This idea has been merged with geoprocessing progress in background needs better indicator.
The new (10.0) progress indicator is inadequate. I would like to see the separate window for the geoprocessing status including what step it is on as in previous versions. I would like to see it updated to have not just the percentage of the current step complete, but also the percentage of the entire operation complete. For instance, when caching a map service, calculate the number of tiles that will need to be created based on the number of scales selected, the tile size, and the extent of the map and display progress as a percentage of tiles created.
The old process window wasn't perfect though. You couldn't minimize it to the task bar. That would be a nice feature.
Another possible improvement to the progress indicator would be some kind of performance indicator. When calculations per second are the limiting factor in the speed of a process or it is a paging data due to memory limitations, it would be helpful to see where bottlenecks are being encountered by ArcGIS.
I'd also like to see a sort of geoprocessing capability index built in to the geoprocessing tab. It would take into account the hardware specifications of your current computer and show a graph of a selection of geoprocessing tasks and the estimated performance of your computer in executing them. It could also recommend hardware improvements that could be made, such as increasing RAM, or changing page file size, or purchasing a disc with faster I/O. It could even explain how having more processor cores won't allow faster processing, just multiple instances.
If ESRI is not going to make ArcGIS truly multithreaded, it should at least provide a mechanism to break a large job into x number of pieces so that multiple processors can work at the same time (licensing permitted).