I was looking through the Windows Vista updates and noticed that there were two optional updates. I decided to take a peak at those to see what they contained. Interestingly, one of two included the following in the description.

  • “When you copy or move a large file, the “estimated time remaining” takes a long time to be calculated and displayed.” Quoted from the accompanying kb article.
An example of the copy dialog showing that it is calculating the remaining time

Now, I am not sure about you but I copy a lot of files and therefore get to see this a lot; so, to me it is an annoying bug. Along the same lines, if nothing else, this tends to portray a bad image of the operating system. Because guess what your Mac or Linux fanboy friend is going to say when they see the copy dialog box? “If Vista takes this long to calculate the time that it needs to transfer files, I bet it will take twice as long to actually copy the files!” Considering all this I personally think that if this fix works then it should be a critical update 🙂

There have also been posts on the internet about how slow copying in Vista can sometimes be. You can refer to this, this, and this as examples. A while back I personally encountered these slow speeds with a few files that I was transferring but that only happened once.

Anyways, out of curiosity I did some simple benchmarking to figure out what this new hotfix fixed. In my test the calculation time decreased almost 10 seconds, where without the fix it took around 17 seconds to calculate out how long a 36 MB file would take to transfer, and after the fix (and restart) the time went down to 7 seconds for the same file. I did this test on a wireless network so the actual transfer took a little more than the time it took to calculate.

Final verdict? Get this fix even though it is released as an optional update.

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