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Vista Ultimate 32-bit OEM Review [lotsa pics]


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Update Feb/02/07: Installation post updated with Driver info and pics.


Hello all,


Here's my own little review on the Vista... got it firsthand, clean install, OEM ($250CAD including tax+shipping from NCIX.com), and Ultimate. Hope this thread can answer some of ur questions on Vista, and my own personal thoughts on this brand new system, starting from installation.... from a version that i actually bought from a retailer, not some version xxxxx release alpha beta gamma developer version etc etc....


the spec of the machine i will install this is on my sig, but here it is again:


DFI Lanparty Expert bios 04/06/2006

*NAKED* AMD X2 3800+ LCBIE 0618EPMW @2.97Ghz [330x9] 1.550V+102.4%

[Zalman 9700NT + Jing-Ting rev.2 Chipset Cooler]

2 x 1Gb OCZ Gold XTC pc4000@DDR495 3-4-8-3-1T - 2.71V

2 x eVGA 7900GT KO SC @650-1800 [sLI] 1.55Vcore

[AC Silencer 5 rev.3 modded]

2 x Seagate 7200.9 80Gb SATA2 8Mb @RAID-0 [cluster=4k]

1 x Seagate 7200.10 320Gb SATA2 16Mb

OCZ GameXstream 700W

Pioneer 8x DVR-107D DVD-RW

Creative Audigy + Logitech Z-5300

Windows XP Pro SP2


Edit: last note before i go on......this is NOT a Vista like-dontlike thread. this is not a you-should/shouldnt thread. this is also, NOT, a coulda-woulda-shoulda thread. this is a REVIEW thread for people who would LIKE to try Vista, but would like to know more, ask more, test more, inquire more.... NOT a bashing-defending thread. like it or not, i DONT care. but if you are somewhat, in any respect, interested, then feel free to discuss it here :)


Thank you


SOoooooo here we go :) This is only the preview ;)


First, the box which i just received :) woohoo!!

(ps: before i continue, u might wanna know i actually paid $0 for this coz i expense the cost to the office bwahahahahaha!)



OEM warning, naturally...



Review: The only difference i can think of is u can only install this on one computer and one computer only. Should u install new hardware, u would need to call Microsoft, whereas the Retail non-OEM u can just activate through the internet....

meh... $200+ for 5min phone call? count me in!


CD-Key on the Back... sorry if i went abit anal on the censoring... heh its Windows cd-key, should i explain more?



The front (its actually a manual, i flipped it) and the CD itself.... prettty :)



The manual itself... pretty...quality paper...coloured icon... blah... but still, a nice touch...



Review: Well actualy, my point is, it looks quite professional... Ive bought OEM harddrive and thats exactly what i got. a drive and the anti-static bag. period. ive bought OEM XP, and its still not as nice as a DVD case and a 40-page manual... Thats probably just me, but i appreciate the gesture on the *not-so-ugly* OEM package.


Well, i'll continue tonight as soon as i backup my current XP Installation and start the Vista experience!!

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I've spent hours and hours and GOD**** hours on looking the simplest, easiest, heck even possible way to install Vista on the RAID array. And trust me, its MORE SENSITIVE than the BETA. I've managed to install BETA on the RAID by Upgrading from X86 XP Pro SP2, but i couldnt do it here for 2 reasons: the BETA-2 Nvidia SATARaid driver that u used to load in a floppy doesnt work anymore. Why? i dont know. Once i get a *modified* (more to that later) driver, i still couldnt install it coz of the point above: Set Boot wasnt enabled coz i got the other drives in the Silicon controller.


This means 2 things you need to prepare:



It is VERY important that if you want to install it on a SATA RAID array, that you removed all other harddrive. Reason being, Vista will only be able to install in a drive that is set in the MBR (MainBootRecord) to be the MAIN boot drive.

b. This means, if you're installing on a RAID array, when you hit F10 to enter the Nvidia array utility (i can't find the correct set of driver to install on the Silicon RAID), you have to set your array to SET BOOT by hitting the B in the RAID main menu. If you have other harddrive connected to either the nvidia controller or the Silicon controller, the boot might say 'N/A', and the Set Boot button is "greyed out". You will NOT be able to install Vista this way. You can go all the way until finding the array in the Vista installation, but it will just say Vista cannot install to this partition.

c. If you're installing on a regular drive, it might not be the first drive Vista recognize, or worse, its not the drive set in the MBR to be the main drive.



