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Vista Beta 2 review from an OSX user


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#1
nevermind1331

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Review of Vista Beta 2, Windows Media Player 11, Office 2007, Internet Explorer 7 etc... All on an intel imac

Ill start with the easiest to review, Word 2007.

Although still in beta, I have been using Office 2007 as my main word processor (in windows) for quite some time now. It is a vast improvement over office 2003 in many aspects. It sports an entirely new tabbed layout that takes some getting used to, but it preferable to the dropped down menus and toolbars of office 2003. It also look great (on xp anyway, it would not render completely on vista). It features support for saving to pdfís, right from the save as. It has a wealth of new features I could not possibly list here, but the sad fact is that this is the best word processor I have ever used. I only wish it was available for OSX. Itís interface will make it easy for consumers to do things they may not have known they could with previous version of Word.

I have not yet used excel, but Outlook has a nice calendar feature, to which you can drag emails onto dates to make appointments. Sweet. Its search also is works well.

Its quite a shame that office is confined to windows (stop pretending office for osx compares) and is really the one thing that I miss when I use osx (which I do 95% of the time.) I really wish there was something better. I like Pages, which I now use rather than booting into windows for office (or using parallels). But I feel that the importance of Office was not overlooked by Microsoft, and in many ways it is more important than Vista. If Apple had a better solution, I feel it would really help people justify switching. In any case, Office 2007 is a 5 star product, even at this beta stage.

WMP is a strange animal. I always liked WMP10, but before I switched to OSX I always used winamp or musikcube (itunes for windows is a horrible piece of software). However WMP11 probably visually outshines even itunes for now.

WMP no longer sports the usual artist album song browser that it used to, or that itunes currently uses. It now has a visual representation based on the album art. It is a very nice interface that works well, and I like it a lot. I wish itunes for OSX had it actually and it probably eventually will. However, while the interface is now nicer, it is still plagued but WMP functionality. It is extremely slow to add files (itunes on OSX loads all my 7000 songs in seconds) and it crashed a few times for me. URGE could not be used (which may be a huge plus for it). I give it 3 stars.

Now what you were waiting for, my Vista Beta 2 review.

Windows is now a beautiful operating system. Do not try and disagree, it really is (whether you prefer OSX or not). Aero glass looks great, and I like the option to change the color of translucence. Sure sure its copied off of OSX but at least it a good imitation.

Flip 3d is Windows version of OSXís expose (see screenshot). To be honest it is inferior to expose, yet just as functional at the same time. This is fine for windows, it gives the masses that ease of application switching, even if it doesnít look as nice as OSX.

Windows sidebar seems somewhat useless at this stage but it will really depend on the widgetsÖ.errrr I meant gadgets, that windows offers. It will be useful if the gadgets are useful.

The explorer is nicer than ever, and really the one thing in Windows that is superior to OSX (besides Office). While I wish Microsoft had gone along with virtual folder, which I would have loved (imagine a music folder that automatically gets songs added to it as you get them, from anywhere on your hard disk). Explorer still beats finder.

Internet explorer 7 is now actually a usable browser. It now features tabs and a built in search, just like its firefox counterpart. I probably would still use firefox, but I would no longer feel the need to tell others to do so. It works just fine, and at least catches up with firefox.

Lets seeÖ.have I missed anything? Some people would complain about certain quirks of vista, like the fact that you have to press ok about 1000 times just to delete a file but I wont, I mean, its clear that wont be there when vista is released to the public, so why waste breath.

Performance-wise, Vista is fast, as fast as or faster than XP despite the extra effects, clearly a result of the graphics card being utilized properly.

Also, itís still Windows, even at this beta stage my Macs video card did not even need a driver installed. Impressive. Even my HP printer installed without drivers, including its card reader.
Media center is a nonfactor for this review

The taskbar has somewhat changed and is somewhat better organized (it wont be filling up the entire screen
anymore when you want to launch a program)
3 Ĺ Stars.

Conclusions
Vista is not as good as OSX, at least not in this beta version, looking simply at the features and program, ignoring all the errors that will be removed by the final product. However, it does run more like OSX which some people will chastise it for, but I think itís a good thing. Everyone complains how they wish OSX was mainstream like Windows is, yet they complain when Windows becomes more like OSX because they are copying off of Apple. You canít have it both ways. All in all, Vista is a great visual improvement and a good functional improvement. It will be worth upgrading from XP

Thatís about it, feel free to discuss.

In mac dual booting forum I will post how I installed and how I got sound and networking enabled. Fairly trivial.
Hi-Res Screenshots attached.

Attached Files



#2
CoolBits

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What has vista more than xp? Except for eyecandy. I can do everything on xp right now.
Vista is ful of DRM, TPC, HDMI copy protection stuff and maybe "must watch comercials" stuff... so what do i gain with vista? Eyecandy? Not worth it. ;)

Nice review anyway :)

#3
nevermind1331

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actually, i dont believe the tpm stuff is actually functional, but the next version of windows after vista we may have to worry about that, and ill agree lots of what vista adds is eye candy. but hey, who doesnt love eye candy, especially when it doesnt slow you down.

and xp is highly functional, vista is just nicer. flip3d is nice and vista should be more secure, so while perhaps its not everything i would have liked in it, for me its probably what ill run from now on.

for that 3% of the time im not in osx.

#4
jonajona

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For one thing... Vista has Media Center built in which is far more superior than Front Row. The Media Center built in is actually the bomb!! I actually fell in love with it.

