Initial thoughts on Vista

Personal,Products by on February 16, 2007 at 8:31 am

I’ve been running Vista for a week now. I’ve had to put a lot of time into getting the environment set up the way I prefer (it still is taking up spare time).


  • Admin tools are better. I’m finding that I need random third party utilities a lot less. I was thrilled to fined the hard drive partition management tool - it allowed me to easily free up the 4GB of space occupied by the Dell pre-installed XP image.
    • However, they moved around a few functions and it is still taking me a while to get familliar with the functionality. It took me forever (required a visit to Wikipedia) to figure out how to add a folder to the start menu
  • Start Menu navigation has improved. I didn’t like the move from 2000 to XP - it seemed like I had to move my mouse more, but this change has made navigating quicker.
  • Desktop search just works. I no longer have a need to install Google Desktop search (or Yahoo Desktop Search)
  • Cleaner visuals. The graphics just feel cleaner. I love the way that images are automatically displayed as the icon, even in list view. The usability of the taskbar and icons on the desktop have improved as well. They use the edge of the screen well (keeps the item selected if you mouse off screen).

Don’t Like:

  • 512K RAM is too little RAM. Everything seems to run in slow motion and read/writes to my disk are pretty pegged. I should order more RAM, but I think I’ll try ReadyBoost instead.
  • Not all drivers present. I had to go searching around online for drivers. The one I found for my touchpad wasn’t technically the right one, but it works.
  • Not all programs are compatible. This sucks. I can’t get Firefox and Gaim working properly. Even in compatibility mode. Firefox works most of the time, but it sometimes is unable to download a website.
  • Can’t change the color of the taskbar. It is black and always black. I prefer a black desktop, but it just doesn’t look right with a black taskbar. I’d like blue back…

I don’t have enough graphics support for ‘Glass’ - My Windows Experience Index is below:


If I were to grade the experience on a scale of 1 to 5, I would give it a “2”. So, maybe the Windows Experience Index does a good job of indicating how you’ll like the experience…

Anyway, if you’re thinking about upgrading, my advice would be to wait and allow software and hardware vendors time to fix their compatibility issues.


  1. john — February 17, 2007 @ 8:57 am

    the experience index is just goofy. i have no idea what to do with it. mine is 4 something but i have no idea if i should feel good or bad.

    in general i am a little blah. not much to get excited about.

  2. ben-mo — March 14, 2007 @ 12:11 pm

    Unless you are running just the basic version of Vista, you really need 2gb of memory to have a great experience with Vista. Memory is so cheap now that it’s well worth the $ spent in saved productivity.

  3. davenaff — March 14, 2007 @ 7:00 pm

    Yeah, that’s about right. I’ve put in an additional 512M, so I’m now running on 1 gb. That has helped tremendously.

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