Full credit to the peeps in NforcersHQ found at this link:


I didnt follow the procedure, but the reason i give them credit is i used their modified driver found half-way in their first post where it said Nforce SATA RAID Driver:

For X86

For X64 (this i didnt try)

*i'll zip the files later at home in a zip format. Above is in the .7z format*

Download the 3 files, drop it in a floppy, and you're good to go :)


(3.) Last but not least, alot of people find that it will work in a brand new empty partition. It might. But I can tell you for SURE that i just destroyed my RAID array, rebuild a new one, install Vista in that brand new formatted array, and it works too. It's up to you whether you want to dual-boot (IMO, i hate dual boot. i like fast boot.), then u need to prepare a partition, or if you just wanna plop it down on ur current partition.

IF you do want to create a new partition, the only warning is USE NTFS FORMAT ONLY!!!!. That's all :)


Now you're good to go.....................



1. First thing first (incase u skipped the Preparation steps above), make sure u HAVE set the partition on the harddrive you want to install Vista into to be the Main Boot drive and prepare the 3 files mentioned above in a floppy if you want to install in a RAID.

2. Second: I installed this on 2.97Ghz and it gave me a blue screen in the middle of an install. Dropped to 2.925 and it didnt. I've dual primed 2.97Ghz for 11hours straight.... Moral of the story is, BE CAREFUL ON YOUR OVERCLOCKING. If you're not sure, then don't. Drop it for now.

3. Set in BIOS what you need with the booting priority to set boot from DVD. Boot Vista from DVD...... Here we go :)


Basic stuff..... from here you got the Install Now screen, Enter CD Key, Accept Agreement,


then this screen...


Good to know, if you boot from the CD, u can only do Clean Install...



you get that screen if you have ur old array without loading any 3rd party driver. This is NOT the screen you want.

Before you do anything, click on Load Driver. Pop in the Floppy. Browse, and load.... If you un-select the Show compatible driver, it will show something like this,


Note, without the TWEAKED driver, selecting even ALL of these doesnt work at all... With the tweaked driver, if you click on the Show Compatible Driver Only, you'll see either 2 or 3, depending on your DFI model, items. select all of them. And click Next. Refresh.

NOW, you *should* see the array in there.


A blank one too.

Yessss, i said u should remove the other harddrives, thats why the screen above actually end up being failed... because when i clicked on it said Vista cant install on that 149Gb partition. When its set to boot, then it will be ok. Naturally, there's going to be only 1 drive there... and i was too happy that it worked that i didnt take a screenshot....


The rest is easy.

This screen is alittle under 10min on my system.....


...but this screen stays for about 15~20min...



Some little notes, my Copperhead seems to be acting just fine in the Installation process, but after first boot, i need to unplug and plug it back in to work... then afterward it never does that again...


Fingers crossed, at this point, you should be happy and creating your name and password.


it will then proceed to ask if you want to protect ur windows or not, whether its Home/Office/Public computer, then you get here:



Congratulation, you've finished installing Vista. The whole process took about 20~25min...


First impression? Pretty. The login screen, window animation, first look. All is good and a fresh new look to my whacked out XP for the last 5 years.....




Windows update immediately kicks in (then i assume Activation is done sometime in the background) the first time Vista booted.



oops, some failed ones??



stupid Nvidia... oh well.... carry on....


Everything in my hardware seems to be installed properly, i can't tell which driver is being used automatically, but my Geforce are noted and installed fine. Although SLI doesn't seems to be enabled as i couldnt find the option, DxDiag shows my Video memory is approximately 520Mb...... (that's 256-each x 2 btw). Windows update also shows a couple more option, including a new "Geforce7900GT/GTO driver" which i simply right click and select Hide because i want to install one manually, and an "Nforce4 PCIExpress root" which failed to install....

The first update also include the Marvel Ethernet and Silicon Image controller! Very nicely done and simple.


Once every updates and first setup is done, i got everything "working" (nothing on performance issues) except for the Audio.


Time to move in to the manual driver installs before we take a peek at all the nifty features.....


