Vista boot times for comparison

Vista LogoI recently looked at the Zonbu boot times compared with my Windows XP desktop.

One of the comments from a reader was that we should also consider Vista boot time. Gregoire from Zonbu is also fond of making comparisons to Vista.

I just timed the boot-up of my brand-new HP laptop, Vista Home Premium, with its dual core 2 GHz AMD Turion processor, 2GB of RAM and I’m not sure what speed hard drive. I believe its a 5400 RPM…

Power-on to Login

I run a BIOS password so I timed from hitting enter on the BIOS password to the Vista login screen. That ran 45s.

As someone pointed out, Vista plays some visual and psychological games to give you the impression of faster boot time. Linux could stand some improvements on this front and one reader indicated he thought work was being done already in this regard. Gregoire also mentioned that Zonbu do a few tricks to make application launch times seem faster as well.

Login to Desktop

From the Vista login screen to a functioning desktop appeared to be about 40s.

That gives us 45s to login and 40s to desktop, or 85s to functioning.

And then I noticed, as I started doing things, that various system-tray applications were still firing-up as I progressed. It took about 2 minutes before my FreeAVG came on and ran its daily update and other things kept appearing in my system tray.

Moreover, the system was sluggish for about 2-3 minutes from Vista login and the hard disk activity was excessive.

I don’t know what it was doing, but it is annoying.


I’m confident the first stage took ~45s, but I’m unsure at what point the clock should stop for the comparative desktop number.

I could certainly start launching applications within about 40s of inputting my Vista password, but I definitey did not have everything launched in the background or have full priority with my hard drive.

Best case, its quite a bit faster than the Zonbu, worst case it appears it may be slower.

-Mr. Zonbu


3 Responses to Vista boot times for comparison

  1. Pelle says:

    My Windows XP gives me the possibility of launching things minutes before they actually can get launched because of it still launching programs in the background.

  2. Dave says:

    Mr. Zonbu: Told ya :).

    Windows boots up pretty well, but it’s all the crap that starts after the initial boot that makes your system unusable until it’s finally done (as you said, ~2 minutes later AFTER the booting time itself). Linux/Unix are far better at this matter. When I boot up my Macbook Pro, once I see my desktop I can fire away instantly. Quicksilver (a 3rd party app I use) shows it’s splash screen, but it’s gone before you know it, and doesn’t hold me back to fire up Mail or Safari.

    I thought it’d be interesting to compare a today’s ‘standard’ OS like Vista to the boot-up times of the Zonbu, as the results you gave us before are far from bad. In fact, The boot up time is pretty fast! Especially if you compare them to Vista :).

  3. jeremy says:

    best to compare with the logged boot duration that vista records

    event viewer program
    – app and services logs/microsoft/windows/diagnostics-performance/operational

    I have 65 seconds (64579ms)

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