Vista Impressions (and comparison to OSX) (56k warning)

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Chone, Dec 9, 2006.

  1. Chone macrumors 65816

    Chone

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    #1
    Microsoft has finally completed development on Windows Vista and it has gone gold, while it may not be going for sale until January 2007 many people have already gotten their hands on the RTM build of Vista (build 6000).

    I am one of those people, I am also a lifelong user of Mac OS and a 6 year user of Windows and while I do use Windows more I've never doubted of OSX's superiority (in some aspects Windows is better though), now Microsoft is playing catch up to Apple with the release of Windows Vista, a huge jump over from Windows XP.

    But what does this mean to Apple? Should they feel threatened by Microsoft's newfound love for developing awesome software (Windows Live Messenger, Internet Explorer 7, Microsoft Office 2007, Microsoft Expression, Xbox360 Dashboard :p ), well I think they do because while Vista may "copy" a lot of features from OSX it still implements them in a fresh way that still feels like Windows and not a ripoff... it may still take Microsoft some time to create a truly superior OS to Apple's but Vista is a big step in the right direction.

    But what does Vista "copy" from OSX, well first of all is the Aero interface which I will say is downright better looking, better performing and more functional than OSX's Aqua, Aero is more pleasant to use, windows and notifications fade in and out much more pleasantly, the "transparent glass" effect in windows is very nice, the font is very pleasant, the menus are easy on the eyes and very pleasing and everything looks so new and modern, here is a picture showcasing the glass effect and the new look of windows
    [​IMG]
    This is Aqua (or should we call it metal?) by comparison.
    [​IMG]

    There is also Flip3D, which is Microsoft's take on Expose, XP has always had the option of "Showing the Desktop" but now Vista offers Flip3D... hmm, in a nutshell Expose is still better than Flip3D, its hard to say why without sounding contradicting, basically, Flip3D seems "superior" in both visuals and function but at the end of the day Expose is just more productive, the lack of a corner mouse hotpoint makes Flip3D a novelty for me and while Flip3D looks more striking and allows you to scroll through Windows as in a 3D wheel, Expose's implementation works better for me, plus its easier to see the content of windows than in Flip3D. Don't get me wrong though, Flip3D is by no means a cheesy feature, in fact its pretty darn nice but Expose is still better as far as productivity and everyday usage goes. A pic of Flip3D in action.
    [​IMG]
    This is expose by comparison, the clear winner here is rather obvious:
    [​IMG]

    Then there is the Windows Sidebar, which is Vista's equivalent of the dashboard... however, the Sidebar works differently than the dashboard, first it behaves like another window (though it does not look like one) meaning it will stack with other windows and will not be always on top (though you can set it to do that if you like), hiding and showing it is not as simple as on OSX, you have to right click the sidebar and choose hide and bringing it back up is just a matter of pressing the sidebar button on the taskbar, but its still not as fast as Dashboard, one cool thing however is that you can detach and attach gadgets (widgets) from the sidebar at will, unlike OSX's rather complicated and obscure method, I'm not a big fan of widgets and I never get to use them much so Sidebar and Dashboard end up being the same to me, but there are some things some will like about sidebar and others will like some things about dashboard, its a matter of personal preference, here is a pic of it showcasing it and also the nifty Aero interface.
    [​IMG]
    This is Dashboard by comparison, in my experience Sidebar crushes Dashboard, its just a lot better and more usable, even if it doesn't look as purdy.
    [​IMG]

    Indexed searching, OSX calls it Spotlight, Windows just calls it "Search" , either way they both work the same way, by indexing, you are all very familiar with this and Vista's search works very similar, you have search boxes in every Windows Explorer window though and in the Start menu, its very fast (as fast as spotlight), it also categorizes findings by type (program, document, etc) and also allows you to save searches and do hmm "smart searches" which means you can choose to search for "recently changed" or files "shared by me". Initial indexing is just as long as on OSX and slows down if you are using the computer, indexing has thus far took 4 hours for me while using the computer and I have 200GB worth of data or so so its not too bad since I can still use the computer normally, in any case, even if it was 12 hours... its just a one time deal. What works better? None really, Windows search is superb and spotlight is superb as well, I say they are equal. Picture showcasing the query "itunes" and a few other search related windows.
    [​IMG]
    This is spotlight by comparison:
    [​IMG]