First off, Creative... i need to have music, no matter what :)


When i get there, i tried the Software Autoupdate, and everything seems to be working fine. IE7 is doing what its supposed to do, and no error or lag or anything disturbing pops out. I keep my fingers crossed. And then Creative Plug-in sets in, and aaah... the famous UAC warning :)


i said yes, and i decided for the sake of the review, i'll keep UAC for now. More on changing it and fooling around the Admin stuff....


Having past that, the Autoupdate did find my Creative BUT when i check for software update, it comes back to "server busy"? Oh well, i thought... tried it couple more times, and still no go. So i searched the driver manually, selected Creative Audigy for Vista x86, and driver (not manual or firmware or etc), and came up with 1 results: 2.12.0001 Dated Jan 12 2007

Note on driver:

My Audigy is an OEM "just Audigy". No Audigy EX or Music or Gaming or Platinum or anything else... Just like the driver page explains:

Supported Devices:

Creative Sound Blaster Audigy including Platinum and Platinum eX series

Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 including Platinum, Platinum eX, and Value series

Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS including Platinum and Platinum Pro series

Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 4 Pro and Sound Blaster Audigy 4

Creative Sound Blaster Audigy 2 ZS Notebook PCMCIA


it doesnt work with Audigy LS, SE, or Value. It says that it doesnt decode Dolby Digital, Dvd-audio(this proves to be wrong once i installed K-lite Codec pack), DirectSound-based EAX(havent install any games yet), Gameports (this Microsoft already confirmed, it just wont), and 6.1 (but 5.1 and 7.1 seesm to work). But i'll work something out later ;)


Downloaded, installed, and ask for restart.


I said no, later to restart, then i went to java.com, installed JRE6, and google'd Flash, installed that, all is fine and purrty...


Shuts down the computer, plug the rest of my harddrives, rebooted, and first thing is to check the 5.1. The Creative driver installed the control panel as well, so i tried from there first, and its all good. No error/BSOD so far!! when i tried opening the control panel on BETA/RTM it would crash! 5.1 is selected, and CMSS is off. kewl... :)



I also went to the control panel and open the audio, lo and behold, its there and the 5.1 is also selected and tested. neat.


Of course the only drawback is winamp, but more on that later :(


Next is to go to nvidia.com. Searched for Vista driver, x86, 7series, and voila, : 97.46 seems to be the only one to go.


Unfortunately, they only have the International version available on their site. I couldve gone to Guru3d.com and searched the same thing in much smaller package, but for this review, i'll try to use everything as default as possible... :) That's a huge 50MB downloads....


Installed, (strangely much longer to install than in Windows), now note that i didnt uninstalled the previous by-default driver, and then rebooted.


DxDiag still says 520Mb, but now no WHQL warning. So the WHQL seems to be working fine. Right click on the Desktop, and instead of Properties, they have Personalize. Right above it there's Nvidia Control Panel :) Which you can access from the Control Panel as well. More on those later.

Now its on the *new* mode that everyone (including me) hate so much, BUT, again, for this review, i'll keep it this way.


Its interesting to see in after i set Advanced mode, in the 3d settings, i see all the configurable usual settings, AA, AF, Vsync, the works, but NO SLI optioN!! Its not until i click on the Program Settings tab that it shows all the SLI profiles and their respective "Nvidia recommended" settings :) *phew....



At this point, everything is all fine and dandy. I tried checking Windows update again, and it shows no more important updates except for the language packs. Language packs?? is it just me or it sounds awfully like win98 lol


Oh, and i tried the System Performance Rating again with the new driver, doesnt seems to change at all. Still 5.4 on CPU, 5.9 on the rest of the stuff. Nice.




Installation done. Vista is up and running the way it should be BEFORE any extra appps (including any codec or even Winamp). If ive never heard of Vista before and it worked like this, i'll be happy.


Me = 1, BSOD = 0.

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Before installing more and more stuff, i like to get around with some of the basic features of Vista..... Here'r the screenshots and explanations on the features that i've tried so far. Also, note that UAC is still on, because im trying to mimick a n00b M$ users that has never ever tried or even heard of Vista.


More stuff will be added later.


Coming soon:

Admin stuff


Control Panel








GUI (copying/moving files, permissions, UAC, etc)


IE7 and GoogleSearch


Window Defender


Alt-tab 3D + Animated taskbar



Home Networking




Media (Video/Pictures) - WMP 11 vs Winamp/MediaPlayerClassic?

