Windows 2K or XP?
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Joined: 20 Jul 2004
Posts: 122
Location: Central Illinois, typically glued to a computer screen
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I've been using Windows 2000 for several years now and am pretty used to it. Just recently I had my first experience with Windows XP and, in my opinion, it seemed like a dumbed-down, kludged-up and fouled-around version of W2K. For instance, instead of a decent user management tool like W2K, XP has this crazy wizard-like tool that doesn't give nearly enough options - not that I could find, at least - and doesn't show enough information.

Am I the only one with this opinion? I really was very strongly and negatively impressed with XP, but then there's the other side of the coin, with some people claiming it's more secure than W2K. Anyway, I'm just looking for opinions at the moment; should I consider "upgrading" to XP, or stick with what I have?
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Windows XP versus Windows 2000
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Joined: 30 May 2004
Posts: 148
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Am I the only one with this opinion? I really was very strongly and negatively impressed with XP

I can't speak for everyone, but I have installed many Windows 2000s, and have dealt with Windows XP as a network admin.

There are some key points to keep in mind with Windows XP:

  • Windows XP is Windows NT 5.1. Windows 2000 professional is Windows NT 5.0, in other words, it's just a cosmetic upgrade.
  • Windows XP has several extremely poorly implemented features, such as:
    - An almost useless firewall, only blocks incoming traffic, which means all trojans etc installed on your system are fully free to phone home.
    - Absolutely horrible CD RW system comes native, requires procedure that is not easy or simple to remove this so you can use real CD burning software like Nero safely
    - The most pathetically vile and disgusting graphics I've ever seen.
    - Default installation removes key components from easy access.
  • Undoing all the default options, in other words, returning it to a more classic, and useable, Windows interface, takes about an hour or so, if you know all the stuff to do. We might post an entire section on the main website showing how to do that, but it's a lot of configuration changes.
  • The supposed 'features', such as fast user switching, cause many applications to not work right, and can lead to system bogdown as each desktop is maintained in memory. Not nearly as clean as simple logon/logoff.
  • Their ridiculous product activation thing, which means if you rebuild your machine frequently, or if it fails, you need to get special permission to reinstall the OS. This is royal pain, and I wouldn't wish that procedure on anyone. Or even doing a few apparently simple hardware upgrades, for example doubling your memory, changing harddrives, can trigger the 'new system' flag even it it's not a new system, but just an upgrade. And if you're putting on a new mobo, forget it, not that that ever works anyway as a rule.
  • A very annoying series of autorun 'features' that all have to be disabled unless you want Windows media player to open and start playing your cd's every time you stick it in, for example.

The list goes on, I tried Windows XP, in fact I have it installed on my computer on a test partition, but I find that I never use it. This is a classic mark of failure, the new OS should make you want to use it, not make you cringe.

XP does have a few actual pluses, their file system and bootup times were improved a bit, but it's not really very noticeable from what I can see. The single thing I actually like on XP is the default slideshow viewer for galleries in folders, when you view one image in a folder, a gallery viewer with next/previous pops up.

But it's really just a consumer version of Windows 2000, which was in my opinion the best OS Microsoft will ever make, it did and does everything you need it to do, and doesn't require you to disable all the consumer garbage put on Windows XP.

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, but then there's the other side of the coin, with some people claiming it's more secure than W2K

If you install the Windows 2000 service packs, I think it's up to 4 now, you get the same security fixes more or less, MS had trouble selling XP to corporations who have already switched to 2000, for the above reasons, so don't look for security updates being switched off anytime in the near future, although you can be sure that MS would love to get people on XP then Longhorn, but really there will be no reason to think of upgrading until Longhorn is finally released, that may be around 2007 now by latest estimates, they are having a lot of trouble with that OS, features are being dropped left and right, but they are still way behind estimated gold code ship dates.

If you followed the recent Firefox/Mozilla security holes, you might have noticed that several of them in fact only are problems on Windows XP, so any alleged 'security benefit' is in my opinion a complete hoax, probably put out there by MS's own PR staffs.
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