Microsoft Claims Vista's Aero Interface Doesn't Slow PCs


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Boeing 787

http://www.techweb.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=196800080

Running Windows Vista's new Aero graphical interface doesn't impact PC performance, a study sponsored by Microsoft claims.

According to speed measurements of more than 60 common business chores, which were conducted by North Carolina-based Principled Technologies for Microsoft, using the Aero interface "had little or no negative effect on Windows Vista's performance."

Matt Ayers, a program manager with the Windows Client Performance team, touted the results on the group's blog. "We put quite a bit of effort into making sure that the new visuals were as efficient as possible, and it really paid off," he wrote. "You can run Aero without guilt!"

Principled Technologies measured performance with Aero on and off using a Dell XPS M170 notebook equipped with 1 Gbyte of RAM, a 2.0-GHz Intel Pentium M 750 single-core processor, and a graphics card with 256 Mbytes of memory. The laptop's configuration met or exceeded Microsoft's own minimum system requirements for what it calls a "Vista Premium Ready PC," which is a system with sufficient horsepower to run Aero. Those requirements, for example, specify a graphics card with at least 128 Mbytes of memory.

Aero, which can be disabled by the user, is automatically ditched for a simpler, Windows XP-style interface, when Vista is run on lower-powered PCs.

The Vista performance report can be downloaded as a PDF file from here

The problem for me in the long run is what happens when Aero glass gets boring, with Windows XP you could change the theme.

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Koolslacker

I have been using Vista and I don't really have any problem with Aero, but I am not a gamer.

hardgiant: I am sure we will be able to change the themes in Vista.

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d3nuo

well i've seen no performance loss from running aero. i could possibly see it on the bottom of the bucket video card (lowest officially supported) but on anything but, i don't think the interface would cause any adverse performance loss

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[Fosters]

Whoever said Aero that makes your computer slower?

All I have read is that it makes your system faster because Aero moves the rendering process from your main CPU to the graphics card thereby free the CPU to do more work and improving overall system performance.

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I am Reid
well i've seen no performance loss from running aero. i could possibly see it on the bottom of the bucket video card (lowest officially supported) but on anything but, i don't think the interface would cause any adverse performance loss

I run aero perfect with out one single porblem on an x300

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Diffused Mind

Aero isn't very demanding.

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InternalStorm

It's definately not slower. It can "lag" slightly if you have low end graphics when doing flip 3D, but if you have a decent mid range card it just flows like butter. Everything is quite seemless and feels snappier than even XP. I love how the interface is drawn by the GPU ;)

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PyX

It's not slower, it uses the GPU... finally... even a Vista hater like me can accept this claim from M$ :p

Classic doesn't use the GPU though (I think...), so I have NO FREAKING idea why they included this.

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XIII

If you pay attention to the article, you will see the catch: the test is conducted by using

common business chores
.

Usually, these applications put very little stress on the GPU and more CPU-dependent.

However, if you play GPU-hardware-decoding movies and games, the performance loss will be very devastating.

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Smigit

Well why would it be slower? Isn't it more or less unloaded when a fullscreen game is loaded up.

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Xerxes
Classic doesn't use the GPU though (I think...), so I have NO FREAKING idea why they included this.

Classic is mostly for people who don't have a GPU powerful enough to run Aero (it [classic] is also the only GUI interface available in Vista Starter and Home Basic doesn't have the full Aero either, but it has Aero basic or whatever the none glass one is called now?) However, there are also users who prefer the old "classic" GUI and don't want Aero, so it caters for them also.

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Jakanori
The problem for me in the long run is what happens when Aero glass gets boring, with Windows XP you could change the theme.

The latest Windowsblinds apparently works in Vista if you want to change themes. I think I read on Wincustomize that Stardock has more to come for Vista :)

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1Frothy

Is this a study sponsored by the same company that said that customers can use Windows Vista securely without Antivirus software? OR did I imagine it.

The infrastructure behind Aero uses a lot more resources than the infrastructure behind "Luna" so on a computer with borderline RAM Aero will clearly slow down the computer.

