Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 12th Nov 2008 22:55 UTC
Editorial Yesterday, a story made its rounds across the internet. It was picked up by many large news websites, and I'm sure it will be quoted by people until eternity. It was published by a large website, looked all fancy, it had multiple pages - it looked like it was really something. However, anyone with even the remotest bit of knowledge knows that the article was a collection of complete and utter bogus.
Order by: Score:
Holy War
by Ford Prefect on Wed 12th Nov 2008 23:58 UTC
Ford Prefect
Member since:
2006-01-16

Thom, you really seem to get yourself into a Holy War here with OSNews. Perhaps you should step back from that a little.


It is right that thread count, memory allocation etc. are bogus measurements (your rebuttal about what WinMin actually is meant to be sounds bogus to me, too; as if you would really know the kind of reorganization they are doing and how it would show or not). But your article tells more than that observation. It tells that you really so goddamn want to believe in a shiny bright new Windows 7 and you want others to believe in that, too. Same as educating everybody on how well Vista finally shaped up.

Save yourself some credibility and stay more to the facts. Fact is: I wait for MS to do a release, before I judge/condemn/defend it whatsoever. You are better off doing the same.

Edited 2008-11-13 00:01 UTC

Reply Score: 15

RE: Holy War
by Valhalla on Thu 13th Nov 2008 01:09 UTC in reply to "Holy War"
Valhalla Member since:
2006-01-24

Well, while I can agree that Thom has generally taken the 'pro Vista' stance I think 'Holy War' is over the top. Alot of the things he says regarding the shortcomings of the article in question I certainly agree with, however things like -"It is irrelevant how much memory is in use at any given time." is ridicoulus.

While I certainly have no problem with Superfetch which caches often used applications and data from disk into ram there's a huge difference between caching and the amount of ram usage that is necessary for the system to operate at all.

Vista has a very high memory requirement just to have the system running, which is why Microsoft still needs XP for stuff like netbooks etc. Superfetch is not part of this problem since it simply mirrors content existing on disk and as such can be flushed the second you need that memory, the system memory usage is another thing altogether and the only way to 'flush' that when memory gets low is to page it (i.e write it to disk) which is very slow.

I've said this before and will probably say it again, most people out there seldom if ever use their machine's full capacity and for them Vista is probably just a better looking Windows which launches programs faster and has some added functionality. However, for those who regularly use their systems resources to the max (generally professionals), Vista's memory usage (and to a lesser extent worse performance) only means a system with which they can do less. For me when I work I never encounter a 'too much memory or too much cpu power' situation, any surplus will be used one way or another to speed up my workflow. Granted I work with 3D which is very cpu/memory consuming, which is why I say that likely for the majority Vista is just fine (although many of my buddies who are into PC gaming disagree since they get less performance).

From the sound of it Windows 7 will be much slimmer (or atleast modular enough to be made much slimmer) which sounds great to me, and given that Microsoft really wants to retire XP that might just be what we'll get.

A leaner operating system means more resources for the applications I wish to use, and it is the applications and not the operating system that makes me want to turn on the computer.

Reply Score: 5

RE: Holy War
by BluenoseJake on Thu 13th Nov 2008 01:22 UTC in reply to "Holy War"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

I'm pretty sure if you google MinWin, you'll get a lot of hits explaining what MinWin is and isn't. Perhaps after you read some of them you won't be so quick to judge Thom's explanation of MinWin. It is pretty close to the things I have read.

Reply Score: 6

RE: Holy War
by google_ninja on Thu 13th Nov 2008 01:32 UTC in reply to "Holy War"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

(your rebuttal about what WinMin actually is meant to be sounds bogus to me, too; as if you would really know the kind of reorganization they are doing and how it would show or not).


"MinWin" has been in effect for ages now. I don't know what people expect, maybe a checked list with stuff to turn on or off? NT is modular enough now that they can do a home version, a server version, a stripped down server version and an embedded version of the same kernel through configuration. That is minwin, and it is here.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Holy War
by StephenBeDoper on Fri 14th Nov 2008 03:01 UTC in reply to "Holy War"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

It tells that you really so goddamn want to believe in a shiny bright new Windows 7 and you want others to believe in that, too. Same as educating everybody on how well Vista finally shaped up.


I don't see any sign of that in either the literal text or between the lines. If there is an overall sentiment expressed by the article, I think it's annoyance at the way that zealots, fanboys (or in the case of Microsoft, anti-fanboys) have end up dominating and framing the discussion, to point of drowning out any voices of reason or moderation.

