A few days ago I was copying a large amount of videos (over 5GB) from two computers over a wireless network. Of course, I was expecting the operation to be slow and take many hours. After many minutes of "Calculating time...", Vista was able to figure out how much time the copy operation was going to take, but the number was a total nonsense:


Now if you think about it 43,367 days is slightly more than 118 years. And don't forget the 7 hours! If you don't have a clue, don't try to guess. People expect computers to report numbers and facts, not wild speculation. If you look at the details, in fact, I had already copied about one fifth of the data (and that was probably less than an hour in the process) and the speed, even if low, was not that bad (less than 10 hours).

Now the real problem is that the user interface is far from informative. When copying a large file, the "Items remaining" section doesn't provide a significant feedback. This is also true when copying files on the lcoal computer or to and from a USB drive. I guess it is OK to have a simple view of the progress, but when you hit "more information" you should really get it. Which file is it copying? Which is the progress within that file? Even the simplest file management freeware tools provide this level of detail. In any case, some time later (after more data was copied and with a faster "speed") the forecast would look even worse (120 years, many days, and 19 hours):


Of course, the copy operation did take a few hours only. And by the way, what it the effect of hitting cancel? Will it keep the 1 GB I've already copied of "cancel" that as well? Indeed, the animation in the window is nicer than it was on XP, but it this progress? Maybe we'll get a proper file copy dialog in Windows... in a hundred years!