Vista Beta 2

Though Microsoft’s latest Operating System is not out in the final Beta 2 stage, your reps here at NeoSmart Technology are currently testing out a 52XX build, which, unlike the 51XX build series, is a precursor to Beta 2.

NeoSmart Technologies is a proud Microsoft Beta Tester, accepted into more than 25 different programs simultaneously. While we do our best testing and breaking them from Microsoft, we rarely talk about it much, since what we test normally has little immediate impact. But for the last week or so we have been testing Vista 5219, and we have to admit, it is something to behold.

In short, Vista 5219 is the closest Microsoft has ever come to a true out-of-box experience. When you mention out-of-box, most Computer Geeks think Linux, where you literally can install the DVD, and never install a thing again. With Vista, its *almost* the same thing. Especially since if MS packages anymore software, the EU and Supreme Court will never let them here the end of it…… But that’s another story for another time.

First is the Media Center. In a move that most likely eliminates Windows Media Center Edition (no promises however), MS has shipped this test build with Microsoft Media Center, which is the all-in-one portal for a complete entertainment experience. You can play DVDs, listen to MP3s, watch TV and Movies, tune in to the radio, and more; all from one easy to use program, without the jetsam and flotsam of Windows Media Center Edition (MCE).

Wireless Support. Believe it or not, in our test centers of 8-inch concrete walls, Vista has reach. Its weird, because under Microsoft Windows XP, the connection was nil, but in Vista somehow there is software-reinforcement or something like it- a dark secret Microsoft is waiting to unleash on its foes. At any rate, it works, and it works well. Plus Vista ships with more wireless drivers than Windows ever did before.

Of the few ‘drawbacks’, the biggest issue is the complete rewrite of the sound and video system. We personally see no reason why people are getting all worked up about it. Sure, the old drivers don’t work, but don’t you think that in the day and age of digital audio and video, HDTV, and HD-DVDs, we deserve something newer than the same technology used in Microsoft Windows 95??? Soon enough ATi and nVidia will have drivers that take advantage of the new architecture, and we can experience better gaming and video surreal effects, with the same crappy hardware. Microsoft taking a bold step, but they cannot be blamed. If you do not like it, switch to ALSA and pure OpenGL w/out DirectX on Linux.

For Microsoft’s latest endeavor, we have to say, they have outdone themselves, its about time, and we cannot wait for another build to come out.

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