Microsoft have released a pair of Update packs for Windows Vista, which are designed to improve performance and compatibility.
For photographers, the most important fixes relate to copying large files - it would take forever to calculate the time required, there were long delays when exiting the Photos screen saver, and Canon EOS 1d and 1Ds RAW images would suffer data loss in the image file when being edited! Also, the same Canon files could be corrupted after using the Windows Photo Gallery or Explorer to edit the Metadata.
Among the other reported fixes are improvements for speeding up Vista's hibernate and resume performance, better graphics card stability, improved compatibility with printers, tweaking Vista's memory management capabilities, better HD DVD/Blu-ray playback, and improvements in file transfer speed.
Both updates are currently downloadable from the Microsoft knowledge base. Update KB938194 is about 2Mb and can be accessed here, while Update KB938979 is about 10Mb and can be accessed here. The Updates are available for both 64-bit and 32-bit Vista.
Fix KB938194 cures the following problems:
- The screen may go blank when you try to upgrade the video driver on a Windows Vista-based computer.
- The computer stops responding, and you receive a "Display driver stopped responding and has recovered" error message. You can restart the computer only by pressing the computer's power button.
- The computer stops responding or restarts unexpectedly when you play video games or perform desktop operations.
- The Diagnostic Policy Service (DPS) stops responding when the computer is under heavy load or when very little memory is available. This problem prevents diagnostics from working.
- The screen goes blank after an external display device that is connected to the computer is turned off. For example, this problem may occur when a projector is turned off during a presentation.
- There are stability issues with some graphics processing units (GPUs). These issues could cause GPUs to stop responding (hang).
- Visual appearance issues occur when you play graphics-intensive games.
- You experience poor playback quality when you play HD DVD disks or Blu-ray disks on a large monitor.
- Applications that load the Netcfgx.dll component exit unexpectedly.
- Windows Calendar exits unexpectedly after you create a new appointment, create a new task, and then restart the computer.
- Internet Connection Sharing stops responding after you upgrade a computer that is running Microsoft Windows XP to Windows Vista and then restart the computer.
- The Printer Spooler service stops unexpectedly.
- You receive a "Stop 0x0000009F" error when you put the computer to sleep while a Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP) connection is active.
Update KB938979 fixes the following:
- You experience a long delay when you try to exit the Photos screen saver.
- A memory leak occurs when you use the Windows Energy screen saver.
- If User Account Control is disabled on the computer, you cannot install a network printer successfully. This problem occurs if the network printer is hosted by a Windows XP-based or a Windows Server 2003-based computer.
- When you write data to an AVI file by using the AVIStreamWrite function, the file header of the AVI file is corrupted.
- When you copy or move a large file, the "estimated time remaining" takes a long time to be calculated and displayed.
- After you resume the computer from hibernation, it takes a long time to display the logon screen.
- When you synchronize an offline file to a server, the offline file is corrupted.
- If you edit an image file that uses the RAW image format, data loss occurs in the image file. This problem occurs if the RAW image is from any of the following digital SLR camera models: Canon EOS 1D or Canon EOS 1DS
- Files from a Canon EOD 1D or 1DS camera may be corrupted after you use Windows Photo Gallery, Windows Live Photo Gallery, or Windows Explorer to edit the file metadata in Windows Vista or in Windows XP Service Pack 2.
- After you resume the computer from hibernation, the computer loses its default gateway address.
- Poor memory management performance occurs.
You will have to go through the usual annoying Windows validation process if you want to download the files, but if you wait about a week, both fixes will be available through the normal Windows update process.