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The Advantages of Upgrading From Vista To XP 765

Posted by kdawson
from the open-and-shut-case dept.
An anonymous reader passes us a blog posting, which may be just a bit tongue-in-cheek, about the pros and cons of upgrading from Vista to XP. "...there is only one conclusion to be made; Microsoft have really outdone themselves in delivering a brand new operating system that really excels in all the areas where Vista was sub-optimal. From my testing, discussions with friends and colleagues, and a review of the material out there on the web there seems to be no doubt whatsoever that that upgrade to XP is well worth the money. Microsoft can really pat themselves on the back for a job well done, delivering an operating system which is much faster and far more reliable than its predecessor. Anyone who thinks there are problems in the Microsoft Windows team need only point to this fantastic release and scoff loudly."
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The Advantages of Upgrading From Vista To XP

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  • by compumike (454538) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:22PM (#21711860) Homepage
    This new Windows XP should make a great gift!

    --
    Educational microcontroller kits for the digital generation. [nerdkits.com]
    • by ChadAmberg (460099) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:24PM (#21711886) Homepage
      The first Windows XP was something that was avoided by most for over a year. Win2k was stable, rock solid, why upgrade for the eye candy?
      And now everyone believes XP is the second coming or something. Just hurts your head sometimes...
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by h4rm0ny (722443)

        I've heard that from the application developers side, Vista has some useful and expanded functionality over its predecessors. Has anyone developed for Vista yet and can comment?
        • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

          by Anonymous Coward
          I'd say probably not since developers usually want there to be an audience for their product. : p
        • by TubeSteak (669689) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:46PM (#21712074) Journal

          I've heard that from the application developers side, Vista has some useful and expanded functionality over its predecessors.
          Not to be rude, but what the fuck does that matter if the users don't like Vista?

          They may not like it because of the UAC, or because [favorite program] doesn't work, or, or, or, but the end result is that if XP suits the users better, no amount of "useful and expanded functionality" from the developers side is going to make a difference.
          • by h4rm0ny (722443) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:00PM (#21712176) Journal

            Not to be rude, but what the fuck does that matter if the users don't like Vista?

            Well firstly I'm just curious as for the last five years I've developed exclusively on Linux platforms. Secondly, Vista will inevitably improve as bugs are ironed out and driver and application support improves. (It may never be as good as XP though due to the unacceptable DRM), so I want to know if we will ultimately be left with a better system than XP - is this a necessary step back to go forward further? Presumably if Vista does offer better functionality under the bonnet then it could be progress has been made after all. I feel very sorry for the developers who worked on Vista at the moment. It's not as if I'm suddenly going to install Vista (DRM!) but I actually have some idea of what a major effort it takes to produce a working OS and its received nothing but abuse since [before] it was released.
            • by PCM2 (4486) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:52PM (#21712566) Homepage
              Every time I hear about Vista on Slashdot, somebody has to jump in with the "DRM, DRM, DRM!" I've had Vista installed for months, and I can tell you there is no DRM problem in Vista. The stuff you hear about has something to do with playing HD content from their computer over HDMI -- or something -- and nobody does that. Repeat after me:
              • Vista plays MP3s just fine.
              • Vista plays AVIs of your favorite shows just fine.
              • Vista plays DVDs just fine.
              • You can run software to rip DVDs on Vista.
              • You can rip CD audio on Vista.
              • You can convert your DVD movies to AVIs on Vista.
              • If none of that is good enough for you, you can install a couple plug-ins in Vista and play all the Ogg and Matroska files you want.
              Seriously, Vista does kinda suck, but when you go around talking about how it sucks for reasons that aren't even true you kinda just sound like a dumbass fanboy.
              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by cyber-vandal (148830)
                People are doing that now - not many of them but the numbers will grow.
              • by h4rm0ny (722443) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @08:14PM (#21712766) Journal

                Seriously, Vista does kinda suck, but when you go around talking about how it sucks for reasons that aren't even true you kinda just sound like a dumbass fanboy.

                I sound like a "dumbass fanboy" because I expressed a dislike of DRM? In an entire thread filled with loathing for Vista, the person who was asking about behind the scenes improvements in it is the one you jump on for being a "dumbass fanboy"?

                I dislike DRM because it interferes with my own use of something that I have bought. By implementing the content protection that Vista now has, Microsoft have enabled companies to impose that DRM on me where before they were forced to deal with me fairly and sell me an unemcumbered product. So yes, I am perfectly entitled to dislike the fact that Vista has it. Unless your definition of "dumbass fanboy" is someone who can demonstrate an actual harm to them, then maybe you'd like to reconsider your words?

                • by G Fab (1142219) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @08:40PM (#21712916)
                  You have failed to demonstrate an actual harm. What precisely is it that Vista does that you are mad about? "impose that DRM on me" sounds like you don't actually know what you can't do on Vista that you would want to do.

                  I don't use WMP11, so I don't care that the IBX codes are new or whatever. I rip DVDs and TV shows that I believe I am entitled to archive, and I don't see that Vista is going to get in the way. Please follow through on your promise and tell me what your problem is.

                  I don't like Vista because of the bloat and the inefficiency, etc. Also because Vista offers zero security gains to me, since I have no trouble running XP safely. In short, Vista is for dumbasses who want to blow money on excess computing power to support glassy menus. The DRM thing is a canard, in my opinion.

                  DRM has more to do with the content producer. By permitted more restrictive DRM, Vista is probably just enabling more content to be sold over the internet. I just won't buy what I don't want. Is this not your plan too?
                  • by Fulcrum of Evil (560260) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @09:13PM (#21713124)

                    You have failed to demonstrate an actual harm. What precisely is it that Vista does that you are mad about?

                    It makes a new laptop feel 5 years old?

