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XP Users Are Willing To Give Windows 7 a Chance

kdawson posted about 5 years ago | from the light-at-the-end-of-the-long-tunnel-that-is-vista dept.

Microsoft 720

Harry writes "PC World and Technologizer conducted a survey of 5,000 people who use Windows XP as their primary operating system. Many have no plans to leave it, and 80% will be unhappy when Microsoft completely discontinues it. And attitudes towards Vista remain extremely negative. But a majority of those who know something about Windows 7 have a positive reaction. More important, 70 percent of respondents who have used Windows 7 say they like it, which is a sign that Windows 7 stands a chance of being what Vista never was: an upgrade good enough to convince most XP users to switch."

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Try Windows 7? (3, Insightful)

squiggly12 (1298191) | about 5 years ago | (#29100941)

I would, but with some of the problems I had with Vistax64 (could have been hardware issues), I might wait until SP1 at least. Hell, it took me that long to migrate from Windows 2000. I waited until frakking SP1 was out!

Rob Malda wishes to make an announcement (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29100971)

In celebration of Wikipedia's 3 millionth article, Rob "CmdrTaco" Malda would like to announce that he will be participating in the "Gangbang 3 Million" event in order to get in the Guiness Book of World Records for "Most Dicks Put In Your Asshole in One Week". The event will be held in Las Vegas on September 11th, 2009 at the MGM Grand Casino. If you would like to sign up to be a part of this momentous event please go to [] . Signing up here will automatically enter you in the drawing to be the first in line to fuck Rob's asshole and for the consolation prize of sloppy seconds. After the event is over, DVDs and Blu-Rays will go on sale on December 15th exclusively through Sourceforge, Inc's retail site at a special 30% off discounted price. Later in January these items will be available for a wide release at 100s of other retailers but at the full retail price. Rob Malda and the rest of the staff at Sourceforge, Inc. hope to see you there!

Re:Try Windows 7? (3, Insightful)

PIBM (588930) | about 5 years ago | (#29101007)

What's stopping you from trying the beta ? Put up a new harddrive / empty a small partition, turn on your AHCI and install windows 7!

Time to put those 8gb of ram to some use besides in linux :)

Re:Try Windows 7? (4, Funny)

rhook (943951) | about 5 years ago | (#29101137)

No need to wait for sp1, Windows 7 might as well be Vista SP3 with a new UI and more efficient code.

Re:Try Windows 7? (0, Troll)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | about 5 years ago | (#29101139)

As an XP user all I can say is GO TO HELL Microsoft. I am done with your carnival sideshow of needless upgrades and pointless eye candy.

Once XP is completely dead, then I guess I'm done with Windows entirely.

Re:Try Windows 7? (2, Insightful)

Kratisto (1080113) | about 5 years ago | (#29101235)

There's no such thing as a needless upgrade. Someone will use it. I, for one, welcome our 64 bit overlords.

(Yes, there's a 64 bit XP, and yes, it has horrible driver support)

Re:Try Windows 7? (-1, Troll)

DAldredge (2353) | about 5 years ago | (#29101311)

It amazes me that on a site like /. such unsupported garbage is moderated as Interesting.

Re:Try Windows 7? (0, Troll)

tacarat (696339) | about 5 years ago | (#29101345)

It's a statement of personal opinion. What kind of support is needed? Would you require such support if it was a positive statement? Or are you astroturfing?

Re:Try Windows 7? (0, Troll)

Desler (1608317) | about 5 years ago | (#29101399)

Or are you astroturfing?

Oh heaven forbid anyone thinks something different than the slashdot groupthink! You clearly must be an astroturfer!

Re:Try Windows 7? (1, Insightful)

vistapwns (1103935) | about 5 years ago | (#29101431)

Notice, that whenever someone defends MS or Windows against mindless fud, they get called an astroturfer, like automatically? Like there are really 5 million paid-for MS employees surfing the web telling the fudders to get stuffed. Certain people just can't handle that someone actually, gasp, disagrees with them.

Re:Try Windows 7? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101361)


There, I fixed that for you.

Re:Try Windows 7? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101417)

^ This is the typical slashdotter.

Sitting around seething in hatred towards Microsoft, clinging to Windows until the Year Of The Linux Desktop finally arrives.

Re:Try Windows 7? (2, Interesting)

InlawBiker (1124825) | about 5 years ago | (#29101449)

It's a big plus that embedded, low-power 3d graphic chipsets like Intel's x4500 are finally ready for Microsoft. When Vista first came out the 3d processors simply were not there on the budget machines. It is important to add the 3d effects to the UI, no matter what anybody says. But it's funny how my wife's old Macbook with the ancient GMA 950 chip runs OS-X liquid smooth.

Re:Try Windows 7? (4, Insightful)

tsa (15680) | about 5 years ago | (#29101457)

Once XP is completely dead, then I guess I'm done with Windows entirely.
The fact that you still run XP shows you need Windows. I bet you will be running Win7 in the future.

Re:Try Windows 7? (4, Funny)

the_humeister (922869) | about 5 years ago | (#29101461)

As an XP user all I can say is GO TO HELL Microsoft. I am done with your carnival sideshow of needless upgrades and pointless eye candy.

Once XP is completely dead, then I guess I'm done with Windows entirely.

OK. So what exactly will you move on to next then? Mac OS X with the same number of upgrades and pointless eye candy? Other Linux/BSD distributions that also have the same number of upgrades and pointless eye candy? Or are you just going to forgo all that and use the command-line exclusively?

XP users take it up the ass and like it (-1, Troll)

Alien Being (18488) | about 5 years ago | (#29100943)

Now they're ready for a bigger dick.