    Well I think that covers the big similarities between OSX and Vista, though thats really just the top of what Vista offers, I might add more to this thread (including some better pictures of Aero) but I think that will do for now, I will gladly answer any questions you might have about Vista and how it compares to OSX, including side by side pictures of OSX and Vista and the features they "share".
     
  2. BGil macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2005
    #2
    You can access the sidebar via winkey+spacebar
     
  3. killmoms macrumors 68040

    killmoms

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    Location:
    Washington, DC
    #3
    See, I know it's a matter of personal taste, but I still find Aero garish. It's not as bad as XP, sure, but that whole transparent blurry glass thing doesn't seem cool to me—just makes things hard to read. And what's with "no window title in Explorer windows?" Retarded. Entire windows made out of the "glass" material like the Gadgets selector? Even MORE retarded. Not only is the content in back obscured, but the whole thing is transparent enough that the other stuff becomes hard to read. Yeah, it's cool as a demo for about five minutes, but then it just makes me think "I'm spending a lot of CPU and GPU cycles just to make my interface LESS legible? Lame."

    Then there's the whole issue of having tons of other random colors throughout the interface. The teal, the light blue, the gray, the black start bar... It all just looks unprofessional and un-integrated, mish-mash of all this different crap. I actually think it looks WORSE than OS X's plethora of themes (which could stand to be cut down a little, c'mon Leopard)—at least they all work together and complement each other pretty well. And don't get me started on how old GDI apps still seem to use GDI drawing instead of Aero, making the whole mess even MORE Frankenstein-like.

    Flip3D is basically useless, btw. The whole point is to have access to all windows at once and be able to see them. It's purely eye-candy, an alternate Alt+Tab, and I hate it for existing, mostly because it's ****ing retarded.

    Maybe it's just me, but I don't see the "huge jump." All I see is a supposedly better security model (good, but nothing to get excited about), an interface that is debateably better (although I think just about on par with XP in terms of ugliness, and definitely less legible/usable), and no WinFS (which was all that really interested me in the first place). With that gone and this being all that's left, I can't say I care much.

    I dunno. I'm not sold on Vista as an OS. Certainly not as a competitor to OS X. And DEFINITELY not with Leopard around the corner.
     
  4. Max Payne macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2006
    Location:
    Brisbane, Australia
    #4
    It looks beautiful and promising. I hope they will ease on the viruses and trojans. I might even have a copy for my Old PCs. Does M$ offer a mutli user copy i.e. 5 users or 10?

    Thank you for the pictures.
     
  5. wookyhoo macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2006
    Location:
    Devon, England
    #5
    We have a few Vista machines at work and I don't think it looks very good at all.

    Other than that very first "Ooo, shiny" feeling when you see it for the first time. After a few minutes it's just a bit bleh (to me).

    :D
     
  6. rock6079 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #6
    definately looks interesting and while i dont actually use windows on any regular basis im always excited to try out any new software, especially OS'. thanks for the pics!
     
  7. ricksbrain macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2005
    Location:
    Miami, FL
    #7
    I want to like it, actually. I just... don't. It does seem garish, like the transparency and teh Shiny® were added because they could (or had to, really so it appears to be more than it is-- XP+). The transparency is distracting-- why would you want to look through everything and see smudges? It's practically useless and I think ultimately detracts from teh Shiny® because my eye automatically wants to look at the smudge to figure out what hasn't rendered properly.
     