                  • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                    by bit01 (644603)

                    What a sucker you are. Every time M$ reduces the functionality and increases the controls people like you come out of the woodwork and claim it's not hurting. Boiled frog anyone?

                    The tilt bits alone are enough to show that M$ doesn't care about stability, performance or improving the customer experience. It's all about control.

                    And please, no nonsense about the music industry "requiring" those controls. M$ voluntarily chose to put them in and take advantage.

                    ---

                    WGA. Guilty until proven innocent. For m

                  • by ozmanjusri (601766) <aussie_bob@@@hotmail...com> on Saturday December 15, 2007 @10:04PM (#21713466) Journal
                    DRM has more to do with the content producer. By permitted more restrictive DRM, Vista is probably just enabling more content to be sold over the internet.

                    It takes two to tango.

                    If Vista didn't support DRM, content providers would have less incentive to produce damaged goods.

                    • by jthill (303417) on Sunday December 16, 2007 @07:10AM (#21715888)

                      Ok, here are multiple legitimate reasons:

                      1. I've paid many thousands of dollars for this DVD collection. I want backups.
                      2. The house has a media server. I keep *everything* on there.

                      What crime, pray tell, am I committing when I do either of those?

                      Me. Not the usual "what crime could somebody else commit" question, answer my question: what crime is involved in those two increasingly cheap and easily achievable uses?

                    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                      by Dobeln (853794)
                      Indeed - backup is a vital task. I remember those "backup machines" for the NES / Megadrive (Genesis in yankeeland) fondly. So, let's be quantitative here: Demand for non-DRM media is fuelled by:

                      - 90% "I want to pirate this stuff". (I'm in these 90%, but I don't fool myself)
                      - 10% "I want to put the contents of the disk on my central media streaming server" (And I'm being generous here)

                      Knowing my own filesharing habits (or just checking out the amount of traffic on TPB), I can hardly fault content producers
                    • by h4rm0ny (722443) on Sunday December 16, 2007 @09:01AM (#21716268) Journal

                      - 90% "I want to pirate this stuff". (I'm in these 90%, but I don't fool myself)
                      - 10% "I want to put the contents of the disk on my central media streaming server" (And I'm being generous here)

                      That's quite clearly not the case if you think about it. No DRM has on popular media has yet had any effect on piracy. Any song sold by iTunes, any DVD with Macrovision rubbish, is still just as available online as any other content. Nobody who obtains their media through unlicensend downloads has had to care about DRM. The only people who have had to care about DRM are those who have purchased media legitimately and been inconvenienced and those who are worried about the future effect on the market place of vendor lock-in and reduced functionality, such as myself.
                  • by h4rm0ny (722443) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @10:30PM (#21713610) Journal

                    You have failed to demonstrate an actual harm. What precisely is it that Vista does that you are mad about? "impose that DRM on me" sounds like you don't actually know what you can't do on Vista that you would want to do.

                    Why do you think it sounds like I don't know what Vista restricts me from doing? I just explained the problem with the DRM, but I can happily go into more detail for you if you wish:

                    Firstly, we'd better clarify what DRM technologies Vista introduces and the effect they have. There is Protected User Mode Audio (PUMA) which prevents copying of audio that the OS detects as copyrighted. It also limits what devices the audio file can be played from, presumably to prevent high-quality copies being made. PUMA also prevents the audio file being played on a non-approved player. I.e. any audio software must be have a licence from Microsoft which can be revoked. I don't think this is fully implemented yet, but it's billed as one of the new features in Vista so its presumably going to be installed shortly (whether you want it or not).

                    Next there are the Protected Video Path - Output Protection Management or PVP-OPM and Protected Video Path - User Accessible Bus or PVP-UAB. These two technologies are the video equivalents to the Protected Audio technology. Again, they prevent copying of files that Windows considers copyrighted and prevents their playback on non-approved hardware devices and software. This is already in there and active.

                    Vista is also the first MS OS to properly implement TPM - chip-based encryption on the motherboard which could have some very negative effects down the line but which I'll save for another post to keep this one to the point.

                    So what is the demonstrable harm of these technologies in Vista? Well to start with the least subtle problem, it blocks the use of a lot of existing hardware. Many of us have output devices - monitors, projectors - that would be perfectly capable of playing HD formats if Vista didn't refuse to co-poerate with these "uncertified" devices. Some people might not care about Vista forcing you to buy new hardware that the manufacturer has paid the appropriate technology licences for, but for the rest of, we have other demands on our money.

                    I know someone is going to try and explain to me that Vista doesn't prevent me playing HD content on non-approved hardware so I'll pre-empt that, I hope. It will let you play your own HD content or anything where the producer allows it. That isn't any of the HD movies that are released which is pretty much all the HD content out there. In short - yes, you can play HD content on non-approved devices so long as its nothing that you'd ever care about. ;)

                    HOWEVER, that's not the really big concern. There are more subtle problems with DRM. The technologies above mean two things that I care about and which most other people here care about. The first concerns the ability to write software for Windows. Vista is so designed that only approved software can access certain content. It will be a poorer software world if only commercial projects paying their tithe to Microsoft can make full use of the operating system and its content.

                    The second is what this means for other operating systems. DRM is an inherently closed system (unless someone wants to come up with a significantly different take on it than both Apple and Microsoft have so far). Therefore, by encouraging content companies to sell only in DRM format (and DRM is pointless if you don't), they prevent other OS's or devices from any legal means to purchase the same content.

                    The third is a concern about the future. If I'm expected to spend money on building a collection of audio and video, then I need to know that what I've bought is mine. I need to know that when I move the files to my next computer, or when I want to take them with me on my music player, or when the company that sold them to me isn't there anymore, that I ca

                    • by cmacb (547347) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @11:19PM (#21713896) Homepage Journal
                      That was an excellent summary. As in the past, most Windows users won't know what they have gotten themselves into until it is too late. At least for those willing to be educated, word is getting out. I'm tempted to cut and paste your post an e-mail it to a few non-Slashdotters I know.

