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An open letter to Bill Gates

Robert Peston | 08:48 UK time, Tuesday, 6 February 2007

Dear Bill Gates

Give me back my weekend. I bought a new Windows Vista laptop – and that’s when the trouble began.

My dislike of your new user interface you can put down to the conservatism that comes with advancing years. However having loyally stuck by the galumphing, unaesthetic functionality of your operating systems over the past 15 years, while faced with ridicule from pretentious Mac-loving types, I resent your attempt at an elegance transplant.

But what really grates is that your system is incompatible with two of the vital tools of my trade. Vista refuses to load the software for my newish Olympus digital recorder. And here’s what takes the biscuit. Vista rejects my HP IPAQ handheld device – even though the software for that was created by Microsoft!

So in order to put Vista at the centre of what I do, I would have to buy hundreds of pounds of new hardware. Which may be great news for your industry, but makes me regret never having defected to Steve Jobs. Perhaps now’s the time.

The only thing that gives me any comfort is that I am apparently not alone in my Vista-stress. Over lunch yesterday with the head of a very large media company, I learned of Vista incompatibility problems with financial ramifications that might actually register in Redmond.

My conclusion? For all the expensive and much-extended gestation, Vista was not ready for commercial release. And, just so you know, I’ve never once had a comparably horrible experience with the Google boys.

Yours sincerely

Comments   Post your comment

  • 1.
  • At 09:20 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Gent wrote:

Any non technical person buying Vista as an upgrade is asking for trouble. Wait until SOME of the bugs have been fixed, i.e when service pack 1 has been released

  • 2.
  • At 09:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Peter wrote:

Robert,

Kill the frustration and get a Mac.

  • 3.
  • At 09:28 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Chris, Exeter wrote:

Does this article suggest that Macs are the way forward when I replace my laptop in 12 months time?

  • 4.
  • At 09:29 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike K wrote:

You forgot the golden rule with any new version of Windows - always wait until the first "Service Pack" is released before you install. Let someone else finish off Microsofts testing.

The Google comparision is unair though - its like comparing a Gas boiler in your home to a nuclear Power Station. Google applications just aren't that complex.

  • 5.
  • At 09:31 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tom Willans wrote:

I agree that there are compatability problems with Vista and other software. I have tried to install the latest version of QuarkXpress, version 7, which it refused to do. QuarkXpress is one of the two major desktop publishing software used by professionals, hence is vital for me.

I have therefore had to re-install a version of XP. I bought the Vista version because a valid version of XP would not activate - it now, magically, does! grr.

I also use Macs; they seemed to handle the upgrade to both their latest operating system and the new processor much more smoothly.

  • 6.
  • At 09:31 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Murray wrote:

Today, I was going to buy a Vista laptop thank you for your timely warning!

Perfect, well written!
I like the comparisons to Google and Apple. Microsoft are in a position where they no longer are even able to learn from competitors. This product that you've just used and regret using, they spent half a decade on that! Way to go!

  • 8.
  • At 09:32 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mel wrote:

Ah, idiocy. Blogman, I must say, blaming Microsoft for your drivers not working is a strange way to do it. Considering they are NOT ALLOWED to create drivers for said Olympus camera, you should be blaming Olympus. Driver compatibility has ALWAYS been an issue, its not MS's fault that new drivers haven't been released. Now for that HP Ipaq, the main software was created by Microsoft, but again, the Synching drivers were by HP, meaning blame should lie with them. Blaming MS for advancing the core of their Operating system, and Manufacturers not keeping up, is ridiculous.

Dear Robert Peston,
Microsoft proudly states that several million of us were involved in the Beta/ Release Candidate process for Vista. Unfortunately there is little evidence that they took much notice of the voluminous response and crowds of bug-reports they received.

Yes, Vista is going to be a very problematic upgrade for an awful lot of people - but people are still going to do it, aren't they?

It will take a lot more than a few little financial catastrophes to release Microsoft's grip on the personal computer market - but there are increasing numbers of people who realise it may be time to move on from Windows.

  • 10.
  • At 09:34 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Pete wrote:

This just makes me even more certain that the public are just unpaid beta testers for Microsoft. As with any of their products I always wait until the first service pack before trying it out.
I bet your laptop battery life will plummet with Vista compared to XP as well.
Best of luck

  • 11.
  • At 09:35 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Greig wrote:

It is hardly fair to blame MS for the lack of a 3rd party driver for your recorder. It is up to Olympus to provide this and your ire should be aimed at them. After all they had plently of warning Vista was coming.

The IPAQ problems seem a little strange, though I suspect a solution is/or will be available soon.

  • 12.
  • At 09:36 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mash wrote:

Simply.... Get a Mac....!

  • 13.
  • At 09:38 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jon S wrote:

I have not had a single problem upgrading to Vista. It seems that the author is blaming his problems on software written by Olympus, software written by HP, and software written by Apple.

HP customizes the specific interface used on PocketPCs. Apple would never launch OS X 10.5 without working iTunes.

The first beta of Vista was released in September 2005. Where have these vendors been?

  • 14.
  • At 09:41 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Alan Taylor wrote:

This report is far from untypical. There have been many similar ones.

The BBC should urgently reconsider their plans to align so closely with Microsoft for technology to enable digital video distribution.

When the biggest software creator in the world can spend five years writing an operating system that has had so many problems in less than a week, there is something very wrong indeed.

Users shouldn't need to wait for service pack 1. Vista was widely available for testing long before it was released. How come all these fundamental problems still weren't fixed by the date of release ?

Why should an operating system upgrade be something that only a technical person should undertake ? I thought computers were supposed to be smart and to be able to do things for themselves.

  • 15.
  • At 09:45 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Randeep wrote:

wait for atleast six months for matured vista xperience

  • 16.
  • At 09:45 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Beps wrote:

I’m sure many will remember the shift from Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X; the same applied (possibly to a greater extent) and my G4 ran dual operating systems for its entire lifespan.

If you’re heavily reliant on third party software, you’d be crazy to jump to any OS in its infancy.

More like kill the frustration and load a copy of Ubuntu.

Then you ask yourself just what you're paying Steve Jobs and Bill Gates for.

'Style accessories' is the only answer I could come up with.

  • 18.
  • At 09:49 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Simon wrote:

Surely everyone knows that Vista is currently not compatible with a lot of the exisiting drivers?

The manufacturers of these drivers will need time to catch up.

In the meantime go into an Apple shop and have a look at the competition, i switched recently (From Windows) and find the mac much easier to use.

  • 19.
  • At 10:03 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David wrote:

Get a Mac, you idiot. Sheesh. How many times does it have to be said?

  • 20.
  • At 10:07 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jorn Madslien wrote:

I went the other way and bought an XP machine a few weeks ago. Dirt cheap and perfectly good enough for word processing, spreadsheets, surfing the web, making free calls, coordinate diaries with PDAs. Sure, it'll be considered out of date quite soon, but then again it'll be better than my 12-year-old PC - which in truth also works fine. The idea that everyone needs Hollywood-calibre editing studios and Emap-style layout packages in their homes is laughable. And if you play games, surely it's better to get a console? If you like music, buy a decent stereo. And if you like films? My wife once asked me how many hours of babysitting we could get for the price of a home cinema. Surely it's better to leave the building, go to the flicks, have a beer and a pizza?

  • 21.
  • At 10:10 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nads wrote:

Yes, Chris from Exeter, defect to Mac, I can only recommend it: I did the swap about a year ago, after 10+ years with windows (from 3.1 onwards), and I haven't looked back. It's like using a fridge, you open it, use it, close it. No fuss, no problems, very pleasant experience. All my old hardware works, even the 5 yr old printer (which admittedly was already USB-based)

  • 22.
  • At 10:17 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Benson wrote:

It's all very well saying 'Get a Mac' as if everything will be fine and dandy thereafter - but I have encountered endless problems with Macs, the latest being that the new ones with Intel do not like Microsoft Office applications (like Word). I am on my fourth replacement MacBook at the moment and the battery has just died on this one. So not perfect... but still better than Microsoft.

  • 23.
  • At 10:17 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nads wrote:

Yes, Chris from Exeter, defect to Mac, I can only recommend it: I did the swap about a year ago, after 10+ years with windows (from 3.1 onwards), and I haven't looked back. It's like using a fridge, you open it, use it, close it. No fuss, no problems, very pleasant experience. All my old hardware works, even the 5 yr old printer (which admittedly was already USB-based)

  • 24.
  • At 10:18 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Peter Woodall wrote:

Hi Robert

I totally agree with your criticisms of Gates and Microsoft. Frankly why anyone would risk buying any Microsoft product until AT LEAST six months after release, amazes me. They are so prone to security issues, incompatibility issues etc, that to do so borders on being insane.
Personally I extend that timescale to a minimum of 12 months, and even then will not necessarily buy their products. If you have a copy of Office XP why do you need Office Vista? Office XP is more than adequate for any normal expectation. Take Word, as an example, even experienced typists rarely use more than 15% of its capability.

It is high time we all started to seriously consider getting off the Microsoft band wagon and seriously consider other operating systems - particularly Linux. As for Microsoft Office why not consider a free
Open Office - every bit as good and FREE.

I must also comment on my disgust at the interview Hugh Edwards (BBC1 News) had with Bill Gates recently - I though at one point Hugh was going to get on his knees and kiss Bill's
feet.

He "boldly" queried the pricing structure (in the UK you will pay roughly DOUBLE for the same products as bought in the USA) and then let Gates totally off the hook without him having given an answer. What a total waste of time that interview was. Why oh why do they not get the Jeremy Paxman's to tackle the likes of Gates? Hugh was clearly out of his depth. Failing that the BBC should not promote Microsoft products unless the Gates's of this world answer the questions that NEED to be answered. If you do not give them precious airtime they will ultimately see the light and comply.

In summary don't buy Vista, or Office and bring the Microsoft empire to its knees. This is nothing more that sheer exploitation - deliberately making many computers requiring serious upgrading, and in many cases renewal. This is Microsoft playing "Big Brother" to protect the computer industry at large.

Regards

Peter Woodall

  • 25.
  • At 10:18 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sharon wrote:

It amazes me that, given Microsoft's track record on issuing 'New' software, then having to issue patches, not to mention upgrades of all its other software so that they work with the new OS, anyone ever bothers to buy the stuff.

Or do they fall for the advertising hype every time & forget what happened to thousands (or is it millions) the last time?

Us Mac owners have faced plenty of woes in operating system upgrades rendering software/hardware inaccessible over the years. Though Apple have got considerably better at it it's by involving the developers. And they can obsolete their hardware which makes it worse. Apple decide to discontinue the old,and still perfectly functional for a lot of users, Airport card, and people are forced towards a full hardware upgrade vs. a sub £100 expansion to get wireless network access. Well done Apple.

The biggest problem with all of this I see is the need to laucnh, to much fanfare, something new. And the expectations then made of it, without the honesty to explain the issues with something so radically new.

Your problem (old hardware, new system) is akin to trying to play 8-Track tapes on an MP3 player: The record industries approach to this, if it's going to make them enough money they will make the investment to release the recording on a format slightly more compatible with your player (CD), or if not you'll be stuck with your 8 track tape, and no way to use it properly.

Olympus are responsible for their drivers, not Microsoft, and as such its up to them to upgrade. But they already have your money, and they want to make more money from selling you new products, not upgrading old ones, so they won't be in a hurry to re-write all of their device drivers until they receive pressure from their customers to do so. It makes economic sense, for them, to invest in new equipment, not old.

Software upgrades always go hand in hand with hardware upgrades, it's a way of building more obsolescence into perfectly good hardware for a rash of new features, 90% of which never get used by 90%$ of the users - I'm making that statistic up BTW, but will you take advantage of all the new features of Vista, or any new piece of software, most likely not.

The problem here is not Microsoft's new operating system, it is their ability to drive the customers forward in doing what they do best, consuming needlessly.

Mac OS X is great, but changing from Vista to OS X isn't going to fix your computer paraphernalia compatibility issues. Trust me. If it isn't broken, stick with XP a year more, or so. Then check out the offering.

  • 28.
  • At 10:21 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jon Crawford wrote:

Regarding the issue with your Ipaq PDA, you're spot on with your comment stating "Vista was not ready for commercial release". If you take a very close look at the bottom of the "Windows Sync Center" dialog, there's a four letter word watermark ... Beta

I had the same issue with my Pocket Loox 720 PDA; refused to talk to Vista. Then I identified a Pocket PC application that doesn't work in Vista Sync - Radio Times for PDA (!) Un-installed that app via "Program Settings" and now it syncs fine...

  • 29.
  • At 10:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paul wrote:

To all the people saying it's not Microsoft's fault that some devices don't work: rubbish! XP has been out for five years, which means it has thousands of working device drivers. Microsoft made the decision to throw all the driver work of 3rd-party developers in the bin, and now it is paying the price for that choice. They could easily - in the five years of development - have made a temporary compatibility layer that ran drivers at a lower speed, but at least gave people the functionality they need.

Get a Mac: your problems will evaporate. If you're an advanced user (sorry, Robert, I don't quite think that's you), give Linux a try. Yes, it has the same driver problems as Vista does, but at least it's free!

  • 30.
  • At 10:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jon Crawford wrote:

Regarding the issue with your Ipaq PDA, you're spot on with your comment stating "Vista was not ready for commercial release". If you take a very close look at the bottom of the "Windows Sync Center" dialog, there's a four letter word watermark ... Beta

I had the same issue with my Pocket Loox 720 PDA; refused to talk to Vista. Then I identified a Pocket PC application that doesn't work in Vista Sync - Radio Times for PDA (!) Un-installed that app via "Program Settings" and now it syncs fine...

  • 31.
  • At 10:26 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Karl Malcolm wrote:

"Pretentious Mac-loving types" - a quick search on googe for the definition of pretentious reveals the following: "pretentious - making claim to or creating an appearance of (often undeserved) importance or distinction. Can I assure Robert there is nothing pretentious about most Mac-users. The difference is that we enjoy sitting down in front our macs because the whole user experience is usually such a joy compared with the drudgery that is Windows. Come to the dark side, my man ... you know it makes sense ...!!

  • 32.
  • At 10:26 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Steve wrote:

Vista: the best reason yet to switch to Linux.

Linux is maturing at a great rate and doesn't have to wait for updates and innovations to be put into new releases. Microsoft waits years to make major changes, Linux distributions can do this in months or less.

And for me, the big advance that will help Linux in the next few weeks will be the availability of CNR, or 'Click and Run', created by Linspire for it's own Linux operating system, but now to be available for a number of other Linux distributions. CNR makes searching for and installing applications as easy as, well, 'Click and Run'! CNR.com for more info.

Linux is free and is not as complex or as difficult as people assume, you can even download 'live' CD's to boot on your PC, so you can see if you like it and if everything is compatible before you even install it!

Microsoft had a great chance to deliver many innovations in Vista, many of which are still not in the final product.

It's time for change.

  • 33.
  • At 10:26 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil Jobling wrote:

Ahh, remember the "millions of people beta testing the product" well guess what, YOUR one of them.

Every one of Microsofts products have been released relying on users to test them, sometimes (I've heard) they might listen and do something about it.

For me, I'll stick with XP until I have moved all my data into a format that enables a complete removal of MS products, only a couple left then I'll be on the road to safe and easy computing, at last...

  • 34.
  • At 10:27 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ed wrote:

Well Microsoft won't even let me get my hands on a copy of Vista that I was promised when I bought a new laptop in November. Maybe I shouldn't care!

  • 35.
  • At 10:28 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Aditya wrote:

no, no mac
coz its not windows

Gosh, it turns out from most of your responses that it's my fault that my previous laptop has collapsed and that what Microsoft touts as the answer to all my computing prayers can't actually do the most basic things I require of it. Stupid me. Robert

  • 37.
  • At 10:29 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Simon Collett wrote:

Vista's sole purpose for existence is to allow users sytems to operate. It is incredible that customers are spending money on new hardware in order to make software run when the software's only job is to allow the hardware to work.

Us Mac owners have faced plenty of woes in operating system upgrades rendering software/hardware inaccessible over the years. Though Apple have got considerably better at it. However Apple can obsolete their hardware which makes it worse. Apple decide to discontinue the old,and still perfectly functional for a lot of users, Airport card, and people are forced towards a full hardware upgrade vs. a sub £100 expansion to get wireless network access. Well done Apple. They'd rather have people upgrade the hardware because it makes maintaining the operating system, and all the device drivers that go with it, easier.

The biggest problem with all of this I see is the need to launch, to much fanfare, something new. And the expectations then made of it, without the honesty to explain the issues with something so radically new. Standard marketing department involvement to make money from a product as quickly as possible. You wouldn't advise that only experienced users upgrade to your new operating system immediately. What would that say about your company integrity?

Your problem (old hardware, new system) is akin to trying to play 8-Track tapes on an MP3 player: The record industries approach to this, if it's going to make them enough money they will make the investment to release the recording on a format slightly more compatible with your player (CD), or if not you'll be stuck with your 8 track tape, and no way to use it properly.

Olympus are responsible for their drivers, not Microsoft, and as such its up to them to upgrade. But they already have your money, and they want to make more money from selling you new products, not upgrading old ones, so they won't be in a hurry to re-write all of their device drivers until they receive pressure from their customers to do so. It makes economic sense, for them, to invest in new equipment, not old.

Software upgrades always go hand in hand with hardware upgrades, it's a way of building more obsolescence into perfectly good hardware for a rash of new features, 90% of which never get used by 90%$ of the users - I'm making that statistic up BTW, but will you take advantage of all the new features of Vista, or any new piece of software, most likely not.

The problem here is not Microsoft's new operating system, it is their ability to drive the customers forward in doing what they do best, consuming needlessly. It's also that companies are often about fulfilling their own agendas whilst making it look like they are putting the needs of their customers first, rather than honestly thinking about their customers.

People ought to recognize that it is the responsibility of each product manufacturer to provide updated drivers to assure continuity of use with any new operating system. When the first system was put in use that is what manufacturers did; why should the system change now? I've used Microsoft OS since day one and and generally satisfied. I have had more bad meals in restaurants than problems with Microsoft.

  • 40.
  • At 10:33 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Rod wrote:

on a quick trip to google and with limited info on what MODELs you refare to,it seems that the Olympus uses DSS a non standard format... note always a great idea.. but that there are OSX drivers included (DSS Player) so should work with a mac.

and lots of disscussions on Apples OWN website forum about Ipaq s being hooked up through "The missing Link" software (likely freeware, but i havent checked)

the amount of Macs i see on TV ads and TV programmes shocks me, i even saw a "help with using your PC" series of magazines advertised with Macs on their pages!

ive went from XP to linux and finally to Mac, and i have gotten MORE done in less time.

They really DO "just work"

have a look on ebay and get an intel core2Duo Mac Mini as an cheap experiment, they hold their value so if you dont like it and dont end up letting the kids have it, you will not loose a lot of money. give it a month though :) only took me a day to get used to OSX a week to fly on it.

forget microsoft from here on.

  • 41.
  • At 10:38 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Robert Williams wrote:

Yes, that's a good idea -- install a copy of Linux, and in a short while you'll realise that Windows really is a very good operating system indeed. And with far, far better driver support than Linux for that matter, although you don't appear to quite grasp the difference between third party drivers and the operating system (nor the 'slight' difference between small web applications and an entire operating system).

  • 42.
  • At 10:39 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • grahame bristow wrote:

Dear Robert
We're not "pretentious Mac-loving types". We just have jobs to do and want to get on with them, many of us don't understand computers, nor do we want to. We just want to work - and Macs let us do that.

I'm constantly suprised that Bill Gates and his employees haven't worked out yet that the world is not full of techies. When they do, Windows will work.

  • 43.
  • At 10:39 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • aircool wrote:

If he's been using MS products for 15 years (presumably windows) then he'd know that you wait a year or so before adopting the latest iteration. Did he try visiting the websites for his peripherals to pick up Vista drivers? Doesn't sound like it. By the time software goes 'gold' and is released to the public, several months may have passed; it's up to the eqiupment manufacturer to release up to date drivers. Perhaps he should try a Mac, it's obvious he struggles with anything more complicated than a single button mouse.

  • 44.
  • At 10:39 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ronald Shiner wrote:

It seems that adopting Vista is turning out to be a right pain in the proverbial. Boy am I pleased I use a Mac. Looks like Vista is going to be one giant headache for ordinary users and could persuade even more to switch to Mac OSX.

  • 45.
  • At 10:41 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Michael P Chirgwin wrote:

I've owned and worked on both WIN & MAC platforms for many years. Mac OS upgrades come every six months and are often horrendous. (iTunes still cannot reliably catalogue new music files and Firewire is as close as you can get to a direct connection to Hell...)
That said while I can easily get my two XP machines to see the Mac on my home network, the XP machines refuse to see each other...
I've just ordered the Vista upgrade for my new NEC Versa.... I really must be mad.

  • 46.
  • At 10:43 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paul wrote:

You'd think that Vista would bundle drivers for one of the worlds biggest manufacturers simply from a 'plug n pray' point of view, and also to avoid the giant and obvious pot hole of bad reviews due to incompatibilities with existing hardware. Question is really, why did you upgrade? Exactly what in Vista is actually better than the "proven" (i use the term loosely) technology in XP? What do you need that XP doesn't provide? Some flakey extra security that will still require 3rd party products? DX10 which nothing requires yet? Check the mirror, i think you might have 'sucker' writ large across your forehead.

  • 47.
  • At 10:44 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Pilster wrote:

Why not get a Mac? It's the question most Windows users should be asking themselves.
If the upgrade to Vista leaves you needing new hardware (both in your PC and peripheral), what's stopping you shifting platform entirely? Cost isn't that much of a consideration any more. Go price up a pc and a mac, like for like on specs and the price difference is negligible.
Microsoft don't make PCs, so there is no profit for Redmond in insuring compatibility with the Mish Mash of components that your work a day PC is made up of.
Apple provide the whole deal, so when they produce a new varient OS, it just works on hardware they make.
"People who are really serious about software should make their own hardware."
A quote from Alan Kay (...and he should Know).
Perhaps Mr Gates should take note of this rather than spitting his dummy out over the witty Apple "Get a Mac" adverts.

If you want a stable, secure and compatible machine, look under M for Mac.

If you really like to keep your PC but want to break the Microsoft habit, change to Linux.

Don't believe the hype, make your computer do the work, work smarter not harder.

  • 49.
  • At 10:46 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Neil Small wrote:

Wait until SP1 is released? based on past experience I'd wait until they release SP3!!

Go on, you know you need a mac! Now's the time. Quit wasting time faffing about with pcs and GET A LIFE.

  • 51.
  • At 10:48 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • richard wrote:

Macs suck really do and were not talking about apple macs were talking about vista so keep on topic

am so suprised that people havent learned anything with problems when they got xp out for first time theres going to be problems withit because most companys have had time with xp than vista but they have had enough time to update the software. so in away its not microsofts fault its the software companys who dont want to update to fix bugs for the later version

  • 52.
  • At 10:49 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tony Bradley wrote:

If you get a Mac, you're still locked into a single vendor. For true freedom get a brain and get Linux!

  • 53.
  • At 10:50 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • DH wrote:

Go to Linux. You won't spend hundreds of pounds on software created by lunatics, and everything will be more reliable.

  • 54.
  • At 10:50 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • gary wrote:

I bought my Apple laptop this morning and I'm just reading this on it - I've just connected both my camera (Sony) and my phone (SE) (via bluetooth) and copied stuff across and now I'm backing stuff up to the .mac web space - no drivers needed, no hassle - it all just works and I'm by no means an expert. This is why I have given up on PCs - the Mac runs all the software I want from Microsoft as well as others reliably and securely. I would recommend anyone do the same.

  • 55.
  • At 10:50 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • James Nielson wrote:

I agree with the comment that Microsoft customers tend to be unpaid beta testers for new MS operating systems. More accurately, we are required to pay for the privilege of beta-test Microsoft's new products. I learned my lesson with Windows 98... always wait for at least service pack one, and preferably service pack two. By the time they release service pack two, the operating system is finally mature enough (having been tested by millions of paying customers) to be worth the price of upgrading.

  • 56.
  • At 10:50 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Bill Nelson wrote:

@Beps - "I’m sure many will remember the shift from Mac OS 9 to Mac OS X; the same applied (possibly to a greater extent) and my G4 ran dual operating systems for its entire lifespan."

And every previous major OS update from Apple broke earlier software in exactly the same way so the "Just get a Mac" people are obviously recent passengers on the bandwagon. I mean have they even looked at Robert's problem - does Olympus even provide software on the Mac to do what he wants? Does his Ipaq functionality rely on Outlook? Both of these probably rule out Ubuntu or other linux versions too.

Is the main problem that the Vista on the laptop is the 64bit version (probably)? Had it been the 32 bit version you probably wouldn't have been having these problems but would have not been getting the most from it in the longterm.

Not that I'm advocating Vista in any way shape or form but let's try to keep it rational. It's the bloat and DRM overhead that you should be objecting to.

Go on, you know you need a mac! Now's the time. Quit wasting time faffing about with pcs and GET A LIFE.

  • 58.
  • At 10:51 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tim Spence wrote:

I agree with all the comments about drivers - the hardware manufacturers create these, not Microsoft.

As for comparing how Apple Macs work, and how Windows work? Well firstly, even Mac's don't upgrade that well all the time - see Beps comment - and secondly, you're comparing a closed box, with set and known hardware, and software that has been specifically written for it, with a piece of software that is designed to work on an infinite combinations of pieces of hardware, all ranging in quality.

Oh, and if you want a Fisher-Price toy of a computer, get a Mac, with their infinite minor-point upgrades.

  • 59.
  • At 10:51 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew Spencer wrote:

Well, now you know. Never go for a newly released product, be that new models of cars, operating systems, etc.

Always wait at least a year and let other people find out the defects. Once those have been corrected you'll have something a lot more polished and that's when you should dive in.

  • 60.
  • At 10:51 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sam wrote:

Just stick with XP, until Vista releases service packs and software manufacturers make new drivers. XP still does the trick now and still do the trick for a couple of years at least.

Don't get a Mac though, they're shocking.

  • 61.
  • At 10:51 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Rob from Guildford wrote:

I bought a new HP laptop with Vista on it a week ago and I'm taking it back to get my money back. Vista is incompatible with the latest tools of my trade too - Visual Studio 2005. As a programmer, I want to be at the cutting edge, but Microsoft's flagship development environment doesn't run on Microsoft's flagship operating system!! So I thought I'd try to go back to XP, only to find that the drivers (the programs that make the hardware work with the operating system) aren't available for XP. And now I'm busy trying to find a laptop that DOESN'T come with Vista pre-installed. If my work didn't depend on Microsoft, I'd actually be looking at an Apple now. Can't believe I said that!!!

  • 62.
  • At 10:53 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Adam wrote:

As a software developer, and Microsoft Partner, I can defend those responsible for supporting 3rd party drivers. Vista hasn't been an easy Beta to support - for many devices, especially hardware (external and internal), we require a lot of support from the host company. Microsoft have a good developer network, but keeping up with their internal changes is not easy as many aspects of the OS are subject to change over time.

As a Mac developer (as well as PC), I can say that Apple's developer support is much cleaner, even the language is smarter and documentation better presented, organised.

As a Mac and PC user, my wallet is with MacOS, simply because I don't need to worry about the OS - it just works, and you're virtually unaware of it.

Ironically, you may think of Win2k or XP as aesthetically simple and easy to navigate, the truth is that MacOS gives the best Zen-like experience. Vista is prettier, but it's still a game of hurdles. It may be more secure, but as the target of choice for hackers, that won't last for long.

Don't fight with your computer; enjoy working on it. I genuinely hate to use the phrase, but "Get a Mac" is very sound advice.

Regardless of Vista or Mac or any other technology, if you don't do some research then you have a problem. You talk about key tools of your trade, why didn't you check compatability first ? Surely you could have spent 20mins on the internet checking this out. On a separate note "If you play games it's better to get a console" - maybe, but it depends what games you want to play, but in a number of cases no it's not, nor is it better to get a mac. You need to do some reasearch here as well.

  • 64.
  • At 10:55 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Derek wrote:

I'm someone who has worked in the IT industry for 15 years or so.

Past experience would indicate that you are asking for trouble with any Microsoft product if you upgrade too early.

Do yourself a favour, wait at least 6-12 months before upgrading.

Certainly we wont be upgrading for a long time to come. My friends in other sectors of the industry will be doing likewise.

  • 65.
  • At 10:55 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike wrote:

Surely you are more pretentious than the Mac owners you describe?

I suspect the only people who have actually rushed out and purchased Vista are those who need to be seen with the 'latest' technology.

As a Business Editor surely you must have some business nous about you or do you generally buy the first release of a young product?

As for your moaning about 3rd party drivers .. Are you the type that purchases a HDTV and then realises you cant watch EastEnders in HD yet?

Give me back my 5 mins .. I started reading your blog and my troubles begain.

  • 66.
  • At 10:57 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ben Turner wrote:

Agree with Jord that there is no need for the average home user to have expensive equipment (though consoles won't cut it for the games I play). For about the cost of a new OS I added RAM and formatted my hard drive- good as new! Runs everything I want.

  • 67.
  • At 10:58 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ian Turner wrote:

Oh, grow up! What DID you expect? It's a new project, it is HUGE and it is complex beyond your imagination. The concept that any operating system will work FIRST time with every component out there on the first day shows that you are simply a dreamer!

Microsoft, almost single handedly, has given the WORLD the 'cheap pc'. If it had been Apple, your PC would STILL cost £5000 instead of £500!

You want to be an early adopter? Then put UP with it! That's the real world!

And if you think that Apple stuff works first time, everytime with every piece of kit...... just go an BUY one!

Oh yes; Queen Anne is dead!

Ian

  • 68.
  • At 10:59 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

When I wanted a computer I was scared by all the virus/worm/trojan problems with Windows. I have seen friends PCs die slow deaths with them.

So I bought a Mac.

  • 69.
  • At 11:00 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Duncan Chard wrote:

Dear Robert.

It's microsofts fault that the hardware company hasnt bothered releasing drivers for Vista yet?

I'm wondering how you come to that conclusion? You do realise that it is the manufacturers responsiblity to write the software that enables their device to run on an operating system?

It's simply a case of the above named manufacturers being pretty lazy given that Vista has been available for developers for well over a year.

I understand its frustrating using something you don't understand but please at least get the correct company to be angry about.

Simply put there are many thousands more products for Microsoft's operating system than any other - therefore more are going to be unprepared - oh and please buy a Mac.

I'd love to see you take it back after a week.


  • 70.
  • At 11:01 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Neil Golightly wrote:

I agree with Neil Wilson. Macs are overpriced. You've already got the laptop, you don't need to pay out for another one - go and download an Ubuntu Linux CD ( http://www.ubuntu.com/products/GetUbuntu/download ). These can run straight off the CD allowing you to try before you install. It may not be quite as slick and shiny as a Mac, but it's free (and Free).

Are you old enough to remember the launch of Windows 95? I recall much gnashing or teeth, tearing of clothing and general weeping and moaning. It lasted about 6 months until people realised that it was an entirely new operating system with no backwards compatibility. Of course, Microsoft did not help consumers by telling them that but after almost 25 years of using their products I am used to them doing their final beta test by commercially releasing the product (anyone here old enough to remember to Dos 5.0 debacle?). Anyway, as already advised do not bother with this operating sytem until SP1 and if you really must have it make sure your buy it pre-installed of new hardware. Me? I'm sticking with XP Pro until I absolutely have to change.

  • 72.
  • At 11:02 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew Maddison wrote:

To Neil Wilson - PCs and Macs are more than "style accessories" - they are essential tools in many industries, especially print/publishing and media production where tools such as Quark Xpress, Adobe InDesign & Photoshop, Avid and Final Cut Pro have real market dominance - and generally with good reason.

To anyone who thinks Macs are the universal panacea, I imagine Apple have fewer problems with their OS because you also buy your hardware from them. If Microsoft started making PCs and said "buy these or the OS will not work" there'd be an outcry, not least in the European courts.

Finally, I generally blame the hardware manufacturer for not releasing an updated driver to work with a new Operating System, not the creator of the OS. Or blame yourself for assuming that the drivers would have been written by now without checking for yourself.

  • 73.
  • At 11:02 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Nicholas Dalby wrote:

BBC News' impartiality reigns again

  • 74.
  • At 11:02 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Gaz wrote:

I'm already bored of everyone jumping on the "I'm so computer literate I now hate Windows too" band-wagon. I thought there might have been a real story here, other than someone blaming Micro$oft for non-Windows issues. Think a bit deeper, try a bit harder, show a bit of original thought and maybe this would be a better use of space.

More fool you for buying a laptop you don't like the look of, and for not checking whether your two "vital tools of your trade" were compatible! I think you have too much money and make a habit of wagon-jumping!

