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Is Vista the New OS/2? 296

Posted by Cliff
from the vista-wishes-it-had-os/2's-guts dept.
An anonymous reader asks: "Well after the long torturous wait, Vista is finally out. Is it just me or do others see similarities between Vista and the OS/2 launch back in the '80's? I mean you need new hardware to run the new OS (Just like OS/2). Even on the best '386 system OS/2 still ran like a dog. Older apps sometimes didn't work (DOS penalty box). And most important, what was the compelling reason to upgrade? Add to this an interview I saw with Ballmer, some time ago, where he was talking about how he knew OS/2 was doomed when IBM kept talking about OS/2's KLOC's (thousands of lines of code), and how bloated OS/2 was. Now I see an interview with him where he talks about how great Vista is due to the, yes you guessed it, the KLOC's of code in it. So is Vista going to see the same fate as OS/2?" This is kind of a hard sell seeing that Vista has Microsoft's might behind it, rather than against it. Still, how long do you think it would take a good percentage of computer users (say 80+%) to migrate to Microsoft's latest and greatest OS?
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Is Vista the New OS/2?

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  • I've tried it... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by pfraser (651313) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:06AM (#17407766) Homepage
    As a Technet subscriber I've had access to Vista for a while now. I've loaded it onto my PC, I've tried it out, and I personally won't be switching. Microsoft's stubborn belief that they know how I want to use my computer - not the other way around - has meant that I'll now sit down and spend the time to get an installation of an alternative OS working. Hopefully that means I won't have to use it at all, right?

    Wrong.

    Unfortunately however (and I'm sure many of you have already witnessed this) I work in a rather large org (Government, in fact) which is dominated by those who say "new is better", and are already putting into action plans to upgrade our fleets of PCs to Vista.

    No matter what comparisons people make to OS' of past, Vista is here to stay. Why? Because it's a Microsoft product. And 'The Big People' want Microsoft products, whatever it means.

    Maybe that'll change in five or ten years, but I don't see it happening any time soon.
    • I have not tried it (Score:5, Interesting)

      by pogson (856666) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:45AM (#17407946) Homepage Journal
      I have no need to try Vista. I switched to GNU/Linux years ago and it just works. This year, I designed and installed a new computer system in a new school. After the dust settled, it is working trouble free. In the logs I get to see all the viruses detected at the firewall on the way to a few legacy Windows machines. As long as Windows architecture exists, it will always be prone to ownership by malware. Combine that with Treacherous Computing and you have less reliability.

      I have discussed computing with several organizations that stick to "Wintel" and it is so sad that they believe there is any benefit or need to avoid the competitive market place. I switched 500 users to Linux with a brief intro and a few follow-up consultations. The cost to switch was much less than the cost of obtaining Windows. In fact, we have twice as many clients as the tiny budget I inherited would allow with Windows, considering server licences and per-seat licences. Our maintenance costs are astronomically lower as we use thin clients on LTSP. Future upgrades will be cheaper, too as the thin clients will last longer and only the terminal servers need upgrading.

      I suspect many will avoid Vista in business but eventually, those who do not convert to GNU/Linux will be pressured by XP/2000 end-of-support. Unfortunately, consumers will likely soon only be able to buy machines with Vista aboard unless they are smart enough to seek out systems without an OS or with Linux installed. There are more of these all the times as Linux has entered the mainstream, but for a few years more, it will take a special effort to avoid Windows and the common user will not make that effort unless given a push. Fortunately, year after year, I have found more people have heard of Linux or seen it and are willing to consider it.

      I am most familiar with schools. Some have converted to Linux out of desperation to try and wrestle IT to the ground with a limited budget. Others have converted because a few visionaries identified Linux as a good thing and led the way. Schools can easily avoid lock-in because the bulk of users are students and teachers who use the web and office suites to gather and process information. OpenOffice just works with browsers and clipboards to do most tasks. Linux is superb for computer science/information processing. It is a small number of graying IT managers and administrators who are holding back adoption of Linux in schools. The taxpayers have to be more assertive in demanding FLOSS in schools. The taxpayers should demand that Windows be kicked out of schools just as they would demand drug dealers be kicked off school grounds. Most curricula have not specified Windows and many curricula suggest more use of IT in classrooms, so there is continuing pressure on budgets. My school has a cluster of terminals in every classroom. Schools with Windows rarely can afford that.

      • by michrech (468134) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @08:45AM (#17408160)
        The taxpayers should demand that Windows be kicked out of schools just as they would demand drug dealers be kicked off school grounds.

        I can tell you this isn't going to happen. Know why? Those same tax payers are using Windows at home.

        How expensive can it be for the school? I mean, XP came with their PC for FREE. Don't the schools pay the same price?

        (Yes, I know Windows is added into the cost of the PC, and the OEM's get it for reduced costs but the tax payers, for the most part, don't, so their perceptions will be different from ours)
        • by westlake (615356)
          I can tell you this isn't going to happen. Know why? Those same tax payers are using Windows at home.

          ---and everywhere else they use a computer as well.

          Which is why the school offers evening classes in Windows for seniors, certification programs in Office for those with physical disabilities, etc., etc.

