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Microsoft Manager Says Vista Has Issues

By - Source: Tom's Hardware | B 145 comments

It isn’t easy being Windows Vista, living with the stigma of being inferior to its predecessor.

Much of the public carries with it even today the opinion that Windows Vista is the undesirable choice for a PC operating system, despite Microsoft’s best efforts.

In fairness, Windows Vista got off on the wrong foot when it launched in early 2007. Microsoft knows this, but for obvious reasons must downplay many of the operating system’s issues. It is for that reason, then, that it surprised many that a “high-ranking Windows product manager” spoke to Maximum PC in mid-June about Vista’s teething problems.

The Microsoft employee detailed several key issues that plagued the early days, many of which can be attributed to bad GPU drivers from Nvidia. While it would be unwise for Microsoft to point the finger at a major hardware partner, internal Microsoft memos put 18 percent of all Vista crashes around launch time as a result of unstable Nvidia drivers.

Along with unstable drivers, gamers had a reason to be especially disappointed with the OS as games ran better and faster on Windows XP. Moving to the newer OS was often a dramatic downgrade in performance. The source told Maximum PC that “spending the money to port DirectX 10 to Windows XP would have been worth the expense.” Even more crushing might be his view on the Games for Windows initiative, calling it “a disaster, with nothing more than 64-bit compatibility for games to show for years of effort.”

The source also conceded that Apple’s control over the software and hardware side allows it to avoid such compatibility problems, making Macs more and more appealing to consumers.

Windows Vista also annoyed users quickly with its User Account Control, prompting users at every change made to the system. Vista users have become so accustomed to clicking “allow” on all warnings that one has to wonder if the system is really that much more secure when factoring user habits.

According to Erik Lustig, a senior product manager responsible for Windows Fundamentals, Windows Vista is the most secure Microsoft operating system to date, validating some of the design choices. For the move from XP to Vista, Lustig said Microsoft made “changes that have had some short-term ramifications that we’ve worked very hard the last year and a half, and through Service Pack 1, to address. ... I believe that those changes are going to be a fundamental basis for the integrity of the platform.”

Perhaps the biggest shortcoming of Windows Vista is that it launched before it was fully ready. While many users still maintain their preference for Windows XP, few may realize how far Vista has come thanks to Service Pack 1.

With half a year already under Windows Vista SP1’s belt, the operating system is now performing at levels expected of it at launch. Windows Vista is now stable, fast and perhaps most importantly, more secure. It’s unfortunate then, that most current Windows XP users won’t see the strides made by Microsoft until the launch of Windows 7.

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Top Comments
  • 14 Hide
    jj463rd , September 12, 2008 10:18 PM
    The worst part about Vista and XP is activation (DRM).I still prefer Windows 2000 Pro.
    I truly hate DRM.
  • 12 Hide
    bardia , September 12, 2008 10:04 PM
    For all those people saying "there is no reason to upgrade from XP." I've got news for you... there is "no reason" to upgrade to XP from 2000.

    Vista is more of the same (and by that I mean improvements), but it isn't going to do your laundry and find you a girlfriend to do it for you.

    DX10, security, stability, easy of use, aesthetics, etc. Vista is in every way superior to XP if you have a remotely decent computer.
  • 12 Hide
    Anonymous , September 12, 2008 8:44 PM
    I'm so surprised that so many people complain about UAC but in the mean time praising Mac/Linux (Ubuntu). The reality is Mac and Linux also UAC and they also prompt the dialog box for admin tasks. And even worse, on Mac and Linux it requires to enter your password everytime and it cannot be turned off. Apparently those people have never used a Mac or Linux
Other Comments
    Display all 145 comments.
  • -5 Hide
    the_one111 , September 12, 2008 7:58 PM
    Then turn UAC off... Get something better than one gig of ram the media center is fine... if you dont like it go back to the old media center (which vista has). File management IS slow, but not as slow as xp's or mac's

    That post was retarded, all you did was whine about the NEW features that are "glitchy" if even that! what about all the "old" xp features that STILL WORK.

    Don't listen to the Macophillias. Vista owns.

