Paul reviews latest Windows Vista build

So, the Windows Vista December 2005 CTP (Build 5270) is here. This is a big one! Paul Thurrott said it was so big that it took four parts to properly cover it. I’ll have a Tablet PC running the latest Windows Vista and some other stuff on it at the geek dinner next week if you wanna take a look (unfortunately my Tablet PC doesn’t have a good enough video card to run the latest glass theme, but everything else is there).

Paul’s conclusion? “Honestly, it’s been a long time since I’ve felt this good about Windows Vista. I can see sweeping improvements across the board and, perhaps more important, a level of fit and finish that had never been present in pre-release versions of this product before.”

I agree. I’m using it more and more and it’s harder and harder to use my XP machines. 2006 is looking like it’s going to be a fun year to be a MSFTie.

Well, I’m outta here for the weekend. Have a happy holidays. Next week we’re in Santa Clara, CA. Looking forward to having a blogger/geek dinner in Palo Alto on December 30 at 6 p.m. in the Cheesecake Factory on University Ave.

78 thoughts on “Paul reviews latest Windows Vista build

  1. I’ve just installed 5270 on my Toshiba M200 but can only get ‘standard’ VGA drivers working (16bit at the M200′s full screen resolution)

    Has anyone managed to get decent drivers working and if so can they please share the info (Robert?)

    Thanks very much

  2. I’ve just installed 5270 on my Toshiba M200 but can only get ‘standard’ VGA drivers working (16bit at the M200′s full screen resolution)

    Has anyone managed to get decent drivers working and if so can they please share the info (Robert?)

    Thanks very much

  3. Whoops, that should be the GeForce Fx Go5200 LDDM drivers that are included in 5270 do not work for Glass and blue screen the machine whereas they worked in previous builds

  4. Whoops, that should be the GeForce Fx Go5200 LDDM drivers that are included in 5270 do not work for Glass and blue screen the machine whereas they worked in previous builds

  5. And Brandon, just because ” latest CTP includes drivers for just about everything” doesn’t mean they work. The 5270 LDDM driver does NOT work for hardly anyone. Have you been in the private beta hardware video group. Almost everyone with an NVidia card is reporting that the LDDM drivers that USED TO WORK in the last builds don’t in this. I just tried the Registry hack again and it just hangs the machine. I am sick and tired of having devoted tens of hours the last 2 weeks to try to make something work that just doesn’t.

  6. And Brandon, just because ” latest CTP includes drivers for just about everything” doesn’t mean they work. The 5270 LDDM driver does NOT work for hardly anyone. Have you been in the private beta hardware video group. Almost everyone with an NVidia card is reporting that the LDDM drivers that USED TO WORK in the last builds don’t in this. I just tried the Registry hack again and it just hangs the machine. I am sick and tired of having devoted tens of hours the last 2 weeks to try to make something work that just doesn’t.

  7. Brandon,

    Get a clue. Do you even know who I am? I have been beta testing Microsoft stuff for 22 years which is probably older than you are judging from your picture and post. I have worked for MSFT and NuMega. I understand the kernel. The 5270 LDDM drivers (THE NEW ONES IN THIS BUILD) are BROKEN and BLUE SCREEN the machine. Do you know what that is? They flat out DON’T WORK for me and everyone else on the private beta forum and THEY DID WORK LAST BUILD. You see, thats called a REGRESSION in the world of software.

    And the registry hack hangs the machine with a blue screen. This build is horrible for drivers compared with the last few. And yes, I installed it on a ThinkPad but Mobility Radeon 7500′s don’t do Direct/X 9 and so don’t do Glass.

    There are a lot of problems here.

  8. Brandon,

    Get a clue. Do you even know who I am? I have been beta testing Microsoft stuff for 22 years which is probably older than you are judging from your picture and post. I have worked for MSFT and NuMega. I understand the kernel. The 5270 LDDM drivers (THE NEW ONES IN THIS BUILD) are BROKEN and BLUE SCREEN the machine. Do you know what that is? They flat out DON’T WORK for me and everyone else on the private beta forum and THEY DID WORK LAST BUILD. You see, thats called a REGRESSION in the world of software.

    And the registry hack hangs the machine with a blue screen. This build is horrible for drivers compared with the last few. And yes, I installed it on a ThinkPad but Mobility Radeon 7500′s don’t do Direct/X 9 and so don’t do Glass.

    There are a lot of problems here.

  9. Rob,

    I have a urgent request for the Vista team. Please, please, please include a checkbox near the start of the setup process that will allow users to opt-out of being protected from themselves. Yes, I understand that user ignorance has been at the core of the black eye Microsoft has gotten over security. Yet, not all users are idiots. If you were only allowed to eat when my computers caught a virus or malware, you’d be dust by now! :) It has only happened twice, and I’m 49.

    What I’m really saying, of course, is that Vista–and its setup–must allow for differing levels of user competency. I love XP, but I can’t begin to tell you how many times it has hobbled me as I tried to complete a legitimate task. For my own usage, I need less security interference, not more.

