I'm considering moving to Vista premium
I would like to upgrade my desktop and am considering moving to Vista premium.
I am not confident that Vista is a stable op sys yet so have been putting off the rebuild. The articles I have read are not very positive. There seems to be a general feeling that it might be wise to wait for the first so called SP.
How have you found Vista so far Marvin?
Ken in Regina
Hi Ed,

For the record, I have been a computer professional for over thirty years and I've been using personal computers since the late 70's. I've used every personal computer operating system since CP/M and MS-DOS 1.1, and including Macs and Unix/Linux.

I am a hard-core XP user. My desktops will stay on XP until they pull them from my stone-cold hands. Just want to set the record straight on my biases.

I bought a new laptop this fall. It came with Vista Home Premium. I find nothing compelling about it. It does nothing better than XP. It does a few things not as well as XP. And it is much much MUCH more annoying than XP.

The key statement there is that it does nothing better than XP.

Given that it does nothing better than XP I have to wonder why anyone would voluntarily put themselves through the hassles of installing a new operating system. Having gone through those hassles you have no improvements in any way. And now you have to live with those things you may like less than XP and those things that will surely annoy you much more than XP.

One of those things I like less ... far less ... is the new Mail and Contacts application. Actually these represent something larger that I mostly find annoying rather than an improvement.

For background, I have been using Outlook Express for my email and its built-in Address Book for all my contacts for many years. I continue to use them because I like them. If you use them and you use them because you like them, you will hate the new Vista Mail and Contacts. Here's why.

In Vista, Microsoft has tried to make all of the utilities and other built-in stuff look exactly like the Windows Explorer (the file manager). For a few applications, like the file manager, it works okay. For some it just doesn't work. I just can't wrap my head around using a file manager interface for doing email and contacts. Nor for some of the other built-in stuff, like network setup and management and a variety of other things.

The thing that will absolutely annoy you ... and I've yet to meet or hear from anyone who is not annoyed by it ... is the user account control (UAC). It constantly stops you and asks you if you really want to do what you have asked Vista to do. Then, having asked you if you really want to do it it pops yet another dialogue and asks if you're really really sure. It does this at the drop of a hat.

There's more. Some of what annoys me might not bother you, either because you don't do it or because it simply fits you better. And some of the stuff I haven't noticed may bug you a lot.

There were a number of my prefered applications that don't have Vista-specific versions, and won't ever, so I had some problems getting them installed. Some were relatively easy to get working and a couple I just had to decide to live without.

On the positive side, I haven't noticed any big performance issues. Everything I've run so far seems to run about the same under Vista as it does under XP. Most of the whining about the horsepower required to use Vista is blown way out of proportion. I ran a beta version on one of my desktop systems and it ran just fine, even though that system was way underpowered by the comments of many of the pundits.

I don't do anything that is seriously compute-intensive so I am not taxing Vista at all. Anyone into serious gaming is having real performance problems. There is supposed to be a bit of a performance increase with the Vista service pack (SP1) but most testers are saying that it's very minor.

Unless there is something you very specifically know that you want or need with Vista, I would simply wait until you either (a) have to buy a new system, which will likely come with Vista anyway, or (b) have a compelling need for something about Vista that will cause you to want or need it badly enough that you know it's worth putting up with anything you don't like about it.

Do NOT upgrade to Vista if you don't have a really compelling reason to do it.

In my opinion, of course. I will be quite interested in reading Marvin's reaction to it.

Marvin Hlavac
I agree that it's better to stay with XP, unless one has a really good compelling reason to upgrade to Vista. If I were to buy a new PC, I would likely want it to come with Vista, but my existing PCs (old hardware) will stay XP. I switched only one of my PCs to Vista - my mobile PC . I wanted to make S&T Keys work with Vista - that was my reason.

Some 10 years ago I was eager to switch to new operating systems, to try new stuff, etc. Nowadays I have less time and interest in it. Switching old computers to new OS usually represents frustration with device drivers and application programs.
I had to replace my old Windows ME desktop machine with a new computer and I bought one with Vista Home Premium. I immediately disabled all the eye-candy and after several weeks of hassle most of my programs now work, some parts of them may not work but I have used some work arounds. The biggest problems are with my two scanners which do not have, and never will have, Vista drivers. Fortunately my laptop is an XP machine.

I meant to mention that I use Pegasus Mail so the change to Microsoft Mail doesn't bother me
Ken in Regina
You're in pretty good shape. Almost anything is an improvement over ME.

I skipped it entirely. I waited and waited and eventually went straight from 98SE to XP/SP1. I won't move my desktops to Vista until about SP3. I don't even have to worry about one of them dying and replacing it. I'll build the new one myself and load XP Pro.

My scanner doesn't even have XP drivers from the manufacturer, that's how old it is. But the generic driver in XP works great with it so I got lucky.

Happy computing with the new machine. If you've killed the eye candy and UAC and have the important stuff working, you'll be happy with Vista.

