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Windows 7: My Issues with Windows 7

31 Jan 2010   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
My Issues with Windows 7

So during the week I made a post titled Windows 7 Rant about the things I dislike in windows 7. Well for whatever reason it got deleted so here is my second attempt. This time however I am going to outline my issues and give solutions where I have found them.

Last weekend I downloaded a retail iso of Windows 7 Ultimate and installed it to my external hard drive to try out. If I could get it running satisfactory then I would go out and buy the OEM disc and install it on my main raid array. However I ran into some show stoppers that until today prevented me from even considering it.

Quickly those issues were poor performance (UI elements slow, laggy, screen corruption), ugly UI (huge taskbar, windows bahaving not consistently), notification area creates a new window to show hidden icons, and not enough options to customize the UI to my preference.

On the first issue, I have since fixed it. I had installed the latest graphics drivers but that didn't fix the poor performance. For example dragging windows was choppy (only applied to windows with aero effects) and playing games gave me about half the FPS I saw in Vista. However Windows 7 came with an older version of the Nvidia drivers so I downloaded driver cleaner and through multiple reboots I finally managed to get everything uninstalled. After running DC the first time it got rid of the ones I installed but it still installed the one that came with windows. Took me several attempts to clear that one off. Once I finally did though I reinstalled the latest driver from Nvidia and now... wow. Everything is awesome now. Everything is responsive and games like WoW run so much smoother. Now I can see why people rave about Windows 7 performance. However I still hate the UI.

Next thing was the huge taskbar that lacked quicklauch. I could go on but if you right click on the taskbar and go to properties and check use small icons box and select never combine from the drop down box and then right click and unpin each of the items that are on the taskbar from default; Much better. Quick launch is easy to re-enable. Just create a folder somewhere called quick launch and then right click the taskbar, toolbars, new toolbar, and point it to the quick launch folder you created. I like the idea of useing the taskbar icons for things isntead of the systray and the jumplists that can come off them (like windows explorer and internet explorer. being able to preview all my tabs from the taskbar is handy). But the pined icons are just too big and I hate how they move when the program is then open. Quick Launch is much more intuitive and streamlined. Also I wish I could remove the show desktop icon on the right. Another thing is the context menu from taskbar items is missing the move command (so on multi monitor setups windows can get lost if a display is off, dissconected or in another room with no way of retreiving them) and gets cluttered and takes longer to load/appear. You can access the new menu by left clicking and draggin up on them so I wish the right click context menu was left alone.

More on the ugly UI... I can not fathom how people can say Windows 7 is so complete and polished and is everything vista should have been. So many times I open up a properties dialog box and its useing old UI elements and looks plain ugly (or has tabs showing for one tab...). Heck the fonts installation dialog box still uses elements from pre XP... seriously wtf? Also notification windows now sometimes just have a white background and invisible buttons... not only is it hard to read its hard to know what is a button and what isn't, it's very annoying. And again with the consistnecy problem some notifcation windows show a background with invisible buttons and some then have a grey bar at the bottom with some buttons... not to mention these windows can take up 30%+ of my screen on a huge 24" monitor. I could go on but I found something that fixes some of these problems and explains my issues... ClassicShell. In a nutshell my qualms with Windows 7 (starting with vista really) is that UI elements take up way too much of my screen, are inconsistent, not intuitive, and too flashy. A pretty OS is fine... but if it loses functionality or takes longer to do simple tasks then there is a problem.

Issues with the notification area... instead of rehashing this again go here. Though I do love the increased control over hiding icons and ability to hide system icons rather then just disabling them.

Alright that said here are a few things I love about Windows 7

1. Improved overall performance/responsiveness in Applications and Games
2. Ability to uninstall/disable unused programs such as Windows Media Center
3. Jumplist/Preview ability from taskbar items
4. Powershell
5. Something else that made me go WOW today but I cant remember... will edit when I do remember.
6. When shutting down it is a smooth/quick process. Vista would black out the screen and chug.
7. Ability to burn ISO's natively

Alright so here is a list of my tweaks that have made Windows 7 a definite upgrade over Vista for me.

