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What caused the extreme negative image of Vista?

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  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    No matter how you look at it - Vista's image is unfortunately tainted (but it has still much more marketshare than Linux+Mac OS combined: http://marketshare.hitslink.com/operating-system-market-share.aspx?qprid=10 !)

     

    But, anyway, what caused the negativity? I must admit that I am a bit baffled - i use Vista since June 07, and had zero problems with it. But I admit, I ran and run it on sufficent hardware (Core 2 Duo, much ram)

    I think the main factor is that much more people use computers now than in 2001, when XP came out. And thus the user base was smaller but contained much more technicaly savy people (percent wise). XP was far from perfect when it was released (Vista's RTM state was much better), but users back then were more prepared to deal with technical difficulties. The most used OS when XP was released was Windows 98 after all, and no can deny that it was crashy and required some "skills".

    Now when Vista came out, XP was on market for more than five years, a whole generation of computer users knew nothing else but XP. So even using another system than XP was quite an adventure for many people. No other Windows OS stayed that long in the market, XP became "teh windows".

    In that light some initial quirks of Vista became grossly overstated, minor problems drivers were blown out of proportion. Driver issues always appeared when a new windows OS was released (I can remember how crappy the first generation drivers for Windows 2000 were - shudder!) but because there were so many computer novices like never before when Vista appeared, or people who knew nothing else but XP and never used any other Windows OS (or any other OS) things, that were fairly standard with EVERY windows (and OS) release, became totaly overblown with the Vista release.

    Another thing were the hardware requirements. Now, every new windows used more hardware resources than its predecessor, but, again, because of the unique situation in 2007 compared to other windows release dates in the past, people just "forgot" that rule or never learned it in the first place.

    Microsoft handled the Vista release like they handled every other windows release in the past. I think that was the downfall. MS didn't see that the userbase changed too much compared to 1995, 1998 or even 2001.

    Now there was of course the DRM fud and all that, but slashdot and co badmouthed every windows release, so I don't think that this was the main reason for the negativity.

    Well, this is just my opinion anyway, what are your opinions, why did Vista get such an image?

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    I think I agree with just about everything you've put there.

    I think the biggest problem with Vista was a serious case of PEBKAC.

  • User profile image
    JeremyJ

    My theory is that people just didn't like the name.  It didn't have enough of an edge to it.  Names with X's in them or numbers tend to do well, but others tend to turn people off.  If you look at operating systems with decent market share then you will see names like XP, OS X, Windows 98, Windows 7, etc.

  • User profile image
    Bas

    Definitely a case of PEBKAC, and more people having access to the internet than during XP's launch, thus more people being exposed to the internet echochamber of suck, and taking it as truth.

    Also, I get the feeling that there's just a sort of vibe that goes around.. like a zeitgeist kind of thing. At Vista's launch, the vibe was bad, and as such Vista was deemed bad. Now we're hitting the other end of the wave, and Windows 7 is hailed as the second coming, even though I get the feeling it's not actually that much better than Vista.

     

  • User profile image
    JohnAskew

    I think it is simply that it was new and required more hardware than folks wanted to provide in order to smoothly transition to it.

    There's also the automatic resentment that many will always have against the biggest player's offerings - pathological rejection.

    In my opinion Vista is untainted.

  • User profile image
    brian.​shapiro

    I had Vista installed on a with 2GB RAM without any noticeable performance problems, starting with Beta 2, despite everyone I came across on the Internet telling me you need at least 3GB RAM to run it well. Now I have Windows 7 installed on the same computer and I can't tell much of a difference.

    I'm sure there are people who ran across problems in their installs, but every release of Windows since Windows 95 has been met with a lot of cynicism from people who dislike Microsoft and spread FUD. I remember when Windows 95 came out all I would read about it was horror stories about people having installations problem. Meanwhile, I was able to install 95 on about a dozen computers without a problem on any one of them. Windows XP when it came out was a very hated OS, but now everyone is calling it the best OS that Microsoft made.