  • 75.
  • At 11:02 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Johnny wrote:

A lot of comments here smack of blind Microsoft-baiting to me. Bear in mind that the Apple Mac is a proprietary standard, i.e. they control the hardware that the operating system runs on to a much deeper level than Microsoft ever can.

If Apple were faced with trying to get an operating system to run on the plethora of motherboards, hard-drives and processors out there then it would take them longer than five years to develop a new operating system!

  • 76.
  • At 11:02 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dan wrote:

I'm planning on getting a laptop next month for gaming purposes - would you recommend getting a vista, xp or mac one? Cheers!

  • 77.
  • At 11:02 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Chris Copp wrote:

Hi

I switched to a MAC notebook 2 years ago and have never looked back, all those Windows problems and frustrations dissapeared as soon as I turned it on. I have never, ever, had a single problem. A friendly and smart interface, lots a features that I actualy use! Bin the Windows and get a MAC. Say farewell to freezes, hangs, crashes, virus, and all those nasties related to Windows...of course you'll have to put up with shortsighted stockists like PC World shunting MAC owners off to a dusty corner to find the small amount of MAC software on sale!! MAC owners get sterling service from Apple but poor support from everybody else!

  • 78.
  • At 11:03 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stu wrote:

Dear Robert

If you get a piece of wood 6 inches long and chamfered to a point at 25 degrees, you can save quite a lot on the other expensive doorstop. Waiting for the service pack is a very good idea! But why should we have to wait?

  • 79.
  • At 11:03 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Nigel wrote:

I've got a desktop pc and a mac laptop.
Comparing the experiences of using both machines, Apple + new device, software, network = 'Hello, I've found something new and I'm ready to work with it right now', MS OS + new anything = 'Mmm, have you got the disk? No that doesn't seem right. Can I access the internet to ask a friend. Nope, they don't know either. Let's just say the device doesn't work. And just in case your aren't happy with this outcome, the driver that I said that I couldn't find, well I loaded it anyway and now its causing a conflict with another device which I've had to switch off.........

Why would Vista be any different?

  • 80.
  • At 11:04 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • James wrote:

If you really want to have problems getting devices to work, get a MAC.

Microsoft is not responsible for others Hardware and Software. The beauty of MS is that they allow companies to use the Windows OS to run their hardware. For all the ingrates saying "Use a MAC" Why!! Do you want locking into overpriced proprietary hardware and software!!! I can’t understand people who suggest buying other products that reduce your functionality but put it in a pretty box. Weird…

  • 81.
  • At 11:04 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Richard Price wrote:

I asked my computer consultant on Sunday about buying the new machinery and his one liner was: Don't, it's not ready for old f****s like you.

  • 82.
  • At 11:05 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Archibald wrote:

I'm not entirely sure that Microsoft are to blame for your problems. Vista is a big change from XP and it *should* be widely known that most hardware will require new drivers and updated software. The salesperson should have advised you of this.

I'm not sure you can blame Microsoft for Olympus' lack of drivers.

My conclusion is that Vista was ready for release, but hardware manufacturers and 3rd party software providers (eg Novell) aren't ready for it.

  • 83.
  • At 11:05 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • who cares wrote:

Government should charge a very big tax to companies that release unrealiable software. And the patents on software should be limited to 10 years, so when the patent expires there is an incentive to produce an upgrade that really is better than the current operating system.

  • 84.
  • At 11:06 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Steve wrote:

Anyone buying new kit today should ask for XP to be installed, with the option of upgrading to Vista at a later date - ie. when it's matured, when there's more 3rd party driver support, and as others have mentioned, after the 1st service pack is released.

Working in the IT industry I can so absolutely no business sense in upgrading to Vista so early in its "development cycle".

XP works, and is understood well enough that when it won't do something work-arounds are well known. Vista is just too new to adopt and expect things to "just work".

oh, I was about to get a vista laptop - now I don't know what to do!

  • 86.
  • At 11:07 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Richard wrote:

Hmm...the usual comments at the usual level("buy a mac...you're so dumb to be using windows...nah nah na nah nah","it's all Bill Gates' fault my supergizmo doesn't work").

I've had Vista installed for about 2 months. Stability and upgrade wise its been the best windows upgrade I've had. This isn't however a complement, given the pain of previous upgrades. Things have however improved from "atrocious" to "could do better".

What does grate a bit is the usability "enhancements". A lot of common tasks seem to take a lot longer than with XP. Is this just experience? I guess I'll find out in another 6 months: before then nobody actually knows. If I did change to a mac it would be just as painful, and as my company develops software it really is not an option unless I want to address approximately 0% of my market...

What is frustrating is drivers and software compatibility. There is no excuse for incompatibility with product shipped over the last couple of years, but this is more the hardware and software vendors responsiblity than Microsoft's. Let's face it, the final release candidate came out in October, business has been using Vista since November 30th, a feature complete Vista beta was available to the general public in May 2006, and to Microsoft Development Network subscribers much before. Yet despite that my laptop, purchased just 18 months ago and meeting the minimum hardware spec for Vista easily is deemed "not supported" by my hardware manufacturer, though I could only find this out 2 months after the Vista release to business when I installed. But then why would a manufacturer want to support Vista on a laptop that has already been purchased when they can try to persuade the gullible to buy more kit when they don't really need to? Given the concentration of the pc market shouldn't journalists be looking into this problem? I'd really like to see a report comparing spec of PCs sold over the last couple of years with whether the manufacturer claims that the hardware supports Vista. Actually the only real problem I have is the manufacturer's preinstalled bloatware, and an an inbuilt modem which I can work around for less than than the cost of a new laptop. Frustrating, but not actually Microsoft at fault.

With respect to the most widely publicised software incompatibility, iTunes, is anybody really so naive to suggest that Apple has no competitive interest in suggesting Vista is flaky? Why did they wait until several days after to Vista's launch, at the time of maximum press exposure, when they should have been testing the final release candidate of Vista with their iTunes for 3 months? If iTunes still doesn't work on Vista what does this say about Apple's quality assurance and communications with their end users? This is the real question journalists should be asking.

Sorry for the essay...

  • 87.
  • At 11:07 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Nick Rennie wrote:

I love how all these Apple fanatics simply say "get a Mac".

They all simply forget Apples total cock-up of the first implementation of Mac OS X and as Beps noticeably pointed out, the transition from OS9 to OSX was at very least, excruciating!

Apples aren't without their flaws just as Windows or any OS is. Especially one as immature as Vista.

I'd just like to ask some of the more partial people to put away their smoking guns, and wait for a year or so to see the OS mature. Then come back and comment.

I'm all for OSX. It's beautiful, stable (not virus free as some say....) and works great.....for Mac software which is still not readily available.

I also love linux, as a developer or server platform. It is however, useless for a home user environment. Even in Ubuntu (the supposedly easiest distro, I had to recompile the kernel to install my Nvidia drivers; And people call this easy to use!?!!?!? Come back to Earth guys!!!)

And finally Windows. The best all rounder. Yes it has it's flaws but as a day to day OS, it works wonders. I've never had XP crash on me apart from when I removed that modem card accidentally while messing with the insides of my PC while turned on so in my eyes, that makes it stable for a user OS. And yes, it's easy to load those Nvidia drivers. And it's easy to pretty much do anything!
Perfect for the average Joe! I'm not saying it's best for mission critical stuff, but it's hard to deny it's a good OS.

But like I said. Each and every OS has it's advantages and disadvantages.

I just think these discussions are swamped by Apple / Linux Fundamentalists who have a total inability to be impartial and give a solid argument. (ie. "Simply.... Get a Mac....!", as Mash wrote, etc....).

  • 88.
  • At 11:09 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sebastien Rougerie wrote:

If you have happy Mac users around who keep raving about their operating system you must know about how great it is.

Therefore, why do you go out and insist on buying a Windows machine?

  • 89.
  • At 11:09 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • aa wrote:

"oh Oh Vista doesn't work with all my stuff. Therefore its useless, broken, not ready for release".

Did you not think to check compatibility with your existing peripherals *before* you ran out and bought a new laptop?

Dumbass. Get yourself a Macintosh, its made for prats like you.

And good luck with the huge variety and choice of compatible hardware/software for OS X. You'll need it.

  • 90.
  • At 11:09 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Martin Hughes wrote:

Fortunately I tried the beta first on my an Acer Travelmate 292Lmi laptop.

I gave up after discovering that Intel did not provide full Vista support for the wireless card.

My experiences indicate that if one must run Windows, use Windows XP Home/Professional or, if possible, stick to Windows 98SE.

Alternatively, if you can get it to suport your hardware, migrate to Linux which is free.

  • 91.
  • At 11:11 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andy Stephenson wrote:

Even if the problems lie with third-party vendors, surely it is in Microsoft's best interests to get these companies to ensure they have created new drivers and that these drivers work, which at present they clearly do not!

Also, it really is a massive embarrassment on the Ipaq front, even if the problematic driver is made by HP...let's hope Microsoft sort these problems out fast!

  • 92.
  • At 11:14 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

"Simply.... Get a Mac....!"

Yes, get a Mac, then instead of having to worry about when the manufacturer of your device will release the updated drivers for Vista, you'll be safe in the knowledge that you'll never have the inconvenience of being able to use that device on your Mac at all.

For some reason, a lot of media-types seem to have forgotten the market share of Apple computers excluding music players is pitiful, hence the marginal support for third party hardware. Still, if its twice the price of a comparitive PC laptop it must be good, eh?

Personally, Id rather just wait a couple of months for the new drivers.

As a technologist, these comments come as no surprise. Vista is still relatively speaking bleeding edge. Combined with the open system in which Windows Vista operates, its no surprise that certain devices are yet to work.

Take your Olympus software (I presume for a DV Video Camera of some sort). This software is developed by Olympus, and is probably not working due to incompatibilities between the drivers, and Vista's new security features (which "normal" people have been asking for for years). It will simply take some time for Olympus to release a patch for their software (if they do). You may be able to run it in compatibility mode (XP was able to do this for Windows 98 and DOS).

I agree your frustration with your HP iPaq, and its a shame its not working. But again I wouldn't be at all surprised if the actual drivers behind the device were developed by HP, and thus haven't been updated for Vista. Again, we're suffering from the open standards of the PC architecture.

Flip this around to Apple's way of doing things (which may, or may not, be better, I make no comment in that regard), and the only mobile device you'd truly be able to use on Mac inside of its closed architecture, and be garunteed for it to work, is one either developed, or licensed, by Apple. For instance the iPhone is a closed platform.

On the one hand, this give more of a guaruntee of stability, but also limits your choice of devices, software and other related tools. For many people this may be desirable, if they are willing to pay the premium, and don't step outside of the bounds of what Apple allows.

Its a simple choice about what you value most, in essence. Openness, and thus being able to use an extremely wide range of devices, software etc, which may have some incompatibility problems, or a closed system which is more likely to work fine, but may not have the tools, or be as affordable.

As an aside, I do wonder why you upgraded to a Vista laptop so soon after launch, and whether there was a killer feature you were moving for, as most people don't normally move for atleast a couple of months, giving time for these bugs with both the OS, and 3rd party software to be worked out.

  • 94.
  • At 11:15 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Kevin wrote:

Robert,

Stay way from writting tech atricles, you ignored every rule in the book of '101 tech' just to give yourself a story. I will not rehash other reads good comments that just point out your stupidity.
Mac or PC go with reliability, job/task functionality, cost sensitivity.
Oh and rarely use Preston's Picks blog to evaluate 'tech'!

  • 95.
  • At 11:16 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

Once you go Mac, you'll never go back...

  • 96.
  • At 11:16 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Giles Jones wrote:

>Any non technical person buying Vista >as an upgrade is asking for trouble. >Wait until SOME of the bugs have been >fixed, i.e when service pack 1 has >been released

That's rubbish, It's Windows not some new Linux distribution. It's supposed to be the OS for the masses.

The fact that it doesn't work with the odd bit of hardware is excusable, XP doesn't work with some old hardware. But the fact that an iPAQ PDA (running Windows Mobile) won't work is pathetic.

Once again consumers are beta-testing Windows for Microsoft.

  • 97.
  • At 11:16 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tom cafferkey wrote:

This is a rather silly article. As mentioned in other posts, MS are not responisble for the drivers of Third Party software. The whole point is that you check out the compatibility of your product with Olympus before upgrading. If they are slow to release a driver for THEIR product, surely its Olympus who are the baddies? Vista has been about for a while now in its Beta form, and frankly, shouldn't be a surprise to them. Macs may have positive features, but they are pricey for what you get and also not as flexible as your average PC. Watch me get ripped apart for that statement...

  • 98.
  • At 11:17 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Olaf Heinsohn wrote:

Did you really need a new computer?

  • 99.
  • At 11:17 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • James wrote:

I agree with the comments here, with MS software you do have to wait for Service Pack 1. But why should you?!

Get a Mac, it is more reliable, has a more regular upgrade path for the OS and has more intuitive software built in. They managed to change their chipset from PowerPC to Intel without skipping a beat, and launch 3-4 major updates to their OS in the time MS released one.

They are not perfect, they will still crash (occasionally) they will not always have relevant drivers. But on the whole they are more reliable and consistent than PCS, and the hardware looks soo much better!

  • 100.
  • At 11:17 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Peter Sowerby wrote:

Typical! Someone who buys the new OS on the day it comes out and expects everything to work instantly. everyone knows you give it a month or so for the 3rd party companies to catch up with the drivers for it!!

As a technologist, these comments come as no surprise. Vista is still relatively speaking bleeding edge. Combined with the open system in which Windows Vista operates, its no surprise that certain devices are yet to work.

Take your Olympus software (I presume for a DV Video Camera of some sort). This software is developed by Olympus, and is probably not working due to incompatibilities between the drivers, and Vista's new security features (which "normal" people have been asking for for years). It will simply take some time for Olympus to release a patch for their software (if they do). You may be able to run it in compatibility mode (XP was able to do this for Windows 98 and DOS).

I agree your frustration with your HP iPaq, and its a shame its not working. But again I wouldn't be at all surprised if the actual drivers behind the device were developed by HP, and thus haven't been updated for Vista. Again, we're suffering from the open standards of the PC architecture.

Flip this around to Apple's way of doing things (which may, or may not, be better, I make no comment in that regard), and the only mobile device you'd truly be able to use on Mac inside of its closed architecture, and be garunteed for it to work, is one either developed, or licensed, by Apple. For instance the iPhone is a closed platform.

On the one hand, this give more of a guaruntee of stability, but also limits your choice of devices, software and other related tools. For many people this may be desirable, if they are willing to pay the premium, and don't step outside of the bounds of what Apple allows.

Its a simple choice about what you value most, in essence. Openness, and thus being able to use an extremely wide range of devices, software etc, which may have some incompatibility problems, or a closed system which is more likely to work fine, but may not have the tools, or be as affordable.

As an aside, I do wonder why you upgraded to a Vista laptop so soon after launch, and whether there was a killer feature you were moving for, as most people don't normally move for atleast a couple of months, giving time for these bugs with both the OS, and 3rd party software to be worked out.

  • 102.
  • At 11:18 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Lee Fennell wrote:

I, too, am a Mac fan who went for XP about six months ago, in the form of a laptop. Yes, it does the word processing/email/web browsing/etc stuff that a Mac does, but - and here's the rub - it also does the blue screens/crashes/incompatability issues/bizarre behaviour that a Mac doesn't. I am writing this on my old iMac, not my new laptop. Nuff said...

  • 103.
  • At 11:18 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Robert Bartlett wrote:

Try buying a computer on line without Vista - I was aware of the service pack advice but no choice was offered that I could find

  • 104.
  • At 11:19 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Waqar wrote:

I did find it really annoying as well when I tried to get my pocket PC to communicate with Vista. There is a beta version of the new (repackaged Activesync application) syncing software for vista on the microsoft.com/mobile site. Its runs OK, graphics are a little different. What I find frustrating as a person who plays the odd game on my PC is that I have to double up the spec of my PC to get the same performance I was getting in XP. As Carmack of ID software recently said, there is no reason (except for when microsoft stop sending out service packs and patches that is) to stop using XP for years to come.

  • 105.
  • At 11:19 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Isaac wrote:

Well one problem with macs is that Apple controls all the hardware. Resulting in a more expensive machine. I prefer the PC model which is more open to development.

Vista is brand new, so I have built a new computer to run it, and also run windows XP. I dont consider Vista usable just yet until all relevant drivers are ready for it.

Certainly there are issues with the graphics drivers, and soundcard drivers for this computer if I use vista. Eventually there will be 3rd party drivers to make vista run smoothly and stable. Right now it wont though.

I would suggest that if you are upgrading to vista make sure your computer will dual boot into vista and XP so you can try vista and have a slow transition across to it.

  • 106.
  • At 11:19 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • George M. wrote:

Vista SP2 anyone?

My biggest gripe with MS is their pricing policy in Europe MS products cost twice as much as their american counterparts.

The same applies for Apple their computers albeit more flexible than the MS/Intel genre are usually less powerful more expensive and with far less applications.

I truly believe that in this market there is little alternative innovation and customer satisfaction everything is so-so.

  • 107.
  • At 11:20 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stu Baker wrote:

Yet another person unable to check whether or not his current hardware will work with new software. Stop complaining and do your research first.

  • 108.
  • At 11:21 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Peter Bently wrote:

Robert, hi – we were at college together, I think? The simple answer is buy a Mac. The very latest models have an intel processor – no, I'm not sure what that is either, but apparently it means that all windows software can now be run on a Mac. I'm no techno whizz but having worked on Macs in publishing for over a decade I can't imagine using anything else. Imagine – NO viruses in 14 years. Cheers.

  • 109.
  • At 11:22 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sally Wilkins wrote:

I had long since determined that I would not "upgrade" to Vista for a year or so, to give them time to get all the bugs out--and then my primary computer died over the weekend. A trip though several stores (I'm in the States)revealed that on February 3 the only pcs available were running Vista, and so I descended into Hell.
At this point (Feb 6) I am still unable to integrate the machine with my network except by taking down the firewall--not exactly a security feature I embrace warmly. The built-in troubleshooter insists on presuming that the network isn't working, despite the fact that all the other computers can see each other as well as the new machine. Most of the help is online, which would be terribly helpful if your problem prevented you accessing the internet. Some of the software that was bundled with the machine isn't "Vista" compatible, never mind other programs I might need. And the backwards compatibility apparently only extends to XP - good luck to those of us running Win2000/NT servers.
I suppose if you consider your lost time the price of the MAC starts to look reasonable?

  • 110.
  • At 11:22 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • alex wrote:

Dear Robert,

Describing mac users as pretentious seems a little harsh. As a mac user i would admit to being smug, because MacOS is generally a really easy and enjoyable experience. I know PC users often view our OS as too simplistic, however the writers of the software ensure that Macs usually work with whatever you plug into them. We used to pay more for this privilege, however Macs cost around the same as PCs these days.
Take you PC back and get a mac!

  • 111.
  • At 11:22 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David wrote:

Blogger, it is your fault for not checking that all your hardware was compatiable before buying. Its not vistas fault if manufacturers havent released vista drivers yet. But hey, jump on the bandwagon, why let that get in the way of a good headline?

And to the people who are crying 'get a mac/linux', he wants to reduce compatability issues, not increase them.

I suggest you change your headline to 'Check hardware compatability before upgrading to Vista'.

  • 112.
  • At 11:22 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • James wrote:

I agree with the comments here, with MS software you do have to wait for Service Pack 1. But why should you?!

Get a Mac, it is more reliable, has a more regular upgrade path for the OS and has more intuitive software built in. They managed to change their chipset from PowerPC to Intel without skipping a beat, and launch 3-4 major updates to their OS in the time MS released one.

They are not perfect, they will still crash (occasionally) they will not always have relevant drivers. But on the whole they are more reliable and consistent than PCS, and the hardware looks soo much better!

  • 113.
  • At 11:22 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paul Freeman-Powell wrote:

Stop talking rubbish. You won't need to buy any new hardware, just get the updated software/drivers for your current hardware.

Yes, that's annoying and bad if they're not been released yet. Blame olympus! (I'm assuming you've visited the web site to try to obtain Vista drivers?) But it is an entirely new operating system so it's expecting a lot for the XP drivers to work with Vista.

I've been using the final release of Vista every day since the start of December. And whilst it's certainly not perfect, it's certainly much better than XP. And as semi-Mac user too... I'd say that Vista and OS X each have good and bad points.

Swings and roundabouts.

  • 114.
  • At 11:22 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tim wrote:

Vista doesn't use ActiveSync (which is why you cannot sync your IPAQ).

Assuming you have a 32 bit version of Vista then you need to download the Microsoft Windows Mobile Device Center Driver for Windows Vista (x86) which can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=83D513EA-9DF9-4920-AF33-3A0E2E4E7BEB&displaylang=en

With all due respect Robert, if I can do the research why can't you!!!!

  • 115.
  • At 11:23 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Lee Fennell wrote:

I, too, am a Mac fan who went for XP about six months ago, in the form of a laptop. Yes, it does the word processing/email/web browsing/etc stuff that a Mac does, but - and here's the rub - it also does the blue screens/crashes/incompatability issues/bizarre behaviour that a Mac doesn't. I am writing this on my old iMac, not my new laptop. Nuff said...

  • 116.
  • At 11:23 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Roger Sermons wrote:

You are not alone with incompatability. Microsoft have alerady admitted to me that although they make Outlook and Outlook Express their files are fully transportabel between them.

Get a Mac, get a Mac, get a Mac (and not just because I'm a shareholder). I've had them for 7 years and never had a problem. There's a reason why Mac users are so evangelical...

  • 118.
  • At 11:24 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paul Hepple wrote:

Why didn't you check to see if your hardware would work before you upgraded?

Get a Mac, get a Mac, get a Mac (and not just because I'm a shareholder). I've had them for 7 years and never had a problem. There's a reason why Mac users are so evangelical...

  • 120.
  • At 11:24 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • AMeow wrote:

It's not surprising this sort of thing is happening all over the world on the release of the latest whizz-bang windows.

Microsoft have whipped up a frenzy of marketing and lots of people are excitedly jumping on the bandwagon without asking the obvious question "Do I really need to upgrade?"

The answer depends on who you are, if you are microsoft, the answer (after many long delays and presumably lost potential profit) is yes, buy it immediately!!!

The actual sensible answer is no, wait at least 6 months! And if you're buying Vista with new hardware, then make sure to get XP with a vista upgrade coupon.

The question that noone seems to be asking is didn't microsoft go through an extensive beta testing phase before release?

  • 121.
  • At 11:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Peter wrote:

I'm a self-confessed dinosaur operating a stand-alone 11 yr. old Mac. clone running OS7.6 using Photoshop, Painter and ClarisWorks. It's never crashed, thrown a fit or lost any info. in all the time I've had it.
I also use a PC running Windows XP, which our son bought us for a birthday present. My last PC ran Windows '98, which I found better for file management.If (not when) the Mac. goes belly-up I'll get an iMac.

  • 122.
  • At 11:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Martin wrote:

It serves you right you clown. Maybe in future you will think before rushing out to buy the latest kit just because its available. Did you use any of the compatibility tools available to check your existing system software?

Did you specifically check that your hardware is compatible with Vista?

Everyone knows not to immediately buy the latest version of windows until a service pack is released.

I will ignore your comparative statement with google as you've obviously read that somewhere and misunderstood it.

Yes, go and use a MAC. Its limited functionality and idiot proof "fuzzy warm feeling" interface will suit you perfectly. Leave the advanced computing to the people who know what they are doing.

Chin up.

  • 123.
  • At 11:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Meg wrote:

Oh how I look forward to reading the personal reply from Bill!

I hope he remembers to include the apology for creating holey, bug-filled software that causes so much stress at home and at work. He must be the greatest contributer to stress related illnesses in the world.

  • 124.
  • At 11:25 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Robert Bartlett wrote:

Try buying a computer on line without Vista - I was aware of the service pack advice but no choice was offered that I could find

Anyone thinking of paying out for Vista should make themselves aware of the DRM issues. Google "Peter Gutmann", a computer scientist who's study of Vista is creating a furore. Vista wrests the last vestiges of control over the PC from the end user and puts it into the hands of the Hollywood 'Premium Content' providers. Vista checks to see if you are a thief 30 times every second. Vista will deliberately degrade your audio and video output unless you are using "approved" drivers, and Vista will shut down your PCs graphics subsystem if it detects voltage variations which could mean you are attempting to view 'premium content' illegally. YOU pay for the CPU overhead. YOU pay for the increased hardware requirements. Even though Vista DRM has already been cracked! Go Mac, or Ubuntu Linux.

  • 126.
  • At 11:26 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Daniel wrote:

Why didn't you check for compatibility issues BEFORE you upgraded? Microsoft have provided extensive resources with which to do so. What you have done is, basically, buy an expensive HD-DVD player to attempt to play your MiniDiscs on. Is that now somehow the fault of the people who manufactured the player?

  • 127.
  • At 11:26 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stu Baker wrote:

Dear Robert Preston

Did you do any research to be sure that your new software would run your old hardware? If you didnt you have only yourself to blame!

  • 128.
  • At 11:27 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • paul bailey wrote:

i ran the vista compatbility check on my pc, hardware wise only the grafix card failed - no surprise i use the pc for work not play. But a large number of software applications failed - including MS provided ones, gasp!. I will skip Vista until the PC needs replacing.

  • 129.
  • At 11:28 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Hugo Rudd wrote:

Why on earth is someone blaming Microsoft for the failure of hardware manufacturers to release drivers? they've had the framework for months now. If anyone is offering you bad customer service experience, it's HP and Olympus.

I simply love watching the M$ bashing. ure, grab yourself a Mac laptop and pay the Apple Tax every time a decimal shift comes in their software system version.

Eny Fule Kno that drivers don't start a ppearing properly until about a month after launch of any new development in OS world; although I notice that Olympus is one of the worst offenders.

  • 130.
  • At 11:29 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew Martin wrote:

It's not surprising this sort of thing is happening all over the world on the release of the latest whizz-bang windows.

Microsoft have whipped up a frenzy of marketing and lots of people are excitedly jumping on the bandwagon without asking the obvious question "Do I really need to upgrade?"

The answer depends on who you are, if you are microsoft, the answer (after many long delays and presumably lost potential profit) is yes, buy it immediately!!!

The actual sensible answer is no, wait at least 6 months! And if you're buying Vista with new hardware, then make sure to get XP with a vista upgrade coupon.

The question that noone seems to be asking is didn't microsoft go through an extensive beta testing phase before release?

  • 131.
  • At 11:30 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Anthony Smith wrote:

Here we go again. Someone else jumping on the "take a punch at Microsoft" bandwagon. I get bored of reading things like this and seeing the inevitable comparisons with Apple.

Such a blinkered attitude and selective memory is not appropriate for someone from a supposedly unbiased reporting organisation. It is however, fully expected of the Apple "fanboy" fraternity.

Don't get me wrong, I have both types of machine but I can see the positives and negatives of both OSs.

When OSX first came along, it was months before Adobe and Quark had versions of Photoshop and Express that worked on Apple's new OS - and let's be honest here - they are the biggest pieces of software for the platform.

Surely the other accusations of Microsoft "copying" Apple and making their OS look prettier is rubbish too. Let's think of the range of "base" hardware that each OS has to support - who's is widest? MS have a much wider range of motherboards, video cards etc etc that they have to support than Apple and they don't even have the strict controls over the hardware that Apple does too. So, rather than copying Apple, I think the better looking Vista is a natural evolution for the Windows OS. And how many people will be outraged that their five year old PCs won't run Vista and then complain that it's Microsoft's fault? Give me strength...

As for your iPaq, what would your Apple option be there? A Newton?

Yes, it's trendy to take a punch at Microsoft but if you're going to do it, at least have a well though out, reasonable argument for it - not just the ranting of an impatient,
"look-I've-got-a-new-Vista-laptop" muppet ;-)

I have got to say I didn't really have any problems when I upgraded OSX from Panther to Leopard (what Macs run on instead of windows.) That was hardly such a big step I suppose.

Still it's sad to hear that a company with so many years of experience can still fail to produce a satisfactory product for market release. If I had that many problems with my television or stereo I wouldn't be waiting around for a 'service pack', I'd be after a refund so I could buy one from an alternative brand.

I think it's a shame that PC users are forced to be so patient with what is rather unprofessional behaviour; you pay good money on these products what more should you have to do? It ought to just work out of the box.

Were the programmers expecting people to just go out and spend yet more money to accomodate Vista. Spending lots of money for the upgrade; sounds like a mac user, except you don't get the mac. How sad!

  • 133.
  • At 11:35 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • James Zimmerman wrote:

What a mistake! I spent all day Saturday installing Windows Vista Home Basic UPGRADE on a two-year old notebook (which clearly meets the minimum requirement indicated by Microsoft)... and it was a disaster. A listing of a dozen or so software/hardware items that were not compatible... and it ran extremely slow... you could actually watch IE7 draw it's frames. We won't even talk about firewall and antivirus issues! I reformatted the drive and reinstalled XP2 (and dozens of applications via an external backup drive). Everything runs well now (actually a bit better than before, with a handful of cobwebs removed). A Mac is the next machine... just waiting for their new OS and a few thousand testers, first! On the Christmas list!

Why do we need another upgrade anyway?

I now have XP but only because it came on the new machine a couple of years ago - but have no idea what benefit it conferred over its predecessor. I still run Office 2000 on it, as I did on the previous Op system and it works fine for my purposes (word, excel and outlook).

I'm in no hurry to buy again - in fact I am unlikely to get a new machine before 2009 - so Bill Gates will have to wait a while for anymore of my cash.

  • 135.
  • At 11:37 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • jd wrote:

Try Linux (Ubuntu is good). It's free, secure and uses fewer resources than Vista needs.

  • 136.
  • At 11:37 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike Mitchell wrote:

I stopped upgrading Windows at Windows 98 Second Edition, which I am currently running. The Microsoft Money Machine can take a running jump! My 98 SE setup works just fine with everything I want to do.

  • 137.
  • At 11:38 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sam wrote:

macs are great if your not a power user and you can run them on dual boot with XP anyway. But yeah vista has its problems as you would expect. The only benefit i can see with it is that it has directx10 which will be good for gaming. But other than that why did you bother?

Why not just run XP?

When i build my next pc in the next few month i will buy visata but only for running games, everything else i will do on the other boot partition which will be running opensuse 64bit which is far better and its what vista was actually modelled on largly.

  • 138.
  • At 11:38 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike Mitchell wrote:

I stopped upgrading Windows at Windows 98 Second Edition, which I am currently running. The Microsoft Money Machine can take a running jump! My 98 SE setup works just fine with everything I want to do.

  • 139.
  • At 11:48 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Evans wrote:

Yet another feeble and narrow minded attempt to boost Mac. Lest we forget, it's only recently that Mac has been compatible with anything!

  • 140.
  • At 11:50 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Giles Hassan wrote:

To be honest, this article shows a lack of understanding and wholly unrealistic / simplistic expectations. There are a couple of important points that need to be raised.

Firstly, Vista is an operating system. As an operating system, it is indeed complete and ready for commercial release. Having tested since Beta 2 and now owning a copy which I use as my primary OS on my main machine, I have found the system to be entirely stable and functions as advertised. By its nature, an OS is a base for other applications, but to expect Microsoft to ensure compatibility with every single third-party application of the thousands available is rediculous. As it stands, it is down to the user to ensure compatibility and contact the software publisher if the third-party application fails to work correctly on Vista.

Secondly, the IPAQ does indeed work with Vista, as should almost all Windows-mobile powered devices. All it takes is a little research to find that a newer version of Active Sync, known as Windows Mobile Device Center is required. It's all easy to find and claiming that something doesn't work by just plugging it in is simply ignorant.

Thinking that a complete OS overhaul on a Mac would be any easier shows another lack of insight. For a start, the number of third-party applications available for Mac systems is significantly fewer than for Windows systems.

Good luck with your Windows Vista system, I'm sure that it will serve you well should you actually engage a little common sense and make your expecatations of Microsoft a little more realistic!

  • 141.
  • At 11:50 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Gabriel Asseily wrote:

Frustrating indeed I guess. That said I have installed the RC2 on a test machine and had little to no problems.

As for the Olympus recorder it is a pain to get drivers for it at any rate.

In terms of the Ipaq, that I admit is a little strange however I would like to remind all "Macs are the best" users that they do not sync with pocket PC so switching over does not help. (Blackberry has only recently got a third party client).

I would also like to remind people that Microsoft actually are the number 1 company in releasing patches and fixes.

This does not condone a rushed commercial release but it is food for thought.

  • 142.
  • At 11:51 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mysturji wrote:

The ONLY reason anyone would ever possibly want a windows machine is to play games on.
The range of games available on Apple and *NIX machines is pitiful, but they will do everything else.
The reason I haven't switched to Mac (yet) is that I do enjoy gaming, and the dedicated games consoles never really appealed, as they come out so frequently, I'd have to upgrade every year.
On the other hand, the Wii looks interesting...