1. Disable UAC, Action Center, Windows Defender.
2. Turn on small icons and disable grouping of taskbar items. Link
3. In the Windows Features windows disable Indexing Service, DVD Maker, Media Center, Windows Gadget Platform, XPS services/viewer.
4. Disable Superfetch and Readyboost services (may not be suitable to all users)
5. Go through task scheduler and disable anything you may not running on its own, like the troubleshooting/error reporting things (practically everything for me).
6. Disable system restore and automatic restarting on system crash
7. Disable page file (good for systems with more then enough RAM i.e. 6GB+)
8. Disable hibernation type powercfg –H off at a cmd prompt.
9. Take ownership of windows folder (seriously as the administrator of my computer I dont have access to my files?) takeown /F C:\Windows /R
10. Disable libraries. Link
11. Disable homegroup. Link
12. Show hidden files and protected files and disable hiding of known extensions.

I found The Ultimate Windows Tweaker while searching for a way to make my start menu more how I like and found it could do many of the tweaks above that I normally do manually. It has found permanent residence on my USB drive.

Using my tweaks, Ultimate Windows Tweaker, and Classic Shell... here is my result.

I really dislike how driving signing/error reporting and other things that used to be in various control panel property windows are now more difficult (some impossible) to disable or change. Overall I am very unhappy with windows 7 in this respect. Things that you used to be able to change can no longer be changed and new things are forced upon users with no options (right click context menus on taskbar tiems, notification area jumplist instead of expanding button, etc.). One of the times bragged about Windows 7 is its compatibility with older software. How about compatibility with its userbase?

Two things still big on my figure out list... right click context menu's on taskbar items and notification area. If anyone knows how to restore the old right click context menu's onto taskbar items (there still there when you right click on a window... but seriously what use is the move command if you already can click on the window!!!!) and/or how to make the notification area expand to the left instead of creating a new window... please do tell.

And for the record Windows XP still boots/shuts down and responds overall faster then Windows 7 and is less of a memory hog. However the video subsystem in 7 (started with vista) is finally properly implemented and improves video performance substantionally.

Now I am off to backup my main raid array and format for Windows 7. This post was just to put out there things I dislike about Windows 7 and some of my tricks to make it work for me. If anyone knows a way to fix something I have complained about (or a better method to what I have done already) please do tell.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

31 Jan 2010   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 SP1
 
 

Well, if you run it from an external drive... the problem is there. Why? USB is much much slower than S-ATA or IDE (well, in version 1.1 and 2.0).

Use an internal one and see what I mean

(original post edited because I saw that the other poster after me didn't care)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate x64/x86 Windows 7 Pro x64/x86 Windows 7 Home Premium x64/x86
 
 

Running Windows 7 from a USB drive is probably the essence of your trouble. Every issue you are complaining about is non-exsistent in every system I have seen that runs Windows 7.

Your issues seem more like they are located directly between the keyboard and your chair, rather then within the OS itself.

Windows 7 continues to out perform and to be easier to use than any OS anywhere.

Prehaps a class would help you understand your computer better and your issues will magically evaporate.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


31 Jan 2010   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate (32 bit)
 
 

HI BunBun,
I found your message quite informative in the steps you took to adjust Windows 7.
You have a nice computer setup so I'm sure you have some skills by your Windows 7 tweaks. I especially took note of your TAKEOWN /F C:\Windows /R command (Very nice)

So you are presently running Vista 64 bit. Do you plan on buying Windows 7 and doing a full install?

I think you can become a valuable asset here but I would suggest you take a deep breath and chill out because you sound like you have a chip on your shoulded about Windows 7. If you plan on installing Windows 7 properly I'm sure you will see that it is probably the best OS Windows has ffered from day one and I have used every single one of them.

Anyway, I enjoyed your comments and hope you come back in a more relaxed state and join in on the cobversations.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #5

Win 7 Ultimate 32bit
 
 

Quote:
installed it to my external hard drive
Is the first problem with all of your choppy/slowness issues.