  8. Shadow macrumors 68000

    Shadow

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2006
    Location:
    Keele, United Kingdom
    #8
    Totally agree. When I had Pre-RC1 on my MacBook (yes I know) I used it for about 30 mins (on the toilet, just incase ;) ) and it was really horrible. After about 10 mins it was just 'meh' and after 20 I really wished I was back in Mac OS X. As far as Windows goes, I'd say XP is probably the best.

    Vista definitely leaves things to be desirable. Aero is nice and all, but once you get a few windows open it all gets a bit confusing. The Explorer feels very empty, and I want the 'go up one level' feature back dammit!

    Gadgets is just horrible, taking up screen space (not a problem if you have a huge reso monitor, but most people use 1024x768, as do I on my PC).They actually had a major breakthrough with gadgets-they managed to change only 2 letters on the name but STILL rip-off Apple (Widgets & Gadgets...totally different things :rolleyes: ).

    Flip3D looks good, but then fails at the use. Its not as functional as Expose (can't show windows open from only 1 app, and only lets you see a bit of the window anyway).

    And then there other quirks, like the similarites between the default wallpaper on Mac OS X and Vista, Spotlight and Search, and what's up with not letting maximized apps have transparency?!

    Overall, Vista is very dissapointing, and eventually MS will force it upon all Windows users (ie, artificially requiring people to upgrade to use *insert latest Microsoft app here*). I really wanted Vista to be good, for the Windows community.
     
  9. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

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  10. mattster16 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    #10
    That transparency just introduces areas of blurriness all over your screen. It makes me feel like I'm drunk trying to use my computer.
     
  11. BoyBach macrumors 68040

    BoyBach

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    Feb 24, 2006
    Location:
    UK
    #11
  12. Nuc macrumors 6502a

    Nuc

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    Location:
    TN
    #12
    I agree. It's very distracting...

    Nuc
     
  13. poppe macrumors 68020

    poppe

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    Apr 29, 2006
    Location:
    Woodland Hills
    #13
    I'd say the Windows people are going to be very happy and very satisfied...
     
  14. weg macrumors 6502a

    weg

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2004
    Location:
    nj
    #14
    I kinda like the look of Vista, but for anyone who doesn't: Guess you can just turn Aero off or even get the cheaper version of Windows if you don't need it. As for Leopard, I'm not quite sure if Apple is heading in the right direction. I already don't like the widget feature of OS X very much (don't use it at all), it's kinda inconsistent with the rest of the user interface. Now, Apple is adding this time-machine (or whatever they call it), which just adds additional inconsistency (btw., they'll soon run out of function keys for shortcuts for all these features). Even the look of OS X isn't consistent anymore.. think of iTunes. Reminds me very much of my Linux machine, where every application has its own looks...

    Furthermore, MS provides what I've wanted for a long time: Support for Tablet PCs.. I'm using my Wacom Tablet a lot, but it's a pain to carry around and plug it in every time I use my laptop. It would be nice to have one built in, but obviously, Steve is not going to make it happen.. so we'll see, when my 12" Powerbook isn't good enough for me anymore, I might just go for the IBM X61.
     
  15. monke macrumors 65816

    monke

    Joined:
    May 30, 2005
    #15
    Totally. Now they can keep those every so important Virus scanners and their anti-spyware programs along with another 2 or 3 firewalls. :p

    Windows users make computing a hobby again. :)
     
  16. dornoforpyros macrumors 68040

    dornoforpyros

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    Calgary, AB
    #16
    It's Strong Bad! how long have you been in this interweb thing? :p
     
  17. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
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    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #17
    The UI or "shell" is only one aspect of an OS. Until we get hard data we won't now how it will hold up to virus attacks, new hardware, old hardware, multicore cpus running multithreaded apps, etc.

    But, of course, people will buy it based on the UI. :rolleyes:
     
  18. Chone thread starter macrumors 65816

    Chone

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    #18
    Thats true but hey, even with the crummy 9600SE in my PC its still faster than Windows XP, the interface lags a little sometimes but its nothing serious, I can't wait to see how it runs on my Mac Pro. As for virus attacks, well honestly XP was already pretty bombproof if configured right, Vista comes with Windows Defender and the Firewall right from the get go, all you need is an anti virus and I don't think you'll need to configure much more than that for security, there is also UAC and a few other security measures.

