My mom recently bought a new budget-laptop that came installed with Microsoft Windows Vista. Now, I'm no Microsoft fan, especially not when it comes to Windows, but that's just me. It's perfectly fine for my mom and non-power users in general. I basically try to spend the smallest amount of time in Windows as I can. I've got a Windows 2000 machine at work, for billing my hours (yeah, I guess my work couldn't afford a decent billing system that wasn't created at Windows-R-Us) and I occasionally help my parents out with their Windows machines. It's not too bad, as long as I don't have to spend too much time in it.
Since Windows 98, there's been a steady growth in quality in Windows. 98 Pretty much sucked, 2000 was reasonable and XP was very decent. But everything's gone down the drain with Vista. It's amazing how many leaps back an Operating System can make in so much time. I'd already heard how bad Vista was, but it really blew my brain. I've only spend, like, an hour on it, setting it up and (un)installing various applications, but here are some of the things I noticed straight away:
My Deity, this Operating System is slow! I mean, sure, this is a budget PC with just a 1.8Ghz processor and 1Gb of memory, but come on! There wasn't a moment when this machine wasn't swapping like crazy, and all I was doing was updating the virus program and installing Mozilla Thunderbird. That's it! Two tasks, and Vista grinds to a halt. Bye bye multitasking, hello 1992! My mom's old machine was a 300Mhz/380Mb machine running Windows 2000, and it was much, much faster than Vista on her new machine. Unacceptable! Even my MOM thought it was slow, and she was used to a 300Mhz machine!
- Annoying security
The security on this thing is annoying. Just about anything you do causes the screen to darken and a pop-up to appear saying how evil running applications is and how you should be careful, etc, etc. Hello?! We're just running a setup program that wasn't even downloaded off the Internet! Improving security wouldn't have been that hard. Simply make every program that could possibly download anything from the internet (browsers, chat programs, email clients) download all their stuff to a separate 'download' folder, and then warn the user when running something from this folder.
Unless I'm terribly blind and/or mistaken, there are no separate accounts anymore in Super Vista Home Basic Anniversary Edition. I had kind of expected better security of Vista, and most notably, easier account separation so the n00bs could also understand it. Something easy such as installing 'dangerous' programs (Internet Explorer, Outlook) as separate users with separate passwords and then allowing the 'default' user to execute these programs as that user without a password. That would give users a fair amount of protection against not just viruses but also spyware and other nasties. But there's nothing like that at all, and you can't even build your own setup, like I was used to under Windows 2000. That's a bit of a shame. Or totally pathetic, actually. I guess it's back to Windows 95.
After about one hour of working with it, Vista was driving me insane. Most versions of windows have done so, but usually only after I've had to work with them all day long or when I have to install new hardware or do something totally unexpected such as trying out a new application. Vista had me up the wall in less than an hour. Impressive.
There's only one conclusion: I'm installing 2000 again or perhaps get my hands on a second hand XP version (I'm already looking forward to the Gestappo-like activation). Vista's as bad as everybody said it was. Vista's bad, even for a Microsoft product. Wow.