More on Windows 7

The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly.

(Sorry, I couldn’t resist!)

Okay, I’ll try to keep this short and to the point, unlike my last rambling post.

First, the Good:

  • The search feature, built into the Start menu, is surprisingly fast.  It’s right up there with Spotlight.  In fact, it’s now my de facto way of launching apps – just hit the Windows key and start typing.
  • Copying files across the network seems quicker than XP (but, sadly, still slower than OS X).
  • Right-clicking icons in the task bar brings up a menu with either frequently used or recent items (depending on the app), which you can “pin” items to.
  • The new Task Manager, with more information on processes and the addition of the Services tab, from which you can start and stop services or launch the Services management console.  (Although, Process Explorer is still better.)
  • The Resource Monitor, which can be launched from Task Manager.  Wow.  There’s too much here to even go into.
  • Temporarily show the Desktop by hovering the cursor at the end of the taskbar, it makes all running apps “invisible”.  (Not as useful as Expose on the Mac though, where I can hit F-11 to swipe away all open windows, then grab something on the desktop and pull it into whatever I’m working on.)
  • Temporarily show any open window (even if it’s minimized) by hovering over the taskbar icon for the app, which displays a mini-preview of all windows in that app, then hovering over the mini-preview.  Again, this makes other apps “invisible”.  Useful if you’re working in one app and need to see something in another app without actually switching to it.

The Bad:

  • IE8 is actually worse than IE7 at displaying some websites.  Turning on Compatibility Mode (to make it act like IE7) fixes some problems.  Why can’t MS get CSS right?  Every other browser on the planet can properly display CSS, why not IE?
  • The download dialog in IE 8 hang at 99%, even though the download is actually complete.  Eventually the dialog will close, but it’s an annoying, weird bug.
  • Some windows and dialog boxes (open/close) do a poor job of hiding .tmp files.  Again, weird and annoying.

The Ugly:

This one’s a deal breaker for me.  I cannot get Active Directory Users and Computers working in Windows 7.  I know this is an issue under Vista, too, so I followed all of the advice I could find for getting the Server 2003 administrative tools to work under Vista, but still no ADUC.  Other tools, like DHCP and DNS, work fine.  I even tried installing the Server 2008 RSAT for Vista, but the installer says that that update is not for my version of Windows.  Ugh.  So, for now, I either need to keep my other machine up and running, or remote into one of the domain controllers whenever I need to change a password.

So there you have it.  So far so good (mostly).  If I think of anything else, I’ll post it.