What does MS Vista really offer?

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mbetea
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Post by mbetea » Tue Dec 05, 2006 11:25 pm

Pricing is pretty steep, as is typical for Microsoft ($400 for Vista Ultimate) but that's the price to play.
Not really directed at you personally, but is MS changing their stance on OEM software? I haven't read anything that said places like Newegg and whatnot will not be able to sell OEM versions of Vista(Ultimate).

From MS's site they show Ultimate at $400 for the Retail package. In comparison the last time I checked the price of the retail version of XP Pro, it was $299 at CompUSA. So unless MS has changed how they will distribute Vista, I can't see paying more than maybe $190 for an OEM version of Ultimate upon release. I've never met a DIY'er that purchased a Retail copy of Windows.

vertigo
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Post by vertigo » Wed Dec 06, 2006 12:02 am

Don't you need to buy a preassembled PC to buy an oem version?

noneedforaname
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Post by noneedforaname » Wed Dec 06, 2006 2:09 am

aristide1 wrote:The idea of buying 2GB of DDR2 is not pleasant as its still too expensive and DDR3 is just around the corner.
When is DDR3 expected to be on the market?

nick705
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Post by nick705 » Wed Dec 06, 2006 2:33 am

vertigo wrote:Don't you need to buy a preassembled PC to buy an oem version?
AFAIK you can buy an OEM version with any hardware (eg you could buy an MCE remote control, and an OEM version of MCE to go with it). Once it's installed and activated on a given PC though (which means a motherboard according to MS), you can't transfer it to a different PC.

Not sure if the rules will be changing with Vista though...

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Wed Dec 06, 2006 2:51 am

Beyonder wrote:Umm, yes. There are other facets to the issue beyond "open" and "free." I'm a firm believer in free beer; however, there's more than one beer to choose from, so why drink the natty light?
Mmm... Beer. I guess I'm guess I'll have to walk to the freezer to pick a can and celebrate our indepence day.
Aris wrote:Havnt ever paid for any MS product yet, never will.
Sinner.
Plus you gotta wait till the corperate and school copies that dont require cdkeys to leak out into the public so you dont have to pay for it but still get all the updates without worry.
Sorry, corporate versions don't get all the updates. For example IE7 requires you to run a Microsoft genuine something check to install it. Same thing with Defender.
mbetea wrote:Not really directed at you personally, but is MS changing their stance on OEM software? I haven't read anything that said places like Newegg and whatnot will not be able to sell OEM versions of Vista(Ultimate).

From MS's site they show Ultimate at $400 for the Retail package. In comparison the last time I checked the price of the retail version of XP Pro, it was $299 at CompUSA. So unless MS has changed how they will distribute Vista, I can't see paying more than maybe $190 for an OEM version of Ultimate upon release. I've never met a DIY'er that purchased a Retail copy of Windows.
vertigo wrote:Don't you need to buy a preassembled PC to buy an oem version?
Presumably this is the case. Last week I was looking at the OEM-versions of Vista and they had a "new and confusing" OEM-disclaimer. I send an enquiry to our biggest e-tailer and asked what gives? I got a reply, that Microsoft is presumably changing their stance on the OEM-versions of Vista, meaning that they will be only sold to preassembled PCs. They weren't 100% sure of it, but it looks like that's how it'll be.

However, if you don't want to pay the money of the retail-version there's still an off route.

For example if I don't want to buy a new preassembled computer, I could buy a OEM-version of Windows XP home edition for 86.90 euros. Then use the Vista Upgrade option that costs 39 euros and upgrade the XP to Vista Home Basic (69 euros for Vista Home Premium). For comparison Retail Vista Home Basic is priced 259 euros here. And Vista Home Premium Upgrade DVD is priced at 199 euros. Making it a pretty useless option, because it would be cheaper to simply buy OEM Windows XP home and use the 69e upgrade option for a total price of 156 euros... However this will work only until March 2007. They had to make it so, that people wouldn't stop buying computers in the anticipation of Vista.

