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Ten Reasons to Buy Windows Vista 851

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the lesser-of-evils dept.
pennconservative writes "Michael Desmond, writing for PCWorld.com, gives us ten reasons to buy the next version of Microsoft Windows. Some of his reasons sound compelling, and it definitely sounds like Microsoft has found yet another way to ensure market dominance for a few more years. Desmond also gives a few reasons not to buy Vista, but the most compelling of those is the hardware required to run it. Since Vista will likely ship on every new computer anyone buys, I don't see that being a major roadblock."
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Ten Reasons to Buy Windows Vista

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  • by mrchaotica (681592) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:24PM (#14749973)
    DRM. Why would you pay for your own shackles?
    • by waveclaw (43274) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:35PM (#14750049) Homepage Journal
      DRM. Why would you pay for your own shackles?

      Avereage Joe: But they were sooooo shiny! And look at all the pretty 'features.' And everyone's getting or got a pair! Besides, they go so well with my gamer clothes...I mean work suit.

      The number one and number two reason people will buy Vista: it will come on their new PC and it will play all the video games sold for PC (that Average Joe cares about.) You can talk about 'compatibility' with work, but Windows 98 with Office 97 is all that takes for most cases. As soon as Duke Nukem comes out, you can be sure it will have a 'Made for Microsoft Windows Vista' sticker on it.
      • by ichigo 2.0 (900288) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:52PM (#14750168)
        As soon as Duke Nukem comes out, you can be sure it will have a 'Made for Microsoft Windows Vista' sticker on it.

        Are you serious? When DNF comes out Microsoft will have dropped support for legacy OS's like Vista!
        • by Nirvelli (851945) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @05:31PM (#14751785)
          1. Security, security, security: New holes, new holes, new holes.

          2. Internet Explorer 7: GetFirefox [getfirefox.com].

          3. Righteous eye candy: Ooohhh shiny...

          4. Desktop search: Learn to organize.

          5. Better updates: Why update? Because it was broken in the first place!

          6. More media: More DRM!

          7. Parental controls: Real parents don't need an OS to babysit their kids.

          8. Better backups: Already have that.

          9. Peer-to-peer collaboration: ???

          10. Quick setup: Why am I running setup more than once anyways?

          In short, 10 compelling reasons why you don't need to upgrade to Vista.
          • by Anonymous Brave Guy (457657) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @07:10PM (#14752265)

            I was thinking much the same. For example, when I read this...

            Translucent icons, program windows, and other elements not only look cool, they add depth and context to the interface.

            ...I thought most usability research had pretty much thrown out this sort of visual jiggery-pokery some time ago now, having discovered that since monitors are basically flat, 2D surfaces, trying to project things in funky 3D or to impose layers through transparency just disorientates users. It's always possible that Microsoft have come up with a new and qualitatively different approach to that of the research labs at other big software places like Sun or IBM, of course, but I'm betting heavily on "gimmick" until I see any evidence to the contrary.

            It seems to me that the vast majority of the 10 "reasons to buy" have already been more than adequately addressed on Windows platforms by third party software, some of which will presumably still be necessary since it sounds like MS isn't going to include any anti-virus software unless you pay for it. On other platforms, it either was never an issue, or is likewise addressed by third party add-ons. Putting it into the OS may or may not be an advantage relative to starting with nothing, but relative to where we are, who cares?

            Of the remainder, if they're genuinely getting serious about security, that's great, but on the flip-side, we all know about the Trusted Computing rubbish, DRM, and all that jazz. On top of that, we have the recent stories about national governments wanting backdoors and entering talks with Microsoft to ensure they get them. If a government cracker can break my system, so can a script kiddie with the right friends, and that's game over for Microsoft's security drive. It's not secure if it has deliberate backdoors!

            The more I read about Vista, the less I care, and I'm someone who (at present) does run XP both at home and at work, and uses some OSS for practical rather than philosophical reasons. I've been looking seriously at shifting to an alternative platform for a while, and with all the security and DRM badness going around lately, the obvious commercial alternative -- Apple -- is pretty much ruled out of the game by its own actions. This could be the best thing to happen to open source software since forever.

    • by Junior J. Junior III (192702) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:42PM (#14750099) Homepage
      Gates: "It puts the shackles on its wrist, or it gets the hose again."

      Ballmer: Put the fucking shackles on your wrists! Or I'll fucking kill you!!! (Throws chair.)
    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:45PM (#14750123)
      Don't forget the bi-directional firewall... wooooooh. Go Microsoft... innovation, innovation, innovation!
    • DRM. Why would you pay for your own shackles?

      Because then I get to pick the color.
    • Also the same reason not to get a Mac.
    • by Mr. Bad Example (31092) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:43PM (#14750508) Homepage
      > Why would you pay for your own shackles?

      Because my wife complained that the garbage bag zip ties were irritating her wrists.

    • Why would you pay for your own shackles?

      You've obviously never dated a gal like the one I dated when I was 28.
    • by aj50 (789101) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @04:21PM (#14751379)
      DRM shackles you whether your computer supports it or not.

