Top Windows 7 Features That Vista Should Have Had

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This week may be as big a week in the company's history as Microsoft has ever had. We know, that's a pretty bold statement, but there's a lot of evidence to back that up. Microsoft has been drowning in negative press and negative vibes for most of Vista's life; it has tried for years to spit-shine the image of its "Wow!-inducing" operating system, and by and large, it has failed.



In order to really understand the importance of Windows 7, we've got to go back in time a bit and take the whole of Microsoft's work into account. For those of you old enough to remember Y2K and that underground bunker you built in order to stay safe, you're probably old enough to remember Windows ME. It's almost impossible to argue that ME was Microsoft's biggest gaffe in terms of operating systems; ME barely lasted on the market, and Windows XP ushered in what the company's real next generation OS should've been. It was a monumental leap from Windows 98; driver issues suddenly vanished (for the most part), productivity shot up and consumers/corporations alike flocked to upgrade.


Windows ME: "Oh, The Horror!"

Windows XP lived a good, long life, and with only a few exceptions, the press and consumers alike seemed to love it. Microsoft was riding high, and it only expected to ride even higher than the launch of Vista. The company spent inordinate amounts of money promoting it in every nook and crannie it could find, and the whole world was soon under the impression that the "Wow!" was for real. Microsoft encouraged us all to set our expectations high, and we did. The world did. But when Vista launched, folks were baffled--the wow that was promised was nowhere to be found, or if it was found, it was watered-down. Vista felt like Windows XP, only with more glossy and system requirements that were downright painful at first. Upgrading older machines was a challenge, and many simply couldn't handle the stress of Vista. Look at the modern day netbook, for example. Netbooks weren't even a sector when Vista arrived, and yet all netbooks today ship with either Linux or Windows XP, because manufacturers know that Vista is too resource intensive.


Windows XP: "Old Faithful"

Honestly, Windows 7 would have to do little more than "be the Vista that Vista should have been" in order to receive praise, but Microsoft made sure to do more than that. Windows 7 reminds us a lot of Windows XP in terms of what was anticipated compared to what was/is being delivered. We won't go so far as to say that Vista is the ME of the modern day, but it's close.


Windows Vista: "What Could've Been..."

Join us on the next page to see the ten greatest features of Windows 7 that should've been in Vista, and learn how those ten features will make your life that much better if you're currently pondering the upgrade.

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11. XP mode?! Big Smile

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XP Mode that doesn't demand higher cost VT support... as 98% Netbooks don't offer VT! Making it 100% impossible to run legacy software as a Microsoft paid solution!

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The new things in Windows 7 search is good but they left out things in XP that was good.

For example, lets say you plug in an external harddrive and quickly want to search for all music (whether its wma, mp3 etc.) or even pictures as well. It takes you just a few click on XP as you can actually choose what type of media you want. In Windows 7 you have to write down the extensions down yourself. Once you know the commands it's okay but your average person won't know that. The average person wants fields to fill in their quiery.  Lets take mp3s as example again. Lets say someone wants to (linear) search all mp3s that are between 3 and 5 MB, simple in XP? Yes, simple in Windows 7? No. It has predefined sizes and I can't figure out how to enter my own. Also if you want many things that little search box is pretty small.

Just know I was trying to make a search inside the first search results and I couldn't figure it out. I'm no Guru but I'm an expert in comparison to the average Joe. How are they supposed to figure it out?

So to finalize what I'm trying to say: the little search box is okay, it's nice that it's always there for the small searches. But to make queries more specific it's not user friendly. There should also be a Search window like in XP with many many many fields that are very user friendly. In today's age where you have lots of information and not all of it is indexed, being able to make complex queries should easy. And not only do we have lots of information but we also have old information that we can't remember are located. A perfect example is an old laptop from which you took out the hard-drive that has some needed files.

