Windows XP established several new features to the Windows line, including:
- Windows XP has quicker start-up and hibernation sequences
- Windows XP has the ability to abandon a newer device driver in favour of the previous one, should a driver upgrade not produce desirable results
- Windows XP has a new, arguably more user-friendly interface, including the framework for developing themes for the desktop environment
- Windows XP enables fast user switching, which allows a user to save the current state and open applications of their desktop and allow another user to log on without losing that information
- Windows XP has clear type font rendering mechanism, which is designed to improve text readability on Liquid Crystal Display (LCD) and similar monitors
- Windows XP offers remote Desktop functionality, which allows users to connect to a computer running Windows XP from across a network or the Internet and access their applications, files, printers, and devices
- Windows XP offers support for most DSL modems and wireless network connections, as well as networking over FireWire, and Bluetooth.
- Windows XP features a new task-based graphical user interface.
Some of the noticeable improvements include:
- Whenever an operating system upgrade is announced, application compatibility becomes a pressing concern. Windows XP represents the convergence of the consumer line of Microsoft operating systems (Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows Millennium) and the business line of Microsoft operating systems (Windows NT, Windows 2000), and as such, the new operating system offers extensive compatibility with third-party applications for both home and business users.
- Windows XP is well-suited with almost all of the top 1000 applications that ran under Windows 95, Windows 98, and Windows Me, and almost every application that ran under Windows 2000, with the exception of anti-virus programs, system utilities, and backup applications (for which, in most cases, updates will be available from their manufacturers when Windows XP is released).
- Windows XP comprises Plug and Play support for hundreds of devices not covered by Windows 2000, and enhanced support for Universal Serial Bus (USB), the high-speed bus known as IEEE 1394, Peripheral Component Interconnect (PCI), and other buses.
- Windows XP now contains a utility called Shutdown Event Tracker, which provides a simple and standard mechanism you can use to consistently document the reasons for shutting down or restarting your computer. You can then use this information to analyse the root causes of shutdowns and develop a more complete understanding of your system environment.
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