Update [Feb 7, 07]



Using Winamp.

I've been using winamp for the longest time. for some reasons, such as Shoutcast radio :), i despised WMP. So installed Winamp 5.32. No errors pop out, and all is well during installation. However, a few things are not working:

- 5.1 Audio

Using the same exact version in XP will automatically rendered any Stereo MP3 to my 5.1 speakers. In Vista, it does not. Even if in Control Panel, the speakers are tested and works on all 5.1 channel. And so i turn to Creative driver.

Turns out, using Creative's Control Panel, i had CMSS disabled. What CMSS is, in a nutshell, is up-mixing less than 4.1/5.1/6.1/7.1 audio to the config of your speakers. Now, when i installed Creative, i DID disabled this feature. Why? When CMSS is on, games that uses DxSound's audio positioning technology such as EAX wont work. Games that uses OpenAL, for example, is unaffected.

Now in Vista, according to Creative, the driver model is much different and EAX is NOT currently supported anyway, so disabling the CMSS doesnt have any effect here.

Enabling CMSS3D from Creative gives me back my 5.1 MP3s :)

- Dissappearing Media Library

In Vista, once i added my library to Winamp's Media Library, all is well until i shuts it down. When i turn it back on, the media is EMPTY. Frustrating, yes. Never happens in XP. After browsing around Winamp's forum, i found out yet another solution.

During Winamp install, when asked do you want to use Shared Settings, DO NOT leave it at default which uses Shared settings for all user. You HAVE to select using personal setting connected to this account. This will copy the settings u have to your own personal folder under your own account.


The next is not really a flaw, but actually a feature i missed in WMP. Winamp has a built in iPod support. Yes, if you use Winamp, if you plug-in your iPod, (or other MP3 player i assume) it wil show in Media Library under Portables. This saves me alot of trouble with my Shuffle as i dont need to install the cumbersome iTunes :)

WMP, unfortunately, does not have this feature.



But enough about Winamp. `There`s a reason i'm currently listening John Mayer at the moment using WMP.... Time to talk about WMP 11 and why i think its a much better player than its older brothers....


Windows Media Player


- Library.

Yes, it has a much better library system that can store any kind of media you have. It shows it under many categories which you can index, create playlist, and much more. And best of all, the search function here (just like the Search in Window's main bar), is bloody freakin fast. Compared to WMP9 and 10 that is ;)

The library has categories of the regular Artist, album, songs, and even contributing artist, composer, parental rating and folder, on Audio alone... Which you can search from...

Yes, once i loaded my 3000+ MP3 (hey, ive been buying MP3 since napster was born!) and a couple of videos, typing just the name in any category will shows the results INSTANTLY. and that is an understatement. Its bloody fantastic. Which brings us to...

- Performance.

At around 14~15MB, its not that big. Internet Explorer 7 for example, pass the 16Mb mark once i opened another tab.... This is much different than WMP9, which once loaded with my medias, can leaves a footprint of about 45Mb!! Clicking on the quickbar, or the menu, will instantly opens WMP. In comparison, WMP10 in XP takes a good 4~5 seconds to shows up. Winamp takes about 5~10 if MediaLibrary sub-window is opened as well. Select the "watch folders" in preference, ull be looking at 10+ seconds.... Very good!

- MSN Plugin.

Ah, yes, its been around, but its just me i guess. I like MSN Messenger. and having to show the current playing title as my nickname's extension is pretty darn cool, and now i have less and less buddy asking "hey, watsup, man?"...


But enough about good stuff. Lets talk about the bad stuff too....

- Media Guide

Doesnt really much changed from the older version. its basically a browser extension, which shows utterly ugly quality of videos, and their selections and browser for Radio station is a farcry from ShoutCast radio....

- Visualization

Dont even try installing one. period. it may works, but in my case, once i select back one of the standard one, it will crash. And the standard one sucks. Winamp has much much better and prettier one.

- iPod.

Yes, ive mentioned it and ill mention it again. Winamp has a great feature where u can drag and drop and manage ur Portable MP3 players. WMP does not. boo! Yes, there is a 'sync' option, but it does not detect my iPod. The options shows all the devices connected to my computer: My 2 DVD drives, my monitor, and my speakers. WTH???

