My Vista Experiances so far!


R

Ryan L. Masanz

I thought it might be helpful to share my thoughts so far. I am working on
the 5365 build currently with the following hardware :

AMD Athlon FX 55, Asus SLI Deluxe Board, 1 Gig ram, Quadro 3400 with the
Apple 30'' Cinema display (@ 2560 x 1600 _, with a second 20'' display.

The Install :

I had to install from an working XP Install and use "Load Driver" to get
it to install on my NVRAID using the latest drivers. At first it would blue
screen with 0x0000007b, however I applied the beta BIOS from Asus and it
installed fine. The install took about 40 minutes, however I do have 4 WD
10,000 RPM Raptors in a RAID 1, so I would have though it would have gone
quicker :) Most of the time seemed to be pulling the data initially from
the DVD.

At this point driver issues are to be expected, installer looks ok sorta
no frills, I like the advanced options area to do a Restore and some basic
checks. Needs some art touch up, looks sorta like it was a quick hack to
piece the look together, I would also assume the "Load Driver" option will
be available in a better location during the boot setup, however it didn't
seem to be working where I found it either. I heard the goal was a 15
minute install, I hope it is !

Initial Impressions:

I had used a very early build, I think after the PDC some years ago,
first thing I noticed is it wasn't "slow", and I didn't have to hunt down a
driver to turn on Glass, it just worked (tm). The first thing I noticed was
the Side Bar. I don't know if I like where it is, or what it looks like,
still iffy on it. I like the way Apples works to be honest. Though, now
that I think about it having a few items on the right hand side is nice.
But I would like to have more hidden from view. The tool that helps you
customize your look when you first load is nice, though I think fading in
and out of the backgrounds would be very nice, and the Task Bar doesn't seem
to pickup background changes right away, so the semi transparent look looks
as if the old background is still behind it.

Start menu:

I like the left side, I don't like the right side. I like the way you
navigate the start menu, I like the search bar/run combo. I do not like the
new "orb" theme going on, seems to early 90s with the "orb icon packs" but
something tells me that decision has been made. On the right side however,
I feel like every time I want to access it, I am reading the whole list to
find what I want. Need some sorta of Icon. Also, on hover the Icon that
appears where your picture is seems to change too slowly. In general, I
think something better could be done with the "look" of it. Seems "boring",
but more functional.

Media Center

Crash Crash Crash... Granted, I love media center, so I am used to early
builds having, well, "Issues". I currently have a custom built media center
running rollup 2 that is working near perfectly, so I trust that team will
get it right. As for the new layout of things, I was very confused at what
was going on, which isn't good - but I have heard they are working on it, so
I will wait to judge.

Explorer

All the screenshots I saw before for previous builds I did not like. This
one is better. It looks good, I LOVE the new address bar, I found myself
using that as primary navigation in a second. I like the view slider,
though I think it should be more accessible, like a visible slider. I
don't like how the folder tree on the left acts, trys to think to much for
me and I cant get where I want to go. I think I like the new status bar,
not sure on that yet.

Glass / Overall Look

Its getting there! It is starting to look good, I have been highly
critical of what I have seen to date, but this is good. Its not there yet,
not at all, but things are going in the right direction. There are still a
few programs that are in pain from the ugly stick (Windows Defender) but
once that falls inline with the "look" of the system, and little things get
fixed here and there, it will feel like a true system.

The main problem to date from the "look" department is continuity. Some
programs simply look like they don't belong (windows defender, sorry its
hideous) and also we need to pick a dialog format, some things still look XP
or 2000 ish, where other things look spiffy and Vista like. Look at the
display properties for an example, changing the background is nice, changing
resolution is XP. Very abrupt style change.

As for Glass itself, Sometimes it looks fantastic, other times, not so
much. It really needs a good background to shine. If it is highly
bright/white- it looks like a bunch of black lines. Explorer Windows need
something in the title bar, and Icon and some text, something, when you have
many open, it is confusing, and it just looks like, well, some things
missing.

The only other issues I have with the "look" is that often things tend to
look washed out, or maybe over exposed. Like the menu bars in everything if
you turn them on, it goes from Light grey to white almost, and say your in
Outlook 2003, or Excel 2003, you cant tell where your supposed to type when
there are boxes in them.

Performance

Everything started out well, then started to fall apart. I need to
restart Glass often, very often. When I do, all is well, for about 20
minutes, then animations start to slow, and widows don't move well, etc. If
I leave my PC on for a few hours I come back to it, I have complete video
lockup with some Diagonal pattern on the screen. I would guess these are
all driver related. I have tried the drivers included in vista for my card,
and also downloaded the latest nvidia ones, the MS ones are much better.

Also, I think my drives haven't stopped churning since I installed. I
would guess this is the indexer and if so, it needs some work, especially
since when I search, it never seems to find anything and constantly tells me
its not done yet.

Vista is a memory hog, and 1 GB isn't enough. Not much else to say :)

Annoyances

UAP - #1 issue. OK idea, happens to much. I like how apple did it, just
copy that :) I like the little shield to show that it is going to do its
thing, but again, happens to much.

In general I am being prompted too much for things I started or clicked
on. " Are you sure you clicked the mouse". Needs work and more thought.

Odd Delay in boot, right before the little white bar would go across the
screen, takes about 10 seconds, then it loads.

Programs:

VS2005, Photoshop, SQL2005 all installed fine and seem to be working.
Napster installs, however DRM is broken which I expected.
Nero has issues

That is enough typing for now. I was hoping to use this build as my day to
day, but I cant yet it isn't cooked enough for me :) But I see great
progress - I hope this wasn't a meaningless rant to everyone :)

Thanks!

Ryan
 
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Z

Zack Whittaker

I'm really glad you're having a relatively good experience so far :blush:) My
suggestion, is to send the beta guys a bit of feedback :blush:) Let them know
what you think, and boost their confidence a bit!

Bug reporting/suggestion sending:
http://www.vistabase.co.uk/welcome.php?bugreport

Direct to Sentiments:
http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=55160

--
Zack Whittaker
» ZackNET Enterprises: www.zacknet.co.uk
» MSBlog on ResDev: www.msblog.org
» Vista Knowledge Base: www.vistabase.co.uk
» This mailing is provided "as is" with no warranties, and confers no
rights. All opinions expressed are those of myself unless stated so, and not
of my employer, best friend, Ghandi, my mother or my cat. Glad we cleared
that up!

--: Original message follows :--
 
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R

Ryan L. Masanz

It has been rather good, I was expecting a lot worse based on recent
articles. It is very close to being usable for day to day work. I am
excited and I am not so patiently waiting for Beta 2!

I will send in my comments,

Ryan
 

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