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Linux Has Better Windows Compatibility Than Vista

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 6 years ago | from the wine-keeps-getting-better-with-age dept.

Windows 347

Several readers have written to tell us about one users rant in which he tells the story of being so frustrated with gaming on Windows Vista that he tried comparing gaming on Vista to that on Linux using Wine, with surprising results. "This post is clearly a bit biased. What shocked me though was how easy it was to find games that didn't run under Vista but did in Linux by using Wine or DOSBox. I'm not a huge gamer, so I don't have a huge collection of games to try out, but even still with just a few hours of frustrating work, I have been able to show that not only is Linux a reasonable alternative to Vista for gaming (XP is still king though), but also that Linux handles application failures more gracefully than Vista. Every game but Blackthorne crashed my Vista box, this didn't happen a single time under Linux."

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And yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271504)

I wish UT3 worked...

(some people have reported success, but not me... sigh.)

Re:And yet... (0, Troll)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271596)

What's the deal with people having vista compatibility problems? It's like malware, and any computer problems at all- everyone else gets it but if you do things right and don't break stuff, you'll never have problems. Ever thought "HOW STUPID DO YOU HAVE TO BE TO GET SPYWARE?" well--- same thing for vista problems. Just don't go into it expecting an 8 year old operating system - XP - and you'll be fine.

Re:And yet... (4, Informative)

baadger (764884) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271680)

Windows XP came out in August of 2001, it is only 6 and a half years old.

Re:And yet... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22272046)

Who in the Hell modded this redundant? If anything it should be Informative... but no, it sounds like it might be sticking up for Windows so it has to be modded down!

Re:And yet... (4, Informative)

Facegarden (967477) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271798)

I agree! I'm really surprised that this guy couldn't get these games to work, because every small issue i've had with software in vista (which is pretty rare, though more common than XP obviously), i just fiddle with compatibility mode or admin mode, and i can make it work. Sure, it's not always intuitive (if you normally click on a shortcut to open a program, you'll have to find the actual .exe to change compatibility settings... a task i know my mother could never do), but it's really not that big of a deal... Vista problems? WTF? -Taylor

Woah! (2, Funny)

Guppy06 (410832) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271516)

"Every game but Blackthorne"

You mean Blizzard made a game before World of Warcraft?

Second post (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271518)

This is the second post.

Try Third (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271564)

Fail.

...but, this is the First Post to the First Fail!

Everyone keeps saying... (5, Interesting)

Smordnys s'regrepsA (1160895) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271532)

-just to head this off-

I'm Hearing Year of the Linux Machine around here a lot again (again, or continuously... you decide).

Strangely, I've yet to hear a kind word from the normals in the real world.

Maybe this Linux thing isn't catching on quite as much as you think it is.

(not trying to troll, just an observation)

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271584)

...a very boring observation.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (5, Interesting)

Daniel Phillips (238627) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271590)

I'm Hearing Year of the Linux Machine around here a lot again (again, or continuously... you decide).
It has been year of the Linux desktop for 10 years now over here. Yes, it is true, I have never booted Windows box in that period and do not miss a thing except the annoyance. Registration key? Feh.

At the moment I am running on one of these [fit-pc.com] , Ubuntu, everything just worked when I turned it on including sound, Youtube, several different browsers including firefox 3. Runs KDE like a champ, very smooth. While I type, KDE 4 is installing. Not bad for an embedded box I brought in to be my always-on (5 watts!) server and just thought I'd try running KDE on it for fun, which turned out to work really well.

Oh right, time to install openoffice too, you never know when you might need that on a server :-)

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (0, Offtopic)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271608)

Try to beat the pitch drop experiment [wikipedia.org] compiling openoffice on a 5 watt draw.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (1)

Daniel Phillips (238627) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271760)

Try to beat the pitch drop experiment [wikipedia.org] compiling openoffice on a 5 watt draw.
Why should I? I already downloaded and installed it from the Ubuntu repository, it took about 5 minutes, works great. Actually, oo was already installed and I ended up just getting an updated version. Fine.

If I want to compile openoffice I will ssh into a faster machine... in another room where I don't hear the noise.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (1)

VoltageX (845249) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271908)

Sounds like that would make a great MythFrontend machine, if the video can keep up.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (1)

Brian Gordon (987471) | more than 6 years ago | (#22272068)

And how exactly was that off topic.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (4, Insightful)

jamesh (87723) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271660)

I'm Hearing Year of the Linux Machine around here a lot again (again, or continuously... you decide).

I'd be comfortable declaring this the millenium of Linux on the desktop, i'd even go so far as to say century. Possibly the next decade could be the decade of Linux on the desktop. But I think it's too gradual a shift for there to be a single year we could look back on and say "that was it. that's when it all happened". This is assuming it happens at all of course.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (5, Insightful)

DigitAl56K (805623) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271706)

I'm Hearing Year of the Linux Machine around here a lot again (again, or continuously... you decide).

Strangely, I've yet to hear a kind word from the normals in the real world.
Maybe you missed the ASUS Eee PC and the Everex gPC that Walmart has been selling?

Maybe this Linux thing isn't catching on quite as much as you think it is.
Maybe. But one thing that is catching on is "anything but Vista". I personally will hang on to XP for as long as I can, and then I will at least invest a reasonable amount of time looking at Linux or Mac before making a final call on Vista. I've used it plenty at work and it's been nothing but pain for me so far. I understand that there are also those that love Vista, or find it's no worse than anything else on offer. However, I think it's probably fair to say that dissatisfaction with Vista is probably greater than with any other OS in a long time, and that will boost Linux conversions.

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (2, Insightful)

harry666t (1062422) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271812)

Well, a few of my friends were recently talking something about switching to linux, or just moving away from Vista. Some did. Even my girlfriend said she won't mind using Linux.

The "problem" with adopting Linux (and/or Vista) is that XP is "good enough". Let's just wait and see if it'd start to turn out that it isn't.

Or, if you don't like sitting and waiting, go burn some Ubuntu CDs and give them away.

Hm. I'm slightly offtopic here too. So, my experience with running windows games on current Debian unstable is that they won't run. My machine is "slightly" old (Celeron 2.4, 256mb ram, GeForce 440mx), so I'm only playing^W trying to play older games like GTA2, JK3, Quake 3, but the problem is that there's no "easy" way to get the damn nVidia driver working. I need either the 7xxx series or 96xx series (which implement texture_from_pixmap, needed for all the compiz stuff), but both are a little broken in Debian and just won't install. But the games do run :) on the opensource nv driver the performance is... OMGWTF, but it's just a matter of drivers. Surprisingly, my (pirated, cracked and broken) version of GTA2 won't run on Windows >= 5.x (only non-NT 4.x), but under Wine - it works almost perfectly :)

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (2, Insightful)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271822)

Yes I know. I am a huge LX fanboi, but there are still niggles to sort out. I think there will be no "Year of the Linux Desktop", but that Linux acceptance and use will gradually increase until one day it is on a par with every other desktop OS out there.

I am purposely ignoring Linux niche markets such as servers et al, we are talking about the home user/gamer/office drone.

I read an interesting review a year ago that compared Vista/XP/Ubuntu as gaming platforms, and Vista and Ubuntu came out tops. The small advantages that Ubuntu (this was 6.10 or 7.04 methinks) had was because Vista was spanking new and drivers were not tops yet.