  • 6 Hide
    chaohsiangchen , September 12, 2008 8:13 PM
    I had some problem with my home machine running Vista at the beginning. The system runs better after SP1. Actually, a lot better. Vista seems to take control of 1/3 of memory no matter how much one has. With 2GB, it took control over 1/3; and with 4GB, it still takes 1/3. The hard drive space for Vista is insane (40GB). There is no excuse for that.
  • 0 Hide
    chaohsiangchen , September 12, 2008 8:14 PM
    I actually like UAC. It is the way it should have been 10 years ago. Though M$'s implementation is just annoying, and they should learn how it was done by Spybot.
  • 2 Hide
    deminicus , September 12, 2008 8:21 PM
    People need to clarify what they mean by "resource hog". If they mean the memory footprint then I think there is a lack of understanding. Vista uses free memory and does useful stuff with it. It also throttles it, so when you load a large app/game it will shrink its footprint.

    Granted vista isn't the most amazing thing ever....ever but it is better than xp in many areas. I personally don't need or want to go back to xp, I am surprised to say that. I was weary before I switched but after some extensive research I found it was time to move on.
  • 9 Hide
    nukemaster , September 12, 2008 8:30 PM
    The biggest launch issue for Vista was Nvidia. Sorry to say, but its true. The drivers took well over a year to work out most of the bugs. They had the new driver model long before Vista released, but they chose to not bother working in it in advanced.

    Games now run practically(its almost within the margin or error now) identical on Vista and XP.

    One thing some do not understand is having lots of memory not to use it is a waste. So when Vista decides to cache up all your free ram to preload apps you use often, is it really a memory hog? It takes no more then the percentage difference from 98 to XP did.

    Anyone remember how bugged XP was at launch?
  • 2 Hide
    deminicus , September 12, 2008 8:30 PM
    chaohsiangchenI actually like UAC. It is the way it should have been 10 years ago. Though M$'s implementation is just annoying, and they should learn how it was done by Spybot.


    personally I have it turned off but I know what you are saying. It has potential. They just need to make it less annoying. I hear the reason it's tough todo is that vista has to take into account backward compatibility and crappy coding practices
  • 12 Hide
    jameshan2k , September 12, 2008 8:32 PM
    The biggest issue with Vista is the Hardware Vendors. They sell dirt cheap computers with horrible video chipsets, only 512 to 1024MB of RAM & then load the OS with a ton of crap offers/"free" software. The customer then gets pissed & blames Microsoft saying Vista sucks & Macs are better. If they spent a little extra cash on RAM & uninstalled the crap software they would see the benefits of Vista.

    I'm running Vista Ultimate 64 Bit with 8GB's of RAM ($180) & I'm quite happy....haven't rebooted in Months.
  • -4 Hide
    Anonymous , September 12, 2008 8:32 PM
    After using Vista with and without SP1 at work, I can safely say that I'll stick to XP until MS manages to force me out of it. There is no logical reason to upgrade. None.
  • 12 Hide
    Anonymous , September 12, 2008 8:44 PM
    I'm so surprised that so many people complain about UAC but in the mean time praising Mac/Linux (Ubuntu). The reality is Mac and Linux also UAC and they also prompt the dialog box for admin tasks. And even worse, on Mac and Linux it requires to enter your password everytime and it cannot be turned off. Apparently those people have never used a Mac or Linux
  • -4 Hide
    jaragon13 , September 12, 2008 9:12 PM
    mojoman94I'm a software engineer who's used every Microsoft OS since Win 3.1 and I have Vista Ultimate http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Vista w/SP1 on my HP Quad core rig and to be honest Vista isn't worth it. It's a resource hog, the UAC is annoying, file management is slow and sometimes even seems to just hang for a moment. The media center doesn't work as well as commerical applications. I'm going back to XP. Vista is an embarassment.

    Horse shit.He doesn't know what's he talking about.Everybody give him a thumbs down.

    "Many of which can be attributed to bad GPU drivers from Nvidia nvidia . While it would be unwise for Microsoft to point the finger at a major hardware partner, internal Microsoft memos put 18 percent of all Vista crashes around launch time as a result of unstable Nvidia drivers."
    Typo? Also,this is the reason I use ATi,their drivers always support the newest technologies with as few errors as possible - and yes,I do have both Nvidia and ATi graphics cards,ATi tends to be more acceptable.
  • 1 Hide
    gzhang , September 12, 2008 9:27 PM
    I don't like vista either.

