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Windows 7 Benchmarks Show Little Improvement On Vista

kdawson posted more than 5 years ago | from the second-verse-same-as-the-first dept.

Microsoft 369

snydeq writes "InfoWorld's Randall Kennedy examines Windows 7 from the kernel up, subjecting the 'pre-beta' to a battery of benchmarks to find any signs that the OS will be faster, more responsive, and less resource-intensive than the bloated Vista, as Microsoft suggests. Identical thread counts at the kernel level suggest to Kennedy that Windows 7 is a 'minor point-type of release, as opposed to a major update or rewrite.' Memory footprint for the kernel proved eerily similar to that of Vista as well. 'In fact, as I worked my way through the process lists of the two operating systems, I was struck by the extent of the similarities,' Kennedy writes, before discussing the results of a nine-way workload test scenario he performed on Windows 7 — the same scenario that showed Vista was 40 percent slower than Windows XP. 'In a nutshell, Windows 7 M3 is a virtual twin of Vista when it comes to performance,' Kennedy concludes. 'In other words, Microsoft's follow-up to its most unpopular OS release since Windows Me threatens to deliver zero measurable performance benefits while introducing new and potentially crippling compatibility issues.'"

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so? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718101)

it still kicks linux's ass

Re:so? (1)

Xaemyl (88001) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718117)

In what ways? Elucidate!

Re:so? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718191)

games, device support, office software, general acceptance in the business world. do i need to continue?

Re:so? (3, Insightful)

PinkyDead (862370) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718221)

"general" - is that another word for zero? - because I have yet to see a business running Vista, and I certainly don't think they are running Windows 7 - or probably ever will be.

Re:so? (1)

andy19 (1250844) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718773)

My current employer is going to be 'upgrading' all the computers in the organization to Vista sometime in early 2009.
Not surprising to me, given the knowledge and competency of the IT group.

Re:so? (3, Interesting)

name*censored* (884880) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718241)

games, device support, office software, general acceptance in the business world. do i need to continue?

Better device support, you say? [slashdot.org] And given the other three are not an attribute of Windows' quality, but instead it's popularity (especially given that OpenOffice is at least as good as MS Word), I'd say you DO need to continue.

Re:so? (4, Insightful)

0xygen (595606) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718435)

He said "better" not "more".
Quality not quantity, sadly.

I love Linux, it's good for work, good for application and data servers, but for me, there is a problem.

I am a gamer and I like trying out new hardware. Both of these always pose problems under Linux.

Good stable drivers take time, and require the support of hardware vendors.

Sadly, this means I still have to own and use a copy of Windows XP or give up on games and toys. Ain't gonna happen!

Re:so? (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718861)

I couldn't agree more.

Linux is a great O/S and makes wonderful servers but as a desktop it just doesn't have the software. I earn my living using Photoshop, Cubase, Sound Forge and CD Architect.

I really couldn't care less what O/S my desktop runs just as long as I can get my work done. Sadly the Linux equivalents don't yet cut the mustard so I too am stuck with XP.

Linux is a great operating system which is only missing professional desktop applications.

Re:so? (5, Interesting)

CrispBH (822439) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718807)

(especially given that OpenOffice is at least as good as MS Word)

Afraid I've got to interject here. I'm in the early stages of writing a dissertation, and OOo3 Writer just does not have the same feature set as even Word 2003 (which I'm using for it, under wine) for serious document composure.

I use Linux and have done for years, as my only OS, and I've used and support OOo and have done for years. I can't comment on the other portions of either office suite, because I've never put them to serious work. But, having spent a few hours really teaching myself Word 2003, then trying to see where the same functionality was in Writer, it became apparent that some of it just wasn't there.

It's a shame, but until OOo Writer gets (for example) something akin to Outline mode, it's just not able to match Word for advanced features. That said, OOo is very solid software, and will get there with regards to said features sooner or later I'm sure. Some may even say I'm using the wrong tool for the job.

Re:so? (4, Informative)

sveard (1076275) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718727)

I've used XP (feels like I've used it forever), Vista (even longer), and Ubuntu (since 6.04).

In Ubuntu I rarely had any hardware problems. Ubuntu 8.10 recognizes all hardware without ANY problem. In Windows (same hardware!), I have to install at least 5 different hardware drivers. Mind you that this was not on cheap or obscure hardware.

