When I installed RC1, it took the usual 20min. Saturday when I installed RC2 it took 1hr and 45min. I had to think about it for a little while until I realized what it could be, but now I think I know. One thing that was really neat about installing RC2 is that it was the first time I didn’t have to load drivers for my SATA controller. I was pleasantly surprised that this far down the road Microsoft finally provided a generic SATA controller driver. Unfortunately, it seems to have some serious capatibility issues with my Promise FastTrack 378 controller. Basically some writes to disk (seems like writes only, but I dunnuh for sure) will cause the writing program to hang for upwards of five minutes at a time. Worse though is that I figured that today I would just go and install the real controller drivers that I had searched high and low for and finally enabled me to run Vista, but RC2 just won’t accept them… says they’re not compatible with my controller. Also, the audio driver supplied for my RealTek by MS via Windows Update on RC1 was working, but in RC2 I hear it “pop” when it initializes and then the device stops working.
Argh! Never good when things take a step backwards. Anywho, I can say that when that driver isn’t “stalled” RC2 seems to be performing much better. I can live without the audio until it’s fixed, unfortunately the driver “stalling” is pretty crippling. I don’t know why it won’t install the SATA drivers I have. Could they really have changed something that radical since RC1 that the drivers wouldn’t work anymore? Maybe it’s because it’s not even recognizing it as the device it really is (it doesn’t show with its real device name in device manager)?
Update 10/9 5PM (ET):
I have filed a bug about this on Microsoft Connect. So far all I have gotten in response is the canned response of “check the manufacturer’s web site for the latest version of the DLL”. Ohhhh if only it were that simple…
Update 10/10 12PM (ET):
It turns out the version of the drivers that ship with RC2 for the Promise FastTrak are horribly broken, but the version that I have work flawlessly. As for what I said about not being able to install the drivers in RC2, I have to admit that was my fault. For whatever reason, my brain wasn’t working yesterday and I was trying to update the drivers for the HD and not the controller. Once I updated the driver for the controller and rebooted everything was awesome. I’ll make the version of the drivers that work available here for anyone else out there who has this same controller just in case they need it.