      If your computer doesn't support drm, then you can't see the content at all. Your system not supporting drm does not magically make all drm protected content play without restrictions. If drm is widespread, then you receive all the disadvantages of drm and none of the benefits (eg. more content being offered online).

      The only good thing is if few people have drm then it is harder to distribute drm'd content but if by having a computer that doesn't support drm you are in the minority, there is no direct benefit to you.

  • So... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by TERdON (862570) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:24PM (#14749974) Homepage
    what feature will I get that I don't already have in Mac OS X 10.4?

    I skimmed the list rapidly and I'm already using the equivalents to at least half of them, probably more (I wrote "skimmed"). Some of the features I have even used for several years...
    • Not really. (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Alcimedes (398213) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:32PM (#14750028)
      I actually read though the list, and other than the last three options. (backups, install times, live shared docs) the other 7 were options I've been using for years on Macs.

      Granted, not that I'm not happy that Windows is catching up, but I thought it was funny that to me at least, the only new features were the last three listed. All of which sounded very interesting.

      Cupertino, start your copiers!
    • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by tpgp (48001) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:35PM (#14750055) Homepage
      what feature will I get that I don't already have in Mac OS X 10.4?

      The ability to run specific win32 apps.

      That is the only difference.

      As you've noted that most of the features in Vista (Music management / photo management / drm / desktop search / etc are already present (or have equivilants) in OS X.
      • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by mrchaotica (681592) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:50PM (#14750150)
        The ability to run specific win32 apps.
        Go, go, gadget Darwine! [opendarwin.org]
      • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by JonTurner (178845) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:54PM (#14750187) Journal
        >>As you've noted that most of the features in Vista (Music management / photo management / drm / desktop search / etc are already present (or have equivilants) in OS X.

        Not to put too fine a point on it, but i would say, not only are they available, on Mac OS X, they are superior. iTunes, GarageBand, Final Cut, iDVD. Etc. Apple's been shipping this stuff for years. MSFT's just talking about what they hope to release, and talk is cheap.

        Given Microsoft's tendancy to cut features like a boot camp barber cuts hair, I'm not too hopeful everything's going to make it to the final release.
        • Counterpoint (Score:4, Informative)

          by winkydink (650484) * <sv.dude@gmail.com> on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:25PM (#14750404) Homepage Journal
          DVDDecrypter, DVDShrink, Quicken.

          There are some dvd rip&burn apps for the Mac, but noe that I have tried come close to these two Windows apps. Quicken for the Mac is a waste of good disk space. And neither GnuCash nor Moneydance come close to offerring the full feature set of Quicken for Windows.

          I have migrated and consolidated all of my Windows/Linux/Mac stuff onto a new iMac. The aforementioned 3 apps, keep me from shutting off the Windows machine.
    • Re:So... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Dominic_Mazzoni (125164) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:11PM (#14750290) Homepage
      Let's compare to Mac OS X, shall we?

      1. Security, security, security: (Mac OS X: check) bidirectional software firewall (check), Windows Services Hardening, which prevents obscure background processes from being hijacked and changing your system (no, but it's not clear that this is needed on Mac OS X now). There's also full-disk encryption (check)...User Account Protection, which invokes administrator privileges as needed(check).

      2. Internet Explorer 7 (check - Safari does all that IE 7 does and more),

      3. Righteous eye candy (check - Mac OS X is way ahead here)

      4. Desktop search (check - Spotlight)

      5. Better updates (check - Software Update)

      6. More media (check - iTunes, iPhoto, etc.)

      7. Parental controls (check - see the System Preferences)

      8. Better backups (OK, Apple doesn't include a backup utility unless you purchase dot-Mac)

      9. Peer-to-peer collaboration (check - Bonjour, aka Rendezvous)

      10. Quick setup (this isn't as much a feature as it is getting rid of bottlenecks in Windows - not needed

      Again, nothing wrong with any of these features - but where is Microsoft innovating?
      • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

        by ScrewMaster (602015) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:22PM (#14750365)
        Innovation has nothing to do with it. This is merely a response to market pressure. That's the only pressure to which Microsoft ever responds. They don't need to be a technological leader ... they only have to be the market leader, which means they can just satisfy the current top "n" complaints about Windows to keep selling millions of copies. Windows users look at features and capabilities this way: if it wasn't in Windows before, and it is now, then it's an innovative, new feature. Doesn't matter if every other major OS has had said feature for years ... it's still innovative.
    • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by cyborch (524661) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @02:22PM (#14750755) Homepage Journal
      I posted 10 reasons to buy OSX Tiger in response [cyborch.dk].
    • Re:So... (Score:4, Funny)

      by MonsterOfTheLake (880659) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @03:52PM (#14751215) Homepage
      what feature will I get that I don't already have in Mac OS X 10.4?