          In our very strained rustbelt economy, these skills are marketable at any age, your ticket out of welfare, a lesson everyone has learned but the Geek on the Big State U Campus.

        • by aaronl (43811)
          If you want a really interesting view of exactly how much MS slashes pricing to con schools into force-feeding its software, take a look at "www.asap.com". If you go around in there, you will find a link to government and educational pricing. Things like a CAL for $2 and copies of Office Pro for $60.

          So *NO*, schools definitely don't pay the same price!
      • by dc29A (636871)
        As long as Windows architecture exists, it will always be prone to ownership by malware.

        You obviously have no clue about the "Windows architecture" and Windows security. Here is a starter [microsoft.com].

        Windows architecture is secure, in many places like file security it even surpasses Linux. Yes, secure. Just because some clueless users run everything as administrator doesn't make Windows less secure. The problem with Windows security is not Windows, it's the people who use it. Run (insert random OS here) as root/Adminis
        • by mr_death (106532)
          You've got to be kidding. Take a look at the count of critical updates for XP this year.

          Windows "security", such as it is, blows dead goats.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by syusuf (91554)
      > No matter what comparisons people make to OS' of past, Vista is here to stay.
      > Why? Because it's a Microsoft product.
      > And 'The Big People' want Microsoft products, whatever it means.

      Sort of reminiscent of the "nobody ever got fired for buying IBM" line, isn't it?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Dunbal (464142)
      I work in a rather large org (Government, in fact) which is dominated by those who say "new is better", and are already putting into action plans to upgrade our fleets of PCs to Vista.

            Nice to know that our tax dollars are going to be spent in such a rational way. Because DRM is very important for a government computer. So is Aero, I assume. God forbid they ran their stuff on an older OS that just didn't have these new features... /sarcasm
    • by Aladrin (926209)
      "Microsoft's stubborn belief that they know how I want to use my computer - not the other way around"

      You know how they want to use your computer? Err...
      They how your computer wants to use you? Err...

      I'm pretty sure you mean 'they don't know how you want to use your computer'... But I couldn't resist ;) Besides which, they DO know that. They just want to market to all the the non-techies that don't know what a computer can do and would never think to try.
    • by uncoveror (570620)
      I tried the RC1 version. It had some pretty eye candy, but nothing I needed. I think it will confuse people trying to shut down when they go to the start button, and find there way to a picture that looks like a power button. When they click it, the computer only goes to sleep. Shut down in in a deeper menu still. That was only one of many things I didn't like. If I had the choice, I would have stayed with Windows 2000 forever.
  • Why do you care? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by pembo13 (770295) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:13AM (#17407806) Homepage

    Unless you stand to make money of Vista, as opposed to no Vista. I really don't see why you care. If you're still using Windows, chances are Windows XP does all you need. If Windows XP doesn't have all you need, now may be a good time to dual boot with Linux, or switch to a Mac.

    I've seen Vista in use, and all I can says is "looks like KDE". Of course the reason for this is that many KDE themes have long since copied many aspects of the Aero theme.

    All these Vista articles are getting to be annoying, and there seems to be no way to turn them off.

    • by hahiss (696716) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @01:23PM (#17409776) Homepage
      Two comments:

      1) You don't have to read every article that shows up on slashdot! (See the headline, look for the word Vista, make sure it isn't referring to a view, and skip the article. Easy-peasy.)

      2) There are some good reasons for people to be pissing and moaning about Vista repeatedly here on Slashdot:

          (a) Many people on Slashdot work where upgrades to Vista are looming large.
          (b) Many of THOSE people will be in charge of having to run the migration.
          (c) Other slashdot users buy computers, and frequently these computers have Microsoft OSes installed on them; if they plan on buying a computer in the next few years (esp. a laptop), then it will likely have Vista on it. Even if they wipe the drive and install OpenBSD, they'll likely be on the hook for free support for their family and friends.
          (d) There's not much going on with SCO or Jack Thompson right now; the Wii vs. PS3 vs XBOX360 battle has cooled; and OMG Ponies!!! isn't for another 4 months.

      3) Just so you don't think I'm being a total jerk: yeah, I agree, there is only so much one can read about how Vista is teh sux0rs. Perhaps slashdot should pose an ask slashdot of the "What is the best car analogy for Vista?" and call it a day.
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by petrus4 (213815)
        From my own observation, there are (very) broadly three major types of computer/IT users represented on Slashdot:-

        1) Windows BOFHs. (for want of a better term) Prolly the largest group from what I've seen. These guys know that in order to look cool on here they have to write about how Microsoft are hell-spawned evil and about how Vista is going to suck, when in reality they're likely to secretly be creaming their pants in anticipation for it. They also try and make out that they think Linux is awesome (ag
        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          4) Mac Users. They are opposed to Windows and anything Microsoft tainted, but don't really understand the fuss over Linux :)
          They comment usually to gloat and troll.

