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Windows Vista RC1 Impresses Critics 632

bradley fellows writes "Early feedback from testers already using Windows Vista RC1 (Release Candidate 1) report that the OS is more stable than expected, which bodes well for Microsoft's plan to have Vista out according to its current schedule." Mind you, "expected" is relative given how many users regard their frequent crashes as normal operation for a PC.
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Windows Vista RC1 Impresses Critics

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  • Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by TheRealFixer ( 552803 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @08:58AM (#16058531)
    I'm so confused. []
    • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by garcia ( 6573 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:19AM (#16058651)
      Mind you, "expected" is relative given how many users regard their frequent crashes as normal operation for a PC.

      I'm just as confused with that statement. I don't know the numbers but I'm assuming the people that would be testing RC1 weren't running Win9x and as such wouldn't be thinking that "frequent crashes" were normal.

      Hell, I haven't had XP or 2000 crash in years.
      • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

        by ichigo 2.0 ( 900288 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:25AM (#16058676)
        Hell, I haven't had XP or 2000 crash in years.

        Same here, and I've had my computer on practically 24/7 (some nights turning it off when there's nothing to torrent). Those who claim XP is unstable are nothing more than trolls, or are running it on faulty hardware.
        • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by paanta ( 640245 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @10:00AM (#16058912) Homepage
          I'm sure if you just turn on your computer and let it sit there running a torrent, it's perfectly stable. However, when you do stuff that gets the processor hot and uses up all the RAM and some swap space for hours on end, it's going to crash from time to time...unless you've got some really expensive hardware.

          Every computer I've ever had, whether running windows, mac os, linux or freebsd has crashed periodically. On the other hand, a crash every couple of weeks isn't the end of the world for most people. I'll gladly take a nice OS that lets me be productive over one that never crashes.

          And for what it's worth, what counts as a 'crash' for slashdot folk is not what counts as a 'crash' for most people. My mom probably has to restart her computer all the time to fix problems, whereas you and I might be savvy enough to restart the Finder/Explorer and keep on doing our thing.

          • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Interesting)

            by ConceptJunkie ( 24823 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @10:55AM (#16059298) Homepage Journal
            However, you're implying a crash caused by hardware failures. My extensive experience with 2000 and XP is that about the only way to get the OS to crash is to have bad hardware or faulty drivers. It's really the only stability problem I've ever seen. I can't recall the last time I saw a Microsoft OS crash where I was convinced it was the OS and not a hardware problem... and hardware problems are not common for me.

            The MS bashers hate to admit it, but MS really got it right with Windows 2000. I was hugely skeptical beforehand, but I changed my mind quickly. I never had a reason to buy XP, except for the family computer where compatibility with old games was very important and Windows 98 was an unending source of pain. However, I've bought laptops with XP installed and I don't have a problem with it either.

            Having said that though, I think Explorer is horrible. It's the buggiest piece of software MS has ever released and it never gets better. IE6 used to lock up on me on a daily basis, but I haven't used it regularly in 3 years or more, so I couldn't say if it's improved. Outlook 2000 was awful to use. I always liked Outlook Express, but Outlook 2003 was orders of magnitude slower with a large database (and let's not forget the hidden "feature" that mail stores over about 1.5GB get corrupted).

            These days, I still use Windows, but I use very little MS software on top of Windows, and I have a system that is very usable, stable and reliable. However, Vista has yet to offer me one compelling reason to upgrade. The new network stack sounds intriguing, but not for $200 plus the huge performance hit because I don't have 2GB of RAM. If I upgrade anything, I'll move to Linux and run Windows 2000 in a VM for those apps I can't live without.

            Or maybe I'll buy a Mac.
            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by Emetophobe ( 878584 )

              However, you're implying a crash caused by hardware failures. My extensive experience with 2000 and XP is that about the only way to get the OS to crash is to have bad hardware or faulty drivers. It's really the only stability problem I've ever seen. I can't recall the last time I saw a Microsoft OS crash where I was convinced it was the OS and not a hardware problem... and hardware problems are not common for me.

              I totally agree. The only time I've ever had a bluescreen was due to faulty drivers, Windows

          • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Interesting)

            by Shawn is an Asshole ( 845769 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @11:04AM (#16059367)
            If you have decent hardware, you shouldn't have Linux or FreeBSD crash. One thing that's been a very common cause of instability for me (including on the Windows machines I administer) has been power supplies.