  • 143.
  • At 11:51 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark Murphy wrote:

I get the feeling you're not very familar with computers, Mr Preston.

When we at our company upgraded from Mac OS9 to OSX we found dozens of bits of hardware which no longer worked (and some have never been given new drivers). This problem will affect you whether you own a PC or a Mac if you buy the new OS in the first weekend that it is available. Given the thousands of pieces of third-party software that have to work with it, did you really expect every single one to do so perfectly in the first week?

You don't have to buy a new IPAQ or whatever silly knee-jerk reaction you have the urge for; just wait patiently.

  • 144.
  • At 11:54 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Alex wrote:

Surely the most intelligent thing to do would have been to check compatibility with your hardware beofre upgrading? I'm waiting on one 3rd party to release a driver for my soundcard before I upgrade. That's not Microsoft's fault, it's the lazy/greedy vendor. Lazy as they've had months to write the drivers, and greedy as they probably do it so I go out and buy the newest soundcard.

Surely therefore the most un-intelligent thing to do would be to jump on the Gates-basher bandwagon and suck up to Apple.

  • 145.
  • At 11:55 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike wrote:

Use virtual pc (which is free) and install xp.

  • 146.
  • At 11:55 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nuciphaal wrote:

Oh dear, many things wrong here. Firstly, perhaps it would have been prudent of you to check if your hardware would be compatible. To be honest, I think it's user error. My iPaq worked without issue under Vista, and quite correctly, it's been pointed out the it's Olympus who are responsible for creating drivers for the OS. I really think you should refrain from making comments such as "And, just so you know, I’ve never once had a comparably horrible experience with the Google boys.", when clearly Google develop and provide web services, content and other products, but NOT operating systems. This statement pretty much invalidates most of your criticisms, as MS clearly know that you don't know what you're talking about. You may as well have said 'Well I've never set fire to my kitchen while driving my car'. Vista's new UI features can be disabled with one click, so why not disable them? And if you're not happy, switch to Mac. Sadly, that's not always an option as OSX simply doesn't have the range of applications that Windows does. OS choice is about your requirements. Research them before whingeing.

  • 147.
  • At 11:55 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stani wrote:

The true upgrade to Windows XP is not Vista, but the free Ubuntu, a linux version which directly aims to compete with Windows. It is used by major companies, such as Google. I did the switch myself and was pleasantly surprised on how much better it felt. I tried a Mac for a while, but I definitely prefer Ubuntu. You can download it for free at http://www.ubuntu.com

  • 148.
  • At 11:56 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jennie Rigg wrote:

Mate, you need Linux. Yes, you will have the same issues that BOTH Mac and Microsoft users have with upgrades, but with two important distinctions: it's free, and you have the best tech support in the world (a team of millions of dedicated geeks that Microsoft would kill to get into the brains of).

I can't understand why ANYONE pays for things which are available free and open-source.

Get yourself a nice, stable, easy user interface like Ubuntu and you'll never look back.

  • 149.
  • At 11:57 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Georges Vert wrote:

You really should have bought a Mac with OSX. Having said that, calling Mac people "pretentious" ... well, you deserve everything you get. Sorry. :)

  • 150.
  • At 11:57 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Chris wrote:

As a couple of posters have pointed out, it's the third-party manufacturers at fault here. Your issues are with their drivers not with Windows. They have had access to beta and pre-release versions of Vista for long enough now to have sorted this out.

  • 151.
  • At 11:58 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

Save yourself some trouble and switch to Mac. The new Macs have the ability to run Windows as well so you can use the lovely Mac OS or switch to Windows XP when you need that one app that hasn't been updated in half a decade to work. This is coming from a Microsoft Certified Professional btw.

  • 152.
  • At 11:58 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Matt wrote:

Microsoft is not the great Satan. Without MS (or a similar software giant) home computers would be about as compatible with each other as a fridge and a washing machine. Can you imagine having to replace ALL your software and ALL your hardware when you upgrade your pc?

Microsoft has many weaknesses, but the important thing for home (and in many cases, business) users is that the OS is almost invisible - Jo Smith, sitting at home, browsing the web doesn't realise that Windows is running. When his/her kids are playing the latest game, they don't care about the operating system, they just get on and play.

I won't be upgrading to Vista, because my PC won't cope with it. Far too many people upgrade their computers and software because they have been convinced by the marketing hype. I need a PC to write a few letters, and browse the internet - I don't need Vista, or Mac OSx - in fact Windows 98 would still be fine for me (except that I am not averse to playing the occaisional game or two).

Stop blaming Microsoft and look at your own reasons for buying stuff you don't need!!!!!

Yeah, get a Mac. They're just better. Cooler. More awesome. Trust me, if you like black turtle-necks and Chai Macciatos, you'll love a Mac. You can't play games on it and you'll pay over the odds, but the windows slide around and stuff! How cool is that.

I feel real pity for PC users. Their tools are so uncool, so practical. You can use them to do anything. How common is that? Plus, Microsoft are an evil monopoly that control the entire PC market in software, guarding commerical secrets and suing anyone in their way. I like to call them Micro$oft! See what I did there, with the dollar sign? Of course, Apple Inc displays absolutely none of these monopolistic characteristics.

Did I mention that Macs are so secure that there has never been a known crash of the software and I have been running mine continuously since 1986? There are no viruses either. This is because even virus developers recognise that Mac users are too cool to mess with. If they attacked a Mac, they'd have the coolest bunch of graphic designers and MBA students to deal with! Aha!

Yeah, and Macs have a power cord that disconnects when you trip over it while doing Tai Chi.

  • 154.
  • At 11:59 AM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • jude wrote:

windows, microsoft!
i love windows!
dont buy a mac, just give bill gates time to work his magic.
macs are fine, for a little bit, but from personal experience, never ever rely on them!
i've just ditched my mac, and im happily going back to microsoft!

My Vista install went flawlessly, and I dare say I have a lot more peripherals than you, INCLUDING a PDA. Perhaps the experience of ONE user doesn't indicate the complete failure of a product across the board? Just maybe?

  • 156.
  • At 12:01 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Gavin Greig wrote:

Sounds like you upgraded without due diligence. I'm sorry to sound unsympathetic, but I'm afraid it's your responsibility (or your technical support's) to check the availability of device drivers.

Microsoft do supply a lot of device drivers with the operating system, because they want it to work with a good range of devices "straight out of the box" but it is just not possible for them to supply everything you might possibly want, and in fact it's not their responsibility to do so - it's the responsibility of the device manufacturers to provide software that cooperates with the operating system. Sadly, many device manufacturers have a poor record on this front, and Microsoft takes the flak because many naïve users don't know any better. Note that Dorian Moore is honest enough to admit you could have had the same experience with a Mac.

If you haven't already done so, visit the Olympus and HP web sites for information on up to date software, and pressure them if they're not providing it. Don't accept them passing the blame on to Microsoft. Olympus can't reasonably do so. HP might have more of a case, but they are still the right people to pressure; if they are looking bad because of something Microsoft has done, they are more likely to be able to apply effective pressure to get it addressed.

I think there's a reasonable chance you may owe Microsoft an apology.

  • 157.
  • At 12:02 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Simon wrote:

When will you people realise that a lot of the issues with MS is not the OS itself, but the fact it has to allow for 3rd party hardware and addons, how many people can change the motherboard, CD/DVD drive or graphics card on a Mac? i think the answer is none. If Microsoft made their own hardware like Apple, someone would complain it's anti competitive. If hardware manufacturers wrote their drivers properly in the first place, and lets face it, Vista hasn't only just arrived, then the OS would be stable and secure. Come on people, you can't have an OS that has to be open (according to the antitrust laws) and secure. Which also begs the question, is Mac is so good, why did they switch to intel processors if the ones they had did the job perfectly well. Yes Microsoft has it's faults, but so does Apple, Linux and all the others, just that nobody cares about the non MS software.

theres a lot of comments about waiting for vista sp2 to come out first , well maybe ok but microsoft have plans to sell this as a version rather than offer it as a free upgrade as they have done in the past

the apple may note be the best solution and although it may work you also may find it does not have the applications you want

reverting back to xp may be a better option for most , but i understand that will involve buying a new copy of xp as the old one is de-validated with the upgrade to vista so will not reactivate

linux can provide a good solution as it should run on your existing hardware rather than having to buy a new mac
its available for free but like changing to the mac , many windows users are going to be lost on how to operate it and it can take a good 12 months to become used to it

i think it sad that many windows users are going to find to there cost that vista is not the way they want to go

  • 159.
  • At 12:04 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Critalsh Fralash wrote:

Dear Preston:
Not ready to take the MAC plunge? Why don't you ask (nicely) a "pretentious Mac-loving type" -assuming you know one- to create a user name on their machine for you (takes about 2 minutes [*]) so that you can see for yourself 1) how easy that is 2) if the two pieces of kit you mention work "out of the box" 3) what the PC vs. MAC fuss is all about.

Then you can do the maths and see if you'd like to or if it makes financial sense to switch... Your lost week-end is already, of course, a sunk cost but as a MAC can also run Windows (with a software emulator ) your "investment" in Vista need not be... ...and then you can get your Windows fix should you still need it. (See http://www.parallels.com/ or http://www.codeweavers.com/%29

[*] Your own user name (account) will allow you to experiment on your friend's machine without damaging her/his data; it can be deleted afterwards easily...

  • 160.
  • At 12:04 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nuciphaal wrote:

Oh dear, many things wrong here. Firstly, perhaps it would have been prudent of you to check if your hardware would be compatible. To be honest, I think it's user error. My iPaq worked without issue under Vista, and quite correctly, it's been pointed out the it's Olympus who are responsible for creating drivers for the OS. I really think you should refrain from making comments such as "And, just so you know, I’ve never once had a comparably horrible experience with the Google boys.", when clearly Google develop and provide web services, content and other products, but NOT operating systems. This statement pretty much invalidates most of your criticisms, as MS clearly know that you don't know what you're talking about. You may as well have said 'Well I've never set fire to my kitchen while driving my car'. Vista's new UI features can be disabled with one click, so why not disable them? And if you're not happy, switch to Mac. Sadly, that's not always an option as OSX simply doesn't have the range of applications that Windows does. OS choice is about your requirements. Research them before whingeing.

  • 161.
  • At 12:04 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Liam wrote:

An open letter to Robert Preston...

I presume you spent a reasonable sum of money on this laptop? What possessed you not to research your purchase before running out a buying the latest technology? I am wondering who managed to convince you that Vista is what you actually needed? I wouldn't buy a 4x4 vehicle without a) finding out if I could reach the accelerator, and b) pondering whether I actually needed such a vehicle in the first place.

If you are considering the purchase of a new platform for your PC (or Mac) you need to check that all the hardware and software you currently find so essential will actually run on it, and whether drivers are available on the vendor's web site. Previous incarnations of Windows and Mac OSX, when first released, caused compatibility issues, which are all well documented.

If you don't consider these basic considerations, you will run into exactly the same issues when purchasing a Mac, a mobile phone, or your next 4x4 vehicle.

  • 162.
  • At 12:05 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Greenwood wrote:

Maybe you should have spent a few minutes on the web and confirmed that that 'two of the vital tools of your trade' were indeed compatible before your purchase, it's not unheard of for there to be driver issues on a new version of windows.

  • 163.
  • At 12:07 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

If you visit the HP website you can download Vista drivers for most of their products - I trust you tried that rather than crying straight away that your toy doesn't work?

  • 164.
  • At 12:07 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Wolfie wrote:

It's all very well to say that it's the responsibility of the 3rd party (HP, Olympus) to produce drivers that work with Vista and that's possibly true. But does Microsoft not have a responsibilty to ensure that add-ons that work with XP continue to work with the new OS?

I would add my voice to the advice to not upgrade (at least, not if you need to use your computer for whatever occupation keeps the bills paid) until at least SP1. By then, 3rd party drivers should also be available.

Its been said that these other companies have had long enough to come up with drivers. However, until the OS is actually released, there is always the possibility that Microsoft will make changes that make their new drivers unworkable. Also, it seems historically to have been the case that 3rd party companies cannot get enough access to the new Microsoft OS until its been released on an unsuspecting public.

Having seen Vista this past weekend, the bits of it that seem to be new seem to be direct rip-offs of Mac OS X. Having used a MAc for the first time recently, I would suggest that a Mac is the way to go - after all, if you're having trouble getting Vista to work anyway, what difference will it make if you have some teething problems with OS X? The major upside will be that once those teething problems are sorted, you won't be bombarded by new ones like you're bound to be when they "fix" stuff in Vista.

  • 165.
  • At 12:07 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Anthony Smith wrote:

Here we go again. Someone else jumping on the "take a punch at Microsoft" bandwagon. I get bored of reading things like this and seeing the inevitable comparisons with Apple.

Such a blinkered attitude and selective memory is not appropriate for someone from a supposedly unbiased reporting organisation. It is however, fully expected of the Apple "fanboy" fraternity.

Don't get me wrong, I have both types of machine but I can see the positives and negatives of both OSs.

When OSX first came along, it was months before Adobe and Quark had versions of Photoshop and Express that worked on Apple's new OS - and let's be honest here - they are the biggest pieces of software for the platform.

Surely the other accusations of Microsoft "copying" Apple and making their OS look prettier is rubbish too. Let's think of the range of "base" hardware that each OS has to support - who's is widest? MS have a much wider range of motherboards, video cards etc etc that they have to support than Apple and they don't even have the strict controls over the hardware that Apple does too. So, rather than copying Apple, I think the better looking Vista is a natural evolution for the Windows OS. And how many people will be outraged that their five year old PCs won't run Vista and then complain that it's Microsoft's fault? Give me strength...

As for your iPaq, what would your Apple option be there? A Newton?

Yes, it's trendy to take a punch at Microsoft but if you're going to do it, at least have a well though out, reasonable argument for it - not just the ranting of an impatient,
"look-I've-got-a-new-Vista-laptop" muppet ;-)

  • 166.
  • At 12:08 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stuart Bell wrote:

When the boss of Windows development can send an email to Bill Gates telling him that were he not a Microsoft employee, he'd buy a Mac, I simply cannot comprehend why anyone is suprised that Vista, just like every previous version of Windows, fails to deliver what users have a right to expect. Just google for Allchin, Gates and email.

  • 167.
  • At 12:08 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • jude wrote:

windows, microsoft!
i love windows!
dont buy a mac, just give bill gates time to work his magic.
macs are fine, for a little bit, but from personal experience, never ever rely on them!
i've just ditched my mac, and im happily going back to microsoft!

  • 168.
  • At 12:09 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nuciphaal wrote:

Oh dear, many things wrong here. Firstly, perhaps it would have been prudent of you to check if your hardware would be compatible. To be honest, I think it's user error. My iPaq worked without issue under Vista, and quite correctly, it's been pointed out the it's Olympus who are responsible for creating drivers for the OS. I really think you should refrain from making comments such as "And, just so you know, I’ve never once had a comparably horrible experience with the Google boys.", when clearly Google develop and provide web services, content and other products, but NOT operating systems. This statement pretty much invalidates most of your criticisms, as MS clearly know that you don't know what you're talking about. You may as well have said 'Well I've never set fire to my kitchen while driving my car'. Vista's new UI features can be disabled with one click, so why not disable them? And if you're not happy, switch to Mac. Sadly, that's not always an option as OSX simply doesn't have the range of applications that Windows does. OS choice is about your requirements. Research them before whingeing.

  • 169.
  • At 12:10 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • The Elitist wrote:

It's funny. It took them years to get Windows XP to the stage where it could accurately be labelled as a 'final release'.

No sooner had that happened, and they bring out Vista.

I suggest that for everyone running an up to date WinXP system, do not upgrade to Vista until the guinea pigs out there (sorry Robert) have tried and tested it.

Oh, and the 'incompatability' issues with some bits of hardware are not a mistake. Call me cynical.

I think next upgrade, will be to either Linux or Mac.

  • 170.
  • At 12:11 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Drags wrote:

It's quite funny listening to all the Mac owners getting so excited over the release of the latest O/S from Microsoft.

Of course, we all know how it will go. Mac owners will gloat, without good cause I might add, Vista will find it's way onto over 90% of PC's, just like it's predecessors have done and everybody will forget what a Mac is again until the next big Microsoft release where the process will repeat itself.

Strange how PC owners are quite content to use their machines without trying to sell them to every Mac user they know and yet Mac owners seem completely incapable of doing the same.

  • 171.
  • At 12:11 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew wrote:

I am pretty surprised by your comments. I installed a clean version of Vista on a Dell laptop of about 18 months in age. I was expecting a host of issues, and lack of functionality in the Aero graphics. But i have to say I have been totally blown away by the ease of installation. NOT ONE BUG OR PROBLEM, it was a total joy to install. Dell had updated all the drivers I required.

Blaming Microsoft for your drivers not working is a strange way to do it. Driver compatibility has ALWAYS been an issue, its not MS's fault that new drivers haven't been released. Manufacturers such as Dell have had access to Vista for months. I would suggest that HP have no motivation to update drivers... however persuading customers to buy new hardware contains plenty of motivation.

I'll chime in here and be one of the few sticking up for Windows Vista. I think overall it is excellent. Not only is it much faster, its user friendly for those stepping up from Windows XP and much easier to search with, browse the internet, play music and organise photos with.

I'm also a mac user mostly for my photography and while when I first got the Mac I was praising it no end, I still like it, but for day to day use and doing more things like Gaming, browsing, creating DVD's, movies and for better overall sound I use my Windows PC far more. Yeah the Mac UI looks fantastic and generally it never crashes, but thats not all that great when there is little for most people to use it for.

  • 173.
  • At 12:12 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Greenwood wrote:

Maybe you should have spent a few minutes on the web and confirmed that that 'two of the vital tools of your trade' were indeed compatible before your purchase, it's not unheard of for there to be driver issues on a new version of windows.

  • 174.
  • At 12:12 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Comandante Monkey wrote:

There are far more important issues affecting Windows Vista than relatively trivial short-term issues with drivers (which will be fixed).

Just search the internet for the problems involving Vista and DRM (Digital Rights Management), especially regarding HD (High Definition). There are people who have bought High-Def monitors who cannot watch their High-Def movies. In fact, it was just such a frustration that motivated muslix64's crack.

Stick with XP.

Vista has no driver support by design, as with Win98, hardware vendors look upon this new OS as an opportunity to force you to buy the latest product. And this IS Microsoft's fault, as they should have INSISTED on 3rd party legacy driver's being re-written for any hardware made in the last 3 years.

My father's got Vista Home Premimum on his Dell Inspirion 9100 (bought last Autumn) and Vista goes to the Blue Screen of Death on shutdown every time. Plus it's slow and unstable, doesn't like McAfee or MS Money??

In modern parlance, Vista sucks!

For how long will Microsoft keep on trying to integrate everything.

I agree with Jorn. "And if you play games, surely it's better to get a console. If you like music, buy a decent stereo."

I total integration the goal. My guess it is going to be very difficult and I am not sure the average user will be patient with all the problems arising.

Klas from MyWebDesktop.net

  • 177.
  • At 12:15 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

Save yourself some trouble and switch to Mac. The new Macs have the ability to run Windows as well so you can use the lovely Mac OS or switch to Windows XP when you need that one app that hasn't been updated in half a decade to work. This is coming from a Microsoft Certified Professional btw.

  • 178.
  • At 12:16 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Doug wrote:

Drivers. Hardware vendors.

D - R - I - V - E - R - S
V - E - N - D - O - R - S

Ok? Get it? The "Vendors" produce the "Drivers" for THEIR "Hardware".

Before you assume that software "x" will support all hardware known to man, check that DRIVERS are available. Especially if the hardware are "vital tools of your trade".

All the bleating about "oh get a Mac" and "aren't Microsoft rubbish" are a waste of valuable bandwidth.

Drivers. Hardware vendors. Repeat ...

Sounds like you upgraded without due diligence. I'm sorry to sound unsympathetic, but I'm afraid it's your responsibility (or your technical support's) to check the availability of device drivers.

Microsoft do supply a lot of device drivers with the operating system, because they want it to work with a good range of devices "straight out of the box" but it is just not possible for them to supply everything you might possibly want, and in fact it's not their responsibility to do so - it's the responsibility of the device manufacturers to provide software that cooperates with the operating system. Sadly, many device manufacturers have a poor record on this front, and Microsoft takes the flak because many naïve users don't know any better. Note that Dorian Moore is honest enough to admit you could have had the same experience with a Mac.

If you haven't already done so, visit the Olympus and HP web sites for information on up to date software, and pressure them if they're not providing it. Don't accept them passing the blame on to Microsoft. Olympus can't reasonably do so. HP might have more of a case, but they are still the right people to pressure; if they are looking bad because of something Microsoft has done, they are more likely to be able to apply effective pressure to get it addressed.

I think there's a reasonable chance you may owe Microsoft an apology.

  • 180.
  • At 12:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andy wrote:

Switched to Mac OS X 18 months ago, after 15 years with Windows... and haven't looked back.
I agree that Mac users aren't pretentious we just want others to benefit from the great discovery we've made, especially those of us who've recently switched.

  • 181.
  • At 12:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Carl Melia wrote:

I've done what alot of people seem to be doing. Upon reading a 'Have Your Say' thread about Visa I ended up googling Ubuntu. I dual boot with XP at the moment but am in the process of making the full transition to Linux. I dont believe in lining Bill's pockets with my hard earned cash, come to think of it I wont do the same for Apple. I love the look of their new machines, but it still isnt free!

One of the best things about Ubuntu or the other linux distros is the community that surrounds it. Check out www.ubuntuforums.org to see for your self. If your ever stuck there is always someone who has had the same problem or someone around to point you in the right direction.

  • 182.
  • At 12:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • marc dufresne wrote:

Defect, man, defect !!!!
I deep sixed my MS box about 2 years ago for a mac.

It just works... and above all, is FUN to use.

  • 183.
  • At 12:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Joe wrote:

I am running Mac OS X, Windows XP, Windows Vista and Ubuntu (all on an Intel Mac), so I am in a good position to make comparisons.

XP has been around for a while. Although its security stinks, there are drivers for most things. Vista will still be in beta for a year or more, the only difference is that you have to pay to test it now.

Ubuntu seems like a very thin varnish and an very ugly OS and it is very difficult, if not impossible, to get drivers for common hardware items. If you have more time than money, that's the way to go.

I am prepared to pay a little more for something that is a whole lot better- MacOS X.

  • 184.
  • At 12:18 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • rockit99 wrote:

I'm an IT professional who's dealt with Mac's for nearly 15 years. I tried working with Windows but it's such an exasperating and frustrating experience - and I prefer to go home without headaches. I do still have to deal with the odd PC though and the headaches are still there.

I will say that around 90% of mainstream applications can be found on Macs and Windows, so in theory it doesn't matter which you use, but I've witnessed stauch PC users switching and saying "is it always this easy on a Mac?"

The fact of the matter is, as others have pointed out here, most people using computers for a living need to just be able to get on with their work and not have to wrestle with their machines in order to work properly.

Upgrading an operating system is not trivial. The user should NOT discover after an upgrade that a lot of their hardware no longer works. And expecting the average user to trawl the web for compatible drivers is simply unacceptable, even if they know what to look for.

Imagine taking your car in for a major 10,000 mile service, getting it back to discover the wipers, heater and lights don't work. Oh, and only two brakes work as the new system 'isn't quite ready for four'. And you need a different kind of oil than can only be purchased as one brand of garage. For a lot of money. And you need a password to drive onto the forecourt. But if you've changed the colour of your car they won't let you in.... etc etc etc

  • 185.
  • At 12:18 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • jim-uk wrote:

With the exception of DirectX 10 there is nothing vista can do that can't be done with XP, why people are wasting money on this rubbish is beyond me.

  • 186.
  • At 12:20 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Robert wrote:

Try Ubuntu. It installs in about ten minutes, looks great and its fast. Worth a try at least.

Sadly I need Dreamweaver and Vegas Video so have to stick with Windows for the moment. But I'm hoping Linux will develop enough over the next 3-4 years so I'll never have to switch to Vista.

  • 187.
  • At 12:21 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Kevin wrote:

To those who say "its not microsoft's fault you need new drivers". You should remember that NO-ONE asked micro$oft "PLEASE MAKE VISTA INCOMPATIBLE with older software". Its like Ford selling a car with needs a unique tow bar and roofrack and most tyres are not suitable. M$'s standard strategy is to introduce as many incompatibilities as possible - especially with other windows platforms. Then if you add one new machine you fall down the slope of upgrading EVERY machine very quickly because there will be issues otherwise. eg. printer and modem sharing between most versions of windows. Its the same with Office file formats.

  • 188.
  • At 12:21 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike Mitchell wrote:

I stopped upgrading Windows at Windows 98 Second Edition, which I am currently running. The Microsoft Money Machine can take a running jump! My 98 SE setup works just fine with everything I want to do.

  • 189.
  • At 12:22 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Steven King wrote:

Tried downloading and installing new drivers.........? You shouldn't have to replace your hardware.

The manufacturer for the hardware is responsible for the drivers, not MS.

MS have their faults but can't blame them for everything.

Oh, and reading some of the comments. Ubuntu and any other operating system would have the same problem if they had a major overahul, which is what has happened with Vista, so pulease!!!

  • 190.
  • At 12:23 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dean wrote:

It feels somewhat unfair to say it but to go out and buy a machine with a copy of a brand new operating system and expect it to work with all of your third party peripherals is slightly naive. To reinforce what some others have said in response to your letter, you can rarely expect the first release of a complex software product to be free of issues, regardless of much testing has been done prior to release. It may not be ideal but it's simply a fact software development life.

It's also worth noting that unless the manufacturers of the third party products you are having problems with have stated that they will not support Vista, you can safely expect them to release driver updates in the very near future. Talk of being forced to spend hundreds of pounds on replacement equipment therefore seems rather melodramatic.

  • 191.
  • At 12:23 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Michael wrote:

When OSX first arrived there were compatibility issues with almost all necessary software. Many software companies took over a year to bring their products up to speed OSX. Suggesting that the apple operating system didn't have compatibility issues is dishonest. The user will not have a better time with Ubuntu or other versions of Linux. Not only will most of the article writer's hardware, not work with Linux, but the GUI and lack of software will be like downgrading to WIN 3.1. Vista is what OSX was 4 years ago. For that reason alone, the article writer should consider switching to OSX.

  • 192.
  • At 12:25 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Eddy wrote:

Comment number 4's reference to a power station versus a gas boiler rather misses the point with respect to reliability. Just as a search engine (or a gas boiler) can occasionally fail without catastrophic results, the same cannot be said for a power station.

  • 193.
  • At 12:30 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark Wingad wrote:

Apple managed to change an entire OS to a new CPU with less problems than vista seems to be creating. At least 80% of the software still worked if slower on a newer Mac.

Vista looks nice and probably will be a good thing when the kinks are ironed out of it.

I find it very amusing how there are so many versions of it and the price ranges are amazing. You get this feature or that feature spend 300 pounds you can have all features....

Personelly sticking to Apple and OSX just makes more sense in the long run.

  • 194.
  • At 12:32 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil Haigh wrote:

I'd like to say I am surprised by your problems, but I'm not. I decided months ago that my next personal purchase would be a Mac. I personally avoid Microsoft software where there is a viable alternative, and I only accidentally installed Internet Explorer 7 because it was sent to me as a 'critical update'!

DO NOT UPGRADE TO VISTA... wait until you need a new machine.

  • 195.
  • At 12:32 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stuart wrote:

That's right, get a Mac...and pay an extra £300 for the badge! Isn't that what school children do when they have a tantrum about not having the latest pair of street cred trainers??

Why don't you save your money and ask someone who knows what they're doing for help!

Otherwise, go for it, splash out on your expensive (Mac) word processor so that you can send emails and tell your friends you have a trendy computer ;O)

  • 196.
  • At 12:33 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike wrote:

Install virtual pc (which is free) and build a windows xp machine on your vista laptop. You will be able to use your camera and PDA until suitable vista drivers appear.

  • 197.
  • At 12:34 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Carl Melia wrote:

I've done what alot of people seem to be doing. Upon reading a 'Have Your Say' thread about Visa I ended up googling Ubuntu. I dual boot with XP at the moment but am in the process of making the full transition to Linux. I dont believe in lining Bill's pockets with my hard earned cash, come to think of it I wont do the same for Apple. I love the look of their new machines, but it still isnt free!

One of the best things about Ubuntu or the other linux distros is the community that surrounds it. Check out www.ubuntuforums.org to see for your self. If your ever stuck there is always someone who has had the same problem or someone around to point you in the right direction.

  • 198.
  • At 12:34 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ian wrote:

There's another good solution. It's called Linux - and it's free. Try SUSE 10.2 and you'll wonder why you ever bothered with Microsoft

  • 199.
  • At 12:35 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike Edwards wrote:

I'm amazed at the number of people commenting on this article who blame everyone EXCEPT Microsoft for things not working with Vista.


Vista is Microsoft's new product - not Olympus, not HP or anyone else. It's Microsoft's job to ensure that older hardware and software works with Vista - not anyone else's. Why did Microsoft design Vista in such a way that it breaks older applications and drivers? They did this - not the developers of the applications and the drivers.


It constantly amazes me how many people are prepared to come up with excuses for Microsoft when Microsoft put out a second-rate product. In most other industries, Microsoft would have been out of business by now for ignoring the basic requirements of their customers.


The reason they can get away with this is simple - they have a virtual monopoly over the PC market (sorry, Mac devotees, the Mac share of the market is simply tiny). About time the competition authorities got serious and broke up this monopoly - we are all paying (literally) for the consequences.

Yours, Mike.

  • 200.
  • At 12:35 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jonathan wrote:

Well what can be said about that? 15 years! If you can’t tell the real benefits of using windows over Mac! And you feel ridiculed by your Mac using friends you should really switch! Vista is extremely simple! I have been using it even in its beta days, I take my hat off to Microsoft! Also if you don’t like the flashy interface as usual you can switch it off!

Hi Robert,

I may be able to help you with at least one of your problems!
For handheld devices, like your Ipaq, that run Windows Mobile, the way they connect to and synchronise with Windows PCs has changed in Vista. I haven’t had a chance to play with this myself yet, so I don’t know the in-depth details of it I’m afraid!
ActiveSync (the software you had to install on XP) has been replaced by the ‘Windows Mobile Device Centre’, which as I understand it uses the new Sync Centre in Vista to connect to your Ipaq.
Windows Mobile Device Centre is available from Microsoft here;
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsmobile/devicecenter.mspx
You almost certainly need the 32 Bit version for your laptop, and that should get you going!

As for your Olympus recorder, I know a couple of people who’ve got Olympus recorders in the last couple of months, and it looked to me like they haven’t full updated their software in a while! They do already list some of their cameras as being compatible with Vista, so I’d guess they’re working they’re way though their product range…
Olympus’ software download page is here, if it’s any help;
http://www.olympus.co.uk/consumer/2590_software.cfm

Hope this helps,
Thanks,
Chris

  • 202.
  • At 12:38 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • derek ralph wrote:

i would heartilly agree that vista is a flawed operating system where by it has some good points the amount of bad i have found in 3 days of using far outweigh the good.
I have been downloading files from the likes of nero and even microsoft and get crc errors whatever i download over 10mb in filesize and nobody seems to know why..The training socalled help staff have had is appaling they really should have tested this with other commercial software before releasing it for us all to have a woes with it.Now i have got that of my chest catch ya laters guys.

  • 203.
  • At 12:38 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Charles McEleavy wrote:

Robert, here is yet another irksome little problem that awaits all new Vista purchasing persons.

Call security now...cancel or allow!

Switching times, perhaps?

http://www.apple.com/getamac/

  • 204.
  • At 12:38 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mysturji wrote:

The ONLY reason anyone would ever possibly want a windows machine is to play games on.
The range of games available on Apple and *NIX machines is pitiful, but they will do everything else.
The reason I haven't switched to Mac (yet) is that I do enjoy gaming, and the dedicated games consoles never really appealed, as they come out so frequently, I'd have to upgrade every year.
On the other hand, the Wii looks interesting, and Solaris is free...

  • 205.
  • At 12:38 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew wrote:

I am pretty surprised by your comments. I installed a clean version of Vista on a Dell laptop of about 18 months in age. I was expecting a host of issues, and lack of functionality in the Aero graphics. But i have to say I have been totally blown away by the ease of installation - even the Aero transparency works beautifully. NOT ONE BUG OR PROBLEM, it was a total joy to install. Dell had updated all the drivers I required.

Blaming Microsoft for your drivers not working is a strange way to do it. Driver compatibility has ALWAYS been an issue, its not MS's fault that new drivers haven't been released. Manufacturers such as Dell have had access to Vista for months. I would suggest that HP have no motivation to update drivers... however persuading customers to buy new hardware contains plenty of motivation.