Vista was Quicker framerate wise than both the others, yet Ubuntu was the better overall platform, beating XP speed wise, and lagging behind Vista due to needing WINE to run the games.

That said about the "Year of Linux" I again hear about "Vista will be better once drivers mature.." over and over, it's been out a year, when will those drivers mature?

HERE IS THE ARTICLE! (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271832)

Bad form I know, I know. Dang /. for not having an "edit" option...

Here is the article I was referring to... and remember my OP was from memory so be kind...

http://www.viperlair.com/articles/editorials/vista/versus/ [viperlair.com]

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (5, Interesting)

ricegf (1059658) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271862)

Strangely, I've yet to hear a kind word from the normals in the real world.

Y'know, the odd thing is that I have.

For instance, we hosted several young British missionaries (these were religious missionaries, mind you, not Linux missionaries ;-) at our house last summer (I'm in North America), and they all had laptops (nat'chully). To my surprise, one of them was running Ubuntu. I asked him why he chose Ubuntu over Windows, and he replied with admirable British conciseness, "It doesn't crash so much."

I've run across several others in my church who were using Ubuntu when I met them (and that one Suse guy ;-). Yes, it's a big church, but it's a church, not an engineering conference or engineering club. Nor is it a high-tech firm such as where I work, where Linux is a rather commonplace choice, even for the spouses.

I'm no longer surprised to meet "normals" using Linux. I'm more surprised nowadays to find someone like you who hasn't. :-)

Re:Everyone keeps saying... (1)

Tony Hoyle (11698) | more than 6 years ago | (#22272042)

Most churches I've seen have macbooks rather than anything else - they're popular because they do presentations and 'arty stuff' well.

The missionaries and charitable arms have whatever is donated to them.. things like Windows 95 are not uncommon.
Vista is probably 10 years in the future for these kind of organisations.

Stupid Topic (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271536)

The title should be "Linux better windows compatibility then Vista"

Re:Stupid Topic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271736)

than

WoW (2, Interesting)

imasu (1008081) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271542)

Years ago, just after WoW's beta, I used to run it using cedega. There were still crashing bugs that would hose my friends machines and require rebooting back then; I would just restart cedega when one happened to me. In fact, I don't remember if I *ever* played WoW using a real Windows install. I quit fairly soon after beta though, less than a year.

WoW on Linux (5, Interesting)

krischik (781389) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271678)

I too play WoW on Linux - Without cedega that is. There is an endless discussion on the internal cedage forums about it - but the bottom line is: Sometimes it's better to use an up-to-date Wine with OpenGL instead.

The only thing which does not work is the Microphone - but it won't work the Linux version of Skype either so the trouble is elsewhere.

See my installation aid: http://martin.krischik.com/index.php/Main/WoWOnLinux [krischik.com]

Martin

Cant even start wine (1)

Zo0ok (209803) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271554)

I cant even start Wine... out of the box Kubuntu installation, all updates applied... system completely freezes... power button needed. So, for running the only game I care about (Ports Of Call), Vista is my platform... no problems there. Have a VIA C3 Nehemia - probably there is a Wine problem with it.

Not a wine problem -- check your graphics drivers (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271578)

Wine by itself can't lock the system.
The usual cause of this is proprietary graphics drivers getting out of sync with the kernel.
If you're using nvidia drivers, try reinstalling them.

Re:Not a wine problem -- check your graphics drive (2, Informative)

baadger (764884) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271704)

Bullshit.

The NVIDIA proprietary graphics driver is rarely the cause of X or kernel hangs and crashes. In 2 years of using NVIDIA drivers on bleeding edge vanilla mainline kernels i've only had to wait for a new release *once* and *never* had a kernel panic that resulted from it.

Re:Not a wine problem -- check your graphics drive (1)

Zo0ok (209803) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271774)

VIA drivers... was a hell to make 1366x768 work (on my LCD TV)... probably worth investigating if I can do something about X/drivers. Thanx

Re:Cant even start wine (4, Interesting)

Seven001 (750590) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271614)

On my computer, WoW runs better under Wine in Linux than on Windows XP. Faster load times and such. Not saying that's the case for everyone, but I have heard quite a few others say the same.

Re:Cant even start wine (1)

baadger (764884) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271714)

One of the things I love about Wine is, using the virtual desktop setting, you can run many DirectX games in a window, which you simply can't do on Windows.

Re:Cant even start wine (2, Interesting)

paganizer (566360) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271806)

Well, actually. you can.
Microsoft bought VirtualPC from Connectix(?) a few years back; they now give it away. So just to make sure I wasn't hallucinating, I just popped up a DOS 6.22 window with Masters of Magic, a Win98SE window with Starcraft, and for giggles a Debian window running Americas Army. All run fine, simultaneously.
Of course, this is on Win2k. and Americas Army didn't have a great frame rate. but thats probably because the machine only has 1gb of ram and a Geforce4 MX 4000 card.
It also works on XP. I've had my XP-MCE Core Duo / Nvidia 7300 Laptop running 6 simultaneous "Alien Armageddon" games.
Vista....wouldn't even think about trying it.

Re:Cant even start wine (1)

argiedot (1035754) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271794)

Wine plays bad with Via stuff. It could lock up my old Pentium IV box with a Via on-board graphics chipset. The Unichrome chipset is hell for wine, just trust me and leave it alone, via's graphics drivers are awful (the ones they've released on the site are useless and even harmful). One thing I noticed is that wine does something funny with the graphics, it doesn't load like just any other program, and when I had bad OpenGL rendering it would work bad, and when I had good rendering it worked better. Just my experience though, things may be different elsewhere.

hardly a good test (2, Informative)

leomekenkamp (566309) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271556)

So this guy takes a whopping 5 games (out of thousands, and most quite obscure) and concludes that system BLA is better than system XYZ. Article mod: -1, Flamebait.

Re:hardly a good test (1, Troll)

syousef (465911) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271712)

How about we mod you -1:Flamebait instead? At least the author admits the article is "a bit biased".

On the other hand you're saying it ISN'T news for nerds that games built to run on a prior version of Windows don't work in new one but do work on a totally different operating system?

Let me guess. You don't think it's news that newer versions of Office won't open old word documents but Open Office will.

Don't get me wrong, the choice of games (besides perhaps Civ 4) is questionable, but make no mistake YOU are the one trolling. The author of the blog article has a point.

Re:hardly a good test (4, Insightful)

leomekenkamp (566309) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271780)

How about we mod you -1:Flamebait instead? At least the author admits the article is "a bit biased".

Let us take a look at a definition of flamebait (wikipedia): Flamebait is a message posted to a public Internet discussion group, such as a forum, newsgroup or mailing list, with the intent of provoking an angry response (a "flame") or argument over a topic the troll often has no real interest in.

As a professional software developer I have a professional interest in the performance of OS-es, even when it comes to gaming. My message was in no way intended to provoke emotional response; I even replaced the names of the OS-es with placeholders to indicate my argument has nothing to do with the OS-es themselves, but with the methodology followed in the article. Please elaborate why my posting should be modded 'flamebait', for I fail to see a valid reason.

On the other hand you're saying it ISN'T news for nerds that games built to run on a prior version of Windows don't work in new one but do work on a totally different operating system?

No, I have said no such thing whatsoever. If apps written for A run better on B, it is indeed news. The article however fails miserably in showing evidence for such a claim.