The real test is not users (4, Insightful)

quarterbuck (1268694) | about 5 years ago | (#29100981)

The real test of Windows 7 won't be users, it would be enterprise customers. There are still a lot of large Windows setups which have not upgraded from XP (Investment Banks and their "excel sheet departments" for ex.). The decision to switch would in that case be taken by Sysadmins and the like.

Re:The real test is not users (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101181)

I don't see any motivation for them to switch now either. XP will keep getting critical security updates well into 2014. If it works for them, they have no reason to move everything to windows 7 just yet.

Re:The real test is not users (1)

dagamer34 (1012833) | about 5 years ago | (#29101479)

Software support is one thing, and hardware support is another. Though I know businesses will still stick old operating systems on brand new hardware, I find that the quicker the "public" switches to a new OS, the faster it will be come into ready acceptance by the IT crowd, and the sooner software vendors will have to support Windows 7 fully. I should note, that to this day, some software vendors STILL don't support Windows Vista. Because of the differing software architectures from XP to Vista, trying to skip Vista and going directly to Windows 7 won't work very well in terms of software compatibility. Windows 7 being extremely compatible with Vista means that writing software for Windows 7 is basically writing software for Vista. Which means, they would have benefited from doing the same thing they are going to be doing now 2 years ago. Oh well, hopefully the launch of Windows 7 is big. The more popular and widely adopted it is, the sooner Windows XP will be gone in consumer PCs.

Re:The real test is not users (5, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#29101233)

Nope. Sorry, but nope. SysAdmins are the ones who have to suffer from changes, they're not the ones that make or even decide them. There are 3 deciding factors when it comes to a system switch:

1) Requirements of a top important application
2) Golf partners of decision makers
3) Investment cycles

Only the first reason is one that is based on technical issues, and even in those the average Admin (and sometimes even CTO) has little if any say in. Essentially, if MS wants to "force" enterprise customers to update, they need to nudge the makers of important enterprise applications (Autodesk, SAP...) to require newer systems.

Re:The real test is not users (1, Insightful)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 years ago | (#29101269)

Meh, that "proof" is as useless as ever. Enterprise customers are always, always slow and they try to minimize every possible upgrade they must make. But when push comes to shove they'll take the smallest bump possible, which will be Windows. The business case for an upgrade is almost always negative, for whatever small gains the OS gives there's the cost of software, hardware, updating any and all guides and training, administration procedures, scripting etc. which makes it basically a "dentist project". Nobody wants to go but if you don't it'll only get worse and the toothache in the long run cost you more than going. But with the "not on this quarter" mentality nothing gets replaced until it really has to. I expect most enterprise customers to finish their upgrades around a year or two before XPs end-of-life, no sooner.

Re:The real test is not users (1)

peipas (809350) | about 5 years ago | (#29101299)

That sounds more like an argument against upgrading to Office 2007, which I think is a far greater stretch for the enterprise customer than Windows 7.

Re:The real test is not users (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101471)

True, but enterprise IT tends to upgrade Windows/Office together because the support cycles are similar.

Resigned to it (0, Troll)

Gothmolly (148874) | about 5 years ago | (#29100989)

People still using XP are the hardcore, the nerds, and the fearful. 70% of them like Win7 because they know Vista sucks donkey balls, and they know XP is hitting the toilet RSN. Its more resignation than excitement.

Re:Resigned to it (4, Insightful)

Brian Gordon (987471) | about 5 years ago | (#29101147)

Vista got bad press and users think they're being smart by eschewing the upgrade. "Vista, I heard bad things. XP is fine." But this is the same crowd that bought an ipod because all their friends had one. They would upgrade just for the newest thing, if it weren't suddenly hip and edgy and retro to claim to be an XP purist. So when they hear Windows 7, they automatically kick into MUST UPGRADE mode and, lacking any bad press, don't have any reason to adopt the negative position.

If Vista was so awful, Windows 7 isn't all that different. Vista was fine (when heavily reconfigured); Microsoft just needs to shed the bad reputation of the Vista name to get the dumb users back.

Re:Resigned to it (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#29101277)

Vista is the new coke...

But it's not different from any other MS OS. The first version sucked huge balls. Just as much as the original XP did. XP was inferior to 2k before SP1, some would argue even until SP2. The same applies to Vista. Vista SP1 is a fairly good and well supported system. Better than XP... I have both on different machines and I see little difference in performance. But that also means Vista is no "must upgrade" system. I don't get any more out of Vista than I get out of XP.

I took a look at Win7 and it's nice. It's an ok system, but no "must upgrade" system either. The same will apply to Win7 that did to every system before it: Wait 'til SP1. Maybe 'til SP2.

Re:Resigned to it (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101185)

Funnily enough, I've been giving Windows 7 (Vista Plus) a go on a dual boot system when I have time. It's slick and has some nifty features but poor backwards compatibility, ugly interface, and death by mouse click usability is driving me nuts. If OS X worked on generic systems and was cheap, or Linux just worked without the bollocks "community" attitude I'd ditch Windows TODAY and feel relieved.

There's just so many arbitrary decision made by Microsoft it's stupid. Poor DOS support for games. Bad move. Forcing .NET on everyone. Bad move. API's multiplying exponentially. Bad move. Forcing their own media formats. Bad move. Braindead userland security. Bad move. The worlds richest company playing party donations bother ways. Bad move. Fragmentation of export versions. Bad move.

I'm sick of overbearing politicians. I'm sick of Hollywood. I'm sick of Microsoft.

Re:Resigned to it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101275)

I actually somewhat agree with this. You can group me in that category. Screw vista, I like XP -- but it is near the end of it's life cycle.

Windows 7? (0, Offtopic)

bogaboga (793279) | about 5 years ago | (#29101011)

I still wonder why Microsoft chose the name "Windows 7". Any ideas? For all other OS names, there appeared to be a meaning behind those choices, but for Windows 7, I labor to find a reason.