Eric Lee Elliott
Bless you B. Gates. Your new Vista was just what I needed. It has made my life better, eliminated virus & malware from my life & reduced my computing costs. Even my Internet connection is better thru Sierra AC 875 cellular modem. Att connection manager no longer wrecks my connections thru Sierra card.
At first I did not like Vista, my new Thinkpad with Vista Home Premium kept crashing, never could update it thru Lenovo or M$. BSOD ended each update attempt. Battery life was short, fans noisy, hibernation failed, sleep stopped some ports till next reboot. Making a system restore disk failed.

Soon it got better. A second new Thinkpad had same problems then I found the answer. Just start Thinkpad & wait, not even sign in, just wait for it to crash in less than an hour. That was the answer I needed. A clean install of Kubuntu stopped all the failures, got rid of anti-malware, rid of anti-virus, rid of unreadable pastel text on pastel background & added direct connection to Internet thru ATT & Sierra card without ATT connection software.
Thinkpad is now crash free, cooler, quieter & has every software I need except mapping software with GPS.
One minor problem is fingerprint reader does not work with Linux, could be a hardware issue because it did not work in Vista either.
My Epson Stylus 7800 printer scanner prints better in Linux, better color shading, Scan software is easier to configure for legible copies of old documents.
Bill spent many $millions to get me out of Windiz & keep me out.
Thanks Bill.
Ken in Regina
Originally Posted by Eric Lee Elliott
Bill spent many to get me out of Windiz & keep me out.
Eric, that's WinDoze.

If you're gonna trash Uncle Bill you have to spell his product name correctly.

Y'er welcome.

Marvin Hlavac
Eric, can you run your DeLorme Street Atlas + GPS (or any Windows program) on Kubuntu?
Eric Lee Elliott
If you want to do updates without attracting malware by running MSIE, it is Windiz. http://windowsupdate.62nds.com/. Running XP, I repeatedly went 2 months without virus or other malware, until I clicked the info button in SA'7. SA (Street Atlas) would then open MSIE for about 20 seconds till I noticed it was MSIE open, rather than my usual Firefox browser. Next malware scan would find a couple infections.
Eric Lee Elliott
Yes, directly with WINE.
Windiz programs, Windiz operating systems from MSDOS to Vista & other OSs can run in Linux. Wine, VirtualBox, CrossOver are 3 ways to run Windiz programs & Mac programs on Linux.
Wine lets Windiz applications run on Linux directly but safely. CrossOver is a commercial extension of WINE.
Virtual box seems to have windiz built in (got to read more of it) and runs Windiz programs plus others.
VM ware runs on Linux as a host for many other operating systems. When Windiz runs on VM ware, Windiz does not know it is in a virtual machine, does not know it is just another program running.
I am slowly looking for a web describing how some person has made a good GPS mapping software run in VirtualBox but 2 things may happen. 1, I may buy VM Ware, load XP in it & load CoPilot 10 in XP. 2, I may get enough interest to learn how to make VB work for CoPilot 10.
Any one already done it?
Marvin Hlavac
Perhaps now that many people are buying the inexpensive Linux based laptop, Asus Eee, some people will join the forum to tell us their experiences with trying to run Windows GPS programs on it . I'd love to hear some success stories .
Thanks to all of you who answered.

I have ordered Vista Premium upgrade.
I remember the discussions when XP first came out and the disapointments and difficulties some had upgrading from 98 or 2000 to XP. I also had some problems but fortunately had the advantage of having a computer whiz for a neighbor who steered me through.
There was a good buy on the upgrade, which was sold out. I will hang onto the upgrade, if it ships, and wait till things get to the point that Vista is smoothed out.

Thanks again
Originally Posted by Eric Lee Elliott
If you want to do updates without attracting malware by running MSIE, it is Windiz. WindizUpdate. Running XP, I repeatedly went 2 months without virus or other malware, until I clicked the info button in SA'7. SA (Street Atlas) would then open MSIE for about 20 seconds till I noticed it was MSIE open, rather than my usual Firefox browser. Next malware scan would find a couple infections.
That makes me wonder - was this with the system up to date with Windows patches, antivirus installed / active / up to date, and anti-malware up to date and immunization applied? Although I rarely use Windows on my home setup anymore, I have no issues running Internet Exploiter (I have very little other than MS Streets & Trips on my Windows setup anyway).

It may well be that you have a rootkit on that computer - it is a new class of malware that successfully hides from some antivirus / antimalware apps. I'd backup, nuke and reload that PC if I were you.
I've got one question with Vista. My laptop came with Vista home premium. I installed Streets & Trips 2009. It worked fine for a few times I used it, but now I get this message that "your registry settings for this application were not copied correctly, to correct these settings run setup again for this application from the location where you originally installed it". I've tried everything, but seem to get the same results. I can get it to run after I use my System Mechanic software and reboot, but after stop, S&T it goes back to the same problem. I installed Streets & Trips on my desktop, which is XP, and do not have this problem. I was wondering if anyone else has had the same problem and if they have found anything to fix it. Oh also I had to recently reformat my hard drive and reinstall everything. S&T did work find for awhile but went back to the same thing. ANY IDEAS!
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