Reply Score: 1

ok here is what it really is
by poundsmack on Thu 13th Nov 2008 00:15 UTC
poundsmack
Member since:
2005-07-13

everyone remember when Pontiac rereleased the GTO a few years back? it was fast, handeled pretty well, but over all it was unimpressive and lacked teh luster of its predicesor. then, 2 years later, they did a revision, not a full blown revision, but fine tuned it, added dual exaust, a corvet engine with 400 hp, and refined it to make it really worth while (still not as good as the GTO of old but i digress). that is what windows 7 is to Vista, they changed some things under the hood, make it more comseticly appealing and functional, and finetuned existing features while stripping out things it didnt need.

Windows 7 is not a revolutionary new OS built from the ground up, it is an OS build on proven core technologies (yes vista's core technologies are good, they just needed a little more fine tuning), giving it a nicely UI with better functionality (i have tried it, and trust me I will never hit the "clasic mode" button again) and over all made it better faster stronger. it will be good, very good, so people stop shouting from the rooftops that it isnt this or that, and start being greatfull for what it is and will be. its fast, stable, and doesnt come with the bloaded apps people dont commonly use, it has been streamlined and improved and the UI is rather nice. and for teh love of god, its pre beta (though it feels like true beta) stop comparing it to everythign that isnt in the same phase of development!

Reply Score: 2

RE: ok here is what it really is
by Chicken Blood on Thu 13th Nov 2008 05:28 UTC in reply to "ok here is what it really is"
Chicken Blood Member since:
2005-12-21

everyone remember when Pontiac rereleased the GTO a few years back?


No.

Reply Score: 8

RE: ok here is what it really is
by wakeupneo on Thu 13th Nov 2008 07:00 UTC in reply to "ok here is what it really is"
wakeupneo Member since:
2005-07-06

Severely OT but anyway....

everyone remember when Pontiac rereleased the GTO a few years back?


..with a cringe...yes. Pontiac took a great looking car (the Holden Monaro), pumped the front end with botox and a stupid grille and tried to flog the ugly bugger to Americans. If they'd left it alone and not called it a 'GTO' (which has waaaay too much history and hardcore fans to contend with) it might have done well. But, you get the G8 from us now and that doesn't look too bad I guess, so all is forgiven ;)

Reply Score: 2

Win7 is Microsoft's last chance
by zaine_ridling on Thu 13th Nov 2008 00:26 UTC
zaine_ridling
Member since:
2007-05-13

Windows 7 may not be a "revolutionary new OS" but it's very likely Microsoft's last chance to hold on to about 25% or more of its market share who will be looking to jump between now and then. We've already been down this road of better-faster-more secure with Vista, and if Microsoft burns its customers again, GNU/Linux and OS X will reap new users from the disaster.

As Holwerda suggests, Win7 will be more like Win98 SE, as in Vista Second Edition. To believe anything more is setting yourself up for deep disappointment.

Reply Score: 5

Moochman Member since:
2005-07-06

Eh, a bit more than Win98 SE I think. The interface for one is being completely reworked; that alone is huge.

Reply Score: 2

What is windows 7
by hraq on Thu 13th Nov 2008 00:37 UTC
hraq
Member since:
2005-07-06

Windows 7 basically has fixed vista's
1. Bugs
2. GUI performance issues
3. other annoyances.
4. Plus few anemic new features which a lot of would never care about.

Reply Score: 2

RE: What is windows 7
by google_ninja on Thu 13th Nov 2008 01:37 UTC in reply to "What is windows 7"
google_ninja Member since:
2006-02-05

Plus few anemic new features which a lot of would never care about.


I have it installed, and let me tell you, the shift from task bar to dock is going to have a MASSIVE impact. Windows users (most software users in a general way, but in my experience windows users in particular) hate change, the more used to something they are the more they hate it. The task bar is a fundamental part of using the os, and people are going to be flipping out over it going away like nobodies business.

Reply Score: 6

RE[2]: What is windows 7
by Doc Pain on Fri 14th Nov 2008 12:00 UTC in reply to "RE: What is windows 7"
Doc Pain Member since:
2006-10-08

Windows users [...] hate change, the more used to something they are the more they hate it. The task bar is a fundamental part of using the os, and people are going to be flipping out over it going away like nobodies business.


Here in Germany, we're always a bit "after the time" when it comes to "Windows". Most people use "the good 'XP'" here. Having seen many of them abandoning Vista from their newly purchased PCs and reinstalling some pirated copy of "XP" makes me think that if "Windows 7" enters the field here, they'll find it unintuitive, annoying, and will then hate it, followed by a wipe-off and "back to my good 'XP'". Even if MICROS~1 would insist on having made the life easier for their users, the users theirselves won't realize this. It seems to be easier for them to fiddle around with incompatible drivers and workarounds then to change the point of view about how to launch an application.

Reply Score: 3

complete and utter bogus...
by berzerko on Thu 13th Nov 2008 00:48 UTC
berzerko
Member since:
2005-11-11

...complete and utter bogus what?