      Right clicking.
  • by marcello_dl (667940) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:25PM (#14749981) Homepage Journal
    Those are 10 reasons to buy vista IF you are currently running XP. As a Linux user who has always the option to open a maconlinux OSX window, the only reason would be the collaborative environment. All the other reasons were available to me on linux osx or both, since at least two years ago. Heh, the two way firewall :)
  • by Kasracer (865931) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:26PM (#14749986) Homepage
    According to Microsoft, the requirements for Vista are almost as low of Windows XP, you just can't have all the pretty effects and such.

    I was reading about Vista last night and it's including features like a revamped sleep mode which is a cross between standby and hibernation. They have have SmartFetch or whatever it's called so it knows what applications you typically use and at what times so it'll preload them into memory making it seem snappier.

    All in all, it sounds like Vista will be a pretty good release (at least, in my opinion).
    • SmartFetch

      Is that like the MS office preloader?

      Or perhaps like the background indexing service?

      Or maybe the stupid automatic refreshes on search windows?

      Or perhaps the idiotic "Personalized Menu's"?

      It sounds to me that it is yet another feature that will get in the way more than that actually helps you -- I don't like it when my machine starts doing all kinds of stuff (with the harddrive) when I'm not using it for 5 minutes.

      If you want to start your applications fast, here's a tip: get 2 GB of memory,

    • by horatio (127595) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @03:03PM (#14750986)
      it knows what applications you typically use and at what times so it'll preload them into memory making it seem snappier

      Could you please provide a link to this article? While I'm interested to read it, I don't really buy this. Friggin' XP can't figure out how often I use programs now. (When you go to "Add/Remove Programs" it is supposed to tell you how often the program is used.) For example what XP says/actual:

      Adobe Acrobat: "occasionally" / several times a day
      APC PowerChute Personal Edition: "rarely" / is _always_ running
      Gaim: "occasionally" / is _always_ running
      Firefox: "occasionally" / default browser
      Thunderbird: "frequently" / finally got one right
      WinRAR archiver: "rarely" / several times a day

      I don't want Microsoft deciding which programs it thinks I use most often and wasting memory + CPU "pre-loading" things. Maybe, just maybe if the damn OS wasn't so bloated they wouldn't need to preload applications. Then again, if the OS wasn't so bloated it would stop crashing because they could get all their garbage out of kernel space and back into userspace where it belongs. As it is, they have to put things in kernel space to keep the entire system from grinding to a halt when you run 'calc.exe'. Basically, get the entire GUI out of kernel space. AFAIK they can't do that because it would be way too slow.

      Granted TFA was very much non-technical, some things missing from the list: (If I'm wrong about any of these being in XP, please feel free to correct me.)

      - for-real no-shit multitasking. Linux has it. OS X has it. It aggarvates me to no end that the system severely drags and/or blocks while doing things like copying large files, burning a CD, scanning the "network neighborhood", or basically any other process which the kernel determines is "intensive". I can do 8 semi-CPU intensive things at once with no problem on a *nix machine without X slowing to a crawl. Good luck trying that on XP. A user-space process or application should never be allowed to block.

      - Real ability to disable write caching. This is more a technical point, but nonetheless. The little box that is supposed to disable write caching for USB/Firewire devices seems to have no effect. I'm constantly getting the "This device cannot be stopped right now, try again later" BS from XP. Again, this is a "feature" to speed things up because the system is so inefficent.

      - Stop the auto-mounter. Goes along with the above: the ability to turn off automounting of filesystems, or at the very least mount them as read-only. Windows will *always* try to write to a filesystem no matter what. Writing to a hosed disk is a good way to make it worse. Sure you can mount the disk while acting as user who doesn't have write privs to files, but that isn't the same. XP stills writes system and metadata to the disk.

      - Unbinding IE from the system. I thought this was decided by a court that they had to do this. The last time I tried to uninstall IE the clipboard stopped functioning in MSOffice. Until I reinstalled IE, of course.

      - Make it easier/possible to stop services that are not critical. This fails on XP mostly because nearly all of the services are "critical" to the operation of the OS. Again, to compare this to the *nix model - I can stop almost any service except for init and the system will continue to run. Why can't I enable networking and disable the filesharing by stopping the service that makes the SMB ports listen? A firewall is needed, yes. But it would be even more useful to be able to stop those services which should not be listening anyways.

      - Stop telling me "access denied" when I'm the fracking system admin. I really hate that. Processes can't be killed, services can't be stopped, files can't be deleted, etc because "Access denied". Kill the damn process if I tell you to.

      - Stop with the stupid exclusive file locks. Some of this is the fault of applications
  • Honestly (Score:5, Interesting)

    by gleather (596807) <gleatherman@gmai[ ]om ['l.c' in gap]> on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:27PM (#14749994) Journal
    After paying for 3.1, 95, 98, 98SE, ME, 2000, XP I'm really starting to abandon cynicism and derision in favor of good old practical thriftiness. I just can't afford Windows anymore.
    • Re:Honestly (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Jester99 (23135)
      After paying for 3.1, 95, 98, 98SE, ME, 2000, XP ... I just can't afford Windows anymore.

