Article by LawReader Senior Editor Stan Billingsley 

Our experience with Microsoft’s new Vista operating system ended in our telling Matt Simons our tech guru to “take Vista off and reinstall Windows XP!?.  He loved this because he told me to wait till the Vista bugs were worked out…but of course I knew better.

Always wanting to stay cutting edge, we installed Vista Premium on one of our computers (mine!) and the results were terrible.   First let me say that my computer is a Sony with all the bells and whistles and a 1 gig ram card.

The first problem we noticed was that the Sony sound card was not compatible with Vista so I have no sound until Sony issues a new driver…and we don’t know when this might be.

Secondly, we wanted Vista because it advertised that it allowed you to find files easier than other operating systems.  We noticed right off that it was much harder to find a file we had saved.

When we tried to find a file to attach to an e-mail, it took almost half an hour.  After that learning curve we still didn’t have it down, and often had to look at three or four different locations on my computer to find the file to attach….and when using that same method the next time it didn’t necessarily work.  When we clicked SAVE in Word we had no way of knowing where the file was going to be saved.

We found at least one occasion where the name for a file we had saved, was changed by Vista to another name.  We almost did not find that file again.  I really don’t want to play guessing games with my computer over who can assign the best names to a file.  The computer should work with me and not against me.

Of yes, we use Word to edit stories and then post them online through a PHP Linux based system.  This worked fine under Windows XP, but the PHP editor and Vista don’t work together well, and I have had to e-mail my postings to another computer and then call it up and post it from the non-Vista computer.  

Again I note that Vista is supposed to do things better and faster, but that has not been my experience.

We suggest that you delay the installation or upgrade to Vista until they have worked out some of these problems and the other software that you use catches’ up with Vista.   This is something we will reconsider next year…but for now, we are stripping Vista off our computer and hoping we still have a copy of Windows XP to reinstall.  XP worked just fine.

We have received the following advice:
Windows Vista isn’t exactly a gadget. But it does run on one. And if you want to keep your largest toy as up to date as possible, you may feel tempted to upgrade to Microsoft’s latest operating system. CNET’s Merritt suggests you wait. As with every new operating system, there are always some bugs that need to be worked out in the beginning.

Also, if you really want to exploit Vista’s cool new advances, such as the transparent menu bars, then you’ll need to purchase the premium version. There’s just one problem: There’s no guarantee that your current computer can handle it. PCs that are even just a couple of years old don’t have enough memory to support it. You’ll need 1GB of RAM memory and 15GB of free memory on a 40GB hard drive to run the “premium” package. In the meantime, if you’re happy with your current version of Windows, Merritt suggests sticking with it. There’s no huge benefit to upgrading now. Just keep using your current computer until you need to buy a new one and then you’ll get a cleaned up version of Vista for free.

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