Re:Windows 7? (1)

PIBM (588930) | about 5 years ago | (#29101057)

7 is a lucky number.

They needed it!

Re:Windows 7? (1, Informative)

Goldberg's Pants (139800) | about 5 years ago | (#29101157)


No, it's named that because that's how many years bad luck you'll get from installing it.

Re:Windows 7? (1)

JeremyGNJ (1102465) | about 5 years ago | (#29101073)

My guess is....they spent a lot of marketing dollars and found that people generally like the number 7.

Re:Windows 7? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101107)

Vista was NT 6, so I guess they wanted it to sound like an upgrade. But it turns out that Windows 7 is actually NT 6.1, so who really knows.

Re:Windows 7? (1)

SpaceLifeForm (228190) | about 5 years ago | (#29101155)


Microsoft believes the 7th time is the charm.

Re:Windows 7? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101421)

The 4 versions of NT, ME, 2003 and 2008 don't count? Not to mention the various versions up to 3.1

Re:Windows 7? (5, Informative)

The Orange Mage (1057436) | about 5 years ago | (#29101159)

They arrived at 7 for the version number in this way: Windows 1.0, 2.0, and 3.0 lines are self-explanatory. The NT4 and Windows 95/98/ME family were all part of the 4.x version of Windows. Win2000 and XP were 5.x, so naturally Vista was 6.0. That leaves us at 7 for the new Windows.

Re:Windows 7? (4, Interesting)

Keen Anthony (762006) | about 5 years ago | (#29101231)

I've thought about this a lot. I feel Microsoft is trying to say that its returned to the roots of Windows. It's been many years since a Windows release was formally identified by a standard version number. It's very common now for software to have more eye-catching abstractly descriptive version identifiers like Pro, Lite, Special Edition, etc. Standard version numbers for an OS like Windows communicates a sense of a return to old school software efficiency and productivity.

Sounds a little silly maybe, but follow me a sec. "Windows 3.11" was just a piece of software; cold and boring. NT was "new technology". It communicated a sense of industrial strength computing. The Year-based Windows releases were all about being modern. You needed them to be modern. "Me" and "XP" were attempts at being trendy. Multimedia was standard, and Windows XP communicated a new kind of "Xcitement", "Xperience", etc. Vista is the post modern, post multimedia OS, communicating the idea that it's forward looking.

Windows 7 is simple, plain, and in the West, comforting. It's lucky number seven. It sounds like it's a serious operating system that is focused on doing its job, and not blinding me with flashy trends. It sounds like an operating system I can trust. In any case, that's the marketing strategy I got from the name. I have no specific insight into Redmond's actual reason.

Re:Windows 7? (1)

Stormwatch (703920) | about 5 years ago | (#29101265)

I still wonder why Microsoft chose the name "Windows 7".

Keep in mind, MS owns Bungie... []

Re:Windows 7? (1, Funny)

GrahamCox (741991) | about 5 years ago | (#29101307)

As they've always wanted to be as cool as Apple, it's obvious - this is their chance to have their "System 7". Pity that was almost 20 years ago...

DRM? (1, Interesting)

OrangeTide (124937) | about 5 years ago | (#29101013)

Does Windows 7 have more DRM or less than Windows XP? I think my decision to switch will be primarily biased along that criteria.

Re:DRM? (1)

bignetbuy (1105123) | about 5 years ago | (#29101081)

7 times as much DRM!
7 times better than Vista!
7 dollars (US) cheaper than XP! ...
damnit, wrong meme. ...
In Soviet Russia, 7 owns you. ...
Ok, I'll put down the bottle.

Re:DRM? (4, Insightful)

marklar1 (670468) | about 5 years ago | (#29101133)

The RC Release Candidate is downloadable for another 2 days (until the 20th, I believe) just try it.

The DRM seems like it always has...if you own the media, or it is DRM free, then you shouldn't have a problem. The amount of annoying dialogs for permissions is wayyy less than Vista. It is smooth, fast, better laid, and I've not had a single crash or let down over the last few weeks of trying it out. The layout is much cleaner, OS X users will immediately "get" the dock (whether you like it or not is another issue)...

My main curiousity was the Media Center (got a deal on a PC from a friend that is dedicated to that purpose, leaving me to do my "work" on an old PowerMac) and it is amazingly good vs. Vista's complete F%^%*!? dissapointment.
I was adamant that MS owed Vista MC users some love, and felt shafted to need an OS to finally get a WMC that works, but this is soooo much better all the way around...and @ the pre-ordered $49 goes a long, long way to fixing the hurt.

The RC will work well into 2010, so freakin' load it up and see for yourself...what do you have to loose...?

For the record, my main machines have been macs since 84, occasional Win and Nix experiences. I'm overdue for a new desktop, hate Apple's choice of iMac with fixed graphics and screen, or a $2000 Pro Mac sucks... This could really be the jump ship point for me to be a reverse switcher...

Re:DRM? (3, Insightful)

cyn1c77 (928549) | about 5 years ago | (#29101339)

, so freakin' load it up and see for yourself...what do you have to loose [sic]...?


and "time is money, friend!"

Re:DRM? (1)

dangitman (862676) | about 5 years ago | (#29101433)

... better laid...

Ewwwww... Now I really don't want to know the details of your "testing methodology" if that's a requirement.

Re:DRM? (1)

Brian Gordon (987471) | about 5 years ago | (#29101173)

Does Windows 7 have more DRM or less than Windows XP?

Is that even a sentence? What?

If it supports more DRMed formats than before, is that "having more DRM"? If you mean Windows activation, it's business as usual.. you put in the key and it registers on the activation servers.

Re:DRM? (2, Informative)

shutdown -p now (807394) | about 5 years ago | (#29101191)

Does Windows 7 have more DRM or less than Windows XP? I think my decision to switch will be primarily biased along that criteria.