Let me guess. You don't think it's news that newer versions of Office won't open old word documents but Open Office will.

My vision on another subject that is remotely related to the one we are discussing is irrelevant. Please stick to the issue you are debating.

Don't get me wrong, the choice of games (besides perhaps Civ 4) is questionable,

Which was the point I was making, together with the fact that it is bad practice to (non-randomly) pick 5 out of a population of thousands and make assumptions based solely on those 5.

but make no mistake YOU are the one trolling.

Lets take a look at a definition of a troll (wikipedia): An Internet troll, or simply troll in Internet slang, is someone who posts controversial messages in an online community, such as an online discussion forum, with the intention of baiting other users into an emotional response.

I fail to see how my post is controversial; I also fail to see any intention of provoking an emotional response. You simply calling my post 'trolling' has no relevance.

The author of the blog article has a point.

The only point the author can make is that for his obscure and very small subset of all possible games, they run better on wine than on vista. My point is that that says absolutely nothing about vista in general.

Re:hardly a good test (-1, Troll)

syousef (465911) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271856)

Please elaborate why my posting should be modded 'flamebait', for I fail to see a valid reason.

YOU are the one that called for the article to be modded flamebait in the first place. Now you're complaining about someone else doing the same to you. Pot. Kettle. Black.

The article however fails miserably in showing evidence for such a claim.

So the summary was bad. Why does that make the whole thing flamebait?

I fail to see how my post is controversial; I also fail to see any intention of provoking an emotional response.

Your failures aren't my problem. If you can't see why asking to mod/censor an article that might be of interest to others might provoke an emotional response, I don't see how I can help you. If new versions of windows are less compatible with even some software than Linux emulating an old version that is of interest to me, and I don't appreciate people like yourself trying to shout down the article.

Re:hardly a good test (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271882)

"Its so bad that out of spite I have decided to make a list of games that work better in Linux under Wine than in Vista."

What part don't you understand? Granted, the title might be flamebait if it weren't for the rest of the article. Read: The writer of the article explains several times that he's exaggerating because Vista is really atrociously bad at playing old games.

You however are straight out lying to provoke a response. How is that NOT flamebait?

Re:hardly a good test (1)

RonnyJ (651856) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271796)

Let me guess. You don't think it's news that newer versions of Office won't open old word documents but Open Office will.

Well, I would hope that any news about Office compatibility would use a rather bigger sample size and more research than this particular 'study' on games compatibility did.

Re:hardly a good test (2, Insightful)

eebra82 (907996) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271840)

Don't get me wrong, the choice of games (besides perhaps Civ 4) is questionable, but make no mistake YOU are the one trolling.
No he wasn't. If anything, he was semi-trolling. The author is way off if he thinks that he can draw a conclusion like "Linux has better Windows compatibility than Vista" with a tiny test like this.

Does he have a point? Yes.
Is the article interesting? Yes.
Is it biased? Yes.

Re:hardly a good test (4, Insightful)

zenkonami (971656) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271948)

I dunno...I smelled a firefight the minute I read Scuttlemonkey's lead line.

Several readers have written to tell us about one users rant...
Really? Several readers? Took time out of their day to write you to tell you about this one readers rant? OK, I'll check out the article. This must be good. What? Only four games tested, and by someone who is a self-professed non-gamer? Let's see what he had to say...

Game 1: Basically didn't work. Oh sure, he got Soldat running in WINE eventually, after tweaking, and gives the impression that it was unplayable. Vista 0 - Linux 0.

Game 2: Darwinia, patched to the latest version (a reasonable suggestion for any game, really, in this day and age) ran with a horrible frame rate in Vista, but "runs fine under Wine (even at a tolerable speed)" Not at "a normal" or "expected" framerate, but at "a tolerable speed." I have no idea what that means. We'll give him the benefit of the doubt on this one, but someone might want to share the fact that Darwinia is available in a native Linux version. Vista 0 - Linux 1.

Game 3: DOSBox under Vista hangs, and he says it's basically a DOSBox problem. Okay, fine...so he tries it in Linux and it also fails, though in a different way. In Vista he tries to shut off the sound in the config, and nothing, but in Linux he changes the config from SBPro to SB. I'd like to know, did he try that in Vista? (First rule of troubleshooting...assume nothing.) I don't think I can give Linux a point on this because there's just not enough information. Vista 0 - Linux 1.

Game 4: Civ 4. The author of the article says he's a big Civ fan, and frankly so am I. Great game series. He gets a message that indicates known compatibility issues, so tries to run it anyway (why not...might as well see what happens.) It hangs on him. Now, anecdotes are anecdotes, but my buddy and I have been playing the Civ games together for sometime, and he recently (within the last year) put Vista on his machine. Afterward we both purchased Civ 4 (I'm running it on XP.) He installed it, loaded it, and (drum roll)...it worked. No window claiming "known compatibility issues", it didn't hang his machine. It's not even a state of the art machine. We've been playing for several months now, and neither of us has had any issues with Windows "hanging", which suggests to me that there is more going on here than just a windows issue (even though windows could be involved.) He does say that after patching the game (there it is again), well, I'm not sure what he says.

Update: With the 1.61 patch, Civ4 no longer freezes, but it like in WineX, it does not recognize the cd labled "Play / Disc 2 when in the drive. An improvement, but still not good enough.
I think he said it didn't work. Oh, and he could install in under Cedega and it wouldn't run. It wouldn't even install for him with Wine, "but at least it doesn't hang my machine."

Using highly refined comparitive techniques similar to those in the "rant", and given that my friend's experience running Civ under Vista has been completely smooth, I'm gonna give Vista a point on this one. Vista 1 - Linux 1.

Margin of error: 1000 games, either way. I don't care if one "handles application failures more gracefully than" the other. If I'm the average user who wants to game as is implied in the article, I will be as confused by nothing happening as I would be by the computer hanging and restarting. Looks like a tie to me.

Look, folks, I have no love for Vista (tried it, tested it, didn't like it), but this was about as scientific a test of Vista's compatibility as reading tea leaves.

And just to add 2 cents, I don't think any of those games were sold on the assumption that they would run in Vista, just because it's supposed to be backwards compatible.

I'm gonna go with flamebait on this one.

Re:hardly a good test (1, Redundant)

martyros (588782) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271752)

Even worse:
  • Most of the games he's testing DON'T WORK ON EITHER SYSTEM . It's just that under Vista, a lot of them crash.
  • One that doesn't crash -- Civ 4 -- Microsoft warns that it won't work, then doesnt' work; while Wine just doesn't work. How is that better?
  • The first one he tested was a game that he doesn't even play. WTH? "There's a game that I've heard of that I don't play but it doesn't work on Vista so I'm angry."
  • The second game is some ancient DOS game. It won't play because DOSBox doesn't work on Vista. Maybe you should... wait until they have a version of DOSBox for Vista?
Honestly, I was expecting a list of games people commonly play these days, not a bunch of randomness. The fact that Vista crashed for him is, of course, bad; but the fact that Wine doesn't play the games but just crashes instead hardly makes Linux a better gaming platform.

Re:hardly a good test (1)

AndGodSed (968378) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271884)

Yeah, and these are some of the most obscure games possible. Barring CIV of course... there are better comparisons out on teh web...

