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The features and upgrades in Windows Vista

Microsoft has upgraded the last, latest greatest upgrade (Windows XP) with a new, latest greatest upgrade: Windows Vista.Besides costing more (the full package goes for about $400), what other differences are there between XP and Vista?

The look has changed-the new Vista program opens windows that look like, well, windows.There are fancy new special effects too.For example, the Windows Flip and the Windows 3D flip allow you to flip through the open windows when using the mouse scroll wheel.The new layout will appeal aesthetically to people who are impressed with similar features available in the high tech video games.Other improvements in the look include peripheral details like the JPEG file used for desktop wallpaper maintaining their proper ratios.

The search feature has changed-The new Windows Vista integrates a system wide search called `instant search".This new search program runs faster and offers more options as far as customizing your search.There are also search bars offered in more places including the Explorer user interface and the Start menu.The way the new search menu works, users are able to pull up programs by typing a few of the letters into the Start bar field.If you are typing a document and need to make a quick calculation, typing in calc will open the calculator right onto your open page.

New and upgraded applications-there are a whole slew of new and upgraded applications included in the new Windows Vista program.To see the entire list of upgrades, go to and follow the links to Vista.These are just a few examples of upgrades.

- Windows Mail-the out Outlook Express has been replaced with Windows Mail.The big news associated with this upgrade is that Windows mail has a Phishing filter and a Bayesian junk mail filter, which is updated monthly.Finally an end to spam!The other upgrade in the email application is that the messages are now stored in individual files rather than in the database.This should make searching and storage easier.

- Windows Meeting Space-NetMeeting has been replaced by WindowsMeeting Space.This application makes collaborative work much easier.Using Windows Meeting Space users can share application with other users.This program also allows for things like collaborative editing and passing notes.

- Windows Photo Gallery-the Windows Photo Gallery is a terrific edition.This application allows the user to handle digital pictures and even digital videos.The editing features have been updated, the color has been improved, and the PrintWizzard is flexible.The photo and video library organization is user friendly and will allow you about the same flexibility as iTunes allows for managing your music.

- The games-even the games have been updated and improved in the new Windows Vista.All the old games were re-written and the graphics were updated. There is even a brand new came called Purble Place.The old pinball game is gone but some Windows Vista editions offer Chess Titans and Mahjong Titans in its place. Not a bad trade!

In general, you will find the new Windows Vista to be more high tech than the older Windows programs.The average user might not need all of the high tech features.If you typically use your computer to check your email and use the Microsoft Office applications (or other popular applications) you might not need Vista at all.If you or your company is on the breaking edge of new technology, you will find that Vista supports all of your high tech needs.Switching from one program to another will not require a lot of adjustment, the screens and menus look different but the basic layout is the same.

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