Windows Vista: good or bad?

argon27

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Jul 1, 2006
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I'm looking for a new computer and I have the choice between XP or Vista, but I am a little affraid by Vista, I don't want a computer who crash 50 time a days!!!

So, what' your experience with Vista?


Also, the DELL computers, they are a cheaper(200$ most of the time),but, are they reliable?

Thanks!
 

master_bates

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May 23, 2005
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Stick with XP

Vista has too many bugs

Dell's are good computers just make sure you have all the drivers

for it when you get it delivered in case you ever want to format.
 

GTA refugee

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My experience with Vista.

If you download big files often like I do, expect the screen to turn ghosty ( misty white ) once or twics a day. I use my computer about 4 hours a day.
 

thegreatwalooo

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Vista is good. If you get a new PC with XP your just going to have to update in the future. If you have enough RAM, decent video card, and a fast enough processor you shouldn't have any problems.
 
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Techman

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I have been running Vista since the beta stages. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it and it is much better than XP was at this point of it's life cycle. Anyone who is constantly dumping on Vista really hasn't used it very much. It is extremely stable and in more than a year and a half of using the retail version I have never had so much as one blue screen or system hang. And this is running on what would be considered a vastly outdated system by todays specs.

If you are buying a new system, look for an Intel dual core or quad core processor not AMD, a separate video card preferably...not onboard (built on the motherboard), and a minimum of 2GB of RAM. It will be difficult to find most brand name systems with a decent video card so you may have to settle for an onboard one. If that is the case try to find a system that doesn't share your system memory for the video and has dedicated memory for the onboard video card.

You can usually get some great deals at either Futureshop or Bestbuy on end of line systems.

Another note concerning Vista...do not under any circumstances purchase a system with Vista Basic on it. That is a sure sign of an underpowered system. The minimum acceptable version is Home Premium but if you can find a good deal on a system running Vista Ultimate, that is really the way to go.

The bottom line is that if you are buying a new system you are much better off with Vista than downgrading to a 7 year old XP operating system.

Techman
 

Techman

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Actually unless you are getting the 64bit version of Vista, there is no reason to go beyond 3 GB of RAM as 32bit operating systems will only address up to 3.3GB of memory.

If you are looking for a laptop, I would suggest Toshiba above the rest. Dell are a problem if service is required, Acer are low end and we have seen a lot of problems with them. HP/Compaq are ok if you are going to splurge for one of the high end systems but their lower end are marginal. Lenova, formerly IBM, are still among the best for business laptops.

If you are looking for a desktop, I would stay away from brand names all together and look for a reputable computer shop that builds their own. You will be able to get quality components and none of the added 'bonus software' that the brand names tend to load their systems with. It all depends what you want to do with your system. If you intend to play games, don't buy a brand name. If all you want is to surf the net and run MS Office, pick up a brand name.

One main difference is that brand name systems' power supplies are not strong enough to power a gamer video card. A high end power supply alone can run up to $400 if you want a stable system while you can probably buy an entire HP system for that price. And you can forget about upgrading the power supply in a brand name system.

It all depends what you want to do with your system.

Techman
 

korbel

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Techman said:
Actually unless you are getting the 64bit version of Vista, there is no reason to go beyond 3 GB of RAM as 32bit operating systems will only address up to 3.3GB of memory.

If you are looking for a laptop, I would suggest Toshiba above the rest. Dell are a problem if service is required, Acer are low end and we have seen a lot of problems with them. HP/Compaq are ok if you are going to splurge for one of the high end systems but their lower end are marginal. Lenova, formerly IBM, are still among the best for business laptops.

If you are looking for a desktop, I would stay away from brand names all together and look for a reputable computer shop that builds their own. You will be able to get quality components and none of the added 'bonus software' that the brand names tend to load their systems with. It all depends what you want to do with your system. If you intend to play games, don't buy a brand name. If all you want is to surf the net and run MS Office, pick up a brand name.

One main difference is that brand name systems' power supplies are not strong enough to power a gamer video card. A high end power supply alone can run up to $400 if you want a stable system while you can probably buy an entire HP system for that price. And you can forget about upgrading the power supply in a brand name system.

It all depends what you want to do with your system.

Techman
Hello Techman,

I had enough trouble with my first Dell a Dimension 8110, if I remember correctly, much of which was my own fault. However, my next Dell desktop, a Dimension E310 with an Intel Pentium 4 CPU 2.8 GHz and 512 Ram with Microsoft Windows XP Professional OPS 5.1.2600 has been just terrific. Combined with Trend Micro PC-cillin Internet Security 12 and using the Mozilla browser I have had no problems except for some developing slowness due to some accumulated spyware I foolishly let in by not adding safeties like Adaware or Spybot early. So after over a year of nearly faultless use I did an OPS reinstallation, which was self-installing with almost no effort from me and now it works at top performance again.