                      At least then, in the future when they come whining I can say "You were warned!"
                    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                      by RzUpAnmsCwrds (262647)
                      You make some good points, but you miss the fact that the DRM technologies in Vista aren't new.

                      PUMA is a new version of the Secure Audio Path that shipped in Windows XP with Windows Media Player 9.

                      WM-DRM requires applications to either use the Windows Media framework or obtain a certificate, as you say. What you didn't say is that this is also the case on XP. In fact, WM-DRM is OS agnostic - it is the files that are encrypted to prevent playback without an "approved" player (or a DRM crack).

                      PVP-OPM is new i
                • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                  by Wookietim (1092481)
                  Guys - Vista is just an operating system. It's not religion, politics, or sex. Calm down.
              • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 15, 2007 @08:58PM (#21713020)
                I play MP3's all the time in the background on Vista. I have a duel-core 2.6Ghz Intel with 4G of memory, and as the screen changes... menus popping up, heavy disk activity, you can hear little glitches in playback. Almost like a 1/10 of a second cut in the song.

                It's amazing they managed to struggle with all the processor power and memory when Amigas can play MP3's.

                I just don't get it.
              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                The stuff you hear about has something to do with playing HD content from their computer over HDMI -- or something -- and nobody does that.

                If there were no black people in America, would segregation laws be a non-issue because no one was affected? How many people have to be screwed by an arbitrary, bullshit restriction on technologically sufficient hardware? The whole point of new hardware and software is that it's supposed to be more capable, not less. My monitor is capable of playing video at 1920x1080,

                • by rts008 (812749)
                  "If there were no black people in America, would segregation laws be a non-issue because no one was affected?"

                  You must be a Yankee. Around here, it is more likely to be a "red" person than a "black" person as you stated.

                  Most of the "black" people you speak of arrived after the "white" folks were tangling with the "red" folks, so the "black" folks were more acceptable to the "white" folks than the "red" folks were.

                  *sigh* I await the day when all of this crap is vague history, like the caveman era is to us. I
              • by TubeSteak (669689) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @09:13PM (#21713120) Journal

                Every time I hear about Vista on Slashdot, somebody has to jump in with the "DRM, DRM, DRM!" ... The stuff you hear about has something to do with playing HD content from their computer over HDMI -- or something -- and nobody does that.
                and nobody does that!?

                Really, of all the places to make such a blanket statement, perhaps the only place worse than /. would be in a forum dedicated specifically to people playing HD content from their computer over HDMI.

                Slashdot is full of early adopters, with spare computers & a penchant for hacking. It is exactly the kind of thing that someone on /. would do.
                • Considering that neither Linux nor OSX allow playing protected HD content from their computers AT ALL, let alone over HDMI, bashing Vista because it HAS that ability seems ass backwards.
                  • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                    by h4rm0ny (722443)

                    Considering that neither Linux nor OSX allow playing protected HD content from their computers AT ALL, let alone over HDMI, bashing Vista because it HAS that ability seems ass backwards.

                    I'm really sorry to see that you've been marked as Flamebait. It's a sensible point and deserves areply from anyone who disagrees, not a stupid modding.

                    The reason that its so difficult to play this content on OSX and Linux is because of the DRM. Without that DRM we would be fine. One problem with Vista's DRM is that by

              • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @10:34PM (#21713640)

                Vista is, clearly, both less reliable and less efficient than XP for a significant proportion of people who have tried it. If it had one bad review, that would be one thing, but the web is full of them and of reports from lab tests confirming it in various contexts, and my personal experience and conversations with friends who have seen it is entirely consistent with those reviews and tests. So I have no problem accepting that Vista is inferior to XP in significant ways.

                Now, it may be that it's not really down to the DRM. I find it credible that it is, given the nature of DRM technology, and I guess most people reading this have read the high profile articles with more technical details that claim so. But in any case, it doesn't really matter a whole lot why the performance is worse than XP, just that it is worse. If DRM is getting the blame and MS is suffering bad press because of some FUD here, I'm not exactly full of sympathy: it's not like they have a history of being whiter than white in their objective criticisms of their competitors' offerings, nor like the claims about poor performance/compatibility/reliability aren't essentially all true.

              • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

                by PopeRatzo (965947) *
                I dislike DRM on philosophical as well as operational grounds. If an operating system incorporates it, even if I don't happen to use that feature, I won't use that operating system.

                Please realize that you are not going to talk people into using Vista, PCM2. You delineate all sorts of things that I can do on Vista. There wasn't one thing on your list that I cannot do in XP, in many cases more easily and in most cases faster. So why exactly would I spend the money on the new OS?

                So if you are going to acc
              • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday December 16, 2007 @01:40AM (#21714608)
                I have to say that I have only encountered Vista for about ten minutes---and had a DRM problem.

                One of my housemates has a Vista laptop, but doesn't own a printer. When tax season came, he needed his W2 form, which was only available as a download from the ADP website. So, he downloaded the PDF, and tried to email it to me. And failed. Vista refused to let him save a local copy so he could email it. When he tried to save it, a little message popped up saying (paraphrasing here,) "The owner of this document has flagged that it contains sensitive information. Windows cannot save a local copy."

                Seriously.

                I even checked the temp directories---nada. Windows was storing it only in RAM.

                In the end, my housemate had to give me his SSN, date of birth, employee data, and everything needed to log into the website from my computer. I saved a local copy and emailed it to him when I was done printing it.

                When he tried downloading it from gmail, of course, Vista forbade him to save it.

