I've just been reading a rather good story* on the New York Times, arising from emails and documents levered out of Microsoft by a class-action lawsuit, and showing that even the company's own VPs found that moving to Vista was more of a downgrade.
Microsoft's initial response to the problem of machines sold with Vista when they patently weren't up to it was to play with semantics. Instead of describing a PC is "Vista Ready," which might suggest that it might even run Vista, it would be described as "Vista Capable," which apparently makes no promises.
I believe the expression is "Rearranging the deckchairs on the Titanic."
*You may have to register to read this, but it seems to be a painless and spam-free process.