As for other computers I can't make comparisons against other contemporary systems. But I am happy with my Dell and the setup I have for various uses.

Cheers,

Korbel
 
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Lone Rider

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consider Mac

hi,

i have been working with an IBM compatible since the mid 1980s. While my current PC, a fully loaded Acer works great with windows xp, I am considering to make my next computer a Mac. Why? the operating system never bugs and also, my super fast computer has slowed considerably since the past 2 years. I routinely defragment my disk and perform various tasks such as spybot and other....

While the computer is working on a decent speed, it has still slowed down because of applications being added on the system while browsing the internet and other causes.

Mac seldom have these issues. Check out their website and take a tour of their system. Perhaps you may reconsider the entire windows platform

Techman, aside from reformatting my windows xp, do you have suggestions on how to get rid of clutter on the system?

Regards,

Lone Rider
 

Techman

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Lone Rider, if you have had your system for more than 2 years, you probably have 512MB or less of RAM. The first thing to do is upgrade your memory to at least 1GB. Don't worry, RAM is very cheap and easy to install yourself. Just make sure you unplug the power cable before installing it.:) The difference after you add a GB of RAM will be considerable. There have been a lot of changes in XP in the last few years due to updates and service packs. When XP first appeared it would run on 128MB of RAM. Not anymore.

If you want to clean your system of old files and other crap that builds up over the years, download a program called CCleaner. It does a great job. Spybot is a very good program for removing spyware and such but it is best to use it in combination with another program. Some like Ad Aware but I prefer one called SuperAntispyware. You can find both of these at www.download.com. One will usually find stuff the other one missed.
If you run Spybot in advanced mode you will be able to see all the programs that load at startup. Many of these are totally useless and only serve to slow down your system. Spybot will be able to give you a description of what these progs are and you can disable them with a click of the mouse. If something goes wrong afterwards, or you realize you really need one of the things you disabled, it just takes another click to put it back.

Personally I would never even consider a Mac of any type. I like to tinker with my system and have the availability of tons of hardware products to upgrade if and when I choose to do so. This is something you can't really do with a Mac. I also enjoy the large variety of software available for a PC, whether free from the net or commercial programs. Just go into any futureshop and compare the available programs for PC and Mac. And besides, there must be a reason that all the Mac owners seem to be loading XP on their systems to be able to do the things that OS/X can't. Makes me wonder why they bothered buying a Mac in the first place.

I love this video about Macs, it's very accurate actually. There are a few of them on this page. Check it out. :D http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axC-7O4Yq-w

vtguy, if everything that was talked about at Black Hat conferences in the last few years had come to pass, every PC in the world would have long since ceased to function. Try reading the comments on the article you posted to get a more realistic view of things.

Linux, while fun to play with, is no where near useable for the average, and even for most above average, home computer users. It is great as a web server or as a firewall box and for many other things. But it is in no way a suitable replacement for Windows or even Mac for the average user.

Techman
 

thegreatwalooo

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Techman said:
Actually unless you are getting the 64bit version of Vista, there is no reason to go beyond 3 GB of RAM as 32bit operating systems will only address up to 3.3GB of memory.Techman
Techman, I have a question: I thought that if Vista is only using the 3.3 GB of memory that the balance of the memory would go to use elswhere in the machine, like the video card.

Is that the case?

If not, and the max Vista will use is the 3.3 GB, wouldn't someone prefer to go a little over with 4GB instead of coming up short of the maximum performance with a 3 GB?

Looking forward to your comments.

Walooo
 

Special K

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Techman said:
If you run Spybot in advanced mode you will be able to see all the programs that load at startup. Many of these are totally useless and only serve to slow down your system. Spybot will be able to give you a description of what these progs are and you can disable them with a click of the mouse. If something goes wrong afterwards, or you realize you really need one of the things you disabled, it just takes another click to put it back.
Hi Tman,

Once you switch to advanced mode, what's the next step to getting the Spybot to tell you which programs load at startup? I've just switched mine from Default to Advanced.

Thanks!
 

Techman

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Walooo, that is actually a very good idea and I am embarrassed that it didn't occur to me. I guess I am too used to stand alone video cards! The best way to take advantage of this would be on a system that allows you to allocate the video memory in the system bios. I'm not sure if it would work on a system that allocates it dynamically once the O/S has loaded. But you are right in that considering the low price of RAM today it is not a bad idea to go with 4GB if you have the option.