The way I see the hardware issue is: a fresh Windows installation needs half a dozen drivers to be installed manually by the user. Finding drivers is usually pretty easy, especially for newer hardware. In Linux, you have two scenarios:
1. It Just Works (TM).
2. You have driver issues: in this case, you're better of having problems with older hardware that is more likely to be supported by some third party driver.
Office software: OpenOffice.org? It fits my needs (but I do not use it in a professional context so YMMV)
Games: agreed, this is Windows turf.
General acceptance: someday... (one can hope)

Re:so? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718541)

Don't feed the trolls.

Sheer genius (5, Funny)

hcdejong (561314) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718123)

not only is it a dupe, but the original article is still on the front page. Way to go.

Re:Sheer genius (0, Redundant)

retech (1228598) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718157)

It was done in an effort to illustrate the issue.

-Approved by the Office of Redundancy Redundant Department

Re:Sheer genius (0, Redundant)

Loibisch (964797) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718539)

-Approved by the Office of Redundancy Redundant Department

That one usually goes "...the department of redundancy department."

Re:Sheer genius (4, Funny)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718185)

You know, at first, I thought the "dupe" tag referred to Windows 7...

Re:Sheer genius (2, Funny)

Andr T. (1006215) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718193)

No, that would be 'dope'

marketing exercise (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718715)

The change? sed -e 's/Vista/7/g'

Hey, 7 is shorter than Vista. It must be lighter, right?
 

Re:Sheer genius (2, Funny)

wisty (1335733) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718929)

Which will be released as "Windows Mojave"?

Re:Sheer genius (3, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718283)

Ah, but the other article was about how Windows performed the same computationally while having a faster interface. That failed to needlessly bash Microsoft by extrapolating miles from the evidence, and therefore was insufficient.

Re:Sheer genius (1)

aliquis (678370) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718335)

Thanks, I was wondering if it was the same or not since the headline looked the same but I didn't read the other article either so I couldn't tell. The description of the article seems more evil in this one :D

Tagging don't work in Safari so I can't tag the article accordingly :/
(Without switching to a browser which doesn't suck that is ..)

Re:Sheer genius (2, Interesting)

blowdart (31458) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718359)

Yes but we're ignoring the fact that the slashdot released currently running is a debug, limited release, unfinished product. Maybe when it's done the results will be different, just like the Windows 7, not even beta, version the lazy journalists tested.

Re:Sheer genius (4, Funny)

Rogerborg (306625) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718747)

Proof yet again that in addition to kdawson not "editing" Slashdot, he/she/it doesn't even read it.

Honestly, how would you replace him/her/it with a shell script that performed that badly? You'd have to write it in FORTRAN, blindfolded, while tripping on mescaline.

Re:Sheer genius (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718815)

It's an intentional dupe. Look:

from the second-verse-same-as-the-first dept.

Typical FUD against Microsoft (2, Insightful)

Defcon79 (1306681) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718145)

I guess it was only a matter of time before the press got tired of hyping up Windows 7 and had to report some negative news to keep getting the page views.

"zero measurable performance benefits"

Yes, because things like improved startup time, increased battery life etc are not measurable right?

"Windows 7 is a 'minor point-type of release, as opposed to a major update or rewrite"

And when did Microsoft claim otherwise? The whole point of Windows 7 has been that its built on the Vista SP1 (Server 2008) codebase and they are NOT trying to change too much. Which brings us neatly to...

"introducing new and potentially crippling compatibility issues"

Read above. They didn't change any of the basics so that there would be no incompatibilities (like those caused by a new driver model).

Of course, these articles purposely ignore all the UI and usability improvements the very same mags covered earlier, which make a very visible difference in daily use.

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (0)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718355)

Another MSCP? A better(?) UI is not a good deal if you need the double of resources to do the same things. Simple that

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (1)

pdusen (1146399) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718501)

Check your math there, Einstein. 2x != x.

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718653)

Friend of MSCP? As example, many games needs "x" for windows XP and 1,5x~2x for Windows Vista. I see you can't understood figurative language

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (-1, Offtopic)

James McGuigan (852772) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718863)

(2x == x) for x in (-inf, -1, 0, 1, inf)

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (1)

James McGuigan (852772) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718873)

oops!
(2x == x) for x in (-inf, 0, inf)
(x^2 == x) for x in (-inf, -1, 0, 1, inf)

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (1)

machine321 (458769) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718579)

And when did Microsoft claim otherwise? The whole point of Windows 7 has been that its built on the Vista SP1 (Server 2008) codebase and they are NOT trying to change too much.

Especially when you consider that the server product will be named "Server 2008 R2". Added features, few major changes.

