Remote Differential Compression – Vista highs and lows

Its like finding one of Windows Vista’s Holy Grails!
In my first post I talked about the length of time it takes to solve some technological problems and this is another of those great gotcha’s! I have been using Vista (32 & 64 bit flavours) since they were issued as Beta versions and have been very pleased with it. I agree, its very hardware intensive but as an overall package I like it and I continue to work with it on my 2Gb RAM laptop Smile every day. However, there has been one particular issue that has been driving me round the proverbial bend on both my 32-bit laptop and my 64-bit desktop.
Moving and copying files from one machine to another has been difficult, impossible and sometimes worse. There can be nothing more frustrating than wanting to do a simple drag-n-drop file copy from one machine to another in my home network and Vista just sits there. It claims to be working out how long this task is going to be taking, but don’t you belive it, this task will never happen! It used to work, once, a long time ago and I am not exactly sure what stopped it working altogether but I did the usual thing and trawled the net for a solution.
The Register ( has a great article about this with some useful links and from here I have finally found a solution that seems to work. Turn off Remote Differential Compression. Not sure why this has been causing so many problems but this has worked for me. I now see progress bars zipping accross the screen as files are transfered at the expected rate.
If you are not sure how to turn off Remote Differential Compression in Vista go to the Programs And Features section under the Control Panel and select Turn Windows features on or off. In the box that comes up deselect the Remote Differential Compression feature.
If you want to know more about Remote Differential Compression take a look here.
Update – March 2008 : Windows Vista SP1
I have just applied the new release of Service Pack 1 for Vista on both my Desktop and Laptop and tried transfering a 450 MB file from my desktop to my laptop using the wireless router….SmileSmileSmile…. the problem seems to be fixed…at least in this scenario. There was no long delay whilst Windows ‘Calculated the time remaining…’ or any problem transfering the file. I will keep doing some tests over the next few days, but hopefully this will mean the end to one of Vista’ biggest annoyances!

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