            My Athlon 64 running Ubuntu would occassionally lock up, but after switching the power supply with a better one it's completeley solid. Even when maxing out the RAM and processor for a few days. With the old power supply it would occassionally end up locking up before the process was done. If anyone's curious, I used the origial power supply for about 4 months and the current one for about 8.

            I've encountered this with many $300 computers as well.
        • Re:Huh? (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Blakey Rat ( 99501 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @11:16AM (#16059466)
          I have an alternate explanation. The people saying this are Linux-users who haven't even LOOKED at Windows in years and years, and yet somehow think that Windows never changes. CmdrTaco's last Windows experience might be with Windows 3.11, or maybe Windows 95, and yeah, those crashed. So did Mac OS at the same period of time. And while Linux may have been more stable, you couldn't DO jack with it (at least compared to Windows 95 and Mac OS 7.)

          Look at the other evidence:

          Constant mentions of "Clippy", which has been turned off by default for ages. (Yes, you can still turn on "Clippy" in Office 2003... you know why? A lot of people LIKE it! God-forbid Microsoft keep a feature people like!)

          Mentions of Microsoft Bob. If I posted about how much Red Hat sucked in 1994, you'd get turned into -1 Flamebait instantly here. If you post about how much Microsoft Bob sucked, you'll get a +5 Informative.

          Mentions of things that no regular Windows user would deal with, for instance: auto-correct and auto-format in Word. If you used Windows for longer than 20 seconds, you'd realize you can TURN OFF those features if you don't like them. (And again, a lot of people DO like them, that's why Microsoft keeps them on.)
          • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

            by Tweekster ( 949766 )
            Let me know when you find that one guy that likes clippy, he needs the crap beaten out of him
            No matter how inexperienced the user i have never EVER heard of anything but curses when it comes to clippy.

            It was an idiotic idea then, it is an idiotic idea now, the developers should be banned from the industry and the managers should be all fired.
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by liloldme ( 593606 )
          XP blue screens pretty regularly on my Dell laptop. Don't know how faulty their hardware is but I'd expect less frequent crashes no matter what.
    • Re:Huh? (Score:4, Funny)

      by Lars T. ( 470328 ) <.moc.liamelgoog. .ta. .regearT.sraL.> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @11:32AM (#16059594) Journal
      It's a nega-dupe!
  • Interesting spin (Score:4, Informative)

    by sqlrob ( 173498 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @08:58AM (#16058532)
    I'm seeing both "more stable than expected" and "not ready for prime time" being used to describe Vista.
    • Re:Interesting spin (Score:4, Interesting)

      by jimstapleton ( 999106 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:01AM (#16058545) Journal
      Call me weird, but 99% of the time, I found windows crashes to be due to poor hardware. At least in the 2k/xp world. 9x just crashed on a whim. I easily get several-month uptimes now that I have a UPS. However, I would expect that a beta/rc software would not be that stable. As for not ready for the prime time - well, there are a lot of bugs that don't involve stability.
      • I'm going to agree with you there. Whenever I see a Blue Screen in XP, my first thought tends to be a hardware problem. XP is pretty darn stable, although it runs slow as shit after you have been using it for about a year. Why can't MS build an OS that doesn't need significant work just to keep it running smoothly?
      • by RobertM1968 ( 951074 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:25AM (#16058678) Homepage Journal

        I would tend to agree with you - mostly. On a properly maintained machine I'd agree - except for NTFS file system errors (often caused by the bundled third party drive management utils like the "MS" defrag tool).

        Now, on an "improperly" maintained machine, I find an equal amount of bluescreens and crashes to be due to virii and spyware that's corrupted an XP install/taken over critical services/etc.

        The question is, should we not count those in the total because the end-users should be "properly" maintaining their machines (ie: patches, AV and AS software, a real firewall, etc) - or do we count those towards the total # of crashes/BSODs and hold MS responsible because they released an OS that had so many unresolved issues (after all, many of the buffer overflow/underrun issues have existed in the code since the NT4/2000 days)?

        The unfortunate thing about this debate is that depending on what you believe the end-user/MS is responsible for, no matter what you assert, you are correct (based off your assertations).

        I'm not arguing either side, btw. I'm just pointing out that either answer is "right" depending on the base premise behind it - which many here and elsewhere differ on (and is yet another debate in it's own right).

        • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

          Now, on an "improperly" maintained machine, I find an equal amount of bluescreens and crashes to be due to virii and spyware that's corrupted an XP install/taken over critical services/etc.

          I'll grant you that well enough - the problem is, with the average user, that would happen on just about any system that became sufficiently popular.

          The question is, should we not count those in the total because the end-users should be "properly" maintaining their machines (ie: patches, AV and AS software, a real

      • Get it through your head!

        Alpha means: "We're still working on it, but it kind of works, so go play with it."

        Beta means: "Nothing major's going to change, but we want you to test it and help us shake out the bugs."

        Release candidate means: "None of our Beta testers or developers can break it anymore."

        If bugs are found in rc1, you fix them and put out rc2. You keep doing this until an rc -- no matter how late, could be rc15 -- survives for a fixed amount of time (usually measured in months) without any bug
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by jspectre ( 102549 )
      add 'em up and you got "not ready for stable prime time".. in other words, it's windows!
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by cepayne ( 998850 )
      Didn't your parents ever teach you to "Never buy the *first* of anything".

      Wait till the quirks (in this case - huge gaping holes) are
      worked out before investing in that new $3000 computer to
      run Vista. ;-)

      • Not trying to be a troll here, but I just purchased a computer (refurbished) for $399 that will (should) run Vista just fine, in Super Deluxe Aero Glass mode, or whatever it's called. You're not the first person I've heard proporting the rumor that it will require a new $3000 computer, but from what I can tell, that's just not true. Even with my 1.5 year old computer, I will just need to get a new video card, and it should run fine, too.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by hackstraw ( 262471 ) *
        Didn't your parents ever teach you to "Never buy the *first* of anything".

        Being that new stuff gets bought all the time, I guess there are many kids/adults who had parents that did not teach them this vital lesson in life.

      • Re:Interesting spin (Score:4, Interesting)

        by Khuffie ( 818093 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @10:09AM (#16058971) Homepage
        My 4 year old machine (Athlon XP 2200+, Radeon 9700 Pro, 1 Gig ram) ran Vista fine, with Aero turned on. This was Beta 2, which was far, far worse in terms of performance than RC1.
    • Just assume the tech journalists have nothing to talk about.

      Nothing to see here. Move along.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Alien54 ( 180860 )
      Mind you, "expected" is relative given how many users regard their frequent crashes as normal operation for a PC.

      This is, of course, the default result of how Microsoft has designed their software over the past ten or twenty years. You could argue that this is 20/20 hindsight (which is probably somewhat true), or the fault of those thousands of hardware and software vendors who wrote for Microsoft.

      Of course, Microsoft could have gone the closed route that Apple used, but it seems that would have cost
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Danga ( 307709 )
        How many users regard their frequent crashes as normal operation for a PC?

        Since I have been using XP I do not regard frequent crashes as a normal operation and everytime it has occured it was due to hardware such as bad RAM. XP has been rock solid in my experience, I actually have only had to reinstall the whole OS once since I first installed it when it was released 5 years ago, and the reason I had to reinstall was because the hard disk I had it on went bad. As long as you have half a brain and take rea
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by DrBdan ( 987477 )
      My first reaction to these two articles was to think that they are opposite views coming from the pro-MS and anti-MS camps. However, the terms are relative here so they aren't mutually exclusive. "more stable than expected" could mean that the testers expected nothing to work and that Vista would crash every five minutes. If Vista ran okay and only crashed once every couple hours that would be "better than expected" but still not ready for prime time. Given that these reviews are totally subjective they
  • by Dareth ( 47614 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @08:59AM (#16058534)
    Seemed to be bit of trouble logging in to Slashdot this morning...?

    Taco, please tell us you are not testing Vista RC1 for Microsoft!
  • by thelost ( 808451 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:01AM (#16058544) Journal
    OK, I've been running windows XP without reinstalling it for over 3 years. In that time the only reason I've seen it crash is problems with 3rd party apps going haywire.