                I'm sure Vista can do all the things you list, but when you can't save a copy of your own goddamn W-2 form? Yeah, the DRM really is a problem.
                • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

                  by dhavleak (912889)

                  It doesn't sounds like the DRM problem was a Vista issue. It seems much more likely that this was an Adobe Acrobat DRM feature -- the PDF format has extensive DRM support built into it, since it's quite commonly used for specifications, marketing materials etc. that company's consider their 'IP'.

                  Seriously.

                  Seriously :)

                  I even checked the temp directories---nada. Windows was storing it only in RAM.

                  It's not windows -- it's acrobat. Acrobat was only storing it in RAM, and did not write anything to a temp file.

                  In the end, my housemate had to give me his SSN, date of birth, employee data, and everything needed to log into the website from my computer. I saved a local copy and emailed it to him when I was done printing it. When he tried downloading it from gmail, of course, Vista forbade him to save it.

                  I cannot believe you get modded +5, Interesting for this piece of fiction. Is MS h

              • by tepples (727027) <{tepples} {at} {gmail.com}> on Sunday December 16, 2007 @02:22AM (#21714802) Homepage Journal

                Windows Vista 64-bit edition does not load any unsigned kernel-mode drivers, and it does not load test-signed drivers outside of an ugly "test mode". It costs $500 per year to get a code signing certificate from VeriSign. (Google will tell you more [google.com].) Providers of assistive technologies, especially individuals and small non-profit organizations, often can't afford this expense.

              • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                by Sparr0 (451780)

                The stuff you hear about has something to do with playing HD content from their computer over HDMI -- or something -- and nobody does that.

                Vista also cripples DRM'd HD content over DVI (without HDCP) and VGA, which PLENTY of people do. I know dozens of people who do laptop->TV via VGA and DVI on a regular basis, and maybe ten who have HTPCs of one sort or another connected via VGA or DVI. My current desktop has plenty of horsepower to run Vista, but no HDCP support, so god help me if I was using Vista to watch my HD content on my projector.

          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by abionnnn (758579)
            Here's my "Vista experience".

            I was helping my dad who wanted to purchase a laptop. Now I'm not anti-Microsoft, but from all I had read about Vista, I didn't have a positive opinion of it. I told him to find a laptop with XP on it, but upon entering many major stores, we discovered there weren't any.

            To cut a long story short, despite all my advice he decided to acquire a machine that came with Vista. The machine itself was quite "beefy", 1.8GHz core duo, 1 gig of ram, etc. but it still took it about 4 minute
      • by Fëanáro (130986)
        I still prefer win2k or win2k3, not as much clutter to disable, less noncritical updates to test.
        Win2k runs with less ram, and win2k3 has everything xp has, with more sane defaults.

        the only thing xp seems to be good at are notebooks, with the energy options and improved wireless in sp2.
      • Because it was truly an upgrade from Win98SE (and especially ME)?
      • by canuck57 (662392) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:01PM (#21712192)

        And now everyone believes XP is the second coming or something. Just hurts your head sometimes...

        Hey, but Microsoft is brilliant. People now pay for it twice! Once through the OEM for Vista, then again to get the XP SP2 media. Bet M$FT will have a good quarter bilking the consumer.

      • by TMonks (866428) <TMonganIV AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:07PM (#21712240)
        Win2k may have been stable, but what about those of us coming from the hell that is 98/ME? For us, XP was the second coming, for no matter what problems it had, they couldn't possibly be worse than what we had to deal with before. Now we are expected to transition from a very stable, mature operating system to one that gives me nightmarish memories of the pre-XP days.
      • by neostorm (462848) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:18PM (#21712324)
        I was thinking this exact same thing. For me, 2k was the best Windows OS that Microsoft had ever made. It allowed me to run old DOS stuff, had the accessibility of Win98, but was still light on it's feet, being free from the bloat that came with XP.
        When XP came out I used 2K for years afterwards, up until SP3 or 4, which basically crippled the stability of the OS to XP-level (everything would crash for me after a certain point, even on fresh installs, which didn't occur before).
        I ended up switching to XP afterwards, and it really has become the "better" OS when compared to Vista (I still yearn for early-2K).
        Now I run a separate hard drive with Vista (because I just can't afford to use it as my primary OS, it's still too crippled in too many ways), but I need >4GB of RAM for my work, and Windows 64-bit is completely unworkable. I have never been such a frustrated Microsoft customer.
        All I want them to do is make a simple, light OS that stays the fuck out of my way. They could ditch almost EVERYTHING from Vista but the fact that it runs my applications, and it would be the greatest OS ever, but I don't think they will ever do this.

        It's gotten to the point where I have literally considered learning how to be a programmer simply so I could make my own custom linux builds, but I figure if whole communities aren't able to get decent compatibility for Windows apps I'd never be able to in a million years. :1
      • by garett_spencley (193892) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:34PM (#21712428) Journal
        I remember the "group" who used Win2k and didn't see the point in switching the XP. XP wasn't an upgrade or a downgrade. It was a "new" Desktop-targeted OS that was based on NT instead of DOS/9x. So there was no reason for Win2k users to switch to XP since Win2k was already that.

        But that completely forgets all of the 98 and ME users that XP was made for. XP was definitely "the second coming" for those users. It was a HUGE upgrade. In terms of both stability and features. No more blue screens. No more FAT filesystem etc. Most desktop users didn't use Win2k. It was mostly developers and power users. So yeah, there was probably a lot of /. users using Win2k, myself included, but the average desktop was running 9x/ME and there was huge incentive for those users to upgrade to XP.

        Now everyone is using XP for the most part. I haven't used Vista yet, but from what I've heard it doesn't really offer any reason to "upgrade". I was, and still am, curious and am kind of anxious to try it out. But I'm happy with XP and haven't heard any compelling reasons to feel any kind of need to switch.
      • by Fulcrum of Evil (560260) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @09:11PM (#21713106)

        And now everyone believes XP is the second coming or something. Just hurts your head sometimes...

