Bill of Vrongs | Windows Waste ah

Mr. Bill Gates,
I have been a Windows user for as long as I can remember. I have used most versions, right from 3.1 onwards. I thought Windows was the best OS for personal computing. Till I realised, I was living in a dream world. I am not happy.

I am using Windows Vista Basic because I didn't have a choice when I bought my notebook. Believe me, if there was a choice, it would have been Windows XP anyday. I have a couple of bones to pick with this:

Eye candy is nice, but then you also have better things to do than bask in the festivistas. Using the high quality settings is a major no-no when you need stuff to perform at its optimum levels. I used the Performance Measurement tool to rate my machine. I got a modest score of 2.4.(well, for lack of a more-cushion-the-blow kind of adj.) My graphics performance gave me the lowest score. So, I turn off the eye-candy and presto, the score is still 2.4! But there were some minor improvements in the response time of the desktop. You really should take a look at what the open source universe is doing with programs like Beryl and Compiz... Now, that's eye-candy and the best thing, it actually works better than Aero with lower config reqs.

There are a lot of compatibility issues. This is extremely funny, I had to run a demo version of NFS Carbon (released 2007) in Windows 95 compatibility mode, because it just refused to work any other way! I wasn't that lucky with many other programs (3d Mark '03) is an example (Maybe Windows 3.1 should be an option in the list!)

The disk defragmentation tool is a terribly contrived and obscure tool. It doesn't seem to be showing any information regarding the fragmentation on the disk and doesn't display the time remaining for the defrag process to complete. So, I'm using free 3rd party software for my defragmentation. It may not work as well as the one you provided me with, but then I'd still like to see the defrag program pretend to be doing something.

The hibernate option seems to disappear each time I perform a disk cleanup. My friend who also is stuck with Vista has told me that this is due to the Hibernation file being part of the cleanup. But where do I enable hibernation. Another bunch of hoops to jump through. There is no option which lets me customize what happens when I close the lid of my portable computer, and when I search for it, (the new search box at the top-right is really fancy...), I see it there, but clicking on the option doesn't take me there either. So, what do I do? (Ah, I fancy another fix.)

The total lack of sensitivity about running processes astounds me. I had just started encoding a video which would be burned to a DVD after encoding. The entire process would take about 2 hours. So, I just left my computer on (lid up). I return later to find that Windows seems to have put the machine in sleep mode while the DVD was burning! So, what do I have, a frisbee that could have stored 4.7 GB! How can you say that the computer is idle if there is a DVD burning! A continuous I/O process that hasn't exactly completed yet. And it wasn't as if it wasn't plugged in! It was, I assure you. So, I lost So, what if a crucial file is being burned and windows decides to sleep on the job! Will you compensate?

I was given no installation media for Vista when I bought the machine. And also, no explainations accounting for its absence. I only realised it when I needed to install Linux. I had to make my own 'Restore DVDs' and according to their description, they erase everything on the drive (including personal data!!) and restores the machine to it's factory state. Now, why would anybody want to do that unless they had nothing to lose, which is not the case here. I'm a student in college and I have a course on UNIX this semester, you really can't expect me to use only Windows, can you? So, I had to ask for help and then use your partition shrink tool to work around the absence of unallocated disk space (everything was allocated to Windows by default). Are you making sure that I don't use anything else? Is there no way I can do a fresh install of Windows without any of the OEM software? Must I go out and get a new copy, spending INR 5000+ (which I might have already paid for)? I have a license key I have never had to enter so far? Will I be able to use it at all?

I've come to expect certain things from each new version you make us pay for, and I'm sorry to say that nothing has even come close to my experience Linux and Open Source software. I'm only depending on windows because I don't have the bandwith to download open drivers for my devices. Windows Vista has only been a crushing disappointment so far and it is a terrible thing that people are only buying your software just to be held up by the unavailability of a service pack. And yes, installing updates must be my most favourite activity. I don't seem to be doing much else! These things take ages to install... Why? And there's no progress indicator on these things...

And yes, UAC is the probably the worst feature Vista has got. It doesn't do anything for you, nor does it let you run these really simple programs without an extra mouseclick! I've disabled it and am doing fine, thank you.

These may seem like small things, but trust me, it is the small things that really count.
Right now, all I'm looking for is a window out.

Feeling most wasted,
M. Ullas
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