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Going the Vista Beta 2 experience [Update]
Posted by Arne Hess - at Friday, 26.05.06 - 15:01:00 CET under Digital - Gadgets - Viewed 15839x

All right, after Microsoft published the new Vista Beta 2 two days ago and a 15 hours download to get my copy from the Microsoft server, I'm now ready to install a German version of Vista Beta 2 on my development PC, which was my old test Media Center Edition PC so far. Wonder how/if it will works? At least - so far - the installation started, more or less, smooth:


I have only one "fear", that my graphic card isn't good enough, even if it was to run Windows Media Center Edition 2005. According to Microsoft's Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor, my ATI graphic card has 64 MB dedicated memory only, while Vista requires 128 MB. Well, I will see if I get anything on the monitor.

Okay, just in this moment, the PC did its first reboot and this worked fine so far... Stay tuned (if you want) for updates! :-)

UPDATE: So far so good and everything installed. Funny idea from Microsoft to deliver one Windows Vista ISO image which contains all Windows Vista versions. Based on your registration code, the installer will install the home or office version, etc.
I took the Windows Vista Home Premium because I want to test the new Media Center Edition of Vista as well - for sure.

The overall installation process went pretty fast and without any further problems. All the hardware, including 2 DVB-T TV cards, were identified correctly and works fine, some with the old Windows XP drivers, some with new Vista Beta drivers, pretty cool. The only problems I've stumbled across is that Microsoft seriously removed the Remote Terminal functionality in Home Premium which means, you can not remote maintain the system, for instance if it is in your living room where you don't want to sit in front of your TV. If you want to get MCE and Remote Terminal, you have to install the Ultimate Windows Vista version (which will costs "some" Euro more, for sure). This isn't smart at all and also VNC isn't working any longer, I've preferred to use anyway because VNC isn't shutting down the MCE UI but you can even use the MCE functionality remotely. So far, I've used UltraVNC, a pretty good VNC clone and while it still installs on the computer, the latency to get the picture back to your second PC is something around 20 seconds or so. I'm sure, the UltraVNC/some VNC developers will come back with a Vista compliant solution, sooner or later but as of now, no VNC version works proper with Vista.
Therefore I have to reformat my PC later again, to get Vista Ultimate installed since my MCE is connected to a standard PAL TV (I don't have a HD flat yet in my living room) and it's basically impossible to maintain a PC through a standard TV (wonder why the C64 worked so well with TVs ;-))

Cheers ~ Arne

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