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Thread: Diary of a Vista user - Part One

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    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    Diary of a Vista user - Part One

    What IS the difference between the work and home PC settings? It’s not like Vista gives you much of a clue... It says the same damn thing under each option. Still at least the install seems to have gone well.

    That Welcome screen is annoying though, so once I’ve grabbed the special extras available only to Ultimate users, I’ll kill it off.

    Ok, so Vista Update, which is still called Windows Update, says it has installed five Ultimate Extras. I’m buggered if I can find them though... so I’ve no idea what wonderful extras I’ve now got.
    Read more of my experiences in this (occasional) Vista Diary.
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
    "OH OOOOHH oOOHHHHHHHOOHHHHHHH FILL ME WITH YOUR.... eeww not the stuff from the lab"

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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    My advice - cut down on the caffeine for a start.. Secondly, stop being a whinging old lady

    To see what windows update installed:

    Hit Start. Press "Wi". Choose "Windows Update". Choose "View Update History"

    Ultimate Extras - see http://windowsultimate.com/Blogs/Extras/ - how did you get the extra two?

    I actually _love_ the built in searching in start menu - i no longer need a mouse and a big trawl to launch apps. If you searching for lots of files then search through explorer itself - the intent of having search in the start menu (I think) is more of a launch tool. To configure it - Control Panel->Indexing options (shocking I know).

    Network settings - "work" and "home" were the result of R&D with average users (see J. Allchin's missives) who just wanted a 'set and forget' scenario for setting up networking. It's not (like many things in Vista) aimed at power users (and I get where you're coming from as one myself - i'm a developer).

    UAC - tricky one. Saddened to see it turned off (security isn't possible without compromise) but it's your choice (hence it's configurable). As a dev i'm finding life interesting trying to work with UAC and non-admin user accounts - but it's something I really want to do (and it does require software buy-in). Are you also logged on permanently as an Admin (out of curiosity)?

    Annoying popups - actually they're much improved over XP which would _never_ shut up (low disk space warning anyone) - I currently don't have any worrying me (aside from the aforementioned shield icon but i'm really not that fussed about it).

    Driver installation - love it - it's far more 'seamless' in my eyes - try installing a composite USB device (USB sound card) on XP and see just how many stupid dialogs you have to click - on Vista it just gets on with it and has a small popup to tell you it's done. Nice. Very nice.

    3-4 months in on Vista now - I find XP darn clunky by comparison.. It's not perfect but it is _whole lot better_ IMHO.
    Last edited by dangel; 31-01-2007 at 06:35 PM.
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    System 003: AsRock MB, APU, 8 GIG Corsair, Silverstone HTPC case, stock cooler, GT220 1gbDDR3, WD Green 3TB, Kingston 40gb SSD, MCE Remote, Panasonic 50" LCD (87BDX) via HDMI Windows 8.1.1 (32) [media centre]
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    Does he need a reason? Funkstar's Avatar
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    So if the BBC ever lose their copies of Torchwood, I have 5 of each show on here... Thanks BBC for originally airing on BBC2, then again on BBC3 at 9pm and 1am... and again on BBC2 at 11pm... and finally on BBC3 at 11pm. But then I should be glad it’s not Scrubs.
    Sounds more like MCE needs a proper series detection routine. Bitch at them rather than the BBC. MythTV would record one of the repeats if the original air time conflicted with another recording. Thats how these things *should* work.

    n goes the disk and oh no! Hang on! I haven’t backed up my e-mail! Cancelcancelcancelcancel!
    then
    Ok, let’s get connected to my Outlook Exchange server.
    Why do you have to back up email if you connect to an exchange server, or is it different accounts? Put everything on a different partition. All i have to backup from windows is my Favourites and anything on the desktop. My Documents etc is all on my data partition. easy.

  4. #4
    No more Mr Nice Guy. Nick's Avatar
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    To answer the questions...

    Yeah, I found the Indexing options thing... the Vista help files are actually far and away better than anything MS have done before, really, really good...

    I understand why Vista offers the options for networking, but on first boot, when you can't actually access anymore info, it needs to be a bit more explicit in the differences.

    UAC is fine for multiple users, such as if my kids were on this machine it'd be on for sure!

    And yes, I'm running as Admin, not because I have an aversion to being a standard user but becuase I see no reason to run as a standard user... I'm quite happy in my admin account.

    Not too sure on driver installation though, though that's more likely to be a lack of Vista drivers for some of my hardware... Hence the Windows Mobile Device Center beta... that sucks. And why haven;t MS at least coded for the fact an iPod is an iPod and the VAST majority of users, like me, will install iTunes so stop trying to open the damn thing up every time I connect it!

    Series detection: Vista has it... Like I said, I blame myself and not the Beeb, it was a touch of sarcasm...