You can do everything in 7 that you could do in XP (i.e. there are no new restrictions on existing stuff). On the other hand, it has new DRM for stuff which you can't handle without supporting some - such as BluRay.

I'm committed to Windows 7. (4, Insightful)

olsmeister (1488789) | about 5 years ago | (#29101021)

Why? Because XP came pre-installed on my last computer, and Windows 7 will come pre-installed on my next one.

Re:I'm committed to Windows 7. (5, Funny)

popeyethesailor (325796) | about 5 years ago | (#29101193)

I bet your VCR has 12:00:00 on it too :P

Re:I'm committed to Windows 7. (1)

peipas (809350) | about 5 years ago | (#29101347)

The term "committed" notwithstanding, I similarly will not be upgrading to the latest Windows release ever. My laptop, which I purchased to be powerful with discrete graphics, etc., runs Vista fine. Hell if I'm going to pay for a fancy new coat of wax. If I'm still with Windows, it will be because it's included with the next hardware I purchase.

so they've rebranded vista... (2, Interesting)

mrboyd (1211932) | about 5 years ago | (#29101027)

and now that the various device drivers for vista works people like it... Is it a feat of engineering or marketing?

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | about 5 years ago | (#29101083)

More less. FWIW having ran the RC for a while, I hope they improve it a lot between that an release. Truthfully, though I'm normally a Mac user anyways, on my Windows machines I prefer Vista to 7 (and XP to Vista in turn). I'm sure 7 has some nifty features that I haven't discovered yet, but it really drags on a machine that ran XP and even Vista ok. For a while it was eating 100% of my RAM until I noticed that the .NET Runtime Optimization service (or something named pretty close to that - not on the Windows machine ATM) was the culprit. Turned that off and the machine was still near unuseable. Traced further problems back to a Media Center Extender related service - turned that off and again, improvement, but the system is still draggy compared to when it ran Vista.

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (1)

Lews Therin Telamon (229342) | about 5 years ago | (#29101121)

I have to say that I have had the opposite experience with the RC. I think my system is at least as fast as a fresh XP install, and my hardware is not new at all. I never tried Vista on this machine, but the overall interface change was not worth the hassles for Vista, for 7 I think the new launch bar alone is worth it.

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (1)

Brian Gordon (987471) | about 5 years ago | (#29101189)

If you have some ".NET Runtime Optimization service" running, you're doing Windows wrong. If you're going to use Windows you have to trim the fat.

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (2, Interesting)

michaelhood (667393) | about 5 years ago | (#29101447)

As someone running Windows 7 final (MSDN), I have to say that it's pretty ridiculous to expect end users to "trim the fat" from their OS.

That said, I haven't had any such issues except once when I opened the system information dialog and inadvertently triggered the refresh of my Windows Experience Index measurement. This spawned a background process to run some benchmarks, and continued running after I closed the dialog. Took me a few minutes to figure out what was going on.

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101387)

For a while it was eating 100% of my RAM until I noticed that the .NET Runtime Optimization service (or something named pretty close to that - not on the Windows machine ATM) was the culprit.

.NET Runtime optimization is actually one of the neater technologies in the MS world. In short, it's compiling native language libraries for commonly used interfaces that would have to be run in a VM. All you need to do is leave the computer alone for a short while so it can chug through. You can explicitly command it to finish the queued compilation tasks per the instructions here. []

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (2, Informative)

MBGMorden (803437) | about 5 years ago | (#29101427)

.NET Runtime optimization is actually one of the neater technologies in the MS world. In short, it's compiling native language libraries for commonly used interfaces that would have to be run in a VM. All you need to do is leave the computer alone for a short while so it can chug through. You can explicitly command it to finish the queued compilation tasks per the instructions here.

When it's working properly that's about the just of it - however my machine (a 2.5ghz Quad core with 4gb ram) had nearly a week of being left alone to chug through, with 3 or 4 reboots in between - didn't ever finish up. I also tried the stated command since it was suggested in a google query I had made, but it didn't clear anything up.

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101095)

If only I had mod points and there was a (-1 Douchebag) categroy... if only

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (1)

Keen Anthony (762006) | about 5 years ago | (#29101247)

A little of both, but I gotta believe it's mostly marketing combined with the maturity of Vista-focused third-party software development.

Re:so they've rebranded vista... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101271)

Clever marketing. Vista doesn't get mentioned while astroturf promotions are used to piggyback each other. It's classic stuff and meant to remove the arguments from the frame and create the impression of momentum. It's not so much that Windows 7 is great it's the absense of people saying it's crap, and the fact that people are herd animals and will follow if everyone else looks like they're supporting it. However, the fact Microsoft still has a distributer lock-in and is manipulating people like this should make people ask questions.

The Microsoft blogs, the casual looking offices, design decisions seemingly made by over-promoted middle managers, the bungled attempts to make their web presence look chummy. It's a dumb and ass-kissy mask over a corporate machine that has no desire to fade away. Their OS is forced down peoples necks. They've usurped IT training so it becomes less howto and more howto use their product. They give their OS away for almost free to cash strapped government departments to maintain their ecosystem. The problem isn't the answers but asking the right questions.

Windows 7 (2, Interesting)

DaMattster (977781) | about 5 years ago | (#29101035)

I acutally like Windows 7, it crusies on my low-end, Sam's Club Dell Inspiron 1525 Celeron with 2GB of RAM. I still have plenty of memory for doing other things. Gnome and KDE have some catching up to do again. Looks like Microsoft took a page from the open source play book of only accepting quality code. That said, I am still pro open source but, at my job, we are going to Windows 7 so I'd better learn it, kicking and screaming.

Re:Windows 7 (5, Interesting)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | about 5 years ago | (#29101203)

That said, I am still pro open source but, at my job, we are going to Windows 7 so I'd better learn it, kicking and screaming.