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I still can't stand the photo import mechanism in Vista. It's either all or nothing. I'll often have photos from multiple "shoots" or occasions on the same memory card. Vista won't let me give them a name that goes with the shoot unless I DL the card immediately after each use. XP was way friendlier in this regard. I could import photos 1-25 with one serialized file name to one directory, and then files 26-60 to another directory with another serialized file name. The Vista method makes no sense at all.

 

That said, I do like Vista as a whole much better than XP, and am looking forward to Win7 after spending some time playing with the RC.  I just wish they'd gotten a couple more of the little things right.

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Everytime I see multi-touch used, it's just for pinch & zoom operations.  Like the demo video showed for HH in the browser.

Do this (in Firefox):  hold down your control key, and use your mouse scroll wheel.  Congrats - you just saved yourself from putting fingerprint smudges all over your monitor.

None of these features strikes a chord with me...  They've all been present in Compiz for a long time.  Where's the MS "innovation"?

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@3vi1: Innovation? The whole company started off by rebranding Quick&DirtyDOS into PC-DOS and selling it to IBM. In '84 they ridiculed the idea of needing a graphical user interface with a pointing device. MS has had moments of ingenuity, but mostly they've been followers instead of leaders.

Having suffered Vista Hell for years, I appreciate 7's improvements. There are a few features that Windows 7 is still missing, though.

  1. Stability, or at least, better crash recovery. I leave my computer on so that I can run F@H. Of course, I have the monitor set to dim after 20 minutes. Groovy, but lately I've been returning to see that "Windows has encountered a serious problem" dialog, which says that I had a BSOD (wasn't that supposed to have been fixed in Vista?). Unfortunately, the monitor stays active, and I can't tell how long it's been glaring into nothingness. In the meantime, no folding is going on because
  2. Startup is messedup. There are several executables in my Startup list which should launch at boot time but don't, so I have to manually launch each one (and click on that User Account Control (UAC) window, despite having told 7 that the program should be run with Administrator privileges). I know it's not hard to launch a program, but why, with a computer, should I have to do this routine task manually? Oh, and theres still too much UAC in the system. Yes, I do want to run that program I just double-clicked, Mr. Windows, thank you very much.
  3. Consistency. Often when I unplug a flash drive (using "Eject" from its contextual menu first, natch) and then replug it, all of the folder properties are lost. I have to go to Properties for each one and tell 7 again that this is a video folder, this one has pictures, etc.

Yes, I'm getting the OEM version to replace the Release To Master (RTM) that Microsoft let us download in September. Sure, it lacks tech support, but since I can't remember a single instance of Microsoft tech support being useful, I'll miss it like I missed the third nipple they surgically removed when I was born. And perhaps with more modern hardware, some of the crashing will go away. But I'm going into this not saying "wow," but saying "huh, that's slightly better than the previous version."

Maybe that's what MS was shooting for.

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Clem, Microsoft has had a knack for being in the right place at the right time. But to have such a large computer software company in today's age is an anomaly. How has Microsoft managed to retain its main and most successful source of income (Windows + Windows based products)? With computer programming being taught in high schools, you'd think someone would have created decent competition for Microsoft by now.

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>> you'd think someone would have created decent competition for Microsoft by now

They have, but it doesn't come pre-installed on your new PC from BestBuy, so no one tries it.  Since no one tries it, the major software companies (i.e. game makers) ignore it, so the people selling PCs don't pre-install it.  And the vicious cycle continues.

Also, when you have someone like Steve Ballmer spreading FUD by saying this OS violates over 228 Microsoft patents (based on his misunderstanding of a PUBPAT report) and refusing to name any of the patents, it scares companies away from depending on it.  Unless said company owns as many combative patents as IBM, who recently went to a completely Windows-free desktop internally.

Windows is not the king because it's the best OS, it's the king because it got the majority share first, and has the most cutthroat management money can buy.

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if you bought Vista, Steaming, Smelly, Vista, then Win-7 should be free or close to free for you. They should have worn masks when they introduced Vista to the world.

Win-7 is a good OS.

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That reminds me...  did they get around to fixing this in the final release so that it says 7.0 instead of letting people know that internally it's Vista-point-one?

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