Re:hardly a good test (3, Interesting)

mrwolf007 (1116997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271772)

Actually the test was pretty good.
The test was designed to test Vista`s compatibility, so the choice of games wasnt bad.
It included an old DOS-title, several Indie games (not optimized for Vista, but made for XP) and pretty recent well known game (CIV 4).
Im also pretty sure that DOS-compatibility is at least equal on linux as compared to Vista, based on my own experience.
I dont know about the coding quality of the indie games but i guess point is, Vista is not compatible to XP. Ok who would have guessed that?
And to find out that even a recent game such as CIV4 doesnt work without the latest patches and fiddling around, well talk about compatibility.

Re:hardly a good test (1)

leomekenkamp (566309) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271800)

On the contrary, the choice is very bad. It would not surprise me if someone could come up with a set of 5 games that run flawlessly on vista, but fail under wine, which would also say nothing whatsoever about the _general_ compatibility of either platform.

If I take a look at 5 trees in my city and conclude they are sick, I cannot conclude that all trees are sick. If I test 10 keyboards and conclude they all suck, I cannot make the claim that all keyboards suck.

Re:hardly a good test (1)

mrwolf007 (1116997) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271860)

Hold it.
Im sure you can find 5 games that run flawlessly under Vista. Ok, if you consider degraded performance flawless.
Point however is, Vista does not run everything XP does. Those two plattforms are not 100% compatible. Afaik this was a deliberate design decision from MS. Versions up to XP automaticly emulate known bugs from prior versions.
Vista doesnt do that anymore.
If you dont mind that Vista doesnt run buggy(1) software, thats fine.

(1) buggy as in: Works as intended, but not according to official specs.

Re:hardly a good test (1)

leomekenkamp (566309) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271936)

I'll hold :-)

It is virtually impossible to make 2 different platforms 100% compatible. I was simply commenting that the methodology used is flawed. I am prepared to accept any claim, as long as the methodology used is correct.

If you take the 20 best-selling games of the last 2 or 3 years and run them on xp, vista and wine (preferably multiple distros), then you can make decent claims about compatibility and performance as the general public is probably faced with. Taking 5 games from personal taste says nothing whatsoever.

I am not saying you are incorrect on vista performance, buggyness or anything else; I am simply stating that such claims cannot be made looking at the 'evidence' given in the article.

Re:hardly a good test (1)

zenkonami (971656) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271992)

Frankly, there's not enough information in the article to know whether it was a good test of Vista's compatibility or not.

Look, let's put three identical machines side by side. We'll install Vista on one, XP on two, and Linux on three. Now let's try installing those games on all three machines and see what happens.

Then we have some kind of benchmark to work off of. Otherwise, we have no idea what different circumstances, variables and other criteria are affecting this "test."

I think it's called "science." Geeks are supposed to be into it.

For every anecdote, it seems someone else has a different anecdote. Maybe attempting to do things methodically and showing the work is just too much work for a little bit of truth.

Re:hardly a good test (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271834)

This is what happens when someone who doesn't really like or know how to use windows tries to compare it to Linux and comes to the rather laughable conclusions Linux is better than Vista.

Yea, on you're 1.6 mhz system with 512 ram Linux will certainly shine, however... gaming benchmarks exist just so that random opinions don't turn into facts.

The reality is that IF you have a dual core system Vista will destroy Linux or XP in the majority of gaming benchmarks. Just do a google search and READ up before conducting the least scientific test you can come up with.

It's true wine has come a long way, but I think the fact that it can plan King's Quest better than Vista, but still doesn't play any even remote majority of newer games isn't a good thing.

Getting rid of legacy support isn't a bad thing people. If you REALLY need your DOS gaming that bad maybe Vista isn't the OS for you. On the other hand if you want to play Windows games at full speed in 90% or more of cases Linux performance game performance is not only inferior to Vista, but also to XP and EVEN 98. Clearly thats not Linux's fault, it's game and driver optimization and of course the endless challenge that is DX comparability.

However, to not ENTIRELY mislead the readers. Check out the benchmarks, anandtech.com, tomshardware.com maybe ARS Tech. Should all have Vista vs XP and maybe even VS Linux benchmarks done with a valid test method.

You'll notice on modern hardware Vista tends to stomp XP gaming benchmarks since it's seemingly more efficient with the dual core systems. OF course, Vista needs much more ram than XP but it is unarguable more secure than XP.

And as per the claim that KDE or GNOME doesn't crash and Vista does. YEA RIGHT. The reality there is that Linux window managers aren't 100% stable and I'd go as far to say they aren't any more stable than Vista and in fact less stable that XP. PLUS windows explorer more gracefully handles an explorer crash. I'd go as far to say X Windows is a pile of legacy crap that likely no one knows how to fix.

Both OS's GUI's crash and not specifically because of gaming. If your Vista crashes every game load, it's not the OS, it's YOU or your hardware because proven testers aren't experiencing 'every game crashing' or whatever.

Vista really is getting a much worse reputation than it deserves. If you have a fast system with lots of ram and your not a sidebar addict Vista runs pretty good and is significantly more malware resistant and simply more secure out of the box. In many games benchmarks Vista is the fastest OS around. It also has one of the fastest load and recovery from standy and hibernation times along with the and easier to use GUI than any Linux distro. It's complex to the normal herd of morons that use XP because any change is complicated to an idiot, but Vista is still easily more refined than Linux and it's interface is far more standardized and even with it's flaw it's still has way more hardware and software compatibility.

As Linus stands gaming is a joke and a lot of USB devices and wireless cards don't work without tweaking. It's getting there, but having fanboys constantly exaggerate how far along Linux is HURTING Linux reputation. Linux is simply NOT ready to replace XP for the average user and there is no more telling sign than the .6% market share. Even Mac is clearly a superior gaming platform and more or less superior all around as the average joe's OS.

Linux playing Win32 emulation really has never worked out so well. It's always going to be a game of catch-up until Linux gets more native support or the world truly goes cross platform. It's cool though a handful of games do work well enough these days to give you .6% guys some options, but in the end your just not being practical using Linux to game.

Either you like gaming or you like Linux. There is no point in limiting your gaming choices to what plays on Linux just to say you are a Linux gamer. Only fanboy's would let their OS dictate the applications they use and then come here and try to rationalize why their fanboyism is valid.

Just read the well publishes gaming benchmarks Vista vs XP vs Linux. Vista and XP win, over and over and over and Vista is suprisingly fast even with all that bloat, which likely means some of the kernel improvements in Vista are quite good, but mostly ofset by all the added junk like sidebar and gadgets or whatever they call them. For most people this equates to low physical memory
and less responsive multi-tasking performance. On the other hand since Vista is much more secure out of the box it's far less prone to becoming a botnet client which is arguable the worst part of MS's platform, malware infestations.

I think once MS replaces the aged NTFS file system as they had planned on Vista we'll see the Vista kernel grow into something pretty useful.

What we won't see is Linux becoming fully DX compatible nor will we see a mass migration to openGL. So gaming will remain mostly locked to the win32 platform and developments like Wine for gaming are really a massive waste of time. As the API becomes more and more complex the goal of keeping up with DX development only gets harder while the amount of game titles people want to play on Linux exponentially expands.

