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Windows Vista 5342 Screenshots 478

Posted by CowboyNeal
from the early-looks dept.
Lhopar writes "Microsoft released a new build of Windows Vista to beta testers. Flexbeta has got some screenshots. Included in this build is an extensive collection of drivers and the exclusive sidebar. Glass is also a feature that we all have come to respect and love, along with the 3D flip. The official version number is 6.0 Version 5342.winmain_idx04.060321-1730. Internet Explorer 7.0 is build Version 7.0.5342.2. Nice features include a new 'Paint' and needed redesigned network center."
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Windows Vista 5342 Screenshots

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  • Wow (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:17PM (#14993732)
    5342 is a lot of screenshots.
  • Sweet! New version of Paint!
  • by falcon5768 (629591) <Falcon5768NO@SPAMcomcast.net> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:21PM (#14993745) Journal
    1. Wait for Apple to do it first 2. Take 4 years to copy what Apple did in the prosses promicing everything + a new shiney toaster then take it away so your left with the old OS + some nice pictures 3. Say everything Apple did (now 6 years ago) will be in the next version and have people still eat it up 4. ????????? 5. Profit
    • Why is the parent modded 'troll'? The first thing that strikes me when seeing these Vista screenshots is, "it looks like OS X". Even the default font is the same or very similar.
    • Apple borrowed some things from Windows too (as did gnome and KDE) - like the taskbar, alt+tab (yes this works in OSX) and the concept of having all your window controls in one group - introduced in Windows 95. Sure Apple puts them on the left - but I'm sure they did that just to be different.
      • i believe Nextstep/Openstep had a dock which is equivelent to a task bar first. Actually much of windows 95 seems like a borrowing and recasting of many of nextstep's UI decisions (close button, globally accessible application launcher that can be hidden)
    • by tehshen (794722) <tehshen@gmail.com> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @02:17PM (#14994190)
      Who Cares? I've seen this a lot lately, but I can't see the point. Whenever Product $Bar comes along, people moan about how Product $Foo had this feature first, as if it's going to make any difference to how it operates. I'm not going to use the product that's out first, I'm going to use the product that's best at doing it.

      Whenever I use a Mac, I can't get over the way you have to resize windows from the corner only. Windows lets me drag, Mac makes me move then jiggle about a bit then drag. Until the Dock came along, I often got lost in the mountains of windows I had open - Windows organised them all into the taskbar. Back in the day, the Mac zealots boasted how Apple had the whole window managing idea first. This didn't change the fact that I didn't like Apple's window management at all, though. (Luckily it got better with OS X).

      Another example: Popup blocking. Opera was the first browser to stop new windows from being opened while browsing. Then Mozilla came along, took Opera's feature, and improved it by only blocking windows while the page loads. To this day, Opera weenies still proudly proclaim "Don't forget, Opera had popup blocking first!". Screw you guys, Opera's implementation sucked. I went with Mozilla's implementation because it didn't block new windows opened by me.

      That being said, Microsoft have a long track record for making bad products - IE still uses Opera's old braindead popup blocking method. Heck, DRM had me sold before I heard any other features.

      Microsoft isn't an innovator? Oh. There are plenty of reasons to dislike Vista, but I don't care about originality being one of them.
      • Opera's feature, and improved it by only blocking windows while the page loads...., Opera's implementation sucked. I went with Mozilla's implementation because it didn't block new windows opened by me.

        To clarify, "sucked" is in the past tense; Opera doesn't do that now.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:23PM (#14993750)
    5 years for a new version of paint! Well worth the wait. Screw linux, I want the new MS Paint! Linux will continue to fall behind microsoft, it doesn't even have MS Paint. Hahahaha Silly Linux users, you don't know what your missing.
    • Re:Worth the wait. (Score:3, Insightful)

      by DrXym (126579)
      Not 5 years, 11 years. It's about time that MS did something about the fucking awful "accessories" they bundle with Windows. Notepad and calculator could do with a complete rewrite too. Notepad still can't cope with Unix or Mac line endings.
  • Performance rating (Score:5, Interesting)

    by LiquidCoooled (634315) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:26PM (#14993763) Homepage Journal
    In the performance rating screenshot, they give seperate ratings for CPU graphics etc then give a total overall figure.
    Something doesn't make sense:

    Processor: P4 3.0GHZ 4.3
    Memory: 1023mb 5.2
    Hard Drive: 179GB free 4.8
    Graphics Radeon 9600 4.3
    Graphics Mem: 126mb 3.7

    Overall Rating: 3

    Wouldn't it be reasonable to expect this machine to have a 4?