      Bullshit.
      1) You'd never pay for both 98 and 98SE -- SE was a free upgrade.
      2) You'd never pay for ME and 2000, since they were both released at the same time, and if you'd bought 2000, you'd never even consider installing the far-inferior ME on a second computer, you'd just use the same copy of 2000.

      So you've paid for six OS revisions since roughly 1993. 6 in 13 years. Or once per two years. At $100 each, that's $600, or
  • New computer? Why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by JonTurner (178845) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:27PM (#14749995) Journal
    Good luck MSFT - you've got a hell of a challenge ahead of you.

    The age of the compelling application is mostly over because existing hardware (even systems several years old, and thus dirt cheap) fulfill almost all of the average person's computing needs. I'd wager that 90% (or more) of average household computer usage is spent in two applications: email and internet browser. (the other 10% is word processing, accounting/taxes, etc.)

    And no, gamers aren't "average" computer users. They're always looking for state-of-the-art.

    Seriously -- other than as a new game platform, why would the average person buy a new computer? Mom & Pop don't understand/care about new video production, DVD ripping, file sharing, etc. They just want to occasionally look something up on the net, buy something off eBay, or get a photo of the grandkids. If they already have a system (and market saturation ##'s suggest that they do) convincing them to shell out a grand for a new box that doesn't offer them anything more than the old one is going to be a tough sell.
  • by antifoidulus (807088) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:30PM (#14750013) Homepage Journal
    It could also be called, "10 reasons for buying Mac OS X Tiger"....
  • by Doc Ruby (173196) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:32PM (#14750029) Homepage Journal
    So the top reason to buy Vista is "you have to".
  • by Timesprout (579035) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:37PM (#14750060)
    Because you can.


    No wait, thats not right.....
  • by mrchaotica (681592) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:37PM (#14750061)
    1. Security, security, security: Windows XP Service Pack 2 patched a lot of holes, but Vista takes security to the next level.
    That's not an argument for Vista, that's an argument for a secure OS (such as every other OS except Windows!).
    2. Internet Explorer 7: IE gets a much-needed, Firefox-inspired makeover, complete with tabbed pages and better privacy management
    If it's "Firefox inspired," why not just use Firefox in the first place?
    3. Righteous eye candy: For the first time, Microsoft is building high-end graphics effects into Windows
    Wow, what an innovation! Wait a second, that reminds me of something. Oh yeah: Mac OS.
    4. Desktop search: Microsoft has been getting its lunch handed to it by Google and Yahoo on the desktop, but Vista could change all that.
    See above statement.
    5. Better updates: Vista does away with using Internet Explorer to access Windows Update, instead utilizing a new application to handle the chore of keeping your system patched and up-to-date.
    And Linux, BSD, and even Mac OS have had package management systems since when, forever?
    6. More media: Over the years, one of the key reasons to upgrade versions of Windows has been the free stuff Gates and Company toss into the new OS, and Vista is no exception.
    This must be some kind of joke. Windows bundles the fewest apps of any operating system. Have you seen what comes by default with Mac OS or -- better yet -- a typical Linux distribution?!
    7. Parental controls: Families, schools, and libraries will appreciate the tuned-up parental controls, which let you limit access in a variety of ways.
    Oh boy! New and improved restrictions!
    8. Better backups
    Thank god! Now I no longer have to back up my system on 376 thousand floppy disks!
    9. Peer-to-peer collaboration
    Quick, somebody sic the RIAA on them!
    10. Quick setup: Beta code alert: There are some Vista features I hope dearly for even though they haven't been built yet. This is one of them.
    And reason number ten? There is no reason number ten!
    • by dfghjk (711126) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:45PM (#14750124)
      Have you seen what comes by default with Mac OS...?

      Yes I have and it's not as great as Windows. iLife is not bundled with Mac OS although it is bundled with the machine. It's not the end-all of bundled software either.
    • by Tom (822) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:06PM (#14750262) Homepage Journal
      5. Better updates:

      And Linux, BSD, and even Mac OS have had package management systems since when, forever?


      And this isn't even a package manager! Can you install OpenOffice on Windos Update? Or even M$ Office? No, this isn't the equivalent to synaptic, adept or any other package manager, it's just a GUI for "apt-get update && apt-get upgrade".

      6. More media: Over the years, one of the key reasons to upgrade versions of Windows has been the free stuff Gates and Company toss into the new OS, and Vista is no exception.

      This must be some kind of joke.


      I'm certain it is. I know of nobody who ever bought any version of windos because of some bundled stuff. Plus, of course, exactly what is bundled depends a lot more on the OEM than on M$. There's no "standard offer" as there is with OS X.

      But the worst joke is:

      Vista takes security to the next level.

      Oh yeah, I'm sure it will - for the first 5 days or so, until the first remote root is found in the default setup.