Re:Typical FUD against Microsoft (1)

RCL (891376) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718591)

And why do those UI improvements should matter in benchmarks?

Perfect (4, Funny)

DesScorp (410532) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718167)

Windows 7 is just a rehash of a just released OS, and this article is a rehash of a just released article. There's so much synchronicity, Sting is singing in the background.

Re:Perfect (4, Funny)

savuporo (658486) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718217)

"32-bit extensions and a graphical shell for a 16-bit patch to an 8-bit operating system originally coded for a 4-bit microprocessor, written by a 2-bit company that can't stand 1-bit of competition" Still stands strong. Now with a 64-bit patch on top.

FUD, but well-deserved (-1, Troll)

BhaKi (1316335) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718197)

introducing new and potentially crippling compatibility issues

not to mention new flavors of DRM and many new proprietary protocols and formats.

Re:FUD, but well-deserved (1)

pdusen (1146399) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718535)

"New"? Care to elaborate on that? I'm not aware of any that weren't in Vista.

Windows is, well, Windows? (5, Insightful)

Manip (656104) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718199)

What exactly is this article trying to prove?

Microsoft themselves have said that Windows 7 will ship will the same underlying infrastructure as Windows Vista. They also said that Windows Vista was the biggest kernel rewrite since Windows 2000.

The interesting thing about a lot of Vista's bloat is that it isn't kernel level. We know this since we can compare Windows 2003 and Vista. Windows 2003 has almost identical program startup times to Windows XP/2000.

I do think that Windows 7 is going in a disappointing direction in general. They seem to be playing right into what I like to call the "Apple Trap." Instead of doing what Microsoft do best which is to produce a workhorse they instead try and play the designer, and want to make a work of art.
 

Not windows 7 but.. (5, Funny)

POTSandPANS (781918) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718375)

Maybe they've decided to finally release that Windows Mojave I've heard so many good things about!

Re:Not windows 7 but.. (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718643)

I was cleaning out a shelf over the weekend and came across the big ziplock bag of manuals/documentation that came with my HP desktop from several years ago (it came with XP MCE 2005). The sticker on the bag says "Mojave MCE". Still not quite sure what to make of that.

Re:Not windows 7 but.. (2, Insightful)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718789)

Mojave? They have yet to release Cairo! [wikipedia.org]

Re:Windows is, well, Windows? (1)

eniacfoa (1203466) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718925)

yes but microsoft have also stated the goals and one of those goals is - "the same software should run faster under windows 7 than vista"

What? (5, Insightful)

avxo (861854) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718229)

I have no problems with benchmarking the O/S and commenting on performance and the like, but when the person that analyzes and presents these results says: "the process lists are similar" I'm forced to wonder what the guy is smoking. OK, so you have have smss.exe, csrss.exe, winlogon.exe, a bunch of svchost.exe processes. That really says nothing about the underlying architecture of the operating system and the amount of differences that are there. This guy might as well have said "I looked at Word '97 and Word 2007 and they're both named 'winword.exe' and let you edit text. I'm struck by those similarities!" Anyone expecting Windows 7 to be a radical departure from Windows Vista is delusional, all the more so if that expectation involved vastly different process lists. Also, this guy compares the video encoding performance of Vista and Windows 7 and says there's no performance improvements... That has got to the dumbest thing I have ever heard. Seriously. It might very well be that Windows 7 is as slow as Vista. Maybe it's even slower. But you will never know that by comparing how long video encoding takes on each of them. Video encoding is a CPU-bound process, so nothing Windows 7 does can improve the video encoding performance of any machine because it cannot just magically improve your CPUs clock speed. All other things being equal, any gains from encoding german scheisse porn on Windows 7 over doing so on Windows Vista are going to be negligible at best.

Re:What? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718483)

...any gains from encoding german scheisse porn on Windows 7 over doing so on Windows Vista are going to be negligible at best.

What about normal videos?

Re:What? (5, Informative)

mobby_6kl (668092) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718499)

I have to agree with you here, mostly. Most of the tests make very little sense, and expecting W7 to be a rewrite is just stupid. Watching some of the W7-related PDC 2008 videos, I never got the impression that improving performance was their major priority, except perhaps for some tweaks for netbooks. Instead, most of the focus appears to be on other areas such as improved usability and power consumption. Not to mention that the M3 is a pre-beta build.