    People need to realize that some of the negative feelings about Microsoft products is not their fault. It's that simple. Vista had some problems with its release, sure; I've been a critic of Vista also. But unless a Windows release is flawless and perfect people will badmouth it.

     

  • User profile image
    AndyC

    Ambition and rumours.

    There was so much hype for how amazing "Longhorn" would be, so many overstatements (many of which never originated from Microsoft, though some did) and so many stunning concept videos that simply weren't ever going to be reality. Then features started getting dropped or scaled back (which was really only an issue because people had heard of them) and then there were long delays. The interwebblogs crowd starting to declare Vista a failure, the parroting tech journalists followed suit and declared Vista a disaster and then people who'd never even thought about it decided they'd all heard so much about how it was a disaster that they didn't want anything to do with it.

    None of it necessarily has anything to do with the actual product called Vista at all, but that's kind of beside the point.

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    I think that scare-mongering article about how Vista's DRM would bring about the end of civilization also had a lot to do with it. I still sometimes have people ask me about that, because they think it's true.

    Which just goes to show, you can get people to believe anything as long as you make enough noise.

  • User profile image
    elmer

    Vista does have its issues, and there is no getting away from that, but the level of contempt shown was completely out of proportion.

    My theory is that between the launch of XP and the launch of VISTA, the Internet exploded, and gave everyone a soapbox to stand on. At the same time, the consumer market exploded... people who knew nothing about computers now owned one, their kids had them, and anyone who could manage a power-switch reckoned they understood them.

    We now have the crazy situation where people are taking advice from anonymous self-proclaimed experts, and using it as a basis for making decisions, because its easier than thinking for themselves or actually spending time doing their own investigating.

    Furthermore, people like to join “clubs” – that part of our nature – and there is a “mob” mentality that you need to align yourself to if you want to have street-cred with any group. Anti-MS groups, pro-oss groups, pro-osx groups... they have all become forces simply due to self-fulfilling prophecy of believing what the group says to be true because you are a member.

    Lately I am too often stunned when listening to IT managers rant against some MS product and it’s painfully obvious they don’t know what they are talking about... and when pushed as to the source, it turns out they are taking advice from some 14yo kid on a forum site.

  • User profile image
    Koogle

    "We now have the crazy situation where people are taking advice from anonymous self-proclaimed experts, and using it as a basis for making decisions, because its easier than thinking for themselves or actually spending time doing their own investigating."

    LOL

    .. that is soo funny seeing as it was mostly stupid people who ended up buying Vista in the first place.

     you guys fail as bad as MS at identifying all the areas of fail bad crap design within its products. 

  • User profile image
    wastingtime​withforums

    "Now we're hitting the other end of the wave, and Windows 7 is hailed as the second coming, even though I get the feeling it's not actually that much better than Vista."

    ------------------------

    Yea, I am baffled by that too. I have installed the Windows 7 beta, and I was not particulary impressed by it. It looked and felt just like vista, just with the new taskbar and some other tweaks. It's like Vista SP3.

    Vista was often unfairly mocked as "XP Service Pack 3" two years ago, something I do not agree with. But Windows 7.. I think it's more justified to call win7 as a service pack to Vista.

    Win7 is quite a boring windows release in my opinion, it has some tweaks and improvements and a new taskbar, but.. that's it mostly. Vista was much more ground breaking, even in the cutted state it was released in - DWM, Aero, the new IP stack, the new sound stack, new printer architecture. And despite all that, Win7 is so grotesquely overhyped by the same people who insisted that Vista is the worst thing that affected humanity since the black death.

    Win7 is rated so good, because it uses the same driver interface and mostly the same kernel as Vista, and the Vista drivers are mature now. That's it for the most part. I don't think this fact deserves such a high praise, since the mature drivers work of course with Vista too.

    Not that something is bad about 7, far from it, but I don't get what's so damn sexy about it, compared to Vista.

    I am a bit pessimistic about future Windows releases. Somewhat radical new releases like Vista are gettng badmouthed to the extreme now, while conservative updates like 7 are lauded as God's gift to humanity. That makes it harder to release truly new technologies for the windows plattform, since these will come of course with initial problems, and problems will be blown out of proportion.