Reply Score: 1

RE: complete and utter bogus...
by diskinetic on Sat 15th Nov 2008 18:50 UTC in reply to "complete and utter bogus..."
diskinetic Member since:
2005-12-09

...complete and utter bogus what?

ness, I believe.

Reply Score: 2

High Five
by rexstuff on Thu 13th Nov 2008 01:27 UTC
rexstuff
Member since:
2007-04-06

Well said, Thom. It is a good debunking of a shite article.

You get a high five.

There is altogether too little rigour used in arguments made on the internet, as though being on the internet is some sort of excuse. It is a vicious cycle - the more crap there is, the more we expect crap, the more willing we are to put up with crap, instead of insisting on quality (ie not crap). Alas, naught can be done.

Reply Score: 2

Funny thing about threads...
by JonathanBThompson on Thu 13th Nov 2008 01:30 UTC
JonathanBThompson
Member since:
2006-05-26

Just because you add or remove threads from a process or a system, doesn't always change performance in a meaningful manner, and it may very well just add more bugs to add them. All other things being equal, it's far easier to create a single-threaded application that works correctly than one with more than one thread, but most GUI processes that have any significant processing that may be done where the user could also conceivably do other tasks while something is running in the background, tend to benefit from at least one more thread. However, there are actually cases in Windows, if they're I/O things you're waiting for, that have no need for adding extra threads to the system: this isn't unique to Windows, granted. But, with asynchronous I/O, things are generally simpler to write and debug than adding another thread just for that purpose. For user applications, the benefits may not be as noticeable, but server applications use this a lot, and in many cases, more threads!= better performance, but rather, more asynchronous I/O calls and a single thread or a small thread pool.

Then there's the generalized case that's not I/O bound, but is instead, largely compute-bound: depending on the task, this may actually noticeably benefit from adding multiple threads, but only enough extra threads to ensure all available processing cores are always busy with useful computations. That being said, once you start adding more threads than that, you're actually going to start losing efficiency, as there's a lot of thread management overhead involved. Here are the basic facts about Windows: most background processes have a rather finite number of threads that make any sense to have, regardless of how many cores are available, because they're mostly I/O bound or waiting for user actions: there's no value added by adding more threads, and it may even be an advantage to reduce some of the threads, and more beneficial, more processes, since switching between processes is more expensive. There really hasn't been that much that's noticeably changed for the things that are done in the background as part of the standard Windows system between Windows 2000 and Vista, and likely no meaningful change between Vista and Windows 7, and chances are, Microsoft figured out the optimum number of threads/processes for each task a long time ago, or perhaps for those that may not be optimum for performance, it was just...easier to not worry about it, and they figured it worked well enough.

Thus, stating "no noticeable thread/process counts means there's nothing that's changed!" (my words) really means nothing of value, because if you're still solving the same basic needs/wants, and they're mostly I/O and/or user-bound instead of compute-bound, there's no incentive to change things very much.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by MikeekiM
by MikeekiM on Thu 13th Nov 2008 02:08 UTC
MikeekiM
Member since:
2005-11-16

In fact, the kernel in each major new version of the Windows OS has spawned a different, typically higher number of threads. So when I examined Windows 7 and found a nearly identical thread count (97 to 100) for the System process, I knew right away that I was dealing with a minor point-type of release, as opposed to a major update or rewrite. This was not "MinWin," the mythical, streamlined new Windows kernel that promised a clean break with the bloated Vista.

Oh boy. Where on earth do I start. First of all, the number of threads running within a kernel says absolutely nothing whatsoever about how many changes have or have not gone into the kernel - in much the same way that the number of parts...

Oh boy, Thom, Your the one over the top. "The number of threads running within a kernel says absolutely nothing..." BS.

It tells you EXACTLY what the author says it tells you, was this a major rewrite of OS functionality or was it a minor update. The author points out Some Change from 97 to 100. That sounds reasonable to me given the time between releases. Looks like this guy knows what he's talking about.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by MikeekiM
by PlatformAgnostic on Thu 13th Nov 2008 11:45 UTC in reply to "Comment by MikeekiM"
PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

I've been involved in some pretty massive changes to the kernel in Win7, and I can assure you that no threads were added or removed... Kennedy is pretty clueless.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Comment by MikeekiM
by StephenBeDoper on Fri 14th Nov 2008 03:27 UTC in reply to "Comment by MikeekiM"
StephenBeDoper Member since:
2005-07-06

It tells you EXACTLY what the author says it tells you, was this a major rewrite of OS functionality or was it a minor update.


The difference in the number of threads between releases tells you exactly one thing: the difference in the number of threads. Without some (any) additional context, that tells you next to nothing about the OS(es) as a whole. E.g., I see two incredibly obvious questions that the author of TFA appears to have ignored completely: are they actually the *same* threads? And do they consume equal amounts of resources (individually and/or collectively)?