Mac's approach is far smarter in how they focuses on perfecting KEY applications and allowed game developers to come to them. Considering Linux is free, you'd think it would have a higher user base vs the worlds most proprietary OS, Mac. Linux development however is overall slow and inconsistent with forming a complete platform since there is NO central vision as to where the OS will go or more importantly how it will get there. That lack of vision is what is holding Linux back. The slowness to adopt one click installers for example just represents the disconnect between what the average desktop user needs and what the average Linux user wants.

Re:hardly a good test (1)

leomekenkamp (566309) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271898)

While I agree on most points (or are not informed enough on some points to comment), I cannot resist but react to two of your points.

Vista really is getting a much worse reputation than it deserves. If you have a fast system with lots of ram and your not a sidebar addict Vista runs pretty good (...)

That bad reputation probably comes from people who run vista on anything else but the latest and greatest. Besides, I would expect an operating system (that has been 5 years in the making) to run more than 'pretty good' on a fast computer with lots of ram.

I think once MS replaces the aged NTFS file system as they had planned on Vista we'll see the Vista kernel grow into something pretty useful.

The new 'filesystem' (some 10+ years in the making now) was in the recent years reported on as a layer on top of ntfs (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WinFS#Architecture [wikipedia.org] ).

Re:hardly a good test (1)

ultracool (883965) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271978)

I haven't had a lot of experience with Vista, but I've been playing games in Linux for a while now because of seemingly poor support for my graphics card (GeForce Go 7300) in Windows XP. I can't play a game more than 20 minutes before it crashes badly (blue screen and all). On the same machine in Linux, I can play UT2004, Doom 3, and Quake natively. Civ 4 runs beautifully under wine with no performance hit that I've noticed. World in Conflict plays in wine too, and although there is definitely a performance hit there, it beats restarting my computer constantly. Most older games will run fine in wine, such as Diablo 2. And when a game crashes in Linux, I just get sent back to the desktop instantly with no fuss.

My only experience with Vista was to install Worms World Party. While it would install, the game just refused to run. I tried running it in XP mode and various other configurations, but no luck. I think it's safe to say that gaming on Vista is hit and miss with anything not explicitly designed to run on it. Just like gaming in Linux...

vista gaming (5, Informative)

TheSpengo (1148351) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271586)

In my experience, gaming in Vista caused noticeable performance hits in every game I tried. I lost a 5-ish fps in oblivion, and up to 40 or more in source engine games. I haven't tried in awhile so I don't know if it's gotten any better but that was one of the main reasons for me switching back to XP. I have not tried any of the latest games such as cod4 or crysis in vista. I also did not try the most recent source engine games in orange box which allegedly use DX10 to help speed up some of the stuff vista slowed down. As for gaming in linux, that's something I don't do much because I prefer to get the max performance I can and wine/cedega just don't quite cut it. I do, however, use linux for just about everything else. :)

Re:vista gaming (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271744)

In my experience, gaming in Vista caused noticeable performance hits in every game I tried. I lost a 5-ish fps in oblivion, and up to 40 or more in source engine games.
Vista certainly has higher hardware requirements than XP, but it's not a big deal in practice for those of us with modern hardware. Source engine games run so fast that I might well be losing 40 FPS, but I'm damned if I can tell the difference. Even Crysis runs just fine (not on maximum detail, mind, but it still looks awesome), and this is on a relatively slow Core 2 Duo.

Mind you, like you I do everything else in Linux. Unless you're an office drone whose needs are satisfied with Word, Excel, and Outlook, Windows just sucks for getting things done.

Four games (4, Informative)

RonnyJ (651856) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271592)

Is a test that includes only 4 non-working games really a good indication of compatibility, and worthy of coverage on Slashdot? I certainly haven't had a problem with gaming on Vista, although I'm aware there's a few issues here and there.

I also did a search for one of the games listed - Darwinia - first two results on Google gave me a link to an update for Vista on the official site/forum. If he's using that (which he hasn't said either way) and still having lockups, I'd have thought there's some other issue there.

Re:Four games (-1, Troll)

timmarhy (659436) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271616)

yep, this has to be one of the most retarded posts on /. for some time.

does anyone really believe this moron that vista, which actually runs directx, is going to be worse then linux with it's crappy emulation?

Re:Four games (3, Insightful)

Soft Cosmic Rusk (1211950) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271722)

Wine Is Not an Emulator

Vista works really well with games (4, Insightful)

Toreo asesino (951231) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271606)

Let's see, on my Vista machine now I have the following games, unmodified that still work perfectly well in Vista, even if one or two need running in compatibility Win XP mode. List includes:

Quake 1-3, Dungeon Keeper 1 & 2, Unreal (classic), C&C95, Red Alert.

I mean, if Vista can run a DirectX 4 game, 6 major DirectX versions later, that can't be bad. All power to wine if it can do it too, but to suggest Vista is awful with games is pushing it.

Re:Vista works really well with games (1)

Drinking Bleach (975757) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271716)

official Quake 3 on Vista doesn't display the videos, and a few other minor problems (game is still playable though). I switched brother, whom uses Vista, to using ioquake3 which takes care of these problems and some more enhancements; only downside is that there's no PunkBuster, but heh

Quake 3? (1)

turgid (580780) | more than 6 years ago | (#22272090)

There's a native Linux binary for that :-) /me ducks.

Come on, really? (5, Insightful)

Handlarn (911194) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271620)

If you review four games, where all except one is fairly unknown, and you get Vista to crash three of these games, you should probably do one of the following: A) Try with games that aren't filled with bugs (may I suggest some more mainstream titles that have regular patches coming out), or B) Check your hardware for broken component.

And you should probably try a few more games than that to be able to draw any conclusions at all.

Icewind Dale 2 (2, Interesting)

incripshin (580256) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271622)

I couldn't play Icewind Dale II in Windows XP. There are issues with many laptop input drivers screwing with the keyboard in that game. I couldn't resolve the problem, so I switched to linux, copied the Icewind Dale II directory, which was patched and had a no-CD crack, and it runs swimmingly. The only issue is that my linux cursor still shows on top of the game, but I rarely notice it.

I also remember trying to play Escape From Monkey Island(tm) in Windows XP, but there was this one part of the game that you couldn't get past (rowing up to Pegnose Pete's swamp shack). When playing The Curse of Monkey Island(tm), the cut-scenes would blaze past in seconds. I had to install Windows 98 to play the games. Compatibility mode didn't cut it. Other games that won't work in XP are Myst and Riven.

Laptop drivers are a bitch in Windows, and so I blame laptop manufacturers like Sony and Dell for making quirky hardware that need special drivers. I blame Microsoft for allowing such stupid driver issues to exist. Finally, I blame the developers for not using the APIs that they're supposed to be using, like DirectX, OpenGL, or SDL.

Re:Icewind Dale 2 (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271766)

I couldn't play Icewind Dale II in Windows XP. There are issues with many laptop input drivers screwing with the keyboard in that game. I couldn't resolve the problem, so I switched to linux, copied the Icewind Dale II directory, which was patched and had a no-CD crack, and it runs swimmingly. The only issue is that my linux cursor still shows on top of the game, but I rarely notice it.

I never got into the Windy Dale games, but the Baldur's Gate games work just fine on my Vista-running laptop (and in XP before I installed Vista). Windy Dale II still uses the Infinity Engine just like Baldur's Gate (though obviously updated), so I'm surprised it doesn't work for you.

