Should I get Vista?

Q: I'm buying a computer and I keep hearing about Vista. What exactly is it and should I get it?

A: Windows Vista is an operating system that Microsoft developed to replace Windows XP. Its release date is January 30, 2007.

Should you wait till it comes out before buying a computer? Not really. Because like all Microsoft products, Vista is sure to have problems. Ordinary consumers like you and me are better off not touching it the first few months. We wait till the security experts declare it reasonably safe (probably after Microsoft comes out with a service pack or two) before making the switch.

If you are buying a computer now, do make sure it's Windows Vista Capable, with the following being the minimum requirements:

Processor:       800 MHz
Memory:         512 MB RAM
Graphics Card:  DirectX 9 capable (WDDM support recommended)
Graphics Memory:  128 MB
HDD capacity:       40 GB
HDD free space:    15GB
Optical drive:      DVD-ROM drive

Go for more if you can afford it. Visit Microsoft's Get Ready for Vista site to make sure your new computer is going to be "Premium Ready."