Windows Vista RTM (release to manufacturer) came out a few weeks ago; since we have a MSDN Universal account, we have access to download the software for testing (for development). Since we really have no intention of ever doing this (moving to Linux for the production systems) I decided to try it out at home (a few of the other guys will as well).
I took the jump- I backed up my main system (Athlon 64 x2 3800, 3GB of RAM) and killed XP and installed Vista (I tried a different HD, but it appears to be a bad drive!). Not too bad...
- Nero Burning ROM causes some weird object errors; I thought Vista was completely hosed. I found some posts commenting on Nero problems, so I uninstalled- and Vista was back to running smoothly.
- ACDSee 9 has some compatibility issues; hard to put an exact cause, but there was a module that was flagged as incompatible with Vista' during install. I am trying an older version to see if that works.
- EnQueues doesn't work- but it looks like it was written specifically to use the Windows XP directory structure- i.e. c:\documents and settings\ path instead of the new c:\users\ configuration...
Everything else seems to work the same (or better) than before. Programs I have extensively tested:
- NewsLeacher 3.8b6 (works better)
- Firefox 2.0
- Flickr Uploader
- Macromedia Dreamweaver
- iTunes (some issues)
- Harmony Remote Software
- PalmOne Desktop/Hotsync
- Poalr Weblink
- AVG 7.5
I have tried a few others, but that is the main list. Final result- Vista will remain on my main PC.
Second Test: I installed on a laptop; the laptop is about a 1.2Ghz w/ 1GB of RAM. It runs OK as to the applications. It doesn't have a great video card so a lot of the video features are disabled; it runs Ok and seems to resume from standby much faster than XP- however it does seem to burn a little more battery on standby...
Third Test: I replaced the HD in my Windows XP MCE 2005 system (Athlon XP 2800, 2GB RAM) to try out the new media center. Vista runs fine in HD (720p) with my Radeon 9600 card; but there are a lot of Codec issues... I tried the FFDShow codec pack and DiVX and XViD seem to work, but not that well for thumbnails. There were frequent freezes and lockups when changing video folders (hosted on another server via GB network). The TV record schedule also seems to be a little flaky- skipped recordings, unscheduled recordings and wrong names displayed.
After about two days I have swapped the HD back- Vista is not ready for a media center (or my system is not ready for Vista!).
Overall, Vista is very stable- and pretty fast. Memory management seems to be better (i.e. programs that had memory errors before no longer do) and there is better security for installing/removing programs.
Hardware support is excellent- I only had thee devices that needed additional drivers; my Canon Rebel XT, My Polar watch and my Logitech Webcam- Vista found and installed ALL other drivers (printers, sound card, Dell Axim, Treo, video, sound, USB, etc).
A few patches and vendors updates should have Vista running better than XP! :o)