Windows Longhorn (First Look)

KB ID 0000102 Dtd1 0/11/07


A couple
of months ago a brown jiffy bag landed on my doormat, this is
not an unusual occurrence in my house, with Technet updates, and
corporate freebies I’m guessing my postman is not my biggest fan

So with a brief scan of the label and seeing the word “Microsoft”
I tossed it on the table and went to work.

that evening I got out my Technet Folder and started the monthly
chore of updating CD’s and throwing the old ones away, I was surprised
to find a letter and two CD’s.

Mr Long, it was a pleasure to meet you at the MVP summit in [somewhere
in America I forget], as promised please find a copy of Windows
Longhorn as promised etc”Now this was surprising because I’ve never been to America in
my life, and the possibility of there being two Pete Longs who
are both MVP’s is just too great – so either (a) its a mistake
or (b) someone’s been to liberal with their “Mail Merge”.

two months later my boss asked me to build a backup PC at work
to do some scripted offsite backups – so I thought I’d make this
mundane task more interesting by using Longhorn to do it.

This is the Beta 4074 Version of Longhorn (as such not everything
works as well as it will)
The setup screenshots were taken at home using Virtual PC.


OK in goes the CD, it does’nt get recognised? bah! I put it in my laptop,
it gets recognised – It’s a DVD, in fact two enormous DVD’s.
I share the Laptop DVD drive and install over the network,
now I’m going to need some other method of getting screenshots.
I continue on the work one, but take the disks home and install
Virtual PC 2004 and load it up there.

So now I have a crash course in Virtual PC 2004, load up, it seems a bit
sluggish, but I’m also running Outlook, Quickpost, and a host
of other stuff so I can’t complain.

All looks very “Server 2003-ish”, at work the resolution was much
better so I assume this is due to VPC.

This looks a bit more cool, point to note: 15 to 25 minutes left it says,
I go get a coffee – on return it says 15 minutes – at this
point the whole exercise matches the speed of a two legged
dog – dragging a boat anchor – uphill – in the snow 🙁 I go
and do my weekly shopping, wash the car, clean the barbeque
and return – the display defiantly says 14 minutes left –
I go and watch “Underworld” on DVD on return it
says 6 minutes.


At last something happens – it’s unlock code time (I had to download
this from the Microsoft secure web site earlier) the time
counter goes back to 15-25 minutes and I loose the will to
live – and click OK.

After about 2 minutes 🙂 the EULA pops up, like every other person in the
civilised world I did’nt read it and ticked “yes I agree”.
In the event of my death, my soul is now the property of Microsoft
🙁 Also note we are back at the magic 15-25 minutes again.

At last things to click – I try to change the input locale to UK – its locked
to US, as is the keyboard, not a problem for me at home cause
I’ve got a US Keyboard but at work that’s gonna annoy the
hell out of me.

Again this is in VPC so I can’t change anything – I’ve no choice but to
accept the defaults and click continue.

Again time stands still, I get bored and go in the front room, I get my daughter
to tell me if the screen changes (cause I’m a considerate

“Dad the screens changed!” Ah looks like we are booting in to
Longhorn at last methinks 🙂 I put the kettle on and return
to my desk.


So- far so good, Time for another jolt of Caffeine.

Coffee finished I start to get bored again its getting late and this is taking
forever – its like watching a Windows 98 PC defrag – (why
are the blue and red dancing squares so hypnotic) I kill time
by counting how many times the hourglass does a summersault
and again loose the will to live at about 15315 times 🙁

“Dad its changed again!” Note “This can take up to 10 minutes”
In the time it took to do this I could have walked into town
bought a complete PC in component parts, walked home and assembled
it – after drinking 14 bottles of Absinthe 🙁

OK – In reality at this point VPC and I fell out, it booted into
Longhorn set itself to 4 bit colour, and ran like like an
asthmatic seal. This like all the problems above I put down
to VPC and NOT Longhorn, the remainder of
the shots are from the clean install PC I did at work. Which
annoyingly took 15-25 minutes to install 🙂

AAAAAARRRRRGGGHH! My eyes are bleeding! – Who in their right mind at Microsoft
decided to use that as the default desktop! I decide the
decision must have been made by someone who wears “Red
Dwarf” T Shirts and had no girlfriends at school. Just
as I get used to the XP “Teletubbies Hill” I’m
assaulted with that 🙁

I read on other sites that the new sidebar has a “wealth of features
and it’s a great new addition to windows” I decide
I fear and loathe change and disable it instantly, I might
have been more open but the clock looks like a cheap plastic
one you would get in the bargain bin at B&Q, that runs
on 1 AA battery. The clock knows this and returns to annoy
me later.

Now this I do like! – search straight from the task bar! I do a search for
*.msc to see if they have included any cool new mmc consoles
I can play with, it searches for “Files containing text:
*.msc” There is nowhere in any search command to change
this 🙁 Conclusion – yes leave it there its cool, but fix

I like! Very clean – At first the folder icons take a bit
of getting used to, but the bits you can see inside them
are actually what’s in the folder (small things please small

At first I thought
“Oh no where’s the [up directory] button” but
the path at the top becomes a row of buttons when you hover
over them which is much better.

OK – I’m building this thing to do some temporary backups so I need to create
a folder to put them in, right click > New > folder?
And its not there 🙁 damn! this is the way I create new folders,
in fact its the way I always create new folders! The more
observant of you will have spotted the “Make new folder”
button before I did, I click it, nothing happens, I click
it again – still nothing. in fact I have to drop to command
line and issue an MD command to make a new folder (Mental
note to self
DONT use Beta OS’s for
work things).

At this point I decide to fire up IE (v6) and take a look at
PeteNet, there’s no Java 🙁 I zoom over to Sun to download
Java – Sun Tells me….“Warning you are using Windows XP – This version
of Java works best on Windows XP”

I smile – the PC crashes, after a reboot I try Microsoft
JVM (Still available on my download page) and it works fine.

PeteNetLive Longhorn Style 🙂

Author: Migrated

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