However, the OS can certainly have a significant impact on something like video encoding: differences in the scheduler or system calls/APIs can do that. Here's a somewhat outdated Vista vs XP [tomshardware.com] benchmark. The xvid and h.264 encoders are around 20% slower in Vista, and the impact is similar in some other cases, such as with WinRAR or UT2004. Differences of just a few percent can usually be ignored, but I find these significant. If somewhere between the release of Vista and W7 the maximum differences are lowered to around 5% compared to XP, whether with a service pack, new drivers or optimizations, I'd consider that good enough and possibly switch. After all, going from Win98 to XP also caused a drop in framerates, but was well worth it.

Re:What? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718701)

You are correct that video encoding is a cpu-bound process.

It would make absolute sense to have cpu-intensive, io-intensive and mixed-cycle processes used for benchmarks, not because the actual time it takes for the cpu to encode the video (or for the drive to read a sector) would be different, but the overhead imposed by the rest of the o/s and necessary processes.

It's this overhead that makes an o/s fast or slow, so the easiest way to measure it in a way that makes sense to the end-user, is to measure total wall-clock time for a cpu-intensive, an io-intensive and a mixed task.

Of course the cpu time required for the actual encoding will be the same (assuming the encoding libraries and the standard shared libraries e.g. msvc are the same, and assuming context switches have the same latency). But wall-clock time also includes the timeslices given to the o/s (kernel and processes) as well as the latency of the scheduler itself.

At least it is not slower (5, Insightful)

itamihn (1213328) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718237)

*cofff* Ubuntu 8.10 *cofff*

Re:At least it is not slower (0, Troll)

Computershack (1143409) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718341)

*cofff* Ubuntu 8.10 *cofff*

Indeed. It's as bloated and slow as hell compared to 7.10. The analogy is quite good.

Re:At least it is not slower (1)

A12m0v (1315511) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718577)

At least Ubuntu is but one of many GNU/Linux distros. There a lot of lightweight distros out there, and you can even lighten Ubuntu, to some extent, with the WMs like LXDE. Or start (Linux) from scratch.

Re:At least it is not slower (1)

nitio (825314) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718771)

That is, unfortunately, the common answer when someone mentions anything of distro bubbles: "There are alternatives!". You know, this has got to stop at some point. Noone asked if there's another distro, the OP only mentioned that Ubuntu 8.10 is slower than previous versions. And he's right to complain if he was used to have a good performance on it. Hell, even I had better experiences with Windows XP than Ubuntu 8.04 in apparent performance.

Don't get me wrong though, I've used Linux from 1999 until July this year when I finally gave up and bought myself a Macbook after a simple udev security update fucked up my whole system. I still think it's a powerful platform but still has ways to go - both internally and the mentality of the users/admins/devs.

Skipping this as well? (4, Insightful)

RenHoek (101570) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718245)

So we're skipping this one as well?

Re:Skipping this as well? (2, Funny)

stmok (1331127) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718575)

No. This time, we're jumping ship.

Re:Skipping this as well? (0, Offtopic)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718777)

I already did, to the most pleasant *nix system I've used yet, long time "ready for the desktop". OS X. :) I'll be damned if I have never before used an distribution providing such a merge of geeky features and usability and in general lack of fuss.

If I were 10 years younger now, I'd probably write annoyed posts on how Windows 7 is copying OS X features like the Dock, but nowadays I can't even be bothered.

I left that mess that's called Windows as for my home computing needs to get my work done more efficiently, and that's that. I've used Windows since 3.1, but Vista, and the lack of vision MS is still showing after that OS, was enough. That Apple is focusing on speed and not features on Snow Leopard is speaking volumes about the difference in mentality compared to the offices in Redmond.

Isn't this kind of the point? (4, Insightful)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718255)

One of the biggest PR failures of Vista was serious compatability issues with old software and hardware. (I'm going to blame the soft/hardware makers for this. Everyone had 5 years to collect an arsenal of XP gear so I don't think they cried themselves to sleep that we had to buy new Vista Compatible printers just because they couldn't be bothered fixing the drivers.) MS have decided to base Win7 almost entirely around the existing Vista kernel to avoid this, hence the identical performance. "[I]ntroducing new and potentially crippling compatibility issues" would be more likely if MS had decided to chase performance improvements in Win7, unless they based Win7 around the old XP kernel (which ain't happening in their new one-kernel-to-rule-them-all approach).

Re:Isn't this kind of the point? (3, Informative)

makomk (752139) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718895)

The trouble is, if you read TFA, there are still compatibility issues with drivers and software designed for Vista. They'll probably be fixed, but it isn't a good sign.

