How S-L-O-W Will Vista Go?

By David Morgenstern  |  Posted 2006-08-25 Print this article Print

Opinion: The latest build of Window Vista is running faster, testers say. But will it be fast enough when it's doing real work next year on our desktops? Or will we absolutely need some special sauce to keep performance up to snuff?

The complaints about sluggish performance in Windows Vista keep growing. While it's unfair to point to beta software apps—or whatever Microsoft wants to call them—the warning flags are already evident.

A batch of complaints reached my inbox following my recent column looking at Apple's Mac OS X Leopard and Vista. One message, from reader Randall Asato, warned that folks thinking they can run Aero on older hardware will be out of luck.

Asato observed that the demo games of Mahjong and Solitaire included with the Beta ran "awfully slow," even with the drivers written for Vista. His system has a 2.8GHz Intel P4 processor, 768MB of memory and an ATI All-In-Wonder 2006 AGP, which he admits is not the most recent GPU, "but it's no slouch."

He said he expected that most upgraders will be at the least forced to purchase a new video card with sufficient VRAM (video RAM).

"The only graphics cards that'll do justice for Vista Aero will probably be in PCIe [Express] by that time—out of luck for those with and AGP or (gasp!) only standard PCI," he wrote.

Never fear. Microsoft's Vista team has focused on performance. On Aug. 25, Redmond released Pre-RC1 Build 5536.16385, and the company says it runs faster than the previous flavors.

However, there are signs that the base performance of Vista on almost any hardware configuration may disappoint. Or at least concerns that Vista will run sluggishly on the system configs that Windows buyers are accustomed to.

Read the full story on eWEEK.com: How S-L-O-W Will Vista Go?

David Morgenstern is Executive Editor/Special Projects of eWEEK. Previously, he served as the news editor of Ziff Davis Internet and editor for Ziff Davis' Storage Supersite.

In 'the days,' he was an award-winning editor with the heralded MacWEEK newsweekly as well as eMediaweekly, a trade publication for managers of professional digital content creation.

David has also worked on the vendor side of the industry, including companies offering professional displays and color-calibration technology, and Internet video.

He can be reached here.


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