Microsoft’s next major operating system looks different from the Windows you may be used to. But the parts of it you can’t’ see might be even more important.
It has just been over 10 years since Microsoft launched Windows *8 to great fanfare (whoa a task bar 😉 )Now, as Microsoft prepares its next major operating system launch, scheduled for roughly the end of 2006, an appropriate theme song might be “The Security Blues”
Microsoft is focusing a lot of effort on securing users from the legion of viruses, worms and other malicious attacks that have become such a problem in the last decade.
But security isn’t the only focal point of Windows Vista. Also included are additional gaming features, a stronger desktop search function, a reworking of the graphical user interface, compatibility with high-definition TV and other multimedia tie-ins.
What’s more, Vista is the first mainstream OS from Microsoft built to handle 64-bit applications. The new OS should combine with the latest CPU’s to improve gaming, system performance and of course security.
Of course, exactly what Vista will include will remain in flux. Among the rumours that Microsoft wont comment on: Vista may ship in several different version ranging from an ultra stripped down version for Third-World countries to a full-featured edition. Not everyone sees such an arrangement as a good idea.
Right now, Microsoft has lots of concerned customers, primarily because Windows is a favourite target for malicious code writers. Vista aims to stop attacks in a number of innovative ways. One is by making it easier to create ‘limited user’ accounts, which can be set to allow a user the most basic rights (the ability to download a graphics driver, but not install an application). In previous versions of Windows, only network administrators could control this.
Another way is by having the OS encrypt all the data on your hard drive by default-the first time Microsoft has offered this level of security. Vista will also isolate various applications and components, to is a virus comes in through IE, the amount of damage it can wreck throughout the os is limited. (one of the best features IMHO)!
If Windows Vista delivers on most of what Microsoft has promised, what the beta release suggests and what the rumours predict, it will be a dramatic upgrade. From I know so far, the out look of vista is pretty promising indeed.
Look out for my article before Christmas regarding the highs and lows of 2005’s IT