At my job, we're all learning linux, latex, openoffice and hiring programmers to get us off MS software all together. Granted, I'm the boss, so it makes it easier, but it is still a very gradual process. Also, my employees have started bringing in their personal laptops with Ubuntu on them -- I figure now is as good a time as any. Our IT department will try to get us to upgrade to Win7 but I will fight the upgrade train as much as politically sane to do, because I'm just not interested in learning it and I'm really tired of getting screwed by MS with every other OS. I keep XP around because lots of software runs only on it and nothing else, especially PCs that control equipment. These PCs will need to stay, but we no longer need dedicated windows desktops in the group, the last one is now dual-booting to debian. Everything else except the equipment drivers is mac or linux.

Re:Windows 7 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101213)

How does that system qualify as "low-end"?

What makes you think GNOME or KDE need "catching up"?

What makes you think Windows 7 contains "quality code" (by which, Vista is pretty much the exact same OS, so you're also saying Vista is quality)?

Re:Windows 7 (1)

Gothmolly (148874) | about 5 years ago | (#29101285)

I can't decide if this is a poor troll, or an epic fail. There is no "learning" Windows - if your job requires you to "learn" your operating system, and you're not a desktop tech, you're spending too much time dicking around with fonts, themes, and control panel widgets. And why the gratuitous Unix desktop bashing?

Re:Windows 7 (1)

Kr4u53 (955252) | about 5 years ago | (#29101335)

I wouldn't call 2 GB of ram very low-end.

Re:Windows 7 (5, Insightful)

D Ninja (825055) | about 5 years ago | (#29101355)

I may get modded troll for this, but open source != quality code. In theory, it is more likely that that is the case, but I have seen some open source code that made me die a little on the inside. Microsoft's developers are generally smart people who know their job. Many of the issues that ships with the operating system results from very poor (and too much, IMO) management. (For the record, I am not a Microsoft employee...I just like following various companies, of which Microsoft is one.)

Windows 7 - 64 bit (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101071)

If it were 32 bit only I wouldn't touch it, but the 64 bit (and thus the ability to have more than 4 gigs of ram) is quite appealing. However when testing the RC I found my Hauppage stuff didn't work, nor will it since they would rather I buy a new USB device then have them write drivers for it (understandable from a business point of view, but annoying). Also quite a few ActiveX controls don't work which depending on what sites (or SSL VPN's) you use may cause issues. I am also not quite sure as to where all the "better" stuff is, to me the interface is pretty much the same, local file search still sucks (where's my WinFS huh?) and I need to install a lot of third party and open source software to make the system usable and safe (like backups, AV, etc.) which I get built in with my Linux distros. It looks like enough stuff might be broken/painful that switching to a Linux desktop is a possibility for me.

name 1 really new thing. (0, Troll)

markringen (1501853) | about 5 years ago | (#29101079)

name 1 really new thing. and no DirectX11 isn't one of them as that's also going to ship to vista... so there is truly nothing new, and it's also slower with games even vs vista if you have vista simply don't upgrade "it's a waste of your well earned cash"...

Re:name 1 really new thing. (1)

markringen (1501853) | about 5 years ago | (#29101183)

.,.,. stop. typoRus.

Windows Vista is a good product (5, Insightful)

onionman (975962) | about 5 years ago | (#29101085)

I have Macs on my desktops, and I run Linux for my number crunching machines. So, I'm no Microsoft fanboy. However, it seems to me that Microsoft actually tried to do the right thing with Vista... namely they built a reasonably secure operating system from the ground up and decided to actually enforce the programming paradigms. The problem isn't with Vista, it's with the antiquated applications that still need tons of shims to work. For example, I recently installed Quicken on my father in law's XP machine and discovered that it wouldn't work unless running as an admin account, which is simply absurd! So, I worry that Windows 7 is just a light weight version of Vista with most of the security rolled back so that insecure applications will be able to continue running and users won't complain about their favorite applications breaking.

secure! (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101087)

And this time, unlike Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows 98SE, Windows ME, Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, and Windows Vista, Windows 7 really will be secure. Really!

Re:secure! (2, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | about 5 years ago | (#29101313)

It is. A lot of old exploits don't work anymore, just as every time. And just like every time before, we'll get new exploits.

Generally though we'll see a lot more social engineering and "you have to install this or something horrible happens", as well as a shift more towards third party applications, as we've seen already. The security hole in MS systems these days isn't Windows anymore. It's mostly plugins for Browsers, at least for now. The new Windows is Flash and PDF reader. At least 'til Adobe gets its act together.

pretty much have to (1)

fermion (181285) | about 5 years ago | (#29101089)

There isn't much choice on this issue. MS Windows XP is 10 years old. It has been stable for six years or so, but is now showing sign of age. On my older XP machines I am going to have to do a clean install to get them running, and the machines are older anyway, so they are not working really well. The Vista machines I have seen do not seem to work real well, have trouble doing simple things, so I don't think Vista is the way to go. But if MS Windows 7 does work, and if the major apps work, I certainly would want to try it. I suspect it will be at least a year before it is stable enough.

Re:pretty much have to (1)

peipas (809350) | about 5 years ago | (#29101379)

This is a reasonable point. However, you mention that the XP machines are no longer running well. If Microsoft fixes this so their operating systems no longer fail to do simple tasks after a set period, will there remain any impetus to continue upgrading to the latest version of Windows?

Do the users/sysadmins want to change? (4, Insightful)

tecker (793737) | about 5 years ago | (#29101099)

The thing with the businesses is CHANGE. See they have this software they know works with XP, Sysadmins who know XP front and back, users who are used to XP, zero in the buy-new-machines fund, and are looking to save money anywhere they can. To justify buying a new version of Windows might be hard since, despite its age, XP works.