        It took something like Vista to make us appreciate XP. That and people aren't allowing stuff to install on win2k (Photoshop, I'm looking at you).

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by paganizer (566360)
          hI.
          I'm from the Win2k underground.
          We've managed to patch all the crippleware that "insists" on XP so that it runs (better, of course) on Win2k.
          Just look around via Google, or ask on the win2k usenet groups.
          The only things you can't do with Win2k PRO at this point:
          Run a circa 2003-2004 hyperthreading CPU well. It'll run ok, but not well.
          Run a 64-bit CPU well. They limited 64-bit support to only high-end server versions of win2k.
          "Two Worlds" is presenting problems. We are still working on it.
      • The first Windows XP was something that was avoided by most for over a year. Win2k was stable, rock solid, why upgrade for the eye candy?

        That's a silly thing to say. The user base for Win2k was miniscule compared to the user base for Win9x. I jumped on the XP bandwagon as soon as I could. I was not alone. There was some real enthusiasm for a much more reliable and stable OS that supported networking in a reasonably sane fasion, and didn't rely on an ancient WINSOCK cludge to connect to the internet, and supported USB, and supported multiple processors, and could be set up with something that sort of approximated security, and didn't nee

    • by canuck57 (662392)

      This new Windows XP should make a great gift!

      That might not be a bad idea. Microsoft is going to discontinue XP in January.

      Brilliant cash stream move by Microsoft. Sell Vista to the OEMs, then when the customer thinks it is crap because it does not work with their toys, they buy XP. Brilliant. Profit!

      I would bet if Microsoft stops selling XP, PC prices will plummet and those copies might become worth something. Might be a good time for me to pickup a cheap PC and Vista coaster. Maybe run Fedora, U

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by DaveWick79 (939388)
        MS has extended the XP OEM date until June 20, 2008, and if demand is still strong they will extend it beyond that. I would be very surprised if they cut it out of the OEM channel before 2009.
  • by jellomizer (103300) * on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:28PM (#21711920)
    It took so long to get Vista People forgot what XP use to be like on the modern systems of the time. Same thing happends with Mac OS X leopard. Most of the problems with Vista is much like when they upgraded to XP, Yes different problems but just as anoying... If you really want to get a perspective Install WIndows XP SP0 on a PC that is 5 or 6 years old... Then you see what you are missing.
    • You are wrong (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Rob Simpson (533360)
      Well, I'm not sure about Mac OS X. But I did install Windows XP SP0 on a PC five years ago, and it was amazing compared to 98SE (besides the fact that I had to turn off the ugly theme and install Zonealarm, which took all of 2 minutes).
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by AaronLawrence (600990) *
      Yes, but times are changing. Even if it's exactly the same thing, people are no longer so excited about the latest and greatest PC. Instead, the PC has become a fairly standard tool that is expected to work a certain way and there's no point throwing thousands of dollars at it just to be "up to date".
  • by corsec67 (627446) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:28PM (#21711926) Homepage Journal
    Now if only MS could release a version of XP that didn't have the activation stuff. Get rid of all of the DRM that is in Windows now, aid then they would be "customer friendly".

    Quit trying to make the software stop working, and concentrate on making it work all of the time.

    Of course, if the customer experience is terrible, nobody would bother trying to pirate Windows.
  • by slicenglide (735363) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:29PM (#21711930)
    It's really sad when you see how much power is truly lost on vista. I setup a Mac the other day for a client, and it was also running XP through parallels. It ran both just fine with only one gig of ram. A virtual machine, and two entire operating systems... and most PC's out there that are not quad cores with two gigs of ram run like shit. I used to be a microsoft fanboy... -But sadly the tides are changing.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by ZeroPly (881915)
      I wonder about this too. I just upgraded to Ubuntu 7.10 and went way overboard on the simultaneous hardware upgrade. Not very smart, I now have a system with 8GB memory and a 512MB nVidia card that I don't actually do any gaming on.

      To test memory usage and see if it actually made any difference, I launched 60 separate Firefox windows. I went to each one and pointed them to pages that had animations etc. Played video on a couple. With all that going on, Ubuntu was using about 700MB of memory and only running
      • by Jeremi (14640) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:09PM (#21712264) Homepage
        How can Microsoft need SO much more resources to do essentially the same thing?


        My guess is that they had to add in the new shiny features while simultaneously retaining backwards compatibility with every buggy program and half-broken API they've ever released all the way back to Windows 3.1. That sort of requirement can really complicate things, and you end up having to code everything as conservatively as possible and never take any shortcuts for fear of breaking something.


        If I was Microsoft, I would design a new OS from the ground up, and commission VMWare or someone to include functionality for running "legacy/XP" programs in a VM. Then Microsoft's legions of good programmers might be free to come out with something good, as opposed to spending all their brain cycles trying not to break old software (and still sometimes failing, I might add)

        • by Archtech (159117) on Sunday December 16, 2007 @06:00AM (#21715604)
          "If I was Microsoft, I would design a new OS from the ground up..."

          Big mistake! That's precisely what Microsoft and its engineers have never been able to do properly. First they had DOS (which, as you'll recall, they "got" from someone else by whatever means). Then they had Windows, based on ideas picked up from a visit to Apple (which in turn got them from Xerox PARC, but that's another story). Neither DOS nor Windows 1-2-3 was really much good as an operating system, either in terms of functionality or stability. (And don't even think about security - that wasn't on the requirements list at all).

          Then came the big turning point, when Gates had the wit to hire Dave Cutler and his crew from DEC, whose management was doing such a great job of driving it under the waves despite having the most powerful engines on the high seas. Ironic, really - DEC had great hardware and software coupled with lousy management, and Microsoft had great management coupled with lousy software. Naturally DEC didn't have the wit to hire some Microsoft managers, because its own managers were too dumb to think of that.

