Windows Vista RC2 – First Impressions

Windows VistaWindows Vista RC2 (build 5744) was available internally late last week, and I’m writing to you from it right now.  It’s available for download to technical beta testers, Customer Preview Program participants, TAP Testers, and MSDN/TechNet subscribers.  Here are the details and announcement in the Windows Vista blog.

I upgraded my Vista RC1 machine to RC2 on Friday, and I must say I have been very impressed.  Performance is improved, and some of the stability issues I alluded to in my “first impressions of RC1” article have been resolved. 

Search is snappy, the graphics rendering is smoother, wireless networking is reliable, my Windows Mobile Device Center (think ActiveSync++ for Vista – now available to download in beta 3 form) is gorgeous and syncing to my PocketPC (which I love, and should really write more about here). 

My laptop, a Toshiba M400, can now reliably sleep and wake up in a split second.

In fact, at this point, I have generally stopped thinking of this as being a pre-release operating system; I just get on with what I’m doing, and Vista makes things easier.  (I am, however, still learning tips and tricks on a day-to-day basis!)

The state of RC2 bodes really well for Vista’s imminent launch.  If you’re a member of any of the programs mentioned above, head to the Windows Vista Team Blog to learn how to check it out for yourself!

[Update 12 Oct: Due to overwhelming demand, the RC2 Customer Preview Program is now closed.  Wow — 200k+ downloads — that was quick!] 

Comments (7)

  1. lol… only installed RC1 on Wednesday last week. Do you recommend doing an Update or Clean Install from RC1 to RC2?

  2. Mystereman says:

    I wish I could say the same thing.  For months now I’ve had problems with USB support in Vista, even to the point of BSOD’s.  Keyboards and Mice work ok, but storage devices do not.  Even RC2 has the same old problems.  

    Setup won’t even start if I have any USB Storage devices attached.  Once I get Vista installed, when I try to plug in any USB Storage devices, the "Installing hardware" bit takes forever (10+ minutes) and finally it says it’s completed successfully, but in device manager I get a device failed to start error.

    This is a Gigabit GA-K8NXP-SLI motherboard, nForce 4, Athlon 64 3500+.  I’ve filed reports for months on this, and nothing seems to change.

  3. zboog says:


    I’m having the same problems with every USB device I plug in that has storage (and also my 6-port USB hub) in RC2 and the only thing I have in common with your system is that I am also using a nForce4 SLI mobo – DFI LANPARTY UT nF4 SLI-DR, in my case.

    I keep waiting and searching for responses to this problem – but I’m beginning to feel like nobody else is having this problem and it’s something we have set in our BIOS or in the security settings somewhere.  Or maybe we just need nForce drivers from Nvidia specifically for RC2 as they posted for RC1 <a href="">here (link)</a>.

    I hope someone reads this and knows what to do.

  4. Matthew says:

    Same problem here, I have yet to find a USB storage device that will work with RC2.  Can’t boot the OS with a USB device attached to the computer… Not happy!

  5. Matthew says:

    Downloaded the new Nvidia drivers for RC2, still having the same problem… USB storage will not work!

  6. Bart says:

    I am having the exact same problem.

    Every mass storage device I connect + my tv tuner either bsod’s my vista or just doesn’t do anything

    My guess is also that this is driver related but Nvidia doesn’t seem eager to release new drivers soon.

    Furthermore, since the RC driver never worked, I am wondering if they will even bother fixing this

    Anyone have more info on this issue ?

  7. Aidan says:

    Im also having the same problem. it was working fine with usb devices, but i think when i updated its messed it up. very annoying. also can i update from this version like to final build?