We did not see any show stoppers when we tested Vista at the Microsoft Platform Adoption Center, just minor issues that can be worked around.
A big cause of problems applications running on Vista can encounter is the new User Account Control Feature - which prevents user programs from modifying the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE Registry key, starting services and other system tasks unless they are executed with the "run as administrator" option. The good news is that because IDS runs as a Windows service it is not subject to UAC restrictions, so main IDS functionality is unaffected. Also since recent versions of IDS and CSDK support IPV6 there are no issues with the new TCP stack.
Note that IDS 10.0 is not currently supported on Vista - though the 11.10 release version will be. This does not mean tech support won't try and help, more that Vista compatibility fixes may not be back ported to 10. However these things are subject to change, so if you read this post after today verify the current support status with tech support.
Why use Vista?
One reason you might want to go to the trouble of installing Windows Vista is performance. If you have a machine with plenty of memory you can take advantage of improved caching algorithms and a re-written TCP/IP stack.
We didn't have much time for performance testing in Redmond, but based on a simple SQL fetch comparison between XP and Vista on a 2GB dual core machine - 500 users were around 18% faster on Vista and 1000 users were around 30% faster. Don't read much into this - set up realistic tests for your application - and if you have less memory all bets are off, Vista likes memory.
Known Problems and Workarounds
The following table lists some problems you might run into with IDS 10.0 and 11.10 Beta on Vista. If you have experienced any other Vista specific issues please comment.
|IDS Installer doesn't create a Command line Window icon||Start a command window and run %INFORMIXDIR%\%INFORMIXSERVER%.cmd to set your environment|
|Manually starting the Server Instance Manager (instmgr.exe) does not work||Right click instmgr.exe and select "Run as administrator"|
|Starting the IDS service using the starts.exe command does not work||Launch a command shell using the "Run as administrator" option and run starts.exe|
|Finderr.exe utility not working because WinHelp deprecated in Vista||Download and install WinHelp for Vista here|
|Setnet32 Help menu option and Docviewer not working||Download and install WinHelp for Vista here|
|Setnet32 cannot create a new server definition (SQLHOSTS entry)||Right click setnet32.exe and select "Run as administrator"|
One way to avoid all the problems associated with the User Account Control feature would be to disable it to get back behaviour similar to that of XP - not surprisingly Microsoft recommend not doing this.
Some issues you might see are systemic in that they are due to the operating system locking down services which were previously open rather than application incompatibility problems. An example is that machines will not be able to ping each other or connect to network sockets without first enabling netbios over TCP and Filesharing/Discovery services.
I will update this post if any new information comes to light.
Update 4/16/07: See advice on Installing the Informix JDBC Driver on Windows Vista on jgp.net.