My first look at Windows Vista

22 July 2006

The other day I installed Windows Vista Beta 2 and plugged in my IPOD to see whether my 'on the road' set up still works. The first shock was that my beloved File Manager (winfile.exe) does no longer run. The procedure entry point SheConvertPathW is longer in shell32.dll. Dependency Walker shows that some other functions are missing as well SheConvertDirW, SheGetDirW, SheShortenPathW and that there are also functions missing in SHLWAPI.DLL and IEFRAME.DLL. The first lot has most likely to do with the handling of 8+3 DOS file names. The really interesting thing here is though that as far as I know Microsoft breaks NT for the first time ever. I have a command line unzipper from 1992 and it still works fine for me and works in Vista. We have to wait and see how many other older application are not running anymore. Turns out those functions above are undocumented and should have not been used by third party software, so I guess Microsoft had every right to finally remove them.

Gosh, the IIS administration looks totally different, I have to get used to that.

The name game

To me it's always NT 6 or if you count properly it's NT Release 4, (3.1=1, 4.0=2, 2000=3, Vista=4). XP was just a point release (5.1) It's also funny that they started the whole drop the version and use the year in the name with Windows (2000) and now use it with most other applications except they don't use it with the Windows anymore (XP, Vista).

File Manager update: Dave Schneider wrote some Wrapper DLLs for Winfile.exe which avoid calling the removed functions. With his help my beloved File Manager works again, even under Windows Server 2008 64 Bit. Check Dave's page at

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