Our university department is cash strapped right now and despite heavy discounts we will NOT be moving to 7 unless it comes installed on a computer. We might if we are lucky get it in the 2011 FY budget. Unlikely though. Our users are so used to the look and feel that they likely would balk at the 7 upgraded look, and ask us to put back in the "classic" look. Yes the Windows 2000 look. Not that new XP Luna stuff. 2000. Thats why we are not switching to 7 anytime soon. The users could care less and our administrators wont give us the money.

Plus, were a little lazy and dont want to reinstall all of those comptuers.

make xp look like 7 (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101103)

just download the windows 7 wallpapers [] and stick them on your XP machine.

Most of us XP users don't have a choice (0)

Orion Blastar (457579) | about 5 years ago | (#29101115)

since Microsoft will soon stop XP support and updates, and refuse to patch any more security exploits. We might as well run Windows 95, 98, ME, 2000 because Microsoft don't update those systems anymore either.

At least Windows 7 Pro has an XP virtual machine, but we don't know how compatible it is yet.

Windows 7 is a Service Pack to Windows Vista practically, and it is like when Windows XP came out as a Service Pack to Windows 2000. Windows 2000 was version 5.0 and Windows XP was version 5.1, Windows Vista is version 6.0 and Windows 7 is version 6.1.

Since Windows XP was better than Windows 2000, we figure that Windows 7 will be better than Windows Vista.

Sadly a lot of XP machines will need RAM upgrades if not video and hard drive upgrades to run Windows 7 as I heard even 1G of RAM is not enough and that Windows 7 is a bit of a hard drive and resource hog like Vista is, because XP runs faster because it has less features and fewer services that start up upon bootup. Windows 7 tries to make it for it by having faster graphics effects, and making use of dual core or multi core technology. Most Windows XP installs don't make use of dual core or higher systems as one has to by the non uniprocessor version of XP to use more than one core or processor.

Re:Most of us XP users don't have a choice (4, Insightful)

compro01 (777531) | about 5 years ago | (#29101245)

since Microsoft will soon stop XP support and updates, and refuse to patch any more security exploits.

"Soon" is not until 2014.

Most Windows XP installs don't make use of dual core or higher systems as one has to by the non uniprocessor version of XP to use more than one core or processor.

Cores and processors are different things in Microsoft's view. Cores are processors cores, while processors are the physical CPU packages. XP will use dual and quad core processors fine (7 arguably does a better job of distributing load across the processors, but that's beside the point), just you can't use a uniprocessor version of it on a machine with 2+ CPU sockets.

Re:Most of us XP users don't have a choice (2, Insightful)

Osty (16825) | about 5 years ago | (#29101445)

At least Windows 7 Pro has an XP virtual machine, but we don't know how compatible it is yet.

Why not? It's been available since the RC. You do need hardware virtualization support, but that's easy to check [] (I dislike GRC because of his irrational fearmongering of UPnP, but this tool is the quickest way to check if you have virtualization available on your CPU). It's based on the mature VirtualPC product and running full XP, so if an app worked in XP it should work fine in virtualization.

Windows 7 is a Service Pack to Windows Vista practically, and it is like when Windows XP came out as a Service Pack to Windows 2000. Windows 2000 was version 5.0 and Windows XP was version 5.1, Windows Vista is version 6.0 and Windows 7 is version 6.1.

First, read about why Windows 7 is 6.1 [] . Cliff notes: app compatibility, because too many apps are stupid and don't handle major version bumps properly (witness all of the apps from Windows XP that wouldn't install on Vista simply because it was 5.1 to 6.0 and the installer assumed major version would always be 5 and so just checked minor version, resulting in 0 less than 1 == not supported). Win7 is certainly an enhancement on top of Vista, but then Vista was an enhancement on top of XP (really on top of the Server 2003 codebase, but that came from XP), and XP was an advancement on top of 2000, and so on. Some things haven't changed, like the new WDDM driver model that Vista introduced (though Win7 did bump to WDDM 1.1, which allows for easier/better drivers, especially in the realm of gpus). Other things have changed dramatically, though you wont really notice such as the DWM now being much more efficient, especially if coupled with a WDDM 1.1 driver (nVidia, ATI, and Intel already have such drivers available). In Vista, DWM memory usage would grow linearly with the number of windows open. In Windows 7 with a WDDM 1.1 driver, memory usage is now constant regardless of the number of windows (and with a 1.0 driver, it's still ~50% more efficient than Vista). Another example, Win7 is much nicer to SSD storage. But you should look at the list of new features [] yourself.

Sadly a lot of XP machines will need RAM upgrades if not video and hard drive upgrades to run Windows 7 as I heard even 1G of RAM is not enough and that Windows 7 is a bit of a hard drive and resource hog like Vista is, because XP runs faster because it has less features and fewer services that start up upon bootup.

1GB is fine. I've used Win7 on netbooks with that little RAM and they were just as snappy (if not snappier) than when running XP. Of course I also like to upgrade netbooks to 2GB, and when you can do so for $20 why wouldn't you? You don't need a new video card, especially if you already have a DX9-capable card (DX9+ required for Aero, will be snappier with a 10.1 card but Aero will still work well). Win7 fits quite well into 16GB on netbooks with plenty of room to spare for your own content, and you can even hack it (though it's not recommended or supported) to get down into 8GB. Win7/Vista definitely have more startup services, but that's also a bit of a red herring as there are new things like the Aero Destop Window Manager and the new Audio server that show up as services now.

Most Windows XP installs don't make use of dual core or higher systems as one has to by the non uniprocessor version of XP to use more than one core or processor.

XP Pro supported 2 processors, so for most people that would be fine (assuming most people have single or dual-core CPUs, not quad-core). What's more important than that is 64-bit really shines in Win7 (it worked well in Vista as well, but it's even better in 7; for XP it was an after-thought).