          -WS
  • No (Score:5, Informative)

    by bwoodring (101515) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:13AM (#17407812)
    To rebut your points: 1. Vista runs extremely well on any modern PC. You may need a video card to get a composite desktop, but I bet people who don't know enough to get a real video card won't care anyway. 2. Vista may not be revolutionary, but it's a clear improvement over XP. It's better looking, more polished and overall a much nicer experience. 3. Almost nobody is going to "buy" Vista. Very few people "bought" XP either. It just makes more sense to get it preloaded. 4. The drivers and other compatibility issues will be ironed out quickly. Right now Vista seems exotic, but it 3-6 months it will be standard on all new desktops. Software and hardware vendors will get on the bus quickly. I didn't run any of the betas or RCs, but I downloaded it from my MSDN account as soon as it came out and I've been impressed. It's probably not 5 full years worth of work, but it's good.
    • Re:No (Score:5, Informative)

      by TheRaven64 (641858) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:40AM (#17407928) Journal
      OS/2 was a big improvement over Windows 3.x in many, many ways. It ran Windows 3.x applications, but it also ran 32-bit ones. It had pre-emptive multitasking and protected memory, so badly behaved Win16 applications couldn't break the whole system.

      So, why didn't people buy it? Well, at the time, a single seat license for OS/2 was around £500, and a computer was around £1000. Unlike Windows Vista, no one was selling machines with OS/2 pre-installed with a big OEM discount (IBM were trying to sell PCs, so they weren't really pushing other people to license OS/2). Given the choice between Windows for around £50, or OS/2 for around £500, people went with Windows. OS/2 was better, but it wasn't ten times better.

      • by Sique (173459)

        Unlike Windows Vista, no one was selling machines with OS/2 pre-installed with a big OEM discount (IBM were trying to sell PCs, so they weren't really pushing other people to license OS/2).

        This is not entirely true. In Germany one of the at the time largest vendor of PC equipment (Vobis Highscreen) was selling OS/2 3.0 preinstalled, and the other big one (Escom) at least offered OS/2 as optional bundle, if I remember correctly.

        This gave OS/2 about 8 months head start to Windows 95, and even in 1998 there we

        • In Germany one of the at the time largest vendor of PC equipment (Vobis Highscreen) was selling OS/2 3.0 preinstalled, and the other big one (Escom) at least offered OS/2 as optional bundle, if I remember correctly.

          It was possible to get OS/2 pre-installed, or as an optional extra, but it was expensive. While Microsoft offer(ed) large OEM discounts, IBM didn't, so you paid close to the retail price for OS/2 even if you were shipping thousands of copies. That made it a lot more expensive when considering buying a few thousand desktops.

        • by TykeClone (668449)
          Around 1995, I believe that OS/2 worked natively with AS/400's as well. Windows PC's had to use a funky client to get a terminal screen.
      • by RAMMS+EIN (578166)
        ``Given the choice between Windows for around £50, or OS/2 for around £500, people went with Windows. OS/2 was better, but it wasn't ten times better.''

        You heretic! Saying that IBM killed OS/2, instead of Microsoft. Fie! ;-)
      • Given the choice between Windows for around £50, or OS/2 for around £500, people went with Windows. OS/2 was better, but it wasn't ten times better.

        Interesting. Because Vista is, say, $300(?) and Linux is $0. So, by your calculations, is Vista infinitely better? ;-)
        • No. Windows comes on almost every computer, so effectively it's free (in that you won't save money by installing another OS). Linux, on the other hand, takes time to install. Time is certainly not free. It also takes more training, which is again, not free.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by Osty (16825)

      It's probably not 5 full years worth of work, but it's good.

      That would be because Vista/Longhorn wasn't being worked on for five continuous years. The Longhorn reset [windowsvistaweblog.com] essentially restarted the clock on Vista around mid-2004. That means Vista as it ships really represents only the last 2.5 years of work, not the full 5 years since XP RTM. In between was Windows Server 2003, XP SP2 (which really could've been a full OS release rather than a service pack), 2003 SP1, and a fair amount of Longhorn work tha

    • by Anonymous Coward
      I bet people who don't know enough to get a real video card won't care anyway.

      Amazing. Because someone doesn't wish to spend $300+ for a card makes them 'unknowing'?

      Some of us don't care about running video games...we don't have time.
      • by Blkdeath (530393)

        I bet people who don't know enough to get a real video card won't care anyway.

        Amazing. Because someone doesn't wish to spend $300+ for a card makes them 'unknowing'?

        Some of us don't care about running video games...we don't have time.

        Somebody mod this A.C. up. I run an old Radeon 9200 Pro myself because it was cheap when I got it. I have a ${several thousand} home theatre in the next room with an XBox connected to it so I have no desire to run games on my PC. Why should I spend $300 (or even $200) on a new video card to run my desktop?

      • Because you don't seem to know what's needed. Vista does not need a $300 graphics card to do it's desktop compositing. It needs a graphics card that has two things:

        1) Shader model 2.0 or better hardware support.
        2) A WDDM driver for it.