    Mail: Yep, got two POP3 acounts on the same Outlook client, that's what I was backing up, the rest can go get wiped, it's all on the exchange server!
    Quote Originally Posted by Dareos View Post
    "OH OOOOHH oOOHHHHHHHOOHHHHHHH FILL ME WITH YOUR.... eeww not the stuff from the lab"

  5. #5
    Theoretical Element Spud1's Avatar
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    Well the best way I can put this is...my experience was totally different to yours Nick.

    Installing...well it was a simple case of popping in the dvd and away it went As for the time zone thing - thats because you are assuming that just because someone sets the PC to be UK English that they are living in england..which is not always the case. Plenty of Ex-Pats out there who want windows to display time, date and currency correctly but who are in a different time zone (myself last year for example)

    The welcome screen...seen it in windows before, hated it then, disabled it then, disabled it now and jobs a good'n..just tick the 'do not show this box at startup' box and then its gone..no problems there then

    UAC I agree 100% thats its annoying, but I can see the point of it for some users, and once its gone its gone for good unless you re-enable it...

    ultimate extras? I saw 2 on my windows update, one of which is poker..which is now sitting in my games folder where I would expect it to be

    security center? again agreed but yet again its so simple to get rid of it that its not an issue.

    Active-sync? well thats (effectivly) 3rd party support that isnt offered there, even though its MS who makes both software products that doesnt automatically mean they are compatable..although I share your annoyance with microsoft not proving fully compatable drivers for their products with vista - their new laser 6000 desktop for example comes with a magnifier that doesnt run in aero

    Sound is again a 3rd party/Driver issue so cant blame vista for that

    Personally I *love* the integrated spotlig..I mean 'windows search' feature. Its a run box, its a search box, and a shortcut to advanced searches all in one! very rarely ever use the start menu anymore, I just type in the first word (or as much as is needed) for the app I want (say, cmd.exe) and press enter..and it loads Or if I get 1000's of results back I can just press enter and it will load the advanced search window where I can sort, restrict the search, search within the search, save the search as a folder etc etc etc.

    Been using vista for approx 2 months now as my main OS, and as dangel says, XP just feels 'clunky'. This is totally ignoring the pure beauty of the OS, so close to OSX but with the compatability of windows..

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    Sublime HEXUS.net
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    Whatever you do, don't install over xp.. it lasts about 3 weeks then starts to croak..

    The fresh vista install is going okay (the other one I reformatted to xp), but it still seems like it's not any real leap forward over xp, only now half the hardware doesn't have drivers (no opengl at the moment either), it's just xp polished up a bit and with even more bits hidden away..

    I think the vista box may get rebuilt into a gentoo or ubuntu box before too much longer..
    (\__/)
    (='.'=)
    (")_(")

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    Senior Member Tobeman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stoo View Post
    Whatever you do, don't install over xp.. it lasts about 3 weeks then starts to croak..
    That has been my general rule of thumb since, well, forever, for all Windows OS

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    i really am bemused at peoples' reactions to UAC - in my mind, it's the best bit of vista

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    Senior Member charleski's Avatar
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    From my experiences with the beta versions, UAC is a great idea that you should keep on even if you're an experienced user. The one thing I'd have liked to see is the option to get more information about what the program is actually trying to do.

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by charleski View Post
    From my experiences with the beta versions, UAC is a great idea that you should keep on even if you're an experienced user. The one thing I'd have liked to see is the option to get more information about what the program is actually trying to do.
    yeah, that'd be nice

    but really, UAC is obvious for anyone living post-MSDOS.

    the problem lies when people say "it's my pc, i know what i'm doing". UAC isn't there to stop people who know what they're doing from doing things. it's there to prevent those who don't know what they're doing from screwing up, and to prevent those who do know what they're doing from being screwed up.

    you download a supposedly "safe" app from the net - say a shareware program someone recommends. should it be able to make changes to your system like, say, delete c:\windows? hell no. that's something a) ordinary programs and b) ordinary users shouldn't be able to do. so UAC forces a program to behave in a 'safe' way, unless it explicitly gets permission not to. how about the toolbar test? it's a tribute to UAC that screwing up is so much harder to do, and resurrection is so much easier to do

    as a parent, would you want your kids' accounts to be able to delete critical files or install dodgy drivers? nope. as a sysadmin would you want then dumbass workers in an office doing it? nope.

    the key is in teaching yourself that you can often be a dumbass too - and UAC is there to help not hinder

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    Gordy Gordy's Avatar
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    I have to say I am totally with you on the frustrations of vista. Some of it you have to question how anybody came up with such idiocy! UAC is an utter disaster no one will keep it on so it is pointless.

    Some of the icons look erm terrible the network one in the tray for example, is that the best they could come up with?

    Explorer doesn't remember what size I want it to be.

    GIFs: What the blinking heck have ms done to gif support??? JPEG's work fine, but gifs don't auto load in photo gallery when you click on them and aren't shown on things like choosing your desktop???

    Software and drive support is poor at best.

    Things I like: Photo gallery, apple take note this is how the abomination that is iPhoto should be! Some of the UI is nice but some of it actually makes me feel seasick.
    I love the preview when you hover over things.


