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Vista related changes needed?

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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Fri 20 Oct 2006 02:20 AM (UTC)
Message
Problems people will run into with MUSHclient on Vista are the Guest account message at launch and the help files not working...

Nothing horrible, just kinda bothersome.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/917607 <- about the help files

(I searched the forum and didn't find a thread, and I'm sure Nick is aware of this stuff, but hey it deserves mentioning anyway.)

I've been using this program for years and years, thanks. :)
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Posted by Nick Gammon   Australia  (21,321 posts)  [Biography] bio   Forum Administrator
Date Reply #1 on Fri 20 Oct 2006 06:07 AM (UTC)
Message
Thanks, I hadn't noticed that. I see from the KB page:

Quote:

Also, third-party programs that include .hlp files are prohibited from redistributing the Windows Help program together with their products.


So, I am not allowed to supply WinHlp32.exe, and nor is it supplied with Vista.

Quote:

Users who want to view 32-bit .hlp files must download the program from the Microsoft Download Center, and then install it on their computers.


Oh well, another change to something that is working perfectly well.

- Nick Gammon

www.gammon.com.au, www.mushclient.com
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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #2 on Fri 20 Oct 2006 06:38 AM (UTC)
Message
Vista changes quite a few things, and some of the changes may seem unnecessary but at the same time supporting legacy code all the time must have been getting tiresome for MS, especially when they have to worry so much about security now.

Also, considering Vista is a major change to the Windows platform in general, supporting old interfaces would probably mean rewriting a lot of code that just isn't very useful anymore.

I'm on RC2 and damn, I'm finally really impressed. Beta 2 still sucked from a usability standpoint, RC1 was good but had limited driver support...which is still true of RC2 in general of course, but my setup works great :)

Still, I expected to be impressed when all was said and done, so hey...

Anyway, just thought you should know, have fun man.
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Posted by Shadowfyr   USA  (1,783 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #3 on Fri 20 Oct 2006 06:51 PM (UTC)
Message
You are too easilly impressed. I made the jump from 98 to XP and was impressed, but had to keep reminding myself that its pointless to be impressed by replacing a bicycle with a 1960's VW Bug... Everything I have read about Vista suggests that its going to be like trading in that 1960's VW for a 2006 SUV. I.e., its impressive, from the standpoint of improvements, but once you look past that you are still looking at something that is bloated, all flash, little true redesign on the inside and scarfs resources like a vacuum cleaner.

Part of the reason for this is "precisely" because MS realized that they couldn't get rid of the old architecture, since there wouldn't be any software for another 5-10 years to run on it (putting them on what would ironically be 180 degree opposite uneven footing with Linux than what they currently have, since some big companies now make Linux versions of their stuff, while MS would be nearly back at square one, with half the vendors scrambling to adjust to the new API). Its why their great .NET *isn't* part of the API, but must be installed seperately, despite all the hype, and why if you want some of the features they promised, you still have to buy third party (if even available) or throw out the OS for one that does support the features.

MS hit a brick wall with Longhorn. Vista is MS tearing down the brick wall to discover that behind that wall is a 100 ton granite boulder. lol

The only good thing... If they had been able and willing to change it to where they could incorporate all the vaporware they promised, help files and Guest account messages would look like mere warning labels on packets of peanuts, compared to what would have stopped working.
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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #4 on Sat 21 Oct 2006 05:35 PM (UTC)
Message
Vista is Longhorn, so that statement made no sense.

I am impressed because for the first time in a really long time, the sound engine, video engine, driver model, and networking engine are all majorly changed. If you think that doesn't constitute a redesign, you're wierd.

The GUI changes may or may not be impressive, but they are better (for the most part) and what's driving the GUI (the DWM) completely changes how Windows draws the GUI, and will make basic usage a lot smoother.

MS doesn't WANT to get rid of compatibility, as then noone would use their OS. But that hardly means they can't change things.

If by vaporware you're talking about the new file system? I say who gives a fuck. It probably would've inconvenienced me more than anything, judging by the probable performance issues with it.

.NET 3.0 includes the new APIs, and even if it isn't installed by default it will come with the OS and the reason the OS doesn't use it is because developing softwre on an unfinished developer platform hardly makes any sense whatsoever.

As for bloated, I really don't give a shit how much resources stuff I have use as long as it uses them for the right reasons. It just doesn't matter to me. It's one thing Linux lovers love to bring up, but we're just in different worlds here. My primary OS is for playing games. I don't really care what else it does or doesn't do as long as it's easy to use (which in several important areas Linux still isn't.)