    Or is graphics memory the only meaningful metric?

  • coral cahced (Score:5, Informative)

    by ^Z (86325) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:26PM (#14993764) Homepage Journal
    http://www.flexbeta.net.nyud.net:8090/main/comment s.php?catid=1&shownews=18760 [nyud.net]

    I wonder when slashcode is going to support inserting .nyud.net:8090 to all post links automatically?
  • by woolio (927141) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:27PM (#14993771) Journal
    What's that? They released a new Paint?

    Now I have no choice but to upgrade...
    • M$Paint originated as ZSoft's Paint for DOS, released by ZSoft in *1985*. M$Paint had merely been made into a WinApp, but was otherwise identical to the DOS version (which I still have installed on some old machines). Incidentally some ZSoft code was the original core for CorelDraw, way back when.

      The WinXP incarnation of M$Paint was the first one that didn't use glorified screen-capture per the old DOS method of saving images (that's why Save in M$Paint had always truncated any part of the image that wasn't
  • by MrNonchalant (767683) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:34PM (#14993803)
    I swear these articles are like the Slashdot version of Two Minutes Hate.
  • Ah, I think I'll wait and see the screen shots on my own monitor when I'm running Vista ...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:40PM (#14993834)
    I'm surprised so many people are even checking this out with all the Windows hate you people feature.
  • First thoughts (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DarthChris (960471) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:41PM (#14993837)
    • Still uses crappy activation
    • In the third [screen]shot down, the windows stacked at a 3-D angle looks horrible. It might amuse little kids for a while though (clippy all over again)
    • The updated paint doesn't look that different, and anyone with any serious graphics needs isn't going to use it anyway
    • More of those lovely flashy blue setup screens that dumb down the interface (I personally don't like them)
    • The performance rating is an interesting idea; it might be useful for people buying games (especially parents)
    Disclaimer: I rushed this post a bit, I'm in a hurry
    • Re:First thoughts (Score:5, Informative)

      by amliebsch (724858) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:53PM (#14993887) Journal
      In the third [screen]shot down, the windows stacked at a 3-D angle looks horrible. It might amuse little kids for a while though (clippy all over again)

      What in the world does clippy have to do with this? Suspend judgement on this one until you see it in action. (There are demos at Channel9 if you are really interested.) It's a mode that's activated by a certain hotkey. While you hold the key down, you can use your mouse wheel or keys to flip through the stack of windows. Then when you let go of the hotkey, the one on top of the stack comes to the front. It actually looks pretty handy, like a 3D Alt+Tab.

      • Re:First thoughts (Score:3, Insightful)

        by theurge14 (820596) *
        Well, it obscures a good 70% of each screenshot. How is that anymore useful than Alt-Tab now? Are they worried about completely ripping off Expose?
        • Re:First thoughts (Score:3, Insightful)

          by amliebsch (724858)
          Alt-tab now only shows an application icon. Even if you use the "enhanced" alt-tab, which shows screen shots of the windows, it is slow, the image is too tiny, it doesn't show any motion ocurring in the windows, and it is unwieldly if you have a large number of windows open.
      • Re:First thoughts (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Coolnat2004 (830862)
        It looks alright, but I still prefer Mac OS X's Exposé.. mainly because you can see the entire window, just scaled down.

        Does this feature in Vista show animations / videos when switching through the windows? I find it handy with Exposé since I can monitor several windows at once (for example, progress bars.. or watch a video while monitoring progress in other applications, etc.) With the 3D angle, though, I don't think it will be as handy..
      • Re:First thoughts (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Shelled (81123) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:28PM (#14994014)
        Some of us have been using mutliple virtual desktops for a decade and are perfectly qualified to make a personal assesment based on the screenshots. Better than the taskbar model? Perhaps. Than multiple desktops + pager? No, you go ahead and keep it, along with its horsepower requirements.
      • It actually looks pretty handy, like a 3D Alt+Tab.