Not a major re-write? (2, Interesting)

bazorg (911295) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718287)

I thought that Vista was a major re-write because of the new secutiry model. If that is the case, would it be reasonable to do another "major re-write" just a couple of years later? People might want to look into TinyXP project to see how much improvement can be made to a standard installation before demanding major re-writes.

Re:Not a major re-write? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718393)

And the TinyVista project to see how little can be done with a standard installation.

!News (1)

TheDarkMaster (1292526) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718319)

Nothing new. Damn, I expected a better performance on Windows 7, but I see i will need to change to Linux when XP support gone out.

Re:!News (1)

arotenbe (1203922) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718333)

I see i will need to change to Linux when XP support gone out.

Why wait? Start dual-booting now. It'll probably save a lot of grief with hardware compatibility issues later.

Re:!News (0, Flamebait)

Computershack (1143409) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718381)

Because all your software and hardware will work just as well won't it? Oh wait, no it won't.

Re:!News (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718423)

ahh daa darr durr dahh durr..

What the fuck did you expect!? (-1, Troll)

noundi (1044080) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718387)

Did any of you readers actually expect MS to create a new OS in such a short (for MS) period of time, that wouldn't be a copy of it's predecessor?

I know you all think it, and I know you've all said it but here it goes: Vista is shit, even shit would be insulted when being compared to Vista, and what goes for Windows 7 (aka Vista SP "insert number") will be as shitty as Vista. This is natural, there's only so much one can create from shit.

blah (1)

n3tcat (664243) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718391)

I don't even think the slashdot staff read the frontpage anymore. There's story dupes constantly now! I mean is it too much to ask that they take 10 minutes to skim the stories on the front two or three pages since they last posted a story?

Goodness me, what FUD (5, Interesting)

Toreo asesino (951231) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718397)

Some facts:
- Vista is barely slower than XP on hardware bought within the last 2 years. It was fairly slower on RTM for many reasons, but vastly improved drivers & some colossal patches have put that to bed now.
- Vista in fact speeds up some operations over XP by pre-caching commonly used stuff. This uses more memory, and is often confused for being "bloated" by actually using the memory that you blessed your computer with being able to use, for what in fact it was designed for - speed increase.
- Windows 7 is taking Vista and putting it on a diet while not fundamentally changing the architecture. If it works on Vista it'll work on W7. That's a stated design goal.

Thus, for performance: Expect Windows 7 to be more responsive to user-input, work on lower-ended machines, start up quicker, etc. Don't expect: CPU intensive apps (games for example) to suddenly speed up 50%; memory intensive apps to use any less memory. They won't - Windows 7 is an operating system, not an overclockers kit.

So, in other words.... (4, Funny)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718639)

If it works on Vista it'll work on W7.

So, in essence, Windows 7 represents a significant name change from Vista.

Re:So, in other words.... (4, Insightful)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718813)

If W7 can do the compatibility part right here, it's a good thing, not a reason to look down on it for not being different enough. How typical of Slashdot -- would you honestly ever be able to use the same logic about your favorite OS?

Re:Goodness me, what FUD (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718651)

Don't forgot restrictive DRM, tilt bits that cause massive system instability and prevent hardware upgrades without permission (re-authentication) from Microsoft.

Vista is significantly slower than XP. This is a fact and has been proven many times by many different people.

Re:Goodness me, what FUD (5, Informative)

Mascot (120795) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718671)

Vista is barely slower than XP on hardware bought within the last 2 years. It was fairly slower on RTM for many reasons, but vastly improved drivers & some colossal patches have put that to bed now.

When did this event occur? Last I tested Vista performance on this machine was with Crysis. That would be close to a year after Vista release. I got half the FPS compared to in XP. Half.

Apart from DX10 there is nothing in Vista that interests me that can't already be gotten for XP via third party applications. So far there aren't exactly a huge amount of DX10-only games, and unless the performance issue mentioned above has indeed been sorted it would be a moot point either way.

Re:Goodness me, what FUD (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718837)

Are you comparing Vista to XP, DX9 to DX10, or your graphics card's Vista drivers to its XP drivers?

(hint: it's a mix of all 3, but the last will make by far the most difference in a graphically-bound game)

Not 100% correct (4, Interesting)

Viol8 (599362) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718739)

"Don't expect: CPU intensive apps (games for example) to suddenly speed up 50%;"

Indeed , 50% is absurd. But they might speed up 5% or so depending on whether the process schedular and memory management have had a rewrite. For a machine with a lot of processes running and an app using a lot of memory those page and cache miss percentage can make a noticable difference as well as how intellgently the OS swaps in and out processes of varying priorities.