        So what cards fit the bill? From nVidia, any video card that's a GeForce 5200FX or newer, from ATi, any card that's a 9500 or newer. That includes low end cards like the X300 and integrated cards like the 6120. Also, the latest Intel integrated cards, the GMA950s, fit the bill
        • Wrong. I have a system on my desk with integrated graphics that was bought about 6 months ago. Entry-level 2.ghz Pentium IV. 80gb hard drive. The thing's lightning fast on XP. (Of course it helps that the fellow I borrowed it from never used it, and I only use it for compatibility testing, so it has no malware on it).

          Vista's upgrade advisor laughs at it and says it's fated to run Vista Basic, forever. And that only if I upgrade the memory from 512mb to 1gb.

          D
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by argStyopa (232550)
      I'm not going to disagree with your conclusion, but it's interesting that in your entire list, there's absolutely nothing there that's convincing in any real way.

      "1. Vista runs extremely well on any modern PC. You may need a video card to get a composite desktop, but I bet people who don't know enough to get a real video card won't care anyway."
      Well, that depends on how you define 'modern', doesn't it? I mean, most people would consider PCs bought within the last couple of years 'modern', yet a recent (Inf
      • by PixieDust (971386)
        1. My desktop (3 years old) run Vista flawlessly. 90+% of machines I've seen on retail shelves in recent months will run it just fine. Probably 80% of retail systems in the last year and a half to two years will also run it just fine. No high end graphics card needed. Aero runs quite well with a decent integrated video solution. Overstating Vista's hardware demands doesn't make you cooler.

        2. XP doesn't have extremely detailed, well designed parental controls. XP doesn't have Aero. XP doesn't have bit lock

    • To rebut your points:

      1. Vista runs extremely well on any modern pc
      As long as that pc is really high-end, bleeding edge, give us all your money hella expensive, yes. But any business pc I've seen in the last year (that's modern, i guess) won't run Vista all that well.

      2. It's better looking, more polished and overall a much nicer experience
      Windows 2000 is better looking than XP, with its Teletubby pasture and Fisher-Price color scheme. You might think of computing as an "experience", I just want to g

      • You can spend fifteen seconds looking at tech site after tech site which has discovered (surprise!) that Vista runs just fine on machines that are several years old. I know it's a point of pride here to not tell the truth about the most recent OS from Microsoft, but, really, why do people bother to tell easily refuted lies?
        • If you read those tech sites, or even http://hardware.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/11 / 10/1847244 [slashdot.org], you will see that to run Vista in its intended glory, you have to have at least 1 Gig of ram and a very decent GPU. So, yes, many (if not most) gamer and enthousiast rigs will run Vista.

          How many business PC's will run Vista? I don't know where you work, but the 6500 pc's at the company I work for have 256 Mb and NO gpu to speak of. While these machines might technically run Vista it won't be usable at all

          • You're either willfully stupid or willfully deceptive. Go read, say, Ed Bott's evaluation of Vista on low-end machines. Like the g^n gp said, you won't get Aero, but you'll still get everything else. In fact, if you go back to the 2K-like version of the shell UI, you won't even know you're running Vista, even from a perf perspective. (Except that Vista may be very slightly faster, and you'll have to put up with IE7.)

            Go back under your bridge, troll.
            • I love you too... (Score:4, Insightful)

              by MrBoombasticfantasti (593721) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @04:01PM (#17411148)
              From Ed Bott:

              Memory: 2GB (four 512MB DDR-PC2700 DIMMs, upgraded from original 512MB configuration)
              Display adapter: ATI Radeon 9600, 256MB, AGP8X (upgraded from original Nvidia 128MB card)

              I may be stupid or deceptive, but 2GB and a 9600 is *NOT* mainstream. Therefore you do not get a really good "experience", just as you say yourself.

              [...] if you go back to the 2k-like version of the shell UI, you won't even know you're running Vista, even from a perf perspective.

              Now there is a compelling argument to upgrade...

              • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

                Ah, at least you looked. Of course, there's a little more to the original Bott article [zdnet.com] than you say:

                What if I had stuck with the stock configuration? That original RAM configuration of 512MB would be OK with Vista

                and

                I've tried Windows Vista on systems that are considerably older than this one, with equally good results. For instance, I have one 2002-vintage system with similar upgrades (including a new CPU) that is running Windows Vista Ultimate Edition with the full Aero interface just fine.

                I notice you o

      • by westlake (615356)
        On MS payroll much?

        This wins points only within the hermetically sealed Geek forums like Slashdot.

    • by Quarters (18322)
      You probably won't even need a new video card. I was running the Aero Glass desktop enhancements on a P4 with an onboard Intel graphics (915) chipset during the Vista beta. As long as the card can do DirectX w/ shader model 2.0 or later it will run Aero without a problem. Any machine purchased in the last two to three years will be more than adequate to run Vista.

      The only reason one of those machines would need a new video card is if the owner wants to run DirectX 10 games. Since no DX10 capable cards or

  • Seriously (Score:5, Insightful)

    by rolfwind (528248) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:18AM (#17407838)
    Vista will be a "success" simply because it comes pre-loaded with all new PCs and releases like this will keep the corps buying the steady income support licenses from MS.