        You mean like XGL does?

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xgl [wikipedia.org]

        http://www.freedesktop.org/~davidr/xgl-demo1.xvid. avi [freedesktop.org]
    • Don't forget:
      • Still looks like a sooped-up KDE+XGL
    • In the third [screen]shot down, the windows stacked at a 3-D angle looks horrible. It might amuse little kids for a while though (clippy all over again)

      What about the slightly oversized, semi-transparent window titlebars and borders?

      What are these guys thinking? What about the Tiger widgets ripoff, now called gadgets? (BTW, I think both are useless).

      I don't understand Microsoft.

      Why don't they focus on what is important besides inventing more confusing and unintuitive UI features?

      Microsoft will be able to
    • Re:First thoughts (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Animaether (411575)

      The updated paint doesn't look that different, and anyone with any serious graphics needs isn't going to use it anyway

      Of course if they included something that a serious graphics needy person /would/ use, they would get sued shortly for antitrust/monopoly/whatever reasons.

      And when they offer a graphics application separately, the comments are just along the line of...
      - bah, they just bought another company
      - pff, it's not Photoshop
      - boo, I'll stick with The Gimp

      *yawn*

  • by Tibor the Hun (143056) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:45PM (#14993848)
    I like the screenshot with widgets:
    Link. [x64bit.net]

    With the timer, I can time almost anything! (Makes you wonder what is it that I can't time, and why do they need such an obvious explanation?)

    The icon for both a number puzzle and picture puzzle is the same! (Requiring me to read the text, completely making the icon irrelevant. --yes, yes, beta version, whatever)

    But the best thing of all, and the widget that I think SpaceX is most excited about, is the Launcher!
    Name your price Microsoft, name your price!

  • More Screenshots (Score:3, Informative)

    by ewithrow (409712) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:48PM (#14993866) Homepage
    Here's another page with screenshots, as the story link seems to be /.ed:

    http://www.msblog.org/album/thumbnails.php?album=1 6 [msblog.org]
  • by ranathari (960625) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @12:50PM (#14993871)
    The Windows Vista sidebar has already been ported to Windows XP. You can find a download link here [tech-recipes.com] along with installation instructions. More widgets and gadgets for the sidebar can be found here [aeroxp.net].

    I tried it and it just doesn't do anything for me that can't already be done in Windows XP without taking up more screen-space.
  • Does anyone know if it's possible to theme Vista to look like XP? (not Windows 2k classic). I haven't seen any (recent) screenshots of Vista looking this way, so I'm wondering if they're including it.
  • mirror (Score:5, Funny)

    by blwrd (455512) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:04PM (#14993924)
    The site seems to be slashdotted, so here's the google cache [google.fi] from the site ;)
  • by maniac/dev/null (170211) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:06PM (#14993931) Homepage
    Solitare Vista is going to be the best-looking card simulation game available on any platform! I can't wait to get my hands on Vista now!
  • Ok... (Score:3, Funny)

    by 360fusion (922660) <bcorcoran AT gmail DOT com> on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:11PM (#14993944)
    For the number of you people bashing Microsoft, a hell of a lot of you are looking at those screenshots, so if you don't like Vista, please get off the damn site.
    • Re:Ok... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by hackstraw (262471) * on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:45PM (#14994085)
      For the number of you people bashing Microsoft, a hell of a lot of you are looking at those screenshots, so if you don't like Vista, please get off the damn site.

      Well, like it or not, Microsoft is a fairly dominant player in the computing world, and for computer professionals like myself that do not use Microsoft products, its still worthwhile to know what the rest of the world sees and does with computers.

      I can't tell if I'm just biased, but to me it seems like there are more criticisms and chronic delays and fewer real usable features that are coming with Microsoft's latest and greatest. Personally, I believe Microsoft should be ashamed for not even attempting the WinFS thing. As computers can do more things like multimedia and the amount of data that people have on their machines today is astounding, yet MS has not properly addressed content management. SourceSafe or whatever it was called is a perfect example. On the other hand, Project is one of their organizing apps that is reportedly decent and has no competition.

      • >I can't tell if I'm just biased, but to me it seems like there are more criticisms

        It means that you've been reading slashdot too much.

