Troubleshoot Common Windows Vista Problems


Are you a user who purchased Windows Vista as soon as it hit the market and still brooding over your purchase? If yes, You SHOULD read this post.

I bought my PC with Windows Vista Business and initially I regretted making my move, I felt like going back to Windows XP but, I wanted to have an adventurous life with my computer and didn’t give in to the temptation of XP’ing it. I am writing this post after the completion of 2 years with Vista, I have had good times and really bad times with it and I believe that it deserves a fair share of respect.

In this post I am going to share with you some of the common problems we all face with vista and their remedies with which we can flaunt that we’ve got an OS that’s as stable as 7, though vista is nowhere near perfect.

Get the SP’s before you blame

Before you conclude that you can no longer live with vista, I urge that you make sure you have Vista SP2 installed and have automatic updates turned on. In all these years, MS has let out a lot of useful updates that has made vista more stable in comparison to the horrible version without service packs.

Download Vista SP2 . If you are looking for an entire DVD ISO image of vista, Download Vista DVD ISO Image.

Service Pack 1 is a prerequisite for installing Service Pack 2, Please make sure that your system is running Service Pack 1 before you install Service Pack 2. Although, I believe that nobody can survive using Vista without a service pack all these years.

You will notice that your system is a lot better after SP2. I didn’t get useless UAC prompts like the ones you get when you connect a keyboard, though UAC continues to irritate me at times.

The New Looks (i.e. back in 2007)

One of the biggest problems (especially with novice users) is the new start menu and the features added to Windows Explorer, you can simply turn them back to Windows classic and get nostalgic with the days you spent with 2000, you can also enforce windows to use the classic start menu.

Compatibility Issues

Compatibility issues were abound when Vista was out, now, in 2010 all the new programs out there support Vista, but, if you are looking to run an old program you can always use the compatibility mode (RC the program icon -> properties -> ‘compatibility’ tab.

All you need to do is select the OS for which the program has been designed to run on. If the program is too old (from the days of Windows 9x) you may have to disable visual themes as well.

Copying Files

Though we don’t face problems with file copying like we did before, the whole process is still slow when compared to Windows 7/XP. My only suggestion to this issue would be to use software like Tera Copy that can speed up file-transfer duration. There are other tweaks you may try if you are good with the registry.

If due to circumstances you are not able to install Tera Copy, you can still speed up your computer by following the simple tweak below:

Control Panel -> Programs & Features -> Turn Windows features on or off -> uncheck ‘Remote differential compression’.

Remote differential compression according to Microsoft in one of its blog posts is a feature that is supposed to speed up copying, but, in Vista it does the job of slowing up the copy process, so I’d recommend you turn it off, always. (Some users won’t be able to do this since Windows freezes when they try to, my message to them, you win some and you lose some!).

UAC, the Ultimate Irritant

UAC has been irritating us Vista users for a long time. Vista doesn’t have the option of choosing which types of UAC alerts appear and which shouldn’t, if you are pretty confident with the security suite and the firewall you use you can completely switch off UAC prompts by following the steps below.

Control Panel -> User accounts -> Turn UAC on or off

You can switch to Smart UAC if you are concerned about security.

Use Fix It! And have a 7 experience

Microsoft has launched a program called Fix It! It’s still in beta and its function is to fix computer errors as soon as they appear. Windows 7 users won’t be requiring this software since they already have the self-support based on which Fix It! was made. This program is now available for XP and vista users, Download Fix It!

There are a lot more issues with Windows Vista which can be addressed. I have tried my best to write about some issues which I feel are a real menace. If possible, I’ll write a sequel to this post in the future (if vista still exists) with more remedies.

For a limited time I'm sharing some select Tips and Tricks and How-To Guides for FREE.


  1. Jazz says:

    Hi. I have a problem with my windows vista- when I hit u it appears as 4- a few other keys (5 of them) have the same problem. Please help. Many thanks for the future fix.

  2. Sandra Lea Barr says:

    I want to expand the partition on my (C:) drive. When in Disk Management, the dialog box has the “Shrink Volume” enabled, and no matter what steps I do, I cannot enable the “Extend Volume.” Any ideas?

    • What Windows Operating system are you using ? Vista, XP or Windows 7 ?

      • Sandra Lea Barr says:

        Silly you, the title for this webpage is “Troubleshoot Common Window Vista Problems.” I’ll let you figure it out from here:)

        • just want to know which OS because many people ask for win 7 or xp. Anyway, if you want to enable th extend volume option, just create an unallocated space, delete any drive that you don’t need anymore. if you dont do this, you will find the extend volume option grayed out. just delete any drive, note : you are only deleting a drive and not a partition. You need to do this because there is no unallocated space yet. So first delete the drive and to create an unallocated space you will have to delete the partition. Now right-click on this Free Space and select Delete Partition. Once you’ve done with this, you can see the option to extend volume.


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