    It is MS's game to screw up and that ain't happening soon. (Though I prefer Ubuntu and that Windows has truly become a little bitch to run at home, the OS itself bringing up more pop-ups of various types than some of the worst websites - asking every 3 minutes for input over some bullshit.)
    • by bit01 (644603)

      Vista will be a "success" simply because it comes pre-loaded with all new PCs and releases like this will keep the corps buying the steady income support licenses from MS.

      This is a self-fulfilling prophecy [wikipedia.org].

      Vista may or may not be a "success", depending on how you define success, but assuming an expectation that "everybody will be using vista" means "using vista too to be compatible and take advantage of network effects". ie. buying.

      M$ marketing is currently doing everything they can to create that p

  • by martin (1336) <maxsec@gmail.cDEGASom minus painter> on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:24AM (#17407866) Journal
    Question is how long will M$ let hardware vendors (Dell, HP, IBM) etc ship XP rather than one of the mirriad of Vista versions???

    I bet in 6 months you'll have severe difficulty finding a new PC with XP on it...

    another 6 months and you'll have problems finding XP on the shelves.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by kjart (941720)

      I bet in 6 months you'll have severe difficulty finding a new PC with XP on it...

      This, at least, is a non-issue. Buying a new PC in 6 months will eliminate the major reasons for wanting to keep XP: a) compatibility (I'm sure most of the major issues would be ironed out in that time) and b) needing a new computer to run it well (this is probably a myth to a certain extent but, duh, you're buying a new computer).

      For those who aren't buying a new computer, though, I tend to agree - it's not a compelling up

      • by liam193 (571414) *

        I bet in 6 months you'll have severe difficulty finding a new PC with XP on it...

        This, at least, is a non-issue. Buying a new PC in 6 months will eliminate the major reasons for wanting to keep XP: a) compatibility (I'm sure most of the major issues would be ironed out in that time) and b) needing a new computer to run it well (this is probably a myth to a certain extent but, duh, you're buying a new computer).

        For those who aren't buying a new computer, though, I tend to agree - it's not a compelling upgrade. However, that doesn't mean that most people are going to switch to Apple/Linux/etc - those without a need to upgrade are most likely content with what they have (probably Windows XP).

        So, is this doom and gloom for Vista? Almost certainly not. It wont be long before new PC's come with Vista (new computers from Dell, etc already come with the upgrade option) and I'm sure that's where Microsoft makes all it's money anyways.

        Actually this is one of the worst things about the upgrade cycles. The purchase of a new PC for anyone who is a low-end user should occur in the next 3-6 months or should be put on for a few years. Just like when XP was released, the ability of those actually "fixing" the computers to be able to walk someone through a fix will be significantly reduced. For example, as one who does help fix things from time to time, I still have to turn on the "classic view" in an XP control panel to find things because

        • by kjart (941720)

          Imagine this situation. You buy a new PC for your parents for Christmas next year and it ships with Vista. Your PC is still XP. Mom calls and can't figure out why her printer isn't working. You tell her to click here then here... She says, I don't see that. You end up having to make a trip when a phone call used to fix the problem.

          Out of all the possibilities, I don't really think that being unable to help your mother is a compelling reason to dislike Vista (feel free to disagree). In cases like this, tho

    • by westlake (615356)
      Question is how long will M$ let hardware vendors (Dell, HP, IBM) etc ship XP rather than one of the mirriad of Vista versions???

      The right question to ask is whether customers will opt for the legacy XP install when they are ready to upgrade to Vista-certified hardware and can get Vista installed at the OEM price.

      The right question to ask ---if you are in direct sales or big box retail-- is how long XP will remain mass-market.

  • by crhylove (205956) <rhy@leperkhanz.com> on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:29AM (#17407892) Homepage Journal
    ...right as soon as it runs as fast and as clean as TinyXP. It's not that MS can't make a decent OS, TinyXP in a round about way proves that they can. A lot of people I know stayed on Win 2000 over XP for a long time for the same reasons.

    Who can blame them?

    Now, if ReactOS continues to improve and evolve, I'll lay wagers that it will succeed XP on some of my machines in another year or two.

    That is, unless someone actually comes up with a new game that I absolutely have to have, which judging by the releases of the past few years, they won't, and furthermore, if they do, will it really REQUIRE vista? If the answer is still no....

    rhY
  • Lines of code (Score:4, Interesting)

    by eric76 (679787) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @07:46AM (#17407954)
    I remember reading an article in about 1992 or so in which Bill Gates compared measuring programming productivity to measuring progress in building aircraft by how much weight was added to the aircraft.
    • by Kjella (173770)
      Well, LoCs isn't a perfect measure but it's not terrible either - Sure some programmers unnecessary long and complex code and it's easy to produce extra LoCs on command, but they're also a pretty good indicator for when I'm stuck. If I suddenly progrma half the LoCs I usually do, it probably means I got stuck on some hard problem, maybe had to rewrite or refactor some code, redesign some data models or data flow. It is certainly much more likely than that I found a shortcut and got a lot done with few lines
      • If I suddenly progrma half the LoCs I usually do, it probably means I got stuck on some hard problem, maybe had to rewrite or refactor some code, redesign some data models or data flow.

        Which means that you are just as productive as before. kLocs is indicative of many things, but productivity is not one of them.