Seriously, a lot of the FUD you have here about Win7 would be quickly dispelled if you just tried it. The RC is available. Give it a shot. You'll have a year before it timebombs on you, and you can upgrade to RTM with a hack (not officially supported, but with a workaround [] ).

Mohave (2, Insightful)

frovingslosh (582462) | about 5 years ago | (#29101197)

Remember the Mohave ads? Microsoft showed people a "new" OS and supposedly they liked it (although they could only really see it under very controlled conditions that would not show the faults, like driver incompatability). And then it was revealed that the OS was really Vista, which no one liked.

Now jump forward to the present. MS finally has a service pack that will fix many of the problems in Vista (although not all, and it still has very Vista characteristic performance benchmarks). Someone at M$ wants to release the service pack, but someone higher up who understands the M$ way of doing things better says "If we give people this service pack, even though it fixes many things, it will still have the stink of the Vista name on it. Lets do this: change the GUI around just enough that we can claim it's a new OS. Then rather than give people a new service pack for Vista, we can charge them for a whole new Operating System. Call it something other than Mohave and no one will get wise."

An so, with much hype, they release Windows 7. Everyone who bought Vista and was entitled to a workable OS gets screwed. M$ charges anyone who wants their Vista fixed for a supposedly different OS, even though Vista was so broken that even M$ executives called it a disaster. Profit.

Re:Mohave (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101343)

That's really clever how you use a dollar sign instead of an 'S' since Microsoft is so crass as to be interested in making money with software. You must be really smart - yell upstairs for Mom to make you another hot pocket. You earned it!

Re:Mohave (1)

Kjella (173770) | about 5 years ago | (#29101463)

Well, doh. At least they weren't screwed as bad as Windows ME (sept. 2000) vs Windows XP (oct. 2001). Or for that matter Windows 2000 for business customers, though 2000 wasn't a pretty good deal in itself. For those of you that don't see the pattern, they've taken a page from the theatrical/extended DVD market. Offer the theatrical first for those that really can't wait, then the exteneded version a little later as the "ultimate" version that you'd want going forward. If only HTML5 video can take over and flash video die a quick death, I'll be perfectly happy on another OS though...

It's ironic.. (1)

oljanx (1318801) | about 5 years ago | (#29101201)

.. that what started out as one of Microsoft's worst releases is now a favorite. The eight year old XP is somewhat solid these days, but it is time for an upgrade. Place Vista on the racks next to Microsoft Bob, and let us move on.

Stop the insanity! (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | about 5 years ago | (#29101217)

This constant upgrade crap has to end. Christ! Imagine having to change the compressor on your fridge every 5 five years or less, then finding out the new compressor won't fit in the old refrigerator. This whole thing is planned obsolescence at its very worse. "polishedturd" was the best tag so far. Who's gonna put up "lipstickonapig"?

Re:Stop the insanity! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101349)

Yeah I hate the constant 6 month upgrades of Ubuntu versions too!

I'm (sorta) one of them (4, Insightful)

CajunArson (465943) | about 5 years ago | (#29101241)

I've been a 99% Linux user since 2000, including 3 years of law school where I really only used Windows during exams because of Exam4 requirements. However, I'm starting a job at a (small) law firm and my laptop has Win 7 all loaded up and running. My prognosis so far: I can live with 7, especially because it runs Firefox and Cygwin runs Bash and basic UNIX utilities OK as well. I can even use VIM.

    Is it particularly fast? No, but it is not insanely slow. My laptop is recent but not super-high end, 2.2Ghz Core2 with 4GB of RAM is the good part, the Intel graphics are the bad part. Frankly, the Aero effects on Windows 7 work just as well as the compositing effects from KDE 4.3, meaning that they do work, but not blazingly fast like on my desktop with the Nvidia card. As for memory usage... despite claims to the contrary, Linux using a modern, fully featured desktop uses a little bit less RAM, but not significantly less. I'm not even close to filling up my 4GB even with office, firefox, and miscellaneous junk running, so no biggies there.

    I'm not a fan of Windows, I think that Windows 7 is somewhat boring for a "huge" release, but it does get the job done. My new job is concerned with me being able to write office documents and access Exchange + a small windows network, which Win7 makes stupidly simple. Do I miss virtual desktops? Sure. Am I annoyed that Windows still doesn't have very good window management and that I can't get rid of the annoying borders on my windows that the Bespin [] KDE theme lets me annihilate? You bet. At the same time, Windows does make certain configuration tasks easier (especially graphics & wireless even though I can and do use graphical utilities under Linux).

        I'm not saying that I couldn't do this just as well in Linux, but I am saying that I don't have the time to get my system tweaked to the rest of the office... at least immediately. This is a small law firm with technically proficient lawyers, and being the most junior associate I won't be shocked if I get some IT related tasks from time to time, but my day job is to be able to use nice boring office software, which Windows 7 allows for in a reasonably secure way.

        As for the XP part of this... I had an old XP license that I did purchase fair & square (for $10 from my University back in the day). It could have gotten the job done for a while, but Win7 really does have better security and like it or not it is the path forward. One major feature that Win7 has over XP is the find option in the start menu. Since MS keeps screwing with the Control Panel and everything else, I almost never bother to hunt through menus. Instead I just type in what I want to do in the search bar and it does a very good job of finding what I want. In fact, it's likely faster that me clicking menus even if I did know where stuff was. I'm not sure if XP even had this feature but Win7 makes it very easy to use by default and I've saved quite a bit of time with it... so there ya go, one actual reason to upgrade!

Re:I'm (sorta) one of them (1)

oljanx (1318801) | about 5 years ago | (#29101363)

I appreciate the comparison between Windows 7, XP and Linux. But let's be honest, its kind of like apples and oranges. You're comparing an operating system that most people can use out of the box with one that requires a lot of computer knowledge. At some point while installing or using linux you are going to have to use the command line, or edit at least one configuration file to make things work the way you want. Things like that are beyond the reach of your average user.