I also remember trying to play Escape From Monkey Island(tm) in Windows XP, but there was this one part of the game that you couldn't get past (rowing up to Pegnose Pete's swamp shack). When playing The Curse of Monkey Island(tm), the cut-scenes would blaze past in seconds. I had to install Windows 98 to play the games. Compatibility mode didn't cut it. Other games that won't work in XP are Myst and Riven.

I had no problem with Escape From Monkey Island under XP (haven't gone back to play it under Vista), no compatibility switches required. For older Monkey Islands, ScummVM [scummvm.org] is the way to go. Grim Fandango (EFMI updated the Lua engine from GF) worked great in XP as well, though I did suffer an occasional crash.

Like you, I'm using a laptop (mine from Dell), and aside from having to hack [driverheaven.net] official video drivers in order to get the latest updates I've had no problems with drivers.

Re:Icewind Dale 2 (1)

argiedot (1035754) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271816)

I had a funny experience. Unreal Tournament wouldn't run in Windows 98 unless it was in UT's "Safe Mode" and that didn't have sounds and stuff. Under Red Hat 8, the linux port ran beautifully on the same computer. I had good experiences with wine too, then, but you had to do lots of fiddling. However, to be frank, I haven't been able to play too many windows games with wine (Warcraft III on a Unichrome chipset, you can give up with wine, but it runs fine in Windows) but I think that's more a driver issue. I suspect Linux drivers are rarely as good as Windows drivers (even Intel's).

A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like it (5, Insightful)

wfWebber (715881) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271630)

Just tried to install the first game on his list (Soldat) on my laptop running Vista 64 bit.
First run; no go. Soldat stops responding.

Start explorer, go to soldat directory, open soldat.exe properties. Set compatibility to Windows XP/SP2, disable Aero for this program, run as admin.

Second run; works like a charm. One more popup asking whether Soldat may access the network.

I'm not even going to bother and try the other ones. This guy should have done his homework.

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271708)

Start explorer, go to soldat directory, open soldat.exe properties. Set compatibility to Windows XP/SP2, disable Aero for this program, run as admin.

You may have gone a bit overboard here. You should try just right-clicking and running as admin first before you change compatibility settings. That works for me on my 32-bit Vista installation, but perhaps you need the compatibility switches for x64. Still, I'd always try "run as admin" as the first troubleshooting step before going for appcompat switches.

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (2, Insightful)

Darkon (206829) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271786)

I'd always try "run as admin" as the first troubleshooting step
Which rather defeats the point of using an unprivileged user account...

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271808)

Which rather defeats the point of using an unprivileged user account...

Absolutely, which is why you don't go there unless you start having problems. Honestly, in the year I've been running Vista Soldat is the first game where I've had to run as admin to get it to play (and I only did that to debunk the article, I have no real interest in the game itself) and probably only the second or third time that I've had to use "run as admin" on any application at all (VS2k5 claims that it wants you to run as admin, but it will work perfectly well even if you don't).

Unfortunately, this is the type of behavior you often see from small/independent/FOSS developers who are not necessarily clear on the concept of Windows development best practices (Soldat is a perfect example, as it doesn't even default to the "standard" installation location of %programfiles%). What's annoying is that Soldat has had a year to fix the issue and still hasn't even though they had three releases since Vista shipped (1.4, 1.4.1, 1.4.2). I guess the current work-around is "good enough", but this isn't really something you can blame on Microsoft and Vista -- Soldat would've failed just as spectacularly if you had tried to play it in XP with a low-privilege account. The only difference is that Vista makes it easy to use a low-privilege account day-to-day and XP didn't.

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (1)

Darkon (206829) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271830)

I'm just a bit too paranoid to right away break out the "run as admin" option as a first troubleshooting step. Process Monitor [microsoft.com] is a fantastic little tool for figuring out what an uncooperative app is trying and failing to access. Sometimes it's just a case of loosening permissions on one particular directory or reg key, and I like to try that before giving anything blanket admin privileges.

And if he's going to test some games (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271814)

Here's some ones I'd love to see. All of them work on 64-bit Vista, no tweaks needed:

World of Warcraft
Elder Scrolls 4: Oblivion
Command and Conquer 3
Hitman: Blood Money
Gears of War
Civilization 4: Beyond the Storm

Those are 6 I've got installed on my system right now. They are fairly modern titles, and all quite a bit of fun. All of them run in Vista 64-bit without issue. I haven't had to even turn on the compatibility mode, they all run as is. How's that go under Wine? Can you run all those (and I don't mean start, I mean play without problems)? If not, then perhaps Linux compatibility ISN'T as good as Vista.

Talk about a retarded article. It really becomes clear near the end that he's just looking for problems. The error with Civ 4 isn't a "You can't use this," it is just what it says: That version has known issues (related to Safedisc I believe). So what is the answer? Well had he asked it for a solution, it'd probably tell him to get the patch from Firaxis. Do that, and Civ 4 runs great.

Also the guy apparently is either a total moron, or just lazy. He claims he can't get Blackthorne to work in DOSBox. Ummm, well, don't know what to tell him, it works fine in my copy. Sound works, graphics work, etc. My guess is he knows nothing about DOSBox and doesn't know that the "auto" cycles don't work in some cases. This is one of them, you have to increase it to get the game going (you can set it to auto once in the game). Also not at all sure how DOSBox is supposed to test anything. One of the features of DOSBox is that it does full emulation and is highly portable. So you can run it on any platform it has been ported on and it'll work. Vista's issue would be to run DOSBox (which it does just fine). It is then DOSBox's issue to run a given game.

I mean really, are people this desperate for Vista to fail that this is the kind of crap they publish? A test of 4 games, by a guy who doesn't know what he's doing, one of which is a DOS game (and thus not a test of Vista, but of DOSBox). Wow, ya, that is real compelling there. I wonder if people think that FUD like this really is going to stop Vista adoption.

Re:And if he's going to test some games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22272114)

I haven't had any trouble with WOW under Cedega. Haven't tried the others. Not a gamer.

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271870)

Guess what I do to run PowerPC applications on my Intel iMac?

Double click.

Why on earth do you put up with this shit? (Games?)

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (3, Insightful)

Reemi (142518) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271886)

Agree, but not completely.

The argument that Linux is too complex has been used for years. It still is, but once my mother needs to right-click on an executable and wade through options I'd say "Game Over" for Windows as well. This is not what I call backwards-compatibility as it should be.

To be fair, running a game using Wine is probably more complicated for most.

Side note, I had problems running Baldurs Gate on my new AMD 64bit dual core with WinXP 32bit. Graphics were wrong and sound mis-aligned. Whatever I tried, I could not improve it. Then I decided to run it using Wine (never used wine before) in OpenSuSe 10.3, 64bit and guess what: works like a charm.

Reemi.

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (1)

doktorjayd (469473) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271910)

... run as admin. ...
Second run; works like a charm. One more popup asking whether Soldat may access the network.
why should you have to run as admin? and should you really be running an app as admin which accesses the network?

sounds like a compelling argument against to me.

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (1)

IceFreak2000 (564869) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271952)

why should you have to run as admin? and should you really be running an app as admin which accesses the network?
Agreed, but that's a question you should be levelling at the developers of Soldat themselves - why are they developing an application which requires Administrator access?

Re:A bit biased? A bit of non sense is more like i (2)

houghi (78078) | more than 6 years ago | (#22272112)

Start explorer, go to soldat directory, open soldat.exe properties. Set compatibility to Windows XP/SP2, disable Aero for this program, run as admin.