Goldmember
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Post by Goldmember » Wed Dec 06, 2006 4:13 pm

Erssa,

If MS has really changed the OEM policy then that's unfortunate and will only encourage piracy. It just reinforces the perception that MS is a greedy monopoly.

I remember when they admitted in an SEC document that they make over 80% profit margins on Windows and Office! :shock: Sheesh. I may be a capitalist but please don't screw me. They are just recycling the same old code and adding more lines to it.

Anyway, your proposed upgrade option seems the most sane. Don't forget that you can still perform a clean install with the upgrade DVD. You will just have to use the Win XP media to prove ownership.
http://www.winsupersite.com/reviews/winvista_03.asp

Edit: Added a link backing up my profit margin statement. I misspoke. Office only had a 78% profit margin and desktop Windows a 86% profit margin.
Last edited by Goldmember on Thu Dec 07, 2006 12:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.

seemingly.random
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Post by seemingly.random » Wed Dec 06, 2006 9:41 pm

There is a lot of misinformation on this thread. It would be useful to start a sticky that states the facts.

derekva
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Post by derekva » Thu Dec 07, 2006 12:42 am

Devonavar wrote:I wish that were true. They're certainly less common than in Win9x days, but I've run into tons of BSOD conditions under XP. To be fair, they're often hardware or driver related, but they still happen. The most reliable way I know of reproducing an BSOD condition is to try installing nVidia's driver pack on a system that previously had ATI Catalyst installed. This has happened for several driver generations on both sides, and AFAIK, it has never been fixed.
I wouldn't blame that on MSFT. More likely nVidia and/or ATI have buggy drivers. Let's face it, ATI hasn't exactly been known for its quality driver experience over the years (although Catalyst has improved dramatically in the last 12-18 months).

Remember, MSFT provides the core OS and the hooks for hardware providers to write drivers. Just because the drivers aren't adhering to the standards is no reason to blame MSFT.

-Derek

Devonavar
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Post by Devonavar » Thu Dec 07, 2006 10:07 pm

Where in my words do you read "blame Microsoft"? I'm fully aware that BSODs are often caused by third-party software, and I said as much. I'm commenting on the frequency of BSODs, not the quality of Microsoft's coding.

However, now that you mention it, I can think of a couple of reasons why Microsoft could be culpable for BSODs. One is for designing a driver system that allows device drivers to cause the kernal to fail. At that same time, I realize that this is hardly a simple problem to solve. However, where stability across a large range of hardware is concerned, it does seem that Unix has a better reputation in this regard ... and Linux has a worse one.

Another reason why Microsoft would be culpable is because the BSODs occur even when using WHQL-certified drivers, which suggests that either Microsoft's standards for device drivers either aren't high enough, that their standards are ambiguous, or that Microsoft is simply is incapable of correctly testing their standards properly.

However, the fact is that expecting no BSODs is unrealistic. Hardware failure will always cause BSODs, and making a completely fail-safe OS is far from an easy task.

Spare Tire
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Post by Spare Tire » Sat Feb 03, 2007 5:03 pm

vertigo wrote:
Vista's "Superfetch" feature fills a portion whatever ram is unused at that moment with whatever it thinks you are going to ask for next off the HDD. (It leaves some space empty in case it guessed wrong) But if it is wrong, that superfetched data in RAM doesn't get written into the swap on the HDD..it just gets wiped quickly from the ram to free up space for whatever you did pull into ram.
I'm not so sure about that. What I have read seems to suggest that the prefetched material is swapped to disk if a memory-hogging program loads, and when it closes the prefetched items are fetched from the disk as soon as possible so that they are in memory when needed.
I've heard that as well. Who designed this crap. I don't understand why they would have to swap out superfetched data of potential future use and then swap it back on when memory is free? Then won't you have two copy of that data on your hdd? The original, plus the superfetched data they just swapped off. Why don't they just throw away the superfetched data and load it from the original like the first time? That would save one write cycle. How can people at SPCR be enthousiastic about an OS that promisses for more HDD noise?

vincentfox
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Post by vincentfox » Sat Feb 03, 2007 6:24 pm

The copy of Vista we are being offered at the University I work at is the "upgrade" version. And unlike XP, they take that seriously, meaning you must install XP on a system before installing Vista. WTF!??? Every time I need to wipe a system am I going to enjoy doubling man-hours? No!

