Vista launch press coverage inaccuracies, corrected

With the launch of Windows Vista today I have been watching all of the headlines coming in over at MS News Live. So far, I have read many of the hundreds of reviews posted already. Some of them have some great points while others are shockingly inaccurate. Most surprising was the amount of inaccuracies that I read from some of the most popular news sources and professional news organizations. I’m talking about the mainstream PC publishers such as PC World, ZDNet and the national and local television stations that have short segments with their resident tech “expert.”

There has been so much crap spoken and written about Windows Vista today that I felt that it was necessary to clear up some of the confusion. I am going to give you my spin free responses based on what I have learned from using Windows Vista everyday for more than a year.

  1. Windows Vista requires more than 512 MB of ram. 1 GB is perfect for most users. Not 2 GB like some reviewers have been writing.
  2. Windows Vista will not physically damage your hardware if you upgrade from Windows XP contrary to what you may hear a certain “expert” Best Buy employee tell you.
  3. Windows Vista is not Windows XP with just some eye candy. Vista is actually based off of Windows Server 2003 code.
  4. Most of the security enhancements in Vista are actually available to consumers and are not only in the business and ultimate versions. True, group policy and bit locker drive encryption are only in the business and ultimate versions.
  5. Windows Vista does break some older games such as Quake 3. Although AMD has told me that will be fixed when they release their final ATI Windows Vista driver that has OpenGL support. Update: ATI has released their final driver with OpenGL support two days ago. Thanks for pointing this out Igor!
  6. Windows Vista when used with no power management features will drain your battery faster than XP. But then again who turns off power management. In vista, many enhancements were made to actually improve battery life by making it easier for developers to write applications that are power mode aware. I have not seen a decrease in my battery life of my Lenovo X60 compared to XP.
  7. Any “expert” that says that you should not buy Windows Vista for security should be locked up and never allowed to write ever again. They obviously have little experience with Vista. Security is the main reason why I will be installing Windows Vista on my parents computers so they will stop calling me about their XP problems.
  8. You need to purchase third-party security products to protect Windows Vista? I don’t and with UAC turned on I am not even running anti-virus. Anyone that says they are absolutely necessary is just trying to sell you crap is may be on Symantec’s payroll.
  9. Windows Vista is not a exact copy of OS X. Yes it is true that many of the features in Windows Vista are already in the latest release of OS X. However, many of those features were in early betas and talked about by Microsoft employees publicly before they were included in the latest release of OS X. Microsoft really dropped the ball when they delayed Vista and gave Apple time to beat them to market with some of these features.
  10. Bitlocker drive encryption will not encrypt your entire hard drive. It will only encrypt partition Windows Vista is on. I sent in a bug report about this several months ago. Last I heard was that it was going to be fixed in SP1.
  11. Most business are not waiting to SP1 to deploy Windows Vista. Many that I have spoken with (Fortune 100 companies) are already running large Vista pilots and plan to have their migrations finished by the end of the year.
  12. There have not been any big lines to buy Windows Vista with the exception of a few places. I think that the fact that most Windows fans that are willing to wait in line for a new OS release at midnight have already managed to get Vista and have been running it for at least since November now.
  13. While it is true that Windows Vista may run slower on older hardware and computers that do not have enough ram. I personally feel that it is still much better with all of the additional applications it comes with combined with the usability and security enhancements to run on a computer even if it will not support the stylish aero glass look. Give it a try, you will see what I mean.
  14. Your machines does not need to have major surgery to be able to run Windows Vista as those Mac v PC commercials claim. After all, they are made by Apple and they are not exactly Windows Vista experts. Most users just need to upgrade ram. Not their CPU! (Thanks Marlone for sending this one in)
  15. If you have hardware that is older than one year old you can still run Windows Vista. Unlike what CBC radio has been telling people in Canada, users have been using Windows Vista on hardware with success that is older than 3 years old. Rei, who sent in this inaccuracy is running Vista Business on his P4 2.4 Ghz machine with 1 GB of ram that he build 3.5 years ago for $800. (Thanks Rei)
  16. Microsoft can not connect to your computer and remove any applications installed on it. They can not really get any information from your computer unless you use Windows Update and then they are only interested in your product ID to see if you have a legal copy of Windows.
  17. The performance of games on Windows Vista with current drivers is about the same as on XP. You are not going to see much of a performance hit or a performance gain right now. Maybe after the display drivers become better we may see some enhancements.
  18. Windows Vista does not crash all the time. Crashing and “blue screens” are a thing of past Windows versions for me. Chances are the only time you will ever see a blue screen is if you have a bad device driver or your hardware firmware is out of date. When installing Vista RC2 I had a blue screen when loading my display adapter. Turns out the driver on the Vista DVD was newer than my Intel video firmware could handle. A quick BIOS upgrade and everything was fixed. (99.9% of blue screens are caused by bad third-party drivers)
    I don’t care if you like Windows Vista or not, the point of this is to set the record straight so that you can make a good decision.
  Windows Vista User Experience (UX) Guide

Did I miss something or do I need to be corrected? Shoot me a message.

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About: Jakob