Nvidia Fails The Vista Test

Nvidia is scrambling to improve the low performance of its graphic-card drivers on Windows Vista. The maker of the GeForce graphic processors and related daughterboard products has received lots of flack from gamers who say their computer games crashed as a result of Nvidia drivers that have proven to be incompatible with Microsoft's latest operating system. Nvidia has acknowledged that its Vista drivers haven't performed as well as they should, and said in an e-mail on Wednesday that driver development for Vista is "the highest priority in our company."

"We are working diligently to make sure we achieve and maintain the level of driver quality and reliability that Nvidia is known for," Nvidia spokesman Brian Burke said. "Over the coming weeks, Nvidia and our partners, along with the industry will continue to update Windows Vista drivers to ensure maximum performance on 3D applications and add feature support." Current Nvidia drivers designated as compatible for Vista include the v96.85 for GeForce FX Series, the v97.46 for GeForce 6 and GeForce 7 Series, and the v100.59 beta driver for GeForce6, GeForce 7 and GeForce 8800.

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News source: InformationWeek

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I have a 7800 GTX GO in my laptop and I am really unimpressed with driver support for laptop products. The current official release for GO products is 84.63 back from July 5, 2006. The last release before that if I remember came from December 05. Even if I wanted to upgrade to VISTA, there is not even a driver for mobile nvidia for VISTA users.

I'm glad this is being brought to light. It's the big reaons why I have yet to remove my dual book MCE 2005/Vista from my laptop. I noticed it back during the beta. Glitchy, blinking lines all over the desktop, games not playing as smooth in Vista, and problems with lines appearing in games like Company of Heroes.

And to all the laptop haters or ones who tell me to get a better systems, this is a Core Duo 2GHz, 2GB Ram, 7600 card, so it should be playing games better!

I have one major issue with Nvidia, they dropped support on a ton of products that are more than vista capable. It is not fair to some people that you have to use modded drivers just to play games. I understand that they want people to buy newer stuff but you cant expect people to shell out cash for vista and a new card unless you are buying a whole new system. I am not expecting old cards like a voodoo 3 by 3dfx to work with vista but I do expect support for at least the geforce fx 5 series cards and the nforce2 boards. Just because of the way this went down I will probably never buy an nforce chipset motherboard again and possibly not buy another Nvidia graphics card in the future.

ATI couldn't write a decent driver to save their lives. They have the worst drivers of any company and not just video related. Does anyone really use ATI??? And if you do, you have my pity. Rock On!!! :P

You have my pity waxman because you're obviously still stuck in the stone ages. ATI's drivers are currently much better than most and have been for years. I would choose ATI any day over nvidia.

ATI's drivers work perfectly with XP and Vista as well, never a problem for me; can't say the same for nvidia.

ANova said,
You have my pity waxman because you're obviously still stuck in the stone ages. ATI's drivers are currently much better than most and have been for years. I would choose ATI any day over nvidia.

ATI's drivers work perfectly with XP and Vista as well, never a problem for me; can't say the same for nvidia.

I wouldn't say for years. I remember the 7000/8000 series and the "once a year" driver updates to those cards. This was when I was told ATI was the best, but there driver support was shotty back then. They really didn't get better until the Catalyst collection debuted. And now, I'm concerned that AMD will take them down the drain.

Like technology trends, this always happens. One company does a better job than lags off compared to the other. It's a given.

I've been with ATI since the 9500 Pro four years ago and never once had a major problem with their drivers, only a couple minor ones. Nvidia fans have always whined about ATI's drivers while never actually trying them or giving them a chance. It was mainly over the CCC (which is not a driver) and which was never as bad as people made it out to be; sure it could have used some work in performance but it did what it was supposed to do and good alternatives were/are available.

ANova said,
I've been with ATI since the 9500 Pro four years ago and never once had a major problem with their drivers, only a couple minor ones. Nvidia fans have always whined about ATI's drivers while never actually trying them or giving them a chance. It was mainly over the CCC (which is not a driver) and which was never as bad as people made it out to be; sure it could have used some work in performance but it did what it was supposed to do and good alternatives were/are available.

But I've used both. And depending on the games, I usually prefer one over the other, but my point is, is that ATI never released many updated drivers within the product's first year to help address glitchy and crappy performance in games that were out at the time. NVidia was always on top of releasing a driver package every couple of weeks or so. Most of those games, from what I recalled were ones that were stamped with "Made for NVidia" on the box. They worked, but not as well as NVidia's and Nvidia's consistency at getting issues resolved.