One thing that I have noticed recently is that many brand name systems are being sold with 3GB of RAM so adding an extra GB should not add much to the cost of the system.

And while we are speaking of memory...some people on the net complain that Vista uses 50 to 60 percent of installed memory. Well that's nothing to complain about, it's actually something to be happy about. Vista actually uses as much of the memory in your system as it can comfortably use without lowering performance of the programs you are running. This way it avoids creating a swap file on the disk which lowers performance. When you load a memory intensive application such as a game, Vista will free up the required memory for that application by removing it from non essential functions of the O/S. Finally an O/S that can use the large amounts of RAM in today's systems right from when it first loads instead of waiting for a request from a program to use it. And if you have a high speed flash memory stick, Vista can also use the memory on it to speed up the system cache.

But that was a great idea and I will actually try it out on Monday when I set up a new system. I'll let you know how it goes.

Techman
 

Techman

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Dec 24, 2004
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Hey SK, how's it going?

When you load Spybot in advanced mode, you will notice some extra 'tabs' on the bottom right hand side. One of these is 'tools'. Click on it and in the main window you will find many options listed. You can put check marks in the ones you wish to have access to and they will appear on the list on the right side.

From the descriptions beside each option you should be able to easily find out what each is for. One of them is called system startup and it is here you will find all the little things that load at boot time. Most of them will have descriptions of what they are. Do not remove any of the ones at the bottom of that list that have to do with system.ini unless you really know what you are doing.;)

Have fun.

Oh by the way...Spybot also has a secure file shredder built into it. You can also find it under Tools menu. Great for getting rid of things permanently.

Techman
 

argon27

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Jul 1, 2006
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Thanks all for your great advices guys!

Vista sound not too bad finnaly
Now, what do you think on these:

Intel®Pentium® dual-core processor E2180 (1MB L2 Cache,2.00GHz,800 FSB) English
Genuine Windows Vista® Home Basic Service Pack 1 ( I will upgrade to vista premium of course)
2GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz- 2DIMMs
250GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™
16X DVD+/-RW Drive
20 inch E207WFP Widescreen Digital Flat Panel
Integrated Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 3100

For 40 buck I could upgrade the processor to : Intel® Core™2 Duo Processor E4600 (2MB L2 Cache,2.4GHz,800 FSB)


or for 150$ more I can get this:

Intel® Core™2 Q6600 Quad-Core (8MB L2 cache,2.4GHz,1066FSB)
Genuine Windows Vista® Home Premium Service Pack 1
3GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 800MHz - 4 DIMMs
250GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™
16x DVD+/-RW Drive
20 inch E207WFP Widescreen Digital Flat Panel
Integrated Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator 3100


Does it worth it or I should stick with the first choice? I use the computer only for internet surfing,music and video D/L, I don't play game.
 

Techman

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Definately go with the second choice. If you are doing anything with at all with video the extra 150 will be well spent. The first system is underpowered by todays standards and you will be much happier with the Quad Core box.

When you consider that you would really have to spend the extra 40 on the first system to upgrade the processor plus the cost of upgrading Vista basic to Premium, there won't be much price difference in the end anyways.

With the Quad you will have a system that you will be very happy with for years to come.

Techman
 

Special K

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Techman said:
Hey SK, how's it going?

When you load Spybot in advanced mode, you will notice some extra 'tabs' on the bottom right hand side. One of these is 'tools'. Click on it and in the main window you will find many options listed. You can put check marks in the ones you wish to have access to and they will appear on the list on the right side.

From the descriptions beside each option you should be able to easily find out what each is for. One of them is called system startup and it is here you will find all the little things that load at boot time. Most of them will have descriptions of what they are. Do not remove any of the ones at the bottom of that list that have to do with system.ini unless you really know what you are doing.;)

Have fun.

Oh by the way...Spybot also has a secure file shredder built into it. You can also find it under Tools menu. Great for getting rid of things permanently.

Techman
Techman,

As always, thanks again!!

SK
 

Special K

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Techman...I just checked it out. Things such as Iomega, Quicktime, SweetIm, HP Digital, Logitech, can all be disabled safely and if needed can just be grabbed from the programs menu, right?
 

Techman

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If you have a Logitech mouse or keyboard, leave that one. It loads the advanced functions. If it's just the updater go ahead and dump it. Quicktime is a real pain in tha ass. Even if you remove it it will just add itself again but there's no harm in trying. Generally you can check the descriptions that Spybot gives you to know if you should remove it or not. If you don't see the descriptions, look at the far right edge of the main window and you will see what kinda looks like an arrow in the middle of the right side edge. Click on it and it will expand to show you the descriptions of what everything is.