The tough part for MS is not at all selling it as better than the competition, it's offering existing users *any* compelling reasons to upgrade. So far I haven't seen any.

AZBrandon
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Post by AZBrandon » Sat Feb 03, 2007 6:34 pm

Newegg: http://promotions.newegg.com/msvista/Vi ... ducts.html

Vista Home Basic: $94.99
Vista Home Premium: $119.99
Vista Business: $149.99
Vista Ultimate: $199.99

All appear to be the 32-bit OEM version. I find it amusing that NewEgg doesn't appear to even sell the retail version at all. All OEM, all the time!

nightmorph
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Post by nightmorph » Sun Feb 04, 2007 2:48 am

AZBrandon wrote:All appear to be the 32-bit OEM version. I find it amusing that NewEgg doesn't appear to even sell the retail version at all. All OEM, all the time!
You, uh, didn't look nearly hard enough. At all? Actually, I didn't even know about the promo website; I just scrolled down and clicked Software-->Operating Systems-->Microsoft.

Presto, 3 dozen versions of Vista on sale, including retail and OEM.

Vista is rather like Pokemon -- "Gotta catch 'em all!"

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Sun Feb 04, 2007 5:55 am

vincentfox wrote:The copy of Vista we are being offered at the University I work at is the "upgrade" version. And unlike XP, they take that seriously, meaning you must install XP on a system before installing Vista. WTF!??? Every time I need to wipe a system am I going to enjoy doubling man-hours? No!
Yeah, now they are sticking to their EULA. But there is already a reroute to your problem... Search it with google.
The tough part for MS is not at all selling it as better than the competition, it's offering existing users *any* compelling reasons to upgrade. So far I haven't seen any.
So don't upgrade. It's that simple. It's not like Microsoft is forcing you to upgrade.

From all the reviews I have seen, I have zero reasons to upgrade. Vista pretty much needs 3 or 4 gb of memory for the superfetch to really work. With 2gb, I'm better off with a XP. 64-bit version of Vista is still slower the 32-bit version in almost every benchmark. And unless you buy a retail version of the Vista, you are stuck with the 32-bit or 64-bit version you purchased as OEM. OpenGL is still horrible in Vista due to lack of proper drivers.

But the worst part imo is the whole ambiguity around the OEM-licensing. Because it really looks that, if you buy an OEM-version it's stuck to the motherboard you currently have. It looks like there won't be reactivations like there were with XP.

AZBrandon
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Post by AZBrandon » Sun Feb 04, 2007 9:38 am

nightmorph wrote:Presto, 3 dozen versions of Vista on sale, including retail and OEM.

Vista is rather like Pokemon -- "Gotta catch 'em all!"
Up at the top of the screen is a box labeled "Search". I put in Vista and it automatically goes to the site I listed. Anyway, I used your link and filtered it to just show the "Ultimate" versions and there is no retail version of Vista Ultimate available from NewEgg. It looks like the highest version they currently sell the retail copy of is Business.

