Monthly Archives: May 2006

Windows Vista Public Newsgroups!

Here is a list of available newsgroups for Windows Vista as of today:

If you want to access the web based version of these newsgroups, click HERE

Head on over to the following page at Microsoft’s website on how toconfigure your newsreader to read Microsoft’s Public Newsgroups:


Filed under Vista Tips & Tricks

Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor BETA

"The Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor is a small beta application that you can run on your current Windows XP-based computer to find out if it’s ready for an upgrade to Windows Vista. When you run the Upgrade Advisor, it will scan your computer and generate an easy-to-understand report of any known system and device compatibility issues, along with recommendations on how you can get your PC ready for Windows Vista. Microsoft plans to add functionality to Upgrade Advisor, such as checking how your software applications will run with Windows Vista. Download the beta version today and check this site in a few months for a new version.

Before You Begin

Before you begin the process of finding out if your PC is ready for Windows Vista, please be sure to plug in any USB or other attachable peripheral devices (such as printers, external hard drives, or scanners) that are regularly used with the PC you’re evaluating.


Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor beta

Thanks to Brandon Leblanc for the tip!

Leave a comment

Filed under Vista Tips & Tricks

Windows Vista System Requirements Now Available

What is a Windows Vista Capable PC?

A new PC that carries the Windows Vista Capable PC logo can run Windows Vista. All editions of Windows Vista will deliver core experiences such as innovations in organizing and finding information, security, and reliability. All Windows Vista Capable PCs will run these core experiences at a minimum. Some features available in the premium editions of Windows Vista—like the new Windows Aero user experience—may require advanced or additional hardware.

A Windows Vista Capable PC includes at least:

  • A modern processor (at least 800MHz1).
  • 512 MB of system memory.
  • A graphics processor that is DirectX 9 capable.

Windows Vista Premium Ready PCs
To get an even better Windows Vista experience, including the Windows Aero user experience, ask for a Capable PC that is designated Premium Ready, or choose a PC that meets or exceeds the Premium Ready requirements described below. Features available in specific premium editions of Windows Vista, such as the ability to watch and record live TV, may require additional hardware.

A Windows Vista Premium Ready PC includes at least:

  • 1 GHz 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor1.
  • 1 GB of system memory.
  • A graphics processor that runs Windows Aero2.
  • 128 MB of graphics memory.
  • 40 GB of hard drive capacity with 15 GB free space.
  • DVD-ROM Drive3.
  • Audio output capability.
  • Internet access capability.

You can read all of the Windows Vista Capable footnotes here.
You can review the Windows Vista Minimum Supported System Requirements here.

Learn more HERE


Filed under Vista Tips & Tricks

Microsoft to Offer Vista Specs, Hardware Guidelines

From eWeek
"Microsoft wants PC owners to be ready for Vista.

To that end, the software giant will unveil May 18 a campaign designed to help people ensure their PCs can run the forthcoming operating system.

The effort, which comes ahead of the annual WinHec (Windows Hardware Engineering Conference) that in 2006 kicks off in Seattle on May 22, will include the unveiling of a Get Ready Web site, which play host to an application that can assess PCs’ readiness for the OS upgrade.

Microsoft will also unveil of a set of minimum PC hardware specifications for systems being upgraded—some of which call for 1GHz processors and 1GB of memory allotments for certain machines—persons familiar with the plan said."

Read the rest here 

I recently did a minor upgrade to my 64-bit system, installed a 2 year old nVidia Geforce FX 5200 128 MB AGP card and what a difference did it make when it came to using Windows Vista build 5381.1? I got Glass, got back all of my physical memory which was being used as shared memory (64 MBs) for the graphics. The install was very easy, opened up the case, inserted the card in the brown AGP slot, closed the case and I was good to go. I had downloaded the April 87.45 drivers for Vista x64 from nVidia’s website though, since the native ones that came with Vista are quite crappy. But, the upgrade is very minor and I was able to to get all the richness that was available in the OS on a very cheap system.

AMD Sempron 2600 – 1.6 GHz
512 MBs of DDR Memory
nVidia Geforce FX 5200 128 MB AGP
20 GB Partition

Vista was running just fine before, just that it was butt ugly without Glass and I knew I had to do something about it. Persons have reported though running Vista on 800 MHz systems, with Glass, but of course, they have a good GPU. So, ultimately, its really is up to users to decide if they want features over eye candy. For many users when it comes to Windows Vista and there are a lot of features in Vista that will justify the cost of upgrading for both businesses and consumers. The question is, how will Microsoft communicate that effectively to the different audiences, espcially with a lot of Vista features being made available for XP like Internet Explorer 7, Windows Media Player 11, Windows Defender and rumors that the Windows Sidebar might also be coming for XP and lets not forget the platform tools such as Windows Presentation and Communication Foundation and a BETA 1 Refresh of Windows Future Storage (WinFS) also available for XP. Vista definitely has its challenges ahead.