      Plus, of course, most of these reasons are just recycled from the XP launch.
  • by NoMoreNicksLeft (516230) <john.oylerNO@SPAMcomcast.net> on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:37PM (#14750066) Journal
    1. What's good for Microsoft is good for the US economy.
    2. Because they have a million tricks up their sleeve to obselete your old software.
    3. You're too stupid to use linux.
    4. Your new hardware has been sabotaged for any "pirated" software like linux.
    5. Because we get kickbacks from Ballmer if you do.
    6. As an american, you are culturally programmed to want new toys and to believe what marketing firms tell you.
    7. Because it will be secure. *snicker*cough**snort*LOL... damn, I can't keep a straight face.
    8. Because we at Microsoft have been busy trying to convince you that cool tricks are only possible on Vista, and considering our other OSs are steaming shitpiles, you just might believe it.
    9. Because WE SAY SO.
    10. If you haven't bought Vista yet, then the terrorists have already won...
  • Let's See (Score:4, Interesting)

    by MBCook (132727) <foobarsoft@foobarsoft.com> on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:38PM (#14750072) Homepage
    1. Security - OS X already has great security.
    2. Internet Explorer 7 - I've got something better. It's called Safari. It's been out for years.
    3. Righteous eye candy - OS X's eye candy is great, plus it is often functional (see Expose)
    4. Desktop search - I've had it for about a year on OS X. It works great.
    5. Better updates - No longer using Windows Update, instead a seperate application. Hmmm... that sounds like how OS X does it.
    6. More media - OS X has great media handling abilities. And he talks about the improved Windows Movie Maker? I hope so, that program was sorry the last time I used it. From what I've heard it can't hold a candle to iMovie/iDVD. Both of which come free with every Mac. And what do they have to compete with Garage Band and iWeb (also free with every Mac)?
    7. Parental controls - I honestly don't know if OS X has anything like this
    8. Better backups - No registry on OS X. You just copy everything to a external hard drive and you're set. No special software needed.
    9. Peer-to-peer collaboration - Hadn't heard about this. May be interesting.
    10. Quick setup - OS X installs pretty fast, but you don't have to re-install it every year to keep your computer speedy (have they fixed that?)

    Seems like I've had 8/10 of those for over a year with my Mac. Way to "innovate". As long as you have to buy a whole new computer to run this OS, why not buy a whole new computer and try a better OS than the one you have now. One that has been out for almost a year (10.4). One that isn't a "1.0" like Vista will be.

    If you really like MS though, why not wait for Windows Vista "98" when they iron out the kinks. (OS X had 'em too early on).

  • Innovation? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Karpe (1147) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:40PM (#14750089) Homepage
    1. Security, security, security: How about no know viruses and worms, except for some proof of concepts which have never really proliferated?
    2. Internet Explorer: Safari is a decent browser, with tabbed browsing, from day 1.
    3. Righteous eye candy: Apple introduced gratuitious eye candy with Acqua, and made it usefull with Dashboard and Exposé.
    4. Desktop search: Spotlight is a joy to use.
    5. Better updates: Software Updates, since MacOS X 10.0
    6. More media: Music and Photos? Add video, podcasts, simple web development, and call it iLife.
    7. Parental controls: Done right in Tiger
    8. Better backups: Ok, granted. Unless you count .mac, a paid service.
    9. Peer-to-peer collaboration: First Rendezvous, then Bonjour.
    10. Quick setup: Not only quick, but simple, in MacOS X.
  • by Yahweh Doesn't Exist (906833) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:41PM (#14750091)
    1. new firewall almost as good as ZoneAlarm
    2. new IE almost as good as Firefox
    3. new eye-candy almost as good as OS X
    4. new desktop search almost as good as Google Desktop
    5. new update program almost as good as Mac Software Update
    6. new media programs almost as good as iLife
    7. new parental controls almost as good as proper parenting
    8. new backups almost as good as things not breaking in the first place
    9. new P2P almost as good as turning off your firewall
    10. new quick install almost as good as all the other planned features that don't actually exist yet
    • Ok, come on, be fair... your last three there are total bullshit.

      8) 8. new backups almost as good as things not breaking in the first place

      Backups are for *hardware failures* and *accidental deletion* more than software failures. Saying "having an OS that doesn't break" is a substitute for good backups is the most idiotic thing I've ever heard. And Vista including a built-in backup utility that doesn't suck is a *good thing*... even if all you do is work on a relative's PC when it breaks. (You now have a
  • 1. Security, security, security: Windows XP Service Pack 2 patched a lot of holes, but Vista takes security to the next level.

    So, instead of a wide open door with a 'PLEASE ROB ME!!!" sign taped to it, they've half closed the door and put up a sign that says "ALL OTHER THINGS BEING EQUAL, I WOULD PREFER THAT YOU NOT STEAL ALL MY BELONGINGS, IF THAT'S OK WITH YOU."

    When your starting from the gutter, the "next level" is only the curb.