  • 206.
  • At 12:39 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Marr wrote:

Would you be happy if you bought a new car and it didn't drive. I rest my case.

  • 207.
  • At 12:43 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • derek ralph wrote:

i would heartilly agree that vista is a flawed operating system where by it has some good points the amount of bad i have found in 3 days of using far outweigh the good.
I have been downloading files from the likes of nero and even microsoft and get crc errors whatever i download over 10mb in filesize and nobody seems to know why..The training socalled help staff have had is appaling they really should have tested this with other commercial software before releasing it for us all to have a woes with it.Now i have got that of my chest catch ya laters guys.

  • 208.
  • At 12:43 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nuciphaal wrote:

Oh dear, many things wrong here. Firstly, perhaps it would have been prudent of you to check if your hardware would be compatible. To be honest, I think it's user error. My iPaq worked without issue under Vista, and quite correctly, it's been pointed out the it's Olympus who are responsible for creating drivers for the OS. I really think you should refrain from making comments such as "And, just so you know, I’ve never once had a comparably horrible experience with the Google boys.", when clearly Google develop and provide web services, content and other products, but NOT operating systems. This statement pretty much invalidates most of your criticisms, as MS clearly know that you don't know what you're talking about. You may as well have said 'Well I've never set fire to my kitchen while driving my car'. Vista's new UI features can be disabled with one click, so why not disable them? And if you're not happy, switch to Mac. Sadly, that's not always an option as OSX simply doesn't have the range of applications that Windows does. OS choice is about your requirements. Research them before whingeing.

Given that Vista doesnt include any amazing advances for the common user that aren't already in XP whats the point?

Im a developer, I've been running Vista since the "longhorn" previews and it really isnt anything great. Take away the the aero interface and some advanced features and it's a lame duck with no where near the support which XP currently has.

Until i HAVE too, I wont bother running this as the main OS (Vista wouldnt even install on SATA RAID0) and I warn off anyone else thinking about it. You'll be impressed with the interface for about 30 seconds then it will be frustration from then on. Reminds me of the pain of trying XP 64bit addition which was terrible.

Combine the might of Ubuntu, Mac look and feel and Windows reach and I would be heaven ! :)

  • 210.
  • At 12:45 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Simon wrote:

It is fair to blame MS for the drivers not working, used to work on XP didnt they ?

MS's high handed attitude to vendirs is well documented elsewhere

  • 211.
  • At 12:45 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ian Cooper wrote:

As always there is some truth and some falsehood here.

As another poster pointed out blaming MS for the lack of a Vista driver for your Olympus digital recorder is ridiculous. You need to pursue your hardware manafacturer to get the right drivers. I could not immediately spot any drivers on Olympus's site (http://www.olympusamerica.com/cpg_section/cpg_downloads.asp). It is not as though Olympus have not been aware of Vista shipping (or Apple with ITunes). It looks to me as though neither Olympus (or Apple) really care about their customers because they did not make compatible software available for VIsta's launch.

If you have trouble synching your HP Ipaq it may be that you need to install WIndows Mobile Device Centre. You can get it here (http://www.microsoft.com/windowsmobile/devicecenter.mspx).

But blaming MS for the faults of Olympus is a bit like blaming MS that
Apple could not be bothered to ready ITunes for Vista. It really is Olympus and Apple's fault.

  • 212.
  • At 12:45 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Roger wrote:

So, all the apologists for Vista blame the problems on someone else - no drivers, third parties etc. If we are to believe the Microsoft advertising, Vista took 5 years, and millions of programming hours to produce. MS then charge £210 for a copy - yet they still launch a faulty product and expect people to wait until SP1 for the mistakes to be corrected! Can anyone else, in any other industry get away with this? Ford or Boeing for example?
Me? I stick with Sabayon Linux - works out of the box, has a 3D desktop and all the eye-candy Vista can offer and more.

I'll chime in here and be one of the few sticking up for Windows Vista. I think overall it is excellent. Not only is it much faster, its user friendly for those stepping up from Windows XP and much easier to search with, browse the internet, play music and organise photos with.

I'm also a mac user mostly for my photography and while when I first got the Mac I was praising it no end, I still like it, but for day to day use and doing more things like Gaming, browsing, creating DVD's, movies and for better overall sound I use my Windows PC far more. Yeah the Mac UI looks fantastic and generally it never crashes, but thats not all that great when there is little for most people to use it for.

  • 214.
  • At 12:48 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike D wrote:

Don't listen to any of the delusional mac zealots. Their simple polo necked lives are enriched only by petty baubles and glittering piffle.

The reason mac users say they have no problems is because they don't use their overpriced machines for much beyond surfing the web for hair gel and designer hats and scarves.

As for linux, it's a disgraceful mess of command line sorcery and low grade open source software, and is only to be considered by people with large beards, no social life and questionable personal hygene.

  • 215.
  • At 12:49 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • derek ralph wrote:

i would heartilly agree that vista is a flawed operating system where by it has some good points the amount of bad i have found in 3 days of using far outweigh the good.
I have been downloading files from the likes of nero and even microsoft and get crc errors whatever i download over 10mb in filesize and nobody seems to know why..The training socalled help staff have had is appaling they really should have tested this with other commercial software before releasing it for us all to have a woes with it.Now i have got that of my chest catch ya laters guys.

  • 216.
  • At 12:50 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Rohit wrote:

Why do you keep calling it Mac OS? It's Unix people. A standard operating system created by the some genuinely smart guys. All Apple did was a sundae dressing. Microsoft re-wrote it's core operating system. Apple could never dare do that. Cos they have more in common with fashion designers. Apple isn't technology innovator. Never was.

If you understand technology right, you would say, Linux(Deb), BSD, Windows.

Being an early adopter is likely to be risky. That said I've upgraded my Macs many times without major issues.

  • 218.
  • At 12:51 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dave Williams wrote:

Well, I did the same, I upgraded to Vista and here I am, without two Hardware components working. My Netgear SC101 Storage Device for my Hard Drives and my HP 4670 Scanner. Now, this is not Microsoft's fault. The Hardwear Vendors have had two years to get their drivers to work with the new Operating System of Vista. I'm sure they do this for the MAC OSX. So before you start to have a go at Microsoft, you need to see why the Hardware vendors have not sorted out drivers for the hardware. Is is such a major problem for them to produce these drivers?

  • 219.
  • At 12:51 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • john cusick wrote:

I don’t put the incompatibility with hardware at the fault of Microsoft.

It is the hardware manufacturers at fault. Vista formerly known as longhorn for many years has been available in beta form for drivers to be made and tested in time for the launch of Vista final.

I have an Epson printer that I cannot get working right with Vista the same with my NVIDIA SLI card setup and lastly my TV card has no final drivers yet just beta.

But they will be along so I can use beta drivers or vista basic drivers in the mean time and this is why I am dual booting with XP.

So it is not MS at fault it is the other companies. As they had ample time to get drivers ready and over to MS as digitally signed and integrated with vista.

  • 220.
  • At 12:52 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andy Twiss wrote:

Any non-technical user who goes out and buys newly released hardware deserves all they get! Just because the telly says 'Buy Vista' doesn't mean you should buy Vista.

Lack of techinical knowledge about a product is the number one reason not to buy it. If you were actually to do a little research before your purchase, exactly like you would with a new car for instance, you would realise that now is not yet the time for Vista.

Do your homework before spending your hard-earned!

  • 221.
  • At 12:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • jd wrote:

Try Linux (Ubuntu is good). It's free, secure and uses fewer resources than Vista needs.

  • 222.
  • At 12:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Davy wrote:

Microsoft is the one to blame. They release a new OS but they don't leave time to hardware and software company to test and develop Vista compatible products. Even if companies had beta version of Vista, for lots of them there is no point to spent time and money fixing bugs which may not be there in final release. So if you don't want to waste time and money, wait MS fixes releases SP1 and 3rd parties vista ready drivers and software.
People who bought Vista and expected to have a trouble free upgrade was not realistic. Compatibility issues have always existed in the past. So stop complaining or ask a refund...:-)

  • 223.
  • At 12:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Cusick wrote:

I don’t put the incompatibility with hardware at the fault of Microsoft.

It is the hardware manufacturers at fault. Vista formerly known as longhorn for many years has been available in beta form for drivers to be made and tested in time for the launch of Vista final.

I have an Epson printer that I cannot get working right with Vista the same with my NVIDIA SLI card setup and lastly my TV card has no final drivers yet just beta.

But they will be along but I can use beta drivers or vista basic drivers in the mean time and this is why I am dual booting with XP.

So it is not MS at fault it is the other companies. As they had ample time to get drivers ready and over to MS as digitally signed and integrated with vista.

As a technologist, these comments come as no surprise. Vista is still relatively speaking bleeding edge. Combined with the open system in which Windows Vista operates, its no surprise that certain devices are yet to work.

Take your Olympus software (I presume for a DV Video Camera of some sort). This software is developed by Olympus, and is probably not working due to incompatibilities between the drivers, and Vista's new security features (which "normal" people have been asking for for years). It will simply take some time for Olympus to release a patch for their software (if they do). You may be able to run it in compatibility mode (XP was able to do this for Windows 98 and DOS).

I agree your frustration with your HP iPaq, and its a shame its not working. But again I wouldn't be at all surprised if the actual drivers behind the device were developed by HP, and thus haven't been updated for Vista. Again, we're suffering from the open standards of the PC architecture.

Flip this around to Apple's way of doing things (which may, or may not, be better, I make no comment in that regard), and the only mobile device you'd truly be able to use on Mac inside of its closed architecture, and be garunteed for it to work, is one either developed, or licensed, by Apple. For instance the iPhone is a closed platform.

On the one hand, this give more of a guaruntee of stability, but also limits your choice of devices, software and other related tools. For many people this may be desirable, if they are willing to pay the premium, and don't step outside of the bounds of what Apple allows.

Its a simple choice about what you value most, in essence. Openness, and thus being able to use an extremely wide range of devices, software etc, which may have some incompatibility problems, or a closed system which is more likely to work fine, but may not have the tools, or be as affordable.

As an aside, I do wonder why you upgraded to a Vista laptop so soon after launch, and whether there was a killer feature you were moving for, as most people don't normally move for atleast a couple of months, giving time for these bugs with both the OS, and 3rd party software to be worked out.

  • 225.
  • At 12:55 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ann wrote:

My Olympus voice recorder and its software work beautifully on my Mac Powerbook G4 (a machine made in April 2004 and running the latest Mac OS with no issues, after several problem-free OS upgrades). The PB has also never crashed, and has never had a virus (or antivirus software).

I have to jump on the "get a Mac" bandwagon here. What the BBC would have in extra expenses in relation to acquisition, would easily pay off in regard to support and maintainance - not to mention productivity.

  • 226.
  • At 12:56 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Pugh wrote:

Nobody with your experience should willingly buy Microsoft products until they've been on the market for at least a year. Let other poor saps be their free beta testers!

  • 227.
  • At 12:57 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Logsdon wrote:

Don't bother throwing more money away buying a Mac laptop until you've tried Linux which IMHO is better than Mac, has a better interface that is X-compatible, is a lot cheaper and will run on your present platform.

Load Kubuntu 6.10 via a live CD to see how it works then install it, partitioning your disk which is probably bigger than you need anyway. That way you can have both systems available until you decide to throw MS away for good. I have Kubuntu 6.10 on my Dell Inspiron 6000 and there were *no* installation problems at all.

There is a learning curve for sure but at least there is also open source maintenance that doesn't depend on the Redmond response rate - or Apple for that matter.

  • 228.
  • At 12:58 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • chris wrote:

what is the point buying vista when xp works fine, xp is cheaper and works just as well as vista. people may say its more secure, well its not really all you have to do is get a decent sercurity package.

people might say mac is better, its really a mith. there starting to find bugs haha. macs are for advanced users, a little kid wnt want a mac for his 13th birthday its way to anvanced.

  • 229.
  • At 12:59 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • jean wrote:

Microsoft focus on showering you with unnecessary features to sell their products when all we all want is SOMETHING THAT WORKS.

Fancy graphics with flowers popping up at the bottom of the screen and taking paper clips make me want to vomit, because all of that just eats up the CPU unnecessarily.

When is Microsoft going to realize that Google have the key. It's to take a minimalist approach to the software you provide, and in doing so you can provide something that WORKS, instead of a million features that don't work.

If you'll go ahead and rush into Vista what do you expect. Noob.

Being a techie, I was well versed on the Vista issues and problems, when my XP machine gave up the ghost late last year. After 12 years of Windows use. I switched my home PC to a Mac. I've not regretted it for a second

No more regular Windows Viruses and crashes and freezes, to worry about it's a dream in comparison.

I think Robert has got his assessment correct, and could have saved a few hundred quid if he concluded that before he bought his Vista laptop.

  • 232.
  • At 01:02 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

The answer to your problems are simple. There is no need to wait for a new service pack. The problems stem from the fact that Vista is heavily security based. I had similar problems installing some software, but simply by removing certain secuity settings these can be resolved easily.

There is no need to buy any new hardware, just spend some time learning about the system rather than doing the easy option and complaining.

  • 233.
  • At 01:03 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Roger wrote:

So, all the apologists for Vista blame the problems on someone else - no drivers, third parties etc. If we are to believe the Microsoft advertising, Vista took 5 years, and millions of programming hours to produce. MS then charge £210 for a copy - yet they still launch a faulty product and expect people to wait until SP1 for the mistakes to be corrected! Can anyone else, in any other industry get away with this? Ford or Boeing for example?
Me? I stick with Sabayon Linux - works out of the box, has a 3D desktop and all the eye-candy Vista can offer and more.

  • 234.
  • At 01:03 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ben Hayford wrote:

For many years before the announcement of Windows Vista, the ongoing project was referred to as project longhorn and was something of a bogey-man that struck fear into the hearts of many of my peers. It was said that the operating system released from Project Longhorn would be Microsoft's final step in taking over the entire IT market, that the OS would make all computers incompatible with anything that isn't Microsoft and force consumers to convert to their OS or face alienation.
It seems that this prophecy wasn't far wrong, if a little melodramatic...
I'm going to sit on the fence and carry on running XP Pro until I've seen how Vista works out; once all of those famous MS bugs which they're so good at making have been worked out. I'd suggest that everyone else should do the same.

  • 235.
  • At 01:09 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andy Twiss wrote:

Any non-technical user who goes out and buys newly released hardware deserves all they get! Just because the telly says 'Buy Vista' doesn't mean you should buy Vista.

Lack of techinical knowledge about a product is the number one reason not to buy it. If you were actually to do a little research before your purchase, exactly like you would with a new car for instance, you would realise that now is not yet the time for Vista.

Do your homework before spending your hard-earned!

  • 236.
  • At 01:10 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Cusick wrote:

I don’t put the incompatibility with hardware at the fault of Microsoft.

It is the hardware manufacturers at fault. Vista formerly known as longhorn for many years has been available in beta form for drivers to be made and tested in time for the launch of Vista final.

I have an Epson printer that I cannot get working right with Vista the same with my NVIDIA SLI card setup and lastly my TV card has no final drivers yet just beta.

But they will be along but I can use beta drivers or vista basic drivers in the mean time and this is why I am dual booting with XP.

So it is not MS at fault it is the other companies. As they had ample time to get drivers ready and over to MS as digitally signed and integrated with vista.

Yes, go and buy a MAC as all these people suggest and then, 80% of websites you view will be messed up, re-buy all your software as it's null and void on a MAC and then spend the next 5 months working out all the keyboard shorcuts that now dont work.

I've used MACS and hate them, they do nothing for me.

Just trendy "Anti-Microsoft" computer nerds who like GMail and IPods.

  • 238.
  • At 01:15 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • stuart wrote:

I have been running Vista on a Toshiba Tablet, HP Slim line Desktop and Dell Laptops for the and had no problems at all everything worked first time. It should be the hardware people you complain about they have had more than enough time to make drivers ready for Vista after all you can't expect Microsoft to test every possible bit of hardware in the world

  • 239.
  • At 01:16 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Hanlon wrote:

What a surprise, Microsoft have done what has always worked in the past by releasing a partly tested product with fully tested marketing.
Originally it worked because IBM forgot the P means personal and engineered OS/2 for mainframe software engineers ( true ). Apple engineered their machines to industrial strength reliability, and still do.
Microsoft released poor code and blasted General Management with 'look how cheap we are'. General Management, selling their own customers on totallife cost of ownership, rejected IT Directors warnings about support costs and lost time when PC's crash and insisted on Bill's Bargain.
My next machine will be my first Mac

Being a techie, I was well versed on the Vista issues and problems, when my XP machine gave up the ghost late last year. After 12 years of Windows use. I switched my home PC to a Mac. I've not regretted it for a second

No more regular Windows Viruses and crashes and freezes, to worry about it's a dream in comparison.

I think Robert has got his assessment correct, and could have saved a few hundred quid if he concluded that before he bought his Vista laptop.

I notice that many comments to this blog advise Robert to make the move to macintosh. This does reflect the comment on the smugness of mac owner, but there is a point that is overlooked when discussing any of mac's products and that is that Microsoft also produces software for them. Anyone who has uses office for the mac (I own and use both systems) will find it easier to use and much better looking than the version available for the PC.

It seems like a lack of effort not to get their globally dominant software to work properly when it is possible for them to do so on an OS that isn't even theirs. It is this that has finally tempted me to upgrade my PC's operating system, but not to vista. There are many different variants of Linux available and I am currently trialling ubuntu to see if I can live with it, but it won't matter if I can't because it won't have cost me anything to do so.

I would encourage other computer users to use the opportunity that vista has given them to try a change whether that be to the mac or to another PC OS. I am by no means a mac or linux nerd but I'll be happy with anything that does what I want it to.

Ian

  • 242.
  • At 01:23 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Francis Shephard wrote:

Don't Buy and they will fix. Its simple. Don't upgrade to Vista and demand XP and Microsoft will get the message and will have to fix. The inherent complexity of windows trying to be all things to all people and forwards and backwards in time, is the achilles heel. Look at Apple. A clean break - with OSX and they're steaming forwards.

Windows should be based on a UNIX file system also. NTFS - please, two folders on the desktop of the same name, one inside the other and XP spits the dummy and cannot give an accurate figure on remaining hard disk space. Come on. Kill NTFS and get Unix under the hood.

Microsoft aren't evil, they're just a cult which believes they're stuff "Rules & Rocks" but in a very MS way.

  • 243.
  • At 01:36 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew wrote:

No one forces you to upgrade. What I don't from windows haters is - if you don't like the software then don't use it !!! No one forces you too. Is it really that difficult a choice ?

  • 244.
  • At 01:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Martin Hughes wrote:

No Robert, It's NOT your fault.

Whenever Microsoft bring out a new product they apply marketing pressure, to make those who don't upgrade feel as if they are being left behind.

Of course, anybody who is happy with what is already working is not being left behind but is actually showing common sense. My home PC was purchased in 1999 and still works perfectly with minimal upgrades.

In short, "If it ain't broke don't mend it". If upgrading to Vista breaks your machine, downgrade to XP and reinstall and then it will probably work.

Otherwise go back to the shop and demand your money back as the laptop is unfit for purpose.

  • 245.
  • At 01:39 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • P. McMahon wrote:

Peter Woodall remarks above on Huw Edwards' crawly interview with Bill Gates. Most bewilderingly, Edwards hailed Gates as 'the great innovator'. No demur from Gates, of course, but he must have been having a little laugh to himself. Gates' "innovations" are of the kind of which the great acquisitor and asset-stripper Lord Hanson would have been proud. Windows is built on patent-free, copyright-free software without which it would have neither user interface nor internet capabilities. The relevant code was added over the years before the crazy introduction of American software patents helped Microsoft - an arch collector of the latter - further stifle genuine competitive IT innovation.

If you're miffed with Vista, you can always go to the even more proprietorial Apple, but Linux with its low cost and rock solid reliability and security is ready and waiting, complete with Click'n'Run as several posters say above.

After running and testing the beta version of Vista for a while, and knowing it could run my essential applications satisfactorily. I decided to take the plunge and buy Vista on it's release.

Granted, there are some driver problems but on the whole, I find Vista to actually be quicker than my old XP! I am however prepared to go hunting for beta and hacked drivers to get the best performance.

For people who don't even know what a beta driver is or where to go looking for one (ie. Nvidia hacked drivers for my laptop, which have vastly improved Aero performance) then I say stick with XP for a while, at least for say 3 or 4 months until companies such as Olympus have created their drivers for maximum compatibility.

I do, however feel it is unfair to always blame Microsoft with the problems Vista might be having. People have pointed out that it is generally the software DRIVERS created by other companies which are the root of the problems. The final version of vista was actually released several months ago, surely the main companies could have produced compatible drivers by now?

I upgraded as I knew what I was letting myself in for and don't regret it for one second. I have even gone back to IE7 from Firefox 2 as it's more stable so far!

  • 247.
  • At 01:45 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John wrote:

Rob -
1) If you don't like Vista's interface why did you buy a laptop with Vista installed on it. That's like buying a car from a manufacturer having never seen it.
2)You'll probably notice on the packaging to your olympus camera and your HP IPAQ that it has no mention of working on Windows Vista. If it didn't mention that it would work on a Mac and you went out and brought a Mac laptop would that be Apple's problem? Before you go pinning the blame on Microsoft you should pin the blame on yourself for not checking with your product manufacturers that they had drivers / software updates available before you switched to a computer with a different operating system.
Please don't get hacked off at your own ignorance and then pin the blame on someone else for it. Think before you blog!

  • 248.
  • At 01:46 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Martin Hughes wrote:

No Robert, It's NOT your fault.

Whenever Microsoft bring out a new product they apply marketing pressure, to make those who don't upgrade feel as if they are being left behind.

Of course, anybody who is happy with what is already working is not being left behind but is actually showing common sense. My home PC was purchased in 1999 and still works perfectly with minimal upgrades.

In short, "If it ain't broke don't mend it". If upgrading to Vista breaks your machine, downgrade to XP and reinstall and then it will probably work.

Otherwise go back to the shop and demand your money back as the laptop is unfit for purpose.

  • 249.
  • At 01:49 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John wrote:

Rob -
1) If you don't like Vista's interface why did you buy a laptop with Vista installed on it. That's like buying a car from a manufacturer having never seen it.
2)You'll probably notice on the packaging to your olympus camera and your HP IPAQ that it has no mention of working on Windows Vista. If it didn't mention that it would work on a Mac and you went out and brought a Mac laptop would that be Apple's problem? Before you go pinning the blame on Microsoft you should pin the blame on yourself for not checking with your product manufacturers that they had drivers / software updates available before you switched to a computer with a different operating system.
Please don't get hacked off at your own ignorance and then pin the blame on someone else for it. Think before you blog!

  • 250.
  • At 01:49 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tony wrote:

After running and testing the beta version of Vista for a while, and knowing it could run my essential applications satisfactorily. I decided to take the plunge and buy Vista on it's release.

Granted, there are some driver problems but on the whole, I find Vista to actually be quicker than my old XP! I am however prepared to go hunting for beta and hacked drivers to get the best performance.

For people who don't even know what a beta driver is or where to go looking for one (ie. Nvidia hacked drivers for my laptop, which have vastly improved Aero performance) then I say stick with XP for a while, at least for say 3 or 4 months until companies such as Olympus have created their drivers for maximum compatibility.

I do, however feel it is unfair to always blame Microsoft with the problems Vista might be having. People have pointed out that it is generally the software DRIVERS created by other companies which are the root of the problems. The final version of vista was actually released several months ago, surely the main companies could have produced compatible drivers by now?

I upgraded as I knew what I was letting myself in for and don't regret it for one second. I have even gone back to IE7 from Firefox 2 as it's more stable so far!

  • 251.
  • At 01:52 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • B J King wrote:

It's quite funny listening to all the Mac owners getting so excited over the release of the latest O/S from Microsoft.

Of course, we all know how it will go. Mac owners will gloat, without good cause I might add, Vista will find it's way onto over 90% of PC's, just like it's predecessors have done and everybody will forget what a Mac is again until the next big Microsoft release where the process will repeat itself.

Strange how PC owners are quite content to use their machines without trying to sell them to every Mac user they know and yet Mac owners seem completely incapable of doing the same.

  • 252.
  • At 01:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ann I Am wrote:

See the light? Buy a Mac!

For how long will Microsoft keep on trying to integrate everything?

I agree with Jorn. "And if you play games, surely it's better to get a console. If you like music, buy a decent stereo."

I total integration the goal. My guess it is going to be very difficult and I am not sure the average user will be patient with all the problems arising.

Klas from MyWebDesktop.net

  • 254.
  • At 01:54 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew wrote:

Macs aren't the answer. They are the preserve of the supercilious and for those that have a relationship with their computer similar to one that a normal person has with their partner. Have you seen the world of Mac recently? Apple is the new Microsoft.

Really, these things are just tools to do a job. You don't need a flashy computer any more than you need a Gucci garden spade or a Vivienne Westwood lawnmower. I'll stick with what I've got, keep my cash for going out and having a life.

  • 255.
  • At 01:54 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew McDermott wrote:

Get a Mac. I have three. The rest of this post ought to be unnecessary detail, but if you must...They look beautiful, work seamlessly, provide consistent reliability, make me happy, update frequently (without fault) and impressively, have never rejected a piece of hardware.

Vista, a new version of Windows, that like previous versions, doesn't work very well. Despite trying its hardest to behave like a Mac, for over twenty years. There's reliability for you!

Dorian, I disagree with your view that Olympus are responsible for drivers. Vista is overwhelmed with system barriers that prevent simple compatibility with third party devices, in the name of security. Microsoft have set out to control third party access to Vista, because it reduces the risks. A Mac will simply recognise the type of device, ask the user if they would like to use it, confirm that the user has the authority to grant permission, and then let the user get on with the task in hand - assuming it presents a security risk. If it doesn't, it will just let you use it!!. And because Macs work, I get other stuff done, instead of wasting hours tracking down and downloading and configuring... Vista is a mass market consumer product. You shouldn't have to wait for service pack 1. The presumption on the part of experienced users, that a SP will follow shortly, underlines Microsoft's major failing in the last decade. It should work straight out of the box. Or will the really experienced users say "wait for SP2...."

No responsibility is accepted for readers of this post using my personal opinion of equipment & software that I have paid for, and used satisfactorily, for nearly five years. Its just my personal opinion. ;o)

Vista Service Pack 1? Already on the way :(

S-E

PS - Now why did I have to fire up IE7 (as opposed to Firefox 2) for previewing that to work?

PS2 - And it counts "Preview" as "Post", so if you "Preview", amend and "Post", the Beeb-box thinks you are a troll-bot. Wonderful.

  • 257.
  • At 01:57 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Robert Dawes wrote:

Get a Mac? I can't get a Mac, so much software I need is not available on Mac and is unlikely ever to be. Never mind waiting for a couple of drivers, how about not being a large enough Apple user base to ever make it worth porting software to?

  • 258.
  • At 01:59 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Rod wrote:

//Yes, go and buy a MAC as all these people suggest and then, 80% of websites you view will be messed up, re-buy all your software as it's null and void on a MAC and then spend the next 5 months working out all the keyboard shorcuts that now dont work.
I've used MACS and hate them, they do nothing for me.
Just trendy "Anti-Microsoft" computer nerds who like GMail and IPods.//

80% of websites!!??

are you mad?

in over 18 months i havent come across a SINGLE website i cant access.

as to re-buying software.. most of it is freeware or shareware, OPEN OFFICE for instance FREE.

you say you used macs before, WHEN?

i find people tend to be anti anything thats a pain in the backside.. if thats your OS then change it.

to use the car analogy: you dont go to a garage and buy a windscreen,oil cap, chassis and wheels from seperate vendors and then expect that it will function smoothly.. or if you do, but then it has a problem the oil cap guy will pass the buck to the windscreen guy etc.

Apple provide a one stop solution, there is nowhere for them to pass the buck to.

and as to your comments about keyboards... i bet you HATE mobile phones? still used to the old dial on telephones of the 60s and prior - yeah?

  • 259.
  • At 02:00 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Simon Hudson wrote:

Dear Mr Mercedes
Give me back my weekend. I bought a new Mercedes saloon – and that’s when the trouble began.

My dislike of your new driver controls you can put down to the conservatism that comes with advancing years. However having loyally stuck by the galumphing, unaesthetic functionality of your previous cars over the past 15 years, while faced with ridicule from pretentious Jaguar-loving types, I resent your attempt at an elegance transplant.

But what really grates is that your car is incompatible with two of the vital tools of my old vehicle. My new saloon refuses to accept the mounting bracket for my mobile phone, even though this fit fine in the previous model. And here’s what takes the biscuit. I bought a nice set of after market car mats for my old car, but these simply don't fit right in the new one – even though the mats were made by Mercedes!

In future I think I'll buy a Skoda.

  • 260.
  • At 02:02 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dean wrote:

It strikes me that the people exclaiming "it's the drivers stupid!" are missing the point, people shouldn't have to worry about these things. I don't care who's to blame it should all just work. I think I remember being promised "plug and play" nearly ten years ago.

One thought is that drivers becoming incompatible in new releases is one area where the open source community have it figured out - if the drivers source code had been gave to Microsoft they could have made the devices work for every future version, just like the Linux kernel people do.

Stick with XP.

Vista has no driver support by design, as with Win98, hardware vendors look upon this new OS as an opportunity to force you to buy the latest product. And this IS Microsoft's fault, as they should have INSISTED on 3rd party legacy driver's being re-written for any hardware made in the last 3 years.

My father's got Vista Home Premimum on his Dell Inspirion 9100 (bought last Autumn) and Vista goes to the Blue Screen of Death on shutdown every time. Plus it's slow and unstable, doesn't like McAfee or MS Money??

In modern parlance, Vista sucks!

  • 262.
  • At 02:11 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • nick wrote:

what is wrong with Linux???? it is free, has far more functionailty, rarely ever crashes, is always being improved and its free software tha comes as standard, is years in advance fo anything windows offers. also, it is easy to use, so long as you uses Suse, ubuntu, or the like.
microsoft takes advantage of a vast marketim to from their own clique, and by the nature of its size, it has to sell all it can to stay big. if people got rid of their intellectual lazines, the would se there are other worlds far better than what Microsoft offer.

  • 263.
  • At 02:18 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ferg wrote:

I too bought a new laptop this weekend, but chose one of the very few models that wasn't preloaded with Vista. Not because I was worried about becoming the latest beta-tester or because I feel Mac OS is far superior - I actually use both. No, much simpler than that - price.

I regulary use a feature of XP that lets me work on a remote PC (Remote Desktop). I know many others who use this feature too - in fact, it's a pretty indispensable feature for people who either work from home or travel. So, why oh why is this feature missing from the version of Vista (Home Premium) that is preloaded on all the current laptops I've seen being sold? Ah, it's in Vista Ultimate, you say. Well, how much to upgrade from Vista Home Premium to Ultimate? £189 - the same as if you went from a previous version of Windows!!

Come on Microsoft - is nobody being paid to devise suitable upgrade paths?!! I don't want to go from Win2k or XP to Vista Ultimate; I want to go from one version of Vista (that should have the feature I want, anyway) to another - that's all. The Microsoft upgrade pricing gurus are effectively saying: if you trade in your old car for this new one with a towbar, it'll cost you X. But if you've already bought the new car from us - the one we have in ALL our showrooms - and would like a towbar, it'll also cost you X.

Interesting sales proposition from Microsoft that...

Robert - is it possible to confirm if you upgraded for the fun of it or because you needed to? This would close off a few of the questions here. Though, I suppose, either way, I would still say that you needed to do a bit more research before buying your item (I do and I'm not considered technical).

  • 265.
  • At 02:23 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jeannie wrote:

My brother (hardware engineer) and nephew (software engineer) have always advised me never, never to touch a new OS until it's at least a year old. Buyers who must have the latest upgrade are always the guinea-pigs.

Hmm. Seems you are in the UK. Over here in USA we lived through this same stress on launch for Windows XP, so Application hassles are old standard noise in the bigger equation of usability that any new OS has. Vista should be thought of more as the 64bit / multicore / large data load OS with the glassy front bumper. XP at loaunch was unable to run well on low memory, so is Vista, just at at new level.

  • 267.
  • At 02:29 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

Though I completely agree with all the comments relating to drivers being the vendors responsibility I do feel Microsoft could do more to emphasise this point to the buying public, especially during the early release stages, it shouldn't just be assumed that everyone knows this! On the face of it you can't really blame people for buying a product marketed as an upgrade and expecting it to work - or maybe you can with Microsoft! Though on this particular issue if you have 'vital tools of trade' at stake it might be sensible to check your tools are certified for use by a new OS before buying it! After all, if you had a problem with a driver for a camera for example where would you go to check for updates - microsofts website, or the manufacturers?

  • 268.
  • At 02:29 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jeremy wrote:

What a wonderful and healthy debate!

