Windows Fiji: a world class failure

Windows Fiji: a world class failure

Summary: Before I get blasted by the uber-nerds, I'll tell you now. I've been playing with Windows 7 (6519) for a while, and Fiji, the new Windows Media Center TV Pack supposedly for Windows 7 for Windows Vista (ta, MJ) for a good few days.

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Before I get blasted by the uber-nerds, I'll tell you now. I've been playing with Windows 7 (6519) for a while, and Fiji, the new Windows Media Center TV Pack supposedly for Windows 7 for Windows Vista (ta, MJ) for a good few days.

fiji-setup-gallery1.pngfiji-screenshot-gallery1.png

For the life of me, I can't see any differences in 'Fiji' anywhere. I'm not a big MCE user; I don't have any need for it, my computer slows down to that of a dead tortoise when using it, and there are other programs out there I use instead. Why people are getting excited about something that's been developed and tested in the darkest of shadows, I can't understand - as far as I've seen through my own research, nobody knows outside Microsoft what the new features are.

Until now. And there aren't any. OK maybe there are a few, but be my guest - take a look at the 'Fiji' screenshot gallery because I can't see a difference between Vista RTM MCE, Vista SP1 MCE, Windows 7 6519 MCE and Vista SP1 "Fiji" MCE. The reason I installed it on my Vista SP1 machine is because the *.msu file used to install the patch (yes, a patch, and only 43mb too) doesn't seem to work on Windows 7. For me, that was one of the many ironies I found with Fiji.

'Fiji', the codename of the new TV pack, derives from the name of the country. After some research, I've come up with this. Back end of 2006, a coup took over the government and was announced on national television that a new leader was out there. This is the only technological link - a new "leader" (of the marketplace?) and broadcast television. That's it. Even on that account they'll be very much mistaken. Engadget have a gallery showing the TV guide and the new features; a must see for "geeks of the green button".

Students are world renown for lazing around, doing bugger all, drinking and pondering about life. What you don't know, is we spend that time doing all and everything mentioned, whilst watching television. Most students don't have a TV so are forced to use their laptops and computers.

Considering this update seems to have nothing new, why would something like this interest students? Most of the time we watch telly off YouTube or TV-Links, that is before it died a painful and excruciating death. If this is how Microsoft continues - not keeping the testers informed, not updating the beta software and providing little-to-no information on the product itself, it's no wonder why Vista failed, and probably more than likely the likely demise of Microsoft's next incubation - Windows 7.

The Fiji update comes as a 43mb MSU file, and has recently been displayed has having problems already in the Microsoft Knowledge Base. With the controversy that it'll be an OEM release only, to those getting new computers, how difficult would it really be to pop it on the Windows Update servers? The MSU filetype is designed to be a hotfix, which is what Fiji is, if I'm honest. Microsoft aren't just shooting themselves in both feet, it seems they're doing the full Mozambique drill on themselves.

For media loving students, I'm afraid this could be one of your darkest hours. Just when my Microsoft-serotonin levels were raising after a long winter of discontent, they've just plunged me into a deep despair of depressing anxiety, with what I can only describe as "utter crap".

mce-fiji-small.png[Update] for sake of ease, I've uploaded the Media Center Map - the menu layout for the Fiji pack. If there's any difference or something new you see, leave a TalkBack and let me know. If there is something new in there worth looking at, I'll do my best.

Topics: Software, Hardware, Microsoft, Mobility, Operating Systems, Windows

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48 comments
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  • people should stop complaining for what they still don't know!

    Did Microsoft announce that it will not be available via Windows Update? NO.
    So, people should stop complaining for something they still don't know! Just wait and keep your mouth in silence and you'll get this TV patch on Windows Update when it's ready
    qmlscycrajg
    • Keep talking like that....

      ...and you could end up being just as noteworthy as "kouzen" was here:

      http://blogs.zdnet.com/igeneration/?p=160

      Honorable mention right in the opening paragraph. ;-)
      MGP2
      • RE: Mark

        Don't tempt me.
        zwhittaker
    • By the way....

      http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/?p=1522

      In order to ensure that users get the best experience possible, [b]this update will only be available from OEMs[/b], as they are best positioned to provide the testing and hardware configurations for a great customer experience.

      [i]Did Microsoft announce that it will not be available via Windows Update? NO.[/i]

      Apparently they did. So, who should really um, keep their mouth in silence?
      MGP2
      • RE: By the way....

