back to article Microsoft tells Ultimate Extras fans to 'hang on'

Microsoft has offered little satisfaction to Windows Vista Ultimate users frustrated by the dearth of goodies used to justify the operating system's premium price. The company has committed to finally deliver on an original, limited set of four Ultimate Extras promised at the start of the year, but won't yet commit to further …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    a what what and a what?

    These are extras?

    Lets see..

    A poker game. wow.. got one already

    Somewhere to hold my passwords. OK, coded an encrypted locker myself. But for those who cant code, google a free one.

    Looping video in the background. That would be damned annoying.

    Is this the best they can offer? Why o why o why? I'm not an msoft basher in the slightest but they really are doing themselves no justice at all. Pissy Vista O/S and a "goody bag" full of crap.

    I'm on XP right now, love it, know it, works fine (for most intents and purposes). Whatever was wrong with the occasional update/service pack? Are they intentionally trying to piss people off by forcing them (eventually) into using a monster of an O/S that nobody wants.....?

    Oh well, who cares, not, wont, shan't be upgrading.

  2. Dillon Pyron

    At his rate

    At the rate MS is "cranking" these out, there should be a good dozen out when they release a new OS that will "totally blow away" Vista, requiring only 4 GB of memory and 2 TB of disk and an HD-DVD (not Blu Ray) drive.

    And my quad dual core Opteron with 16 GB won't be enough to run Windows Server 2010. By then you'll need a quad 16 core 128 bit CPU with 16 GB of L1 cache (I almost spelled that cash, which might also be the case). Or I could be running Linux 5.8 on my PIII.

  3. Rick Stockton

    Just hang on, it'll all be fixed in 'Windoze InterGalactic'

    Foolish people who jumped onto Vista ALREADY are like pet hamsters... Microsoft's got them on a treadmill, right where MS wants them.

    They'll promise to fix all of your issues, but it's gonna be like this (again): "Announcing Windoze InterGalactic, our finest, prettiest, and most secure Windoze ever. If you're el33t, you've GOT to have this before anyone else does!"

    After all these years with the exact same tactic (Win-ME, W2K, XP....) you Vista buyers still IMAGINE that Microsoft will deliver a product to come within light-years of matching their hype, without making you pay for a whole new Version?

    Some people never learn. Maybe they've got no more brains than hamsters, and won't EVER get off the wheel to stop sweating for MS $billionaires. (Heck, even Mikey Dell can't stand banging the drum for Vista anymore, but real MS fans didn't even notice....)

  4. e633

    Extras... oh c'mon

    Stupid stuff for stupid weend0z3 users............wait a minute... looping video in the background?!?!?!?! I think somebody's gonna puke on his keyboard for this some day...

  5. Andrew Abbass


    Man... I think that DreamScene stuff would be the shizznit.

    I was thinking about how cool it would be it those grassy fields in standard windows backgrounds could be animated to show the wind blowing through the grass.

    It's actually got a 'window into another world' zen-like appeal.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    I think I'm missing something here. I've got Vista Ultimate (and I'm getting on with it alright so far) and I've already got Dreamscenes? It's not as bad as you think - their videos are quite subtle, like light rain in a puddle or running water in a stream, it looks quite funky but can get a bit annoying!

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  8. Philip Kroker

    Dreamscenes is old news

    has no one ever heard of VLC media player? Aside from being a great all around media player thats really light on system resources it can also loop a video as your desktop background, and the best part about it is that it runs on almost any OS.

    If you want to check it out go to

  9. Jeremy

    Dreamscene... definitely out. Appeared in my Windows Update list about 6 weeks (?) ago. Installed it, played with it for about 10 minutes, disabled it because (a) I hardly ever have everything minimised and (b) well, it's just a gimmick, isn't it. The only way to see the video clearly is to turn the desktop icons off and then you're not going to be using your desktop are you?

    I got my Vista Ultimate (and Office 2007) for free via that developer competition they ran back in January so I'm not feeling ripped off but I somewhat doubt the list of extras will include anything that makes me think, "Wow, I'm so glad I have Ultimate now!"

  10. Daniel


    Actually, vista ultimate has more than just those 4 extras... those ARE extras, but getting the Basic Vista does not include ALL that comes with Vista Ultimate, just thought I'd point that out.

    Also, extra copies of ultimate is $40-50 ish once you buy the first one.

    Using XP Pro here...

  11. Peter Kay

    The only reason to buy Vista Ultimate because the other versions are unfairly crippled. Want to both have a half decent backup system *and* work with multimedia ? You're forced to buy Ultimate.

    The extras always were going to be a scam.