    The upside:
    1. pretty graphics.
    2. UAC that runs every program on low privilege.

    The downside:
    1. Slow File system! Much slower when copying files from network share than XP (at least in my experience).

    2. Bad UAC design. I have to keep clicking OK ever step of the way. After a while it became the normal and I will click OK on viruses. On XP/Linux you can just use a low privilege account. I always use low privileged accounts for development/games/web browsing etc. I fail to see why UAC is necessary. If microsoft really wants a robust system, it should make the security granular, like selinux, you can specify which operation is allowed every step of the way.
  • 3 Hide
    one-shot , September 12, 2008 10:04 PM
    So it looks like 2 features that aren't what they should be and now the whole OS is condemned. Doesn't make sense to me, I switched from XP Pro to Vista Home Prem 64bit SP1 and wouldn't move back to XP. I so far haven't encounted any problems. It runs great and I have no complaints. I also have 4gb of ram.
  • 12 Hide
    bardia , September 12, 2008 10:04 PM
    For all those people saying "there is no reason to upgrade from XP." I've got news for you... there is "no reason" to upgrade to XP from 2000.

    Vista is more of the same (and by that I mean improvements), but it isn't going to do your laundry and find you a girlfriend to do it for you.

    DX10, security, stability, easy of use, aesthetics, etc. Vista is in every way superior to XP if you have a remotely decent computer.
  • 2 Hide
    the_one111 , September 12, 2008 10:05 PM
    franksI'm so surprised that so many people complain about UAC but in the mean time praising Mac/Linux (Ubuntu). The reality is Mac and Linux also UAC and they also prompt the dialog box for admin tasks. And even worse, on Mac and Linux it requires to enter your password everytime and it cannot be turned off. Apparently those people have never used a Mac or Linux

    "Smartest man on earth, next to the other two guys who know some basic computer knowledge here.." lol

    Vista just had a unlucky run, because of Nvidia, and because Shrapple (definition of shrapple: Sucky-He11-raising-Ripoff APPLE) had so many unlogical and unfactual ads bashing it at the time, and because we have so many gulible computer illiterate idoits that actually LISTENED to a COMPANY selling them a $1000+ product!

    Now THAT requires you to hold your sign high!
  • 0 Hide
    zaratustra06 , September 12, 2008 10:10 PM
    Vista is epic fail in business use - you couldn't even install Microsoft SQL 2005 on Vista without troubles when Vista launched. Ridiculous file copying over network, like half hour for a few Mb file. CD's burned on Vista unreadable on XP machines etc,etc...
  • 14 Hide
    jj463rd , September 12, 2008 10:18 PM
    The worst part about Vista and XP is activation (DRM).I still prefer Windows 2000 Pro.
    I truly hate DRM.
  • 2 Hide
    nukemaster , September 12, 2008 10:20 PM
    Quote:

    1. Slow File system! Much slower when copying files from network share than XP (at least in my experience).


    Fixed in SP1 I get the same speeds with XP and Vista :) 
  • 2 Hide
    giovanni86 , September 12, 2008 10:32 PM
    I believe vista is a upgrade towards gamers, buisness wise i don't think it does a buisness any good. I have yet to own vista so idk if i am right or wrong as of yet. Running Win XP64-bit and i like it, just wish my CS:CZ would work on it=/.
  • -2 Hide
    frozenlead , September 12, 2008 10:33 PM
    So, I read this article, and every paragraph except for the last one beat vista down for all the crap that went on before sp1. What the hell?

    If an update comes out, why still complain about the old version?

    The OS runs fine now. Mine uses less than 1/4 of my 4GB of ram.

    The OS runs like crud on machines you can buy because vendors load them with low ram and tons of crappy freeware that all starts when windows boots. If your machine is running with no-crap-attached, even if it does have 512MB of ram, it runs just as fast as windows XP with 512mb of ram.

    Good god people, Vista is an excellent operating system now. get used to it. There's no reason to keep XP, and no reason to switch to a mac.
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