        I still think it'd make life easier rolling it out over WU though. Sure, they say that certain countries need the OEM's to essentially decide what's best - but if my country (the UK) isn't suitable, the Fiji patch hasn't done any damage. Sure, it hasn't done anything that's good either, but there's still no harm.

        Similar principle with the language packs. They rolled out every single damn language pack *automatically*, and if you didn't want one, you had to manually untick it. With 25 odd language packs at 250MB a pop, that's over 6GB taken up already. An extra 43MB patch won't make the blindest bit of difference.

        Oh politics. How you annoy me so.
        zwhittaker
  • Huh.

    You realize, of course, that there are no visible differences in Fiji, right?

    The changes are detailed here, and they're all under the hood: http://blogs.zdnet.com/microsoft/?p=1522
    WaruiKoohii
  • RE: Windows Fiji: a world class failure

    I know that now, but even with the new features (which I related back to Mary Jo's blog), I still can't see a blind bit of difference.
    zwhittaker
    • Can't see a difference

      This has to be a joke...

      Did you try getting the support for QAM or any of the other added features working? Or, did you just dbl click it and poke around and say, "Hey, doesn't look different, (even though I'm not a regular user), must be no difference."
      thomastmc
  • Zack, Wondering if...

    you have any experience/exposure, to things like
    MythTV or LinVDR or even VLC....

    (Not directly related)
    In some Markets AT&T is doing IPTV.
    Maybe it's just this side of the pond?
    LazLong
  • Horrible Article...

    It seems that YOU were expecting a whole new interface or product. Fiji adds new features like QAM support, which I for one am looking forward to.

    Also, it's no surprise that the update wouldn't install on W7. It's an alpha... it probably would have broken it anyways.

    And if MCE is bringing your computer to a halt, it maybe time to upgrade... The system I built last October for $450 runs it fine.
    thomastmc
    • Zack, make it a double...

      Looks like we might have two recipients of the kouzen honors award.
      MGP2
      • Awards...

        What's the award for laziest, most uninformed review?
        thomastmc
        • Not quite...

          It's for people who aren't happy unless they're criticizing others.

          Like they say, "Those who can, do. Those who can't do nothing but biotch about those who can."

          That's my ten cents
          My two cents is free
          MGP2
          • Isn't that what the author's doing?

            [i]It's for people who aren't happy unless they're criticizing others[/i]

            and the headline?

            [i]Windows Fiji: a world class failure[/i]

            The articles reads more like criticizing then an actual review, but hey, that's my 2 cents.
            AllKnowingAllSeeing
          • Hello?

            You do all realise this is a blog for students, written by a student. The main point of the article, said again, is to inform students that the Fiji TV pack is a world class failure and pointless, as nothing in the update relates to students or academics.

            Directors, film producers, lazy people who watch television all day - Fiji might be awesome for them, but for [b]students[/b], it's not.
            zwhittaker
          • Oh stop it.

            You screwed up. Just accept you were wrong and keep what's left of your dignity.
            Sleeper Service
          • Re: Hello?

            Zack, even if that's true,there's nothing that I saw in the article that indicated it was written for students. I've looked, and I can't see anything on the page that indicates this blog is geared towards students.

            But even with that said, IMO, if you're going to criticize it from a students perspective, you should still mention the features that were added, what they're for and so on.

            When you say that you can't see ANY difference, that implies that there's no difference at all, regardless of whether you're a student, new grad or a great grandmother.
            notsofast
          • Whose fault is that?

            This update to Media Cnter, which by all accounts does exactly what it is intended to do, is a failure? Because it has no features specific to academia? What a bizarre criterion!

            What could Microsoft have possibly done to redeem themselves in your eyes? Is not delivering extensions to the feature set enough for a mere update? What did you expect? You go on at length proclaiming Fiji a failure but never give a single meaningful reason why.

            Why even mention it not running on a alpha build of Windows 7? How does this even figure into consideration? By the time Win7 is a shipping product it will have its own iteration of Media Center. This may have new features not offered previously or it may only give parity with the state of MC at the time of release. Either way, Win7 is so far off it has no bearing on an update for the current product.

            When you declare something a failure you need to be prepared to state why this is and how it could have been otherwise. The requirement you give, offering features of specific interest to students and educators, is so vague as to be useless.
            epobirs
          • Critical Post...

            I'm sorry if I came off as someone who was just complaining to complain.
            thomastmc
          • RE: Critical Post...

            It's fine :) All here to raise opinions, thoughts, criticisms and the occasional bout of death threat.

            Nevertheless, I thrive off negativity :-)
            zwhittaker