I finally have been able to finish downloading build 5472 and put it on my work test machine. Here are some quick thoughts and observations:
- MUCH FASTER. Both in the install and normal functionality. On a AMD 3200 machine, the install took 37 minutes.
- Almost all hardware was detected OOB. The only device that wasn’t installed was the MS Fingerprint Reader that comes with my mouse and I am not brave enough right now to install Digital Persona.
- FINALLY! You can completely hide the Favorite Links and restore the folders to the Navigation Pane. Previously the lack of this feature was what kept me from using Vista with other builds due to the fact that Explorer is completely useless without a full folder pane (accessing network drives was a pain before).
- Vista Basic is nice and it finally is possible to tint the colors, although I prefer the bluish hue currently in Vista Basic compared to the non-aero interface in prior builds.
- Vista Aero works OOB on this machine. I have an integrated ATI Radeon Xpress 200 w/ 256MB video ram and prior builds did not run Aero properly (i.e., full Glass, but no options for transparency or tinting settings never held).
- Vista detected my smartphone (Cingular 8125), but Sync Center doesn’t work (this is an improvement as prior builds refused to detect the 8125).
- Media Center is SLOW!!! I’m not quite sure why, either. XP MCE 2005 runs perfectly on the same hardware config.
- Since when is 2GB of RAM rated as a 2 in Performance Manager?