But, I noticed massive improvements in the quality and consistancy when the Catalyst package came out. My 7000 and 8000 series cards performed flawlessly. And today, my 9800 Pro works beautifully in Vista.

Be thankful you drivers work at all. Good luck if you have a nforce4 ultra sata raid. I had to resort to some "legacy" drivers(read HACK) to even get to my raid.

Tell me about it. That's what I'm really waiting for. I have absolutely no problems with my x800, unfortunately I'm stuck on an nForce 4 board and I broke the legacy drivers and figured I'd just wait and grab the new official drivers when they came out... Hah, been waiting for about 2 weeks now.

nVidia has been known for their poor drivers quite some time already, but with Vista, they really reached a wholly new level of incompetence

I'm just damn glad I didn't get a 8800 but rather got a X1950 Pro until Ati's DX 10 cards are out.

There is no excuse for nVidia, they had since November to create drivers and they have failed quite badly. My 8800GTX feels the pain in Vista and these crappy .59 drivers.

MrCobra said,
They've had longer than November to get decent drivers.

I think the point was more to this effect: The RTM product has been out since November. Many 3rd party companies wouldn't develop drivers until the RTM product was done -- they didn't want to put out a driver release against non-RTM code. So that has given Nvidia since at least November to squeeze out a quality driver. A lot of verbal damage from the enthusiast community goes a long way... :P


Nvidia are on some crazy trip.

Whoever designed the control panel for nvidia wanted firing for the first point the opened their mouth with regards that waste of HDD space.

As for this lack of drivers... I personally think its not a case of having been lazy, I just think they don't know what they are doing. I think they are way over their head, and they are trying to rush products out.


Time to release a notice delaying nforce 1,2,3 drivers along with FX driver until further notice. and concentrate on decent 8800 drivers along with decent 680 drivers. Get their priorities right. They are there flagship products. Then 5,4 nforce chipsets. along with 6 and 7 series. They are trying to bite off too much at once.

Well done nvidia (y) you just taught me that you don't know what you are doing and to go looking at your competitor...

ccuk said,
Nvidia are on some crazy trip.

Whoever designed the control panel for nvidia wanted firing for the first point the opened their mouth with regards that waste of HDD space.

As for this lack of drivers... I personally think its not a case of having been lazy, I just think they don't know what they are doing. I think they are way over their head, and they are trying to rush products out.


Time to release a notice delaying nforce 1,2,3 drivers along with FX driver until further notice. and concentrate on decent 8800 drivers along with decent 680 drivers. Get their priorities right. They are there flagship products. Then 5,4 nforce chipsets. along with 6 and 7 series. They are trying to bite off too much at once.

Well done nvidia (y) you just taught me that you don't know what you are doing and to go looking at your competitor...

I don't believe it is right that you 8800 people should get the drivers first! We are the ones that have been waiting the longest for drivers and you just bought your cards. By the way, since DirectX 10 will be delayed until after SP1 (which probably means end of this year or beginning of next year) you have wasted your money big time and you deserve it for being so.....well you fill in the blank.

obsolete_power said,
I don't believe it is right that you 8800 people should get the drivers first! We are the ones that have been waiting the longest for drivers and you just bought your cards. By the way, since DirectX 10 will be delayed until after SP1 (which probably means end of this year or beginning of next year) you have wasted your money big time and you deserve it for being so.....well you fill in the blank.

Wow, are you for real? I would hardly call the 8800 a waste of money and the benchmarks prove it. They crush games now and they will crush them in the future.

I've been an ATI guy all these years and the 8800 has made me move to nvidia. Am I devastated that it doesn't work as expected in Vista?! No. Any early adopter of anything knows it takes a bit to get it right and a video card that supports technology that isn't even out yet is no different (besides it works amazingly under XP).

So what if I can't jump on the Vista bandwagon the heartbeat it comes out. I'm willing to wait for a driver that works properly and stick to XP until that happens.

Yeah it's only been out a few days and all of Microsoft's partners have had access to Vista code for 2 years. <g>

One word. Lazy!

I have a GeForce 6800 and with the default Microsoft drivers I sometimes get a 'Driver failed to respond and was successfully restarted" notice and with the Nvidia drivers I get terrible performance while using their Control Panel.

Strange, I'm running a 6800 as well on Vista and I haven't had any issues at all (latest drivers off of NVidia's site).

My sound drivers are another issue...