CallMeJoe
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Post by CallMeJoe » Sun Feb 04, 2007 5:02 pm

AFAIK, Vista gives you the opportunity to take a fast Windows XP computer and pay Microsoft $100-$400 to slow it back down for you. Expect to need 1GB of RAM for your OS alone, 2GB if you want to run any applications.
DirectX 10 means you get to buy a >$400 video card to find out if it improves your gaming experience, once the games that require it are finally released. User Account Controls mean a lot more dialog boxes as you convince your OS that you really do want to install a non-Microsoft application.
DRM means fewer options for any digital media you have purchased that you want to use on your PC.
Improved security means that Microsoft wants to sell you One Care for $50/year to plug the holes they left in the system so that they could sell a One Care subscription for $50/year.
For me, Vista means that I'll be spending some time introducing myself to the Penguin, for when Windows XP support is discontinued.

floffe
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Post by floffe » Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:07 pm

AZBrandon wrote:Up at the top of the screen is a box labeled "Search". I put in Vista and it automatically goes to the site I listed. Anyway, I used your link and filtered it to just show the "Ultimate" versions and there is no retail version of Vista Ultimate available from NewEgg. It looks like the highest version they currently sell the retail copy of is Business.
Second one for me: "Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate DVD - Retail" $378.99

nightmorph
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Post by nightmorph » Mon Feb 05, 2007 12:36 pm

CallMeJoe wrote:AFAIK, Vista gives you the opportunity to take a fast Windows XP computer and pay Microsoft $100-$400 to slow it back down for you. Expect to need 1GB of RAM for your OS alone, 2GB if you want to run any applications.
DirectX 10 means you get to buy a >$400 video card to find out if it improves your gaming experience, once the games that require it are finally released. User Account Controls mean a lot more dialog boxes as you convince your OS that you really do want to install a non-Microsoft application.
DRM means fewer options for any digital media you have purchased that you want to use on your PC.
Improved security means that Microsoft wants to sell you One Care for $50/year to plug the holes they left in the system so that they could sell a One Care subscription for $50/year.
Heh, word. Preach it, brothah! I have lots of folks coming into my library to check out books on Windows and building your own computer, and they're mentioning Vista...the majority of 'em keep expressing the same worry that they'll have to dish out a second mortgage to finance a computer that will run Vista. The rest have just "heard about the new Windows" and want to know if they'll have to upgrade their computers. Answer is...yes, and you won't just be dishing it out for the new hardware.
For me, Vista means that I'll be spending some time introducing myself to the Penguin, for when Windows XP support is discontinued.
Why wait? Could get your feet wet a little earlier. Y'know, the penguin really is pretty friendly. ;)

AZBrandon
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Post by AZBrandon » Mon Feb 05, 2007 2:11 pm

floffe wrote:Second one for me: "Microsoft Windows Vista Ultimate DVD - Retail" $378.99
Yep.. shows up now! At the time I posted it, they did not have that version on their website. Odd that it has a black box too. ?? Anyway, I suppose it only makes sense that newegg would eventually stock it since they're supposed to carry all kinds of products anyway.

vincentfox
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Post by vincentfox » Mon Feb 05, 2007 4:24 pm

Erssa wrote:
vincentfox wrote:The copy of Vista we are being offered at the University I work at is the "upgrade" version. And unlike XP, they take that seriously, meaning you must install XP on a system before installing Vista. WTF!??? Every time I need to wipe a system am I going to enjoy doubling man-hours? No!
Yeah, now they are sticking to their EULA. But there is already a reroute to your problem... Search it with google.
The only "reroute" to that problem that I have seen, is to do a double-install of Vista, and don't activate it the first time. I think you have missed the essential point of my observation, which has nothing to do with enforcing the EULA, it has to do with DOUBLING MIND-NUMBING OS-LOADING MAN-HOURS! If they asked me to feed it the old CD or a key from the old version that would be one thing, as that only takes a few minutes. The solutions of "load XP, then Vista" or "load Vista twice" are both equally unpalatable solutions to me. How many man-hours is that going to cost?

If you work in a place where gosh-darn-it people get viruses or the OS gets hosed or any of the other dozen things that go horribly wrong in Windows for which the only answer is "reload the OS", and you are told to do a clean install, well guess what that workload is now doubled. At least at my workplace, this thing is shaping up to be a nice disaster, as we have dozens of little fiefdoms at Unversities and IT policies all over the map, unlike in business.