I'm sure I'll be back :p
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Posted by Shadowfyr   USA  (1,783 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #5 on Sat 21 Oct 2006 06:35 PM (UTC)
Message
No, Vista *is not* Longhorn. Longhorn failed. The head of the development devision literally went to Gates with a big chart that was something like 30 feet long and 5 feet wide (don't remember the exact numbers), told him, "This is what we know about how all the pieces fit together in XP and what its going to look like in Longhorn. Its *not possible* to make it work right with the new features you want added." They scrapped Longhorn and did a rework on significant portions of it, which is how they derived Vista. However, a lot of what was supposed to be in Longhorn will never appear in Vista, since it still has most of the fundimental flaws and dependency issues.

So no, Longhorn and Vista are not the same thing. They are closer than the people developing it would probably like, but they are more close siblings, one of whom had terminal cancer. All the stuff you mention where changed is *why* its called Vista, not Longhorn. Those where all the parts they could redo and stabilize, without a complete rewrite of the OS. Its also not just the file system that is going to be missing, though I don't remember at the moment what all else they had to throw away.

As I said, the problem isn't that it isn't better. The problem is, and MS knows this, Windows, as it exists, is reaching the end of its life cycle. They can't improve it much past where it is now with Vista without radical changes to the OS, which *will* break compatibility. Even their own development staff have admitted as much. This isn't to say its not an improvement, not better then the previous versions, etc., but its literally a dinosaur, which isn't fairing well in a world that requires adaptation to requirements that it can't impliment, so can't compete with.

Seriously though, these two sentences are really funny when taken together:

"If by vaporware you're talking about the new file system? I say who gives a fuck. It probably would've inconvenienced me more than anything, judging by the probable performance issues with it."

"As for bloated, I really don't give a shit how much resources stuff I have use as long as it uses them for the right reasons."

So.. What is the "right" use for resources? More fancy buttons, mattel style graphics and useless crap that makes it look pretty, but doesn't actually do anything? Because more than 90% of the changes they are making are "in" that useless garbage that doesn't in any way shape or form improve what the OS itself "does", just what it looks like. Personally, it pisses me off when I need a new $500 graphics card and twice the memory of the prior OS, just so that I can boot the damn thing, and "all" of it is because of the useless GUI elements they added that won't do anything at all to help me use the machine, but does waste massive ammounts of resources that would have gone, on the older OS, to running "real" graphics applications and games. And its even more insane when in most cases these elements would take "less" resources to produce on a more efficient OS, or could be simply turned off, without effecting the ability to use any of the software.

Oh, and don't even get me started with their plan to sell 5-6 different versions, then make you pay for upgrades when you suddenly realize the new application you installed won't work because X is missing and is only found in the next more expensive version...

But heh, if you are satified with getting the shaft from these people again, getting 80% of the improvements you really don't need at all, just to make things look pretty, having to buy all new hardware (or at least losing much of the existing performance and resources on what you already have), etc. more power to you. Personally the only reason I even got XP was lack of some key software I do use for Linux and having gotten tired of the slow creeping disease that infected 98 and which slowly ate away at it like some sort of strange necrosis, which was only solvable by radical transplant once a year...
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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #6 on Sat 21 Oct 2006 07:05 PM (UTC)

Amended on Sat 21 Oct 2006 11:36 PM (UTC) by Seawolf

Message
Windows Longhorn is a codename. Much like Whistler was for XP, Longhorn is for Vista. Therefore, you're just making stuff up. It's the same product, whether or not it's changed along the line.

I have a graphics card that was $150 when I bought it a year ago, and it runs Vista fine. And I don't need a power supply or CPU upgrade either. Vista rates my system 3.7, and it'd be 4.3 if I had better than an ath64 2800+.

I plan to upgrade my components somewhere along the line, but not right now. It isn't needed. (For games, however...depends when I get decent pay, I'd definately update my vidcard.)

What do I care what the graphics look like on the GUI? Sure, they're improved. But they don't use any more CPU resources, just the vidcard...that's what pixel shaders are for.

Different tiers? Well, it is Microsoft. They want to make money. Go figure. Some people won't care for all the extra stuff that Ultimate offers, some won't even care for all the extra stuff Premium offers. And for those people, that works great, because it'd just be more shit on their puter they never use, so they won't have to pay for it. Tiers do make sense, even if they annoy those of us who buy high end. As for the business tiers, I don't really care.

What's the right way to use resources? A better user experience. Is there a better way?