    If you're going to bash Vista, bash it on something more interesting and true like for instance DRM issues. Windows bashing might be a past time on slashdot, but you would think by now people would have refined their techniques beyond "Windoze is teh crashering thing, shnarf!".
    • by Magada ( 741361 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:09AM (#16058585) Journal
      Erm. While XP is Microsoft's most stable OS to date, supporting (indeed, enabling) 3rd party apps is exactly what an OS should do in the first place, and do well. This job description specifically does NOT include the necessity for the kernel to barf on "illegal operations" performed by 3rd party apps which run (in theory) solely in userspace. Yet, this happens, by your own admission, a lot in XP.
      • by bheer ( 633842 ) <rbheer@gm a i l .com> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:26AM (#16058688)
        > This job description specifically does NOT include the necessity for the kernel to barf on "illegal operations" performed by 3rd party apps

        Because, of course, God knows 3rd party apps cannot run in kernel mode.

        I've seen a lot of machines run XP, and all the bluescreens I've encountered have been due to a bad wifi card driver written by a company that had gone bust, and an IT department sniffer app (Centennial's Discovery) that would run once a day and invariably blue-screen if a virtual PC was running at the same time.

        (And these things are pretty easy to troubleshoot if you bother to look at the crash log files, heck there's even a tool for it [] these days.)
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by thelost ( 808451 )
        I never suggested that this happened a lot in my experience, but that it does happen. It also happens when I work on my laptop running Ubuntu, should I start making sarcastic comments about linux? It's very rare that programs do crash, and the ones that do are usually ports from linux or in beta. beta software being buggy, who wudda thunk it.

        Also I very rarely have to reboot because of 3rd party app problems, I generally just ctrl+alt+del to sysinternals excellent free process explorer and kill the offendin
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by gad_zuki! ( 70830 )
        >rd party apps is exactly what an OS should do

        Shitty 3D drivers and hardware is not MS's fault. I dont call Linus a bastard because tux racer doesnt work on my old HP box. In fact, MS has done a surprisingly decent job of helping push out stable drivers with their signed drivers program. Their NT based products are actually pretty nice. The Dos/Win95 stuff, not so much. Most crashes nowadays can be traced to poor drivers or failing hardware.

        Of course this ignores drm, wga, licensing, costs, bundled app
      • ... since he apparently doesn't know that 3rd party apps don't necessarily run in userspace.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Fookin ( 652988 )
      I have to agree with this as well. The only time I've every seen a BSOD or any instability issues in my XP Pro installations is either with a hardware issue (SATA Cables, I'm looking at you) or with really crappy software.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by gregmark ( 750089 )
      Necessary, no. Justified, yes. Since the dawn of Windows95, Microsoft has consistently failed to deliver a stable/secure/high-performance OS without numerous updates and third-party software accessorizing. Until they unveil a major OS release that is as impressive as MacOSX or Ubuntu, I think we are more than justified in dispensing assorted belittlements at their many struggles, particlularly the long, pathethic slog that has been the Vista development path.
      • Have you ever looked at the number of updates to any linux distribution over a single year time?
        Have you ever seen an article about MS getting sued because they included something that was previously a "third-party software accessory"? (WMP over realplayer, etc)
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by diersing ( 679767 )
          You can't use logic or fact to argue with a decades worth of "I'm smarting then you" finger wagging. Its far easier to sit back, take pot shots and feel superior.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Yeah, no kidding. I've been a sysadmin of mostly MS networks and haven't seen a Windows box blue screen on my network in over 5 years. Yes, your reading that right Windows = 5 years no crash over several thousand machines. For those who claim they constantly get BSOD's out of windows, please stop doing whatever you are doing to your PC. Windows may be a closed system, but it's not rocket science to keep it stable.
    • Security. Real security built in and operational, not just some boxes ticked. That means normal user accounts running unprivileged and decent permissions on system directories and files by default...

      I won't hold my breath.

    • Yeah, I was gonna say, what crashes? I've been a pretty big Mac guy for years, but I have to concede that until very recently Windows has pretty much always crashed less frequently. That is, since I stopped buying crappy hardware. Seriously, my last (very budget) PC was a crashy mess. This time I spent more for everything, and aside from a crappy nVidia driver problem that precludes certain games from running, I haven't really had any crashes that I can remember. Only problem is that I could have bought a M
    • by neoform ( 551705 )
      Nah, if you're going to bash windows, it should be on it's predictable way of self destructing every 6 months that ends up needing a resintall.
    • by Ucklak ( 755284 )
      Well, you let it go without reinstalling it for 3 years.
      You can't tell me that your registry bloat, poor paging, and slow boots aren't slowing you down, you're just putting up with it.