Granted, I don't agree that the number of threads is totally without significance - but your post (and TFA) overstate that significance to a truly absurd degree.

Reply Score: 2

Inspiration!
by DigitalAxis on Thu 13th Nov 2008 02:27 UTC
DigitalAxis
Member since:
2005-08-28

This thread has inspired me to attempt to determine the lineage of linux distros based on how many init scripts they have.

Edited 2008-11-13 02:29 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Blah 7
by nbensa on Thu 13th Nov 2008 02:48 UTC
nbensa
Member since:
2005-08-29

Yup. It is Vista or do you reaaaally believe they re-wrote the whole thing from scratch in only a few months?

C'mon... Isn't there anything else to talk about other than 7!?

Reply Score: 4

RE: Blah 7
by modmans2ndcoming on Thu 13th Nov 2008 04:37 UTC in reply to "Blah 7"
modmans2ndcoming Member since:
2005-11-09

Vista was the code base, just like every OS release.

Vista was a major restructuring of the windows code. It is much more componentized now than it ever was. This allowed the Windows 7 guys to make some changes to how Vista worked by replacing a few chunks of code.

Windows 7 has some major interface changes as well, the biggest being that there is an asynchronous UI system, meaning that you can interact with the PC at your own pace and do not have to wait for an operation to complete to click the next widgit, etc.

Reply Score: 5

RE[2]: Blah 7
by REM2000 on Thu 13th Nov 2008 08:56 UTC in reply to "RE: Blah 7"
REM2000 Member since:
2006-07-25

I don't understand why so many people think that releases of OS's are complete rewrites.

Windows Vista was based on Windows 2k3 which was based on XP which was based on 2k which was based on NT4 and so on.

Mac OSX all of them are based off 10.0 which in turn was based on NextStep and so on

Linux evolves

To do an OS rewrite would be practically impossible, not only would you have an OS that would take a long time to product but it wouldn't be mature and would certainly be filled with bugs.

OS's are incredibly complex, but they are evolved. It reminds me when people critise the windows file system NTFS, Vista is not using the same NTFS from 3/4 era it has been evolved over time, the NTFS found in win2008 can self repair without rebooting. This is not to say that it's the only FS that can do this, but it proves the filesystem aswell as the OS's are evolved and improved over time.

Not even Microsoft with all it's money and developers could rewrite something as complex as the Windows OS in todays modern expectations of what an OS should do and have.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: Blah 7
by circlomanen on Thu 13th Nov 2008 18:19 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Blah 7"
circlomanen Member since:
2008-11-02

"Not even Microsoft with all it's money and developers could rewrite something as complex as the Windows OS in todays modern expectations of what an OS should do and have."

They could open-source XP. Release it under GPL2. ;)

Reply Score: 0

RE[4]: Blah 7
by Michael on Thu 13th Nov 2008 20:12 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Blah 7"
Michael Member since:
2005-07-01

To create a complete rewrite, you'd need complete specifications of the APIs and none of the original source code. Otherwise, it wouldn't be a complete rewrite would it?

Reply Score: 2

Thom and the Microsoft Bandwagon
by TechGeek on Thu 13th Nov 2008 03:55 UTC
TechGeek
Member since:
2006-01-14

Thom, you seriously act like a spokesperson for Microsoft. I read the article you were referring to. The author NEVER claims that thread count or process count are hard facts of anything. But his reasoning does hold. Just like the number of lines of code in the linux kernel doesn't always predict changes. But if you look at history, as the kernel developed, the number of lines of code went up. You can there by reasonably conclude that if you have two kernels with almost the same amount of lines of code, they are probably close together in version. Is it absolute proof? Of course not. But the author never made that claim. He also isnt the first person to do benchmarks and conclude that Windows 7 isn't any faster than Vista.

As for MinWin, you contradict yourself. In one sentence you say "MinWin is not a new kernel." but then in a later sentence you state "The only thing Microsoft did was reorganise parts of it to make it cleaner, and to make sure they had a small core without any outward calls". If they made fundamental changes to it then I would say that's a new kernel.

I don't get what your problem was with the article, it didn't even really bash Windows. Maybe it was just the fact that he wasn't kissing Microsoft's butt over how great Windows 7 is.

Edited 2008-11-13 03:56 UTC

Reply Score: 10

PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

MinWin is not a new kernel and not a reorganization of anything that lives in ring0. That stuff is already pretty well-organized and tends to need to be together.

MinWin is a reorganization of the user-mode APIs and lower-level DLLs of Windows so that layering relationships can be preserved and user-mode components can be cleanly separated.

Reply Score: 7

DouglasH Member since:
2008-11-16

He also isnt the first person to do benchmarks and conclude that Windows 7 isn't any faster than Vista.[q]

But those that have done so have not stated the exact setup of the equipment they are profileing. that includes the drivers loaded etc. and it is on a prebeta with limited drivers.