Re:Not 100% correct (1)

Toreo asesino (951231) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718877)

That's fair, and in fact Vista did have scheduler optimisations go into it (the link for which I can't find). So performance will vary, one hopes for the better.

Performance (1)

Lonewolf666 (259450) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718745)

This and the previous /. article link to reports from people who have tested the pre-beta. The results seem pretty clear:
1) The GUI feels more responsive.
2) The memory consumption is pretty much the same.
3) Benchmark tests show little to no difference.
So Windows 7 will probably be more fun to work with, but based on 2) and 3) you should not expect it to work on lower-ended machines compared to Vista. Overall, it looks like some GUI improvements and not much else.

Re:Performance (3, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718839)

What happens if you install thousands of software titles, remove them, install tens of drivers/updates, remove them, install huge suites like MS Office, update them...

If I saw "Snow Leopard is 2x faster than Leopard", I wouldn't buy it too. The beta (pre beta) lacks something. Actual, real life usage. Nobody is mad enough to use a pre-beta OS as their main OS. I got MS Virtual PC 7 here with bare bones XP SP3 installed. Trust me, that junk boots faster than your core Duo/Quad real PC because it is very heavily maintained, almost nothing installed, nothing in registry etc.

What matters is, does it care about how many apps installed, removed, running or not? In Apple's sense, there are some real big, explainable architectural reasons why a Adobe Suite CS4 installed Mac is not different from a cleanly installed Mac. MS just says "we optimised this, we optimised that" without huge underlying changes which will really cost them for a while. Like moving from a single user OS to a Unix OS which runs Mach kernel with a real weird filesystem.

Re:Goodness me, what FUD (1)

makomk (752139) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718919)

Vista in fact speeds up some operations over XP by pre-caching commonly used stuff. This uses more memory, and is often confused for being "bloated" by actually using the memory that you blessed your computer with being able to use, for what in fact it was designed for - speed increase.

There are two issues with this. Firstly, it's far too aggressive, so people have had issues with it kicking data out of memory that is actually needed at the time. Secondly, it uses hard disk bandwidth and seeks that (unlike memory) aren't exactly cheap, and this doesn't help performance.

same shit, different paint? (0, Redundant)

Tom (822) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718401)

So, they are essentially releasing Vista SP1 as "windos 7", right?

Given the development time, that shouldn't really come as a surprise to anyone. What did you expect? A total rewrite-from-scratch?

Re:same shit, different paint? (1)

richy freeway (623503) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718461)

Which might be true if Vista wasn't already at SP1.

Re:same shit, different paint? (1)

stmok (1331127) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718561)

Its more like: Windows 7 => Windows Vista Second Edition.

Re:same shit, different paint? (1, Flamebait)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718695)

Vista ME

Re:same shit, different paint? (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718825)

Huh? No, Vista SE. ME was a failure, in this case, Vista seems to be the failure, and W7 bringing the stuff in that should have been there from the start, like a more intelligent UAC feature. But MS would never call it Vista SE as the brand name is too tainted now. See also the Mojave Experiment.

Why would it be faster? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718411)

Performance is mostly determined by the program code and hardware latencies. The few things that the OS does have been tweaked and optimized for so long that any noticeable throughput increase would be a miracle. The aspect which can still see some improvement, latency, is not tested by the typical benchmarks. Another kind of improvement is to make the system just as fast but less "optimized", in other words, achieve the same performance with a clearer, more maintainable architecture. If Microsoft can deliver on these aspects, then Windows 7 does not need to be faster to be better. If.

MinKern anyone? (2, Interesting)

Amiralul (1164423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718457)

I read rumors about a minimal kernel to be used in the next Windows version. Will 7 skip it?

article = fud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718471)

this article is full of shit. how did it make it to slashdot? oh wait..^^

Re:article = fud (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718531)

my FP was removed as well. fucking /. cockheads, can't handle anything that doesn't suck up linux fanboys assholes.

An easy improvement with respect to Vista (1)

syngularyx (1070768) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718509)

An improvement could be a reduced number of versions in which it will come. How many versions MS will try to sell this time?

Re:An easy improvement with respect to Vista (1)

stmok (1331127) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718565)

I suspect it will be the same number as last time.

No Surprises Here (1)

rdnetto (955205) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718525)

Come on guys, its a pre-beta! We all know that Windows 7 is going to be a refined version of Vista, did you really expect them to actually do any thing significant so far? I'm guessing that the performance will only start to improve by the 2nd beta, when all the new features are implemented and they have fixed all the major bugs. Right now, it's little more than Vista with minor tweaks to the UI.

