Microsoft debuts safer and easier operating system

By Jessica Chesko
February 22, 2007

Eric Povish

Windows Vista is the newest computer operating system by Microsoft. Released at the end of January, it is their first upgrade since Windows XP, which was released over five years ago.

Vista’s development began long before its recent debut. Microsoft began its work on Vista back in 2001, even before the release of Windows XP. Vista was originally scheduled to be released in late 2003, but many of its developers were set on improving its security.

Now that Vista is officially released for purchase, it seems as though there is a frenzy of questions like “to upgrade or not to upgrade?” So here is the lowdown on Vista. According to, Vista is easier, more entertaining, better connected and safer.

How is Vista easier?

According to Microsoft, Windows now has an instant search that allows you to find programs, documents, photos, songs and e-mails much quicker. It allows for better photo and video organization with its new photo gallery. Vista also includes Internet Explorer 7 (which allows the user to view multiple web pages simultaneously) and Microsoft Office 2007.

How is Vista more entertaining?

Windows Media Center allows the user to browse music by cover art, watch and record television shows, download movies and project home videos. Windows Media Center is equipped with a remote control so the user can easily access their media from the couch.

How is Vista better connected?

Vista has the option to use the new Network and Sharing Center to establish a wireless home network. This gives users the ability to use their computer anywhere in the house. Windows Meeting Space is a program that helps users collaborate better for business or pleasure. Users are now able to easily share desktops or other programs. Vista also makes it easier to stay connected with mobile phones.

How is Vista safer?

Microsoft stated, “Windows Vista works in the background to take care of itself, giving you a better and faster computing experience.”

Vista is equipped with new Defender technologies that will work to minimize pop-ups, slow performance and security threats like spyware.

“Vista is good-in some respects very good-but not spectacular,” said PC Magazine. “Call it a nice-to-have product rather than a must-have.” PC Magazine continues by saying that anyone looking to buy a new computer should get Vista but they shouldn’t race to upgrade if their XP is running fine. PC Magazine also recommends waiting a few months until all of Vista’s kinks are worked out.

“The new software is very functional and really easy to use,” Jessica Nunez, a spokesperson for CompUSA, said. Nunez said that her favorite aspects of Vista are the new media center and Microsoft Office 2007.

Anyone interested in upgrading to Vista should do their research to be sure Vista is compatible with their current computer. One store that is ready and trained in dealing with Vista is CompUSA. Nunez explained that they offer several programs to help their customers with Vista.

The first service CompUSA offers is a free Vista ready checkup. The customer brings their current computer to a store and a technician will perform a quick five minute check in order to tell if their system can run Vista.

CompUSA also has a notebook trade-up program. The customer brings their notebook in for a free value assessment. Whatever the assessed value is becomes store credit to use towards a new notebook equipped with Windows Vista.

“Get it now, play around with it and see how it works,” Paul Scott, a senior and MicroCenter employee, said, “but don’t expect full functionality until the first service pack comes out.”

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Jessica Chesko

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