      That's because it is such a pain in the ass to reinstall Windows and your application base now that we'll put up with the crappy performance Windwos gives us after a couple of years.

      98 was a breeze, specify the ini file with the Product Key and 30 minutes later, you're in.
      Load video card drivers, sound card, reboot.

      Now, you're
  • Ye, ready... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    From TFA:
    he does not think another release candidate will be required before ... the OS is sent off for manufacturing

    Followed swiftly by:
    [he] said the OS needs some work in terms of its UI ... The test version "does lack some of the UI polish we were expecting at this point", he said.

    By the same writer. Methinks he doesn't really understand the term "Release Candidate".
  • by Koyaanisqatsi ( 581196 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:05AM (#16058562)
    Of course the expectations should be high. While 98 and Me were pure crap, XP Pro is very robust. My home machine goes months without a reboot - except when a patch demands it, and the work computer goes from monday to friday just the same.

    Overall I think a well-kept XP box is very stable indeed, and I'm not expecting a bit less than that from Vista.

    just my 0.03(*)

    (*) adjusted for inflation ...
  • by mrjb ( 547783 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:05AM (#16058564)
    Andrew Brust called driver compatibility Microsoft's "biggest impediment" to getting Vista out in time. "Driver compatibility will be key," he said.

    Is the driver format the same as before or has it changed again? I wonder how many hardware manufacturers are going to need to port their drivers and how much hardware will break again this new release. Also, while these hardware manufacterers are at it, they might give a thought to setting up a cross-platform codebase for their drivers, which will benefit everyone in the long run.
  • What crashes? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Vermyndax ( 126974 ) <vermyndax@galax[ ] ['yco' in gap]> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:07AM (#16058573) Homepage
    I know it's easy and fun to poke fun at Microsoft for past Windows releases, but the day of "constant Windows crashes" and unexplained BSOD's have been gone for a few years now. Notwithstanding the large amounts of virii and security issues that must be dodged, Windows XP has been stable and rock solid for a number of years. Many of the stupid instability issues that Linux users like to poke fun at have been eliminated for a while and honestly, a rag like Slashdot should give them a little more credit sometimes. It would be nice if people would stop leting their elitist attitude about Linux muck up an objective viewpoint about other operating systems.

    As a matter of fact, up until SuSE 10.1, Linux and its various programs have been far more unstable than Windows XP. Again, that's not counting viruses and security problems. Almost every Linux distribution I've ever installed ended up going down in flames because of silly bugs, unexplained SIGSEV 11 windows and hardware compatibility issues. Try relying on many of the communities built up around Linux and you're often met with the elitist attitude that quickly turns most people off.

    I'm not trying to troll here (although I'm sure I'll be modded that way because I realize many of you just don't want to hear all of this), but the last line in this story provoked me. I'm trying to help the Linux community with this commentary, not flame it. I want to believe in Linux, but the issues on most distros boggles my mind... how can something so buggy earn a reputation of reliability?

    Extra points for people who point out that the editor said "PC" and not "Windows" when talking about crashes. We all know what they really meant.
    • Re:What crashes? (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Otter ( 3800 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:26AM (#16058684) Journal
      I can't stand Windows, I'd would far prefer if my job let me have Linux running Crossover Office (or better yet, a Mac). But this line about stability is like the other ancient myth about running on older hardware -- it was true in 1998, when Linux users were running vi in an xterm on fvwm, and it's true today if you run vi in an xterm on fvwm, but once you start using all the stuff that's Finally Ready For The Desktop, the stability problems and bloat are at least as severe as Windows.
    • by Sancho ( 17056 )
      Plenty of people go day-to-day with Linux and never see the errors you're reporting.

      My biggest beef with X Linux distro is that it's a painful job to get it to interoperate with other computers in many ways. Setting up Samba isn't one-touch like it is in Windows, and don't even get me started on WPA. I run Linux-only on my main machine and FreeBSD-only on my work machine. I might get an unexplained error once every couple of months, but it definitely feels longer. Meanwhile, my wife's Windows box crashe
    • You may have a hardware problem, check for faulty RAM. I haven't had a sigsegv 11 in years.