    I did actually buy Vista, because the price difference between it and the other OEM versions was minimal. Also, because it's the Ultimate edition, it comes with downgrade rights enabling me to legally run a volume licensed version of XP, at least until Vista stabilises and I finally submit to the horrid activation crap.

  12. Dax Farrer

    Vista 64 bit Ultimate

    Ok, I admit to buying it, well with a new computer and I choose ultimate cos it really didnt seem much cost difference with an OEM copy. £60 v £100 .. something like that.

    Can we get a few things straight. Vista is an important upgrade for graphics and sound, I know Mac's have had the vector type graphics for a while but seriously, if M$ wanted to move this platform on it had to happen. Though the features that they have implemented to show off this new tech are poor, the carousel thing, well, its not useful.

    Right ... to the problems ...

    1. Computer will not come out of sleep mode, well comp does but it cant wake the monitor/mouse back up

    2. Cant use a combined VGA/HD (what ever its is called) monitor. You have to strip out the HD signal

    3. Services stop working randomly (who knows why). Had great fun when the authentication service stopped working, making me think my key had expired. Cue loads of fun with M$ support. I think I now have 3 or 4 different keys for Vista, they just kept handing them out for me to try.

    4. UCI is crap

    5. Everything seems less robust than XP, actually many of the same problems of 64bit XP are still around in Vista

    6. Some font problems when you change resolutions/window size. Looks shit, often have to restart the application, whereby it looks fine again.

    Hmm, thats about it. XP was a worse release.

  13. Andrew Baines Silver badge

    Just gave up on Vista

    Worked full time with Vista for 6 months, finally gave up due to its problems with large files. To start outlook with 150MB pst took 2-3 minutes. Launching a VM in VMWare locked the whole PC up for 5 minutes before it even started to resume. Every time I received an email, everything froze for 30 seconds.

    Back on XP64bit now - everything is so much faster.

    Miss the Poker game though ;)

  14. Neill Mitchell

    It's worse than that.

    ...please stop popularising this word. It's probably the most annoying out of all the naff buzzwords like 'web 2.0' and 'podcast'. Words like these are nausiating and bear no real purpose.

    How about the term "Mashup" then. Man that is one irritating and totally silly marketing phrase that seems to be here to stay.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    The thing about VLC is when you close VLC that video desktop goes away too.

    Try Vital Desktop - it's free & you can change the source code too!

  16. Shaun

    So what's happening?

    I've had dreamscene and hold-em since February - What is the point of this article? Have they since been removed?

    Dreamscene was a nice idea, but running at a decent resolution is way to cpu intensive.

    I do like the poker game though.

    Looking forward to more extras, if that's what this article is about.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    This is only true if you live in the US the rest of us are paying twice as much for Vista Ultimate, plus there are no discounts for additional copies. Personaly I no longer bug software in the UK. I travel to the states and buy it there buy.

  18. Des

    Runs on my old PC

    I've been running Vista Ultimate on an old 1.3GHz PC with 1GB RAM (and unsupported 32MB Graphics card) and it works fine, nice and stable too. OK, so I don't actually use the PC as anything other than a Media Center for serving WMV files to my XBOX 360, but every time I switch on the monitor and shake the mouse it responds immediately.

    I did try Vista on my more powerful desktop PC (3.6GHz P4 with HT, 2GB RAM, 128MB Vista compatible Graphics), but once I'd stuck all my apps (the ones that would work on Vista that is) on it it ran like a dog with no legs. Funny that, but I couldn't be bothered to figure out why, so I rolled back to good old reliable XP Pro.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Active Desktop

    Anybody remember active desktop? Where you can have a continuously updating webpage as your background... since at least Win 2K or so? One of those things that seemed neat at first but you got sick of in about 10 minutes...

  20. regadpellagru

    Teach them a lesson !

    To people that cough up loads of cash for something with buggy drivers, just as many apps as the previous one, loads of bugs, that needs 700 MB to just boot, and with only a promise for additionnal killer apps (Oh, wait, a poker game .... right, a store passwd thingie, er ... yes, and a looping vid player for your background, well, right, superb ;-), for the only benefit, like an unmature school boy (or girl, and even this one, I doubt it, being the father of a 8 years old girl), to throw to the others "I have Vista !!", in the classroom, I just want to express my deep contempt ...

    I surely have no respect for them, wish all of their cash gets swallowed, digested, and turned into a turd, then be used as a faulty replacement for the foundation of a soon to collapse empire.

    However, I believe they're usefull, in the evolution pyramid, like cattle that gets the wolf's attention and spare the farmer.

    Thus it would be a good idea to farm them.