O.k., so we have three (or four) camps in this debate: Macs vs. MS (XP and/or Vista) vs. Linux.

Please answer me this then:
Which OS, chip architecture, etc do I choose if I want a "home computer" that:
1. Can be bought online & is cheap (by that I mean I have been happy with Dell prices and sales and delivery in the past).
2. Software pre-installed (or at least the OS pre-installed and the rest EASY and quick to download, install and RUN - no hassles!).
3. Needs no complicated set up or instatallation.
4. Intuitive to use.
5. Works fine with my Tiscali supplied Speedtouch Broadband modem & connection, etc
6. Runs my IE7 and/or Firefox 1.5 browsers.
7. Has an EASY to use media player for playing tunes from my hard drive AND especially online live radio streaming
8. Runs MS Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Acrobat, Photoshop - all with no problems.
(No thank you - I don't want to have to learn some "open source" Office type application.)

If I answered ALL of the above spec. myself, it would currently be:
buy another Dell but stick with XP.

Prove me wrong (I hope) Mac & Linux boys & girls on:
Cost & delivery
AND ease of use
AND not having to relearn new applications
AND runs 'out of the box'.

Thank you.

  • 269.
  • At 02:41 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Kevin wrote:

Like all MS OS's before, Vista is no different. Like a Ferrari, it has beatifully slick lines outside; solid gold wheel hubs, diamond encrusted wipers, bodywork as soft and smooth as a babies skin,

and under the hood is ......

an engine from a moped. Unlike a Ferrari.

Mr. Gates, Vista may be the most expensive piece of software you've ever developed, but where was that money spent? Making it look good, I suggest. How about actually making the underlying core substantial enough to cope with any piece of 3rd party software. Yes, we can all blame 3rd party software when our system fails, but let me remind you what an OPERATING SYSTEM is meant to do. It's primary purpose is to maintain control no matter what applications may do. It's not beyond the capabilities of Microsoft to allow backwards compatibility.

How many of you Microsoft devotees would accept it if, having purchased the very latest DVD player, you find that your original DVD won't play on it. You've got to go and buy your collection all over again. The new Blu-Ray and HD-DVD player will still play your old DVDs.

But there is one thing Bill Gates is very good at. He knows how to market his products. He could sell ice cubes to an eskimos, sand to a desert nomad.

  • 270.
  • At 02:46 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stephen Miller wrote:

It is very unfair to judge the OS like this just a few days after its release.
One has to remember that the issues that you have described are nothing to do with the OS itself but rather with the 3rd party programs.

Windows has to run on a much MUCH wider variety of hardware configurations than Mac OS ever has, and to get EVERYTHING perfect upon release is not only difficult, its neigh on impossible!

3rd party developers are yet to update thier software and drivers for the new OS - is that Microsoft's fault? I think not.

  • 271.
  • At 02:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • tom wrote:

"And, just so you know, I’ve never once had a comparably horrible experience with the Google boys."

Oh, because they have a lovely...website? Yes, its very good, but hardly an operating system now is it.

I've just renewed my TV license. I'd rather have used the money upgrading my machine than paying for you to upgrade yours.

It's funny how the BBC seem bent on rubbishing the Vista release (not just this blog entry but the slant taken on the ridiculous story about the speach recognition "bug"). Last time I looked they were lead partner with Microsoft with Paul Almond demonstrating the new Media Player and the BBC having signed a partnership for developing deigital services, including a "radically re-invented" website...

  • 272.
  • At 02:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Andrews wrote:

What a world, a plain old experienced user like Robert Peston complains about gross deficiencies and errors in a much hyped new Microsoft "production" Vista operating system and a riposte from one of his readers was "you shouldn't buy it yet". Microsoft has failed miserably to test adequately or they have practiced deceit on the public by selling a "beta" version as production, or possibly both. I do believe Gates and Bulmer need to answer these kinds of seriously dreadful experiences with apologies and reparations as well as fixes. I'm bound to say however that all my experience with Microsoft is of exceedingly fussy tough and time consuming s/w that achieves little more than equivalent freeware and mostly less than Apple equivalents.

  • 273.
  • At 02:55 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Adam wrote:

Jospeh Foster writes that the only hardware you can rely on to work on a Mac is Apple hardware. I assume he probably means in the event of a major OS release.

Actually MacOS is very good with drivers, and it benefits from being a mature OS. Ok, so yes there was a difficult transition from the old MacOS to MacOS X, but this is was a serious re-write of an entire operating system on top of an *incredibly* stable kernel. Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Windows 2000, Windows XP and now Vista. Win2k and XP have the same codebase more or less. Vista is 4-5 years behind OSX. So maybe you should wait 4 years before buying it - by which time OSX (or XII or whatever) will be in a different place altogether, and thanks to Apple's approach to technology and human interface, you can guarantee it'll be simpler, friendlier and far more pleasurable to use than Vista Service Pack 6.

  • 274.
  • At 02:56 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Levi wrote:

This is ridiculous, go ahead and switch to a mac and see what happens when they upgrade something. There won't be backward compatibility. Not only that but you will probably never get an updated driver for your hardware.

I am tired of this mac loving crap. It is not even rational. And there commercials have become a little over the top.

I've not read every comment so someone may have mentioned this already about Apple, but they have a very high non-customisable user base. You don't get the multiple complcations that you do when dealing with thousands of different things that plug into a PC, both internally and externally.

The other thing to remember is that most major software makers haven't said that their software is going to work with Vista. Adobe CS2 suite for example is built for XP as is Quark.

When Apple started using OSX it had an emmulator for OS9 included. So people could use both but you couldn't install OS9 programmes on OSX. I personally feel that Microsoft is doing quite a good job of getting Vista to run with XP stuff. I've got everything I need working, well apart from any of the Epson printers but then I still XP.

If someone is upgrading don't through out your old PC just yet. you may just need it to make something work.

  • 276.
  • At 03:01 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paul Freeman-Powell wrote:

Robert,

Do you start slagging off Nokia when you get a poor signal on your mobile phone in the office? No, as it's clearly Vodafone's fault for not having a transmitter nearby.

(Random companies picked for the sake of argument.)

Or it's like complaining to BT when your £19.99 cordless phone from ASDA doesn't work.

So stop jumping on the bandwagon and attacking Microsoft - it's CLEARLY Olympus and HP which are causing the problems here. The final release of Vista has been around since about 8th November, so they've had ample chance to provide their customers with the goods.

And Apple are rubbish too - iTunes still hasn't been properly brought into the modern-day. How long does it take, people?

  • 277.
  • At 03:03 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Adam wrote:

Fletch writes:
"I've used MACS and hate them, they do nothing for me.

Just trendy "Anti-Microsoft" computer nerds who like GMail and IPods."

It's funny how people get defensive when they have something to be ashamed of.

I don't have GMail, I use OSX Mail. Does a real nice job of filtering spam without me having to configure it.

All of my PC software runs in a window on my Mac (Parallels) - anything that needs graphics intensive stuff is on a Boot Camp partition. And Microsoft's Office for Mac is actually better than Office on Vista (which is just losing the plot).

Ironically, my iTunes library is on my seperate laptop PC.

Funny world. Pick your colour.

  • 278.
  • At 03:06 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Lawrence Challen wrote:

As soon as it was announced that linux was able to run a certain mmorpg it sold it to me. Vista sucks, Linux may not be perfect but it is free and (once set up) is rock solid, with lots of frequent updates.

  • 279.
  • At 03:13 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paul wrote:

I bought a new laptop before Christmas that came with XP. I've sent off the necessary to upgrade to Vista but I don't care when they finally ship the order (and it's not costing anything anyway). I only stick with Windows because of gaming. My home network server and office apps are run on Linux. Install Fedora Core 6 and watch your Vista woes disappear in 20 minutes ... although you may wonder why you paid for a Windows license in the first place :S

  • 280.
  • At 03:18 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Steven wrote:

You may wish to give PC-BSD a try, user friendly, easy to update and maintain and DRM free.

  • 281.
  • At 03:21 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

The problem is deeper than Microsoft.

You would have no problems if the conduit between devices was standard. As an example, plug in a USB stick. Unless it was an early generation USB memory device it won't need drivers.

That's because, unlike the early years, where they differentiated each other by doing propriatory stuff, they decided the cost of keeping up wasn't worth it and just worked to an open standard: USB mass storage.

If this would be too limiting, if the source code were available and you could compile it, you may be able to find someone who could find and fix the problem.

Unfortunately, though there isn't any real downside for the manufacturer (unless you are forced to buy new kit), all the upsides are really for you, the customer. And, frankly, that doesn't help their bottom line this quater.

  • 282.
  • At 03:27 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jennie Rigg wrote:

Mate, you need Linux. Yes, you will have the same issues that BOTH Mac and Microsoft users have with upgrades, but with two important distinctions: it's free, and you have the best tech support in the world (a team of millions of dedicated geeks that Microsoft would kill to get into the brains of).

I can't understand why ANYONE pays for things which are available free and open-source.

Get yourself a nice, stable, easy user interface like Ubuntu and you'll never look back.

  • 283.
  • At 03:28 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mark wrote:

Regarding ascribing to Olympus the problem with support. To an extenr, true. However, Olympus doesn't support Linux.

Yet I can use my Olympus camera in GIMP fine. Even RAW.

There are many other products that work with Linux *despite* (not because) of help from the manufacturers.

  • 284.
  • At 04:09 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andrew Martin wrote:

Robert followed up with...

"Gosh, it turns out from most of your responses that it's my fault that my previous laptop has collapsed and that what Microsoft touts as the answer to all my computing prayers can't actually do the most basic things I require of it. Stupid me"

It's not your fault that it all went wrong, but you do have some responsibility when it comes to buying a brand new, just released product by a company that (and I'm guessing from your tone) you don't entirely trust anyway.

This is what happens to early adopters. The smart money goes with xp on a new laptop and asks for a vista upgrade coupon.

Stupid no, naive possibly

  • 285.
  • At 04:15 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tim wrote:

Listen, anything microsoft and new is full of bugs and whizzy functionality that hardly anyone needs at the expense of the reliability that everyone needs. Yes I like the idea of a Mac too, but they sadly won't run the software I need to use. I'm still having to use win2000 pro. Even with XP I have never understood why the basic office packages are less reliable than ten years ago, take longer to do the same tasks even on a much faster machine, and take 10 times the ram. Call this progress ?!

  • 286.
  • At 04:19 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sandra Browne wrote:

Poor old Robert, I guess you never expected to get such a torrent of responses to your Open Letter, huh?
It always made me laugh when so many supposedly wise and knowledgeable commentators would pronounce the operating system wars were over, that Windows had won, and it was all just a replay of the VHS vs Betamax format war. If only operating systems were just as static as a video tape format, and they never changed or added anything... well, we could all just get on with our day, do our work, have fun. However, computer operating systems are not and never were anything like a static format. We get better hardware, better software, and tons of new ideas all the time. Is it any wonder that we appreciate newer and more useful operating systems? It seems to me that Microsoft have got themselves into an invidious position. After using all the dodgy business practices they were later found to have used, nearly everyone has ended up using their products. Perhaps this encouraged them to grow fat and lazy, perhaps not. However, one thing is very clear, and even their most ardent fan has to admit, they lost their way very badly in trying to develop a new operating system... the so-called Longhorn project that has ended up as Vista. In the end they have had only 18 months to 2 years, after going back to the drawing board, to bring out the new Vista flagship. It really doesn't surprise me that it is less than satisfactory for many people, such as yourself. I can only agree with many of the others who have posted on here, that this is a good time to look around and se what else is on offer. Comparing the "VHS/Betamax" equivalents of Windows and the other operating systems that were around a decade ago is to neglect the fact that sometimes we just find ourselves in an entirely new ballpark. Notice, this holds true in the good old video format wars arena... none of them are being used now,and we have a host of new and exciting technologies to enjoy. Personally it seems to me that too many people feel they just have to stick with Microsoft products for whatever purpose. Maybe they don't realise that the days of file compatibility problems are long gone. Perhaps they don't realise that maybe 90% or 95% of the documents created every day in Office (be they Word, Ecxel or Powerpoint) could just as easily be created in simpler, cheaper, or even free programs. Very few people actually need the power of Office in their everyday work. However, old habits do die hard as they say. Good luck with your new computer. Sounds like you will be investing lots of time in to it in the future

  • 287.
  • At 04:22 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Bob wrote:

To the people saying "you upgraded without due diligence"... or stating that staying with XP may be a better option for the next few ( days | weeks | months ) until everything is ready for Vista..

what happens if you need to buy a new machine this week? Re-format it to get rid of the bundled Vista and put XP back on it ?

  • 288.
  • At 04:29 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Alan wrote:

My simple rule after years of mistakes is, never upgrade the PC operating system. Wait to buy a new computer. From Windows 3.0 to 95, 95 to 98, 98 to 98SE -- every time, problems. I won't buy the Vista upgrade under any circumstances, but I may get a new Vista-based computer.

However, if MAC users want to pretend this doesn't happen on their end, they are in denial. My wife is a photographer and entirely MACed out, and when she upgraded her software many of her peripherals ceased to function until we could locate and install driver patches. Scanner, card dock, printer, back up drive -- just a confusing mess. One tech support person had to talk me through a delte process that brought me to five places on the MAC to remove software, files, and drivers.

Upgrading is often fraught with challenges because of the vast array of devices and opportunities for conflcts. MAC is superior in many respects, but in my experience, not in this one.

  • 289.
  • At 04:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • ChrisC wrote:

What a pointless waste of a post. All you have done is displayed your ignorance of the tools that you claim to use everyday in your work, and stir up the OS nazis as well.

Anybody in their right mind would look at Vista with a healthy amount of skepticism. Performance comparisons have shown that it is slower for games and video encoding - and if XP does what you want, why change immediately? And if your vendor won't ship a machine without Vista - find one that will.

You are not being forced into using Vista.

  • 290.
  • At 04:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • malcopop wrote:

Macs are not so great, my ibook has broken down. A recent Which survey said that if you look at reliability and value for money you are better buying a Dell, and yet the same survey said that more mac owners would ancourage their friends to buy macs than dell owners tell their friends to buy dells.

Yes the switch to mac was liberating, but the novelty wore off after 6 months.

But yeah, vista, I would wait at least 18 months before even thiking about it.

In a business where software gets outdated every 9 months or so the largest software company in the world took 6 years to bring an update to their OS.

Isn't something a little obvious here? It seems to me that Windows is still draging around its last 15 years of code.

Apple decided several years ago to dump the old code base and build on top of Unix. OSX now benefits from building on an operating system that has proven robust for decades.

As Mac users, we just fire it up and use it, hour after hour, day after day. There is little or no housekeeping needed to keep things running - it's productive.

MS apps on the Mac are some of the worst products... Apple's IWork programs read and write Word & Power Point so that problem is solved.

It is just more productive to use a computer than spend your time fixing it, securing it and waiting for upgrades that work.

Maybe Vista will bring in that era of security and productivity but there are a lot of signs of trouble.

If you have to wait for version 1.1 after waiting 6 years for 1.0, this from the richest company in the industry, than something smells.

Computers are suposed to be productive. The era of spending endless hours trying to get software to work is ending... use whatever you like but don't put up with endless updates and fixes when there is a better way.

  • 292.
  • At 04:44 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • DaveF wrote:

I think Robert knows now that his problems relate to the lack of drivers from Olympus and H-P. I worked for a firm that made products that needed drivers for Windows, and Microsoft's certification process took a couple of weeks. That ensured that the company would have its drivers on the Windows CD. If not, users could still get the drivers from the company's web site, or the CD that came with the product.

I notice that no one who says "Get a Mac!" will give you any assurance that when the next version of OS X comes out that all the drivers will be present.

One driver that won't be there will be a Mac driver for nVidia's 8800 video card. The card may be the next generation of video, faster than anything ATI produces, and uses the same card slot as the Mac. nVidia says that the only way you'll get a driver is if Apple writes one.

But even if you go to a Mac and enjoy what you can of the computer industry's offerings, with the anti-malware promise of "No one writes malware for the Mac, let's hope it stays that way," we'll see you back on the PC in a few years. If Steve Jobs says that half of Mac buyers are new to the Mac, then the other half aren't enough to cover Mac users upgrading.

But good luck with Vista - when you have these problems resolved then you'll start enjoying the new features.

  • 293.
  • At 04:48 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Joe wrote:

Hey Mel!

Interesting comment about blaming the driver makers. However...I'm using the latest Mac OSX and the drivers for the Olympus work on my OS X...and my 4 year old iMac G4. If I had one of the new iNTEL Macs, I'm sure that the HP would also work.

Don't need a new computer to run this stuff. Plug it in and it just works!

  • 294.
  • At 04:51 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Nikolaus Heger wrote:

I tried to switch to Vista on my laptop. I am a gadget geek and was hopeful that Vista would be closer to OS X... I tried it about 3 times now, and each time I rebooted back into XP in disgust.

Vista's main problem is that it doesn't stay out of the way. All my hardware worked out of the box but there is a constant barrage of dialog boxes for anything and everything. Worse, Vista's dialog boxes are huge and filled with paragraphs of prose - and you, the user, need to read all of it to make the correct decision.

I would much rather get some work done, however, so I stick with XP, I am evaluating ubuntu linux and I am saving for a Mac. Thanks, Vista!

  • 295.
  • At 04:51 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dylan Green wrote:

Hi Robert,

Have you downloaded the released version of Windows Mobile Device Centre. I have an iPaq (6515) and having installed that everything springs into life. The docs say that it supports all WM devices (HP and others) from 2003 onwards so, depending on how old your iPaq is, it may work for you.

The URL is http://www.microsoft.com/windowsmobile/devicecenter.mspx

The software was released in the last few days (it's been beta for a while).

Dylan.

  • 296.
  • At 05:04 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Awrata wrote:

Microsoft has always been good at creating a lot of hype around their products and managed to send its flawed early versions of its products flying off the shelves.

Sometimes, its efforts to do this verge on the ridiculous. Over here (in Malta) students of all ages, Government employees, teachers and the elderly were given an opportunity to purchase a pack containing full versions of Vista Ultimate and Office 2007 for the equivalent of £50! Around 10% of the entire Maltese population had access to the offer.

Obviously, I signed up for the offer, but on reading all the reports about Vista being half-baked, and the issue with DRM being built into the kernel of the OS, I doubt I will ever upgrade my machine.

  • 297.
  • At 05:08 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tony wrote:

Ithought very quick my PC is coming up for 4 years, I can't face another 4 years with Microsoft, I am getting a MAC but certainly not from Tescos!

  • 298.
  • At 05:09 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Anthony Dunning wrote:

For different manufacturers' IT and telecomms devices to interwork they must conform with international standards. This is so obvious that it would normally be assumed that it doesn't require repetition.
But it clearly does.
International standards bodies define these standards through technical committees on which industry specialists sit.
Ever since MS has existed, it has consistently refused to play according to the rules. Its products rarely conform with international standards and it doesn't make its source code available to potential competitors. Its goal is monopoly.

I have found Windows Vista to be very easy to transfer, and with a few small tweaks, easy to manage. Try http://www.windowsvistamagazine.co.uk where there's lots of tips on this sort of thing.

  • 300.
  • At 05:20 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jackson Powell wrote:

Windows: Buy major revision only when you need a new computer for your needs-get the new OS at the cut-rate OEM price. Never upgrade, unless it's to SP1 or SP2. History: Windows 95 (Windows 4.0) was the fix for Windows 3.0; Windows 98 was the fix for Windows 95; Windows ME was just a mistake, just another Redmond won't admit to; Windows 98SE was the fix; Windows XP mated Windows 2000 with DOS-based consumer line, a serious improvement; SP1 made it real; SP2 was critical for the remarkably flawed code base of DOS, security holes aplenty.

Vista aims to do two things: improve security (a fix for XP) and improve the UI, i.e., compete with Apple OS X. It, as with all Windows changes, also seeks to promote Microsoft's attempt to control everything. Same business model: dirt cheap to OEM, expensive in retail box. When it's ready, just buy new computer to get Vista.

General: Don't upgrade OS until you know you'll have the drivers, from whatever source. Don't buy peripherals unless you know you have the drivers first. This applies equally to Windows and OS X.

Truth about Microsoft:
With Vista, Redmond hopes to close the gap with OS X. It does. Yet the same problems linger--security, security, security. Frankly Redmond does not have the guts to create a new OS, so instead it takes the tens of millions of lines of code and cracks it's employees brains to fix and improve them. It was a nightmare. Hey, but it's shipping. If they'd waited till most things were right, it'd be another five years. If you're truly attached to their OS, you should know the drill. Get your wallet ready.

Up next: The Truth About Apple

  • 301.
  • At 05:24 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andy wrote:

Robert, why do you persist in childish name-calling towards those of us who have the good sense to use a computer system that actually works ?

Maybe you spend too much time hanging out with small minded, ill-informed people like poster #87 ?

Well, good luck fixing your laptop. I'm off to do some pretentious work on my (problem free) Mac

  • 302.
  • At 05:25 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Howard Graff wrote:

Get a Mac and I'm not a nerd! I am a CA and management consultant and I have a computer science degree. I have to use PCs at work, but when I can, and always at home, I use a Mac. A Mac generally works like a fridge works -just like any other appliance - open it up and it works. "Crash" is not a word that OS X understands, at least not in my experience. MS Office is available for Macs and it works like it does on a PC or better. Safari browser is just wonderful and if you want Firefox instead, there is a full Mac version.

The big deal is that Macs don't get viruses or spyware and all the peripherals that I use just plug in and work instantly - no flashing lights and long waits like when Windose tries to recognise / remember a peripheral that has been plugged in twenty times before...and then hangs - like my Olympus dictaphone does when connecting to my PC at work.

Macs need wider adoption, and then the software for serious work would be cross-compiled or re-written to run on them. (The software houses need the market to be there before they spend the £££ developing the software.) Or they need Apple to pump prime them with money. (Are you listening Steve?)

Be happy. Get a Mac :-)

  • 303.
  • At 05:27 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • james hancox wrote:

i just bought a new SONY VAIO TX3 laptop, and stupidly upgraded to Vista. no compatibility issues... just runs like a dog. the laptop says it's vista capable, but the RAM and CPU just cannot cope. MS shouldn't have allowed SONY to put the sticker on the front.

I use XP and Media Center on my desktops... won't change until SP1 comes out.

  • 304.
  • At 05:28 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • George wrote:

"... Any non technical person buying Vista as an upgrade is asking for trouble. Wait until SOME of the bugs have been fixed, i.e when service pack 1 has been released ..."

As a "technical" person, I say "anyone" upgrading to Vista is asking for trouble. Period.

My advice on when to upgrade to Vista is ...

... When Hell freezes over!

Why would any sane, rational person spend the kind of money, you need to spend to get Vista, on a product that is known to be broken?

George

P.S.
Want to buy a car? You say the breaks don't work? Wait for next years model. We'll have a fix by then.

Until then? Just drive slow and don't stop!

  • 305.
  • At 05:36 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dave wrote:

@Mel & @Greig

Hahaha! Remind me to tell that to the Windows zealots when there's a Linux discussion and they bring out the "driver argument".

  • 306.
  • At 05:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Dev wrote:

I agree with the individual that cited Ubuntu above. It is probably the most user-friendly linux distro I have ever used. Now on to the fun stuff. I have a MS in Computer Science and have worked with both the Mac and Windows OS's and want to point a few things out. 1) As a repeat from above, your devices do not work because your vendor's dropped the ball. There's no elaboration needed here, see other posts. 2) The reason windows will stay ahead of the mac is partially because of game developer support. Last I checked, this is a huge market and the mac really does not have much going for it. 3) The undertaking Microsoft went through to develop Vista was quite impressive indeed and I would expect issues to arise when you have that many lines of code working behind your system. They will simply fix the most important ones and move on. But I do agree with an earlier post, wait a bit for the issues to be worked out. Give it a few months. 4) You do not need to upgrade to Vista nor move to a Mac immediately. Microsoft will support XP for years to come, so why spend the money? 5) As for the virus arguement with Windows vs Macs: Most script-kitties who write these have a windows PC lying around to play with and not a Mac because of the marketshare Window's has. If the Mac was the leader, I guarantee you would see more virus's and malware. No system is fool-proof as sloppy code exists in all systems, especially those as complex and a Mac or Windows PC uses. As for the comment that computers are supposed to be smart and just work...re-read that and consider what you are saying. A computer is only as 'intelligent' as its creators allow it to be and Mac and Windows developers cross the lines quite often.

  • 307.
  • At 05:50 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • idosedthekoolaid wrote:

Try Ubuntu Linux!!!!!!

  • 308.
  • At 05:52 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • bob wrote:

I bought a laptop from Emporer Linux with the Fedora 4 version of Linux. Unlike windows, everything just worked and continued to work. Several months later, I upgraded the operating system to Fedora 5. Unlike windows, everything just worked and continued to work. Six months later, I upgraded to Fedora 6. Unlike windows, every just worked and continued to work. In a couple of months I expect to upgrade to Fedora 7. And I expect everything will work and will continue to work.

Anyone who used windows for any kind of work they care about is just not paying attention. One of my children won't upgrade to Linux because he is heavily into some kind of interactive online game. Is there any other reason to stick with windows? I mean other than the virus, malware, spyware part of the experience?

Bob.

  • 309.
  • At 05:53 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • tz wrote:

Some of the commenters didn't read that it wasn't an upgrade, it was a NEW laptop (at least all the intra-laptop hardware worked).

Vista is still Windows NT at its core so there is no real reason that the NT/2000/2003/XP drivers shouldn't work - except for Microsoft itself doing strange and probably unnecessary things (maybe related to DRM or other content protection). Your Olympus might contain copyrighted stuff, and your iPaq, you need a signed, certified, cryptographic driver.

See what Microsoft (I don't think Gates is still chairman or whatever) got for $8 billion in development? Eye-candy and compatibility problems. But it will insure that both Vista and your Hi-Def disc can't be pirated. It may not run/play at all either, but the copy protection is very strong.

Linux from 2.4 to 2.6 hasn't changed that much, nor has anything from the earliest Mac OS X (9 was a different OS from X). Unless the uptake on Vista is far faster than I imagine, there are more Mac and Linux users combined - so shouldn't the vendors have drivers for them first if they don't already exist?

It seems the other attitude is that no matter what Microsoft does to break things, it is the Vendor's responsibility to make sure it is fixed before they even get a release copy. And make sure it works with every permutation of other driver and hardware under the new software.

But turn that around and it seems no one cares that web pages only look good or work at all in IE. (I don't use IE and haven't noticed problems with Firefox or Safari except for some rare javascript weirdness).

The general rule is also not to wait for the FIRST service pack but the second, as the first will break a lot of things and SP2 will remove the breakage while keeping the fixes.

  • 310.
  • At 06:00 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • sean wrote:

for your PDA you need to download Windows Mobile Device Center 6 for Windows Vista

  • 311.
  • At 06:29 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Neil wrote:

This is really not meant to be a complaint one way or the other, for or against any one particular OS over that of another, but rather, an observation over time I've come to realize about operating systems in general. I, like millions of others out there in computer-land, have known the many, many iterations and development cycles of operating systems to much of our chagrin while painstakingly trying to work through the many obstacles of getting our machines to perform to our liking during those often dreaded cycles of OS upgrades. Oh yes, we've all known the depth of despair of recognizing our limits in the face of sometimes trying to solve one of these more complex computer hardware/software issues during the OS upgrade process. That aside, I simply wish here to propose yet another tact we might consider taking along the long and winding road of computer operating system developmental cycles: that of "socializing" the OS itself much like the Linux world has done. I have often felt that an OS such as the Windows platform with its immense distribution worldwide is far too important to allow any one entity or company the sole responsibility of being the gatekeeper for said OS. To me, it would be similar in scope to allowing the English language itself to be maintained and kept by a solitary entity and at the same time it's development and implementation into society at large also the sole responsibility of that same entity. Imagine one whole culture that was completely and utterly dependent upon the English language for its daily survival, suddenly told by this entity, that it was going to scrap the entire vernacular of a society for what it felt to be a newer much improved one, without so much as preparing its people for the shock of consequences it would inevitably bring to their daily lives and functioning. All normal functioning and interfacing to that language would now be turned upside down in favor of a new much more improved language. My point is simple: I just think, feel and sense in my bones that something as uniquely manifold in the world as an operating system should somehow be under the guidance and protection of the people whom it serves. Now what model that that guidance and protection of an OS should take is not yet clear in my mind, perhaps somewhere between the Linux open source model and the Microsoft model there might exist yet another model which could adequately address and allay our fears of constantly having to go through so much pain whilst dancing merrily down the yellow-bricked road to OZ. But again, the path might just be frothed with dangers of bad witches anyway and no amount of Todo's exposing benevolent wizards behind curtains would do justice in the end. Maybe we're left in the end with simply believing that by merely kicking our heals together we can make it all good again. I know, I’m another dreamer.

  • 312.
  • At 06:35 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • e.p. wrote:

An open letter to Mr. Peston-

1) My digital camera works just fine. I can't speak for your Olympus, but a quality camera like my Cannon will work over Firewire without a driver. And yes, it works perfectly in Vista. Your camera, if it is indeed newish, should use Firewire or USB 2.0 and require no drivers to just transfer media. Microsoft is not responsible for the FIRMWARE/DRIVERS of your hardware, and not responsible for additional software you purchase. That is the responsibility of the vendor.

2) Typing the words "ipaq vista" into Google reveals an interesting result... the second link will tell you how to fix it.

The sad thing about it is, the easier Microsoft makes software the stupider users become. And the more they complain. Why don't you go buy a mac, the 'pretentious Fischer-price toy for adults'

sincerely,
e.p.

  • 313.
  • At 06:46 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Sven wrote:

As I only visit political forums and online news sites, Windows 95 works fine for me.

Sven

  • 314.
  • At 06:48 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Paris Sinclair wrote:

I only buy Olympus digicams because they use standard interfaces and work on linux/unix with standard USB "mass storage" drivers. So no special driver is needed. It simply shows up as a USB disk, allowing me to access the images directly.

So to hear that an Olympus cam doesn't work with MS Windows Vista is particularly amusing to me.

Windows: Not quite ready for the desktop.

  • 315.
  • At 06:57 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Neil wrote:

A lot of the 'new' things available on vista have been around for about a year on the mac.

Yes this is another smug mac owner saying 'get a mac' and simplify your life. We are smug for a reason, Apple make the hardware and software, so can tailor all products to run as smoothly as possible, not exactly rocket science is it?

And I'm not bashing Microsoft either, they make some great products, their office software is brilliant and is currently installed on my 2 macs, and they also make...........great........office software, don't they!!

So to all you new vista users, good luck and you never know by 2009, it should work just great.

  • 316.
  • At 06:59 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • akhosla wrote:

Lest you forget linux.
It works as good as mac and costs nothing (as compared to windows or mac) and can be installed on most of the laptops and if one can google one can get help on anything for it.

  • 317.
  • At 07:03 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Saby wrote:

This conversation is going nowhere. I am an ardent fan of both Microsoft and Apple products and cannot imagine a world without them.... when it comes to Vista I would say give it sometime to evolve before you install it. This should be the case if you are just a regular user, know nothing much about computers, should be able to install some software you use frequently for work or home..... also give some more time for the rest of the software world to cope up with this upgrade, it is nothing unnatural and happens always. An OS is too sophisticated to be built to keep in mind installation of every goddamned software in the world.. the software has to upgrade to the parent OS. If they fail to do so it does not mean that you should hate Vista for the sake of other software you have that does not comply... if you want to stick to an older OS that your software are already upgraded to install and run nicely on you are most welcome to do it.. go for any older Windows or the MAC..don't blame Vista for your stupidity.

  • 318.
  • At 07:07 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • sunil wrote:

Mr. Peston,
I've had similar problems in the past but the reason I still stick by Windows is that Microsoft is the only company that has the capability to fix things up quickly and get things working great at the earliest.

Being a engineer myself I have tried my hand at most other operating systems (like Linux, Mac OS X ) and take my word that life is much better with Windows. We hear a lot of complains with Windows simply because 95 percent of the world uses this OS.

As another user commented here .. comparision between Google products and windows is like comparing a home boiler with a nuclear reactor. Also you would want to look at the website of your product's ( camera and printer) makers. They might have released some driver updates.

HTH.

  • 319.
  • At 07:08 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jos Sebastian wrote:

Either use Mac or if you want low cost (Free), use Linux.

Among Linux, Ubuntu is stable, but not necessarily bleeding edge. If you want bleeding edge and stable, go for OpenSuse. In fact I recommend OpenSuse. It had graphics with advanced XGL/AIGLX better than Mac and far better than Vista, which requires a few years to reach that level. It is not just eye-candy, but you can get work done with these and they are free. Installation is smoother than Vista. Someone earlier mentioned that lack of drivers is Vista's issue. Linux had that issue earlier. Now pretty much all drivers are available.

I have been using Linux for more than a decade and Windows from its early days (DOS) and Mac for a few weeks. I go with Linux.