  • Come on, editors (Score:5, Interesting)

    by knightmad ( 931578 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:07AM (#16058575)
    From TFA:

    Submit to: Digg Slashdot

    I clicked on the link to Slashdot, and it creates a template for the exact submission that we are reading. Why not to cut some corners and, instead of requiring an user to click on the link, to subscribe slashdot to the rss feed of that site and automatically post the news here. Mod me down all you want, but accepting a story created by the very own site that posted the article and not even adding anything meaningful to it is way too much laziness, even for slashdot
  • by Himring ( 646324 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:08AM (#16058581) Homepage Journal
    Having over a decade of IT career behind me, one of the most amazing things I have come to experience in the IT/corporate world is Microsoft infallibility. It is equivalent to dealing with right-wing Christians and their belief of the infallibility of scripture -- no matter how much you point out the flaws.

    Or, rather, it is more of a, "Microsoft will get it right in the end." No matter how many times a network goes down due to a minor piece of malware, no matter how many support calls are generated by spyware/adware -- so bad that it has reached the point that techs would rather re-image than try to repair, no matter how many crashes and instability issues, people blindly defend, support and believe in Microsoft. And I'm talking about veteran, senior, experiences IT folks.

    Even though they know to keep the big money on a mainframe Unix box, even though they know that it makes more sense to run a hardened Cisco device instead of a Windows-based network node, they are devoted to the Windows workstation and the Windows mid-server solution.

    And, if you dare promote open source -- firefox, linux, apache, sendmail -- solutions you are darn near ostracized. It has reached the point now that I follow, in-line, rather than risk the flames.

    I'm not sure what to call it exactly, but people tolerate Microsoft like no other company. If any other vendor's products barely hiccups, there is talk, quickly, of replacing it -- and they do, but Windows is as fixed within the corporate world as Everest. Thoughts of removing it being akin to getting rid of desk chairs. It simply will not happen.

    It has reached, IMO, a place where every big, corporate business wants to be -- embedded to the point of religion....

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Aladrin ( 926209 )
      And you continue to support that religion by allowing those you work for to support it.

      I work in a fairly small company, but it didn't take ANY EFFORT AT ALL to convince the management and owners that Windows was bad. Most of the tech department uses linux (1 Mac) and all the servers are linux. All of customer service is Mac. We have 3 machines that we can remote into if we absolutely HAVE to use IE to do our job. Once IE runs on Mac, we'll be investing in that CodeWeavers software heavily and ditching
      • "I understand it's quite a bit harder to convince management in a huge mega-corporation. One way to convince them is to simply refuse to work for a mega-corp that doesn't listen. Once they find they can't get decent people without listening to them, they'll listen."

        From your comment, it is obvious that you do not understand. You have refused to work for them, they still use Windows. They will continue to get decent people.

        You're happy, and I'm happy for you. Others work for those corps and are happy too
    • by lawpoop ( 604919 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:21AM (#16058663) Homepage Journal
      I'm no conspiracy theorist, but as David Icke puts it, people have out-sheeped sheep. You know sheep, those mindless, braying, follow-the-leader stupid animals? They need a dog to keep them from wandering off. But people don't even need a dog to keep them in line -- they worry about what the other people will think.
    • by Esion Modnar ( 632431 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:25AM (#16058679)
      a place where every big, corporate business wants to be

      Every big corporate business with aspirations to be evil sees Microsoft as a comrade. Of course they want to do business with them.

  • Just hand it over from the "reviewer" to a regular user, give them internet access and about 15 minutes, and see how Vista handles those toolbars, spyware, etc. I bet it's slow and irreversably wonky in short order.
  • by Toreo asesino ( 951231 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:12AM (#16058603) Journal
    [*sigh* I'll guess I'll copy+paste my rejected story.....]

    Windows Vista RC1 [] has been made available to the general public, with keys available here [].

    There are various [] websites [] that report this build is far more stable than previous versions, but as Microsoft themselves have said [] "quality will continue to improve. We'll keep plugging away on application compatibility, as well as fit and finish, until RTM"

    These builds are set to expire on June 1st 2007

  • It is Stable But... (Score:3, Informative)

    by da' WINS pimp ( 213867 ) <.moc.liamg. .ta. .72trad.> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:12AM (#16058604) Journal
    After running beta 2 on my production box for +/- two months now I can say yes it is stable. It even runs Civ4 better than XP. I expect the same from RC1 when I install it later today.

