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Windows Vista Beta 2 features bugs and blue screens

The most recent beta of Microsoft Corp.'s Windows Vista operating system is the most unstable late development OS release from the company in over a decade, according to industry analysts.

"I have been testing Microsoft operating systems since Windows 95, and this is the buggiest OS I've seen this late in development," said Joe Wilcox, an analyst with Jupiter Research. "Look at the older operating systems, and by Beta 2 there is a stable foundation on which the [independent software vendors] can build."

In an article published at TopTechNews, Wilcox goes on to assimilate the recent Vista release to "a ship on stormy seas." A survey of 207 companies released by analyst's firm last week showed that nearly 50 percent of those companies plan to wait at least 13 months after Vista's release before deploying the software, while some don't plan to adopt it at all.

But Wilcox and his firm are not alone in their assessment of Vista. It's being reported that the broad range of Vista Beta 2 testers have found the release to be plagued by bugs and blue screens. Although Microsoft has not planned a Beta 3 release, some testers are suggesting that the company reconsider.

According to TTN, Vista's current memory consumption stands at a staggering 700MB —recently reduced from a full gigabyte. Still, that's about three times the memory requirement of Microsoft's previously released Windows XP system.

"Put the testing aside, I can't find a valid antivirus software that works with it," said Michael Cherry, an analyst with research firm Directions on Microsoft. "That is a key application and runs at a core level. If the antivirus vendors, who work closely with Microsoft, can't get Vista working, then the core is not stable."

Cherry told TTN that it might be time for the industry to reset expectations because an operating system should no longer be considered groundbreaking technology.

"I am impressed with Apple OS and I like the way over the last couple of releases they have made a series of incremental improvements. It has not been earth-shattering," the analyst added.

For its part, Microsoft (as a company) has maintained that the first release candidate (RC1) of Vista would ship by the end of next month. However, individual executives have acknowledged that Vista's code will not ship until it is ready.

Microsoft has said Vista will be available for consumers in January.