  • by mgemmons (972332) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @08:02AM (#17407994) Homepage
    I find very few similarities between the launches of the two operating systems, or at least none of which can't be also attributed to the launch of any new OS. Vista does not require new hardware to run. Sure, if you have a 10 year old computer the odds of you getting it up and running is unlikely, but the same could be said if you had a 10 year old Mac and tried to run OS X on it. Of course, I will leave Linux out of this particular point because it probably would run on a 10-year-old computer ;).

    The argument that older apps won't work on Vista is false. Vista is backwards compatible with older software, including DOS apps.

    What is the compelling reason to upgrade? If you are already running Windows I think it is very compelling to upgrade. Vista gets a lot of bad press, deservedly so some of it, because the UI borrows from other successful operating systems and some functionality too, but there is a lot to love under its hood if you are willing to look at the OS as a new one are willing to learn rather than trying to use it just as you do XP. Here are a few of my favorites new pieces of functionality:

    The new copy functionality that pushes all copy issues to the end of the queue so that all "are you sure?", "unable to copy file, rety?", etc come after every copyable file has been done rather than randomly as in XP.

    Speaking of copying...you can see additional useful information when copying files such as the xfer speed in mb/s.

    We are finally done with the C:\Documents and Settings directory structure and have a more reasonable C:\Users directory. The Documents and Settings folder always annoyed the hell out of me.

    Bread-crumb-like links for directory paths when browsing through folders. So, I can type C:\User\Administrator\My Documents\Backups\2005\Expenses\IBM\Clients in a folder URI and be taken to that folder. Then be able to click on any word in the URI, like "Administrator" and be taken to that folder.

    64 bit everything! All Vista versions except for Basic come in 32 and 64-bit versions. You get both versions when you buy Vista. So, everyone will have access to the 64-bit version at no extra charge. To pass driver certifications venders must supply both 32 and 64-bit versions of the driver. Being able to have a fully supported 64-bit OS will be nice.

    Security is completely revamped and includes offline and boot-level protection via BitLocker Drive Encryption.

    Searching is thoroughly integrated into the OS. For example, open any folder and you'll see a google-like search toolbar alongside the URI which allows you to instantly filter what you see in that folder. I said any folder and meant it. Open control panel and there is the same Instant Search toolbar on that folder. Or open the "Searches" folder from anywhere and see a bunch of pre-configured searches. Looking at mine I have instant searches for "Shared By Me", "Recently Changed", "Recent Pictures and Videos", "Recent Email", "Recent Documents", "Recent Email Attachments" and "Recent Music". You can of course customize new searches.

    Tags! Tag your pictures with useful information. After a recent trip to Italy I added metadata tags to all the pictures I took there. Now I can do a filter on "Rome" and see all the pics from Rome or "Florence" and see all the pics from there or even search for Rome museums and see all the pictures in Rome that were taken in museums. Tagging metadata is integrated into the OS and any file can be tagged with metadata, not just pictures. Tagging rocks.

    Many new column header controls for folders. For example, looking at my Documents folder I can click on the dropdown for the "Name" column header and choose "Stack By Name". I now see three document stack icons: A-H, I-P, and Q-Z. Clicking on these will take you to those stacks. I'm sure there will be replies that say this or that OS had had that functionality for years, which is fine...there are some great OSes out there. I doubt Vista will win over very many people who are using other OSes anyway. My contention is that if you are running XP, Vista offers everything XP does plus a host of new features (that aren't eye-candy related) that make this OS very much worth the upgrade.
    • by Bert64 (520050)
      How old are the G3 macs?
      I had a 350MHz G3 that ran OSX just fine, 10.3.x went on easily and 10.4.x just needed me to hook up a DVD reader (since the system, being so old, didnt have one by default).
      • by swillden (191260) *

        How old are the G3 macs?

        The first were released in 1998. Not quite ten years ago, but pretty close.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Vengeance (46019)
      The vast majority of what you've presented aren't O/S issues, they are UI issues.

      And that's one of the biggest problems with Windows. There is woefully insufficient distinction between the two.

      • by westlake (615356)
        The vast majority of what you've presented aren't O/S issues, they are UI issues.
        And that's one of the biggest problems with Windows. There is woefully insufficient distinction between the two.

        To the user, the UI is the OS. That is why OSX and Windows split the domestic PC market. The internals of a UNIX or NT based system are of interest only to a Geek.

    • by dosius (230542)
      Ironically, I think Windows NT 3.51 used C:\Users too. Much easier on y'olde fingers.

      -uso.
    • by dhasenan (758719)
      So the compelling reasons are slight UI modifications and tagging? And better 64-bit support. That's compelling. That's $400 worth of compelling, easily.
    • I upgraded one of the machines at work at Vista to find out how it would work with all of our software (we maintain computer labs for a school). The upgrade process went smoothly, surprising the hell out of me. I've been dreading having to create the new Vista templates when we get around to it. There are a bunch of UI improvements which I like. I'm still discovering new things.

