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Vista Ultimate Giveaway winners speak their minds

Earlier this year we had a little contest where we gave away 3 shiny copies of Vista Ultimate. Our three lucky winners have had some time to bathe in the cooling waters of Vista, and this past week we heard back from two of them: AJ and Shannon. How did they feel about Vista?

AJ wrote:
I must say, that eye candy just added another definition in the form of the snazzy aero effect and other visual goodies. But that's just where the sadness begins for me as I honestly couldn't find anything truly worth a "wow" factor in the functionality of the operating system compared to my MCE 2005. So much so that those totally in-your-face (or shall I say in Microsoft's face) TV commercials where one dude is the Vista and other Apple look like Simon Cowell-ish "brutally honest" 30 second reality shows. I got a kick out of the one where this Matrix-y bodyguard acts out Vista's new "Allow or Deny" function which truly starts treating your every move, pretty much, like you just poked a finger into a bubble boy's shell.

So for me, I give it lightning fast two thumbs down.

Shannon broke it down:
Eye candy-- in my opinion Windows Vista has a great look and feel, everything from the redesigned start button to the sidebar to the glass-like windows of the aero.

Integrated and instant search-- the redesigned start menu offers an instant search that allows you to find applications and files instantly I've found this to be an invaluable addition to windows.

More of Shannon's review after the jump...

Sidebar-- the windows sidebar is a great addition to windows allowing you to always access information about your computer, music, messenger, weather and search, etc.

The redesigned address bar in file explorer is very useful for quick navigation. Microsoft has put all the commonly used folders such as pictures, music, desktop, downloads (which is a nice addition because I do a lot of downloading) etc. inside a folder with the name of the user. This is nicer than the "documents and settings" arrangement in previous versions of windows.

The speech recognition feature is one of the best I've seen. Unlike previous versions that only worked inside of office, this can control your entire computer-- in fact I'm using it to write this review.

Driver support is sadly lacking. Even my iPod does not have a driver, but by installing the driver from the CD and restarting my computer with my iPod plug-in, I was able to get it to sync. But it still comes up with a dialog box wanting me to install a driver.

Windows Vista has too many warning dialogs. To download and install something off the Internet you have to go through about four security dialogs, which seems a little much.

Software compatibility is an issue with some pieces of software although the compatibility setting does work well.

Because I'm using Windows Vista on an older laptop with limited graphics ability some of the features such as media center are slow and choppy.


Windows Vista is the best operating system that Microsoft has put out to date that being said, I don't think I'd recommend for anyone not windows savvy or without time to play around ways the new UI, until Microsoft works out the bugs.

Download Squad would like to thank everyone who entered!

Tags: contest, osupdates, review, vista, vista giveaway, VistaGiveaway, winners