Then again if Microsoft paid me many Million$ then I'd be happy to say that Aero doesn't slow down computers, also.

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Brandon Live
Is this a study sponsored by the same company that said that customers can use Windows Vista securely without Antivirus software? OR did I imagine it.

Microsoft never said anything of the sort. Jim Allchin said that he personally lets his son use Vista with strict parental controls and no A/V software. He was not speaking on behalf of Microsoft and he definitely did not say that consumers should not use antivirus software.

The infrastructure behind Aero uses a lot more resources than the infrastructure behind "Luna" so on a computer with borderline RAM Aero will clearly slow down the computer.

If a system has very little memory, Vista will not enable Aero by default. Aero uses slightly more memory than Basic or Classic modes, but uses less CPU for sure. Unless your system is starved for system or video memory, it should be a performance increase, if anything.

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Fourjays

Isn't it cheating a bit to have a system with 1Gb RAM, a 2Ghz processor and a 256Mb Graphics Card? Apart from gaming PCs, very few computers with 1Gb RAM and a 2Ghz CPU will have a 256Mb Graphics Card. Businesses definitely wouldn't have a 256Mb Graphics Card, and this is who the task is aimed at judging by the fact it was tested doing business chores.

All they have managed to prove, is that the graphics card is indeed doing all the work.

It should have been done on at least a 128Mb Card, but for the test to be of real use to businesses (and convince them they can run Vista without upgrading their 5000 computers), they should have pushed it way lower.

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Danrarbc
Well why would it be slower? Isn't it more or less unloaded when a fullscreen game is loaded up.

Yes, when something goes full screen Aero is basically gone.

He is right though, if something is rendered in a window performance can be impacted. This is why nVidia changed PureVideo a bit for the HD version, it now is accelerating video on a different portion of the GPU that Aero doesn't work hard at all.

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Neil
Isn't it cheating a bit to have a system with 1Gb RAM, a 2Ghz processor and a 256Mb Graphics Card? Apart from gaming PCs, very few computers with 1Gb RAM and a 2Ghz CPU will have a 256Mb Graphics Card. Businesses definitely wouldn't have a 256Mb Graphics Card, and this is who the task is aimed at judging by the fact it was tested doing business chores.

All they have managed to prove, is that the graphics card is indeed doing all the work.

It should have been done on at least a 128Mb Card, but for the test to be of real use to businesses (and convince them they can run Vista without upgrading their 5000 computers), they should have pushed it way lower.

That is what I was thinking, I have not seen a standard workstation with a 256MB graphics card yet.

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Abbas

In fact, most businesses I know are perfectly happy with integrated video. Thats what I think should be used to measure the performance difference.

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Microsoft Fanboy

XP Requirement: 64 MB

XP Recomended: 128 MB

Vista Requirement: 512 MB

Vista Recomended: 1 GB

Wow, another FUD from M$

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TheNay
http://www.techweb.com/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=196800080

The problem for me in the long run is what happens when Aero glass gets boring, with Windows XP you could change the theme.

You could change the color, or use Window Blinds in Vista (once the new version comes out, I don't think the current one is ready for Vista).

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scooterman

can you actually use xp with 64mb??? or even 128??? cause i know i cant

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raskren
If you pay attention to the article, you will see the catch: the test is conducted by using .

Usually, these applications put very little stress on the GPU and more CPU-dependent.

However, if you play GPU-hardware-decoding movies and games, the performance loss will be very devastating.

What garbage.

"...performance loss will be very devastating."

I lol in your direction.

Have you even tried watching a DVD or playing a game in Vista?

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lardiop

Regardless of the performance hit (or lack there of) it still looks horrible imo.

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Lasker

I think I am the only one using classic mode in Vista in a 1.86ghz core duo 2, 1gb of ram & 256mb ATI X1600 ;)

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Denis W.
XP Requirement: 64 MB

XP Recomended: 128 MB

Vista Requirement: 512 MB

Vista Recomended: 1 GB

Wow, another FUD from M$

2001 sends its regards.

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