          Everything you like about Windows since the mid-1990s is directly attributable to Cutler and his team. They laid down a steel skeleton for the "Black Pearl" that was Windows 3, while (regrettably) keeping the same user interface more or less intact. The result was a series of OS - NT, 2K, and XP - all of which (once debugged) are solid clients and pretty reliable servers too. To this day much of the internals of Windows bears a striking resemblance to the internals of VMS, right down to the names of data structures.

          The trouble with Vista was precisely that Microsoft tried to get clever and creative. The further they get from the original NT steel skeleton, the more lost they are. (Don't even get me started on WinFS, which they never even managed to deliver).
    • by h4rm0ny (722443)

      That's the truth. Due to being sick of sitting at my desk all day, I've now pulled out my old laptop so I can read /. on the sofa. I'd forgotten the specs on this thing until I saw your comment so for comparison, I just had a look at what I'm using. It's a 700MHz Celeron with, I'm not joking, 64MB of RAM. (A Dell Inspiron 2500 if you must know). It's running Xubuntu and browsing with Firefox 2, multiple tabs, and though it is slow to start some applications, it's useable enough. It's even letting me read a
  • Funny, and a nice jab at "upgrading" windows, but really, this could have been much better done by a better writer. How many times did he end up writing "snappy and responsive" to describe XP versus Vista?

    also, it really could have benefited from a singular tone. Satire is much better when the voice of the piece doesn't change. Take a page from the onion and just treat this as though it were a review of a "new" OS from microsoft.

    All in all, not 1/10 as good as it could have been.
    • by mincognito (839071) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:46PM (#21712070)
      Really? I thought the writer presented a number of compelling reasons to "upgrade" to XP including:
      • No crazy graphic bugs
      • It's faster and more responsive
      • No system lock on login
      • Better multitasking
      • File copying and deleting are quicker
      • Automatic update is less resource hungry
      • Drivers are stable
      • Drivers are easy to find
      • Drivers are reliable
      • Requires less hardware
      • Much more reliable generally
      • Internet Explorer 7 doesn't crash
      • Less need to reboot
      • Ctrl-Alt-Del actually works and can prevent a hard-reset
      • Games are more responsive, have higher frame rates and are more reliable
      • Better multimedia support
      • No DRM
  • Aren't we tired? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by hackingbear (988354) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:33PM (#21711954)

    When are we going to feel tired bashing Vista? Until the next Windows release?

    Come on... I'm not a fan of MS and I'm posting this with Firefox but I have been running Vista on two machines -- one laptop one desktop -- and two machines on XP. i just don't see anything really bad with Vista. If nothing else, it looks more pleasant. In contrast, one of XP machine is running like snail still after several attempts to clean ups, defrags, and registry cleanings; so i don't even want to boot it up anymore.

    Does the extra little candies worth your money? for some here, it is not no matter how good it is. For others, the eye candy worths everything. Isn't that what iPhone is all about?

    • by sayfawa (1099071)
      Did you read the article? Would you care to comment on if you have some of the same problems the author has with Vista? I ask because I'm still trying to decide if I'm going to make the effort to find a new laptop with XP instead of Vista.
  • much longer development cycles between os releases, like 6,8,10 years

    and have MAJOR improvements in the mix

    for example, i think vista was supposed to have a database like file system when i heard whispers of it way back in 2003/4/5

    then i heard that idea got shelved

    hey microsoft: if you shelve major improvements, why would anyone upgrade?

    if they had that db-like filesystem, then in 2-3 years from now, when that os would have been released, everyone would be talking about what a revolutionary leap forward microsoft had on its hands (yes, i know it's really not a groundbreaking idea, but you know how pr and popular opinion works). now, instead, apple is stealing the thunder for having vista like features before microsoft, when it's just faster graphics card eye candy

    windows 95 was such a dramatic step forward from previous iterations

    same with xp (patching up windows nt to release to the public instead of business, as windows xp, to increase stability, was certainly an improvement over win me! again, we're talking pr and popular opinion here)
    • Ballmer read this! (Score:3, Interesting)

      by h4rm0ny (722443)

      much longer development cycles between os releases, like 6,8,10 years

      I'm not disagreeing with you as I've not thought about it enough to say whether my own idea is good or bad, but I think rather than longer development cycles, they might actually need shorter ones. The Linux world seems to make excellent progress with numerous small increments. This of course necessitates a quite modular approach to developing the OS (with the most dramatic example being the separation of OS from Window Manager), but th

  • by plopez (54068) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:38PM (#21711996) Journal
    Hats off to Microsoft for releasing an OS that is obsolete before it even hit the shelves! That's the sort of market driven forward thinking that we have come to expect from such a great company.
    Now only if they would start charging for service packs, that would really add to share holder value.
  • I'm writing to you on my brand new shiny home PC. Box fresh today. When I ordered it, I had to pay £50 to 'upgrade' from Vista home to XP pro.

    This is my principle home machine there was _no_way_ I was going to run Vista on it yet.