And that is why Windows is much easier to use then Linux. The people I know would already look at me as if I was a fish when I would try to explain step 1.

The last step (if I would ever get there) would result in running everything all the time as admin.

If this is your advice to people, you are to be blamed for all the spam I get.

How will emulators etc. deal with Vista? (4, Interesting)

DigitAl56K (805623) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271632)

Here is what I wonder: How will the suites that provide emulation and Windows-compatible API hosts deal with Vista? Will they too eventually have to implement all kinds of crazy code that changes the way the Windows API behaves to make calls respond like they do in Vista, add in all the various "compatibility" and "security" shims that Vista implements to make newer Windows apps behave properly? After all, the developers will have built and tested their applications in this environment.

I wonder how projects such as Wine will ultimately deal with this issue.

Re:How will emulators etc. deal with Vista? (1)

J0nne (924579) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271850)

In winecfg you can change the version of windows WINE should try to be (starting with Windows 2.0, and Vista is already in that list too).

Re:How will emulators etc. deal with Vista? (1)

dhavleak (912889) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271984)

Here is what I wonder: How will the suites that provide emulation and Windows-compatible API hosts deal with Vista?
lol.. that's easy -- the EU will force MS to sell all their IP for the APIs to interested parties for 10,000 Euros, and they will keep rejecting the API documentation until it's practically the same as handing over the code itself. Author of TFA will be posting on /. in glee when that happens.

Good 2D/isometric games to try (1)

rdradar (1110795) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271636)

I recently destroyed my graphics card and now i'm running linux with a standard gfx card that doesnt even work with midtown madness. Whats good games to test then? I've always wanted to try Fallout 2 more, but never got around to it because of it aged graphics. Now it probably would be good tho. Should i start with Fallout 1 or Fallout 2 or do you recommend some other games that do not need 3D card?

"Darwinia for a whopping $1.40" (1)

nmaster64 (867033) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271642)

I'd just like to know where I can get my copy of Darwinia for under two bucks...

What kind of editing job is this? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271654)

What kind of garbage has this site become to? Jesus H. Christ, editor, can you do a more crappy job than this? As soon as an article mentions that a flavor of a MS product is shit, it is somehow news worthy here. WTF?!

Darwinia not working under Vista? (1)

oggiejnr (999258) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271682)

Seems to work for me and that is on a Vista 64-bit system, the most likely to have compatibility problems.

Re:Darwinia not working under Vista? (1)

JoelKatz (46478) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271956)

I'm wondering if there wasn't just something screwy about his system. I've never had a game compatibility problem with Vista and I've run dozens of new and old games. (I've had all the other problems people report with Vista, just not this one.)

Perhaps he had some squirrely hardware or a bad driver. Can others at least replicate his problems with the same games?

Bad comparison, ignorant author (4, Informative)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271694)

This is a pretty poor "comparison". The author makes some dodgy statements (Aero uses more CPU? not on my PC, where dwm.exe, the Desktop Window Manager that manages Aero Glass, averages around 0-2% CPU at any given time), links to some questionable sources (an article about how Vista Beta 2 sucks for gaming? Beta 2 is over a year and a half old), claiming to have used Vista for "over a year" yet having started with Beta 1 (there was no "Beta 1", but a series of CTPs, or Community Technology Previews, over two years ago and went straight to Beta 2 in May 2006 after the "feature complete" February 2006 CTP that could be considered "Beta 1"), and then finishes off by choosing a poor set of games to compare.

Since this article is all about the games, how about we look at those?

  • Soldat works just fine with Vista, if you take the time to make it work. Why do you have to "make" it work? Because the Soldat installer is broken for Vista. It installs into c:\soldat by default, which is not a good idea for non-admin users (apparently it can't read the game textures from there when running as non-admin. If it installed into %programfiles% as it should, things may work better but I'd have to test that by forcing an install into %programfiles%. As it is, to get Soldat working you have to run it as admin (right-click the shortcut, choose "Run as Administrator"). That will fix the lack of graphics issue the author complained about. I didn't suffer any lockups.
  • I haven't played Darwinia, but I have played DefCon and Uplink on my Vista box (from the same developers) and it works perfectly. That doesn't mean Darwinia doesn't have problems, but I find it highly suspect that one game would break on Vista when all others from that developer work perfectly.
  • I don't have Blackthorne, but I've played a number of games in DOSBox that work perfectly fine in Vista, with audio. If he's getting an audio error, either it's a problem with Blackthorne itself or with his DOSBox configuration. He confirmed that by seeing the same error in Linux. My guess is this was simple user error, being unable to properly run DOSBox. If he can't figure that out, there are plenty of frontends (I like D-Fend [wikipedia.org] even though it's been "dead" for two years) that he can use to abstract that away.
  • I just fired up Civ IV to prove it works on Vista and it ran just fine even, though I was already running patch 1.61 (I haven't played Civ IV for probably a year now, yet I was still fully patched. Why wasn't the author?). The original run of Civ IV (which I'm using, and apparently the author is using as well) had a disc printing problem. The second disc was incorrectly labelled "Play", and you're supposed to use the "Install" disk in order to play. If the author is truly as big of a Civ fan as he claims ("When you mess with Civilization, its personal." and "I'd have a better time playing with a steaming pool of diarrhea."), he would've already known this. I didn't suffer any lockups.
That's 3 for 4 working perfectly in Vista for me (I'd call it 4 for 4 if I could replace Darwinia with DefCon), effectively debunking this article with my own set of empirical data.

For posterity, I'm testing on a 2.5 year old Dell laptop with a 1.73GHz Pentium M CPU and an ATI x300 GPU, running on 2GB of RAM and running Vista Ultimate since launch. I'm not a huge PC gamer, but then neither is the author so it's a fair comparison. These days, about the only game I play on this laptop is Galactic Civilizations II, which again works flawlessly under Vista.

Also, I'm not getting into performance here because a) I don't really care to do benchmarking -- if a game works well enough for me to play, that's good enough for me, and b) my machine is a laptop, and an old one at that, so it wouldn't really be a fair comparison to the latest and greatest laptops and desktops of today.

Re:Bad comparison, ignorant author (1)

paganizer (566360) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271866)

Out of curiosity, why are you running Vista on your older laptop?
After pretty extensive poking around, I've come up with only 2 reasons that sound sane to me. Reason no. 1 is if you have a Tablet systems; I've had this proved to me, Vista Really rocks for Tablet systems, lots & lots of support built in.
Reason no. 2 is a little less clear, but I can see it; if you've got a fast multicore system with 2GB+ of RAM and a Blazing fast Video Card, Vista w/ Aero is pretty, and there are enough free resources that things won't ALWAYS be slower than if you were running on Win2k/XP. According to Microsoft, 2GB is the point where their new Memory Management system kicks in and sometimes outperforms XP. They very carefully do not mention Win2k, of course.
So, is it the novelty for you? or does it actually do something better than the OS you were presumably using before you switched?

Re:Bad comparison, ignorant author (2, Informative)

Osty (16825) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271940)

Out of curiosity, why are you running Vista on your older laptop?