  10. Rob,

    I have a urgent request for the Vista team. Please, please, please include a checkbox near the start of the setup process that will allow users to opt-out of being protected from themselves. Yes, I understand that user ignorance has been at the core of the black eye Microsoft has gotten over security. Yet, not all users are idiots. If you were only allowed to eat when my computers caught a virus or malware, you’d be dust by now! :) It has only happened twice, and I’m 49.

    What I’m really saying, of course, is that Vista–and its setup–must allow for differing levels of user competency. I love XP, but I can’t begin to tell you how many times it has hobbled me as I tried to complete a legitimate task. For my own usage, I need less security interference, not more.

  11. I went from 5211 to 5270 , 5211 took me a few days to get drivers to work for it. The drivers that did work were a Nvidia 614 Beta driver from a third party site for ASUS A7n8x Nforce drivers, and I used 81.87 (and ran it in compatibility mode for Xp) for a 5200 geforce fx graphics card , 5270 was alot harder , The 81.87 still works for my the graphics card in compatiblilty mode for Xp, but the beta drivers I was using will not work for 5270. I tried used the reg Xp/2000 nforce 5.10 drivers and had better sucess, (also ran these in compatibility mode)or maybe it was a combination of the two , both kept erroring out because of the UAP I suspect and windows defender. The only thing I still can’t get to work is my MCP Networking for my 10/100 ethernet, but my gigabit 10/1000 Lan is fine. Which that is not good because I cant get on my network. But a least I can get online and wine about how much the latest beta sucks compared to the last one I had. :P

  12. I went from 5211 to 5270 , 5211 took me a few days to get drivers to work for it. The drivers that did work were a Nvidia 614 Beta driver from a third party site for ASUS A7n8x Nforce drivers, and I used 81.87 (and ran it in compatibility mode for Xp) for a 5200 geforce fx graphics card , 5270 was alot harder , The 81.87 still works for my the graphics card in compatiblilty mode for Xp, but the beta drivers I was using will not work for 5270. I tried used the reg Xp/2000 nforce 5.10 drivers and had better sucess, (also ran these in compatibility mode)or maybe it was a combination of the two , both kept erroring out because of the UAP I suspect and windows defender. The only thing I still can’t get to work is my MCP Networking for my 10/100 ethernet, but my gigabit 10/1000 Lan is fine. Which that is not good because I cant get on my network. But a least I can get online and wine about how much the latest beta sucks compared to the last one I had. :P

  13. Networking: Gigabyte battlefields
    Researchers are developing sophisticated networking technologies that enable military commanders to share tactical information — right from the battlefield, in real-time, experts tell United Press International.
    As if out of a scene of the TV counter-terrorist drama “24,” the networking software enables commanders to share — or fuse — information from an array of air and ground sensors. This will make the tracking of enemy ground troops, friendly troops and artillery and aircraft easier, experts said. By Gene Koprowski

  14. Networking: Gigabyte battlefields
    Researchers are developing sophisticated networking technologies that enable military commanders to share tactical information — right from the battlefield, in real-time, experts tell United Press International.
    As if out of a scene of the TV counter-terrorist drama “24,” the networking software enables commanders to share — or fuse — information from an array of air and ground sensors. This will make the tracking of enemy ground troops, friendly troops and artillery and aircraft easier, experts said. By Gene Koprowski

  15. “MCE STILL requires a analog tuner”

    Er, I have MCE set up, and I have two digital tuners (PCI cards) and no analog tuners. I’ve never had to put an analog tuner in to get MCE to recognise the digital tuners.

  16. “MCE STILL requires a analog tuner”

    Er, I have MCE set up, and I have two digital tuners (PCI cards) and no analog tuners. I’ve never had to put an analog tuner in to get MCE to recognise the digital tuners.

  17. Oh – and what is your problem with the Registry?

    You’re not supposed to look at it. You’re not supposed to even know it’s there.

    The registry is for the *registration* of COM Servers and mapping of GUIDs. If not for the registry, most every app since Windows 95 simply wouldn’t be able to function. Most of Windows itself wouldn’t. That information needs to be stored somewhere, and the Registry is extremely good at it.

    Should applications use it to store settings? That’s another matter entirely. Maybe you think they shouldn’t. But one reason developers do use the registry sometimes is that it’s extremely good at caching. If you’re reading or updating a stored value frequently the registry is far more efficient than accessing the filesystem.

    Let’s see,

    It’s fragile

    it’s easily abused even by Windows itself

    it’s a single point of failure for critical system settings

    It is to date, utterly and completely unrepairable, to the point that Microsoft’s answer to this has been to just make nigh-constant backup copies of the Registry, so when it does get corrupt, hopefully, you have a good copy of it.

    It kills flexibility, (just try moving your Office folder to another partition and using it.)

    It has no, zero, zip good maintenance tools whatsoever, so even IT pros can’t easily fix registry problems.

    Brandon, you say that you should never have to go in there, yet, Microsoft’s support site is CONSTANTLY telling you to tweak Registry values to make things work correctly.

    It is possibly the single worst, no STUPIDEST implementation of a generally good idea ever, and it should have been replaced by XML files or an XML database that CAN be maintained and repaired if need be, and the host of problems with it ensure that Vista will be just as much of a maintenance pain in the ass as XP or any other version. (Wanna know why reload windows/reformat reinstall are 90% of windows maintenance? The Registry) This of course is unheard of on any other enterprise platform.