Another Thing... Media Player 11 far surpasses iTunes. I don't care what anyone says. I love iTunes and after trying MP11, I have to say that MP11 is way better as far as functionality. Trust me!! It also recognized my iPod - but that is limited since you can't do a lot of iPod functionality. Nevertheless, MP11 is a plus.

And lastly... you're right eye-candy. Yeah... it kinda looks like OSX. But who cares. All those who hate Microsoft will say they copied OSX. Well, do you guys know where most of the eye-candy from OSX came from? OSX copied it off of other OS's - particularly from the Linux community!

All of this "I hate Microsoft" thing is, frankly, getting old. Get over it! Don't get me wrong, I love OSX because... well, it's beautiful. And it has the "cool factor". But that's about it. As far as functionality goes (for me), windows is far more superior. Just try using Dreamweaver in OSX! What a shame!!

Since this is a review for Vista, I have to say "Right on"!! It is a worthy upgrade. I'm using Build 5365 and it is almost functional. Photoshop and Dreamweaver works without hiccups. Although my favorite app, Premiere Pro does not work yet. Office 2007 works like a charm as stated.

Vista is the future of OS's!!

#5
Tiburon

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the build that is floating around is not beta2, it is a preview of it.

#6
myzar

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The explorer is nicer than ever, and really the one thing in Windows that is superior to OSX (besides Office). While I wish Microsoft had gone along with virtual folder, which I would have loved (imagine a music folder that automatically gets songs added to it as you get them, from anywhere on your hard disk). Explorer still beats finder.


Well that's easy , prolly even workbench 3.1 is better than that abomination called finder , i still wonder how anyone in his right mind would use that abort and the stunning thing for me is that people actually prise osx gui .. Returning on vista build 5381 is slow buggy and crappy , m$ is copying the worst pieces from osx like worthless widgets , the retarded search every where, stupid effects on the gui, windows explorer it's so dumbed down that could make finder look like a worth filemanager. Luckily you can disable all the crap and customize it back to a sane os , shame you can't do the same with osx ;) I think i will skip vista entirely stick with win2k3 and wait for longhorn server

#7
nevermind1331

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the build that is floating around is not beta2, it is a preview of it.


thats true, it isnt. but it does say beta 2 in the corner

#8
dtm3dd

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Right to start with I am a Mac fanatic - I love Mac OS X dearly.
Vista, it strikes me is Microsoft playing catchup, and in my opinion it has done well. Nobody can argue with the fact that the interface looks beautiful.
Functionality has improved, even though Vista seems to patronise the user slightly but to be honest Vista should tailor to the low end of users.
So Windows has caught up with Mac Os but 'one more thing'..............

Leopard

Windows has caught up..... but with Tiger. Leopard is going to be its competitor, not Tiger. So depending on what Leopard brings to the table, Windows may end up, once again, behind the times.

#9
Lamertus Loire

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Right to start with I am a Mac fanatic - I love Mac OS X dearly.
Vista, it strikes me is Microsoft playing catchup, and in my opinion it has done well. Nobody can argue with the fact that the interface looks beautiful.
Functionality has improved, even though Vista seems to patronise the user slightly but to be honest Vista should tailor to the low end of users.
So Windows has caught up with Mac Os but 'one more thing'..............

Leopard

Windows has caught up..... but with Tiger. Leopard is going to be its competitor, not Tiger. So depending on what Leopard brings to the table, Windows may end up, once again, behind the times.


I've never been a Mac User. Never. Because most of the software we're using here is compiled for Windows or Linux, it's never been an option to switch to OSX, really. But I like OSX a lot, I'd switch in a heartbeat, if there wouldn't be so many compatibility issues. And honestly, I don't agree about Vista being beautiful - quite the contrary, really. The problem is that Microsoft has no clue at all when it comes to design - Vista looks bloated and eyecandy without looking into it's usability. The glass stuff is nice, but it doesn't add anything to the user experience. They should have contiunued with this here:

http://www.winsupers..._rock_video.wmv

And let the user decide and configure how the desktop should look like. I hate that I can't even see what's behind a window through the glass, cause everythings so blurry. And I don't even see anymore which window is the currently active one, also thanks to glass. It's very, very hard for me to navigate through Vista - Aero Glass is more of a step backwards than anything else. Of course, things could get messy if there would be no blur, but Microsoft showed a few design studies over the years and most of them looked way better than what we'll get now.

http://media.putfile...19-AERO-Concept

There we go.

I dunno why especially OSX users seem to like Vista - It's strange. I think OSX is a wonderful OS, it comes with it's fair share of problems, but I think Apple outperformed Microsoft before they even shipped anything. And I'm sure that Jobs will do his best to kick Microsofts ass when it's time for Leopard. I guess I'll be forced to use Vista in the future - but I'm constantly looking for interesting Linux Distros or the OSX86 thing, cause I've really grown to dislike the way Microsoft designs Operating Systems.

If Apple would streamline everything right now, creating it's own Windows compatibility layer and probably ship OSX with Dells, etc., then I'm sure that they'd have a good chance to bite off a good chunk off Microsofts OS market share. And I think that sooner or later, Google will come up with it's own, free, Linux Distro. That way or the other, it looks like Microsoft has grown too big and they're moving too slowly. If Apple keeps doing their thing and Linux distros grow stronger and stronger, it's just a matter of time before the John Doe User will switch. Most PC Users don't use Windows cause they like it so much, they use Windows, because they don't know anything else.





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