I know, it s cool to bash Microsoft. And sometimes, it s appropriate. Windows ME was truly bloatware, and Internet Explorer didn t really shape up until the competition showed the way. But Vista is a worthy extension of XP, and all it gets is grief.
As an old gray beard who s been a geek tweaking PCs since before the words "geek", "tweak", and "PC" took on meaning, I m amazed that the armchair techies -- whose jobs depend on the existence of Gates, Microsoft, and Windows -- can find nothing to like in Vista.
And then it hit me. Every negative comment or review about Vista carps about (a) cost and activation, and (b) UAC -- User Account Control. And that s because they re techies, not end users!
Techies have multiple computers and like to switch systems and play. Software that s not free and not authorized for multiple machines, is a pain for techies, who are notoriously clever but impecunious.
And techies, almost by definition, are continually downloading, installing, configuring, and reworking new software -- all conditions that trigger the UAC pop-up in Vista. For a techie, UAC is a toothache that smarts with every chew.
But for the great mass of users -- one machine, and very infrequent technical changes -- Vista is fast, fun, sexy, safe, and stable. Would they like it to be free? Sure, but what a silly idea. In the real world, users expect to pay for their cars, their combs, and the computers, including the operating system.
Now that it s out of the starting gate and over the speed humps, what s not to like about Vista?