Page 2 of 2
"Nvidia appeared to be having shocking problems with Vista crashes as soon as the OS was released. Nvidia's own support forums were full of frantic users whose systems had turned from being rock solid on XP to flaky as soon as Vista was installed. There were months of nothing but silence from Nvidia," Kingsley-Hughes told ChannelWeb in an e-mail exchange.
Kingsley-Hughes did say that a year later, Nvidia has "pulled their act together" and now has stable drivers for Vista. Nor did he let AMD-ATI completely off the hook.
"What's interesting is that at around June or July, something happened to ATI's drivers and they started acting up more than usual," he said, adding that currently the No. 2 discrete graphics vendor also had "quite stable" drivers for Vista.
Jalil Mahini, president of Niles, Ill.-based system builder and managed service provider Micronet Systems, said there were problems with Nvidia drivers in the early days of Vista, but the company has fixed them to his satisfaction.
"Going back about a year ago or 14 months, yes, there were some problems, absolutely. But in the last six months or so, we haven't had any problems," said Mahini, who added that in the three months after Vista's release, Nvidia "came out really fast with drivers to fix problems."
"We expected to have some problems because Vista was so new. There was no way for these manufacturers to come out with drivers that worked with Vista flawlessly," he said.
For its part, Nvidia takes issue with the theory that it had more than its reasonable share of driver issues with Vista, as compared to AMD.
"I think we had a bit more of a challenge because we support more products [than AMD]. We support about 250 products, they support about 125," said Andrew Fear, SLI product manager at Nvidia.
That argument has a supporter in Joe Toste, VP of marketing at Equus Computer Systems in Minneapolis, Minn. Toste's take on Microsoft's crash numbers was that enthusiast systems with top-of-the-line GPUs were likely causing a disproportionate amount of driver crashes.
"If you look at Nvidia's dominance of the high-end, well that's where these bugs occur. The instability of those drivers is in the high-end dual SLI. And Nvidia has 90 percent of that market," Toste said.
Nvidia's Perez stressed that the past is done and besides, shouldn't we all be focusing on the real villain to emerge from the Microsoft Vista Capable lawsuit -- Intel chipsets?
"For us, we think the old driver stuff is meaningless. If you look at reviews now of our hardware on Vista, we're past that. Was it a difficult transition? Yeah. But look at Intel, 945G still barely works. At least I can plug in my iPod and it works on Vista, and they're bitter enemies," he said.
<< Previous | 1 | 2