CallMeJoe
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Post by CallMeJoe » Mon Feb 05, 2007 5:26 pm

nightmorph wrote:Why wait? Could get your feet wet a little earlier. Y'know, the penguin really is pretty friendly. ;)
I am starting to experiment with the Penguin; I'm checking out openSuse, Fedora and Ubuntu. I have to iron out a software/hardware glitch I hit trying to multi-boot my Win XP machinewith Linux (too complicated to go into here, though I'm sure it has a simple solution waiting to be found).
vincentfox wrote:If you work in a place where gosh-darn-it people get viruses or the OS gets hosed or any of the other dozen things that go horribly wrong in Windows for which the only answer is "reload the OS", and you are told to do a clean install, well guess what that workload is now doubled.
QFT. I just wasted too much time this past weekend resurrecting a crashed WinXP box without having to double load the OS.

frostedflakes
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Post by frostedflakes » Mon Feb 05, 2007 10:00 pm

FWIW I've been using Vista 32-bit (was able to get it through my university at no charge, so I figured why not) and have been pretty pleased with the speed and stability. It's not like my computer is anything special either. Once 3rd parties get their driver and software issues ironed out everything should be fantastic.

64-bit is supposed to offer some very good security features as well. Will probably start using that as soon as driver support stops being crap.

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Wed Feb 07, 2007 1:24 am

vincentfox wrote:I think you have missed the essential point of my observation, which has nothing to do with enforcing the EULA, it has to do with DOUBLING MIND-NUMBING OS-LOADING MAN-HOURS!
No, I didn't miss it. The "DOUBLING MIND-NUMBING OS-LOADING MAN-HOURS!" are a direct result of the enforcement of the EULA. If you don't like it, then buy the retail version instead of trying to save couple of $ with the upgrade version.
If they asked me to feed it the old CD or a key from the old version that would be one thing, as that only takes a few minutes. The solutions of "load XP, then Vista" or "load Vista twice" are both equally unpalatable solutions to me. How many man-hours is that going to cost?
One or two hours? But, if that is an issue, then buy the retail version, problem solved.
If you work in a place where gosh-darn-it people get viruses or the OS gets hosed or any of the other dozen things that go horribly wrong in Windows for which the only answer is "reload the OS", and you are told to do a clean install, well guess what that workload is now doubled. At least at my workplace, this thing is shaping up to be a nice disaster, as we have dozens of little fiefdoms at Unversities and IT policies all over the map, unlike in business.
If your workplace has dozens of computers, that could theoretically need a reinstall, then why not create image of the hard drive and reload it in case of emergency? I think the time it takes to install windows is nothing compared to the time it takes to install all the necessary programs.

z3r0
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Post by z3r0 » Wed Feb 07, 2007 2:09 pm

Ubuntu, and using Automatix to install all the hard stuff is a good way to get a fully working OS with out compiling anything.
Automatix basically it makes it easy to install non free things mostly media codecs that can not be included for legal reasons, and other items that are not included due to philosophical reasons. If you want some extra eye candy you can install beryl open gl desktop. But get used to installing stuff under the command line first, aka copying and pasting directions from websites into the command line. :P

Open SUSE and Fedora core are also good (free) Distros, just Ubuntu was the one that decided to work on my computer. :)
And stick with the 32 bit versions for now, unless you really like trouble shooting.

Ohh and windows vista meh, ill start giving a dam in a couple years when I build a new computer.

pod03
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Real benefits of readydrive?

Post by pod03 » Thu Feb 08, 2007 10:01 am

For those that have used Vista, what benefits in noise and energy consumption (e.g. laptop battery life) have been experienced from readydrive? Are there noise or energy downsides to Vista? E.g. are energy benefits of readydrive balance by energy used by extra ram? What are the energy consumption effects of running Aero?

