Now, I won't argue that Vista will someday not suck - after all, give an infinite number of monkeys $30 billion a year in cash flow and they'll code Shakespeare. Or whatever. But I have to agree with this post by Glenn Reynolds that Vista is still not ready for prime time. Now, I wrote this same conclusion over a half year ago, but incredibly, no updates of any seriousness have been issued. It is still the mess it was then, and Moore's Law has yet to catch up to make the average machine run it acceptably (particularly with laptops). When I set up the dual boot back to XP on my kid's laptop, I did not make the XP partition large enough because my kids absolutely refuse to install anything on the Vista partition, which they use only because that is where MS Office is installed.
Am I a lone wolf on this issue? Oh my God, am I a Vista denier! Well, check out this announcement from Microsoft reported by ZDNet on June 28:
Microsoft is simplifying the processes via which its PC-maker
partners will be able to provide "downgrade" rights from Windows Vista
to Windows XP for their customers.
Microsoft will implement the first of the policy changes for its
Gold Certified (top-tier) OEM partners within the next couple of weeks.
The company will streamline downgrade-rights policies and procedures
for the broader channel somewhat later, said John Ball, general manager
of Microsoft's U.S. Systems Group....
Microsoft is working on ways to allow the rest of the channel to
take advantage of these simplified downgrade procedures, but is still
in the midst of hashing out the details, Ball said. He didn't have a
timetable for when Microsoft will make its more liberal
downgrade-rights policies available to the rest of its PC partners.
I am not sure this is the sign of a healthy product line when your top customers are demanding easier ability to go back to the old version.
As a side note, I have never, ever liked Macs. First, I never wanted to be one of "the rest of us" and I enjoy tweaking and upgrading too much to be a fan of Macs. Also, I thought their historic resistance to some obvious improvements, like the two-button mouse, was just stupid. All that being said, I will admit that I really like the new iMac I bought my wife. It is perfect for her, and it is gorgeous. The keyboard is not great for speed-typing but it looks really cool and my wife is fine with that. The iMac did a great job with the tough stuff - it immediately recognized the PC's on my network and was able to trade files with them (something our Vista laptop still balks at from time to time) and it set up a network printer on the first try. And, for perhaps the first time ever on a Mac, I didn't feel like the things was wallowing in first gear when compared to my desktop PC.