    Generally, I would not recommend anyone bother with vista for a good few months unless they enjoy a challenge.

  12. #12
    Civilian Nick F's Avatar
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    Great blog Nick, almost makes me want to stay with my Mac OS. I thought Vista would be the best thing to happen to PC's in a long while but it looks like I jumped the gun. Maybe I'll look forward to Leopard!

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    Seething Cauldron of Hatred TheAnimus's Avatar
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    "Would you like some toast?" thats the problem with Vista.

    On the other hand, using excel 2007, it looks sexy, and moves swiftly, the great thing is this new UI is actually more productive (for me anyway) i've become a hudge advocate of the ribbon control, and nocked out two apps this week with them (and its only wednesday!).

    Nick i'm assuming your on widescreen with your MCE. Don't you feal the changes are whilst minor feal slicker?

    Problem i have is video drivers on my media box for hdmi
    throw new ArgumentException (String, String, Exception)

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    Vive le pants! directhex's Avatar
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    i think the real problem, reading the little diary, is fear of change

    vista does a number of things differently, and you say you hate them

    instant searching of files, by name and content? ick

    secure and simple privilege separation system? ick

    new installer that doesn't demand floppy disks? ick

    system to ensure that computers aren't used without protection, to avoid becoming spam relay zombies? ick

    all we need now is a thumbs down on the 3d ui, drm features and changed explorer/control panel and i think we're done

    i'd be curious to see your opinions on products specifically targetted against vista, such as mac os x 10.5 or sled10

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    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    Fear of change - actually I'm going to agree with you there.

    People want to be 'admin' - why? Ok, so we're all used to having no security whatsoever as Windows users but would you always logon as 'root' on linux? Same thing with UAC - people aren't willing to compromise. Security = restrictions. Think about it. UAC has improved massively since the early builds but if users/devs just expect it to be disabled it's a dead duck. That's a real shame.

    It's comments like this " it's just xp polished up a bit and with even more bits hidden away.." that are really disappointing. There's so much new in there, so much rewritten (ground up). It's a really solid OS (in my experience) and an amazing job given the internal mess at MS thesedays. I urge people to try it for themselves and please (PLEASE) forget the public beta.
    Last edited by dangel; 01-02-2007 at 09:22 AM.
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  16. #16
    Lovely chap dangel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    To answer the questions...

    Yeah, I found the Indexing options thing... the Vista help files are actually far and away better than anything MS have done before, really, really good...
    The help was very good in XP (but IKWYM) but most people never used it (they don't use our online help either).

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    I understand why Vista offers the options for networking, but on first boot, when you can't actually access anymore info, it needs to be a bit more explicit in the differences.
    Why? Why not just keep it simple and let a power user sort it out later on. I had no problems with the settings - i'm using my PC at work so guess what I selected..

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    UAC is fine for multiple users, such as if my kids were on this machine it'd be on for sure!
    UAC is fine for everybody - the only reason i disabled it was pre-SP1 for VS2005 i couldn't develop properly. Making the switch from "everything can do anything it likes all the time" to "I will choose what happens on my PC not you" is _very_ difficult for Windows users..


    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    And yes, I'm running as Admin, not because I have an aversion to being a standard user but becuase I see no reason to run as a standard user... I'm quite happy in my admin account.
    Again, welcome to the legacy of poor design by MS through the years. Simply put, running every app on your system in elevated context isn't safe - no matter how much of an 'expert' you think you are.

    Quote Originally Posted by Nick View Post
    Not too sure on driver installation though, though that's more likely to be a lack of Vista drivers for some of my hardware... Hence the Windows Mobile Device Center beta... that sucks. And why haven;t MS at least coded for the fact an iPod is an iPod and the VAST majority of users, like me, will install iTunes so stop trying to open the damn thing up every time I connect it!
    Key word 'beta' I think - it's just not finished yet. Lack of drivers isn't MS' fault.
    System 001: Maximus VII Formula, 4790k i7, RTX 2080ti FE (incoming), 16GIG Corsair Vengence DDR3 RAM CL9, Corsair HX1000, ROG SWIFT PG278Q , SSDs, Antec 1200 case, All watercooled. [main]
    System 002: A8 3850 APU, ASUS uATX FM1A75 MB, 4GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3, Corsair psu, OCZ Agility 3, 1TB F3, Dell 2001FP 20" LCD, £7's worth of 5.1 speakers (they rock) Windows 7 x64[wife/server]
    System 003: AsRock MB, APU, 8 GIG Corsair, Silverstone HTPC case, stock cooler, GT220 1gbDDR3, WD Green 3TB, Kingston 40gb SSD, MCE Remote, Panasonic 50" LCD (87BDX) via HDMI Windows 8.1.1 (32) [media centre]
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    System 006: Dell Optiplex 9010, i7, 8gb, 128gb Samsung 830 x 2 (boot and VM drive), 1TB WD HDD, ATI something, Windows 8.1.1 x64 RTM [work]


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