Mental Ward

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Vista=Big; XP=Small

So Microsoft, do you want more evidence of why people are, for the most part, shying away from Windows Vista and sticking with Windows XP? Consider this: I use a MacBook Pro as my main work machine. It has an Intel Core-Duo processor and 2 GB RAM. I use VMware Fusion to run my VMs. I've been doing some fiddling around today, and finding some rather shocking figures about Vista's resource usage compared to XP's.

For instance, loading Vista in the VM takes about 1:32 (averaging out multiple attempts). XP loads in about 36 seconds. But the bigger shocker is the load that each OS is putting on my processor. According to Activity Monitor (the Apple equivalent of the Performance tab in Windows Task Manager), Vista uses about 50 percent of my processor's power, on average. XP is averaging out to around 5-7 percent of my CPU's horses. When you multi-task the way I do, that's ginormous.

Given those stats, which OS am I more likely to load into the VM? That's what's known as a no-brainer. Of course, this doesn't mean that Vista is going to be that much more of a resource hog for everyone, but I think it's a telling bit of information. And last I saw, Service Pack 1 of Vista doesn't lessen its footprint, although a clever college student has managed to shrink the full Vista install down -- way down.

Here's hoping Microsoft translates some of its Server Core technology to the desktop, and we'll soon have Desktop Core.

Posted by Keith Ward on 02/06/2008 at 12:48 PM


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