Re:No Surprises Here (4, Interesting)

ledow (319597) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718791)

"Come on guys, its a pre-beta! ... did you really expect them to actually do any thing significant so far?"

Yes. I pulled some facts off the Wiki but I think they are pretty accurate.

Windows Vista RTM: November 8, 2006.
Microsoft stated in 2007 that it is "scoping Windows 7 development to a three-year timeframe"
Release dates are supposed to be in the region of 2009 or 2010.

So, to me, that says that it's *at least* eighteen-months, two-years into development (or thereabouts). It's got another year to eighteen months to go. So, halfway through it's development process, we have *zip* that is actually useful to the average user (which is who it is supposedly aimed at) and nothing to entice business users. There are *no* performance improvements. None. Programmers don't magically add 50% performance after-the-fact, it's *design* that gives you performance.

Halfway through and we don't have a single groundbreaking feature. Nothing. Not even something to show off temporarily. Seriously, read through the Wiki page on "new features in Windows 7" and have a look at the features that are actually *HERE*, not the ones "promised"... remember, Windows Vista was going to have WinFS etc. It's completely embarassing. Instead of a "new operating system", we just have:

Vista, with no better performance, some unnecessary UI changes (purely to make gullible people pay to "retrain" on the new OS in my opinion), removal of lots of built-in applications, a "Health Centre", some claims about fantastic new features that this article proves aren't even in there yet (better performance, threading, etc.) or that only a handful of people in the world could get excited about.

What that tells me is that all these marvellous new features DO NOT EXIST in a reliable form. But I'd be showing them everywhere if they did just work, even only on one machine - I'd be booting it up in conferences, showing it in trade shows, making people WANT that feature that I haven't finished yet and which only works on 25% of machines while the programmers hack on it. But there's *nothing*.

Fortunately, I saw the Vista thing coming.

I had a job interview the other day where the main technically-literate person on the panel asked my opinion on Vista. Needless to say, I was wary of giving my reply in case it was interpreted as belligerent or dismissive, but the interviewer and I laughed and joked and told Vista anecdotes for about ten minutes *in the interview* once he realised that I shared his very-low opinion of the OS. (I got the job, by the way.) I'm pretty sure, at this point, that Windows 7 will be more of the same or worse. Promises, promises, promises and then sting the customer before they realise that they've bought a turkey and that actually it was only useful for the little sticker with the Product Key on it that lets you use its predecessor instead.

Please just stop... (4, Insightful)

Loibisch (964797) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718533)

Please just stop following every step of "Windows 7" which will probably not be out for years, despite anything Microsoft says.

The only thing those reports generate is the hype Microsofts wants around their unreleased OS to keep up hope in people dissatisfied by Vista. Yeah, this time it's all going to be better...sure.

Windows 7 is not special and it's not worth reporting every tidbit unless there's actually a product or a set-in-stone feature list.

Re:Please just stop... (1)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718897)

If I trusted MS not to be opportunistic and actually do deep level changes which will make those archaic SDK using idiots mad, I would seriously watch MS Windows 7 development.

Even today, they started to make changes which will be in favour of their big software friends on unreleased OS. The "It will run whatever Vista can run" gives a big clue.

In Apple terms, they don't say to developers "Switch from Carbon to Cocoa or your app won't run and there is nothing you can do to change it." That is what Apple says to Microsoft itself and Adobe, imagine that. MS Office had to deal with very strict gcc coming with XCode 3. Now they say it is one of the best MS Office done on OS X. Guess why? :)

Benchmarking some random shit more like (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718631)

What are we benchmarking, exactly?  And how can I verify it?

I view all these pre-release type benchmarks as so much aerial masturbation.  It's just nothing.

What are you guys testing anyway? (5, Insightful)

Stan Vassilev (939229) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718637)

The current release isn't a release candidate. It's not a beta. It's a PRE-beta. Microsoft have about at least 10 more months until they call Windows 7 done.

Steven Sinofsky specifically said in his PDC 2008 keynote: "please don't consider this build suitable for benchmarks", but does anyone listen? Nah, let's run the benchmarks! :)

Re:What are you guys testing anyway? (1)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718835)

Nooo! Don't ruin the fun of comparing a technical preview to an RTM release now! ;)

ive always questioned (0, Redundant)

nimbius (983462) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718649)

how a closed system like Windows gets truly benchmarked anyhow. its like having a car with a hood that doesnt open, but seems to go quite a bit faster than your old car.