  • outnumbered (Score:5, Informative)

    by geoff lane (93738) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:46PM (#14750132)
    No matter how many new PCs ship with Vista, there is going to be 3 to 5 years before it dominates the market because that's the approximate time it will take for the existing installed base of PCs to be renewed. Can MS wait that long? Can apps writers? Can the media companies?
  • Cool (Score:5, Interesting)

    by typical (886006) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:50PM (#14750155) Journal
    I remember when Microsoft's competitors got a lot of flack for just trailing MS. The times have changed. Most of the listed new features in Vista are MS playing catch-up with the competition:

    1. Packet filtering capabilities, per-use administrator rights -- from Linux.

    2. Tabs in IE -- from Firefox

    3. Eye candy/transparency -- Mac OS X

    4. Non-awful search system -- everyone was ahead of MS here

    5. Better update system -- still no systemwide yum or apt, but the most abysmal thing about maintaining a Windows box was keeping it up to day, and IE was a piss-poor tool to do so with. See Linux.

    6. Looks like MS is bundling the equivalent of rhythmbox/iTunes and gqview into Windows.

    7. Parental filtering options -- Okay, I'm not aware of anyone else that bundles this in, so this may be new.

    8. Better backups -- Linux's amanda.

    9. Peer-to-peer collaboration -- I don't yet know enough about what this actually translates to to be able to comment on it.

    10. (apparently a wishlist item, not a real feature?)
  • oops! (Score:3, Funny)

    by geoff lane (93738) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:53PM (#14750171)
    9. Peer-to-peer collaboration: The Windows Collaboration module uses peer-to-peer technology to let Vista users work together in a shared workspace. You can form ad hoc workgroups and then jointly work on documents, present applications, and pass messages. You can even post "handouts" for others to review.

    Oh great, there goes the RIAA and MPAA into meltdown.

  • by Liam Slider (908600) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:57PM (#14750204)

    10) Upgrade hell....a new motherboard counts as a "new computer" and thus requires a new Windows license.

    9) If you don't have a computer capable of running it to it's full potential...why bother?

    8) DRM embedded into the OS. Less control for the user.

    7) Viruses

    6) Worms

    5) Spyware

    4) Vista will feature ads.

    3) It's still Windows, so it'll still look like something made by Playskool.

    2) You're going to have to relearn everything anyway, particularly the Office interface which will be radically different with the new release....might as well switch to something new anyway

    1) Gates is evil. What more do you need?

  • by penguin-collective (932038) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @12:57PM (#14750208)
    Here's what to be excited about: 1. Security, security, security

    Is Ballmer writing his own ad copy now?
  • by lancejjj (924211) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:15PM (#14750321) Homepage
    The idea that Microsoft would ditch its own OS for Mac OS X came to me from Michael Desmond of PCWorld.com, whose writings convinced me that the process had already begun.

    I was amused, but after mulling over various coincidences, I'm convinced he may be right. This would be the most phenomenal turnabout in the history of desktop computing.

    Desmond made 10 observations: Microsoft's Vista is all about Mac OS X: Security, a Modern Browser, Eye Candy, Desktop Search, Better Updates, More Media, Parental Controls, Backup, Collaboration, and More.

    Though these points aren't a slam-dunk for Desmond's thesis, other observations fully support it. The theory explains several odd occurrences, including Ballmer's freak-out and an insane defense over monopolistic practices. Like, who cares?
  • by Animats (122034) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @01:41PM (#14750493) Homepage
    1. Solid reliablity.
    2. First choice of corporate America.
    3. You're in control. Windows 2000 doesn't talk to the Internet unless told to do so.
    4. Works fine with Firefox and Thunderbird.
    5. Fully supported by Dell [dell.com]
    6. Runs under Xen [win4lin.com], for casual Windows use in Linux shops.
    7. Compatible with existing hardware.
    8. No annoying update pop-ups from the operating system.
    9. Interoperates well with Linux and MacOS X.
    10. All files can be backed up to tape and restored.

    Windows 2000 - the all-business operating system for the new millenium.

  • by Simonetta (207550) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @02:26PM (#14750781)
    Security, Security, Security
        yeah, they're so good at this. The world's richest man wants to 'protect' you from people who will give him more money for the opportunity to sell you junk that you don't need, using commercials on your desktop, or 'jump-outs' in your application.
        Plus since we're talking security here, what makes you think that you're going to get any from the guys who bend over backwards to put ordinary people in Chinese concentration-camp prisons. You can be assured that anything from Redmond is going to have plenty of backdoors for the Gitmo Gomers to read and monitor everything that you do on your PC. And Linux won't have this.

    Internet Explorer 7: IE gets a much-needed, Firefox-inspired makeover...
        So use just FireFox. 'nuff said.

        Righteous eye candy...
        Do like Steve Jobs and just drop some acid if you ...need... eye candy.

        Desktop search: ...just use Google and Yahoo like you do normally anyway since they're already here and better.

        Better updates:
        one word...sourceforge....next?

        More media
        more embedded DRM, you mean.

        Parental controls
        we are already grown-up, and we don't need any more excuses for library restrictions on web access. Like prohibiting 17-year-olds from getting information on effective birth control, just cause 'Jesus or Allah says no'.

        Better backups
        the application programmer's responsibility, not the OS.

        Peer-to-peer collaboration
        they seem to want to make that quite illegal if I recall correctly.

