2007/02/05

Windows Vista Launches: Initial Reports

At the end of January 2007, roughly five years after Windows XP was launched, Microsoft released Windows Vista.

It's interesting to keep track of the initial reactions, reports of problems and comments in the media and on the blogs. An article yesterday mentioned an estimate that 1% of Vista users will experience upgrade problems. That percentage seems like a pretty low number. When XP Service Pack 2 was released, there were reports of upgrade problems for 20% to 30% of the users.

Here are some of the comments and problems read online over the past few days:
  1. Vista consumes 10 - 11 GB of hard drive space and takes from 30 minutes to several hours to install, depending on your setup. Your computer may look like it crashed or hung, but don't re-start the installation because you'll just drag out the process that much longer. Apparently the screen will often not indicate things are progressing, when, in reality, the install is proceeding normally.
  2. Apple iTunes and Vista do not play nice together. Almost all media reports on this topic have mentioned Apple warning iPod users to wait to play with Vista until things have been upgraded. Apple's website does, however, have an iTunes Repair Tool for Vista 1.0, so if you already mixed Vista with iTunes, head to Apple to get that tool. In addition to the iPod, some older Samsung MP3 players didn't mesh well with Vista.
  3. Graphics drivers and video cards can cause problems. Because the final Vista hadn't been released in the wild yet, there were many combinations of hardware/drivers that had not been tested, and video requirements for Vista is apparently one of the more sensitive parts of the system with respect to legacy equipment.
  4. Some casual online games don't work as well with Vista as they might. WildTangent says, "The new Vista operating system has pretty extensive incompatibility with a lot of popular casual games." It's not necessarily all bad if WildTangent isn't compatible with Vista, since WT has been reported to cause problems itself.
  5. There are reports that any QuickBooks versions before 2007 are incompatible with Vista. That could be big!
  6. Vista seems to be a bit finicky regarding the SATA cables; for more details, check out the TG Daily post.
There are plenty more where those came from, so if you are upgrading to Vista, or even installing it clean on a new machine, have an XP computer with internet access handy. If you start having problems, put Google to work to see if anyone else has had the same issue and has published a solution.

For those who don't have to upgrade or buy a new computer, our advice is to wait a couple months before you give Vista a shot.

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