The Microsoft Roadmap – Past, Present, And Future



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Lowell J. Haffner


 Vista is a product that is designed for the early adopter crowd and gamers. It doesn't offer the WINFS file system promised. It attempts to force the world to upgrade their hardware so it will "work fine", after working with Intel to install it on underpowered new systems that couldn't carry the weight. It is too expensive for a full featured version and if you go with a limited feature version, you have less features than XP, and you don't have their biggest selling point - Aero Glass. Since the world hasn't embraced it just because Mirosoft tells them to, they are starting to shut down the previous OS to force the consumer to move over to Vista. There are difficulties with networking, I know this because I went to IT at work and they told me to try things I'd already tried. They aren't planning to make the transition to Vista. I don't know what kind of Kool-aid Ballmer is selling but to sell a product by offering nothing useful, requiring a hardware upgrade to make it perform as well as XP, and then twist your arm by taking XP away when it is still functioning well for the consumer, smacks of the low-brow, calloused-knuckle crowd. Do it or else.



Well, given my recent exposure to a company that released a new version of a piece of software with less functionality than the previous version and yet still managed to call it an "upgrade"...  Maybe my perception of Vista is a little more forgiving than it should be.

But I don't think it's that bad.

I think Justin (author) hit it right on the head with the whole perception thing. I would estimate that at least 80% of those average users who hate Vista could not cite a specific reason why they do.  They've just been convinced by Apple or perhaps a more knowledgable friend (because there *are* legitimate reasons to hate Vista, and I do know some people that bring up some valid reasons) that they should hate it.

Another possible (and highly unscientific) theory is that a lot of the "Vista is slow" perception is popular software catching up with popular hardware.  Yes, I have seen the benchmarks that establish that Vista's performance is hampered from XP's in some areas.  I just think that there's a different problem here.  Just as an example, I'm writing this from a laptop with a modest Intel dual-core and Intel's craptastic integrated chipset.  My performance is perfectly acceptable in most tasks. But have you ever tried, say, playing a recent popular gaming title on integrated graphics? It's terrible - and that's not Vista's fault.  The thing is, I think we're seeing lots of other things that tax your system (that aren't just games) becoming more mainstream...  And the average user just doesn't get why it's different.  They expect everything to be as fast as it used to be - when they had XP.  The thing is, even on XP some of these things wouldn't be any better...  But the fact that "well, stuff used to be so much faster" is being associated with XP, when it fact it could well have just been lower hardware demands from the software.



I'm inclined to agree with you, alot of the 'I hate Vista' crowd is basing their opinion on misconceptions and also the majority of them are running on archaic desktop (sub-2.0ghz CPUs, 1gb ram, < 250gb HD) and laptop (pre 1.8ghz Pentium M/1.4ghz core duo, 1gb ram, <120gb HD) hardware. I hate it when most people assume something will work on their 5 year old junker because it meets the minimum requirements. That's the thing, if you just meet the minimum reqs, it's gonna run like shit. I can run Vista on my 2 year-old Core 2 Duo laptop just fine. Granted, I only have 1gb of RAM, but it's not shared as I do have a 128mb dedicated nVidia GeForce Go series graphics chip. Also, trimming some of the fat out of Vista isn't all that hard.

Here's a quick Spec sheet for my laptop:
1.66ghz Core 2 Duo CPU with 2mb L2 cache
1gb DDR2 ram @ 667mhz/Dual Channel (Max 3gb)
128mb GeForce Go Graphics Chipset
120gb HD - 5400rpm Hitachi
Intel 3945 ABG Wi-Fi adapter
Marvell Yukon 10/100 PCI-E Fast Ethernet
4x USB 2.0 Ports
1x Mini FireWire port (Texas Instruments Controller)
Sigmatel Hi-Def Audio Codec

- mike_art03a
IT Technician
Gov't of Canada



As far as I can tell, critcism of Vista  falls into three basic cataegoies: performance, driver & software incompatibility, and the UAC.

Performance is legitimate I suppose, but not if you have a decent machine. The vast majority of driver and software issues have been solved, and  if UAC really bugs you it's not difficult to turn off.

Vista is just Windows with a slightly different front end. It's not significantly better or worse than XP. I don't particulrily like it, but unless we start to see a massive increase in games designed to run on Linux in native mode, Windows is what I'll be running on my main PC.




I think your right on with the perception the difrent windows syatems ive personally had both XP and vista and there "pretty" nice as described by the article but i cant wiat for "windows 7"



The main reason for Vista's slow adoption is that it doesn't really do anything you can't do in XP. Install Google Desktop or Live search, upgrade to IE7 and Windows Media Player 11, and suddenly, you've got a lot of Vista's functionality in XP.

Plus, I think XP's control panel items (the "classic view") makes a lot more sense than Vista's. It took me about 20 minutes just to figure out how to assign a static IP in Vista, and another 5 to figure out what happened to Add/Remove Programs.

Then there's UAC. Sure, you can turn it off, but if it's supposed to be the feature that makes it more secure than XP, why upgrade? I think instead of having annoying popups every time you try to do something remotely dangerous, it would be much more effective to have a big red dialog come up and ask you for your administrator password only when a program wants to modify the registry or your browser in such a way that it causes a new program to run every time your computer or browser starts up. Most of the programs you install do not do this, and this may be undesirable even with legitimate programs. This way, if you get some kind of bug, it's gone the next time you reboot.



 I still don't understand why everyone keeps using the Term "Bloat" on Vista.  Sure on a fresh install there is a lot of useless stuff.  But I have gotten it to the point now (By disabling, removing components and shaving it down) where I can get Vista to run pretty much like XP did.  Vista is fine, people need to learn how to set it up for their needs and shave some of the "bloat" off and quit bitching about it.



Mobo: MSI P6N-Diamond nForce 680 SLI
CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo E6850 @ 3.42GHz
RAM: 2GB Corsair Dominator PC8500 DDR2 @ 1110MHz
GPU: eVGA GeForce 8800 GTX
Case: Lian Li PC-75B Custom modded
HDD: 2 Maxtor 120GB SATA in RAID 0 - 1 Seagate 750GB



Dude, you shouldnt have to take a lot of time to get ride of the bloat that shouldnt  be there. vista was a mistake. now, i hope linux  steals the show.



They still don't seem to "get it". "blah blah... faster performance, etc." SLOWER performance on identically installed systems with 'equally mature' drivers. Fact: Quad Core Q6600, 4GB RAM, 2x500GB RAID 0 with hardware based RAID, etc. copies files MUCH SLOWER than a P4 1.7GHz, 20GB Maxtor 7200RPM ATA66 drive running FreeBSD. This was a situation I put my friends in, to prove how horrible Vista's code bloat and poor design "performs". You'd think with today's best hardware versus yesterday's old and used hardware that even if good code vs. 'bad code' were to be tested, that the hardware would make up for it.


It doesn't. Rather, my problem isn't Vista sucking, it's that Vista isn't what it was. Explanation- Vista will include an entirely new FS, self-healing, little to no fragmentation, run faster on new hardware, improve security by design, etc, etc. Basically Microsoft was going to catch up to the best from Linux and *BSD (Apple included of course) and possibly surpase them given their user base.


Instead Microsoft reintroduced redundant windows (Window A opens, click on a button, Window B opens, click on another button and you get Window A AGAIN! XP doesn't do this, nor does any properly engineered OS) and destroyed any performance aspirations with apparently 'code bloat'. I couldn't tell because I don't see the source code, but I do know there are inherent design flaws somewhere in the code.


Anyhow, that's my tirade. 

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