      On the other hand -- what the hell is up with the different versions? That bitlocker stuff you mention (which I really like the ide
  • Vista will succeed, for the simple reason that it will come pre-installed on new computers. This alone will give it such penetration that network effects will make it a valuable OS, regardless of its other qualities or misfeatures.

    Another reason why Vista will succeed, while OS/2 failed, is that OS/2 had a big corporation opposing it (Microsoft's heavy advertising of Windows 95 turned eyes away from OS/2 Warp), whereas Vista is supported by that same corporation, and has no opposition of any consequence (on
    • OS/2 had a big corporation opposing it

      And it had an even bigger corporation supporting it! At the time IBM was probably ten to twenty times the size of Microsoft. What doomed OS/2 was that IBM completely screwed its marketing.
  • umm.. no (Score:2, Insightful)

    by morboIV (1040044)
    I'm continually surprised with how out of touch some slashdotters are with reality; they continually parrot what can only be described as FUD. Every review of Vista I've ever read has stated that Vista is a big step up from XP.

    It offers a huge, non-trivial improvement in looks, the search capabilities are vastly improved, the side-bar with gadgets offer handy functionality, networking is substantially improved, easy of use has been polished, security has been strongly increased, new and improved applicatio
    • by joto (134244)
      What? You seriously think the next big operating system release from software "almost-monopolist" Microsoft will become at least moderately successful in the marketplace? You are obviously not properly informed yet. You see, within the next 6 months, every computer user on earth is going to convert to Stallmanism(TM), and make sure their computers only contain GPL-compatible software. Then Vista will fail... Oh yes, it will!
    • by bogie (31020)
      "the search capabilities are vastly improved"

      Already available in XP via MS and Google's current products.

      "the side-bar with gadgets offer handy functionality,"

      Already available in XP from several vendors.

      "new and improved applications"

      Nothing magical here and free applications like Picasa etc are available for XP.

      "networking is substantially improved"

      Probably true, but don't be surprised at the big bugs which come out due to a MS 1.0 product.

      "easy of use has been polished"

      Current XP users will struggle to
  • by eddy (18759) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @08:27AM (#17408086) Homepage Journal
    'Nuff said.
  • More like Windows ME

    "Same as last version, but look its shi... oh crap, it crashed again"
  • As a gamer (Score:2, Informative)

    by kerashi (917149)
    I can say I probably will install Vista when I build my next PC sometime next year. The fact that DX10 won't be available on XP pretty much seals the deal alone, a fact that won't be lost on gamers like me. Now will I be rolling it out across all 4 of my PC's? Would I install it on my current PC? Absolutely not. There is no need, either for myself or for businesses, to go to the expense and hassle when existing Windows XP installations work just fine. But for a new PC, especially a top-end gaming mach
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      "The fact that DX10 won't be available on XP pretty much seals the deal alone, a fact that won't be lost on gamers like me."

      so essentially, microsoft tells you what to do and you do it.

      it's not like you have a choice anyway, since microsoft also tells your computer shop what to do (stop selling windows 2000/XP, don't sell linux) and they do it without question.

      pretty good contrast to freedom-oriented software...
    • by Aladrin (926209)
      As a fellow gamer, I agree. I'll be buying Vista (and a shiny new PC to go with it) when there are enough games to warrant the hassle and expense.

      I did it with the XBox 360 (waited about 9 months) and I'll do it with the PS3 (NOTHING on the horizon yet... Very sad system) also.

      The Wii is my very first launch-console ever. Wii Sports, Excite Truck, Super Swing Golf (not quite launch, but close)... Those alone make it worth the cost. Of course, there were some disappointments like Elebits and Zelda, but
  • OSX? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Nova77 (613150)
    Apparently there is no real alternative to Vista on PCs, and this is why it is likely that it will become a success. But I can't stop wondering what it would happen if Apple makes its OS available to any intel machine. This is probably a good moment for them..
  • Good (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward
    The fundamental difference is that OS/2 was good and Vista is a DRM encrusted piece of crap.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by petrus4 (213815)
      Yes, the unspeakable bogeyman DRM is coming! It's coming for your SOULS! It's coming for your CHILDREN! It will invade your bedroom in the dead of night, rip your still-beating heart from your chest, and feast upon it in front of you! We're all DOOMED! Head for the hills! None other than our new Messiah, the being composed of alabaster light incarnate, Richard Stallman, can save us from this most unholy, hell-spawned menace!
  • by UED++ (1043486) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @09:16AM (#17408278)
    Now is the time for the return of Amiga OS!
  • if only (Score:3, Insightful)

    by oohshiny (998054) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @09:55AM (#17408396)
    OS/2 was a fairly well-designed system for its day. Vista is a haphazardly grown "me too" system that is largely a rip-off of features from OS X, UNIX, and Linux.

    Of course, there are some analogies: OS/2 was slow on the initially available PCs, but it didn't take long for OS/2 to become a nimble alternative to Windows as machines became faster, Windows got more bloated, and OS/2 stayed roughly the same.

    Unlike OS/2, and like previous versions of Windows, Vista will sell: users will have no alternative. If the high pressure sales tactics Microsoft is employing now aren't sufficient, then Microsoft will simply introduce more and more incompatibilities into software and on-line services. So, in the most important respect, Vista is not like OS/2: OS/2 failed because users didn't want it, but what users want or don't want won't make a difference with Vista.