Filed under Windows Vista

VistaBootPRO 1.0 for Windows Vista

VistaBootPRO is the first tweak-ware to be released for Windows Vista, but it’s more than just that. When Microsoft first announced that they would not be providing anything easier than bcdedit.exe (a CLI-only tool with nested options and embedded tags) for the modification of the boot loader, we knew something had to be done, and now we’re proud to announce that together with PROnetworks and months of hard work, planning, desiging, and researching have come to test with the initial release of VistaBootPRO.
Download here:
I have been using this to edit and clean up my Windows Boot Manager and its been such a lifesaver, its graphical and you are gonna love it. Spread the news everyone. Thanks Computer Guru for developing this wonderful utility! 🙂


Filed under Vista Tips & Tricks

Microsoft Announces Spectacular Windows Vista Title Lineup

"LOS ANGELES — May 9, 2006 — Today at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3), Microsoft Corp. and top publishers worldwide unveiled the highly anticipated games lineup for the Microsoft® Windows® and Windows Vista™ operating systems. Microsoft also announced plans to bring the Xbox Live® game and entertainment network to the Windows platform.

Microsoft Game Studios and other leading publishers, including Electronic Arts Inc., NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc., THQ Inc. and Funcom, will provide groundbreaking gameplay experiences for Windows Vista gamers across numerous genres, including role-playing games (RPGs), first-person shooter (FPS), real-time strategy (RTS), massively multiplayer online (MMO) and simulation.

Read the rest here

Not a gamer, so this is the least interesting part of Vista for me. Sorry, its just the truth.


Filed under Windows Vista

JAVA, Windows Vista, AERO Glass

I downloaded the beta 2 copy of Java Mustang which enables Glass support in certain Java based applications. I don’t know if you have experienced this, when you open an app built around Java, it turns off DWM. With Mustang it does not and the app blends in beautifully.
I am running this on the latest build of Windows Vista 5381.1


Filed under Vista Tips & Tricks

Report: Vista to hit anti-spyware, firewall markets

"New security features in Windows Vista will largely eliminate the need to run separate antispyware or firewall software, according to a new analyst report.

Due out early next year, the next major release of Microsoft’s flagship operating system promises not only to increase security for consumers, it will also dramatically affect the $3.6 billion market for Windows security products, according to a Yankee Group report scheduled to be published Monday.

"Yankee Group expects Vista to significantly shrink the aftermarket for antispyware and desktop firewalls," analyst Andrew Jaquith wrote in the report. Additionally, Microsoft’s first new operating system release in five years may reduce the need for disk encryption, device control and certain types of host intrusion-prevention software, Jaquith wrote.

Read the rest here

I agree 100% that UAC (User Access Control) or UAP (User Account Protection) is annoying. I don’t know what the Windows Team has in store for beta 2, but I do hope to see some changes to how the program works, too many built in components in the OS are requiring approval. Its protecting users from themselves really, which is conflicting, for a novice, this is really a great feature. The visual effects have gotten even more drastic with UAP in the most recent builds. It actually darkens the screen to put emphasis on the UAP dialog. I really hope I get to see a more smoother and less intrusive experience with UAP in BETA 2.

I am running 5381.1, released last Friday, its getting really better, drivers came down automatically for my Intel Half duplex modem, before I had the driver, the modem was causing a nasty BSOD on shutdown, that has finally been taken care of. The only issue right now is my USB Modem Cel phone is still not compatible (Motorola E398), Mobile Phone Tools crashes when trying to install the phone, driver failure when trying to Vista tries to install it. Overall, its good update, I can’t wait to see what BETA 2 brings to the table. 🙂


Filed under Windows Vista

Through the Looking Glass

"A couple of months ago, I posted screenshots of the visual appearance of the Office 2007 Beta 1 Technical Refresh.

At the time, a number of you asked for pictures of what Office 2007 looks like on Windows Vista with glass enabled.

Your wish, my command. Here are a few pictures of what Beta 2 will look like running on a recent pre-Beta 2 build of Windows Vista. Note that you need a fairly recent build of Vista in order for glass to be enabled in Office.

Read the rest here

I don’t know what usability studies said to use so much dark colours in the UI, but I feel uncomfortable with it. Why not replace the black/grey canvas with a blurred translucent canvas?

My understanding is the purpose of Glass was to put emphasis on the important elements of the interface, and I think the Translucent canvas would help emphasize that.

I created a concept of the UI I would like to see, it still uses the dark colours in a more subtle and attractive way that utilizes the Windows Presentation Foundation, emphasizing the important elements of the UI which the document page and the toolbars.

Check out the concept image here


Filed under Windows Vista

RSA: Microsoft to shelve token support in Vista

"Microsoft has shelved plans to include built-in support for RSA Security’s tokens in Windows Vista, even though the company has been testing out the authentication technology for almost two years.

In February 2004, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said that Windows would be able to support easy integration with RSA’s popular SecurID tokens. That meant businesses would find it far easier to deploy a two-factor authentication system for logging on to networks and applications.

However, almost two years after the SecurID beta-testing program kicked off, RSA’s chief executive, Art Coviello, disclosed that Windows Vista will not natively support the technology.

"Microsoft had said they would include the ability to support all kinds of One Time Password (OTP) and challenge-response type authentication in Vista. But they were unable to get it in with all the other issues they have had, so it is going to take longer," Coviello said in an interview on Tuesday morning in Sydney."

Read the rest here

Well, I just posted that Vista might be delayed again, well here is some proof that Vista will be on time.


Filed under Windows Vista