        >and chronic delays and fewer real usable features that are coming with Microsoft's latest and greatest.

        Considering its slashdot, either you will get it (the latest tech toy!) or you will never get it (Its M$!). Either way, delays or features shouldn't matter.

        (Extra points for you for addressing the GP point about the M$ bashing by including a M$ bash!)
  • I never realized (Score:4, Insightful)

    by presidentbeef (779674) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:24PM (#14993995) Homepage Journal
    Everyone's been saying Vista is just stealing from Mac OS X. I never realized before seeing these screenshots just how true that is (appears to be, anyway). I'm not really a Mac user, but that interface looks a lot like a Mac...

    All this time, all that money, and this is the best interface they could come up with?
    Well, whatever. Like a lot of people on these threads keep reminding us, we don't have to use it and of course there's no convincing me to switch from Linux to Windows ;)
  • From x64bit.net [x64bit.net] "We also have information that almost 60% of the code for Vista will be rewritten." Is this true?

    Also what language(s) is Vista actually programmed in?
  • by caseih (160668) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:28PM (#14994019)
    Funny how the window decorations in these screenshots look a lot like the new default Fedora Core 5 metacity theme, at least in terms of shape and the window operation buttons. Shame on Redhat for copying Windows like that. Oh wait.

    Seems to me Windows is looking more and more like the *nix desktops all the time. I guess this means that Linux really is influencing even Microsoft.

    Having played with Xgl a bit, I find it cool, but generally speaking translucent windows are not that useful and often make the contents of the windows harder to read. Looks like MS's take on this is to add blurring to the translucency which actually makes the window contents very readable while still maintaining some transparency. Whether this is going to be a good thing when you have a bunch of windows stacked on top of each other I don't know. But definitely the blurring effect plus the translucency is much better than just the translucency that I can get with Xgl. Of course nothing stops one from doing the bluring in Xgl too. Xgl has all of these capabilities right here now. It will be interesting to see how translucency is finally used. For all its eye-candy, OS X does almost no translucency, except on the dock.
    • I personally think the translucent blurry bit has helped define window edges a lot more clearly, since stuff in the background is visibly out of focus.
    • by hackstraw (262471) * on Saturday March 25, 2006 @01:55PM (#14994119)
      For all its eye-candy, OS X does almost no translucency, except on the dock.

      Translucency is built into OS X and hardware accelerated. Expose, the dock, SVG icons, terminal window, etc. use them. There are themes that you can get 3rd part to add more translucency if you want.

      The day that Apple decides to by default make window titles and borders semi-translucent with a nice blurring feature and hides the title of background windows and all that jazz, I'll go back to a Linux desktop.

      The screenshots (mostly slashdotted) here, http://www.msblog.org/album/displayimage.php?album =16&pos=0 [msblog.org], are not very flattering, and there are only a couple of windows open at a time.

      • Umm, yeah, but my point was that OS X does not do very much translucency in the UI itself (not talking about it's capabilities). Icons are alphablended, true, But the windows are generally opaque and I think this is by design. Translucency across windows doesn't always make things more usable. So for all the technology that Quartz is capable of, Apple decided that it's not always useful to employ. I hope that Linux desktop designers take note of such things and not do special effects just for the sake
    • Interestingly, OS X *used* to use transparent titlebars for inactive windows and had very transparent menus as well as buttons. It looked nice, but got distracting sometimes. As of 10.3, inactive windows simply got their titlebars drawn with an opaque-but-disabled look, and menus got more opaque and buttons became very opaque and contained in their little lozenge. A big improvement, in my mind.

      The issue here is not so much the tech -- since OS X, XGL and Vista can all do it -- but how it's used. Apple seems
  • Transparency and window animations. Whoop-dee-do. As a non-Windows-programming end user what I want to know is what new features are in Vista that are going to help me accomplish real work? What's in Vista that should be worth my time and money to upgrade? How will those be better than what I already have in WinXP and Win2000? If you are a beta tester, please let me know. And I don't use IE or MS Paint.
  • Does anyone find the Vista UI at all attractive? Its pretty horrible from a color theory point of view. It just looks like a ugly graphics mixed together. It looks rather slopply for a ui.

    I know people will add all kinds of things to this statement, but the "vista" part of Vista, looks like a sloppy hack job.

