catch anyone playing games with any component. The system is so incredibly complicated that I don't plan to ever try to understand how it all works.

      I also wonder what effect all the extra overhead required for various components will have on hardware requirements. It sounds to me like Windows Vista itself largely was designed to be a secure DRM delivery system that Hollywood and the music industry can trust. Apparently for some reason, Microsoft did not show the same level of effort and paranoia in making Vista computers secure? Apparently protecting user's privacy is not as important. Below are three articles that are critical of the effect that the various new Windows Vista DRM features might have on hardware requirements. At the top of the first two articles there are also links to mp3 versions that are also available. The last article has already been discussed on Slashdot recently.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by drsmithy (35869)

      The DRM embedded in Vista has been well hashed here [...]

      No, the DRM embedded in Vista has been covered here with levels of FUD that even IBM, in their heyday, would have blushed about.

      If you're here hoping learn objective, factual information about Windows, you're in the wrong place.

  • by sootman (158191) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @01:54PM (#17667622) Homepage Journal
    Will people be lining up at midnight to buy it?
  • by UnknowingFool (672806) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:06PM (#17667862)
    The requirements for Vista will be the most annoying thing to consumers. Unlike XP, the basic sub $500 computer is not good enough to run most versions. The requirements difference between XP Home and Pro was not as large as it is between Vista Home Basic and Vista Home Premium. Most of the hardware requirement differences were based on the applications that the user would run. If the consumer was a gamer or edited home movies, he or she would need a better video card and more RAM. But with Vista these requirement differences are on the OS. This applies to businesses too where the modus operandi is to buy the cheapest solution as possible. So a business getting the lowest price computer finds that it is dramatically slower than XP on the same hardware is not likely to upgrade anytime soon.
    • by drinkypoo (153816)

      Unlike XP, the basic sub $500 computer is not good enough to run most versions.

      The average consumer will not need anything other than the basic version.

      You only need a fancier computer to get all the eye candy - the OS will still run programs. The only area in which users will typically have problems with the computer they already have is in memory. You can get away with 256MB on Windows XP if you don't mind suffering. Vista demands 512MB minimum. Frankly anyone with less than 512MB RAM today is alre

    • Unlike XP, the basic sub $500 computer is not good enough to run most versions.


      Perhaps you misestimate the sub-$500 computer. Today's $500 box has GeForce 6150 integrated graphics (fine for Vista and even Aero Glass), 1GB of DDR, and an Athlon 64 or Sempron processor.

      I run Vista, including Aero Glass, on a P4 2.66GHz box with 768M of memory and a GeForce 6200. It's really not that much of a problem.

  • by Jaeph (710098) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:24PM (#17668254)
    If it wasn't for the games, I wouldn't even consider vista. I have a mac laptop, and that serves most of my needs just fine. However, the selection of games on a PC is better, so I keep upgrading mine to play them.

    However, I'm starting to challenge my gaming habit, as it is getting tiresome to keep that PC going. It's not a technical challenge - I'm a typical slashdotter with experience in PCs, Macs, Unices of various sorts and so on. Nor is it a financial challenge; I have a decent job and could replace my PC now.

    The issue is the work involved just to maintain a security hole for gaming, especially when there are a few decent games available on the Mac. They may not all be exactly the games I want, but they're decent and it's only gaming.

    Now add a substantial OS upgrade to the mix, and I really am having a hard time justifying upgrading my PC more. Maybe I'll just get a console for choice in my games.

    -Jeff
    • I'm in almost exactly the same place. I have a Powerbook for my primary computer and a Mac mini working as a media hub. I have a once-top-of-the-line Windows machine that I bought to play games on about two and a half years ago, which I finally gave up on upgrading. In the end, it was cheaper (and more fum) to get a Wii and just let the Windows PC collect dust.
  • It's called DRM. Probably it doesn't worth too much, especially for people who want to use their computer, but it is really the best thing from the viewpoint of M$, or RIAA, and other similar entities.
  • by ChrisWong (17493) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @02:46PM (#17668682) Homepage
    Does anyone know why Vista is such a resource hog? I don't mean the fancy UI/eye candy. I mean basic OS functionality: even Vista's most basic mode without the fancy features has a bare minimum RAM requirement of a half gig. At home, I have a Linux/KDE box with Windows 2000 running in a VMWare image -- hardly a minimal environment -- all with 384M of RAM. Apart from the exotic graphics stuff turned off, what is it about Vista that is hogging all that RAM? Can that junk be turned off?

    Most of the time, I want an OS to boot up and get out of my way so I can open up my applications where I do my real work. I'm not sure I'm too excited about an OS that wants most of my RAM just to wake up, leaving me with little room to do real work.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mysticgoat (582871)

      Does anyone know why Vista is such a resource hog?

      I've been thinking that it has to do with the tilt bits, and all the other cross-checks that are needed to pump Premium Content from a secured file on the HD to the screen and/or speakers. Monitoring so that nothing could leech the PremCon has got to put a hell of an overhead on the OS.

  • Win2k prepresented the first time I ever bothered to go out of my way to upgrade, and liked it.

    There was NOT a single reason to go windowsXP for me except some adobe products demanded "XP ONLY", and this was the ONLY reason I upgraded to XP.

    I heard things about vista from people like my massage therapist, who like it because it plays music. I've been happy with winamp under windows for... forever. But needless to say she is saving up for a powerful enough PC to run Vista, which to me is nutty, but hey if
  • by gelfling (6534) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @03:34PM (#17669762) Homepage Journal
    In any other venue, hundreds of millions of dollars spent and YEARS late, and functionality stripped out of it left and right would be called a failure. How MS and its minions can spin a great big fat yawn into success is mindboggling. We here seem to be moderately happy that it doesn't suck like cancer. Ok it doesn't suck like cancer. Does that make it good?
  • STOP THE FUD (Score:5, Informative)

    by RzUpAnmsCwrds (262647) on Thursday January 18, 2007 @03:56PM (#17670210)
    You know, there are plenty of legitimate ways to critisize Vista (UAC being annoying, Integrated WGA), but I am sick and tired of hearing the line that you need "hefty" hardware to run Vista. You don't. It runs fine on anything that's remotely modern. I ran Vista (RTM) - including Aero Glass - on a P4 Willamette (2GHz) system with 512M of memory and a GeForce 6200. Vista (RC1) also ran fine on the cheapshit $150 Celeron system I got in 2005 for Black Friday, albeit with a memory upgrade (to 512M using an old DIMM I had sitting around) and without Aero Glass.

    Aero Glass requires DirectX 9 hardware. Any low or midrange standalone card released in the last couple of years will work. Hell, even GeForce FX 5200 cards work. Even most integrated video works, including Intel's GMA950, ATI's Radeon Xpress, and NVIDIA's GeForce 6100. My $50 Athlon 64 motherboard has integrated video that works. HP's $269 desktop has video that works.

    Does Vista require more memory? Absolutely - you want 512M at a minimum, preferably 1GB. Does it require more CPU? A bit more.

    These are not high requirements. The cheapest system sold at Best Buy can run Vista with Aero Glass. Yes, that's right - the eMachines T3516, with its 3.2GHz Celeron D, Radeon Xpress 200 graphics, and 512M of memory will run Vista just fine.

    So much for "hefty" hardware.

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