- Rip and burn is basically the same with previous WMP. It works, but if u get a free Nero with that new DVD-RW, use it.


That's it for Audio. Lets check the other side of the fence on the pretty world of Media...



oooh can i continue WMP's negative points here?? Well, as usual, "automatically downloading the appropriate codec" never works. I end up getting the latest K-lite Codec Pack Mega, which, oh, hey, it comes with Media Player Classic!


Time to play some movies ;)


First point is, once the codec is installed, both WMP and MPC works just fine. I can view .avi's, .MKVs, even .ogg... I can view XVID content, DVIX, even x264!

720p videos content and 1080p content downloaded from Windows Media website plays great on both player, BUT, it seems to have an average CPU usage lower on MPC... Ever so slightly.


Second, and this is kinda frustrating, screensaver will kick in if you watch movies using MPC. It wont if you play with WMP. damn it. I'm yet to find a solution for this...


Last but not least, i watch alot of Anime. And i dont know about u, but my japanese sucks. And i also hate dubbed animes. just hate them. This points to one important feature: subtitles. Without getting too much details, it works much much better in MPC. Getting a subtitiles in WMP, not to mention tweaking it for positioning, or loading a custom subtitle file, is simply not possible.


And that's it on Video......


which currently concludes all i have to say on Video and Audio media.

Audio* Simply because I'm a premium member of sky.fm, and there's a link for WMP stream, and their Library management is great, im using WMP now. Plug my iPod, and ill use Winamp. Troublesome, but i can live with that for now.

Video* I disabled the Screensaver and use Media Player Classic that comes with K-lite Codec Pack found in www.codecguide.com.




Last but not least,


Pictures :)


Aaah.... Windows Photo Gallery. Such a big feature M$ is boasting with Vista..... .And here's my review of it....




before we get to that, lets observe the following picture:


Left is on the background, middle on WPG, right on Paint...



Now tell me, am I just colour blind or the middle picture is heavily saturated and it just looks downright awful?


Okay, didnt really start in the right foot there....... fortunately though, couple days ago, ....



I just worked out a solution in Windowshelp's tech support forum about the problem above... Apparently some monitor (including my Samsung205BW) by default will have the INCORRECT Colour profile installed by WindowsUpdate. The solution basically branched out to whether u have Photoshop or not. I don't wanna retype everything here again so here's the quote...


First off, there r 2 solutions i discovered...one is if u have Photoshop

installed, the other if you don't.


If you do have, in Control Panel, there's an Adobe Gamma tool. Run it by

step-by-step wizard (or by Control Panel if u know what u'r doing) and create

ur own Profile. Name it anything, i name mine Vista-1 just so its easier to

see. It will create an ICM profile immediately installed in Window's

system32-spool-color folder (given u dont change the saving location. better

yet, dont even try.). Done?

Back in Vista's control panel, open the Colour Management tool. In there

u'll see the default ICC profile, mine named Samsung - Natural Color Pro 1.0

ICM, file name SM205BW.icm since my monitor is a Samsung 205BW. Click on

Add.., and if you scroll down, u'll see ur profile; again, mine said Vista-1.

U might need to click on Browse.. if u dont see yours becoz u saved it

somewhere else...

[Now, this part i'm not sure whether u need to do it, but i did it

anyway.... Click on the Profiles button on the right bottom corner and click

on Combine My Settings with System Defaults. then...]

Click OK, and click on Vista-1 and click on Set as Default Profile. Click



Now try opening a picture in WPG :)


Ooops, almost forgot, for people who doesnt have Photoshop, u can google any

free ICC profile or go to:


Download these free ICC, and install some..or..well... i tried installing

all of them anyway... Just extract them, then right click and select



Now go to Vista Control Panel, open Color Management, and click on Add...

Scroll down and all of the installed ICC should be there. Pick one and set it

default. [Again, u could click on Profiles and select Combine My Profile...

but im not sure about this.] Click Close and you're good to go.


Of course if it still shows the wrong colour just pick a different ICC and

try it. First ICC i tried is the Adobe1998 one and it seems to be working

fine... Of course im no expert and if any of u experts sees the better ICC in

there (there r like 10~15 of them in the ZIP), by all means correct me.


