"Beta, Might as well be pre-beta!"2.5 starson by callaghan001
Pros: Looks good, A few handy features
Cons: Very power hungry, Tech specs are huge
Summary: I downloaded Vista Beta 2 last week and installed it on my desktop (2.8ghz P4 HT, 1gb RAM, 120gb HD, DVD Burner etc) and on my laptop (centrino 1.7ghz, 512mb RAM 60gb HD etc). My laptop, while it did start windows, failed misirably. Windows was so slow it was pointless and I'm back on Xp already. 512mb just cannot support Vista.
My desktop faired a little better, but I had to upgrade my RAM to 1.5gb to speed up to machine to "normal".
The first thing I noticed was that Vista include Media centre as standard in the ultimate version so I tried to connect my xbox as an extender for my pc. Big mistake. I got a message on my xbox that "this discs region is incorrect for this console. please go to www.xbox.com/support for more information". Following this my PC, which was supposed to be connecting to my xbox, crashed needing a restart.
I know I'm listing all the problems I found with vista but unfortunately their the biggest thing about the OS. The audio in the system is worse than crap. I installed itunes only to find that Vista would not let the icons be placed on the desktop properly , a security issue, go figure!. Anyway, the audio, when playing audio on either itunes or WMP there is an annoying clicking behind the music that is really noticable on a system with a sub woofer.
Once you get past these and a few more problems with vista its actually a good OS. It runs very well with Office 2007 and also with all the included programmes.
Games are a bit iffy. Battlefield 2 would not run properly for me at all no matter what i did.
Another piece of advice i would give is do not install this version on your laptop! It will eat your battery as the gfx demands are huge, my bat went from 3.9 hrs in XP to 1.2 with Vista, and the machine gets really hot.
I would recommend getting vista purely for interest purposes but only install it on a machine that is good enough to run it and with no important files on it. While the tech specs on microsoft .com list 512 RAM, i personally would not install it on a mchine with less than 1.5 and at least 2.8ghz. It will eat your resources.