  • 320.
  • At 07:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Fabindo Levish wrote:


Windows XP is barely functional after 2 Service Packs. Still stalls and hangs all the time. From an engineering perspective it is a complete piece of crap, really hobbyware in quality.

Anyone expecting Vista to do anything competently has outsized expectations bordering on the demented.

F

  • 321.
  • At 07:36 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Stephen Norton wrote:

Blaming third party vendors for not having drivers ready to 'keep up' with Microsoft's operating system upgrade reinforces the idea that Windows is the only game in town - just like the BBC seems to be doing.

This helps only one group - Microsoft - to the detriment of these third parties and, more importantly, the end customer (who, after all and when all's said and done, is paying for these problems and has been paying the wages of all these Microsoft billionaires for the last 30 years earning - as far as I can see - only the contempt that conmen have for their victims).

Perhaps these suppliers should now consider going down the VMC route which enables their drivers to be operating system independent (to the software experts out there, is this possible?). I know this may not allow you to use the very latest functionality of the operating system you choose but, given that all of these peripheral components use relatively simple functionality on the computer, is this really important?

After all, a half full basket is better than an empty one.


Stevieboy

  • 322.
  • At 07:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tim wrote:

I've been a Mac user from day one since I was first introduced to the computer world by a Mac user. I've enjoyed it quite a bit even enjoyed the "war" between Mac fans and Window fans. I've encountered a few problems with upgrades but nothing major. I've even used Windows when I worked for a software company. It is all about choice which we all have. When we chose to buy a product from someone it's best to do research and check the history of that company and their products. I just prefer Macs because of their day to day ease of use. I'm not a techie nor a gamer. All my gamer friends love Windows and probably for good reasons. Not being one I couldn't care less than I do. I'll stick with my Mac until Msoft convinces me to change.

  • 323.
  • At 07:38 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • solomonrex wrote:

There's no reason to buy Windows PCs anymore. All the good software is online.

About the "oh, it's HP's fault for drivers" etc. folks:
1. People shouldn't know what a driver is to make things work. Apple understands this.
2. How are drivers breaking on what is essentially XP SP3?
3. Remember the Windows key? MS can pretty much spell out what "partners" should do with Windows-compatible hardware. But they only do that when it makes them money.

As for not buying Vista laptops until sp1? They don't sell XP laptops! That's the point! No one would buy Vista if MS didn't force us to! They would make MS sell XP, like corporations are going to do for the next 3-5 years.

It's 2007, we have usb, wifi, rss, html and x86 formats. There's no excuse for things not working together, but this always happens with MS products. They need to protect their monopoly by creating an excuse for their hardware partners to sell faster computers that take longer and longer to load Word each year.

At this point, they are a public utility and need to be regulated like one. The electricity wasted by this artificial upgrade cycle is a significant cost.

  • 324.
  • At 07:46 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Latch wrote:

Everyone is saying "wait for SP1", which is why MS is already both working AND talking about SP1. They'd like SP1 out next week so that everyone will then feel it's safe to run Vista. It won't be, of course, but perception is reality.

  • 325.
  • At 07:50 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • rod barkley wrote:

As a long time Mac user, unwilling to throw away hours trying to install software, I empathize with the plight of PC users everywhere. Let's face it, the PC is second rate. Unless Apple buys out Microsoft, you're never going to catch up.

Run, don't walk, to an Apple store and join the future.

(If you have a boat, your PC will make a great anchor.)

  • 326.
  • At 07:51 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Jim McKenzie wrote:

So absolutely typical of all the self-styled uber-geeks and Windows apologists to blame the user.

If you didn't know that you should never believe MS adverts and just go out and buy Vista and try and upgrade to it, you are stupid. If you did not know that you must research the compatibility of all your peripherals then you are stupid. MS bears no responsibility in this at all. This is rubbish!

To the millions of computer users who fight daily with MS programs ...

- You Are Not Stupid.

The people who designed these user-unfriendly abominations are. They are bad software designers.

The Mac OS is better designed from a user interface standpoint, although certainly not perfect, but for the average person who has no interest in learning how to edit their registry, a far better and far more usable option. Geeks who like to hack away at their machines can stick with Windows. (Although true alpha-geeks use Unix - either Linux or Unix on the Mac)

Please, computer users, don't listen to geeks telling you that you are stupid because you can't understand how to use their hacked together, not ready for prime-time operating system,.

  • 327.
  • At 07:55 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • rod wrote:

As a long time Mac user, unwilling to throw away hours trying to install software, I empathize with the plight of PC users everywhere. Let's face it, the PC is second rate. Unless Apple buys out Microsoft, you're never going to catch up.

Run, don't walk, to an Apple store and join the future.

(If you have a boat, your PC will make a great anchor.)

  • 328.
  • At 07:57 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John wrote:

For those saying it's the vendors fault for not having drivers: Microsoft couldn't get's it's own Zune player to work with Vista until AFTER it shipped. How are hardware vendors without all of MS' expertise supposed to have drivers ready? Yes, it is entirely Microsoft's fault that there is little driver support.
Also, Microsoft are being very disingenuous in their advertising. All you hear about is "wow". They don't mention that not all hardware is supported yet. Nor to they mention that you need a high end machine for that "wow" factor: e.g. Aero. For the average user, all they hear is that Vista is everything they ever wanted, and all they need to do is buy it.

Try Linux, It's free.
See if yours is compatible here:
http://www.linux-laptop.net/

  • 329.
  • At 07:58 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • AlbertG wrote:

Robert: Vista is about _money_, pure and simple. Micro$oft's monopoly has enabled it to release buggy software and charge whatever they want for it. I love the advice "wait for the 1st service pack". XP's 1st service pack was a disaster. Thing is, monopolies breed arrogance. Apple tries harder, but Linux developers really care. When I had trouble with Reiser File System on my Linux machine (turned out to be hardware), those guys replied the next day!
Too bad, because of my work, I still need Windows...

It's a bit depressing that a business editor thinks it's cool to trash a commercial product when it does not work exactly the way they expected.
At best, your complaint is a criticism of the way the whole IT industry works. The industry values innovation at the expense of simplicity. If you don't like it, keep the old PC and don't connect it to the internet. It will work just fine.

  • 331.
  • At 08:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David wrote:

The advent of Vista is indeed an opportunity to consider other operating systems. If you're not at all willing to buy new equipment, just download Ubuntu Linux or order their free CD if you don't have high speed internet. Installation is easy - intended for non-techies.

Then again, it's hard to go wrong with a Mac. Many of my co-workers are on their 3rd Dell in the period since I bought my G4 Powerbook. Not a bad TCO, relatively speaking, especially when you consider that my PBG4 actually runs FASTER with each new version of OS X. Crossover Mac allows you to run Windows software if necessary without having to install Windows. Parallels for Mac gives you the ability to run multiple operating systems simultaneously. The risk involved in platform migration is lower than ever before.

As mentioned earlier, though, Microsoft is a good Mac software developer. Although they're far from perfect, they've come a long, long way from the dark days of Office 6.

  • 332.
  • At 08:28 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • David Cull wrote:

>Combine the might of Ubuntu, Mac look and feel and Windows reach and I would be heaven ! :)

You just might want to check out a well tested, object oriented, data centric, virus free system.
Yes, its still with us.
go to:
http://www.ecomstation.com/
and download a demo CD. (Boots from disc, so there's no worries about cluttering your hard drive)
btw
I just downloaded 'Lucide', a replacement for Acrobat PDF reader that has plugin modules for other formats.
And OpenOffice.org 2.0.4 for eComStation and OS/2 has reached RC1 stage and is now available.

Works for me!

  • 333.
  • At 08:44 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Andy wrote:

I honestly believe people should have to be licensed before they can own a computer, just like cars...

  • 334.
  • At 08:49 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Ollie wrote:

MAKE THE SWITCH TO MAC!!!!!! They are much better than most of the time more powerful!! Better for all the general public, however Microsoft is a safe haven for computer lovers so knock them off the top!!!!!!!

  • 335.
  • At 09:08 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Tony Pott wrote:

Well Robert, you've just learned the most important lesson of all when it comes to technology: 'If it ain't broke, don't fix it'.

Software doesn't wear out, and, lacking any compelling reason to change, you shouldn't. Just apply patches.

I won't advocate another OS, though I'm a Linux user myself, but I will observe that Linux distributions (and lately Apple) avoid doing what MS have just done: attempting a 'Big Bang' upgrade.

From a marketing perspective it's attractive to have a wholly new product, but from a technological standpoint, 'small, incremental, changes, happening often', has proved to be the most effective approach to marry progress with stability.

This may prove to be a model that MS cannot easily adopt. Persistent, but credible, rumour has it that MS OS architecture is so monolithic and entangled that it is simply impractical to attempt incremental change.

  • 336.
  • At 09:12 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Greg Norman wrote:

I got Vista last weekend as well & I must say I am surprisingly happy about it. I had no illusions that it would be a pleasant experience having suffered previous Windows OS but it was & I really like it. Everything was were I expected it to be so the learning curve was painless. I did have one compatability issue that resulted in the overdue replacement of an old LCD monitor that I did not like anyway. Other than that it went very well. This is the first Microsoft product I have liked since Windows 3.1.1 so for once I can say well done to BG.

  • 337.
  • At 09:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Simone wrote:

Ah, the Emporers New Clothes!!

Well after 15 years of Messing About, Consider an alternative (clue look at the Capitals).

  • 338.
  • At 09:32 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Lisa wrote:

If nothing else it goes to show that even after 15 years as a consumer some people are not aware of what they are buying.

Firstly - What advice did the sales person give (any decent IT technician would not advise vista as yet)

Secondly - Check before you buy or upgrade surely after 15 years of going through Win 95 to XP Pro you would have learnt.

Thirdly - Before you bemoan microsoft check what programme you are currently reading this in (if you use linux OS or alternatives good on you alteast you have the right to complain because you know the difference)

All said and done do the research first other wise you could end up putting unleaded into a diesel car!

  • 339.
  • At 10:30 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Casi wrote:

"It's all very well saying 'Get a Mac' as if everything will be fine and dandy thereafter - but I have encountered endless problems with Macs, the latest being that the new ones with Intel do not like Microsoft Office applications (like Word). I am on my fourth replacement MacBook at the moment and the battery has just died on this one. So not perfect... but still better than Microsoft."

This is because office is still running through rosetta, and Microsoft is taking forever to release a new version of it for mac... Office still doesn't run naitivly through Intel... thats why it's goin slow...

  • 340.
  • At 10:32 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Neil Davis wrote:

Its always been the same. When the Windows errors out and you report it you get invited to join the beta test. When will Microsoft stop treating customers as free test resource and spend the money to do the job themselves.

  • 341.
  • At 10:34 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Adrian Flanagan wrote:

Actually, that's just the tip of the iceberg of Vista's problems. The technically inclined should take a look at A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection, which is a paper on the DRM scheme built into Vista. This is a cradle-to-grave content protection scheme that puts enormous amounts of your computer power to preventing you from copying data on your computer. Somehow Microsoft decided this is a good idea.

Vista doesn't allow existing programs to display their help files!

Microsoft said they would fix it in time for the consumer release of Vista, but they haven't!

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/917607

How can we use our existing programs on the new Vista if their help files don't work?

  • 343.
  • At 10:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • lantzn wrote:

Fletch,
You've obviously have not used a Mac in a very, very long time. The current Macs can run all your existing Windows software natively on XP (Boot Camp) or virtually using a program called Parallels. So Mac give you more options then a PC now.
As far as websites go, Safari browser is one of the most web standards compliant browser out there, followed by Firefox, others and then finally IE6. It wasn't until IE7 that MS released something close to the others. Try running IE6 and under threw the Acid2 Test and then try it with your beloved Windows browser. If web page designers would stop creating non-standards complient websites or using Windows only technology in their sites then those websites you speak of would allow all browsers to view them properly.

http://www.webstandards.org/action/acid2/

  • 344.
  • At 10:40 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • alan smith wrote:

To say that Mac users are ignorant of computer ways is the real arrogance of Windows users.

Robert, let me make this simple.
1. Sell your Vista machine.
2. Buy a Mac.
3. Use all your favorite software and then some (iDVd, iMovie).
4. For games, you can boot into XP.
5. For switching back to XP and Mac Os X, get Parallels.
6. Be happy and productive.

Cheers

  • 345.
  • At 10:48 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • John Schreiber wrote:

I still prefer Windows over Mac. Of course, I am still running Win 2000 on the machines that really count. Only the kids need XP, for their Microsoft games. I am still wondering if globally, computers have saved humanity time after subtracting support, development, learning curve, security and disposal.

I made the switch to Macintosh last January (1+ years ago), just after they released the Intel-based iMac. I'm using it to write this post. I've had a wonderful experience, and after having used MS products extensively (since DOS days and all through Windows and other parties' GUI interfaces), I have to say, I'm sold on Mac OS X.

To be fair, there are interface inconsistencies in OS X, but really, beyond eye candy, what makes it a stellar operating system is that you can easily adapt it to *your* work flow. From that point forward, it just works. On top of it all, I have the joy (seriously, joy) of running any OS I can throw at it. As a web developer, that makes *all* the difference in my life. Wonderful! Isn't that what we're all seeking as users of technology -- solutions that are adaptable to our workflow requirements? That, my friends, is what Mac OS X excels at.

Well I must echo the mac and linux folk here. I personally use Ubuntu Linux (google it, burn a cd, and test it out.) Boots the whole OS from the cd, see how it handles your hardware. If you like it, install it. If not, keep it as a rescue CD.

That aside, I would argue you aren't the target customer of Vista...

http://www.cs.auckland.ac.nz/%7Epgut001/pubs/vista_cost.txt

  • 348.
  • At 10:49 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Frank Daley wrote:

Microsoft's software development model is broken.

Now, in the face of increasing competition from Linux, Apple, and a plethora of online applications, Microsoft is panicking.

Anyone who owns Microsoft shares would be best to sell as soon as possible because Microsoft's position as the industry leader in operating systems and PC applications is in the process of rapid decline.

The specific problem manifested by this article is that, despite numerous alpha and beta testing cycles for Vista, Microsoft rushed out Vista in an unfinished state. The reason it was unfinished is because the development model is broken and the product is a complex can of spaghetti that reflects its undisciplined origins.

Microsoft is on a downwards spiral, and it has no one to blame except itself. And clearly, anyone buying Vista or a system running Vista is in for a shocking headache. Both the Apple Mac and Linux are now viable alternatives and are based on a superior development methodology and underlying platform.

  • 349.
  • At 11:17 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Mike wrote:

80% of websites messed up? I've had no image problems using Apple's inbuilt web browser, Safari but when a website didn't like Safari (which is not 80% of the time, I assure you), I've used Firefox and things have been perfect. The only thing Macs don't allow is Active X scripting, which can be dangerous anyway because it allows websites to control your PC and run code.

And as for software compatiblility, you can use CodeWeaver's "CrossOver" application to run common Windows programs without even buying a copy of Windows or, if you have a copy of Windows XP, install it on the new Intel Macs and have the best of both worlds.

  • 350.
  • At 11:37 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Phil wrote:

Robert's comments may well be fair but since when has the BBC website been a forum to hit out at a company without the right to reply.

bbc.co.uk is paid for by license payers and should not be used to "have a go" when other lines of complaint are possible. Especially when the complainee has a privileged position to add to the website i.e Mr Peston.

Why are you putting yourself through this grief? Just get a Mac. If you really want to run some specialized piece of Windows software, you can still do that on the Mac too!

  • 352.
  • At 11:47 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Danielle wrote:

Truly-A Mac will solve your problems.

  • 353.
  • At 11:49 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • piet wrote:

I think you nailed the problem: Microsoft released a product that wasn't ready for prime time.

The technology exists for them to preserve compatibility, best illustrated by Apple when they switched from OS9 to OS-X (the former OS, apps and drivers were running in the "Yellow Box" compatibility mode) and later from PowerPC to Intel processors with on-the-fly code translation.

I mean, Apple can change the entire OS or the whole hardware platform from underneath their users' feet with hardly a itch, and Microsoft with their 2,000 expert programmers and $30 billion in the bank can't manage to release a decent OS after 5 years in the works?! They've got to be kidding, right? Well, the joke ain't funny...

  • 354.
  • At 11:51 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
  • Eric wrote:

Robert,

I feel for you. Just get a Mac, and get your life back, man.

Liberate yourself from the technicalities of using a PC and get something done for a change. Let everyone else struggle with Vista, or the Linux flavor of the week, or whatever, and make things easy on yourself for once.

I did, and I've never looked back. Oh, did I mention? Macs are actually fun, too.

It's worth noting that all new Macs can now run Windows or Linux natively and in parallel with Mac OS X so you can now have your cake and eat it.

For me time is equally/more valuable than money - I switched to Macs 7 years ago and have never regretted it.

  • 356.
  • At 12:02 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Greg wrote:

I upgraded a laptop to Vista Business and Office 2007 enterprise (due to the fact that we wanted to use it before we sold it) and the FIRST thing the installer points you to is 'to check compatibilty with existing software and Hardware'. It even asks you to make sure you connect your devices and to run an Upgrade Wizard to let you what problems you may have in order to make an informed choice. No mention of Mac yet but here it comes.....

I too run Macs and PC's and have to say that there are some devices that MAC OS X will not run even some printers. It is easy to forget that Macs have and will continue to have a specific business niche that will never ever compete with Microsoft due to Apples firm hold in the Audio / video and Publishing arena but it does not have the diversity of applications at affordable prices.

In short - Microsoft has it's place, Linux has its place and so do Mac's just make an informed choice first and dont 'knock' others for not choosing yours as they have all helped develope technology that keeps us moving forward......

  • 357.
  • At 12:17 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Colin Saxton wrote:

Get your hands on a live Linux CD and put it in your computer...you will be amazed at what it can do...go with ubuntu, redhat fedora or suse...

Vista is about 1 to 1 and half years away from actually being *ready*. You could buy a mac and you will have fewer problems with things like MP3/MP4 codecs than you will with Linux...however, Linux is a revolution in the making...within the next 2 years you are going to see some massive changes...

I would just like to state for the record that while Gates was trumpeting 64bit computing, Linux was doing it 2 years before hand and while you may think all the 3d desktop stuff looks great...you have been able to do this with Linux for the past year!? One thing it is not is a windows 3.1 system (which some ill informed person said!)

80% of the worlds servers use Linux! Because its stable, secure and doesn't need a nuclear reactor upgrade to use it!?

I'm a wintel IT veteran, and used Windows PCs at home for 10 years, before finally switching to Mac two years ago. I'll never go back to Windows for home use, and I wish we had Macs in the office, too. In India there's a cottage industry in welding hand beaten panels onto cheap car chassis to make Porsche and Ferrari look-alikes. Windows Vista is just another fancy facade cobbled onto a rusty framework. Macs are more stable, have better compatibility with video and digital cameras and USB devices in general, have better security, better user account management, easier network setup, better multilingual support, and have more useful applications on them right out of the box. Yes, get a Mac.

  • 359.
  • At 12:50 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Jason McWhinnie wrote:

Oh boy, I also bought a new Vista-equipped laptop this week and have spent the past 2 days pulling my hair out with trying to get existing apps and peripherials to work properly. I seriously wished I'd waited~productivity has gone down the tube and I'm regretting every minute of this perceived investment. I agree with you Robert, and consider this a WARNING to others: VISTA IS NOT READY FOR GENERAL RELEASE... Fortunately I bought my machine from a store which will take it back within 28 days "if not completely satisfied", and that is precisely what I'll be doing tomorrow. As to whether I will buy an alternative OS, the sales staff in the store also sell Apple Macs, and I'll be giving those SERIOUS consideration.

Best wishes

Jason McWhinnie

  • 360.
  • At 12:55 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Mel wrote:

Read one of the top few comments for my first post, :P

to add a bit, all of you crying for legacy drivers support, thats like saying my old Pentium 2 chip should work in my brand new motherboard. Sure, it COULD be done if Intel wanted it to, but it would cause slowdowns and not really work :P

They changed the main Core of the Operating System, meaning new drivers NEED to be written, legacy supported drivers would just be slower, clunkier, and more prone to crashing.

  • 361.
  • At 01:00 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Jim wrote:

Joseph Foster wrote... "Flip this around to Apple's way of doing things (which may, or may not, be better, I make no comment in that regard), and the only mobile device you'd truly be able to use on Mac inside of its closed architecture, and be guaranteed for it to work, is one either developed, or licensed, by Apple."

Not accurate in the least Joseph. In fact, the exact OPPOSITE is true. Most devices produced by other manufacturers "Just Work" on the mac. You plug them in and away you go. Your assertion was accurate back before OSX came out 6 years ago, but not so much in the recent past.

I currently use a Proteus Sound Module, two Korg keyboards, a Presonus Firepod breakout box, an off the shelf smart card reader (that was supposed to be windows only), a treo 700p phone from Palm, an HP printer, a Cannon photo copier, a Pentex digital camera, and even a Garmin Street Pilot sync'd through Parallels and XPSP2. All of these items plug in, sync, and play effortlessly on my iMac. The system may be "closed"... but it's far more open than Windows. And it truly does "just work."

  • 362.
  • At 01:05 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Bryan Grayson wrote:

Mac users catch a lot of flack for being elitist and fanatical, but that's not really fair. If you see somebody struggling with something, I think it is perfectly reasonable to say "Hey, I use to have that problem, but I found a better way."

I was a Windows enthusiast for years, but it got to the point where I couldn't deal with all of the virus issues and crashes and having to reinstall the OS every six months. In short, I wasn't having fun anymore.

Switching to the Mac was not easy, but I'm so glad I did.

  • 363.
  • At 01:08 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • D Watson wrote:

Re: Fletch's post (No. 87)

80% of websites won't work... where does this stat come from? In last year I have only had 2 sites not work in Safari and these are sites which specify an Active X component for security reasons... I don't buy anything from them so until the developers get their act together, they lose sales!

I would expect most software will have to be upgraded to run on Vista so an 'upgrade' to the Mac version of the software should cost the same amount!

We are replacing all dead/gravely ill Windows machines with new Macs at work and all the switchers are delighted and many are buying Macs for home use too! Most of the MacBook users just close the lid rather than shut down and some of them have only been re-booted for a software/system update!

  • 364.
  • At 01:14 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Graham Fluet wrote:

I have a few things to comment on (not all are going to be posted).
1st: "57. At 12:11 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
Drags wrote:
It's quite funny listening to all the Mac owners getting so excited over the release of the latest O/S from Microsoft.
Of course, we all know how it will go. Mac owners will gloat, without good cause I might add, Vista will find it's way onto over 90% of PC's, just like it's predecessors have done and everybody will forget what a Mac is again until the next big Microsoft release where the process will repeat itself.
Strange how PC owners are quite content to use their machines without trying to sell them to every Mac user they know and yet Mac owners seem completely incapable of doing the same."
We get excited because we have a good sense of humor and can't believe that this rip-off will become so widely-used (i didn't say popular). but most people don't care about technology, otherwise they would know about Apple and Linux for dummies, and especially know about Apple.
We like to convince others to switch to Mac because it is always a rewarding experience (Unless you work for MS or companies close to it, and for some reason like your job). And people using Windows are content to not convince others because they are too busy fixing Windows, just used to it so they don't notice.
2nd, "65. At 12:16 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
Doug wrote:
Drivers. Hardware vendors.
D - R - I - V - E - R - S
V - E - N - D - O - R - S
Ok? Get it? The "Vendors" produce the "Drivers" for THEIR "Hardware".
Before you assume that software "x" will support all hardware known to man, check that DRIVERS are available. Especially if the hardware are "vital tools of your trade".
All the bleating about "oh get a Mac" and "aren't Microsoft rubbish" are a waste of valuable bandwidth.
Drivers. Hardware vendors. Repeat ..."
Because the OS is much more compact in Mac os X, the install includes virtually all drivers, and i am 51% sure they are made by Apple, and they come with every new OS, which are consistent enough to run 99% of all drivers, apps, documents such as screensavers, etc. on the new version of the OS.
3rd, "71. At 12:18 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
rockit99 wrote:
I'm an IT professional who's dealt with Mac's for nearly 15 years. I tried working with Windows but it's such an exasperating and frustrating experience - and I prefer to go home without headaches. I do still have to deal with the odd PC though and the headaches are still there.
I will say that around 90% of mainstream applications can be found on Macs and Windows, so in theory it doesn't matter which you use, but I've witnessed stauch PC users switching and saying "is it always this easy on a Mac?"
The fact of the matter is, as others have pointed out here, most people using computers for a living need to just be able to get on with their work and not have to wrestle with their machines in order to work properly.
Upgrading an operating system is not trivial. The user should NOT discover after an upgrade that a lot of their hardware no longer works. And expecting the average user to trawl the web for compatible drivers is simply unacceptable, even if they know what to look for.
Imagine taking your car in for a major 10,000 mile service, getting it back to discover the wipers, heater and lights don't work. Oh, and only two brakes work as the new system 'isn't quite ready for four'. And you need a different kind of oil than can only be purchased as one brand of garage. For a lot of money. And you need a password to drive onto the forecourt. But if you've changed the colour of your car they won't let you in.... etc etc etc"
se previouse reply
4th, "88. At 01:19 PM on 06 Feb 2007,
Ian Petrie wrote:
I notice that many comments to this blog advise Robert to make the move to macintosh. This does reflect the comment on the smugness of mac owner, but there is a point that is overlooked when discussing any of mac's products and that is that Microsoft also produces software for them. Anyone who has uses office for the mac (I own and use both systems) will find it easier to use and much better looking than the version available for the PC.
It seems like a lack of effort not to get their globally dominant software to work properly when it is possible for them to do so on an OS that isn't even theirs. It is this that has finally tempted me to upgrade my PC's operating system, but not to vista. There are many different variants of Linux available and I am currently trialling ubuntu to see if I can live with it, but it won't matter if I can't because it won't have cost me anything to do so.
I would encourage other computer users to use the opportunity that vista has given them to try a change whether that be to the mac or to another PC OS. I am by no means a mac or linux nerd but I'll be happy with anything that does what I want it to.
Ian"
There are 3 good Office programs for the Mac: NeoOffice ($0), iWorks ($80), and MS Office (Varies between the unsupported Student edition @ $150 to the version that has all the needed features@ $500)
NeoOffice is an Open Source alternative (any user that knows how to use Xcode can fix bugs, making thousands on the bug searching program), and is a nice soulutin with a drawing and a painting part. it is a big download and requires you to install the Dictionaries separately. it is a good solution for most of your work, but still a tad buggy and rough aroung the edges.
iWork is Apple's solution, which replaced Appleworks, and is a very nice program that intergrates wel with the UI (ooks very basic with the most commonly features first, but once you get the hang of it becomes a very advanced system. it currently only includes Pages, a word processor, and Keynote, which is a presentation program, although you can do spreadsheets inside Keynote and Pages. it is a very nice unit and works well with the system and, like NeoOffice and unlike MS Office, has no Macro viruses for it.
Microsoft Office is best for people that are very used to Windows (i mean REALLY because NeoOffice is very similar to it), because it carries a bit of baggage whith it (Entourage, similar to Outlook, MSN messenger on the 2004 disk, Microsoft messenger after the upgrades, handheld sync, Windows Media (the latter two required that you locate their installers in the installation) and the shared files between them which should've been in /Libary/Application Support, and a bunch of junk). unless you already bought it, I don't reccomend buying it, not even MS Office 2007 coming 'round the corner.
please note that this is about 1% of my opinion after cutting through all the Bull.

  • 365.
  • At 01:28 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Johnny Appleseed wrote:

Hey Fletch, nowadays you can buy a Mac and run Windows on it too. In fact Parallels lets you run your Windows apps within Mac OS X, without ever seeing Windows.

The author should've bought a Mac, installed Vista on it, and then when he decided he didn't like it, switch to Mac OS X without having to buy additional hardware.

  • 366.
  • At 01:32 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Johnny Appleseed wrote:

Oh, and Fletch, websites won't work any better in IE7 because it's finally moving to open standards, so all those sites that only coded for IE6 will have to get with the program.

And those keyboard shortcuts you speak of? Most of them actually originated on the Mac. Just substitute the command key for the control key and you're set.

You should probably give the Mac another shot. I'm sure it was only ignorance that stopped you liking them the first time.

  • 367.
  • At 01:34 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • John C. Randolph wrote:

Try this little experiment. Take your Olympus camera to the Apple store in London. Plug it into a Mac. See if it works.

-jcr

  • 368.
  • At 01:48 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Giuseppe wrote:

I have the impression that Microsoft is shifting its attention to the businesses and large corporate accounts. Consumers are being used to iron out the bugs in Vista, so that large companies will have a more reliable OS when they upgrade.

Xbox 360 and Live are the only segments where Microsoft seems to care about individuals. Apple is increasingly becoming the platform of choice for consumers (yes, I have switched to Macs too).

Is Microsoft becoming the Novell of tomorrow? It certainly appears so.

  • 369.
  • At 01:52 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Owen Findsen wrote:

Why do so many companies use Microsoft PCs rather than Macs? Because bosses don't think for themselves. They ask their computer technicians to select the company's computers.

And ... techicians ALWAYS pick Microsoft PCs over Macs. Why?
BECAUSE THEY BREAK!!!!!!

I have often asked techs why they don't switch to Macs. They always give the same answer. "Hey, I need this job. Macs work!"

Wake up World! You are being conned!!

  • 370.
  • At 02:07 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • kaekae wrote:

"Strange how PC owners are quite content to use their machines without trying to sell them to every Mac user they know and yet Mac owners seem completely incapable of doing the same."

that says a lot - apparently windows users don't want others to go to the same thing they do. I know when I used PCs at home, I wasn't that enthusastic, but since I switched, I am very enthusastic and I actually use my computer more at home - since I don't have to work on it. I now just have to work on my work computer.

As for comparing the OS9 to OSX transition to the XP to Vista transiton may not be apples to apples, since OSX was a completely new OS from the ground up, and I believe Vista is still a legacy OS (rewritten, not created).

  • 371.
  • At 02:08 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Joe wrote:

C'mon, Bob. You know you want one. Just give in, man. Yeah, we're mac fanboys - but there's a reason for that. C'mon, Bob. The water's fine...

Vista was made for people like Mr. Peston. Anyone who says that he has "loyally stuck by the galumphing, unaesthetic functionality of your operating systems over the past 15 years..." is Microsoft's dream customer. Vista will get better with time, to be sure. But Microsoft will forever be producing third-rate imitations of the Macintosh operating system. If millions and millions of other Microsoft lemmings can continue to put up with that, so can Mr. Peston.

I will not advise Mr. Peston to "get a Mac." I will suggest that he ask himself this: "If I bought the latest and greatest Marque MS car and it didn't run very well -- and it couldn't be fixed -- would I buy another Marque MS car, then when it exhibited the same problems, would I continue to buy Marque MS for the next 15 years?"

I answered that question with a "No," so I'm a Mac guy, because I have been using Microsoft operating systems continuously since the early days of MS-DOS. That's about 27 years of trying to like the MS operating systems. I currently have 10 Macs, one of which also runs Windows XP Pro. I'm not such a Mac bigot that I would cut off my nose to spite my face; if I need to use a piece of Windows software I will run Windows. Luckily for me, with the growing popularity of Mac hardware, the makers of the only Windows software that I use -- a suite of astronomy software -- have started to support the Mac. When they have finished re-writing, I'm finished with Windows.

Finally, I honestly sympathize with Mr. Peston over the "ridicule from pretentious Mac-loving types." You won't find that kind of annoying behavior in the MS world, because there are no Windows-lovers, only people who put up with Windows. To be sure, there was a groups of Windows-lovers, but they all died in a tragic canoe accident.

David

  • 373.
  • At 02:17 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • meatofmoose wrote:

Bill Gates stated recently that five million users were enlisted to test the readiness of Vista, I guess that not one of these users had an Oympus digital recorder or an HP IPAQ.

Bill, next time increase the number of testers to five billion, if there is a next time, that is.

  • 374.
  • At 02:18 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Mick wrote:

I too switched to a Mac(BookPro) about a 9 monthe ago. I'm using all of my old PC gear... HDs, cameras and printers even a PC wireless router. I just makes me smile when I plug things in and thety just work. Drivers what drivers? Not looking back. You really do realise why people are so passionate about their Macs! Bye, bye Microsoft!

  • 375.
  • At 02:27 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Jeff wrote:

All I can say is you had better do something before the BBC jumps entirely in bed with Microsoft. I really couldn't believe this was happening, I thought the BBC had a bit more savy.

You can always ebay your vista headache and get a Mac and be happy. I know two people that upgraded to vista and regretted it as well. Most aren't upgrading. It reminds me of the windows "me" days. In Microsofts defense win2k and winxp weren't all that bad. Problem is, any pc you buy now will have vista installed.