    One main problem is the stupidity of tech-"journalists". They are incompetent lazy fools. If one "journalist" sets the tone, all the others just follow. Ten years ago, some trainee at a backwater PC journal wrote better stuff than all the idiots at cnet, zdnet combined now. It went really downhill.

    Pleasing the tech-"journalists" reminds of the following allegory in Plato's republic:

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    I might compare them to a man who should study the tempers and desires of a mighty strong beast who is fed by him--he would learn how to approach and handle him, also at what times and from what causes he is dangerous or the reverse, and what is the meaning of his several cries, and by what sounds, when another utters them, he is soothed or infuriated; and you may suppose further, that when, by continually attending upon him, he has become perfect in all this, he calls his knowledge wisdom, and makes of it a system or art, which he proceeds to teach, although he has no real notion of what he means by the principles or passions of which he is speaking, but calls this honourable and that dishonourable, or good or evil, or just or unjust, all in accordance with the tastes and tempers of the great brute. Good he pronounces to be that in which the beast delights and evil to be that which he dislikes; and he can give no other account of them except that the just and noble are the necessary, having never himself seen, and having no power of explaining to others the nature of either, or the difference between them, which is immense.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    Koogle said:

    "We now have the crazy situation where people are taking advice from anonymous self-proclaimed experts, and using it as a basis for making decisions, because its easier than thinking for themselves or actually spending time doing their own investigating."

    LOL

    .. that is soo funny seeing as it was mostly stupid people who ended up buying Vista in the first place.

     you guys fail as bad as MS at identifying all the areas of fail bad crap design within its products. 

    That's a nice piece of Ad hominem you've got going there.

    Care to come back after taking critical thinking classes?

  • User profile image
    harlock123

    I believe the problem stems from the unfortunate decision to put the VISTA capable tag on equipment that was obviously not really capable of properly running the thing properly. Sure a system needs 1 gig of ram but if you have a crappy integrated video controller using some of your ram you dont really have 1 gig of ram do you?.. Not to mention the fact that the crappy integrated video does not fully support vista's demands on the subsystem, and the fact that these systems ship with low end of everything made for a really bad experiance for the folks you jumped in at that time. The systems were marginal and often enough could run XP just fine but initially XP was not available. These people had a bad experiance as their first impression. Their savvy friends might have told them 'Hey you need some more ram and a better video card', but what they heard was 'Its because oif VISTA'.

    First impressions being the hardest to sway, and word of mouth being exponentially greater of a marketing force than all of Bills Billions could buy. Now I love vista but I still hear folks saying vista stinks.... Its unfair but so is life. some of this mess was brouigh down by Bills minions unto themselves however, the rest of it is just an unfortunate qwinky dink....

     

     

     

  • User profile image
    Simo

    Drivers (either bad or non-existent), a long wait from the previous release and an over-generous dose of hype....

    If I remember rightly there was an MS board member that wrote a steaming letter to Steve Ballmer after he put the freshly minted  Vista disk into his home PC and turned the hub of his family's 'digital lifestyle' into a 'f---ing email machine'.

    HP readily expected my parents to go out and replace their 1 year old laser printer with a new one as they were not going to provide Vista drivers. Luckily HP's XP drivers came with an install routine that was so badly written that the necessary dlls would get installed correctly before crashing.

    Edit: hang on a minute... In Vista RTM, network file copy was totally crippled. I remember being shocked when I had to copy my music around for the first time. Also, there was a screaming bug with explorer file views. Some folders would get a special view setting (Music management, picture management) tattooed to the folder. Impossible to change. These were shocking bugs to go to production and force on millions of users. It was enough to convince me not to bring Vista into my work environment.

    I think we're in danger of looking back with the rose-tinted spectacles and blaming the industry press for negative reviews. Vista RTM had shockingly bad quality issues, high real-world hardware requirements and took five-ish years to deliver but only represented two years of development work.

  • User profile image
    intelman

    Windows XP is mature Vista is not. People who surf the net and check email would have nothing to gain when moving to Vista. In fact, for many people the move will not fundamentally change how they use their computer.