An example would be. MS has publically stated that the memory improvements with the DWM are not seen unless the drivers are WDDM 1.1 drivers. Actually I would be impressed that a Prebeta with the debug code embedded in the system is performing as quickly as a RTM OS. It certainly is paceing Vista SP2 which on my system blows away Vista SP1.

[q] As for MinWin, you contradict yourself. In one sentence you say "MinWin is not a new kernel." but then in a later sentence you state "The only thing Microsoft did was reorganise parts of it to make it cleaner, and to make sure they had a small core without any outward calls". If they made fundamental changes to it then I would say that's a new kernel. I don't get what your problem was with the article, it didn't even really bash Windows.


By your argument here, every update to features in the 2.6.x linux kernel would be a major update. Think my last count of the 2.6 kernel that added features would be the kernel at 2.10 to 2.12 (given the release cycle of kernels in linux's past).

minwin is an optimization of the lowest level Kernel and supporting files, so that there is a seperation of calls out and into the kernel that makes it more moduliar.

minwin in effect has been in the OS since win 2k if not at win 3.5. The issue has become that integration over time had calls at the wrong layer of the stack. this became blazenly clear when Server Core was added to the release cycle. and when the Network Layer was programmed from scratch in Vista.

I will state this. NO Modern Day general purpose OS in Major use today has been written from scratch.

NT has evolved since it was originally written from 3.5 days and I am sure most of the code has evolved over time.

Linux is in the same boat. it Largely has evolved from its initial creation. Linus has decided with the kernel that there has to be major underlying functional changes to even rate a minor change in the kernel numbering. and going from 2.6 to 2.8 would be a minor kernel update.

BTW the kernel has a new version number it is 6.1 from 6.0 in vista/2k8.
Douglas

Reply Score: 1

Memory usage
by voidlogic on Thu 13th Nov 2008 04:03 UTC
voidlogic
Member since:
2005-09-03

I think a contributing factor to this drama is the way in which windows reports memory that is being used for caching and buffers. I wish they presented in in something along the lines of "free" in UNIX. Here is an example:

total used free shared buffers cached
Mem: 3371692 1307396 2064296 0 62924 743724
-/+ buffers/cache: 500748 2870944
Swap: 4192760 0 4192760

(Sorry OS news doesn't support a mono-spaced formatting, like the code tag)

In any case, I also think it is important to make a distinction between memory being used for cache and the memory the kernel is being used for object pools. A system under memory pressure gives up cache freely, so memory should be used aggressively for disk cache. However, memory used for internal object pools is often (read implementation specificly) not available to be made free upon demand. I have gotten the the impression from Vista that they assume that since now days memory is cheap everything should eat up memory for extra pools. This is "just" an impression, since it is not OSS I can't just look ;)

Reply Score: 2

Wow
by zenulator on Thu 13th Nov 2008 06:07 UTC
zenulator
Member since:
2008-06-29

So much hype over pre-beta software. Windows 7 is the evolution of vista not the death of it.

Reply Score: 2

Page 2
by spiderman on Thu 13th Nov 2008 06:49 UTC
spiderman
Member since:
2008-10-23

--> Page 2
Reason: Windows 7 speculations
4653168th article about Windows 7
From now on, everything about Windows 7 should be on page 2 in my opinion. It's just talk talk talk. There is just nothing new about Windows 7 until it is released. When there is something new, please publish it. When someone talk about Windows 7 on the internet, please put that on page 2. (My opinion)

Reply Score: 6

RE: Page 2
by BallmerKnowsBest on Fri 14th Nov 2008 16:09 UTC in reply to "Page 2"
BallmerKnowsBest Member since:
2008-06-02

What, are you crazy? You would give up the entertainment value of watching all the Maclots and Freetards work themselves into a frenzy of impotent rage every time some positive news about Microsoft is posted?

I understand why you can't bear to read any positive news about Microsoft - the truth hurts, after all, especially when your whole life revolves around hating Microsoft. But trying to censors sites that report that news isn't going to make the truth any less painful, I'm afraid.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Page 2
by Soulbender on Fri 14th Nov 2008 16:36 UTC in reply to "RE: Page 2"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

You would give up the entertainment value of watching all the Maclots and Freetards


Sorry, but you lost all credibility with this lame namecalling.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Page 2
by sbergman27 on Fri 14th Nov 2008 17:29 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Page 2"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Sorry, but you lost all credibility with this lame namecalling.

Actually, I thought "freetards" was rather funny. Even though he may well be including me in that category.

I think that both bkb and the spiderman have reasonable points. There is a difference between loving one's own platform and hating other platforms or the companies which produce them. I think it is far more productive, and pleasant, to stick as much as possible to the promoting one's own platform part and avoiding the hating part as much as possible.