  • 376.
  • At 02:31 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Barry Coyle wrote:

Please, just do as I did and buy a mac. I warn you, after the first 15 minutes of using it, you'll be cursing yourself for not doing it years ago. I must have looked insane tossing profanity at myself after I decided to move all 20+ PC's in my labs at work over to mac 6 years ago. I'm infinitely more efficienct, happier, less stressed, and saving the gov't money hand over fist. I've calculated that, in 2005 dollars, I've saved over $160,000 per year, mostly in gained (previously wasted) professional man hours; ie,.. those spent previously in PC land keeping the machines running, upkeep, printing fiascos, network troubleshooting, and the rest in software upgrades reduced computing hardware costs (INCLUDING the cost of replacing the 20 odd PC's with macs.) Plus there's another $20,000 per year from not having to use in-house professional IT support each year now. Not ONCE have we had to use IT since switching. This is down to literally a weekly basis of dropping off a PC and picking one up.
Just do it man!

  • 377.
  • At 02:43 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Pip wrote:

Don't listen to Fletch. Anyone who calls a Mac a MAC obviously knows nothing of the machine. Mac is not an acronym; it's a shortened name (I know YOU know that).

That said, I have never had a problem viewing any websites (except in the late 90's/early 2000's when people only wrote pages for IE and nothing else).

Everything works and I tell you that from my 6th Mac (I've had 7 altogether and still own 3 of them). :)

  • 378.
  • At 02:44 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Lokiz wrote:

Question:
"Why should an operating system upgrade be something that only a technical person should undertake? I thought computers were supposed to be smart and to be able to do things for themselves."

Answer:
Best spoken by a computer illiterate. Computers were never suppsed to be at everyones home with exception to Apple computers. They designed the home computer, but had high standards.

From the comment I suppose you believe computers are supposed to be user friendly at first release, if it's not a Macintosh, then you are deluded.

The "Cult of Mac" theory is correct for two MAJOR reasons.

The first is that once they use a Mac they wont go back to Windows. This is true because ease of use beats out reading hundreds of manuals.

The second is because, many years ago Apple released a manual about the user interface. It was a manual that was designed to teach programmers that applications should follow a minimum standard of uniformity. This allows all applications to follow a standard of minimum useage. It also allowed programmers to unify upgrades of their own applications so if a user learns to use an application of one specific type all future versions of the same application should have similar standards.

This is why prefrences under most if not all cross platform applications have menus in the same place. It also shows the flaw in MS with applications like Internet Explorer where menus change with each version.

Dont go blaming Mac, Linux, or other OSs's when its MS that cannot follow a standard followed by other vendors.

I am a Mac a Mac user and a professional in IT support for Windows, and I still have trouble working with Vista.

If you want to make Major changes to an OS dont try to make it look like an upgrade without training classes.

  • 379.
  • At 03:23 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Albert wrote:

I have been a Mac user since day one. Have used Windows since version 3.X and various flavors of UNIX and Linux. To me, the Mac OS is far superior than Windows will ever be, regardless of what their captive enterprise and gaming audience claims.

I was a Creative Director at one of the ad agencies that worked in the launch of Windows 95 more than a decade ago and even back then I would listen at the Microsoft execs and engineers try to convince themselves how superior their product was in utter disbelief. A product I'd only venture to recommend to an enemy, if at all.

People talk about Mac users being fanatical about Apple, but you should see how their Microsoft counterparts are in Redmond and elsewhere. Brainwashed. Like James Jones followers in a Guyana camp.

The Windows OS is a veritable Tower of Babel sicne day one. Its popularity is not owed to its qualities, but to a fortunate (albeit to Microsoft only) series of historical accidents.

Now that the technology marketplace has matured as much as the public has, Microsoft's supposed superiority and preeminence (read: existence) will be questioned and tested thoroughly by enterprise and consumer alike.

I'll bet anything that it will fail the test.

  • 380.
  • At 03:24 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • RJ wrote:

It is so hard to convince PC users to switch to MACs. My friends complain and complain, but when I suggest a MAC, they cannot imagine a computer that just works. It's like finding the answer, but you have to experience it to realize that you have been in the dark for so long. That's why MAC users are so crazy and religious about their experience. We have found the light and what to share this to the world. But 90% of the world does not want to listen.

I stop trying to convince my Vista loving PC friends. They cannot be convince without "experience." Hopefully, ipod and itunes will give them some experience on the true light to solve their personal computer sturggles. Like John the Baptist, ipod and itunes are showing the light to Apple and the Mac OS.

  • 381.
  • At 03:24 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Albert wrote:

I have been a Mac user since day one. Have used Windows since version 3.X and various flavors of UNIX and Linux. To me, the Mac OS is far superior than Windows will ever be, regardless of what their captive enterprise and gaming audience claims.

I was a Creative Director at one of the ad agencies that worked in the launch of Windows 95 more than a decade ago and even back then I would listen at the Microsoft execs and engineers try to convince themselves how superior their product was in utter disbelief. A product I'd only venture to recommend to an enemy, if at all.

People talk about Mac users being fanatical about Apple, but you should see how their Microsoft counterparts are in Redmond and elsewhere. Brainwashed. Like James Jones followers in a Guyana camp.

The Windows OS is a veritable Tower of Babel since day one. Its popularity is not owed to its qualities, but to a fortunate (albeit to Microsoft only) series of historical accidents.

Now that the technology marketplace has matured as much as the public has, Microsoft's supposed superiority and preeminence (read: existence) will be questioned and tested thoroughly by the enterprise and consumers alike.

I'll bet anything that it will fail the test. Hopefully, once and for all. This world needs less suffering. Not more.

  • 382.
  • At 03:52 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • james wrote:

I would highly suggest linux - they will work with all the equipment you list and will not force you to buy new hardware to get the 3d desktop.

it really isn't just for geeks anymore - it really has become easy to install.

  • 383.
  • At 05:17 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Joe wrote:

Fletch said "and then, 80% of the websites you view will be messed up"

What are you smoking? Clearly you've not actually used a Mac as you say because your statement is simply wrong, not to mention idiotic, moronic, etc.

If, in fact, you come across a site that Safari can't handle (hasn't happened to me in a couple years) FireFox (you have heard of that haven't you Fletch?), Camino, Opera, or any one of a bunch of other browsers will render it properly.

Oh, and I'm niether trendy nor a nerd. I just like to have the tools that I own work and not have to work on my tools. That's what a computer is, a tool and nothing more. Mac's simply are, for most people (even though they don't know it) better tools than most PC's because they don't have to run Windows.

  • 384.
  • At 05:39 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Yitzhak wrote:

My recent upgrade to Windows XP Pro echoed those more advanced in knowledge. I fear most the incompetent customer service and technical support that Microsoft provides. An early employee of Rogue Wave and long time software engineer assesses the problem as one of hardware. In that case Microsoft, see if Steve Jobs will hire you. BTW that $60 billion you have for philanthropy - where is it invested until being used? Do you believe in social equity? Go Mac.

  • 385.
  • At 06:43 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • eon wrote:

Two words come to mind:


Dual or Triple Boot. XP and Vista or Linux and Vista.

This way you have a stable OS and one to keep checking as stability increases. Microsoft had quite a challenge trying to fit into Apple's shoes.

  • 386.
  • At 06:46 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Switcher wrote:


HI ALL
I switched to an Apple Mac from a PC and I'm "loving" it.
I can run MS Office (e.g. Word, Excel), Open source software, Adobe Photoshop (e.g. CS2), online banking, etc... with no problems.
Ha! Instead of fussing around with useless things like Vista and drivers. I now have more time - a life!!!

  • 387.
  • At 06:51 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • eon wrote:

Apple a closed system???

Apple incorporates much of the open unix standards for many of it's generic functions. Even the printing system using CUPS (Common Unix Printing System). The web server, Apache. Safari was even created with the help of KDesktop's KHTML.

I'm sick and tired of people claiming that MacOSX is a closed system. They really should get their facts straight before spurting out these lies. The kernal; Darwin is totally open for developers to play with. The ONLY major OS that is proprietary is WINDOWS. Please get that straight, and then you will understand why the MacOS of today is NOT the same as the MacOS before OSX.

  • 388.
  • At 07:01 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • John Derbyshire wrote:

Switched to an Intel-based MacBook a few months ago. All websites work fine, I can now run all the Windows software used at my place of work, and of course, Mac software as well. If you're on broadband, Apple upgrades happen in a seamless and problem-free manner. Crashes? None in six months! Viruses and malware? None! Obviously, this integration of hardware and software results from Apple designing both. What exactly is the problem for IT departments with Apple? Presumably it threatens techies' self-interested monopoly as Apple does not need the same level of support as Microsoft does. Mac, what's not to like?

  • 389.
  • At 07:39 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Bill Smith wrote:

Over the past year I have watched while over ONE hundred friends and business associates have gone Apple. Not one has had a bad thing to say other than it takes a few weeks to adjust. After that they are ever increasingly more excited and very pleased to have made the change. The most common remark is a sort of dismay I think that comes after a couple months saying something like I can't believe I waited so long. or Why didn't I listen earlier.

In any case today I made a purchase of a new MacBook Pro. This this laptop is absolutely amazing. SOOO beautiful, fast, quiet and smooth. I just keep seeing more and more pure ELEGANCE in EVERYTHING!!! John is showing me all the secret stuff and even though he has been on the Mac for about eleven months he's as excited as I am. I just can't imagine moving bak to Windows.

WOW Apple this is so wonderful, thank you!

  • 390.
  • At 08:14 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Susan Rennolds wrote:

Take your camera and cable to an Apple store and open iPhoto. Plug the camera in and the right driver will connect your camera.

Also take the model number for your printer to the shop so a genius can determine if the driver is already in OS-X.4 or if you will need to download it. Have them download it for you and install it.

Save your XP or Vista copy if its XPSP2 or a full install Vista and you can run one or both in a Bootcamp / Parallels partition on the new Mac. Mac Store genius help with using a Mac is free and they will help you transfer your data as well.

  • 391.
  • At 08:23 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Jon T wrote:

Funny how the attacks on Mac users always include personal insults such as 'Mac users are smug' or 'Mac fanboys'. (So, thank you Ian and others).

As a Mac user that switched after years of Windows use, I can also now recommend Robert switches to Mac.

It is simply much more reliable, secure and easy to use without losing any of the so-called powerful functionality of Windows.

Call me smug, call me a fanboy, whatever. It's your loss.

Robert, you won't know how much easier and more fun your computing life could be if you don't at least try a Mac. It would have taken you about 45 minutes to an hour to have unpacked and have your system working - FULLY.

And compared to upgrading to Vista which is becoming something no-one should even try, an upgrade to the latest Mac OS, takes 30 minutes max. Even on a five year old Mac (which runs faster than it did with the OS it came with!).

  • 392.
  • At 08:46 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Antonio Garcia wrote:

Get a Mac. I used PCs for 15 years and eventually switched 4 years ago and have run every OSX upgrade for the past 4 years and had no issues at all. Everything is as it should be. The OS does not geet in the way all the time, unlike windows. Features such as Exposé make working on a Mac much easier and more productive. All the major sofware is available from the M$ Office Suite to the all the Adobe/Macromedia stuff. M$ is just a poor excuse for a software company. There products are just second rate and alway have been. Most people bought Windows because it seemed that it was what the majority where doing, not because it was the best OS. However, we are all older and wiser now and can make more informed choices. Bill Gates has no clothes!

  • 393.
  • At 09:10 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Martin Owens wrote:

The problems with drivers stem from the whole position Microsoft takes with the hardware vendors.

Back in the days of primordial computing it was common for hardware makers to release the source code for their drivers. it just made sense.

Now we have a situation where Microsoft won't do any driver development, hardware companies will release drivers windows and mac that no one really knows how they work and linux is practically left making it's own drivers for everything.

And I tell you something too, the linux drivers are normally more stable and they never seem to stop working no matter how many kernel upgrades; that's all down to access to the source code which even if your not a developer, it helps you in the end.

Let's hope that we can remind hardware makers that they are here to please the users, not Microsoft.

P.S. the above post comparing win 3.1 with linux is the most unrealistic comparison; win 3.1 wasn't even an OS, DOS was.

  • 394.
  • At 09:35 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Dru wrote:

Hi,

Having installed a fresh copy of Vista I am all too disappointed with the level of issues I'm experiencing with even the most simple of things. Firstly I use various usb devices i.e. hard drives and memory sticks, yet Vista keeps requesting a driver for them (even win98 didn't). P.S there aren't any drivers !!!. Secondly software compatibility is very poor. I haven't got any Virus protection and my latest release Trend Antivirus software won't install as well as my nokia software.

I realise that Microsoft have made fundemental changes to the OS but to market Vista in a manner that would suggest that its full blown and ready was just wrong.

The marketing people have done their job well. They've tricked us into believing that vista is the OS to have and we've all fallen for it.

I actually think that med-long term I'll like VISTA but in the meantime I'm just Plugging and Praying all over again !!!!

Yours truly,

IT Professional

  • 395.
  • At 09:56 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • The Music Man wrote:

For a moment there I thought your name was Robert Preston...

Oh, we got trouble folks!
With a capital T
Which rhymes with V
Which stands for VISTA!

  • 396.
  • At 10:00 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Tim Evans wrote:

Ok people - Mac is not perfect but consider this. Apple would never release an operating system, make a huge deal about it for years and then have it not run iTunes or iPhoto or even Office ! It simply would not happen. Apples image is not squeeky clean but Jobs' approach is far more respectable than Gates' - people don't get tested on ! - Why should they ?? Don't put up with this sort of service anymore !! OS 10.5 is due to come out costing around £70 ex vat and I guarantee that all the stuff I usually run - Adobe CS / Skype / MS Office (built on Mac) / Sketchup and about 20 other titles ( all of which I can run at the same time on a 3 year old Powerbook 1ghz ) will run just fine if not better than before. I know that when I plug almost any digital camera in it will just work without installing the drivers, I still won't need virus software and the OS will continue to be a joy to use and contain mega additions. If I choose not to upgrade I won't be penalised either. If I choose to upgrade then choose to go back to OS 10.4 - I can do that too - something I believe you can't do once XP has been upgraded to Vista. The date transition to 2000 was considered a worry to business - I think this transition has greater ramifications. -- Ok, rant over. Robert, just switch to Mac - what do you use a computer for ? - Photos ? Word ? Music, email, Internet ? - all doable easily and in style on a Mac. The change will be relatively painless and you'll never go back, people don't. Now why is that ? All you'll need to buy is MS Office - well they did get one thing right bless 'em. Rant now difinitely over... thankyou.

  • 397.
  • At 10:33 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Richard wrote:

Drivers? Who needs them when the OS is written properly, to support standards?

The Mac wouldn't need them for your hardware.

Plug your camera in, and iPhoto launches and asks if you wish to import your photos. Easy.

Heck, if you buy Missing Sync you can most likely synchronise your PDA with the built in Address Book and iCal.

If you have a Bluetooth phone, that can be synchronised without extra software too.

Easy. Just the way it should be.

As for the comment about Microsoft writing the software for the Mac, I find it less important to have MS Office for the Mac now. We can use Pages, Keynote, Google spreadsheets, there are so many options available instead of using MS Office which they can't even be bothered to make Universal (ie it won't run properly on the new Macs - which have been out more than 1 year now!)

Richard

  • 398.
  • At 11:26 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • iain wrote:

Get a mac. You then have a great valued computer, the best OS, and if you really have to, the ability to also run Liux and Vista.
Try doing that on a Windows-limited PC box ...

  • 399.
  • At 11:28 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • John wrote:

Just out of curiosity as I'm not a Mac user. How did the Mac handle an upgrade from Pre OS X to OS X?

Did most of the old hardware and apps just work?

Windows Vista from what I understand is significantly different from XP unlike 2000 and XP so therefore you should expect these difficulties.

Oh and yes, who the hell installs a MS product before the first service pack.

  • 400.
  • At 11:42 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Robbie wrote:

i would be very interested to see what research or documents advised you that Vista would be good for you to use as a business user. I have found no articles which state that vista is completely ready for a stable business environment. From my reading I think it's clear that as the security vendors were locked out of Vista for so long their was very little time for them to check vista properly. It is no coincidence that there have been bug releases in the week of vista's launch. Vista has not passed security tests since it's release. The major issue of Vista is how to upgrade the MS software base while allowing for legacy drivers. This was always know to be more of an issue with vista's release than any other previous MS Operating System. As Vista is 2 years over due these issues have been well known for a long time. Just as Apples transition from OS9 to OSX was painful and suffered driver support issues.What i find incredible is how Microsoft did not make it more of an issue considering the resources at their disposal. The iPod is not the only MP3 player with driver problems in regards to Vista. I see it as being the OS's responsibility to be compatible with most of the devises they expect their users to already own.

I think you have acted recklessly with your business computer and should of taken advantage of the large IT department that the BBC has. When do the BBC plan there adoption of vista? I doubt it will happen with in the first month of release, more likely in the 3-9 month time frame.

I would recommend you get a Mac (either MacMini or Macbook) and if you dont like OS X then install Ubuntu.

I would advise you not to be so reckless with your work computer in the future. If you work in a company with a good IT dept then ask them when is a good time to update. Leave Beta Testing for the professional or hobbyist.

Regards, Robbie

  • 401.
  • At 11:45 AM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Krshn wrote:

So, people with this new junk called VISTA wait for the patches, patches and more patches.

  • 402.
  • At 12:05 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Kaz wrote:

Having enjoyed all the so called 'wows' taht Vista says it has, I have enjoyed these on my Apple Mac for the past 2 years.

Hate to be the one that says, "Told you so....."

  • 403.
  • At 01:22 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Bill wrote:

Someone from Microsoft once told me their motto: "First to market... fix it later."

Now it's "Rush to market... fix it later.", since several other companies seem to be clobbering them in innovation these days.

I'd wait for the first service pack at least or just stay with XP.

  • 404.
  • At 01:33 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Bill wrote:

Jon writes...

"Just out of curiosity as I'm not a Mac user. How did the Mac handle an upgrade from Pre OS X to OS X?"

"Did most of the old hardware and apps just work?"

It was tricky, but Apple pulled it off... Basically they created an emulator for the old system (OS 9) which would run somewhat transparently in the new system (OS X). The apps worked at the same speed. The only hassle was fonts and waiting the extra time for the emulator to crank up before the app. All the old software/hardware worked via the emulator, but it took a bit of time for some vendors to deliver OS X native apps and drivers.

Most Mac users upgrade quickly since it is relatively painless compared to Windows upgrades, so the limited hassle was short lived.

  • 405.
  • At 02:00 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Bodger wrote:

I bought an XP upgrade sometime ago.

I bought a mac. :)

An operating system should be like a good football referee. You shouldn't notice it.

Windoze is an invasive piece of software. Bin it and get into the 21st century.

  • 406.
  • At 02:51 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Rick wrote:

"Pretentious Mac user types..."

Love these MS apologists who simply dismiss all Mac arguments with these "Fanboy" comments.
It's like the right wing in the US, no need for civil discourse, no need to defend a position, simply say the word "liberal" or "left wing" and the discussion is over.

7 years PC support, 3 years NT networks administrator ( and before that a VMS system administrator). I'm Windows savvy and when I left the support field and became a developer I asked myself what had I learned from all those years with MS. The answer was "I don't want one".

Apple's OS has been done right.

If Yugo had had the loyal "fanboys" that MS has they could have made a decent car by now.

Geesh. Get off that wagon already.

  • 407.
  • At 03:32 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • eon wrote:

Let's not forget that Apple went through another transition after switching to OSX, they changed Processor platforms. That was an even greater change but actually for the user, it was seamless. I would even go as far as saying that Apple understands the whole puzzle and stays focused on it, where as Microsoft sees new opportunities to put their hands on other puzzles and looses interest in the ones it was working on, until they feel that the competitive pressure drives them back to working on the other ones. Look how long it took Apple to even consider getting into the phone business. They were busy keeping their primary businesses running smoothly until the time was right to expand. They maintain their products carefully and give proper attention to updates without sacrificing innovation.

  • 408.
  • At 03:49 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Richard Janus wrote:

I love how the Mac bashers keep bringing up the transition from OS 9 to OS X as if it's a legitimate comparison to the transistion from XP to Vista. OS 9 to OS X was a switch from a truly proprietary OS to one based on UNIX. Since its initial release in March 2001, when has Apple changed from a UNIX-based OS? MS meanwhile keeps foisting new mysterious proprietary underlying OS changes on the world and people simply put up with it. (Why people continue to do this is another mystery. If their toaster worked as well as a MS OS, they would have returned it for a refund and bought a different brand in a heartbeat.)

It's also funny to listen how the 'no software for Macs' and 'Mac are way more expensive' arguments still crop up once in a great while yet. Those folks should take a real good look around - and stop blindly rehashing complaints about OS 9 and earlier from the 1980s and 1990s as if they apply to OS X in 2007 (or 2006 or 2005 or 2004 or ...)

But for the ultimate solution Robert, just go buy a Mac and put the blazingly fast Parallels Desktop on it. You can then run Windows and all your Windows software right on your Mac while you also use the Mac for all things Mac users adore like the included iLife suite of products. Bonus: you can drag and drop, cut and paste, etc. between the Mac and Windows environments while they're running. Of course you could also just go get the corresponding emulator for Mac OS X and run it on your Windows machine and do the same ... wait ... that reverse scenario doesn't seem to happen for some reason. Now while the Windows apologists are screaming "well who'd want to do that anyway?", I offer the real reason it doesn't happen: in order to implement a blazingly fast emulation of Mac OS X on Windows comparable to Parallels, you'd have to ensure that Windows - the host OS - was rock solid from the start. And isn't that the problem to begin with? !!!

  • 409.
  • At 03:51 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Roberto wrote:

Note to Microsoft apologists:

the writer was running Vista on a new notebook which he had just bought.

He was NOT upgrading to Vista on an older machine.

There's a big difference between the two. Out of the box, it should - to quote a saying from that other company - just work. But it doesn't. That in itself speaks volumes.

  • 410.
  • At 04:08 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • eon wrote:

Roberto, that is a very good point.


Apple even though switching to the Intel Platform still maintains compatibility with it's previous generation computers running PowerPC G4 and better. When Leopard comes out, it will "just work" on PowerPC Macs as well as Intel Macs. They know that support should be available for computers for about 3 to 5 years. Microsoft now has the pressure to force people to upgrade their hardware because they were focusing on other projects instead of Windows. I think in the long run, Microsoft would rather have everyone get an XBox, a Zune and whatever their own branded portable computing system may be in the future and forget about their hardware partners. The concept of creating software for every piece of hardware under the sun just isn't working and they are realizing that now.

  • 411.
  • At 04:11 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Scott Bainbridge wrote:

Why as a society are we willing to allow Operating systems to not work correctly when we get them? Would we allow this of anything else "Yes sir you can have your brand new car, but the steering wheel doesnt work correctly yet we are waiting for the service pack to come out to fix this!" Microsoft has had 5 years to get this right and it still is'nt what the envisioned in the begining. People should expect it to work straight away. That is what you pay for.

Macs do have their problems and because it is propriety software and hardware it will always work like its supposed to. And yes PC's have brought computing to the masses but at what cost. Not everyone is a tech genius and in my experience users of machines just expect them to work and dont have the time or inclination to fix them or try to understand the problem. So I think Robert has a valid point in asking for this to work correctly in the first place

  • 412.
  • At 05:41 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • r€nato wrote:

Robert-

You are coming to a sad realization. Cancel or Accept?

  • 413.
  • At 05:48 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Buzz wrote:

I am appalled at the comments that suggest that it's the 3rd party vendors' fault for being incompatible with Windows Vista. Microsoft PRIDES itself on being backwards compatible. It's understandable that Windows 95/98/ME software is obsolete nowadays, and companies need to adjust accordingly. However, it seems ridiculous that Vista is incompatible with stuff that ran just fine on the 2000/XP duo. Wasn't that just ONE generation behind?

Vista offers nothing to the OS world. It has nothing more than some new bells and whistles. I was looking forward to their new database file system, but they abandoned that idea. Instead, Microsoft focused on security (which isn't proving to be all that amazing) and a "new" interface. I wholeheartedly agree with Robert's statement: "Vista was not ready for commercial release." Microsoft may have had good intentions, but they rushed their project. I would've given it another two years particularly since XP is doing just fine for now.

Your open letter perfectly explains why Microsoft's hegemony on the desktop needs to be properly challenged by a company that offers a net-native, browser-based Office equivalent - eg. no software to install, manage and de-virus on your desktop or laptop PC. And that company is Google! This is going to be the biggest shift in IT since the dawn of the PC or the Internet - moving to an on-demand software-as-a-service utility computing model - in plain English - no software on your machine - just a web browser accessing secure servers over the Internet. No more lost weekends when 'Office 2.0' comes from Google. Sell your Microsoft shares now!

  • 415.
  • At 09:27 PM on 07 Feb 2007,
  • Tim Evans wrote:

Good point Scott. Microsoft has had 5 years to get it right and Vista ( some view ! ) is still badly flawed. They scrapped about 3 years of that after they realised the work the 20,000 odd developers had done was flaky ! The OS we now see is based on Windows Server - all a bit shambolic if you ask me.
If one reads back through this blog it is striking how many Mac users there are out there ! There is a quiet revolution going on people. Rock on!! ( Ok I am biased - I sell Macs and seeing a 70% switch rate is most gratifying )

Oh dear - let's blame Microsoft for somebody else's inability to catch up!

Microsoft have had Vista in the planning for about 5 years - Beta versions of Vista have been freely available to anybody who wanted to download it. Sadly it seems as though Olympus and HP have not yet written drivers for vista. Is that Microsoft's fault?Is it Olympus' or HP's or is it your fault for not checking the compatability before the purchase?

Oh yes - let's also shout about how good Mac's are... is that why Apple only have 2% of the desktop market (source www.appleinsider.com).

An excellent article from this week gives an interesting view on Macs... http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/story/0,,2006031,00.html

I am writting this from my HP laptop, upgraded about a fortnight ago from XP Pro to Vista Business without a single hitch. It now runs faster, and is far more enjoyable to use.

All I can say is Thanks Bill - Vista's GREAT!

  • 417.
  • At 01:04 AM on 08 Feb 2007,
  • Rich wrote:

You guys crack me up. Talk about jumping on a whinging bandwagon.

I can imagine the thought process now:-

"If I'm not the first in my circle of friends/colleagues to have the new OS I'll simply die of shame"

(Rushes out to buy it, deep down hopeful it won't work properly so you can have a good old moan about it)

"Look everybody! I'm the first, I'm the first, I'm the first"

(Oh dear. There's a few teething snags I coud have predicted would happen but I blinded myself to that possibility SO I COULD BE FIRST)

Okay, it's not 100%. Big deal. If you were all so knowledgable you would have known that it's best to wait a while. Problems with instant gratification? The old stuff works perfectly fine & will do for months & years to come.

Oh, and for the guy way back who made the car comparison, it's hardly the same now, is it? The car has been honed for over 100 years. The PC & it's software for 30. And in an environment where the next model is better & cheaper and out before the old one is anywhere close to past it. Is it any wonder there are a few initial pitfalls? That said, by the by, ask anyone who knows about cars & they'll always tell you not to buy the new model immediately it comes out - let the teething problems be sorted out first.

It's all so blindingly obvious I wonder how the Mr Peston managed to get his job with the BBC in the first place given that a twelve year old could have worked it out.

  • 418.
  • At 11:55 AM on 08 Feb 2007,
  • Sam wrote:

This is hilarious those of you having a go because Robert expected an OS to work first time. We don't all sit at computers for hours a day and we don't all have the latest techno info in our heads.

Yes, waiting for the first SP would be a sensible idea but Windows should have made sure that software from 3rd party companies is written and ready for Vista before relasing it. To you Mac users out there, the only reason it works is because Apple sell all the hardware etc. so it cannot fail. Windows revolutionised the concept of home computing and are normally first class when it comes to releasing products.

So, lets give Robert advice rather than insult his ability to do his jobs or anything because he isn't some super techie PC wizard. Some of you really need to consider that some know more about Computers than others and maybe get off your high horses.

  • 419.
  • At 12:00 PM on 08 Feb 2007,
  • Quintin wrote:

Defintely not appropriate to blame MS for incompatible driver issues, although, as long as the development time was for Vista, you'd think vendors would have been up to speed on supporting the new OS - it's in their own best interest.

I suggest considering a move to OSX. Oh, there are many who'll say the Mac has little software (true back in the early 90s, not true today - unless you count games, but then, if it's games you want to play, then isn't a window PC merely toy?). There are also those who'll try to convince you that the Mac doesn't have the computing power of a PC (I have no idea how these people come to this conclusion, but I suspect it's the old "my PC runs at 4 ghz and Macs only run at 3 ghz so therefor, it's faster).

With OSX, Apple hardware and perhipherals, things simply work. You don't have to hunt down drivers and configure things. I've always been amazed that when I buy a digital camera or digital video camera that they always come with a CD of software for Windows users and no Mac software. Some would say that it's because Apple has such a small marketshare that these vendors won't support them. Guess what, the real reason is that you don't have to have software for it to work on a Mac. You plug it in and it works. I cannot understand many of my PC friends who are constantly either complaining that they are having issues with their Windows machine or are apologetic to MS and blindly accept that they have to fiddle with their computer all the time just to make it function, but hey, if that's the life you want to live, so be it.

I've been both a PC (DOS thru Windows XP) and Mac user (from OS6 to Tiger) but dropped the PC a long time ago. With Apple having switched to Intel processors, many of my "hardcore PC" friends have switched or are about to switch to Apple. They have done their research and discovered that the Mac is not only very powerful and has 95% of the software they are currently running (or something similar available for OSX) but in the long run, are less expensive. Macs are much more competitively priced than they used to be, plus they hold their value for a lot longer than any PC would.

I have no experience of any Mac user that feels compelled to give up their machine for a Windows PC because the Mac isn't doing what they need it to do. On the other hand, I have seen countless PCers making the switch to Apple and being very glad they did (only wishing they had done it sooner).

Ditch the PC, make the switch and enjoy life.

  • 420.
  • At 03:16 PM on 08 Feb 2007,
  • Mick Gillott wrote:

I have to say I am a carefull type of guy who loves his P C, I tried Vista, no problems at all its easily the best thing I have bought in years( even though I dont like spending money )
What a brilliant acheivement and still discovering new goodies every time I go on it.
Take a walk on the wildside get Vista

  • 421.
  • At 03:22 AM on 09 Feb 2007,
  • Brian wrote:

Give me a break, it is MS fault for not being backward compatible with drivers. You can not blame Olympus or any other company for Vista not being backwards compatible. Most Windows 2000 drivers worked on Windows XP, just as most Windows XP drivers work on Windows 2000 and even Windows 98.

Brian - Vancouver, Canada.

  • 422.
  • At 03:20 PM on 09 Feb 2007,
  • Brian wrote:

Dear Mick,

Hopefully, you are only running word and explorer. Anything else above this and you WILL eventually have issues. ALL, wait until service pack #2 comes out, it will be a better use of your money. Its also funny the PC stole Macs OS. Use a mac, then use vista and notice the unremarkable similarities. Microsoft engineers are a bunch of thiefs. Come up with your own ideas. The last time that happened? I think it was when the produced office TWELVE years ago. Become innovative instead of a pirate.

Buy a mac. They are great.

  • 423.
  • At 08:27 PM on 09 Feb 2007,
  • Graham Markham wrote:

I must say having just watched BBC2 programme launch of Vista and then reading most of the comments, I think I will wait for 3 to 6 months or even longer for some of the problems to be resolved.
I have run the vista upgrade compatabilty programme and the only issue was my virus protection, 'Norton Security' I was told to remove this programme and that it would not work once Vista was installed.
My other option is to switch to a Mac and being in the printing trade I know they are very good.....although more expensive than a pc.

  • 424.
  • At 10:21 PM on 09 Feb 2007,
  • Adrius wrote:

Robert
You certainly started off a snow storm, I am still blogging my upgrade experience this last weekend. I love living on the bleeding edge, which is why I did it!
(My family and I use Macs for the majority of our computing needs)

Just to be clear it is NOT your fault!

If you are technically astute then Linux is for you.

If not stick with XP or a Mac.

I did use the compatibility tool which told me I was OK to upgrade!
Audio failed, though I did it get working with a beta driver.

HP have decided to NOT support my printer and scanner. This is the real story behind the story. HP and other hardware manufacturers are using Vista to force the obsolescence of their hardware, as can be seen when attempting to download a Vista driver from HP's site:
"We are sorry to inform you that there will be no Windows Vista support available for your HP product. Therefore your product will not work with Windows Vista. The majority of HP products not supported in Windows Vista are beyond seven years old. If you are using the Windows Vista operating system on your computer, please consider upgrading to a newer HP product that is supported on Windows Vista. HP has numerous products on the market that support Windows Vista"

Imagine how many perfectly operational printers and scanners will be disposed of as a result of vendors like HP and Olympus not providing drivers... I remember a time when obsolescence was "built in" using poor paint and anti-rust techniques and the devices (cars) would stop being safe, Vista is a great excuse for HP to declare "built out" obsolescence!