    I don't want Vista, just like I didn't want XP, but I will inevitably end up paying for several copies anyway.
  • Remember, we all fought XP as well. And slowly it crept into being 'required' most everywhere. Between the required upgrade path at work ( MOLPs ) and the dissapearnce of the previous platform from the shelves when you buy a new PC its just a matter of time. The required upgrade to Office2007 will also play into this, which can easily render your documents unreadable on other/older versions.

    Dont forget too that most software makers are in the same boat, if they dont support the new thing they cut off thei
  • I thought Aero runs on 1GB, 1Gz and a DX9 video card. I have a couple four year old computers that comply with that, and several more that are cheaply upgradeable to that or beyond.

    But in general, that may be beside the point, I don't think it's the software upgraders that will get that. It often takes the hardware upgraders that will be the ones that upgrade to new software. I think most people are either cheap or lazy when it comes to their computers, leading to my previous conclusion. Software won't
  • by BlabberMouth (672282) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @11:06AM (#17408722)
    there is no alternative to Vista on new computers as there was for OS/2.
  • KLOC == bloat? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Lord Bitman (95493) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @11:30AM (#17408862) Homepage
    A modern operating system with only "thousands of lines of code"? sounds efficient to me :)
  • by NullProg (70833) on Saturday December 30, 2006 @11:51AM (#17408978) Homepage Journal
    Why are we comparing Rotten eggs to Oranges?

    1) IBM Licensed OS/2 to other vendors (NCR, Compaq, Microsoft, etc). Does Microsoft?
    2) When you purchased OS/2, you owned it. Microsoft wants to police your installation.
    3) OS/2 has a Object Oriented desktop called Workplace Shell. Windows inherits the brain-dead Progman.exe
    4) OS/2 still works on anything from a brand new system down to a P100. Bonus, you don't have to call IBM for permission to install it.
    5) OS/2 Warp 4 had suspend to disk and speech recognition 10 years ago.
    6) IBM uses cool Star Trek names for product descriptions. Microsoft uses a marketing department full of interior designers for its product names.

    There are hundreds of other little things that OS/2 Warp still does better than Windows. Only with Windows 2000 did Microsoft finally release something better than OS/2 Warp. Everything released by Microsoft since then has been step backwards in ease of use and freedom.

    Enjoy,
    • by westlake (615356)
      IBM uses cool Star Trek names for product descriptions. Microsoft uses a marketing department full of interior designers for its product names.

      Star Trek sells an OS to the Geek. Microsoft targets the suburban soccer mom. There are more soccer moms than Geeks.

      Everything released by Microsoft since then has been step backwards in ease of use and freedom.

      Freedom doesn't have the same meaning in Window's core markets as it does to the Geek. Ease of use doesn't have the same meaning in Microsoft's core mark

  • "So is Vista going to see the same fate as OS/2?"

    No. OS/2 died because no one high enough up the corporate command structure lived or died by OS/2's success. The head of personal software was only a VP of a division of the company. Now let's look at Vista. Microsoft's operating system offering is the flagship product that identifies them in the marketplace. The ENTIRE COMPANY thrives or fades to obscurity based on sales and acceptance of the OS. They will do whatever it takes, at all levels,
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by The OPTiCIAN (8190)
      > OS/2 died because no one high enough up the corporate command
      > structure lived or died by OS/2's success.

      Exactly.

      Further, for all the ridiculousness of the new vista interface, at least it's being done with the intention of impressing users. OS/2 never felt like it was being done with the users in mind. Maybe their bosses - but not the users themselves. There were annoying user interface issues with version 2 that still hadn't been fixed by version 4. New releases could come out supposedly with neat
  • People will continue to use Microsoft. Microsoft will phase out W2k and XP and you will forced to Vista. Maybe the Mac will mount a serious challenge but nothing is close to surplanting the hardware support that desktop Windows has and that a commercial mainstream OS needs.
    • by petrus4 (213815)
      Three things you're missing:-

      1) Microsoft had a period of a few years where they were essentially the only game in town. (Yes, I know about the Mac, but back then it didn't count, and to a large degree still doesn't) That period is now unquestionably over. More and more people are using Linux in business; there is also FreeBSD and (for those interested in it) OpenSolaris. People have choices, and that means people don't necessarily *have* to use Microsoft.

      2) The only place Microsoft still really has a s
  • On my laptop I'm currently dual booting XPsp2/VistaRC1. While I've not worked with the release version, I was quite impressed with RC1 & 2. Not had any driver issues except a slight PM issue(doesn't recover from standby or do screen brightness control). But, on the plus side, on a 1.7GHz Celeron w/ 512MB RAM I'm running(not walking as Beta 2 did) Aero, and have seen graphics card improvements (the ATI 200M is still a POS, but its slightly better under Vista. Try the POS out under Linux w/ OpenGL to
  • by Blakey Rat (99501)
    That's like asking, "has Microsoft become IBM?" The answer is no, not yet... but they're sure trying to.

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