THat's all.


Hope that helps :) :) :)


Link to M$ Technet my post on page 2, hit More... on the bottom to see any updated replies on that thread... :)


There we go....


Now we got that out of the way, lets REALLY start talking about WPG, or Windows Photo Gallery.



Remember that Windows Fax and Image Previewer back in XP? It's exactly like it is, but on steroid. My oppinion? Not enough dosage, but...meh.. its good enough.


Once you open a folder with Picture in an Explorer in Vista, by default it will open using WPG Previewer. Yes, this is NOT WPG yet, its the previewer. Few features I like to go through here before we actually go to the WPG are the options you will see on the top.

-Fix. Holy...crap. And thats a bad crap. Okay, here's why: so you got Auto Adjust, Exposure, Color, Crop and Fix Red Eye. Hey! That reminds me alot with MS Office Fax and Picture Editor! Except, the most important and crucial i use when editing pictures from my digital camera... RE-freakin-SIZING!!! I dont need a 2Mb JPEG when i want to send it through email! Bad, Bill, bad! Which brings us to the next one...

- Email.... hmm interesting. When i searched the help topic on WPG about resizing, it said use the Email function to resize...... umm ok, but what if I haven't got my email setup yet??? Well, the Outlook Express startup Wizard will pop out.... ugh. Not nice, but ok, i'll setup my Hotmail account in there.... "Windows no longer support the HTTP servers used by Hotmail and other web-based....."


wow.... wait.. hold the freakin minute. Wat the HELL?????


Not happy.


So, apparently, there's no resizing, except going through email, which you will need to have an Exchange server mail or POP3 from your ISProvider......


Okay, lets open it with Paint. Click Image... Click Resize... 50%. OK. voila.


Paint: 1, WPG: -100.





Lets go back with the review shall we?

- Burn.

Interesting. I dont feel like trying it, but if it works the same way with WMP's Burn feature, thats nice...

- Make a Movie.

Now, why, oh why, do i need this button on the Previewer? Oh well, everyone for himself i guess....

- Next/Preview/Slideshow button

We cant surely forget about the buttons on the bottom. Which works quite nicely i might add. But too late. Im already bitter with the absent of the resizing button.

- Last but not least, left most button is the Go To Gallery......


right, now we're really going to Windows Photo Gallery.... (maybe they have a resizing tool there?)


Oooh.... very nice...... It realy reminds me of Windows Media Player's Library!


On the left, you see all the menu on

- All Pictures and Videos

- Recently Imported: oh this is cool.

- Tags: cool, but i dont really see a major use of this

- Date Taken: Finally!! very nice MS!

- Ratings: but of course...

- Folders: Not forgotten. Good.


The right window will have all the thumbnails of all the pictures you have filtered through the menu on the left. Very nice and grouped by default by either Date or Folders. A very cool addition is if you hover your mouse, you will have an exploded view of the thumbnail in a very good quality too! This helps!


Not to forget the standard next/previous/slideshow buttons on the bottom.


But...... where's the resizing??


Fine, i'll drop that subject.


Last point i make: Performance. Remember how i praise the instanteneous (did i spell that right?) search function? Its back here too! :) Searching for pictures is MUCH easier and faster than XP. Very good!


In summary, WPG is a very nice tool. It really helps sorts out your pictures and preview them. It helps you manage and organize by different filters, and it even has a tiny toolkits on fixing red eyes, a bit of contrast, or even exposure, but unfortunately, there's no resize EXCEPT when you're going to email it. Why is that?

This is why I still ends up using Paint on a few basic editings. Shouldnt you t hink by now M$ should be able to tell that people use Paint alot? Imagine merging WPG with Paint...... that will be great!

I mean, i did spend $250 for this thing... and i cant resize my pics??




And, for the last time, that's it on my review on the Media. It has a few flaws here and there, but an overall satisfying experience. Many players and tools are comparably better than XP, and much prettier to boot, but in the end of the day, once you want to have more done, you'll still resort to 3rd party programs....


Time to install Photoshop!!! :)


but that's not part of this review ;)


More parts will come later!

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*reserved number three*

Note to self: Keyboard English/French going back n forth with Ctrl-Shift.... ugh....


3Dmark06 - version 1.1.0 only!!