However... spiderman's observation that these seemingly endless Windows 7 speculation articles and editorials might best be put on Page 2 is very reasonable, and I agree with it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Page 2
by Soulbender on Fri 14th Nov 2008 18:14 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Page 2"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

to stick as much as possible to the promoting one's own platform part and avoiding the hating part as much as possible.


Of course, but using name-calling is usually not a good way of avoiding the hating. Especially not when the original post was not very inflammatory to begin with.

Reply Score: 2

haha :)
by fumo on Thu 13th Nov 2008 08:30 UTC
fumo
Member since:
2007-02-21

that's what you get for having too much hype on windows 7 ;)
People start dreaming windows 7 will cure all windows problems... wait ! we're not there just yet ;)

We will never be there anyway if you ask me. It is not in Microsoft's best interest, although I would really like to see a brand new kicking ass OS from them.

Reply Score: 3

You and the author of the article agree...not
by stln on Thu 13th Nov 2008 09:55 UTC
stln
Member since:
2008-11-13

Here is my problem with your post:
-First you conclude that the author doesn't know what he's talking about because he says that the Vista and Windows 7 kernels are very similar

- Then you say that Windows 7 never was intended as a 'new kernel' ... and that the kernels are very similar.

You are focussing on the way he arrived at that conclusion and make a big fuss about it being 'not scientific'.

But all the time you avoid the hart of the matter: that according to the author (and I agree with him), there is a substantial gap between what windows 7 is marketed to be (Vista, but lean and mean) and what it is (Vista, with a few tweaks).

I must say that I'm very dissapointed to hear that in terms of memory footprint and performance, windows 7 is very similar to Vista.

And don't start about 'beta software'. We all know that MS wants to push W7 out of the door before the summer which means that the cut-off date for any real development is about now.

And then there is the other problem: at least the upgrade will be smooth because they kept Vista almost entirely. Well... aparently they still managed to break lots of things.
Of course this IS an area where a lot of progress can still be expected. But still it is worrying that when 'if it runs on Vista then it runs on W7' is your credo, it doesn't really show.

Reply Score: 5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

But all the time you avoid the hart of the matter: that according to the author (and I agree with him), there is a substantial gap between what windows 7 is marketed to be (Vista, but lean and mean) and what it is (Vista, with a few tweaks).


Except... Windows 7 was never marketed as lean and mean. You're just making that up.

Reply Score: 4

stln Member since:
2008-11-13

Well.. with the risk of being flagged as a troller...
I just surfed to MS website and typed in "windows 7".
The first paragraph goes like this:

"what is Windows 7?

It's the next version of Windows for PCs, and it's the result of working hand-in-hand with our partners and with people who use Windows in the real world every day. We're paying particular attention to the things they're telling us are important to them and will make their PCs work the way they want them to—things like enhanced reliability, responsiveness, and faster boot and shut-down. We're also trying to make their everyday tasks easier, like connecting and syncing devices, browsing the web, and managing a home network. "

I read two important items they will work on: reliability and performance. Connectivity is also an important concern.

If you read it differently then you really are ready to join the Microsoft promotion team (I'm not the first to say this in this thread by the way).

Reply Score: 5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

reliability and performance.


Where do you see the word performance in there?

Reply Score: 2

stln Member since:
2008-11-13

QED

Reply Score: 3

stln Member since:
2008-11-13

Well, let's just say then that in the eyes of some people, including the author of the article and me, there was the expectation that the kernel was going to be 'optimized'.

Which it isn't.

You, I and the author agree that it isn't.

You and I (and the author) disagree that such an optimization was to be expected.

Anyways, this discussion is much more relevant to me than deciding if memory footprint and thread count is a valuable indication of the 'likeness' of two kernels.

Hence my 'missing the point'.

Can we leave it at that?

Reply Score: 3

mackintire Member since:
2008-11-15

Someone needs to read the Windows 7 engineering blog.

Memory tweaks and optimisation will be finished by Release canidate. Windows 7 when finished should require 200MB less memory on a clean boot.

Reply Score: 1

Pretty Hilarious
by PlatformAgnostic on Thu 13th Nov 2008 11:40 UTC
PlatformAgnostic
Member since:
2006-01-02

Here's why you should discount everything this guy says: "The additional Local Procedure Call overhead of moving portions of MDAC (Microsoft Data Access Components) out of the kernel would most certainly be felt by a time-sensitive, looping transactional workload like ADO Stress. "

It seems like he can't tell the difference between the Kernel and random user-mode DLLs that have nothing to do with the kernel at all. I can safely say that MDAC has not moved up, down, into, or out of the kernel, since it's a relatively high-layer user mode component. Also, a change like the one he mentioned would have a much greater than 5% overhead.

