Ok, who hasn’t read about this one? Since Gartner issued their report last week on the current state of Windows, it seems like everybody has had something to say about this topic. Since this one has a little bit of that “Mac vs PC” edge to it, I thought I might as well chime in with my own Vista experience. I’m one of those who haven’t really experienced the downside of Vista, but I’m also not beating the drums to update all the PCs in my company either.
For the past several years, my company has been fairly aggressive in moving to the “latest and greatest” versions of just about anything. For the most part, our experiences have been good. I think the first thing we jumped on, installing almost on the release date was Exchange 2003. We got caught in a situation where we had to upgrade a server, we knew we’d be upgrading to 2003 eventually, so we decided to bite the bullet and dive in without waiting for Service Pack 1. We didn’t encounter any major issues, and it seems like ever since we’ve been fairly aggressive about upgrading, on both the PC and Mac side of things. We ran into a similar convergence of upgrades on the Mac side of things with the launch of OS-X and our conversion to Adobe Creative Suite. We survived that also.
I’ve read all the horrible reviews of Vista, and it always seems like they are accompanied with a slew of comments by people telling their Vista horror stories. The groundswell of opinion against this OS has been impressive to say the least. But what’s actually concerned me more has been Microsoft’s seeming inability, or lack of desire, to fight back. The anecdotal stories attached to many of these reviews always leave me shaking my head – how did so many people manage to have such a difficult time with Vista?
I’ve been running Vista since the late beta stages. Crashes have been non-existent, and any incompatibilities I’ve discovered have been few and far between. UAC was a nuisance during the initial setup of machines, but once I’ve had PCs setup, it really stopped being a bother and frankly, I’d like to know about it when something (including myself) requests admin access. I had a horrible initial experience with my current Dell laptop which was running Vista out-of-the-box, but as soon as I disabled Google desktop the speed increased significantly. I’ve been happy with it ever since.
Frankly, the biggest anecdotal experience I can relate with regard to Vista has been with my daughter’s laptop. I took a chance and loaded her up with Vista over a year ago when she returned to school for the spring semester. She’s had that machine on a college campus for over a year now with everything that entails in terms of computing danger. I got my hands on it about 2 weeks ago expecting to find a real mess, but instead it was running flawlessly. I’m not sure that would experience would have been as trouble-free with any previous version of Windows.
Just like the comments I read from IT people detailing their horror stories, my stories represent a small sample, and they don’t necessarily prove a thing. To be honest, because of the bad press, the fact that I haven’t been overwhelmed with the features of Vista, and the rumors we’re hearing about Vista’s successor, I’m not racing to upgrade my company’s PCs to Vista. I’m also not buying the arguments that Windows is dead.