Why are OSes expected to do more faster? (3, Insightful)

kklein (900361) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718667)

Okay, this has bothered me for over a decade.

What makes anyone think that the next release of an OS is going to be faster? It's not going to be. I don't care who developed it, either, whether it be the giant of Redmond, the hipster of Cupertino, or a bunch of unwashed shut-ins writing lines of code in their moms' basements. Every iteration of an OS is actually going to be slower, and that is just a consequence of it doing more.

The only real question, then, is if the balance between the added functionality and the slowdown is coming down enough on the functionality side to stop people from getting pissed off. For XP, the balance was nice. For Vista, it's not. For Tiger, it was. For Leopard, I guess it's not for some people (but it is for me). Linux doesn't do anything regardless of distro or update, so it's kind of hard to talk about.

The point of the story is this: I don't actually care if something doesn't run that fast, because I'll probably replace my hardware before that OS runs its course, and it'll work great on the next kit. All I really care about is if it runs well enough to enjoy the added benefits of that extra code.

Re:Why are OSes expected to do more faster? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25718879)

I disagree. As the hardware is getting faster, just using the same OS makes things faster over time. The OS developer should aim not to absorb all the hardware improvement with OS syrup.

If W98 on the best hardware of the day could boot in 30 seconds, I expect Vista on the best hardware of the day to be better.

And that is just based on the assumption that an OS needs to keep adding features. I would (for example) like my XP to have easier tools for disbaling unwanted startup crap. This could enable it run faster for me most days and would represent an improvement, If SP4 had this, I would regard SP4 as a speedup, even on the same hardware.

Re:Why are OSes expected to do more faster? (1)

chord.wav (599850) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718933)

While I agree, it usually happens that the first version of the code for a particular task just works, while the following versions are more polished, improve speed, reliability, etc.
They are fond of the "make it work, (then) make it fast, (and then) make it nice" motto.

BTW, I'm glad that after 10 years you could finally get it out of your chest!

Time for Microsoft to [Start] over (4, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718769)

Microsoft's obsession with backward compatibility is killing it.

For home and gaming, they need to keep XP and disable it from being used in a business network... let that horse run as far as it can.

For business and other work, they need to write a brand new kernel and everything and start over learning from all previous mistakes and discarding backward compatibility... natively. Then build a VM compatibility layer with the intent that people will use it in the process of weaning themselves from Win32 and all that backward compatibility and supporting broken applications nonsense.

Been saying this for a long time and will keep saying it. I said this before Mac OS X was announced. Apple, it would seem, had the same idea and it is working VERY well for them. The compatibility VM sucked bad which actually prompted people to upgrade their apps even faster. And no one stopped using Apple over it. And no one stopped developing software for Apple computers over it. It was a burden on users and developers to make that change, but in the end it was the best move.

Microsoft is another story. When you are in control of everything, that is precisely what you stand to lose. But ultimately, I see things are coming to a head and Apple sees it too. No matter what Microsoft does, they will lose. They need to make plans to limit their loses and plan for the future -- not just two years of profit forecasting.

It may boot faster thanks to another photocopy (5, Interesting)

Ilgaz (86384) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718785)

The very interesting thing about OS X 10.5 (Leopard) boot process is: It does nothing in order. It is parallel booting, firing all OS startup stuff at once and expects to do their jobs. That happens thanks to launchd architecture which I have no clue why not adopted by Linux or *BSD.

Here is its presentation by the inventor of launchd
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=1781045834610400422 [google.com]
(in 8:00")

That is one of underrated features/changes of Leopard. Now the term "photocopy" comes from this: They do something like launchd without using the underlying Unix logic and architecture. So, there is a huge chance that it won't be scaled. I have really lost count of how many kernel extensions, startup items, daemons running on my Leopard but it boots exactly same speed as it was cleanly installed for first time. Just like I really don't care about 1000+ .plist (pref) files on my user directory.

They named it "parallel booting" or something, some story about it on http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9119230&intsrc=hm_list [computerworld.com]

Performance (1)

XavidX (1117783) | more than 5 years ago | (#25718883)

Well lets look at history.
Wind 98 needed more powerful Computer to run it after windows 95
windows xp needed more a powerful Computer to run it after windows 98
Vista ... well I think we all know what we think of vista. But generally we would have thought you would need a better computer to run vista. Its just all the bugs.

So now if Windows 7 Has more features, is stable and as bug free as any version of windows can be, and offers the same performance as vista.

It might actually have good perfomance when running on a low end machine at the time of its release.

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