        So how much money or honey did they give this guy for writing such a transparent puff-piece about an operation system that doesn't even exist yet?
  • by thesnarky1 (846799) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @02:52PM (#14750930) Homepage
    1. Security...

    Not running everyone as admin does NOT constitute security. In fact, I would have no reason to switch from my *nix systems for this security. Gonna have to try harder then that.

    2. IE 7

    I've gone of the "upgrade" list of IE 7 quite closely to find... nothing new. Everything they "add" is already in another major browser. As for that anti-phishing feature, as a student in IUs Applied Cryptography:Phishing course, I can tell you it's worthless. Because it relies on a file on disc, probably built into IE, this can be easily circumvented by malware. Sorry, I don't trust IE at all, just from the track record. Need a better reason? It's still built into the OS. Not... smart... at... all...

    3. Eye Candy

    Granted, I only have a Windows box for my gaming pleasures, but still it is stupid to require a high-end system for the desktop. Most users will not be playing games on it, so most won't automatically have the hardware to run this. What I'd like to know is if it comes on by default? I'll bet it does, which means that it'll run very slow before users realize to turn it off. Plus, why is this necessary? I realize I'm a little bit of a purist, and prefer a command line, but even when I use a desktop, this seems like overkill. Has anyone ever desired to see what's on a window without actually opening the window? Does it really save that much time?

    4. Desktop Search

    Ok, again this is a good thing to have, and one of my main beefs with Windows is the slow search feature (hard to find the virii on friend's coimputers). Now, my *nix box is damn quick thanks to how they do searches. I wonder if Microsoft has gone to that model. Also, will it search hidden and system files by default? Something it *needs* to do, and doesn't by default.

    5. Better Updates

    Nice to see them getting away from using IE for everything, but again, this is a feature in Mac OS, and *nix already. Not exactly a reason to "upgrade".

    6. Media

    Ok, I'll give 'em more media is gonna be a selling point for the average user. Good smart marketing *clap*. But my question is this. Are these going to be strand alone programs? Or Microsoft's usual anti-monopoly move, and built into the OS. If built in, as the DVD Maker sound like, why? All this is is a new way to add vulnerabilities. I think as little as possible should be "OS", and the rest offered as downloads that don't have root permissions in the OS.

    7. Parental Controls

    Now, this argument is personal, but hear me out. I don't like cencorship, and I think that a better parenting method is to teach kids how to use the computer correctly and trust them not to be going against your will. Locking it while you're at work, kinda petty. Some parents might agree with this, and I'm not a parent, but I definately don't like this practice or some of the stuff AOL is doing. I also think this could be a fun attack vector. Imagine blocking file downloads for the update client? Or locking out the admin account, then un-priviledged virii can have all day to scan the hard drive for information.

    8. Backups

    They tout the fact that the backup client is upgraded for the first time in years? Not a selling point.

    9. Peer to Peer

    I am willing to place $1000 on the fact that within a year of Vista going public, this feature is exploited in at least 5 virii. More than that, it will be used by Phishers to get people to join false workgroups, and steal information. Perhaps a SEPERATE program would be a better idea here? Something that doesn't come on, right out of the box?

    10. Quick Setup

    If it comes with this, awesome. No OS has quick setup right now, and even *nix is plauged by bloat (FC4 takes over an hour, 6.5 GB). However, I don't believe this number, "15 minutes". Is that like Windows 95 will run on 4 MB RAM? (For the record, it DOES, just barely... the mouse lags). Perhaps on a high end system.

    But, this article is not about getting other OS users to switch, it's about getting XP users to upgrade

  • by 3seas (184403) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @03:00PM (#14750970) Journal
    1) Help microsoft pay for ongoing anti-trust legal battles

    2) help those who have stock in MS to see a growth in their stock value

    3) Help homeland security worm its way into your personal affairs, thru windows back doors.

    4) help those who have stock in MS to see a growth in their stock value

    5) help suppress open source software.

    6) help those who have stock in MS to see a growth in their stock value

    7) help the economy by requiring more people to be hired to handle windows IT issues.

    8) help those who have stock in MS to see a growth in their stock value

    9) help MS to buy out and shut down better products.

    10 help those who have stock in MS to see a growth in their stock value.

    I said HONEST..... I didn't say anything about Ethical.

    There was a time when investing in stock was based upon believing in a company's products and services.
    Today that doesn't matter, so long as you have a positive return (do a google for "trillion dollar bet" for the extreamly unethical side of this.

  • by Opportunist (166417) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @03:18PM (#14751055)
    Because the app writers will force you to.

    It's that plain and simple. Companies writing applications for Windows will enjoy the new DRM features. Not to mention that everyone will HAVE to buy the new DRMed version or their system will refuse to run the DRMed apps they have at the same time as the non-DRMed.

    So companies will jump onto the DRM bandwagon for the simple reason that you can't pirate their stuff anymore. Well... let's just assume you can't, just for the sake of not starting an argument about whether it's vaporware again or not. :)

    They'll THINK it does prevent pirating. And that's what matters.

