I recently loaded Vista on my laptop. I figured since I was sleeping with Windows anyway I might as well do it with the latest version. Below is what my desktop looks like.
From an interface perspective, not much has changed from XP except for the Aero Glass eye candy. And to tell you the truth I’m a little disappointed on that score. I don’t know what I expected exactly, maybe that rotating cube desktop switcher thingy like beryl can do, lots more 3-D effects and transparency everywhere. But no. There is transparency (translucency is better) in the title bar and around the edges of the windows. Windows do some subtle twisty thing on open and close and there is a lame sideways thing to switch between open windows and that’s about it.
In short this is nothing you haven’t been able to do for a long time in Linux and beryl blows Aero out of the water in terms of effects. But really, do you need all that? This is a nice looking desktop on its own terms, every bit as pretty as Apple.
So what else do I like? Well I like the file structure. The root file structure has Program Files, Users and Windows sub directories in it. I can get my mind around what’s in those directories. Under Users there are (surprise) user directories and a Public directory for shares. I like it.
I like User Account Control (although I’m probably the only person in the world who does). I run as a standard user and have a separate administrator account. I’m not prompted any more for my administrator password than I need root to do things on Linux. If I install a program, run apt-get update, or edit config files in /etc I need root privileges on Linux. If I install applications, edit the registry, or run windows update I need administrator privileges on Vista. No problem.
As I get to know Vista some more, I’ll be writing about what I learn. But so far I like it better than XP, which I know is damning it with faint praise, but its a start.