    I made sure I got a meaty graphics card for when the time comes though.
  • by edwardpickman (965122) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:40PM (#21712020)
    DOS. None of that shell nonsense. Straight forward computing for the masses! Fast, stable and with no eye candy what so ever.
  • by Zymergy (803632) * on Saturday December 15, 2007 @06:47PM (#21712080)
    Other than DX10.x in Vista for purposefully DX10.x limited specific games releases (HALO 3, et al), what IS the killer app in Vista?
    (Don't flame me man! I am serious, what is the Real "advantage" to Vista for gamers?) What is the performance advantage? Is it designed to fully take advantage of future generations of multiple quad-core processors with 8+GB of RAM and not really current hardware which is not optimized to utilize it?
    Not intending to get into a flame war at all, I have used Vista and I just don't get it.. why the bloat? Why so much DRM? Why specifically break Direct3d and EAX and force the rapid development of OpenAL sound cards and drivers, etc.. Why completely eliminate the look and feel of the UI users have mastered since Win9x/2k (or at least leave a Classic Win2k option for the UI) I play my games in XP and I love it. Once WINE, etc.. can match the performance in gaming of native XP, this discussion will then be between XP and XP emulation.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by smash (1351)
      Killer app for vista? Previous versions. Just two days ago, that would have saved a few thousand dollars worth of data for one of my users - and a few hours of my staff's time checking backups for the data. UAC (like it not, its not that different to entering the root password to run system utilities in Ubuntu or whatever).

      If you lot are bitching about performance, get the fuck over it. In 6 months, it will be irrelevant, just as the performance differences between 95/98/2k and XP are. I currently ru

  • And upgraded to Windows 2000 NT. Seriously. It runs happily on old hardware, an old laptop with 64 MB RAM, 300 Mhz Pentium 3, 2 gig hard disk. I can run most of the apps I throw at it, the few that dont run I dont need on that machine anyway.

    Message to Microsoft: Less == More. Forget the Candy Floss and concentrate on making core API run faster and leaner.
  • by Joe The Dragon (967727) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:01PM (#21712194)
    and even then quite a few apps still dont work with windows 64 and there many printers and other usb stuff that does not have 64 bit drivers?

    M$ do your really need all printers , scanners , and other basic input devices to be forced to be 64 bit?

    and why do you have to pick 32 bit or 64 bit?

    10.5 does not force you to make that choice.
  • I cannot wait... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by gordgekko (574109) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:03PM (#21712206) Homepage
    I cannot wait until the day Windows 7 is rolled out and all the people with their snide Vista comments begin to proclaim Vista to have been the be-all and end-all of Windows OS' and that Windows 7 is a failure on all counts.

    I'll say it if no one else will. I like Vista for the most part. While there are some minor annoyances it has impressed me with its stability and increased security. I'm currently running Vista on a desktop I bought last month but I do plan on purchasing a copy and installing it on my laptop as well.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by jpmorgan (517966)
      Raise your hand if you remember Slashdot falling over itself to talk about how crappy XP was with its activation, and Fisher Price UI, or how it required a shockingly large amount of ram to run well (256MB). Or when Windows 2000 was released, and everybody was obsessed with the supposed 24,000 bugs (from a leaked memo), and that it was the worst Microsoft OS ever.

      I bought a laptop a few months ago with Vista on it. I can't help but wonder if the majority of people bitching about Vista have even used it.

  • by sprior (249994) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:12PM (#21712288) Homepage
    I think it would hit home a lot more if bloggers and technical sites called Windows Vista for what it really is: Windows MPAA edition. It wasn't written for consumers, it was written to satisfy the DRM requirements of the MPAA to be fed to consumers. All that DRM down in the driver level is what is slowing it down.
  • by Tumbleweed (3706) * on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:36PM (#21712440)
    1) If existing OS: run complete antivirus scan and clean existing install, fix everything. Then run a GOOD antivirus scanner (I like Kaspersky), and do it right.

    2) Format system disk.

    3) Install new MS OS (Win2K or better)

    4) Install all updates EXCEPT: .Net

    5) Remove unnecessary schmutz (unneeded services, drivers, games, etc.)

    6) Replace MS MediaPlayer with Media Player Classic.

    7) Do not install any further MS software

    8) Ever.

    9) Seriously, not ever.

    10) It's not that hard, and will very rarely crash.

    11) Oh yeah, don't install too many Adobe apps, either, and keep as much crap from auto-starting as possible (Adobe gamma, Adobe Reader starter, etc.).

    12) Don't use Internet Explorer (any version - the people who tell you IE7 is 'okay' are idiots).

    Put some hardware in between your machine and the Internet at large. Being behind even a simple NAT box will help enormously.

    Enjoy.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Dr_Barnowl (709838)

      12) Don't use Internet Explorer (any version - the people who tell you IE7 is 'okay' are idiots).

      Put some hardware in between your machine and the Internet at large. Being behind even a simple NAT box will help enormously.

      I find these two to be the crux of it ; .NET is actually useful and won't impede normal operations because it doesn't even load unless you load an app that uses it.

      Don't install components you don't use (like IIS). Turn off unnecessary system services. If you have good digital hygiene habits, don't bother with an antivirus. If you have a tidy filesystem, don't bother with indexing (Google Desktop is better anyway).

      The main Windows problem is the profusion of services, in terms of both security and bloat. S

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by J0nne (924579)

      3) Install new MS OS (Win2K or better)
      There's a better MS OS than win 2K?
  • by Master of Transhuman (597628) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @07:50PM (#21712554) Homepage
    Somebody apparently decided to develop an OS on his spare time and released the source code for anybody to improve on.

    I've heard it's taking off like gangbusters.

    Even has a GUI and all.

    Some Finnish kid, though.

    Sounds un-American to me, doing stuff for free. The American way is to pay through the nose for stuff that doesn't work. Gotta buy American or the Chinese will own everything. including the oil. Or maybe the Finnish. (Never gonna use any cell phone except Motorola.)

  • by rabtech (223758) on Saturday December 15, 2007 @08:21PM (#21712814) Homepage
    Vista is really annoying because it has several important, useful, and/or cool features that really make it a better OS, for example:

    1. IO Scheduling - the scheduler now tracks IO requests and priorities, not just CPU time. This is probably my #1 complaint with almost any OS: Any app can bring the system to a crawl by issuing constant disk IO, regardless of how much CPU time it is using. Use up a lot of memory to cause swapping and you can effectively DoS just about any system even with no admin rights whatsoever. But since Vista considers IO in its scheduling a low-priority process can't flood the disk with requests. No technical reason this can't be back-ported to XP.