    I'm a computer artist... I had to say it. It's ugly.
  • by melted (227442)
    Icons are very telling of Microsoft's attention to detail. Notice how folders stand on their sides (hint, MS designers, papers will fall out if you do that) and every single display in pictures has horrible glare on the screen. Apple would never do something like that, Steve Jobs would not approve.
  • Usefulness? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by j741 (788258) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @03:10PM (#14994371) Journal
    Pretty pictures, transparency, 3D effects. Oooooooh. But how useful, and more importanly, how easy will it be for someone, or someones grandparents, to actually use. The first thing I noticed was the lack of a 'START' button. It seems to have been replaced by a picture. Now I've been in tech support for over 10 years, and it's already dificult enough to get someone to follow simple directions over the telephone. I can just immagine the phone calls now:

        Tech: "O.k., please open the start menu and go to the control pannel"
        User: "Menu, uhm o.k. What menu? I don't see that."
        Tech: "The sart menu. Just click on the button that says 'start' in the bottom-left corner of your screen".
        User: "uhm, I don't see that. Hmmm. Start. Start. Nope, I don't see that anywhere"
        Tech: "O.K. Please tell me what you do see on your screen."
        User: "There are some pretty pictures. I really like the fish, but I want a shark in there."
        Tech: "O.K. Is this Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 2000 or something else?"
        User: "My grandson gave it to me. I don't know what it is. I think he said it was Microsoft."
        Tech: "O.K. So there is no 'start' word on the left side of the task bar at the bottom of your screen. What is at the bottom-left cornet of your screen?"
        User: "There's a nice little circle with some colors in it"
        Tech: "O.K. You are using Windows Vista. That circle is your 'start' menu. Please click on it to open it."
    -- BEEP --
    Your 5 minutes of free product support are now finished. Please enter your credit card number to continue speaking to a technical support representative. This call will be charged at $2.95 per minute. Please enter your credit card number now.

    Just the thing to increase productivity. Re-education needed yet again.
  • by hattig (47930) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @03:40PM (#14994453) Journal
    So I don't feel bad about saying: Oh my god, what's up with this interface?

    Immediately Noticable Bad things:

    1) Close icon 2x the size of minimise and maximise, yet should be used far less. Accidentally hitting close is far more likely than accidentally hitting maximise or minimise. I hope that all applications have warning dialogs. Also these buttons seem to be perched in the top part of the titlebar. So they're thin, vertically, and I imagine most mouse movement to reach them will incorporate vertical movement, so they'll be hard to hit quickly. This may reduce the effect of the larger close button.

    2) Large window borders around application content. Again, this looks ugly, serves no purpose.

    3) Translucent titlebar with blurring effect. This looks nice until you have to use it. The titles have a white halo around them to make them more readable - but how about just having non-translucent titlebars?

    4) The colour scheme and overall effect is very 'gamey'. It's less 'duplo' than XP though, apart from the frosted glass duplo window borders. Will people really want to use a glassy black desktop?

    I worry that all the glitz will actually disturb the user when they're using the computer, rather than working as a visual aid to enhance their usage. Microsoft have a long history of putting worthless graphical effects into their desktop - expanding pop-up menus for example - and I don't see them stopping this trend. It will be configurable I'm sure - I hope that Glass has enough configurability to set the translucency of the window borders to 'none' and to shrink the window border (in particular the left and right borders).

    There are nice things however. The 'Start' button looks very nice. The desktop widgets look nicely integrated.
  • by Arimus (198136) on Saturday March 25, 2006 @10:51PM (#14996104)
    Don't quite get the fuss over Windows Vista. I'm strangely under the misaprehension that the killer package on my PC should be the app's I use day in day out and not the OS. The OS's role in life is to provide resource manangement and hardware abstraction for applications running on the box. A GUI, while a nice to have, should not be an essential requirement of an OS and should ideally be a minimal setup which enables the user to easily carry out tasks in a graphical environment without getting in the way. Hence my lack of love for XP, KDE, GNOME when used with all the trimmings.

    Everytime the OS forces a hardware upgrade on people we're moving away from app's driving user computational requirements to being driven by the thing which is just supposed to manage all the bits of a PC - not mint money for the hardware manufactures.

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