Windows Vista
by: Brian Clarke

August 5, 2005

Windows Vista logoOn July 27, 2005 Microsoft officially named the successor to Windows XP. The operating system formerly known as Windows Codename Longhorn is now Windows Vista.

Windows Vista Beta 1 is now available to MSDN (Microsoft Developer Network) and TechNet subscribers. Beta 2 is due out before the end of this year. That beta will be a public beta, instead of the relatively small Beta 1 release.

Windows Vista ScreenshotAlthough Microsoft would prefer to only release Beta 1 to MSDN and TechNet subscribers, it has been leaked onto the internet. The Vista Beta is now all over BitTorrent. Searches on Limewire only turn up fakes and torrent files.

It is a hefty download at approximately 2.5 GB. That is why it can only be burned onto a DVD. Yes, that’s right, a bootable DVD. It is safe to speculate that once all the features are added to the new OS that it could take up most, if not all of the 4.7 GB capacity of a single layer DVD.

Microsoft says that Beta 1, although reportedly very stable for a beta release, is not intended for general computer use. They say it is mainly meant as a technology preview for developers so that they can give Microsoft feedback and prepare to develop Windows Vista applications. Most applications that run on Windows XP should be able to run on Windows Vista.

The main improvements in Windows Vista include:
• Revamped security architecture
• Better searching and indexing of files
• Further simplification of everyday tasks
Windows Vista Screenshot • Better error recovery, better performance
• Better reliability

Many of the new features have not been finalized, so the details are sparse. There are reportedly plans to include a new control panel icon that will pull together different aspects of the operating system that pertain to laptops and tablet PCs. This includes power management and other mobile-specific features.

The final version of Windows Vista is set for release in the 2006 holiday season. PC’s with Vista preinstalled will be available before you will be able to buy a retail copy. There is no doubt you will know when Windows Vista is released. Microsoft has plans for a massive media blitz, starting this year with their “Start Something PC” campaign.

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Copyright 2006 Brian Clarke. All Rights Reserved.