    The real issue is has M$ the fixed the things that needed fixing. For instance the "annoy-the-user-to-death" security model [] and the undocumented symlink thing [] that even as administrator gives you a unfixable security warning when you try to make changes or follow the link.
  • What's Expected (Score:3, Insightful)

    by rlp ( 11898 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:12AM (#16058605)
    I expect Windows Vista to be a remarkably stable and reasonably secure operating system - AFTER Service Pack 1.
  • LeBlanc said Microsoft has made performance and stabilisation tweaks that testers requested after Beta 2.0, and the latest test version of the OS - which could be the final one before Vista is released to manufacturing - is solid enough for regular use.

    I'm baffled. Does this mean that the performance and stability issues in earlier builds (and XP) were only there because we forgot to request them to be removed/fixed?

    Looks like it's time to make a Christmas list of other things that MS should have done

  • yay (Score:5, Funny)

    by cwebb1977 ( 650175 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:14AM (#16058622) Homepage
    Even smaller applications such as Solitaire and Minesweeper games have a next-generation look and feel in Windows Vista RC1, Brust said. "It's a trivial example, but it shows a certain attention to detail [on the part of Microsoft]," he said.
    Just what I f*cking wanted. New-look minesweeper. Thanks!
    • Experience Index (Score:5, Interesting)

      by norminator ( 784674 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @10:26AM (#16059080)
      I'm just glad that my 2 year-old laptop (P4, 2.66GHz, 512MB, 32 MB NVidia 5100) barely meets the minimum requirements for minesweeper and solitaire (I get an "Experience Index" of 1.0)... it's too bad it doesn't meet the recommended requirements for it, though. It definitely won't run fancy Aero-Glass.

      Nevermind that it handles XGL/Compiz very, very well in Linux, for some reason it's not up to par for the "optimal experience" in displaying windows and playing very basic games.
  • Semantics (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Ajehals ( 947354 ) <> on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:16AM (#16058632) Homepage Journal
    "more stable than expected".

    Doesn't necessarily say a lot.

    Now I don't use any MS Software any more but it'd be nice if rather than hype, speculation and derision there was some constructive discussion out there in the main stream media so that people could decide what to do when Vista is released, maybe not yet but just before or even after the release.. Oh except it will arrive on 90% of PC's pre installed so it will gain a dominant market share in 2-5 years regardless of reviews, hype, bugs, features, security or anything else..

    What's the point. I use Linux, some use BSD, Windows, Mac OS or whatever (please add your own preference here). Regardless of how easy it is to install an OS, most people never will, so most people will stick to what their PC comes with, so all this talk will have a tiny effect on the general populate.

    So at the end of the day its not important how stable, secure, feature packed, or "cool" this piece of kit is, is it?

    The question is how do you change that?

  • I'm sold! (Score:5, Funny)

    by 10Ghz ( 453478 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @09:24AM (#16058672)
    Even smaller applications such as Solitaire and Minesweeper games have a next-generation look and feel in Windows Vista RC1

    That settles it! Come on Vista, my credit-card is ready!
  • by Shiptar ( 792005 )
    I must be ancient, but wasn't there a time when people objected to the soul stealing product activation in Windows XP? I mean it may be rock solid stable no reboot for months on end, but has the activation changed? I can't believe how many people on Slashdot are now willing to submit to such privacy invasion and hardware monitoring. While paying them to do it. What happened here???
  • When it is released and avaiable for purchase, have someone review it like any other product, make one post, and be done with it. We don't need to hear about or debate everytime a developer in the Windows group sneezes or a random blogger decides to write their personal conclusions on a product that isn't even released
  • Issues with Windows (Score:5, Interesting)

    by RAMMS+EIN ( 578166 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @11:12AM (#16059429) Homepage Journal
    It seems people saying that "Windows never crashes these days" are getting a lot of mod points in this thread. It's absolutely true that Windows has gotten a _lot_ better in this regard. However, of all people I know, the ones who use Windows are the only ones I hear complaining about the stability of their systems. I know Windows has mysteriously rebooted my system a few times. My mom has a computer that often doesn't get to the login screen before it BSODs, but it will run fine for days under Ubuntu. Windows crashes are not gone yet, despite what your individual experiences may be. Also, even if they had been completely eliminated in one or two versions of Windows, Microsoft's reputation for making unstable operating systems would still have been deserved - because of all the others.