Windows really isn't reaching the end of its lifecycle anytime soon. There is at least one more version after Vista that will take the same type of path, even if they change the inner workings considerably. I would expect more than one, but I couldn't say how things are going to go.
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Posted by Shadowfyr   USA  (1,783 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #7 on Sun 22 Oct 2006 07:08 PM (UTC)
Message
Sigh.. I have been reading up on the fiasco going on with Longhorn and what finally ended up in Vista. You could be right about the name, but you are wrong about Longhorn. It was a dead end, still is a dead end, even if its now Vista and will continue to be a dead end. Its quite clear from reading internal memos and other info about it that the internals are so broken, so heavilly interconnected and so highly dependent on the current structure of the OS that nothing short of a complete redesign will ever fix it. Its why it has taken them 10 years to put out a 3 year update.

As for better use of resources.. I would tend to agree with the idea that a better user experience is a great thing to put some into, however... Two problems. The first is that MS has a consistently strange idea what "better user experience" means. Their idea of a better experience is not to provide good help files, easy to use menus for setting up advanced changes or otherwise making the experience easy for "everyone". Their idea of a good experience is to ignore the 10% of the people that have to install, configure and maintain the OS for other people, so that the other 90% who can't program their own VCRs don't need to know anything about how the damn thing works. Fine, as far as that goes, but its total BS when you are one of those 10% and you find it nearly impossible to do anything without buying a dozen books at $50 a pop to explain what you are missing in the help files, and then find out it often can't be changed anyway.

As for tiered OS versions.. I think they are going to shoot themselves in the foot on that one. This is especially true is someone else, like Ubuntu where to come along and set up something in their installer scripts that let you auto-configure for the type of business you have. It would be real simple, just include in the default install scripts the same components MS thinks are great for each "tier" and let the user pick which one fits. lol Personally, I *know* that there are bound to be things in one version that won't work, simply because some OSS or shareware app I want to use depends on component X, which is only found in the next higher priced version. They are almost certainly "expecting" mistakes and to profit at the expense of people that start out *not* needing features, only to find that the next thing they stick on the machine does require it. I think its sneaky and underhanded, especially given that it already happened on occation with XP Home vs. Pro on occation, but no where near as bad.

But we can argue this for days. The fact remains that even Windows advocates in many cases are looking suspiciously at this thing and taking a second look at alternatives.

Still, nice to know that the expected "optimal" requirements for it are not as completely insane as everyone expected, but I bet the processor temp gets to 105+ when running it with all that fancy video (about what it hits when running a Direct 3D screensaver), where mine runs at a nice cool 95-96 under normal conditions. lol
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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #8 on Sun 22 Oct 2006 09:37 PM (UTC)
Message
Honestly, I don't know where you get your info.

But here's a good place to start. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_vista

Most of the time, those people that won't install Windows are happy to have it that way. They don't want to set anything up because all they want to do is load web pages, print, and play card games. Whee. There's little complicated about it, unless it's a upgrade install, except that they wouldn't know where to start getting drivers and updated apps that work right.

The help files are definately improved, and connect to the net to get updated info on their own. But I see nothing in XP I ever needed to buy a book for on tech support, and I've used every MS OS except ME (and Bob, if you can call it one) since 3.1.

If anything expects a higher version for some stupid reason, the end-users will be able to upgrade their OS on the fly anyway. The upgrade capabilities are built in. Personally, I never once needed XP Pro, and I highly doubt anyone had issues with that except possibly on a laptop that they brought in to work. Of course, most notebooks I ever saw used Pro anyway.

And as far as Ubuntu, while they certainly could do such a thing, is a random user going to say alright, that free OS is suddenly just as free, lets switch? I doubt it. People stick with what they know, usually.

Anyway, I'm going to be on the road for six hours or so. Here's another good wiki http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Features_new_to_Windows_Vista
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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #9 on Sun 22 Oct 2006 09:41 PM (UTC)
Message
Oh, and I just looked around at features dropped from Longhorn. If you're including the updated scripting shell (Monad) that was going to be included, it's still available, and called Windows PowerShell. It's at RC2 and available at http://www.microsoft.com/technet/scriptcenter/topics/msh/download.mspx

I know there were a few more, but I'm going to have to cut this short.
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Posted by David Haley   USA  (3,881 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #10 on Sun 22 Oct 2006 11:41 PM (UTC)
Message
I'm also curious what features you needed to get a book for. I've also used nearly every version of Windows since its DOS days, except notably ME which I never wanted anything to do with. I'm a "power-user" and did all kinds of customizations to the interface, but never once needed a book (or even a help file, really). Now I didn't mess around with writing my own ActiveX or COM components, mainly because I never felt the need to. However the people who do that are in such a vast minority (much less than the 10% figure you give) that I think it makes perfect business sense for Microsoft to not worry about them too much.

Frankly, if you want such complete control over your computer, you probably should be using something like Linux anyhow. Windows isn't supposed to do that. (Nor is Mac for that matter, but OS X being based on Unix has somewhat changed what you can do in terms of deep-diving changes.)