This is an ecological disaster in the making, please research and report that.

  • 425.
  • At 01:25 PM on 12 Feb 2007,
  • Richard wrote:

I think a lot of people have missed the point...

When you buy a PC running Vista, you shouldn't have to think about whether or not your existing hardware will work.

After all it is not the responsiblity of the consumer to ensure backward compatibility. It is the responsibility of the manfacturers, who produce these devices.

  • 426.
  • At 05:11 AM on 15 Feb 2007,
  • louis wrote:

Most of those asking "why did you buy a laptop with Vista on" obviously haven't tried to find one WITHOUT it installed.

Vista is forced quite strongly on new laptop owners to the extent that the manufacturers will not support Xp being installed (or in the case of one of Comet's reps telling me that even if you wipe the disk "there's something on there that will stop you loading XP")

Contacting Acer direct to demand a version of XP or support met with a simple "sorry it's not possible". If you can't get drivers for your laptop then you are forced to run Vista or nothing or deal with a bunch of generic drivers where possible.

  • 427.
  • At 06:09 PM on 15 Feb 2007,
  • Paul wrote:

It bugs me when people complain about having to buy new hardware in order to use Vista. I appreciate it is far from ideal (having spent £220 myself on a new graphics card and more RAM) but it's called evolution. Consumers are becoming more and more demanding. Technology is advancing and Microsoft are pushing the boundaries. Do you expect them to just stand still? Something's got to give - either Microsoft keep churning out operating systems that run on 512MB RAM and a flaky graphics card or consumers dip into their wallets and purchase some decent hardware and make use of the state of the art products that Microsoft can offer.

As for consumers being forced into buying Vista or XP - that's true but it's not all Microsoft's fault. The manufacturers and retailers could distribute Linux if they desired but they won't for two reasons. Firstly because they would lose all the profit they make from the Windows licenses and secondly because their technical support would get swamped by consumers not knowing how to use Linux.

  • 428.
  • At 12:17 PM on 16 Feb 2007,
  • jos wrote:

Well, Robert, you may be a good economist but perhaps not so smart on practical matters. A long time user of MS products will know that Bill Gates uses the consumer to test his products and tell him what's wrong. He doesn't have to pay programmers for this part - in fact the consumer pays him for the privilege of working for him! Good business for Bill - but not very clever on the part of the consumer. Moral - never rush out to buy new software products. Wait for someone else to identify the bugs first.

The problem for the astute consumer comes when he buys a new machine and he is given no choice of OS. I had this with Windows Millenium about 5 years ago - an awful OS but no one would supply me with a new laptop with anything else. I knew the system was untested and likely to be crap (excuse the expression but one cannot pull punches when talking about new MS releases) but I had to buy it. And of course it was awful and when I tried to put another OS on the machine, I found the laptop configuration would not work well at all. Perhaps some geeks could have found a way around the problem but I, like 98 per cent of users, use computers as a tool and not as a plaything/technuical challenge in itself, and have no time nor expertise for such a performance.

  • 429.
  • At 03:08 PM on 16 Feb 2007,
  • Martin wrote:

Yes ! u can blame microsoft for the drivers not working.

there is no reason why upgrading an operating systems makes a driver incompatible.

if programmers use the API correctly, drivers should continue to work upgrade after upgrade.

all applications developed for windows 95 should still run too.


the mac has been through 4 major transitions:

from the motorola 68K processor to the powerpc

from system 1,2,3,4,5,6 to system 7

from system 9.x to mac os X

from the powerpc to the intel core duo.

any application that was written in 1984 for a completely different OS, and a completely different processor still runs on a mac today, unless it did not follow Apple's guidelines.

there is one thing i really don't understand, why do u need drivers for a camera at all ?

on a mac you don't need any drivers to connect to camera's, phones, printers etc...

You don't need to buy an overpriced computer with an OS almost as evil as Microsoft's to flee Bill Gates and its monopoly. Switch to GNU/Linux.

I do recommend you Kubuntu, it's a very flexible and powerful Linux distribution that will give you the same experience as Windows XP, *without* the security issues and the BSoD's.

  • 431.
  • At 10:40 AM on 19 Feb 2007,
  • Mel Snyder wrote:

I agree with those who correctly claim that drivers are the responsibility of the hardware manufacturers, not Microsoft. Olympus, like other companies, could have availed themselves of the offered developers' kit...but that would deprive them of the ability to hide behind Microsoft, and rejoice at their ability to render obsolescent perfectly good hardware.

Moreover, I have to ask: Why do people with perfectly good operating systems and hardware feel the need to replace them? What problems do they really solve? To me, this is as foolish as someone with a perfectly functioning heart undergoing a transplant to be able to run a faster 100-meter dash. And those who protest generational incompatibility, to me, resemble those who would try to drop a V8 into a perfectly functioning 6-cylinder auto, and then complaining when nothing functions again.

Ever notice how Mac users who tout the perfection of their systems flock to buy every new operating system offered for their machines?

  • 432.
  • At 11:19 AM on 19 Feb 2007,
  • Tom Taylor-Duxbury wrote:

Scary times for MS it seems. If it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck it’s a duck. 6 billion later it’s still a duck. What the hell did they spend all that money on?
When Apple launched a new OS I don’t recall all this flak. Neither did I see any ‘Flocking to buy” I stuck with OS9 for 2 years before migrating, I know plenty Apple users who stil use 9. One simply has to migrate eventually or you’re excluded from latest material developments
Oxymoron. MS Works!
What’ll happen if Apple port their OS for loading right onto PCs? People like me will still buy superthin laptops that don’t date in 5 years, and show remarkable reliabilty. Style over function? No! Style with quality? Yes!

  • 433.
  • At 10:50 AM on 20 Feb 2007,
  • Geek wrote:

Last Month I finally decided to upgrade from Windows 2000 when I built a new PC. I took the brave decision to go into uncharted waters of Windows XP! I finally figured now Bill has a new toy to play with XP must finally be ready for release. I might upgrade to Vista in about 5 years time but I'm quite happy with my combination of XP and Linux.

Consider Linux as an alternative. Try out Ubuntu and PCLinuxOS. They are both excellent distributions.

  • 435.
  • At 05:17 PM on 20 Feb 2007,
  • B o wrote:

I think that sticking to xp, or changing to mac are your best options robert. I would wait till the service pack is released, thats when i am getting mine anyhow.

  • 436.
  • At 05:53 PM on 20 Feb 2007,
  • Paul wrote:

In Robert's circumstances, he was 'stitched up', because with a broken machine he had to do something.

But for anyone else, a prevalent rumour is that M$ don't use any new OS on their own desktops until SP2 of that OS is released. If that is true, I shall do likewise.

It will be interesting to see the effect of the WEEE Directive (Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment) which essentially places a direct responsibility on kit vendors to take kit back when it is retired. Profit-driven obsoleting of working kit is envirnomentally unsound. It's also short-sighted from a business perspective; the environment is an area where public concern is growing, not waning.

Manufacturers will try to make Joe Public carry all the WEEE cost, but unlike the Banks (in another strand) in this case consumers don't "forget they have a choice". I will accept having to pay a fair proportion of the WEEE cost as long as I am also able to choose when I retire my kit.

I retire kit when it finally falls over physiccally, or when I come to need functionality it doesn't offer. Not when the manufacturer chooses to increase profitability by terminating support for it - certainly not before the 10 years are up.

I am shopping for a new printer: as an XP user at this time with no upgrade plans, I'm thankful to have been warned off HP.

  • 437.
  • At 04:31 AM on 22 Feb 2007,
  • wacky addict wrote:

as you all know i love vista...and evrything in this world is in constant upgrade from evry little things....to cars houses gadgets and all that...hmmmm...i love it no more no less

  • 438.
  • At 05:41 AM on 22 Feb 2007,
  • Deborah wrote:

I think the Vista release is premature because I'm not done hating XP yet!

  • 439.
  • At 11:29 AM on 22 Feb 2007,
  • Graeme Talboys wrote:

Not everyone has a choice about whether to buy a new computer or not. Mine conveniently (for Bill Gates) suffered a terminal crash at the same time that was Vista launched. I needed a new computer quickly and live a hundred miles from the nearest decent computer store. So it was on the phone to Dell and no choice about the operating system. As for drivers. All the big companies had pre-release copies of Vista in order to upgrade the drivers for hardware and to sort out compatability problems with their software. Some did, only to find that Vista was radically changed from the version they were given. Others just aren't bothering. Why should they when you then have to go out and buy money on a new product (if one yet exists). The whole thing has been a cynical exercise on the part of Microsoft. They knew Vista was nowhere near ready for release; or perhaps they are so wrapped up in their own little word of computer expertise that those of us who barely know where the on/off switch is just have to make do until the wonderful people of Microsoft deign to correct the many faults in their product.

  • 440.
  • At 01:04 PM on 23 Feb 2007,
  • Mukesh wrote:

This piece is typical of recent BBC styles on news and documentaries, i.e. following public opinion and fads rather than covering / investigating from a neutral / impartial point.

Microfost cannot be responsible for every manufacturers peripherals or devices nor can they be forced to make all their products backward compatible for every device / software.

As much as I dislike Microsoft, I know that they are not to blame for everything. Almost anyone with a modicum of common sense knowsthat it is prudent not to be the early adopters and at least wait until the first service pack.

You can take virtually any BBC news item, documentary or supposedly factual program and see their completely unscientific and unprofessional presentation.

  • 441.
  • At 08:55 PM on 23 Feb 2007,
  • Gerard wrote:

You're absolutely right to comment on the quality of the Vista product. I myself have installed it now for a little over two months on my 3 year old centrino laptop. It hasn't been all glorious but it works.

It even works with my printer and phone. No aero interface though, the chipset of my laptop doesn't support the 3D.

Still after all the ranting and raving from all those who commented and reading on your own very reasonable frustration I ask you not to try and compare Apples and pears.

It is true that Apple have a devout following and that the machines they produce, with pre-installed OS, work a bit better then say your average Windows based machine. But what about it? Isn't the all time deciding factor the bottom line? I believe that we can all whine what we want but essentially we buy what we can afford, not what is best.

The cost of Windows is that you actively participate in the testing, wittingly or not. I myself get paid indirectly to do it as I work with the stuff professionally, you on the other end could afford to be the early adopter. It's correct to say you should have waited until SP1 or do some investigation first to see if your devices were compatible, but then again you didn't. You also didn't wait for the iPhone, as you bought a digital camera and an iPaq (and probably have a phone and mp3 player as well).

But do not forget this: the iPhone is the first device that Apple will produce in some time that does more then play songs. We'll see how far the Windows based devices will be when it comes out. That’s round the time Bill Gates will retire.

Dare I say it - I've been in IT for more than 20 years, was an MCSE at some point, and present on technology in my own wee niche. So far so good.

It still took me EIGHT attempts to upgrade a machine to Vista:

http://www.billbuchan.com/web.nsf/d6plinks/BBUN-6Y9NXJ

And I'm still beating my head against some of its interface:

http://www.billbuchan.com/web.nsf/d6plinks/BBUN-6YS8LA

No wonder the share price hasnt rocketed:
http://www.billbuchan.com/web.nsf/d6plinks/BBUN-6YRREQ

Recommendations:
- get a mac.

(Which up till last year would bave been seen as heresy from me).

---* Bill

  • 443.
  • At 01:50 AM on 27 Feb 2007,
  • MiMac wrote:

The Mozilla firefox dev team has shown the world that a small market share can grow into a large one, with Firefox now having 15% of the browser market overall.

Microsoft should not get complacent on forcing us to live with their glitches and quirks, there is an alternative waiting to take some market share, and that alternative is getting a strong grass roots movement.


  • 444.
  • At 11:40 PM on 01 Mar 2007,
  • Brian L wrote:

It strikes me there's a fair degree of (possibly orchestrated) "salesmanship" going on in this interminably long and boring string from the Mac and Linux camps. Is this really the sort of thing we need on a BBC site?

  • 445.
  • At 01:37 PM on 02 Mar 2007,
  • Ben wrote:

Get over yourselves - youve all heard the troubles customers with Vista is facing so dont use it until theve ironed out the problems - or buty a new computer with VIsta installed so you know it will work to its full potential.Stopp moaning and get on with your lives

  • 446.
  • At 04:45 PM on 02 Mar 2007,
  • Stuart wrote:

Solution = Mac. Imagine a world were your computer doesn't crash, no blue screens of death, no imcompatibility problems or troublesome hardware installations, barely any risk of viruses (I have been a Mac user for 2 years without any issues whatsoever) and perhaps best of all great functionality. Oh, and they keep their value better than any other electronic item out there. Take the plunge and don't look back. You'll thank me down the line, just as I did to do "pretentious Mac user" that referred me!

  • 447.
  • At 03:16 PM on 03 Mar 2007,
  • darren wrote:

hate to be smug but -

im glad i have a mac

  • 448.
  • At 03:53 PM on 07 Mar 2007,
  • m ramakrishnan wrote:

The fact is that whether we like it or not we are mired in microsoft windows systems.

  • 449.
  • At 01:14 PM on 08 Mar 2007,
  • Paul wrote:

I can't be bothered to argue in favour of Apple or Microsoft.
I own a Mac and a PC, both of which I like. I use a mixture of OS: 10.3.9, Ubuntu 6.10 and Win XP - all of which do the job perfectly.
I'm a bit concerned that Vista appears to have so many teething problems though.
I agree with many of the comments stating that compatibility issues with 3rd party software and peripherals do lie in the hands of the 3rd parties themselves. Microsoft cannot be expected to provide for every single printer, digital recorder, camera etc etc out there. Comment 16 makes an interesting point which I agree with in this case.
P.S. Not all Mac owners are 'smug' or 'pretentious', we are just happy.

  • 450.
  • At 03:52 PM on 08 Mar 2007,
  • John Midgley wrote:

Erm... I 'upgraded' two machines, one to Home Premium and one to 'Ultimate'.

And both work fine!

No only that, faster than XP was.

Admittedly I had to search Google three or four times to get the peripherals working but the answers were there and now everything works with very little hassle.

And for all you Mac Evangelists out there, I'll be buying a new laptop in a few months and it will be a Mac, but to run windows as well.

  • 451.
  • At 12:19 PM on 12 Mar 2007,
  • Bruce Beardall wrote:

Aero 3D style interface? I've got that.

Increased security? Got that too.

Stability? You betcha!

My Linux-powered laptop is a beauty and I didn't have to upgrade the hardware or pay a ridiculous amount of money for a software upgrade either.

From where I'm standing, it's a no-brainer...

  • 452.
  • At 01:42 PM on 12 Mar 2007,
  • Nick Jones wrote:

I have installed a number of Vista PCs recently and the frustration for me is that ISPs and peripheral manufacturers are not ready with drivers and utilities for kit which they have known for a long time will be used on Vista machines.

This leaves non-technical/casual users feeling frustrated and cheated at their inability to use their existing hardware in conjunction with their new PC, but the blame needs to be apportioned equally across the computer industry and not levelled entirely (and unjustly) at MS: these companies make enough money out of us that they should be prepared and be able to offer better support to their customer bases.

For those who rely on technology for their livelihood and for whom the risk of changing OS is far greater, however, you do need to do your homework, checking compatibility and availability of drivers/Vista support. Such a switch is non-trivial and needs to be thought through.

Lastly, if it really HAS been as bad as you claim it has for the last 15 years, then why on Earth haven't you made the switch to a Mac? ;)

  • 453.
  • At 10:43 AM on 16 Mar 2007,
  • John Blaikie wrote:

Never buy Version 1 no matter how many times they say they've checked it before release, there are no better beta testers than the general public... WAIT FOR VERSION 2!

  • 454.
  • At 06:22 AM on 17 Mar 2007,
  • Ivan wrote:

Well, Macs are created for ease and entertainment, but they can never be an MS opponent in certain niches of the PC market. Macs are a closed (YES they are), because there has always been only ONE architecture for them... Owning a PC means variety - you have two processor companies battling over the lead of performance, you have Windows and Linux... You all say that many software vendors are releasing Mac's versions of their profucts... Well that's not true for many specific engineering applications, where PC ARE dominant. And if someone likes using one operating system at his/her work, he/she would prefer to keep for home use... Vista will get better - this has been always happening after Windows releases, just wait for the first Service Pack.

So my advice is: if you, Rob, want to change your OS, change it with Linux (Ubuntu would be the easiest to switch to). I personally use Fedora Linux - and yes, I love it. It gives you freedom - something that Mac or Windows users can never have. If not - just keep your XP until Vista gets stable (5-6 months)...

  • 455.
  • At 04:16 PM on 18 Mar 2007,
  • Ezekeil Gouldman wrote:

Hi there.
You can't really put all the blame for drivers on the shoulders of M$, you can however curse them for not pressuring the hardware manufacturers to alter drivers to suit the new OS. As for 'Get a Mac'. well I have one, it is fantastic, but, alas some hardware is still uncompatable. Epson's R220 printer drivers are dodgey as are Canon's scanner drivers which only work fully in OS9 (in Classic).
Getting a mac is a good idea, but only if you are replacing your PC anyway. The new iNtel macs will run XP (SP2) and Vista but why pay all that money for a fancy box that does the same as a less fancy box. I bought a mac because it suits my purposes, I prefer the OS to windows 95% of the time (though I do prefer windows for gaming). A mac doesnt suit everyone, and they are priced rediculously, especially now they just a PC in a fancy box rather than a PPC based system. Infact, the new intel macs are far less powerful than cheaper PCs on the market, and if you must have OSX, a clever German bloke has ported a version of Tiger (OS 10.4) to run on any wiNtel box. Try that out.

Hope my rant helps,
Zeik Gouldman

  • 456.
  • At 11:29 AM on 26 Mar 2007,
  • mike wrote:

Why not just install XP, that would only set you back £70 for an OEM copy, or better still give a Linux Distro a go, I bought a new VISTA laptop and Immediately removed the offending VISTA software and installed opensuse 10.2 which works splendidly, and has more eye-candy than any apple macintosh on the market (using the Beryl project)

;)

  • 457.
  • At 12:03 PM on 26 Mar 2007,
  • Mick wrote:

I agree with the comments advising those with serious work to do to not buy Vista.

Microsoft are infuriating with large-scale issues of gimmicks largely irrelevant to business needs. Indeed I recall a microsoft director struggling to think of good reasons for anybody to buy Vista resorting to the "less faults than XPs" line - a bit of a desperate non-argument.
Especially since quality control in software companies is non-existent only somebody with too much time on their hands would buy new releases and act as a free test facility for these greedy and largely incompetent organisations.

Most major companies will try to wait 2-3 years before reluctantly installing Vista. I recall at a major multi-national with 100,000+ PCs, still using windows 98 about 3 years after the next release appeared. Big companies can't afford the waste of time entailed by microsofts latest gimmicks (with negligible positive impact on productivity).

My real bone with microsoft is why are their defaults always the most crass, childish and stupid options available?

  • 458.
  • At 12:34 PM on 26 Mar 2007,
  • Steve C wrote:

This makes very interesting reading especially the polarised views on Mac v Win.

I make a living from the Windows world so long may Microsoft exist. Vista was an easy upgrade for me. I Installed Parrallels and ran the install and everything worked fine....

I moved from PC to Mac at home last year after 20 years of being a PC evangilist. I have to echo the other comments I have reado on here which is why did I not do it sooner. No PC's in my house now, juts 3 Macs and an Xbox!

The fact is that Macs do what they say on the box, they just work!

  • 459.
  • At 12:35 PM on 26 Mar 2007,
  • Andrew Spence wrote:

I too have given up on Microsoft. XP has given me its fair share of pain (not to mention Windows 98, Me, 95, and 3.1). I resolved that I was NOT going to migrate to Vista. Instead I'm going the Linux route (specifically Ubuntu, though there are other good distros out there too). Maybe Linux rules out most games (why not buy a dedicated box instead?) but it does give you a robust OS and a great deal more choice, control and security. If you have a second computer lying around (and most people have now), install Ubuntu. There's a learning curve as with any other OS but it'll pay handsome dividends in the long run. Mac is also an option that commands my respect but the cost and being locked into a proprietary system are both drawbacks.

  • 460.
  • At 12:38 PM on 26 Mar 2007,
  • NIKO wrote:

I realise this is quite an old article, yet I feel compelled to add that Linux supports more hardware "out of the box" than any other operating system.

More often than not these days you can simply plug you hardware in and it will start working.

I seem to remember a similar situation with Windows XP back in 2001. Strangely enough, I have been hearing (and experienced for myself) that Vista seems to run better on upgraded PCs around 1 or 2 years old, than on new ones.

Although I think the principle behing this article is sound - de-fenestration being necessary for computational advancement - people need to realise there's more to personal computing than a Microsoft vs Apple war. Use neither! When it comes to commercial ethics, both are as bad as each other; both try to force you into using their proprietory solutions, for example, which reduces the variability in the products you can use together.

BUT there is a solution: the various FREE and reliable Linux based operating systems. Not only do I use Debian GNU/Linux, I've also managed to get my technophobic father to use it too.

  • 463.
  • At 03:24 PM on 26 Mar 2007,
  • Wrighty wrote:

Again Microsoft seems to have missed an opportunity.

I work in the IT industry and I do not want the bells and whistles of Vista mainly because of the impact on the users’ ability to do their job. In a corporate environment, most of the fancy features will end up being turned off. I don't care if the user can see the background through their dialog boxes, what I care about is a stable, efficient OS.
Why have Microsoft given the business version a system recovery option when it is unlikely to be used (data is normally backed up to a server), but removed it from the Home version where it would definitely be used, more often than not due to the fiddling of the not so techie owners.

Come on Microsoft wake up to your customers needs. This OS has been rushed through with little consideration for the end user, a short list of current problems are

Hardware incompatibility
New security features setting Vista to a basic mode if it thinks its license has been tampered with.
New security features being suspicious of existing applications.
Vista can choose the best version to suit a platform possibly leading to inconsistencies in corporate roll out.
Most current office hardware will not run Vista without some upgrading.
SPI Firewall features of Vista does not like SPI enabled routers.


  • 464.
  • At 11:11 PM on 28 Mar 2007,
  • Tony Inchley wrote:

Why does Dell fit Vista as standard with all its problems. It is a nightmare for an amateur like me.

  • 465.
  • At 11:39 PM on 28 Mar 2007,
  • AlexT wrote:

I'm now quite happy with XP. No one has yet explained to me any tangible benefit that Vista has over XP.

It seems that Vista is more like a Mac in its interface, so I could buy a Mac. But then Apple's advertisements state that Macs are meant for the homes, and PCs for business, and I need my PC for business.

  • 466.
  • At 12:42 PM on 29 Mar 2007,
  • Paul O'Brien wrote:

Change happens.

Remind me. When does the BBC fully switch over to digital, so that everyone has to get rid of their old analogue TVs and purchase a digital set?

For that matter, I recall that when BBC 2 first went on air, many people had to buy a new set - and a new aerial.

Pot. Black. Calling. Kettle. The. The.
Rearrange these into a sentence that makes sense.

1) I don't need to change yet, did you?
2) Sure, someone has to be among the first to purchase. But, as others have said, in the IT world, perfect running happens well down the line.
3) as for the comment on the Olympus... how on earth is that Microsoft's fault?

I don't like monopoly price exploitation, and since Apple controls both OS and hardware, I certainly wouldn't jump in that direction.

I'd have stayed with what works; I'm not a believer of OS upgrades on existing systems. If buying a new PC, I'd want Vista, but I might have to pass if the apps I need are not compatible yet.

New OS = new drivers, DUH. So of course Vista is "incompatible with existing drivers", if they're drivers for an older OS. Unlike well-written applications, drivers have to work far closely with OS details, and therefore will rarely work when the OS changes.

The real puzzle is why so many big vendors (HP, Pastel Accounting, bundled Nero Express 6) aren't Vista-ready.

I've heard that many such vendors were Vista-ready during the beta process, but late pre-release changes in the OS invalidated this readiness and so they're still having to catch up with the RTM version.

As to Google apps, I'd ensure I was able to back up my data (created using these) from their servers to my own PC, before considering recommending them. I've heard that this is not the "given" you might expect it to be.

Be careful who you chain yourself to ;-)

  • 468.
  • At 10:53 PM on 03 Apr 2007,
  • Michael Garrido wrote:

GNU/Linux works
thanks to Vista people is looking for an alternative:

* Keep XP until anti piracy get you
* Switch, pay and suffer with Vista
* Buy a Mac , experience the stable an simple Mac OS X (but buying other computer)
* Switch, don't pay an try Linux (suguest Ubuntu 6.06LTS DapperDrake or the new comming Ubuntu 7.04 Festy Fawn with migration tool also OpenSuse 10.2)

I took the last(Ubuntu 6.06LTS) and i keep my old Pentium III :)
don't trash your pc (help the planet)use a Linux Distro

  • 469.
  • At 01:35 AM on 04 Apr 2007,
  • Jim Zimmerman wrote:

With some apprehension I made the switch to Mac about 10 months ago. I put Parallels and Boot Camp on it so I could still have Windows. My bad! Everything works better on a Mac including Microsoft Office, Mac version. I rarely boot into Windows anymore unless I want to be totally frustrated and also waste an hour for anti-virus updates and spyware scans.

  • 470.
  • At 10:39 PM on 15 Apr 2007,
  • pete wrote:

try running xp and vista on a dual boot system till the drivers/service packs are sorted i used my vista upgrade cd as a clean install on a partitioned drive ok, gives me time to load programs one at a time on a trial basis and still have my xp system to fall back on, do have at least 1gb ram if poss though

  • 471.
  • At 12:46 PM on 18 Apr 2007,
  • Dale wrote:

First, its not the fault of Microsoft that 3rd parties havent bothered to update drivers. They provided the BETA's to give them plenty of time to develop drivers. Blame the 3rd parties for that.

Also blame yourself. Microsoft has information online in their Hardware Compatibility List, showing what they KNOW works. Check the list BEFORE upgrading....

http://winqual.microsoft.com/hcl/Default.aspx

  • 472.
  • At 10:44 AM on 03 Jun 2007,
  • Earl wrote:

Oh boy. I can give many reasons why folks should stay away from Microsoft's Vista. However,one will do. It doesn't work.

I recently bought an HP 1740n desktop computer. It came preloaded with Vista. Once I got it setup and running I attempted to transfer files from XP. That's when I knew I was in trouble.

Vista didn't recognize a lot of the files created under XP. The files it did recognize caused errors. Opening picture files created under XP is out of the question. Web surfing is almost impossible because sites use graphics. I got a constant stream of ipgspl.ax errors. Which of course lead to system crashes. Documents created with word also caused system crashes. The solution according to MicroSoft was to purchase Office 2007.

However, I did got out a buy a copy of XP. Tried to load it up on my new machine and Vista wouldn't recognize the installion CD. After 4 days (10 hours each day)of trying to get my computer to work I was finally able to uninstall all that preloaded stuff, including all the HP drivers and got XP loaded.

This was no easy task. If anyone is attempting this let me warn you in advance. Your in for a long install process. You will definitely need another OS to start with. Then your going to have to do some work with your system bios.

My recommendation for those of you who do want this headache. Don't buy machines preloaded with Vista.

Thank you MicroSoft. I now have the experience of working with OS system software. Something I'm sure you never intended.

  • 473.
  • At 04:14 PM on 11 Jun 2007,
  • Jonathan wrote:

To all those who are blaming the hardware manufacturers for Microsoft's apparent driver problem, I would say that it is Microsoft's operating system and if they want those 3rd party drivers to be available on time (i.e. they want anyone to be able to do anything with their bloatware other than use NotePad) then it is Microsoft's responsibility to push those hardware manufacturers to make the new drivers, and to supply them with all the information and programming assistance they require in order to get it right first time well in advance of any official launch. (ha! 'Microsoft' and 'getting it right first time'? Will never happen)

This is like inventing a new audio file format without letting anyone know how to include support for it in their players. Oh wait... Microsoft are partially in that boat too with their closed-source Windows Media formats. Someone should tell them that there are people out there with other operating systems who might just need to play a Windows Media file at some point.

  • 474.
  • At 11:58 PM on 15 Jun 2007,
  • Jean wrote:

I found a great deal on a Toshiba Satellite A135-S4527 notebook. It comes with only the Vista operating system. My concern is the conflict with different applications I may have.

I have the 2000 and 2003 microsoft office professional but concerned if I can install this on my new computer or will I continue to have conflicts. I was told you could not even load the programs as well as you can load but will have lots of conflicts.

Could you give me the real truth? I hate to lose this great deal on the Toshiba but I also don't want to have to buy another microsoft 2007 office professional disk.

Thanks for your assistance.

wieuca1@bellsouth.net

  • 475.
  • At 10:16 PM on 18 Jun 2007,
  • Pete wrote:

Vista? Who needs more punishment from Microsoft?
I switched to PCLinuxOS 2007 about two months ago and it's better than anything Gates and M$ have ever come up with!
Try it and prove to yourself just what a great O/S it is.

PC's aren't the problem, Micro$haft Wincrap, is. There are plenty of other Operating Systems that will run on PC Hardware. Just because people buy into the Winsucks Marketing BS, doesn't mean these other OSes do not exist.

There are many distributions of Linux, for example. Not all are technical but all are cheap and / or free. Freespire and Linspire are geared towards you average user. Even my father (almost 60 years old and about as computer literate as a brick) prefers the Linux Desktop over his previous frustrations with Windows.

There is also: BSD, Unix, eComstation and a variety of others. Which one is best for you? Thats for you to decide. The free ones you can just download, burn and install. Most of the pay ones at the very LEAST have a Demo disc you can boot directly from.

So don't knock PC's just because the world was dumb enough to make an idiot's product popular.

-Dave

  • 477.
  • At 04:22 PM on 14 Jul 2007,
  • Nikos Arechiga wrote:

Dear Robert,

Widows is not "an idiot´s product". Microsoft´s success comes from being the first company to provide cheap software. I don´t mean cheap as in paying a dollar for a license, but I mean cheap as in "regular people like you and me can actually afford it". Computers used to be about as expensive as airplanes. Microsoft started a revolution in computing. However, this revolution is over. There are other affordable systems (in fact, there are some free systems...). If Microsoft wants to keep being successful, they need to focus on quality now. Windows is much less efficient an much less stable than the linux systems... and much less pretty than MacOS.

It sounds like you have a problem on your hands. If you wanted to keep your computer you could switch to linux... however, don´t be fooled by the cheerfulness of linux critiques that say it isn´t really all that difficult. Admittedly, linux technology has advanced at a rapid pace and is much more user friendly than it was five years ago; but it´s still no walk in the park.

I would personally recommend switching to linux and fighing it out... maybe with one of friendlier distributions like OpenSuse or actually paying for one of the better supported distributions like Red Hat or Mandriva while you muster the confidence to venture off on your own. However, computer taming might not be something you have time or enthusiasm for.

Even if you´re not a computer type, though, I think it is important that you become more computer literate. It seems to me like a computer is a fairly important tool to you. Picking up a few computer skills might be very beneficial to your work. Play around with it. Change things on it. Download new software. (Make sure to scan it with an antivirus...). Stay ahead of the game. It´s not just Microsoft that abuses its users... do you use Norton Antivirus? Don´t. Their evil subscription scheme deactivates Norton unless you pay them... Switch to Free AVG: free.grisoft.com. Try to find free alternatives to the software you use the most.

I hope it all works out for you,

--Nikos

  • 478.
  • At 10:27 PM on 15 Jul 2007,
  • Dave Potts wrote:

Yesterdays software which requires tomorrows hardware

  • 479.
  • At 03:37 PM on 16 Jul 2007,
  • lola wrote:

Please get some training!

  • 480.
  • At 05:18 AM on 18 Oct 2007,
  • Peetz wrote:

Get real, you Linux nerds.

I consider myself pretty tech-savvy for a person not qualified in computers. I can figure things out, and regularly give Windows tech support to my less-tech-savvy friends.

I switched from XP to Mac, and am totally thrilled.

However, I have no clue how to switch to Linux, and it sounds like it'd be hard to get Linux drivers for my older HP notebook.

Linux is just a techie's hobby, and not ready for prime time, even for relatively tech-savvy non-computer-industry types like me.

  • 481.
  • At 04:51 PM on 21 Oct 2007,
  • Mike Magnay wrote:

I recently upgraded- from W2000 to Xp! I will only upgrade wnen absolutely required. If it aint broke...
Important thing about Vista is that most of the complexity (and extra hardware requirement) is not for your benefit, but for the the Digital Rights Management systems designed to prevent you being naughty. See the net for blogs by Ms insiders, who call Vista the 'longest suicide note in history'.
If it were not for some legacy compilers I need I would have gone Linux years ago.

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