Vista Premium Requires Hybrid Hard Drive

We like the technology but, come on, an enforceable requirement?!

Advancing technology is great, superb, absolutely top banana but sometimes I wonder when labels get stuck on for technology’s sake. Riyad discussed this in his Are We There Yet? editorial recently and now the curse has struck again.


Microsoft is the culprit this time as it bends vendors and consumers over a barrel for its flagship edition of next gen, endlessly delayed OS Windows Vista. ‘Vista Premium’ is the technical term for this smarty pants version and in order to receive the coveted logo the latest prerequisite is a hybrid hard drive (HHD).

These devices – which were first mooted by Intel back in October, then pushed again by Samsung (above) in May – work by slapping a lump of flash memory into a regular moving parts hard drive and then utilising this as cache to speed operation and save battery life. It’s all well and good, great, superb and absolutely top banana but the little blighters aren’t even out yet and who knows what hefty tag they’ll be given on debut? Besides, who knows what the first HHD capacities will be? After all, it is quite likely they will be smaller than a top of the line traditional moving parts model.

In theory this means you could have too identically specified cutting edge notebooks, one with a 200GB hard drive and the other with a 100GB HHD and only the lower capacity model would receive MS’s top accolade. ‘Crazy’ is perhaps a strong term, but ‘daft’ is pretty much spot on and as for ‘technology for technology’s sake’… definitely.

Here’s a wild idea: why don’t Gates and his minions stop hoisting the requirements up for the hardware we’ll have to buy for its blessing and instead dedicate more time to optimising Vista’s performance so we don’t have to upgrade like crazy and can actually ”save some money”.

Wow, now there’s a radical concept…


We now understand Microsoft may be reconsidering this decision. Fingers crossed that sanity prevails.

Windows Vista

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