Saturday, June 24, 2006
Vista Beta: Impressions
It sucks. To be fair, I installed it on my laptop, which has integrated graphics, and so the "glass" UI that's supposed to be all the rage isn't available to me. In stead, the windows are colored gray and gray, with shades of gray. It seems also that in order to show off the translucent effects that I can't enjoy, the margins on all the windows was thickened. I think it's annoying. I'm sure it looks pretty with a fancy expensive graphics card. There are other things that annoy me that have nothing to do with cosmetics. Drivers are an issue. My display was stuck at 16 colors, which made the buttons on the title bars invisible, and therefore useless. I was able to reset it to fix that, but there is no driver for my ethernet controller. My photo printer won't work in Vista, ever, since it's a model that HP has stopped supporting. The most annoying thing by far is the interruptions. Vista seems to think that giving it attention is more important that whatever I'm trying to actually do. The whole screen dims, and a single window pops up that asks you condescending questions, t and gives you options that don't cover all possibilities. The configuration settings are also re-arranged from XP, but that's to be expected. What wasn't expected was that the "My Documents" folder has disappeared, supposedly this has been replaced by indexed searching features. The folder is still there, but it's a jumbled mess of hidden and system files. Perhaps it's not as bad on a clean intall. I have my XP installation backed up, at least in theory. I'm not sure if I'll try a clean install of Vista. It may be better to wait until I get my next laptop. Vista is a bit ckunky on this 2GHz P4 with 512MB RAM. If I get a Mac, a free Vista lisence might come in handy. Macs tend to have beefy graphics cards and nice specs, but then again the cost of a Mac laptop will get you a pretty nice Windows laptop. Anyway, my current computing needs seem to be met, as long as I don't install unnecessarily bloated software.