Michael Desmond, writing for PCWorld, wrote this article called Ten Reasons to Buy Windows Vista. Me? I’m completely unconvinced. Let’s walk through what he thinks are the strengths of Windows Vista:
- Security. The funny thing is, I expected all the previous versions of Windows to provide security, and for the most part, I’ve been cruelly let down. There is no bigger indication that Microsoft has fumbled the security ball than to look at the entire industry (with players like Symantec, McAffee, Network Associates, and literally dozens of others) that have sprung up solely to shore up the inadequate defenses of Windows against the attack of hackers.
- Internet Explorer. Yawn, you mean the browser that doesn’t even implement the box model properly, making it virtually impossible to design portable css layouts for webpages? I’ll stick with Firefox, thank you very much.
- Eye candy. Honestly, who cares? Especially since Microsoft thinks its reasonable to force you to upgrade your video hardware to provide this extra ocular saccharine.
- Desktop search. Sorry, tried it, but never really use it.
- Better updates. I’d like it if they didn’t make me reboot everytime I change a network setting. Updates never really bothered me the way they are.
- More media. Too bad they are adding more DRM to keep you from using more media. It kind of balances out.
- Parental controls. More features that only serve to keep me from using the computer. Yawn.
- Better backups. Might be nice. Worth $180 for the upgrade?
- Peer-to-peer collaboration. With other Vista users. Yawn.
- Quick setup. Here’s an idea: how about an operating system that doesn’t force you to reinstall often enough for the hour install to matter?
To be fair, Desmond lists five things that should give us pause:
- Cost. $100. Again.
- No antivirus software, likely to be made available as a paid subscription. If Vista is so secure, why continue to tax us for security updates?
- The upgrade carousel. You might be able to run Vista on your old hardware, but you won’t want to.
- The learning curve. That doesn’t particularly concern me.
- Lots of stuff is just warmed over. Well, yeah.
But the real problem is that Windows just doesn’t deliver very much. With Fedora, I can turn my PC into a document preparation system, a VOIP pbx, a webserver, a database server, a rich program development environment running literally dozens of languages, and dozens of other things. It’s just a better buy for the buck, allowing me to make better use of my available computing hardware.
So, why should I pay for Vista?