Oc tool - Ntune 5.05.25 - Jan 25, 2007




Update [Feb 07, 07]:

With Driver 97.46, SLI is not yet supported for 7series. 100.59 supports SLI of 8800series on Dx9 games, but still nothing for the 7 series. and its BETA. WHQL for the 8series will come at the end of this month, and SLI for 7 series will come at March. Got it from theinquirer.net interview.


Forgot to mention: Ntune VGA overclocking is disabled. Nvidia is also working on a driver that can utilize this....


Early results

My 3dmark06 is approximately 5800. Stock - SLI. Same config yields around 6000 in XP using a singlecard or SLI is disabled. So performance doesnt seems to loose alot.


HDtach shows my RAID-0 having 90-ish MB/s burst with 77Mb/s Average. more or less CPU usage. In XP, i got 300+MB/s burst with 60~65Mb/s. Both aRE on the same array using 4k clusters.

Drivers are the one that comes with Vista (except for the RAID, naturally).


Nvidia released a new drivers for Nforce, but once installed, it reboots before it hits the login screen. Using 'Last Known Good Config' from the safe boot options, everything was undo'd and all is well again. Will try to get it installed.

Note that i do not feel any *sluggish* performance even using the driver that comes with Vista. Opening windows, copying files, extracting archives, starting media or office programs, is as responsive, if not better, than in XP.



Finally got it installed. First run the setup.exe until it extracted all the necessary files, then ur presented with the menu. Then just exit out. Under Hardware Manager, go to the Storage Controllers, and update (the only one if u have drive on port 1 and 2 only, or both if u have drives on port 3 and/or 4) the Nforce4 Serial ATA Controllers. Go to the properties, Drivers, update driver. Go to the Nvidia extracted folder, IDE folder, and installs them. x86 will have WHQL, x64 will get the non-WHQL warning. then reboot.


if youre on RAID, once its rebooted, it will automatically installs the RAID controller. Reboot after its done. Now ur updated.


Some proves to see some noticeable difference, i didnt. but its already quite responsive to begin with anyway...


And also now you can view the SATA Controllers under IDE controllers in Hardware Manager, and u can do the nvidia speed test from there ;) (except for the RAID'd drives, of course)



That's all for now, folks :)

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as far as i understand, Retail will allow you to activate the Vista on a totally different PC with the condition YOU REMOVE IT FROM THE OLD ONE. Activates automatically thro the net no problem. Multiple times too. Just not 2 at the same time, naturally.


OEM will allow u to activate thro the net infintely too, BUT you can NOT have a major hardware change more than 5 times. If you do, you will require to call in Microsoft support. Toll free. spend like 5 minutes.


Also, these rules will change through time as it just did with XP's authentication updates recently....seems like too many peeps complained on the too-strict definition of "major hardware change" and so MS is gving some kind of tolerance and kinda tweak the rules abit...


so by the time u finished reading this post, it might be difference ;)


my point is, however, for a much much cheaper price, u will be slightly inconvenienced. that's all. the rest depends on ur wallet and ur patience.


64-bit? hmm u sure u wanna go that way? :D

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would get vista on to go 64 bit,but reading here and else where,seems vista 64 is a big pain at moment with drivers support and other probs


To my suprise after reading tons of articles on the web about what a pain vista x64 is. I have had it installed since last Friday on the system in my sig and things have been working out fine. The performance in vista is another story. But most of the drivers were in the install DVD. My main concern was running 32 bit applications on it. All the 32 bit apps that I use on a daily basis are working fine. I installed Steam for HL2 and it automatically installed HL2 and Lost Coast in 64bit and the performance is not too shabby. Episode 1 and Battlefield 2142 are running fine in 32 bit = ). 64 bit firefox is cool. Still not sure about Vista in general. If I decide to keep Vista.....it will be x64. If not that it will be back to XP.

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To my suprise after reading tons of articles on the web about what a pain vista x64 is. I have had it installed since last Friday on the system in my sig and things have been working out fine.


That's good news uneedav8. I've checked my hardware and see drivers available in 64bit versions


How well they work is always another story.


Do I understand you correctly that you've installed 32bit apps on your 64bit OS and they run fine?


That would also be good news.


I've always wanted to upgrade to 64bit just to try it out. I've seen other get good results.


To be honest though I know little about it, obviously.

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