Posted by: wpd | June 26, 2006

A month with Windows Vista Beta 2

For the last 7 years I’ve been inside the walls of Microsoft. I’ve build my entire network and applications to leverage Microsoft technologies. At some points I’ve contemplated the idea of possibly working for them. However, those days are gone.

This is as much as a review as it is my experience with losing confidence in the largest software company in the world. Enter Windows Vista. Probably the single biggest disappointment to date from Redmond.

Cool factor:

  • live search – by far the only feature I use ALL THE TIME. I’d never leave XP if it had it. I mean that I’d have to reason to upgrade my OS for my computer @ work. 😉
  • The fonts look better.
  • The screen and icons are proportioned correctly not matter what resolution your monitor is set to.

That’s it now for the rants:

  • The sidebar has gadgets
    • It doesn’t auto hide — you have to double click a link on the task bar to make it appear and hide
    • You can’t put anything else on the sidebar. No links or short cuts or notes … nothing!
  • Seems like I had to do a lot more mouse clicking than I did in XP.
  • Cannot read or print PDF’s by default.
  • Cannot play DVD movies by default. This just boggles my mind!
  • Aero-glass doesn’t really change your user experience. There’s no function for their form. For instance, in OS X the eye candy really does meet a function. Think of Vista as XP with a face lift. Ok, I’ll admit that the slow-mo minimizing in OS X is probably not really functional. It’s what you would expect from a well integrated system. 🙂
  • Maybe it because OS X can make your terminal experience fun or even cool. Which is a funny thing, because, Windows users are trying to forget the DOS prompt and OS X users are learning it’s power!
  • When the system is idle the hard drive goes crazy.
  • Windows Photo is a joke compared to iPhoto.
  • Windows DVD maker- I had some graphic card issues with it and I couldn’t get it to run. Funny how my 700Mhz PPC Mac can make a DVD no problem but my 3Ghz Pent 4 can’t.
  • Windows Movie Maker – Same issues with my graphics card. I’ll report on this later.


The only reason that I’d use Vista is for the live search. It saves me a ton of time. Oh, and the fact that a new OS won’t have all those stinking updates <yet>. MS is still 5 or so years behind the OS curve.

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  1. I agree Microsoft is still behind the OS curve.. I have the beta of vista and it seems like windows xp with a face lift. nothing really added to the os that blows my mind… it does not really have any major catch factor to upgrade to it from windows xp… the only reason why im really interested in it is because of the 64 bit version of the os

  2. The 64 bit version is nice to run. I have installed it and played with it a bit. The issues are foundational. Drivers for all hardware and devices HAVE to 64 in order for it to work.

    So basically, they had to rewrite the OS. It also appears that Microsoft is quickly working on Fiji ( and Vienna.

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