After hearing all of the horror stories about Windows Vista from the press and various friends, I wanted to see what was what myself and decided to “upgrade” to Vista from XP. At first I was pleased with Vista’s interface and how pretty it was but that novelty wore off very quickly once I found out that many of my programs would not function any more because of incompatibilities with Vista.
For one, my printer stopped working, even after I uninstalled the XP drivers and downloaded the Vista driver for it. What the hell? A printer is a necessity especially because I’m a student. Good thing I’m dual booting Ubuntu on my computer and I let Ubuntu print my paper for me.
This is what I do not get. In Windows, you need all this bloated software and large drivers to get something as simple as a installing a printer. In Ubuntu, you don’t even need to look up the driver or install anything. You just plug it in and it works. And this is from a free operating system developed by hobbyists. Why can’t a multi-billion dollar corporation achieve this? It makes no sense.
Another big problem with Vista is that it underestimates the abilities of the user. The constant pop up’s for permission to install anything or change anything gets really irritating very quickly especially since it blanks out the whole screen until you click on it. I made my account with administrative privileges and yet you still ask me if I want to open an .exe? I understand that many users are computer illiterate and will end up installing some type of virus on their computer but most of the time, they’ll just be trying to install something totally harmless. A more elegant solution would be to have an repository of programs that are blacklisted as viruses and just warn people when they come across one of those, not while just trying to install something as innocent as Firefox.
While using Vista for a few days, I noticed that my battery life dropped dramatically by 50%. I looked at the loads the processors were under and was surprised (though at this point, I shouldn’t be) that both cores of my processor were maxed out at 100% while only having Firefox and iTunes up. Why is Vista sucking up so much power? It is ridiculous. I know that the fancy Aero Glass graphics suck up a lot of processing power but this is just ridiculous. Ubuntu has cool effects and is just as pretty yet is light on processor power. Microsoft really needs to reengineer Vista to be more efficient before it should even be considered ready for the laptop market.
I am now back to dual booting Ubuntu and Windows XP and I’ve learned a very important lesson: no matter what you do and no matter how pretty Vista is, NEVER upgrade from XP to Vista. People with Vista installed at the factory on their computer probably are satisfied to an extent but that’s because the hardware is tweaked by the manufacturer to run Vista. I’m going to stay away from Vista for now but I will give it another chance once the first service pack comes out.