Quote:
Take ownership of windows folder (seriously as the administrator of my computer I dont have access to my files?
Because you are not supposed to be running as a full admin.
It's your choice to do so, but it is not good etiquette.

Please keep in mind that Win 7 is NOT XP and should not be viewed the same or used the same.

Quote:
Disable page file (good for systems with more then enough RAM i.e. 6GB+)
Regardless of what you know from before with this. It is not a good idea to run without a pagefile. Windows runs better with one. Yes, it's a controversial issue. But, I have done all of them and have found that overall it is better to run with one than without.
Regardless of how much ram you have.
Set it Static 4096 for both Min/Max if you have more than 4G of Ram.

If you want to defrag it regularly, find the reg key (around everywhere) to delete page file on shutdown.

Quote:
Disable UAC, Action Center, Windows Defender.
There is not a single solitary reason for doing this. Not one.

Quote:
And for the record Windows XP still boots/shuts down and responds overall faster then Windows 7 and is less of a memory hog.
Win 7 is not XP. 7 Handles Memory better and uses it differently. Don't compare them.

Win 7 over all is the best OS released from MS. Far Exceeds XP, and is better than Vista.
You will be happier with it running it properly than how you are from an external drive over USB or eSata. Yes, eSata is considered equivalent to running internal, but you have to take the external drive caddy controller into account.

What in the world would give you the impression it would run flawless that way?

Quote:
move command
If you are using Aero,,, hold cursor over icon on taskbar
wait for image to appear
Right click the app bar in the image and select Move
Yea, a bit cumbersome, but it's there.

Quote:
notification area expand to the left instead of creating a new window
you need to elaborate on this one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Lebon14 View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by BunBun
Last weekend I downloaded a retail iso of Windows 7 Ultimate and installed it to my external hard drive to try out.
This is the reason why your last thread got deleted : You downloaded and installed an non-legit copy of Windows 7. We do not offer help to people that downloads the OS illegally and we don't encourage the discussion of illegal software.

Buy a retail version of Windows 7 and then, come back with your issues. If your ISO was from the 30$ special, then I'm sorry about the above statement (you didn't specify).
It is a retail copy and I have it installed not activated for the 30 days in which I am allowed. I have done nothing illiegal nor is my copy of windows a source of my issues (as it is a legit ISO verified).

If you read my post you see I am backing up and formatting my raid as we speak as since I have fixed most of my problems (no thanks to people like you) I have received a legit OEM copy and plan to install it. I am sorry that I refuse to fork out cash for a product that I have never tried and is the main interface to which I do my daily work/play!

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by joel406 View Post
Running Windows 7 from a USB drive is probably the essence of your trouble. Every issue you are complaining about is non-exsistent in every system I have seen that runs Windows 7.

Your issues seem more like they are located directly between the keyboard and your chair, rather then within the OS itself.

Windows 7 continues to out perform and to be easier to use than any OS anywhere.

Prehaps a class would help you understand your computer better and your issues will magically evaporate.
If you re-read I said external drive. Not USB. It is a 1TB Hitatchi connected via eSata getting over 230MB/s burst and 130MB/S average read speeds.

UI design flaw and lack of options are most definily not a fault of mine as I did not directly work on the Windows 7 project with Microsoft.

Please carefully re-read my post before you comment further.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by IggyAZ View Post
HI BunBun,
I found your message quite informative in the steps you took to adjust Windows 7.
You have a nice computer setup so I'm sure you have some skills by your Windows 7 tweaks. I especially took note of your TAKEOWN /F C:\Windows /R command (Very nice)

So you are presently running Vista 64 bit. Do you plan on buying Windows 7 and doing a full install?

I think you can become a valuable asset here but I would suggest you take a deep breath and chill out because you sound like you have a chip on your shoulded about Windows 7. If you plan on installing Windows 7 properly I'm sure you will see that it is probably the best OS Windows has ffered from day one and I have used every single one of them.