Re:I'm (sorta) one of them (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101383)

Ubuntu requires less effort to use than Windows.

SOL Vista user (4, Funny)

oldhack (1037484) | about 5 years ago | (#29101281)

Sucks for those who bought Vista - service pack used to be free before.

Re:SOL Vista user (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101365)

On the Mac side, service packs are now retailing for $30 (plus the cost of a new Intel computer to run Snow Leopard). Sure beats the $160 it used to be!

(I kid, I kid)

Re:SOL Vista user (1)

Kr4u53 (955252) | about 5 years ago | (#29101371)

service pack used to be free before.

Maybe that's why they gave it a number instead of a codename.

Trendy name inversely proportional to performance (1)

Chameleon Man (1304729) | about 5 years ago | (#29101301)

Anyone notice the trendier the name is for the new operating system, the more it sucks? Windows ME (Millennium Edition) and Vista are the two most trendy names followed in a semi-distant third with XP. That said, I guarantee Windows 7 is going to be the best Windows yet.

Water, water, everywhere, and not a drop to drink? (0, Offtopic)

shanen (462549) | about 5 years ago | (#29101309)

Microsoft is like seawater. Everywhere, but poisonous.

Actually, what I want is REAL choice = REAL freedom.

Microsoft wants to dictate Vista or DEATH! Wait, we didn't mean it. Now you can choose Windows 7 with only 35% of the awful and unneeded features of Vista!

Microsoft has become way to big to fail, which means too big to exist. Sooner or later they are going to fail. Who am I kidding? Microsoft is constantly failing. What I mean is sooner or later they are going to fail so big and so hard that the economic consequences will be astronomical. This is TOO big.

In addition, Microsoft has actually become a brake on progress. Why innovate when you're already getting the lion's share? New versions? That's a decision for marketing to decide! What year will be convenient for our next marketing campaign? That's the WRONG basis for improvements.

Suggestion: Cut Microsoft into 5 companies. Call them Microsoft A to E with a time limit before they need to pick new names. Give each of them a copy of the source code and 1/5 of the people and facilities and assets. Require them to compete. Windows can remain the standard OS, but they have to compete in conforming to the standard, and all changes and improvements to the standard must be discussed in public and agreed to, or the changes will be proprietary to that branch of the company.

Result? Real choice = freedom.

Side effect? As the code bases evolve over time, the single points of failure will be eliminated. Instead of 80% of the world's computers being at risk from one programming mistake, the risk will be greatly reduced.

Don't think of it as a penalty for success. It's an inducement to reproduce your company when you are successful enough. A new form of corporate evolution that increases our freedom while also creating more pressure for creative innovations and progress. (If you succeed again up to about 40% of the market, then your company should reproduce again, just to note the obvious.)

no alternatives?!?!?!??!?!?!? (1)

JeanBaptiste (537955) | about 5 years ago | (#29101469)

linux? osx? debian? solaris? gentoo? GLaDOS?

Never EVER EVER, well maybe (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101317)

Honetly vista is the biggest POS MS has made since windows ME(which i used for a long time and would rather use over vista)

The fact that using the new windows will pretty much double the requirements of any games one plays pretty much deems the new windows unuseable for me unless i go out and buy twice as much hardware power then i need just to run the crappy OS. Do i feel like doing that just so i can enjoy games i play on my XP rig, um no. MS cant even make a good light weight browser anymore let alone a fast OS. Its just plain silly to require 2gigs of ram just to run a game with 1gig min requirements and an OS. And dont get me started on DirectX10...

MS even admitted all windows 7 is vista repacked and slightly better, IE something that could have been done with a good service pack rather then trying to get people who wasted money on vista to pretty much buy the same crap a second time cept more functional...

yeah... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101319)

---just give it a chance! mahahahaha!

Its all about games (1)

Deneidez (1614765) | about 5 years ago | (#29101321)

My main OS is currently debian(trying different distros) and I use windows only for gaming nothing else(I don't even let that bugger leave my lan.). I guess I have to change to windows 7 when some game doesn't work on XP, but before that I am sticking with XP.

It is worth a look... (1)

ndykman (659315) | about 5 years ago | (#29101423)

Been running the RTM for about a week now. And I like it a lot. Sure, I wish Vista users would get this for cheap, but despite that, it really is nice. The new taskbar takes some getting used to, but it has some great features (Having shortcut controls in the preview has a ton of potential). It feels more responsive and polished, even on a netbook that Vista would choke on.

Much fewer hiccups compared to Vista (I can switch around between Visual Studio, Office, Eclipse, etc with no delays). There are lots of surprises. Try the math panel (best with a tablet, but mouse is okay), you can burn ISO images, it has basic color calibration and finally, the taskbar icons have been tamed. Aero Peek is nice and Aero overall takes less resources. It works fine even with Intel integrated graphics.

All in all, it really sets Windows back on good ground. It's the first version of Windows in quite some time that I really like running. Vista wasn't as bad as everybody said, and I'm sure Windows 7 won't be as good as some will hope, but for now, I am happy to run it.

And most abused women return to their abuser... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101429)

...time and time again.

Windows 7 is worthy for some (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 years ago | (#29101475)

If you're an XP user, Windows 7 appears to be a worthy upgrade. If you're a Vista user, I would be pissed about the upgrade price and wait to see the next version of Windows.

I am a Vista user.

Same shit, different decade (4, Insightful)

Peter Cooper (660482) | about 5 years ago | (#29101489)

We get the same story every time. People don't want to upgrade from [2 versions ago] to [next version] and [last version] sucked.. but it always happens.

A lot of people wanted to stick with 98, thought Me sucked, and didn't want to upgrade to XP until they absolutely needed to. Same shit, different decade.

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