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Old 01-22-2007, 09:38 PM   #1
Rob Williams
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Default Top 8 Vista Annoyances

I've been using Vista frequently since it lost it's Longhorn code name. During that time, I've found one annoyance after another that just makes me ask, "Why did they do this?!" Read on to share my gripes and maybe even agree with me.

You can read the full article here and discuss it here.
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Old 01-22-2007, 11:55 PM   #2
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Default boot loader

I remember when 98's boot loader was a edited config.sys entry that wasextension .98, at least the first edition, although i still feel 98's boot screen was easiest to change, and in xp it wasnt much harder. Thus why i wont be going over to Vista ever, besides i just got the rest of my family to converge to linux, and they can do everything they need through ubuntu, some actually like the ease of use over M$ windblows.
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Old 01-22-2007, 11:59 PM   #3
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That's one thing I was going to mention, but decided not to. It would be literally easier to explain GRUB to someone than Vistas boot loader. It's just... blah. Why did they do things this way?
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Old 01-23-2007, 08:12 AM   #4
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Very decent little review, altho 2 negative things about vista hardly ever get mentioned (if at all):
first thing would be that it still uses the old ntfs drivers to access such partitions, so in case of a broken ntfs vista, just like xp, is still unable to boot (will give out a BSOD and reboot). Now this problem might only occur to a very little percentage of users (yeah, of course I was one of them), but it still makes you wonder that a free OS such as Linux can easily repair that error while it's impossible to even just boot into vista when a drive with a broken ntfs is attached.
To the second thing: To my knowledge and experience, Vista will not allow to change drive letters of partitions containing an OS, leading to a possible assignment of drive letter D for an XP partition causing the bootloader not to boot XP anymore until u changed it (can occur after cloning the XP HDD and replacing it with the new one). Even after doing so - in XP, the partition will still be assigned to drive letter D and all other partitions on that hdd will get reassigned with new letters causing some registry issues and possible boot errors.
Apart from those 2 things you did a good job with the article.
~D][A
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Old 01-23-2007, 11:06 AM   #5
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Hey Dark][Angel,

I've installed Vista many times and have never run into any of the problems you mentioned. I do recall running into similar issues with XP though. I am sure it will happen to me some day... just a matter of when.

As for the drive letters change, I don't believe this has been a problem for me either. Are you talking about installing XP -after- Vista, or am I misunderstanding? In the past three months, I've re-formatted my computer many times. When I do, I install XP first, followed by a few various installs of Vista. I've never had a problem with the "Earlier Version of Windows" functioning.

As for drive letters changing... maybe that was a Beta 2 only bug? I'm not saying it's not in the final retail version of Vista, but I haven't run into any such problem. Even with XP and 5 Vista installs, if I go into the Vista installer, it will tell me that my XP partition is still C:\.

Like I said though, I am sure I will run into these issues sooner or later. I'm surprised I haven't already.

Thanks for the nice comments
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Old 01-23-2007, 11:29 AM   #6
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Hey Rob,

thanks for the fast reply. I had XP installed for several months before I installed Vista (the retail, not the beta2 nor the RC2). Vista is installed on partition Q here, XP is on C and the Applications are on drive D. I mirrored drives C and D onto another HDD (currently K and L), however, when I unplug the old HDD, the XP partition of the new HDD gets assigned to drive letter D, while the new application part. gets assigned to C. Vista stays as Q when booting into it.
As u can imagine if I boot into XP then, I get quite "some" startup errors since all registry entries are linked to the standard drive letters.
But yeah, I guess not many people will experience that issues, just wanted to through those in since those 2 things can really p*** you off.
Luckily I can consider myself to be experienced enough to know workarounds for most issues, but the standard user would be completely lost if an OS doesn't boot anymore due to a (rather simple) file system error.
~D][A
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Old 01-23-2007, 12:26 PM   #7
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Ahh, I see. You have a rather "bizarre" hard drive set up compared to most people. I don't deal with RAID at all, which is why I've not likely run into any problems.

You reminded me of one thing I do hate with even the XP boot loader though. As far as I know, you need to boot with the install CD to hit up a command prompt in order to fix what it broke. With GRUB in Linux, if there is a problem with an entry you can just hit the E key and edit accordingly.

I still find it amazing that the developers can overlook these strange "bugs". A better boot loader would make things a lot easier in your situation.
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Old 01-25-2007, 06:13 AM   #8
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So your one year old program doesnt work properly on vista?