    Windows 7 is different. It actually feels faster. Things seem snappier, the taskbar is smarter, file sharing is simplified (complicated in some respects too). Microsoft gets the message now, people want a very performant OS (they have a long way to go before many will be happy, operating system rot needs to be solved...) and a secure OS. Microsoft arguably has some pretty secure software now, and with Windows 7, they have something decently performant as well.

  • User profile image
    GoddersUK

    Simo said:

    Drivers (either bad or non-existent), a long wait from the previous release and an over-generous dose of hype....

    If I remember rightly there was an MS board member that wrote a steaming letter to Steve Ballmer after he put the freshly minted  Vista disk into his home PC and turned the hub of his family's 'digital lifestyle' into a 'f---ing email machine'.

    HP readily expected my parents to go out and replace their 1 year old laser printer with a new one as they were not going to provide Vista drivers. Luckily HP's XP drivers came with an install routine that was so badly written that the necessary dlls would get installed correctly before crashing.

    Edit: hang on a minute... In Vista RTM, network file copy was totally crippled. I remember being shocked when I had to copy my music around for the first time. Also, there was a screaming bug with explorer file views. Some folders would get a special view setting (Music management, picture management) tattooed to the folder. Impossible to change. These were shocking bugs to go to production and force on millions of users. It was enough to convince me not to bring Vista into my work environment.

    I think we're in danger of looking back with the rose-tinted spectacles and blaming the industry press for negative reviews. Vista RTM had shockingly bad quality issues, high real-world hardware requirements and took five-ish years to deliver but only represented two years of development work.

    HP readily expected my parents to go out and replace their 1 year old laser printer with a new one as they were not going to provide Vista drivers. Luckily HP's XP drivers came with an install routine that was so badly written that the necessary dlls would get installed correctly before crashing.

    Really? I have just the opposite expierience. My parent's ancient HP LASERJet works fine under Vista. In fact the setup routine was somewhat simpler in Vista because it's run from a print server and Vista seemed to handle that better.

  • User profile image
    Simo

    GoddersUK said:
    Simo said:
    *snip*

    HP readily expected my parents to go out and replace their 1 year old laser printer with a new one as they were not going to provide Vista drivers. Luckily HP's XP drivers came with an install routine that was so badly written that the necessary dlls would get installed correctly before crashing.

    Really? I have just the opposite expierience. My parent's ancient HP LASERJet works fine under Vista. In fact the setup routine was somewhat simpler in Vista because it's run from a print server and Vista seemed to handle that better.

    Yep, http://h20000.www2.hp.com/bizsupport/TechSupport/SoftwareIndex.jsp?lang=en&cc=uk&prodNameId=239140&prodTypeId=18972&prodSeriesId=239135&swLang=8&taskId=135&swEnvOID=2093

    they spent approx £400 the year before on a LaserJet 1500. No drivers for Vista. I was surprised and then pi--ed off. But as I said, disaster averted as I managed to get the basic XP dlls onto their PC.

  • User profile image
    LCARSNxG

    I am honestly of the opinion that crapware contributes largely to the negative perceptions of Windows in general (regardless of version).

    In my experience, pretty much every version of Windows works just fine out of the box as long as you have the correct drivers installed. A vanilla Windows install "Just Works".

    However, when people purchase an OEM machine, they don't get just Windows and drivers. They also get a bunch of poorly written resource hogging bloat and trialware that make the system unstable and error prone. The drivers that come pre-installed are almost always out of date. An OEM Windows install does not "Just Work".

    Naturally, when I purchase a new laptop, the first thing I do is wipe it and re-install Windows and the appropriate drivers. However, the majority of users out there aren't technically savvy enough to do this. I understand that OEM's make lots of extra cash on each computer sold but I would rather pay them that extra cash myself and not deal with the bloat.

    I believe that this is a large contributing factor for why OSX and Linux are percieved as "better". Those operating systems are almost always experienced through vanilla installations where Windows is almost always experienced through OEM bloat installations.

    I wish Microsoft could do something about this problem but I don't see what they could do about it.

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