    Joe Shmoe Average will not know how to circumvent it, so he'll buy all the new shiny apps. And new apps will not work on "legacy" (read: current) systems. Especially game companies will jump onto it like blowflys swarm a piece of turd.

    So no matter what "wonderful" features the new piece of tur... software from Redmond offers, people will buy it for the simple reason that their new apps will not run on anything else.
  • by aduzik (705453) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @03:35PM (#14751148) Homepage

    I didn't see anything on that list that Mac OS X or your favorite Linux distro doesn't already have. I looked, point by point, and could think of a comparable feature on either Mac OS X or Linux or, usually, both. That's what I wish Windows users would understand, particularly home users. Microsoft, despite their dominance of the OS market, sells, by far, the least advanced operating system of the big three. Linux gets features as soon as someone contributes code, which happens all the time. And, if you're impatient like me, you can install Debian testing/unstable and always have the latest features as they come down the pike.

    Let's review:

    Security
    Every Linux distro I know of forces you to make a non-privileged user account. There are plenty of features built into GNOME and KDE now that let you do a graphical 'sudo' to do administrative tasks. On the Mac, this is the default. They have their own graphical 'sudo', which works incredibly well. And, aside from the occasional exploit, neither OS has the same kind of inherent security problems that Windows does.
    IE 7
    One word: Firefox. OK, two: Safari. Both great browsers that already offer all the same featuers.
    Righteous Eye Candy
    The GNOME and KDE themes have improved dramatically over the past few years and they look pretty good. Maybe not "Aero Glass" good, but then again they don't require an outrageous graphics card to use. Mac OS X has Aqua. Very pretty indeed, and far less distracting than Aero Glass.
    Desktop Search
    On Linux, locate. On the Mac, Spotlight. And developers can write Spotlight importers that give those apps better control over how their files are indexed. Windows has nothing like this. Oh, and if you are using Windows, use Google Desktop Search. It works well. I like it.
    Better updates
    On Linux, set up a cron job to do an apt-get update && apt-get upgrade every now-and-then and you're set. On Mac OS X, Software Update already updates every piece of software Apple sells with about one or two clicks. And, it runs automatically. Done.
    More Media
    iTunes, QuickTime. And with Flip4Mac, you can play un-DRMed WMV files right in QuickTime. On Linux, there are too many media players to name. No, they won't work with Windows Media, usually, but there's definitely no lack of MP3 library apps.
    Parental Controls
    Now here, I don't know about Linux, but I'd find it hard to believe there isn't some way a person couldn't use PAM to control when and where his/her kids use the computer. On the Mac, parental controls are already built in, system-wide.
    Better Backups
    Sure, it costs $99/year, but .Mac backup is awesome. It has backup plans for all the most common things: purchased music, documents, and so on. Custom backup plans are easy to configure. On Linux, every file copy program is a backup program with the right flags. And there are a few graphical tools to automate the process as well.
    Collaboration
    On the Mac: SubEthaEdit. Can't beat it. Again, I'm not sure about Linux, but I don't think that collaborative editing is a make-or-break feature.
    Quick Setup
    Mac OS X install has always taken about 20 minutes. Depending on your distro, you could be up and running in, well, no time if you use a live CD, but most CD-based Linux installs (think Fedora) take about the same time.

    Granted, Linux still has to do some catching up in terms of user-friendliness, but like all UNIX, all the pieces are there if you know how to assemble them. There are more and more graphical tools appearing everyday to put those pieces together for you. Mac OS X already has just about every feature the article describes and they're planning a new release about the same time as Vista appears.

    And Microsoft would do well to drop certain features. The Windows Registry, I think, is one of the worst-conceived ideas ever. If Microsof

  • by jav1231 (539129) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @04:26PM (#14751408)
    Let's see. IE 7 will be more like Firefox and Vista will be more like OS X and Linux. So much for original thinking.
  • A little odd (Score:3, Insightful)

    by CastrTroy (595695) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @05:31PM (#14751786) Homepage
    Does it strike anybody else as odd that all the features (maybe minus the eyecandy, although probably not) are not actual parts of the OS, but applications that should be completely separate from the OS. Doesn't microsoft have enough monopoly troubles without tieing more crap into the OS?
  • by ylikone (589264) on Saturday February 18, 2006 @08:19PM (#14752482) Homepage
    1. I like freedom
    2. I like freedom
    3. I like freedom
    4. I like freedom
    5. I like freedom
    6. I like freedom
    7. I like freedom
    8. I like freedom
    9. I like freedom
    10. I like freedom

    Hence, I use a few different variations of Linux on my boxes. No MS. No Apple. Just open-source and freedom. I don't give a shit that I can't play the newest games. I don't give a shit that I can't run the latest and greatest commercial apps. I don't give a shit that I can't use every cheap off-the-shelf piece of hardware. I don't give a shit that I don't belong to a an elitist club with a superior GUI. I value freedom over all. Am I an idealist? You bet.

C for yourself.

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