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If I Hear One More Piece Of Vista FUD, My Foot’s Gonna End Up In Somebody’s Ass!

It is amazing how many journalists love “discovering” problems with Microsoft, treating the software company like the government, where anything remotely negative is news. At this point, inventing problems qualifies as news, especially if its a sexy fake problem.

Case in point: ExtremeTech (holy crap, get a new name): They have an article where they build a PC that’s “Vista ready”. Their goals are so ridiculous, but people reading the article will think when they reach the end that you really need $2,500 to run Windows Vista. Please!

Among the goals that result in a system far more powerful and expensive than necessary:

  • Windows Experience Score above 5 - Why? My computer is a 3.4 and runs Vista great.
  • Room for growth and “forward looking” - That means that, even if the system is good enough for Vista, they are configuring it even better than that. So, what the hell does this article have to do with Vista?
  • RAID 5 array - Yeah, because 99% of consumers need this. Or know what it is.
  • HD Audio
  • Microphone array - if you need one, great. If not, what a huge waste of money.
  • 1.5 terabytes of storage - again, plenty of people will never fill 200-300 gigs. Even heavy Media Center users don’t need more than 500 gigs, and they would probably use a seperate computer for Media Center (especially if they’ve got $2,500 to burn).
  • HDCP compliant video card - Why is this necessary right now? Buy one when the market requires one.
  • $234 computer case - An excellent reason to buy a Dell instead of building it yourself.

At the end, they drop a bunch of the extra options, like the hard drives, deluxe motherboard, save $285 by slightly dropping CPU speed, and wind up with a much more reasonable $1,667 system that probably still meets every one of the needs listed in the beginning of the article. But no, that won’t be the headline on Slashdot, will it?

My laptop is excellent for Vista. I bought it over a year ago for $900, and have only added RAM since then. Of course, before the coupon, it was $1,600, meaning you have to find a coupon now to get as good a deal. Still, you can get right now a Dell system with four times the RAM I got, a Core Duo, both batteries I got, the TV tuner I got, the DVD burner I got, for just $1,223. And that’s a laptop with a nice 15.4 inch screen.

As far as desktops go, Dell’s got an overkill system (2.66 GHz Core Duo, 250 GB HD, DVD burner, 17-inch LCD, 7.1 channel audio) for $939. Not $2,500, not $1,667, just under a thousand, and it has more than you need to run Vista well.

So, what did ExtremeTech prove? That expensive computers exist? That if you pay too much, you’ve paid too much? That a computer no one will buy, you can buy for a lot of money? Top of the line systems cost a ton of money, regardless of the operating system. The fact is, getting a decent computer is pretty cheap these days, and Vista will not change that for one second. Stop the FUD and get off Microsoft’s back.
(via Mary Jo)

September 13th, 2006 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | General, Windows, Vista | no comments
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