David Haley aka Ksilyan
Head Programmer,
Legends of the Darkstone

http://david.the-haleys.org
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Posted by Shadowfyr   USA  (1,783 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #11 on Tue 24 Oct 2006 02:00 AM (UTC)
Message
Yes. To be perfectly fair, if you a) don't mind buying pe-existing and often over priced solutions to every problem you need to solve and b) you don't mind doing everything MS' way, you'll probably be OK with XP and better off than that even with Vista. The problem is imho, if 99% of your user base is using VBScript to much around with web pages, since there is no other way for the basic, "I don't want to spend $300 for a compiler, and what is that anyway?", user, most of the stuff that ends up out there from those people is going to either not exist, since you can't do it anyway without the limits provided, or complete crap. Take literally *any* Windows base Kiosk system, even the ones developed for major companies like Safeway, where I am currently working, and I will show you something that is broken 20% of the time, because its "not" written by someone that actually knows why it breaks in the first place.

I guess I am just way to picky. I might, almost all of the time, be willing to put up with the boneheadedly insane limitations the OS imposses, often for not entirely clear reasons, or to provide "fast" security, instead of "robust and truly safe" security, but some times I want to get into the guts and do something. When I do, its inevitably about money, money and more money, after which I still have to spend more money, because nothing I bought to solve the problem provides complete examples or working explainations that can be understood by someone who isn't either using the books as texts for a class where someone that "does" know it already has a clue what is going on, or there is yet one more missing piece that they didn't document in the last five books I bought (nor in the compiler suite that is supposed to help me do it). So, yes. I am one of those people that isn't in the majority. I am merely a hobbyist, but most of the people in the same category are what are called "developers", and I know of few developers, including many from **inside** Microsoft that like the mess they have to crawl through to do anything with Windows. Vista probably isn't goint to change that.

I am looking at it from an engineering view point, not a pure user. To me, Windows is almost proof that one doesn't need intelligent design for operating systems, never mind genetics. A lot of professional programmers agree with that assessment, and most of them *are* coding Windows applications.

Oh, one good example.. Back in 3.11 or so Excel was developed to hard code 4 sundays into each month, in order to properly import Lotus files. Everything in Windows up to and including SP 2 for Microsoft Exchange has continued to perpetuate this glitch, including the newest XML document standard they released for document exchanges. As a result, as far as some critical office applications in Windows are concerned, next Sunday doesn't exist... This same problem with appear agains in three other years, though the only one I can remember at the moment that they mentioned was 2011. Oh, and since VBScript was developed originally to only be used in Excel, its own date functions apparently contain the same defect. Makes you wonder what other interesting little gems are hidden in the OS from the dark ages of the system. lol But, it does explain why things can go spectacularly wrong for no reason sometimes. ;)
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Posted by David Haley   USA  (3,881 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #12 on Tue 24 Oct 2006 04:08 AM (UTC)
Message
I guess that my experience is simply diametrically opposed to yours. I'm also not sure we're even having the same conversation. You appear to be talking about a developer who is trying to do something deep down in the Windows API, which is not what I was talking about, nor Seawolf, if I may put words in his mouth.

David Haley aka Ksilyan
Head Programmer,
Legends of the Darkstone

http://david.the-haleys.org
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Posted by Seawolf   USA  (57 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #13 on Tue 24 Oct 2006 06:48 AM (UTC)
Message
I know plenty of linux fanatics. They love to ramble about random things that nobody was actually talking about.

I'm even friends with a few, God help me. ;)

But don't put things in my mouth, that's just gross.

(grin)

Seriously, everyone has different reasons for their likes and dislikes, and I respect that. I just get bothered when people don't have their facts straight.
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Posted by David Haley   USA  (3,881 posts)  [Biography] bio
Date Reply #14 on Tue 24 Oct 2006 07:17 AM (UTC)
Message
Ironically enough, I transitioned the bulk of my work from Windows to Linux a short while ago. I find that Windows is actually much better for some things. For example, I should not need to restart the X server to change the number of buttons on my mouse; it should be much easier to change between one & two monitors enabled. But that's neither here nor there...

My main reason for using Linux is that I spend a great deal of time in Cygwin when under Windows, so I might as well harness that power completely under Linux. The Windows GUI (i.e. Explorer shell) is a wee bit too simple for me -- I was using Litestep to enhance that. Also, lots of open-source software is very Linux-centric, and running Linux makes it easier to use that software. I'm not fundamentally displeased with Windows, there were just several practical reasons to use Linux instead.

David Haley aka Ksilyan
Head Programmer,
Legends of the Darkstone

http://david.the-haleys.org
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