    Secondly, there's a difference between the system not crashing and the system working well. If the system gets infested by malware, but keeps doing what the user wants it to be doing, the user may not notice anything wrong, but it's still a bad system. Microsoft seems to be very serious about improving this in Vista, introducing features like address space layout randomization, which helps a lot against certain types of attack, and WHICH MANY LINUX DISTRIBUTIONS STILL DON'T INCLUDE! (I'm a long time OpenBSD user, and I don't sleep soundly at night without the pro-active security measures that make buffer overruns (one of the most common classes of vulnerability) nearly impossible to carry out).

    The main problem that people around me have with Windows these days is usability. The knowledgeable folks complain about the constant stream of patches, virus scanner updates, the need to periodically scan the system for malware, etc. and the fact that they have to do this not only on their own systems, but also on those of their non-knowledgeable friends and family. The non-knowledgeable complain about the difficulty of certain tasks: getting the new printer to work, getting pictures off the digital camera and on a CD-R, not being able to figure out how to tell the machine which of the available connections to use, etc.

    What I see when I look at Windows is lots of ugly grey boxes with christmas tree decorations around them, and about the only thing that is consistant among applications is that questions will have [Ok] and [Cancel] for answers, being less than informative about what's actually going to happen when you click either button (and yes, users do get confused by that). And there's no package manager that provides a single point to get all your software updates from, let alone one that automatically tracks dependencies.

    I notice this, because on other systems (OS X, GNOME, KDE), these situations are noteworthy; typically, the system has some good looking theme applied, applications are built on a toolkit that handles sensible layout of widgets, and buttons have text on them that tells you what's going to happen when you click that button (thank you, Apple, for your Human Interface Guidelines). Also, my printer and scanner are immediately recognized and usable when I plug them in, and so is my webcam under Linux. Other people have reported similar experiences (the story is different for wireless network cards, but the situation seems to be improving rapidly). Depending on what system you use, all this may or may not be the case (many, many Linux distros suck at usability), you may or may not have a good package manager (OS X doesn't, for example), and there may or may not be a constant flood of updates (Ubuntu Dapper has one, Debian stable doesn't).

    Alright, this is long enough. I'm not going to talk about anything else.
  • by Pengo ( 28814 ) on Thursday September 07, 2006 @01:07PM (#16060394) Journal

    It's been running great for me. I installed it onto a separate IDE drive, thinking I would be right back over to XP after a couple days like I was with Beta 2, but thus far I am quite impressed with what I am seeing.

    Note: I did disable the user access control. I don't have to see the annoying popups flashing my screen like I did before, also I am running on modern hardware. (Athlon 4400+ X2, 2 gigs ram, ATI 1600XT). I downloaded the ATI Vista RC1 drivers and they seem to work fine.

    The performance doesn't feel degraded like Beta 2 felt, from XP. I have all the graphics options cranked up and it feels snappy and responsive.

    Programs that I use frequently work great. I spend a lot of time doing Java dev on Linux server, so I have Putty open w/20 browser windows. My email client is GMail and I use IM clients from most of the networks. Office 03 runs fine, haven't had a glitch yet with that. On my free time I do play World of Warcraft, and once I disabled the UAC and installed the ATI drivers, it works great. I can tab out without any problems, and I have fewer problems tabbing in and out of the game than before. I don't know if it's my imagination , but the game actually feels faster and I have less stutters when tabbing in from another program. (I think the process affinity would attach to the second core.. not sure what exactly was causing it in XP, but I haven't yet run into that problem).

    I disabled the Sleep functionality over time, the monitor will turn off after an hour.. but when I leave the 'sleep after x-time' , it has a problem waking up. It's likely drivers or something on my hardware that's causing problems.

    I know this post will probably get modded down, as it's not a 'I hate Microsoft Ubuntu4tehwin!!11' , but I would go so far to say that I will likely just keep using RC1 until Vista ships, and I don't think I will have a problem going out and buying the OS once it hits the shelves. (OEM of course!) :) I am a early adopter, I love trying new things.. so even though I am having a great experience with RC1 thus far, I am sure it's not for everyone. Maybe I have been lucky to have hardware that it runs well on and I am not experiencing the problems others are having.

    If I can give one word of advice, is to disable the UAC until programs your running frequently have had time to test their own QC against running in a more protected environment.

    BTW, I grabbed a copy of RC1 off a Torrent and installed it with my Beta2 key without any problems. ;-) Give RC1 a shot, my guess is it will pleasantly surprise you.

One can't proceed from the informal to the formal by formal means.