There's a lot of tuning, tweaking, and performance work that goes on toward the end of the design cycle. There's really no point in trying to draw conclusious from memory and CPU data from the M3 build. There have been quite a few changes since 6801 to the kernel, heap, and other subsystems that would affect this dramatically. I bet the thread-count hasn't changed much though, so maybe that "benchmark" will stand.

I can't believe this guy is still hawking his benchmark scripts...

Edited 2008-11-13 11:41 UTC

Reply Score: 7

RE: Pretty Hilarious
by Soulbender on Thu 13th Nov 2008 11:47 UTC in reply to "Pretty Hilarious"
Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

WTF? MDAC in the kernel? I actually had to re-read the article just to check that you didn't make that up. He even think Jet runs in the kernel. Hilarious.
He sure take incompetence to a whole new level.

Reply Score: 4

RE: Pretty Hilarious
by WereCatf on Thu 13th Nov 2008 12:47 UTC in reply to "Pretty Hilarious"
WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

Here's why you should discount everything this guy says: "The additional Local Procedure Call overhead of moving portions of MDAC (Microsoft Data Access Components) out of the kernel would most certainly be felt by a time-sensitive, looping transactional workload like ADO Stress. "

W-O-W. Just...Wow. MDAC in the kernel...Are you guys sure it's not a joke or something? Can there be anyone stupid enough to think MDAC lies in the kernel? O_o Maybe he's just trying to play a joke on everyone? :O

Reply Score: 3

Win7 is what Vista should have been.
by truckweb on Thu 13th Nov 2008 13:53 UTC
truckweb
Member since:
2005-07-06

The only problem I have with Win7 is the fact that it's what Vista should have been in the first place. Even Microsoft admit Vista is not a success.

BUT.... WE will have to pay to get Win7. Opening my wallet and throw away cash twice to have 1 good OS is my main problem.

I remember that WinXP SP2 was a big, important SP with huge security updates. But it was still a free SP.

I wonder if Win7 should have been Vista SP3...

Reply Score: 4

md5 sums
by renhoek on Thu 13th Nov 2008 18:11 UTC
renhoek
Member since:
2007-04-29

i got the feeling little has changed between windows vista and win7. can somebody do a md5sum of the system directory? that should give clear view of which files did not change (and is a lot easier to measure).

Reply Score: 1

RE: md5 sums
by PlatformAgnostic on Thu 13th Nov 2008 19:33 UTC in reply to "md5 sums"
PlatformAgnostic Member since:
2006-01-02

Not likely to work, since the compiler changes significantly every release.

If you're willing to pony up a couple thousand for bindiff, you'd have a better shot.

Reply Score: 3

JeffS
Member since:
2005-07-12

... or the number of defectors to Macs and/or Linux powered netbooks will increase.

7 needs to be significantly less annoying out of the box, than Vista, i.e - UAC has to be less obtrusive, memory consumption has to be less significant, Windows search has to be significantly improved or eliminated, etc.

7 needs to perform noticably better than Vista.

7 needs to be modularized enough that it can be stripped down enough to run comfortably, with applications, on a netbook.

7 has to have less brain-dead auto-update behavior than Vista does

7 needs to be more fully compatible with more hardware and software, upon release, than Vista was

And I'm saying this as someone who has grown used to Vista, and is now even somewhat satisfied with it, after some tweaking:

- Turned off the indexing Windows Search service - that was a big resource hog, and constantly thrashed the hard drive.
- Turned off UAC - UAC is about as much fun as being stapled on the head
- Turned off the useless (to me) gadget bar
- Turned of SuperFetch - sure, it sped up the starting of some apps (very slightly), but it seemed to be constantly thrashing my hard drive, loading and flushing apps in the background as it was figuring out my app habits.
- Disabled unneeded apps and services on start-up/login.
- Turned off automatic updates (now doing them manually in "Windows Update"). It sucks if your computer happens to be off during the weekly scheduled auto-update time (for me 3am Monday), and the next day you're typing something, or downloading something, and Vista downloads and installs updates in the background, since it missed the scheduled time, and then auto-reboots, without prompting for permission - and POOF!, your typing, or download (or whatever other work/play you were in the middle of), just went bye-bye.

You'd think that it would put up a message saying "Updates complete, rebooting in 30 seconds", with a "reboot later" option. That way it would still do the auto-update at 3am Monday without any needed interaction, but still give you an out in case it does the update while you're in the middle of actually doing something. That would be the sensible thing to do. But NooOOOOoooo! It reboots, no matter what you're doing! Utterly ridiculous!!

The desingers/architects/engineers in Redmond had to be smoking crack to come up with crap like UAC, the disc thrashing search engine, and the brain dead auto-update behavior.

