I wasn’t planning on picking up Vista.  XP does fine, it’s not perfect but nothing really worth switching my desktop to linux over.

However a month ago I read a very informative article at ExtremeTech which went through some of the detailed changes under the hood, and I’m now officially excited.  I just hope it doesn’t cost too much, as the features in the “ultimate” edition seem more geared toward gamers such as myself – but it’s also going to be the uber expensive swiss army knife edition. 
The lack of remote desktop alone will keep me away from the home editions, so ultimate looks like the only one that’ll satisfy me.

I’m running Beta 2 on my PC, and aside from UAC being far too intrusive it runs quite well.  The most surprising thing is the improved swapfile management – yes Vista uses 800mb+ in normal usage, but on a 1gb system it’s nowhere near as slow as XP gets when programs use that much ram.  In fact the only thing stopping me from running it as my primary system is a bug in the nvidia drivers that prevent some games from running in widescreen – I’ve been too lazy to migrate when I have to boot into XP so
much 😦

I decided to run the x64 version for the moment as all of my hardware has drivers, and it’s something of a tradeoff.  Paul Thurrott has the details, and while the security features sound worth it the loss of compatibility will probably bite.  I’m leaning towards my current setup, dual-booting Vista x64 with XP.  Maybe with RC1 I’ll try the 32-bit version and see if I can find anything that works there, but not in x64.  Still
plenty of time to make a decision on that.

Much like the Office 2007 beta, I’m a huge fan of the new UI.  I’ve seen plenty of comments towards both that dismiss them as gimmicks, but anyone who says that needs to sit down, use them and then try to come up with a reasonable argument.  I find Word and Outlook far easier to use than the old interface I’ve known since Word 6.0, and Vista is growing on me too.

To me, these changes are like the XP start menu or switching to OS X – things are different, but if you stick with it and try it the way the designers intended you find things are actually better.

(side note: I actually hate the old pre-XP start menu now, because I have to show desktop just to open the my computer window).