Because I can? Because it works? Because the laptop runs it quite well and saves me money not having to buy a new laptop (probably in the cards for this year if I get any more dead pixels in the LCD or if my battery starts dying, though)? The laptop is not dual-core, though I did upgrade to 2GB of RAM and a 7200RPM hard drive (did that back with XP just as a general hardware refresh, not in prep for Vista). Functionality-wise, Aero Glass works perfectly and is properly accelerated on my x300 to keep load off of the CPU (Dell doesn't keep up with the Vista drivers for my laptop anymore, so I have to hack [driverheaven.net] the latest drivers from ATI instead. Note that while the hack tool claims you need to turn off UAC in order to run it, you really only need to run the tool with admin privileges for it to work; yet another case of amateur software developers not "getting it"). The laptop sleeps and resumes properly with Vista like it never did with XP (always had to hibernate, or risk not coming out of sleep at all). I like to play around with writing gadgets for the Sidebar, which isn't available in XP. I would swear that I even get better battery life in Vista than in XP, being able to eek out nearly 3.5 hours of battery life on my 2.5 year old battery that should be hitting its half-life (my last laptop's battery took a nose-dive around year 2), where I was lucky to run for 3 hours in XP with the exact same battery. And I have all of the "expensive" things (Aero, indexing, system restore, etc) running without any impact to performance or battery life, though I don't really know how that's possible :). I even did an upgrade (not a clean install), which is typically a terrible thing to do! Sometimes I think I have a magic Vista installation, since my net experience has been extremely positive where everybody else seems to have a worse experience compared to XP. I get the feeling that my laptop (Dell Inspiron 9300 from 2005) was a popular model with the Windows developers, and may have gotten more focus than other makes and models. Otherwise I can't explain how such an old machine (albeit upgraded) could run Vista so perfectly when so many people claim so many problems with much newer hardware.

So, is it the novelty for you? or does it actually do something better than the OS you were presumably using before you switched?

To be honest, it started out as novelty but now that I've used it for a year and with SP1 on the horizon (next week?), I can't honestly see myself ever going back to XP. What few compatibility issues I've run into have been easily solved either with software updates or by using a different app (I admit that's not always possible, but so far it has been for me). Everything else as mentioned above has been better in Vista than XP, so why would I go back?

(For the record, I'm not a fanboy. I run Linux as well, just not on this machine. See my sig for proof.)

Bleh, article is weaktastic. (5, Insightful)

blacklabelsk8er (839023) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271734)

As much as I'd like to stand around and say "Haha" and post a Nelson pic, this article is extremely uninformed and biased. Cedega/Wine can do some great things, but really now, people still don't know how to set an individual .exe's properties for OS compatibility? Also, I think the setup might have some effect here. A GeforceFX? Jeebus. If you expect reasonable performance on that, I don't know what rock you've been under.

Random experiences (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271782)

Pretty much all the games that I have wanted to try lately have worked very well under Wine. I've probably just been lucky though, I have no doubt there are a lot of games that don't work. In any case I've been very pleased and impressed with wine, and it just keeps getting better.

Here's what I've tried lately:
World of Warcraft, EVE Online, Lord of the Rings Online, Portal, Oblivion, Heroes of Might and Magic III (yeah, there's a linux version, I know), Disciples II, Ignition, American McGee's Alice.

I've also just tried several fairly new demoscene productions, and to my suprise many of them also work extremely well. Some of them even work much better than under Windows XP on my integrated GPU, with no effects missing as far as I can see (and as far as wine reports).

This is why we can't have nice things. (1)

Ranzear (1082021) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271784)

This is some dodgy work to make the worst for Vista and then claim victory for Linux. What next? Claim Vista is broken because you can't use the Mac drivers for your Wacom tablet yet with the right reverse engineering and tweaking you can get some mild workability in Gentoo?

Myth confirmed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22271818)

This happened to me when my brother bought SimCity 4. He was unable to play it (on winXP) but I was playing it with Cedega from his hard drive using his hidden shares (C$, D$, etc).

I'd still advice people to get a Nintendo for gaming and let the PC do the rest. If you really want to game on the PC, Tux Games [tuxgames.com] has plenty of 'em, and wine [winehq.org] does indeed run many (mostly GL based) games, like Half-Life/counterstrike, Command & Conquer, warcraft (except 1), far cry, battlefield, guild wars, elite force (and most other quake3-based games), eve online, most GTA games and many many more.

Also, when wine supports DX10, it'll be the only way of running DX10 games under XP (or any other OS that can run wine besides vista).

The number one way to be safe (1)

NovaX81 (1136085) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271824)

is to be incompatible with all the spyware, adware, and trojan-filled apps available.

Damned if they do, damned if they don't! (5, Insightful)

siyavash (677724) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271826)

Rewrite Windows so it becomes more secure, be gone with legacy junk they said... So Microsoft almost did it but kept some huge legacy still working in Vista. Now they scream "Oh noes, our old legacy stuff breaks!"... Damned if they do, damned if they don't. These so called "Articles" are getting ridiculous, even for Slashdot. Yes, seriously!

Compatibility Issues dialogue for Civ 4 (3, Insightful)

SEMW (967629) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271828)

His writeup for Civilisation 4 was especially amusing. Vista apparently comes up with a dialogue box that says:

This program has known compatibility issues.
Check to see if a solution is available on the Microsoft website
with options for "Check for solutions online" or "Run program". (IIRC, MS regularly releases pack of compatibility shims for different programs based on the number of "Do you want to send this information to Microsoft" crash reports).

TFA's response to this? To not allow the compatibility shimmer to check MS's website, but rather run the program anyway, with the comment "If you [Microsoft] know something is wrong, fix it." This despite the fact that, to any sentient observer, the dialogue box is attempting to get him to let Microsoft do... Ummm, just that. Presumably the author of TFA would prefer Microsoft to break into his house and install newly developed compatibility shims without his knowledge, rather than have to tolerate the chutzpah of -- *gasp!* -- asking him...

Worst self serving headline ever. This fox news? (2)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 6 years ago | (#22271920)

Come on... what a dumb headline. Linux does not run windows apps better... It may run certain games that dont run in vista... but that does not mean it runs windows apps better than vista. It means it runs SOME old games.

The most interesting thing in TFA is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#22272014)

...that Vista freezes/crashes because of an application, that is one of the main problems with Windows.

Makes me feel a bit better (1)

vnaughtdeltat (1167485) | more than 6 years ago | (#22272108)

I was concerned for a while about some sort of dogmatic ./ bias against Vista (and MS in general), but seeing all of these comments along the lines of "dumbass guy didn't even run his Windows right" brings back a bit of my faith in the scientific method. Or at least its application around these parts...

I call bs (1)

Britz (170620) | more than 6 years ago | (#22272122)

Just recently I went to a LAN. I took my Warcraft 3 install with me (installed under Debian in Wine) and just copied the folder to everyones machine. I was surprised to find that one had Vist on it, and thought it wouldn't work.

But not only Warcraft 3, but all other games we tried that night didn't cause any problems with Vista. We had all kinds of games, old and new.

The point is that even with XP many games made for 9x don't work anymore. Same with Dos and Windows 9x. So with old games your success rate with Wine and Dosbox should be higher than with Vista of course. Not only games, but also many apps. This makes Wine so important for legacy apps and I am very happy to have it.

Point being that serious (not casual) gamers like to play current games. And those games run under Vista. You also need recent graphics hardware that has better support under Windows. The question to debate would be if current games run better under Vista or XP.
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