Anyway, After doing all those tweaks, Vista became fairly pleasant to use, on my modern Dell Inspiron 1526 Laptop (2.4 GHz dual core CPU, 2 Gigs of Ram, ATI accelorated graphics card). It has really gorgeous graphics (the Aeroglass interface really is nice, and comparable to OSX's graphics) and nice packaged programs (Windows Mail, Calendar, Media player, etc nice apps - better than the old Outlook Express, or old Outlook, and better than the old Windows Media player).

I shudder to think how Vista would be on an older, less powerful machine.

It also helps that I dual boot with Linux Mint. When I get out of Vista and reboot into Mint, it's like going from a Hummer to a Honda.

Edited 2008-11-13 21:46 UTC

Reply Score: 2

craz Member since:
2008-11-13

UAC is a good thing. Their only problem was not letting you customize UAC much at all, and assuming everybody would need the same settings. There is no security application or tool in the world that doesn't give you any option at all like UAC. Good news is they're changing it up in Windows 7.

Check out this post I wrote about UAC:
http://windows7center.com/windows-7-news/why-uac-works-and-what-it-...

Reply Score: 1

Why all the hatred?
by Peace on Thu 13th Nov 2008 21:35 UTC
Peace
Member since:
2008-11-13

I am a medical doctor pretending to have a little knowledge of computers. I try to keep in touch with what is happening in your world (I got here through Lifehacker) and somehow I still cannot get around why there is so much dislike for Microsoft.

It seems like they can never win. They are either doing too much or not enough. Considering the kind of influence they have on peoples lives (through just Windows and Office products) I think they are not doing too bad at all.
Of course most of you are professionals who are into 3D, Printing, Movies, etc and how your OS behaves is absolutely important. However, do remember that the really big majority of people out there just want to get on the internet, send an email, listen to a song or two and draft a letter now and then. For them, Microsoft and Vista have been doing the job quite ok.

I have always thought, in any case, Vista was a great product and expected that there had to be teething problems initially as they wrote the code completely anew (I hope I am right) from the bottom up. I look forward to the final release of Windows 7 with an open mind. I wish some of you here would do the same.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Why all the hatred?
by abraxas on Mon 17th Nov 2008 15:15 UTC in reply to "Why all the hatred?"
abraxas Member since:
2005-07-07

It seems like they can never win. They are either doing too much or not enough. Considering the kind of influence they have on peoples lives (through just Windows and Office products) I think they are not doing too bad at all.


One of the issues I have as a technical person is Microsoft's despicable business practices. This comes into play often in the tech world. Their influence is huge but they don't like to play nice, making everyone else's life miserable. They care little about interoperation so if you're aren't using one of their products because you won't or can't then a lot of the time you're just stuck. Also Microsoft didn't create programs like Excel, they bought them.

The other issue is purely technical. Windows has historically suffered from disasterous security. While things have improved somewhat the issue is far from solved. Their motive is purely profit, which is understandable in the business world but that means that technical aspects are less important. This is readily evident in Vista. They marketing a ton of features before it was released, then quitely dropped many of them and released a half-baked OS.

You are correct that most users only care about checking their email and using the internet but most don't realize that life could be easier and they could do even more with their computer if they didn't have to struggle with the inadequacies of Vista. The antivirus and antispyware situation alone is a disaster.

I have always thought, in any case, Vista was a great product and expected that there had to be teething problems initially as they wrote the code completely anew (I hope I am right) from the bottom up.


I hate to break it to you but Vista is not a complete rewrite. The code goes back to 1994 with the release of NT. NT evolved into 2000 which evolved into XP which evolved into Vista. There have been a ton of improvements along the way but a lot of sludge has accumulated in the past 14 years.

While there is some unabashed zeolotry about operating systems, not all of us who dislike Microsoft and choose alternatives do it because of religion. Personally I hope Windows 7 is an improvement because even though I try to avoid Microsoft's products I still have to deal with them on a daily basis so I would rather that experience be a pleasant one.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by craz
by craz on Thu 13th Nov 2008 21:40 UTC
craz
Member since:
2008-11-13

I created an account just to post to this article. Your article is excellent and in many ways I had thought the same as you. I have no knowledge in computer engineering or any Windows 7 development stuff and even I know that the number of threads does not mean a whole lot, or anything relevant to the kernel of the OS.

Also, everyone, or anybody writing on a website as big as Infoworld, should know by now that Windows now uses as much RAM as possible, since idle RAM is wasted RAM. How could he not know this?

This is just bad press. I don't understand why websites are doing benchmarking at this stage of the game. If the benchmarks come out positive, I guess they are worth showing. But if they are negative, there's still a whole lot of room for improvement. We aren't even in beta yet for pete's sake.

Good post by OSNews. I don't want to see any of these crap articles again just so they can reach Digg, slashdot, or whatever a few more times...

Reply Score: 3