Honestly, you didnt really have to add that there, of course some programs will have issues with vista. If microsoft had to design total backwards compatibility there would never be progress.
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Old 01-25-2007, 10:08 AM   #9
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Are you referring to the Half-Life 2 not working? The game that Vista itself automatically added a link for?

It's my duty as a writer to inform people about problems. Fact is, there are still many applications that will not work under Vista. People should not be jumping into the new OS assuming everything works, just because it's a "final" release.
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Old 01-25-2007, 10:39 AM   #10
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The fact that it isn't working with a program that's only a year old is what's most disturbing to me. If the problems were with software that was released before Windows XP came out, I wouldn't be as bothered, but I'd hope that M$ would at least include one generation of backwards compatibility, like Apple has always done.
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Old 01-25-2007, 10:42 AM   #11
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Well, they do, it's just not perfect. ACDSee is one program that won't function at all, for example. HD Tach and HD Tune were others that didn't want to run, but the backwards compatibility feature helped it function. There were other programs I ran that ended up crashing though...

Nero Recode is one instance of odd behavior. While the actual process of recoding a video was no problem, Windows gave me a total of 6 Rundll32 errors throughout the entire process. So.. there are still oddities that abound.
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Old 01-25-2007, 02:27 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dark][Angel View Post
Hey Rob,

thanks for the fast reply. I had XP installed for several months before I installed Vista (the retail, not the beta2 nor the RC2). Vista is installed on partition Q here, XP is on C and the Applications are on drive D. I mirrored drives C and D onto another HDD (currently K and L), however, when I unplug the old HDD, the XP partition of the new HDD gets assigned to drive letter D, while the new application part. gets assigned to C. Vista stays as Q when booting into it.
As u can imagine if I boot into XP then, I get quite "some" startup errors since all registry entries are linked to the standard drive letters.
But yeah, I guess not many people will experience that issues, just wanted to through those in since those 2 things can really p*** you off.
Luckily I can consider myself to be experienced enough to know workarounds for most issues, but the standard user would be completely lost if an OS doesn't boot anymore due to a (rather simple) file system error.
~D][A
I have a device from Indus Technologies ,a Canadian company no less which is a harddrive switch. You can switch between 4 different drives and keep them completely seperate. I think this is a better solution then any boot menu. I found having a seperate drive for myself/wife/kids a real blessing. But now that they have their own system, I can have a XP drive / Vista drive / Linux / etc.
This is also great for doing reviews as you can quickly test in different operating systems.

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Old 01-25-2007, 05:33 PM   #13
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At moon111:

Such a device might be neat for "standard" users, but most likely useless for my purposes.
I prefer having full access to all data at anytime, so deactivating an hdd on boot wouldn't be of any use for me (I do have an internal sata backplane tho, connected to an 8port controller, but that ain't bootable).
Besides it only supports PATA devices from what I read, and my current rig only contains SATA HDDs.
As for the usual testing of operating systems I use virtual machines, which, as you might know, are also completely separated from the host OS.
I'm almost sure that the error occurs due to the handling of the "System Volume Information" Folders containing the drive letter assigned by windows. Now this might be fixable by accessing/rewriting it from Knoppix or any other (preferably live) boot OS, but for a product such as Vista, which costs quite a lot of money and gets advertised to be the next-generation OS, I would expect it to be as userfriendly as possible, which ultimately includes an easy-to-use and freely configurable bootloader.
Then again I might have been just unlucky to run into these issues, but at least those show some rather unknown, yet imo important weaknesses of Vista.

~D][A
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Old 01-27-2007, 04:17 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob Williams View Post
You reminded me of one thing I do hate with even the XP boot loader though. As far as I know, you need to boot with the install CD to hit up a command prompt in order to fix what it broke. With GRUB in Linux, if there is a problem with an entry you can just hit the E key and edit accordingly.
You can also install the misnamed "recovery console" once and for all
Insert your XP disk and run the command below (with X as your cd/dvd drive):

X:\i386\winnt32.exe /cmdcons

It will then show up as an option during the boot, where you can usually choose between your different OS.

Regards,
Sensi
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Old 01-27-2007, 04:30 AM   #15
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BTW those who want to edit easily their Vista bootloader (renaming the OSes between others things) should try EasyBCD from within either XP or Vista:

http://neosmart.net/dl.php?id=1

Regards,
Sensi
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