ZOMG! It's Belazor of FuBar_InstancesFu fame! I embarassed that I didn't find yours before I went to all the trouble to write mine. :P GetSavedInstanceInfo(#) bros FTW! And yeah, I'd say at least 80% of our code is display stuff, as there's really not much computation involved.
Okay, it's been said that UAC annoys the "average" user. As I posted earlier in the thread, I see exactly one UAC prompt per session, and it's only because Ventrilo needs full access for push-to-talk to work. Your "average" user isn't installing programs, formatting discs, tweaking the registry and editing group policies in a normal session, are they?
UAC in 7 is broken though, and Microsoft say it's by design. An unprivileged program can disable UAC, provided the user was tricked into installing it (not hard) and was in the Administrators group (as most users are by default). I'd prefer the overzealous UAC in Vista to a completely useless "smart UAC" in 7.
On the subject of the Taskbar versus the Dock, ArsTechnica had a really good write-up on this issue. I personally didn't realise just how different they are until reading this. If anything, I'd say the new Taskbar offers a more consistent experience than the Dock (although the article doesn't favour either).
Filesystems are basically a non-issue really. You'd have to have some really specific workloads to really notice the difference between them. And I thought ext4 was all the rage now. :P
I disagree with Belazor on the subject of compressed settings files. I'd say alot of "average" users have a friend who fixes their computers for them, and plain text configuration files help these friends and thus the average user. I'm not saying let's all abandon the Control Panel and go back to command prompt INI files, but someone who knows what they are doing ought to be able to fix these things easily when the GUI breaks down. Gconf is basically the Windows Registry implemented over plain-text XML files, so it's the best of both worlds.
Well, I did suppose that there was no evil intended.
Has anyone tried to use Vista to copy their Interface folders? Or delete them? On my system (quad-core, 4GB RAM, PCIe graphics, other okay stuff) there are roughly 3000 files in my Interface folder, and it takes Vista almost a minute to copy them to another SATA hard drive, 10 seconds to delete them after. Linux on the same hardware take a quarter of the time.
Thank goodness we aren't in the pre-SP1 days where just moving files seemed to take 5 seconds per file (regardless of the size).
Well, I'm not so sure that some form of DRM isn't active all the time. I read the reasons Microsoft gave for absolutely all file accesses being so much slower than in XP (apparently due to a "smarter" cache system). I'm not convinced this is particularly true.
In Vista, why does it take so long to delete files? Why does moving files to another place on the same partition take so long? Why does copying take so long? Why were they suspiciously able to improve performance in some use-cases, but not others? Why was the hotfix so hard to obtain until SP1?
Do I believe that Microsoft implemented a better IO system that actually performs slower for some reason? I guess that's possible. But the other explanation is that the files are being examined more than necessary. Perhaps there's some secret switch content creators asked for so that they could prevent file-copies at the OS level? Obviously no-one has thrown the switch yet, but I don't think HDCP has been used for anything yet either.
I would very much like someone playing with 7 beta to comment either way on whether or not file transfers are faster, slower, or the same as in Vista. I'm really hoping Microsoft have lifted their game in this respect, because basically everything you do on your computer involves file access.
In Windows 7, user-initiated actions are distinguished from software-initiated actions. If the action is user-initiated (such as clicking a button in Control Panel) then by default, Administrator-level users don't receive any prompting; the action just happens. If, however, the action is software-initiated, a UAC prompt is shown, much like the existing Vista ones.
This reminds me of the hardware event requirements of certain calls in the WoW API. Such a smart idea, and I think this will solve almost all of the anti-UAC sentiment.
Yeah, Cisco hasn't released a 64-bit version of their VPN stuff yet. And I don't think they plan to for a while. And because Microsoft encourage their laziness by releasing 32-bit OSs, this situation has not impetus to change for the better.
Windows 7 should only be 64-bit because even all computers you buy new with Vista are 64-bit, and you aren't going to want to run it on slow 32-bit processors. All Microsoft does with a 32-bit version is hurt the industry, confuse customers and encourage 32-bit laziness among software and hardware vendors. Not good.
UAC is actually a very good feature. The problem is that it comes up more often than it needs to because of bad programming. In the early days of Vista, lots of third-party applications were asking the OS for full permissions when they didn't really need it. This isn't really the case now-a-days.
I have UAC enabled (I've never disabled it, actually), and in a user session when there aren't security updates or WoW patches or anything, I only see one single UAC prompt: Ventrilo needs to run with full permissions for my Push-To-Talk button to work. That's all. And I'd much rather know that a program was about to be escalated than not know.
Obviously, UAC is quite frustrating when doing clean installs (especially across multiple systems simlutaneously), but it gets a bad wrap. Vista and 7 are just trying to be as secure as MacOS and the *Nixes.
Tell me they aren't making a 32-bit version. No-one is going to be running it on a 32-bit system, and all new systems bundled with it are 64-bit. For the love of God they better not be releasing a 32-bit version. That's how they can stagnate the entire IT industry for yet another generation.