    Performance wise... well its a mixed bag for me, booting is faster but shutting down takes a long time, beta vista drivers for the graphic card are not as good and reliable as the ones I use in XP, Vista had drivers for right about everything in my computer from the get go, all I needed to do is connect to Windows Update to get the sound driver but even so, Vista still feels like a beta mainly because of software incompatibilies, iTunes works perfectly for example but others apps are dodgy at best, once I have my 6800XT RMA'ed and a demanding Vista/XP fully compatible app comes along then I'll make some comparisons, for the moment, I'll be fooling around with Vista for the minor stuff, you know, internet, music, instant messaging and solitarie but I'll resort to XP or OSX when I need some real work get done or just want to play a game other than solitaire (no matter how neat the new version is).

    The future is bright though... things should look much better in January when its released but for the moment, dual boot XP and Vista, do NOT abandon XP just yet.
     
  19. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
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    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #19
    Good to hear your experiences of it. We will know more about virus attacks etc when it rolls out and people get a chance to develop their "software". I remember when XP rolled out, my company said they would stick to NT4 until all the kinks were worked out. Took nearly 2 years before we got there.
     
  20. mattster16 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    #20

    Yeah... If configured right. If you need to add third party antivirus software for security then I don't see your logic on how XP is itself 'bombproof'. If an OS is truly secure you don't need to configure anything or add additional programs.

    I guess Microsoft needs to keep the anti-virus industry happy somehow though. :rolleyes:
     
  21. xUKHCx Administrator emeritus

    xUKHCx

    Joined:
    Jan 15, 2006
    Location:
    The Kop
    #21
    4 hours?? I currently have 220Gb worth of data on my computer and spotlight took little over 15 minutes to index the entire contents.


    In regards to the first point about aero being better, i personally think it looks alright but i got bored with it very quickly. One thing is a major show stopper from me with aero and that is the way that if text is behind the window it looks absolutely SHOCKING as shown in the first picture.

    [​IMG]
     
  22. mattster16 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Apr 18, 2004
    #22
    Yeah, spotlight doesn't take nearly that long.

    I downloaded Windows Desktop Search for XP, which also does indexing, and it was taking so long I just cancelled and uninstalled it. It makes a huge production out of indexing and pauses when you use your computer and does it at certain times of the day, etc, etc. It reminds me of a virus scan.

    Spotlight just does it once and then you never hear about indexing again. It just keeps track as you use your computer.
     
  23. SMM macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    Sep 22, 2006
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    Tiger Mountain - WA State
    #23
    I am not sure how Windows can catch up with OSX. How are they going to incorporate new features, until Apple shows them what they are? Vista is an intellectual rip-off of Apple's engineering. It is really lame. :eek:
     
  24. crees! macrumors 68000

    crees!

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2003
    Location:
    MD/VA/DC
    #24
    Exactly.. when I saw the first image with iTunes I thought you blurred out what was playing because you didn't want anyone to know. Really.. the "glass" makes it very difficult and distracting to focus on the app you have in front. My vote, thumbs down for it. And if Apple ever decides to do something similar in the future they sure the heck better give an option to disable it.
     
  25. Chone thread starter macrumors 65816

    Chone

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2006
    #25
    Well, actually, blurred out is better than transparency, I mean that would be more distracting, the current blur gives a unique look to Windows without making a mess with transparency but I guess its a matter of preference, I don´t mind it at all and I think its better than Aqua (which I am using right now), I like Vista thus far and the interface is configurable anyway (you can choose to have all of Aero minus transparent glass) but I guess to each his own, I do however think its worth trying it because pictures don´t tell the whole story, when you actually just sit down and use the system you´ll find out the glass is not obstrusive and actually looks pretty good but hey thats just me.
     

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