When the first reports of Vista came in I remember thinking that it resembled much of Windows XPís introduction; basically a host of new features, better compatibility and the stability of Windows 2000 all integrated into one. The first few betas of Vista looked promising too; lots of cool and worthwhile new features and a graphic interface that started looking better with every new release. After having just installed the latest release a few hours ago Iím wondering where Microsoft went wrong? As with every release Iíve seen cool features get dropped and nothing substantial added. All that Iím looking at here is an OS that looks like a spit-shined and polished version of Windows XP. Oh wait, thereís but one clear distinction to be made; a system that runs Windows XP at blistering speeds slows down to a crawl when running Vista.
Theyíre the kind of slow-downs you canít really appreciate, such as clicking on a program and having the system take about 10-seconds for it to start, whilst basically freezing up when accomplishing this task. I mean, I can appreciate the fact that Microsoftís coders took time and effort to make things look somewhat nicer, but really, havenít they forgot about making it more efficient as well? Iím sure AMD, Intel and other hardware manufacturers wonít mind, as thereíll be hosts of people wanting to buy their new hardware when Vista finally hits the shelves. But really, is that all there is to it? Is Vista no more than a sales tool for computer hardware? Isnít software supposed to get smarter and more efficient with every new release? Thatís what every Ďself respectingí coder would agree to Iím sure, but this golden rule seems not to apply to Microsoftís products.
Letís take Microsoft Office for example, with every new Office product Iíve seen the install size grow exponentially and the feature list only marginally. Yet system requirements more or less keep trend with the install size. It is as if thereís an equation governing these requirements that holdís true for every new Microsoftís product that gets launched. In the past this has significantly boosted PC sales, as was evident from Windows XPís launch. Windows XP however was a worthwhile upgrade for í98 and ME users as it added a host of features and hardware support not found in either of those operating systems.
Vista seems to offer none, or very little, of that, as Windows XP has matured immensely since its introduction in í01. Today, with all of the patches and service packs that have been released to supplement it, it is the best OS Microsoft has ever released. It is feature packed, bug fixed, up to date and widely accepted worldwide, what more can you ask for? With the current state of affairs Vista cannot even be considered an upgrade, simply because it downgrades the hardware to a level that the end-user needs to upgrade it to get the performance level up to where it was before.
So youíll not only end up upgrading your hardware, youíll also have to spend a considerable amount of money for a new OS that basically has no desirable features added save for a nicer looking interface. So really, whereís the progress if installing a new operating system to your harddisk turns a previously nimble and fast PC into one that begs for a hardware upgrade? The few added features, or the new spit-shined graphic interface are hardly worth spending serious money on, as that is what most people will be looking at, with PCs that now run Windows XP with satisfactionary performance.