Anyway, I enjoyed your comments and hope you come back in a more relaxed state and join in on the cobversations.
Thank you.

I am currently running Vista 64bit but am in the process of backing up to format for Windows 7 64bit. After fixing the majority of my issues I purchased an OEM copy.

There is nothing improper about my current installation of Win 7 other then it is on a single hard drive vs my faster raid array. My issues with Win 7 are it has been hyped up so much and it did not live up to my expectations other then the video performance. Everyone I have talked to raves on about how finished and polished Win 7 is and that couldn't be further from the truth.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Tepid View Post
Quote:
installed it to my external hard drive
Is the first problem with all of your choppy/slowness issues.

Quote:
Take ownership of windows folder (seriously as the administrator of my computer I dont have access to my files?
Because you are not supposed to be running as a full admin.
It's your choice to do so, but it is not good etiquette.

Please keep in mind that Win 7 is NOT XP and should not be viewed the same or used the same.

Regardless of what you know from before with this. It is not a good idea to run without a pagefile. Windows runs better with one. Yes, it's a controversial issue. But, I have done all of them and have found that overall it is better to run with one than without.
Regardless of how much ram you have.
Set it Static 4096 for both Min/Max if you have more than 4G of Ram.

If you want to defrag it regularly, find the reg key (around everywhere) to delete page file on shutdown.

Quote:
Disable UAC, Action Center, Windows Defender.
There is not a single solitary reason for doing this. Not one.

Quote:
And for the record Windows XP still boots/shuts down and responds overall faster then Windows 7 and is less of a memory hog.
Win 7 is not XP. 7 Handles Memory better and uses it differently. Don't compare them.

Win 7 over all is the best OS released from MS. Far Exceeds XP, and is better than Vista.
You will be happier with it running it properly than how you are from an external drive over USB or eSata. Yes, eSata is considered equivalent to running internal, but you have to take the external drive caddy controller into account.

What in the world would give you the impression it would run flawless that way?

1. If my external harddrive is causeing my slowness then everyone I know must be experiencing it too cause their HD's are a lot slower then mine is...

2. If I as the power user am not to have full admin rights then who is?

3. How is pageing anything from ram (10,000MB/s +) to a hard drive (400mb/s burst <200mb/s average) going to help anything run better?

FYI I have done extensive testing on this matter with both the pagefile and superfetch so I highly reccomend you move off that topic as it was not the topic of this thread.

4. Why should I not disable useless features that just rob my performance and annoy the hell out of me (as the power user)?

5. As they are both OS's provided by Microsoft and I am forced to use Windows 7 (for many reasons that I am not getting into here) why should I not compare them based on their peformance and how they affect my daily life? Who cares if it handles memory better if it means less performance (that is a blanket statement by the way dont take it litterally).

I understand the benefits of 7 which is why I am going through this process so I can use it effectively in my daily life. But the fact still stands that a couple important issues that I and others care about have still not been fully addressed. I have XP machines that boot in less then 20 seconds from the time you press the power button. I can't do that with 7.

6. There is absolutely zero difference between my external drive and a internally mounted one. If I cared enough I would link screenshots of benchmarks of the drive however I am sure you would all just ignore it anyway.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium 32-Bit - Build 7600 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by BunBun View Post
Everyone I have talked to raves on about how finished and polished Win 7 is and that couldn't be further from the truth.
Everybody is wrong..................
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #9

Windows 7 Ultimate x86-64
 
 

The pagefile is necessary as some app's expect it to be there. You also should never install to an external drive no matter what connection is have. Disable the security features at your own peril - and 7 is infinitely superior to XP in every way.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
31 Jan 2010   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bigmck View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by BunBun View Post
Everyone I have talked to raves on about how finished and polished Win 7 is and that couldn't be further from the truth.
Everybody is wrong..................
Not wrong perse, just exagerated or something.

Also after exploring this more I am starting to find more and more people who agree with me.

It just bugs me that Vista got so much flak and 7 gets all the praise. It's a complete reversal and both are unwarranted.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 My Issues with Windows 7





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