  21. Quinten Lansu

    Oh Microsoft, Microsoft, Microsoft...

    >> I did actually buy Vista, because the price difference between it and the other OEM versions was minimal.

    Would you like to supersize that OS?

    It's only 50 dollars extra.

    I've now heard from two people that they didn't like Vista at all and would prefer XP anytime.

    Then again, all change is eerie.

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'm just glad there was a Vista Torrent :)

    I'm having no bother with vista ultimate, can run most apps with out issue except for a few obscure utilities, oh and actually all my music software. But rather than blame MS i think some of the responsiblility is with the other software vendors to patch instead of money grabbing approach, which the majority took, of releasing a new Vista version of they're software.

    But in general the OS seems secure and relatively stable for a new release, I do alot of tinkering with my computer including overclocking and Vista has survived pretty well through it all, still running fine as well.

    But then I didn't pay for it so ignore my comments I just an evil thief, but then again i'm not selling u a pig in a poke :)

    P.S. the Poker game is pretty cool for freeware, and the rest... meh never used them :)

  23. Demian Phillips

    active desktop

    Web content as your desktop was introduced with IE4 and defaulted on in windows 98 (I cant remember if it started with 1st or 2nd edition) and if the machine crashed for any reason stood a good chance of nuking the contents fo your desktop.

  24. Alex Wood


    I got a MacBook around Easter (with a discount) and have never felt so damn smug in my life.

  25. Steve J. Rapaport

    How do these extras differ from typical Tucows shareware?

    Cool -- I can pay 50 dollars extra and get $20 worth of shareware I could have downloaded from Tucows. And maybe in another few months, another $20 worth will arrive, free of charge!

    Even better, it's Microsoft-branded shareware, guaranteed to be incompatible with at least one major driver or application, and guaranteed to eat memory and require "critical updates" every week.

    Somebody please stop me hyperventilating.

  26. Rick Damiani

    MS has always done badly on add-ons

    When I registered my copy of Windows 3.1 I was supposed to get a subscription to a magazine about Windows from Microsoft. It's been something like 15 years now and I am still waiting for the first issue to be published.

  27. Euan Ramsay

    Plus! for XP

    Can't be any worse than this pile of c**p; a few skins for media player, a few desktops and a demo-only fishy screensaver?

    Boy, you MS fanboys got fleeced, and Ultimate is just Plus! version 2; fleece harder.

    Speaking of which, I've tried installing Vista Ultimate 64. Blue-screens on loading the network driver first install (but ok on the 2nd?), and blue screened enabling SLI the next.

    Unsurprisingly enough, there hasn't been a 3rd attempt, and no motivation to do so. Luckily I'm a MAC user, and technet subscriber, so the pain of forking out £300 for a worthless DVD and a lost weekend has passed me by, but I dread to think how royally p*ssed off I would have been if it was my own money, and it was my critical PC.

  28. Silas Humphreys

    It comes to something...

    when you buy an OS because it lets you legally run the previous version...

  29. ingram091

    Vista a waste, Always was...

    Indeed I beta tested Vista Ultimate, and got Vista Premium with a new laptop for free as an OEM (guess what? its been gone for several months now, it was not worth the slowing down of a brand new laptop just to use Vista). I use Windows 2003 server with windows 2000 for the 2 towers, and Windows XP MCE 2005 on my new laptop (Dell is your friend when you want to complain about Vista). After implementing the Vista emulations that are readily available online for FREE (start menu, Wallpapers, sounds, themes, icon upgrades, shell upgrades), and adding sidebar for XP, and VLC media player for the "DREAMSCAPE" Exclusive movie wallpaper functionality, (wow thats been around for like 6 years already, whats the big deal?) My windows XP MCE system runs faster then the exact same system with either the Vista ultimate beta or the Vista home premium... And it is not burdened with all the calling home and big brother / DRM "FEATURES" that Vista forces on you. Not to mention the often override UAC bugging you every 5 mins for anything that is NOT Microsoft in origin. I wanted the nice TV PVR features that Home premium and Ultimate promised but when I really looked at what I got, it was much more efficient to just used XP MCE then to bother trying to get Vista running better by doubling up RAM, and Video card... Oh By the way. the "exclusive" Areoglass features, are also available from the original concept developer (NOT MICROSOFT) for Windows XP as well. It works like a dream on XP. No problem at all. This was something my Vista Home premium was not able to accomplish on my equipment at all. But it works 100% on windows XP from the original developer? go figure? Kudos to Otaku...

    As an IT consultant my consistent answer for Vista is don't bother. If it ain't broke, don't try to fix it...

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