    2. Hot-patching - long overdue, but at least it is being delivered. Other than swapping out the kernel there is no excuse for rebooting to install or update any subsystem. There is no technical reason why this can't be supported by XP.

    3. User-mode driver framework - Even if we can't have microkernels, at least we can start moving more stuff into user mode. The audio subsystem is one of these. Frankly, except for some very minor pieces, not only should most drivers live in user mode I think most drivers should use a form of managed code as well (perhaps with some deterministic GC or other memory management mechanism). Switching ring levels isn't the massively huge hit it was on older x86 processors. Again, no reason this can't be supported by XP.

    4. DirectX scheduler and video virtualization - long overdue; let the OS virtualize the 3d hardware and dish time out to any app that needs to do some rendering. We've all been over the DirectX 10 scandal before and are well aware that it could be back-ported to XP.

    5. Explorer improvements - more multi-threaded (less blocking) and (FINALLY) it doesn't b0rk an entire file copy job just because one file failed... now you can retry or skip the offending item. Welcome to 1993, apparently.

    6. Pending IO cancellation - the IO subsystem finally understands how to cancel pending IOs. Ever had a zombie process that wouldn't go away, even though you did an End Process or kill on it? It probably had an incomplete network or disk IO request out there, but under XP and earlier Windows can't cleanup the process until all the IOs are finished. In Vista the IO subsystem understands how to cancel the IO, or if it can't be cancelled will automatically take care of cleaning it up when it returns... no need for the process to stick around waiting on a request to complete that it doesn't give a shit about. Again, this should have been part of an XP service pack.

    7. Async SMB/Net - All the SMB/Net calls and apps support async IO now, so you can finally CTRL+C a 'net view \\machine' command and have it terminate immediately, instead of having to wait 60 seconds for that CTRL+C to register while the network operation is blocking. This one I can't even understand... Windows has supported non-blocking IO since the original NT. IO Completion Ports (essentially callbacks when an IO operation is complete) are fast and used throughout Windows for all sorts of things. Except in this one area.

    8. Kernel transactions - now the Registry and supported filesystems (NTFS), along with any subsystem or kernel object that cares to implement support for it, can participate in transactions. This one makes installations far easier and simpler - just run all your registry and file updates inside a transaction and commit when done. Also makes hot-patching support easier, since running processes keep their open handles to the previous version of the file prior to the transaction. All filesystem should have supported transactions in like 1995; no idea why it has taken this long.

    9. Shadow Copies exposed - this one is really dumb; XP already supports shadow copies, it just doesn't expose them to you. Again, something we should have seen on clients several years ago when disk space started getting really cheap. Empty sectors on a disk are like empty blocks of memory: a complete waste. Just as ever
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by ledow (319597)
      Not aimed at the poster directly:

      Vista *is* really annoying because it has several important, useful, and/or cool features that really make it a better OS, that everyone else has had for years, if not decades, for example, let's take a basic Linux system (yeah, I know, flame me but people praising Vista for historical, if not archaic, "features" is really beginning to get on my nerves):

      1. IO Scheduling - In the versions of Linux I've personally used, (2.0.30-something up to current), no app can bring the sy
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by Junta (36770)
        1. IO scheduling is a relatively recent addition to the Linux world as well. IO operations could very much screw over the performance the CPU scheduler was trying to create. It's just that those cases at least under linux were a bit more corner case, but you could definitely run into issues with IO load and notice particularly in real-time apps (i.e. a movie player).

        2. Hot patching - I think this has been *possible* under Windows architecture, it's just that MS has been overcautious and lazy, not realizin
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Foolhardy (664051)
      Responding by number:

      1. IO priorities. Yes, these are quite nice, although it'd be nice if more than 2 priorities were implemented (currently only background and normal are supported). Memory priorities are new in Vista as well, and are also quite useful.

      3. Much of the UMDF has been backported to XP as a redistributable [microsoft.com].

      6. IO cancellation. The NT kernel has always supported cancellation of pending async IRPs. The kernel always tries to cancel pending IRPs in a dying process so it can be terminated.
  • by nsayer (86181) * <nsayer@kfCOWu.com minus herbivore> on Saturday December 15, 2007 @10:42PM (#21713694) Homepage
    I don't see the problem. Why, this guy [youtube.com] was able to install it in only a couple minutes.

  • by Proudrooster (580120) on Sunday December 16, 2007 @12:17AM (#21714206) Homepage
    I took the VISTA plunge (as a test) on a new laptop. I plan to upgrade to XP over Christmas break. VISTA drivers are still pretty rough and have crash issues. I think I finally have achieved a stable laptop with no blue screens, but system performance is an issue. VISTA just idling consumes about 10% of the CPU, not to mention it is always waking the harddrive up. Amazingly, VISTA (the new king of all multimedia) doesn't have a built-in app that uses a USB webcam... very strange.

    My biggest beef is that the VISTA System Recovery software doesn't work. I did a complete VISTA backup to DVD and wanted to test a system restore. I booted the VISTA CD and selected Restore Entire System but the restore software doesn't recognize the DVD backup set. This irked me since laptops no longer come with restore media, so I guess it is back to Ghost.

    My feeling is that VISTA is much akin to Windows ME which was the retarded cousin on Win98. Everyone knows that VISTA is a hyperactive drooling OS and most will just take a step back and see what MS churns out next, or move to Ubuntu. At least my plan is to put VISTA back in the box and ignore it.
  • by Teisei (1172661) on Sunday December 16, 2007 @06:58AM (#21715834)
    They've made XP too good. Hey wait, there's "Service Pack" 3 coming.

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