Lawrence Lee
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Post by Lawrence Lee » Thu Feb 08, 2007 10:18 am

Don't you need a hybrid drive to make use of ReadyDrive? Are they even out yet?

Erssa
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Post by Erssa » Thu Feb 08, 2007 11:02 am

Amourek wrote:Don't you need a hybrid drive to make use of ReadyDrive? Are they even out yet?
Did you mean ReadyBoost? If you didn, then the answer is no. Usb flash drives can do the job just fine. ReadyBoost could be a bit redundant, if you have lot's of memory, but with a laptop, it could really speed things up...

Rusty075
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Post by Rusty075 » Thu Feb 08, 2007 12:48 pm

The amount of FUD about Vista that gets passed around is pretty staggering. just to clear a few things up:

-The EULA for Vista is almost identical to that for XP. Under XP's eula you were required to have an MS OS installed before installing an "upgrade" edition. Under Vista the OS just now checks to see if that's true. If you want a clean install a simple method has been provided to do that. Installing Vista on a clean drive takes 10 minutes. Not exactly "hours and hours" of extra work.

-The OEM versions have always been for "one system only". That's not new either, so quit twisting your panties over it. You will still be able to reactivate your OEM copies multiple times, just like with XP.

-Superfetch does not write data to the HDD's swap file. That would defeat the whole purpose. I can say from experience that the HDD swap gets used less under Vista than it did under XP (on the same machine)

-You do not need more RAM under Vista than you did with XP. The rules are about the same: 512 is bare minimum, and 2gb's is about the sweet spot for performance/cost. What confuses people is that they install Vista and see that the Task Manager says that they are using 60% of their 2gb's of ram while idling at the desktop. "OMG Vista's a RAM hog!" No, that's the Superfetch in action. It will always fill up most of the RAM, even when you are not doing anything. Fire up an application and the total RAM in use doesn't go up...Superfetch dumps some of its ram-cache to make room.

Ok, end of anti-anti-vista rant. :lol:

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Post by qviri » Thu Feb 08, 2007 12:59 pm

Rusty075 wrote:-You do not need more RAM under Vista than you did with XP. The rules are about the same: 512 is bare minimum, and 2gb's is about the sweet spot for performance/cost.
That's pretty strange, because I saw XP (SP1) running on 128 MB of RAM, although it was a painful sight indeed. On 256 MB it is agreeable, if still slow. Look at all the cheapo laptops that got sold in 2005 with 256 MB of RAM... they still work.

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Post by Beyonder » Thu Feb 08, 2007 2:28 pm

qviri wrote:
Rusty075 wrote:-You do not need more RAM under Vista than you did with XP. The rules are about the same: 512 is bare minimum, and 2gb's is about the sweet spot for performance/cost.
That's pretty strange, because I saw XP (SP1) running on 128 MB of RAM, although it was a painful sight indeed. On 256 MB it is agreeable, if still slow. Look at all the cheapo laptops that got sold in 2005 with 256 MB of RAM... they still work.
I think you and Rusty are saying the same thing, more or less--XP "works" with 256 MB of RAM, but let's not beat around the bush: it sucks to actually try and do anything of any real significance.

XP with 256 MB of RAM is not fun. Even hacking out unused services on a clean install, I never managed to get XP to use less than 70 MB, which left ~180 for other "stuff." Fire up office, a few internet browser windows and maybe an IM client, and it'd be cruising into virtual memory in no time. Gaming? Forget about it. I started out with a laptop that had 256, but I quickly bumped it to 512 because 256 was too restrictive and I was always going into virtual memory.

XP with 512 is tolerable. XP with a gig (two if you're uber-user) is ideal. In using Vista, not much has changed for me. I have a Vista computer with a gig, and it feels about right, although two would be better. 512 is tolerable. Less than that sucks.

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