    Once again, Microsoft is trapped by DECADES of bad decisions, and they refuse to change a bad implementation into something useable.

  18. Oh – and what is your problem with the Registry?

    You’re not supposed to look at it. You’re not supposed to even know it’s there.

    The registry is for the *registration* of COM Servers and mapping of GUIDs. If not for the registry, most every app since Windows 95 simply wouldn’t be able to function. Most of Windows itself wouldn’t. That information needs to be stored somewhere, and the Registry is extremely good at it.

    Should applications use it to store settings? That’s another matter entirely. Maybe you think they shouldn’t. But one reason developers do use the registry sometimes is that it’s extremely good at caching. If you’re reading or updating a stored value frequently the registry is far more efficient than accessing the filesystem.

    Let’s see,

    It’s fragile

    it’s easily abused even by Windows itself

    it’s a single point of failure for critical system settings

    It is to date, utterly and completely unrepairable, to the point that Microsoft’s answer to this has been to just make nigh-constant backup copies of the Registry, so when it does get corrupt, hopefully, you have a good copy of it.

    It kills flexibility, (just try moving your Office folder to another partition and using it.)

    It has no, zero, zip good maintenance tools whatsoever, so even IT pros can’t easily fix registry problems.

    Brandon, you say that you should never have to go in there, yet, Microsoft’s support site is CONSTANTLY telling you to tweak Registry values to make things work correctly.

    It is possibly the single worst, no STUPIDEST implementation of a generally good idea ever, and it should have been replaced by XML files or an XML database that CAN be maintained and repaired if need be, and the host of problems with it ensure that Vista will be just as much of a maintenance pain in the ass as XP or any other version. (Wanna know why reload windows/reformat reinstall are 90% of windows maintenance? The Registry) This of course is unheard of on any other enterprise platform.

    Once again, Microsoft is trapped by DECADES of bad decisions, and they refuse to change a bad implementation into something useable.

  19. Guzzard: did you watch the video on http://channel9.msdn.com with the Windows Vista kernel team? I asked them about the registry. Their answer might surprise you.

    No Robert, although i thought about it. But, since WiMP can’t scrub ahead or back worth a crap, i can’t bypass stuff I’m not interested in to get to the parts I AM interested in. So, I gave up on Channel 9 videos, because I don’t like using a video player that is like using Quicktime 3, and I don’t feel like paying for the WM plugin for Quicktime Player.

  20. Guzzard: did you watch the video on http://channel9.msdn.com with the Windows Vista kernel team? I asked them about the registry. Their answer might surprise you.

    No Robert, although i thought about it. But, since WiMP can’t scrub ahead or back worth a crap, i can’t bypass stuff I’m not interested in to get to the parts I AM interested in. So, I gave up on Channel 9 videos, because I don’t like using a video player that is like using Quicktime 3, and I don’t feel like paying for the WM plugin for Quicktime Player.

  21. Robert,

    Trotting out the Media Center and the Tablet might be an effective rejoinder, if either of them were actually any good. Better luck next time. (Hint: don’t point to MS “bob” either.)

  22. Robert,

    Trotting out the Media Center and the Tablet might be an effective rejoinder, if either of them were actually any good. Better luck next time. (Hint: don’t point to MS “bob” either.)

  23. Larry,

    When you say “with all this money, you’d think they could do better”, I think you fail to realize that a project can be just as thoroughly botched if it’s OVER-funded.

    MS has thousands of people working on Longwind, and they’re demoralized, poorly led, and have almost no pride left in their work (if indeed they ever had any in the first place).

    Contrast to Apple, where the largest product development group I’ve heard of has only 12 people, and a typical project has more like 3 to 5. (Xcode has more, but they’re segmented into groups like the the GUI people, the build engine people, the compiler people, etc.)

    MS’s problems are systemic, and they will not get fixed until and unless the company has a near-death experience. I’m talking the kind of financial collapse that gets the top four levels of their org chart handed their walking papers.

    If *that* happens, I’d take a serious look at buying some MSFT shares, but as long as that screaming maniac is in charge of the company, I’m 100% Bearish on MSFT.

  24. Larry,

    When you say “with all this money, you’d think they could do better”, I think you fail to realize that a project can be just as thoroughly botched if it’s OVER-funded.

    MS has thousands of people working on Longwind, and they’re demoralized, poorly led, and have almost no pride left in their work (if indeed they ever had any in the first place).

    Contrast to Apple, where the largest product development group I’ve heard of has only 12 people, and a typical project has more like 3 to 5. (Xcode has more, but they’re segmented into groups like the the GUI people, the build engine people, the compiler people, etc.)

    MS’s problems are systemic, and they will not get fixed until and unless the company has a near-death experience. I’m talking the kind of financial collapse that gets the top four levels of their org chart handed their walking papers.

    If *that* happens, I’d take a serious look at buying some MSFT shares, but as long as that screaming maniac is in charge of the company, I’m 100% Bearish on MSFT.

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