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Quirks and Tips For Upgrading To Vista

kdawson posted about 7 years ago | from the clean-but-safe dept.

Windows 236

jcatcw writes "Computerworld's Scot Finnie has some advice for those considering an upgrade to Vista. He praises the work Microsoft has done on the installation program, but thinks it still presents problems for those who wish to upgrade. He recommends the free Windows Vista Upgrade Adviser. Then, be sure to pick the best edition for your use." From the article: "Don't bother wiping your hard disk. Just run the in-place upgrade from your previous installation. You'll be given the option to perform either an Upgrade or Custom (advanced) installation. Opt for the Custom install to clean-install Vista, and Windows Vista Setup does something smart: It creates a folder called Windows.old in your root directory that contains your old Documents and Settings, Program Files and Windows folders. (Note that on my test machine, this added step used an additional 7GB of disk storage.)"

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FIST SPORT! (-1, Troll)

ringbarer (545020) | about 7 years ago | (#18418649)

Upgrading to Vista is still a better option than Ubuntu.

I experimented a lot in my college years (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419029)

In my college years, I experimented a lot with things considered deviant at the time. Homosexuality and Linux, the two always seemed to go together. Now that I have a family, I go to church and I run Windows (an American product, by the way). Summaries like this do bring back memories though...

Quirks and Tips For Avoiding Vista (0, Troll)

choongiri (840652) | about 7 years ago | (#18419031)

choongiri [carroll.org.uk] writes:

"Slashdot's A. Coward has some advice for those considering an upgrade [uncyclopedia.org] to Vista [uncyclopedia.org]. He huffs [uncyclopedia.org] the work Microsoft has done on the installation program [uncyclopedia.org], and thinks it still presents problems for those who wish to upgrade. He recommends the free Windows Vista Avoidance Adviser [funkatron.com]. Then, be sure to pick the best edition [ubuntu.com] for your use."

Why install Vista? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418651)

why would anyone disable a perfectly good computer?

Re:Why install Vista? (2, Insightful)

darth_MALL (657218) | about 7 years ago | (#18418727)

Way to post a hilarious (and fresh) comment and no alternative solution. Comedy Gold.

There is truth to that comment. (0)

NRAdude (166969) | about 7 years ago | (#18419737)

Vista has not improved anything over the common use of running a program, other than present a number of hurdles brought by various trespass of Legislature to impose the over-run homage of transient societies to draw wealth where none was deposited.

If anyone wants to try Windows Vista, then I suggest to first buy Linspire and use Click'N'Run to download Qemu [bellard.free.fr] or Bochs, then install Microsoft Windows Vista in that little sandbox. Only feed Vista what nothing else can eat.

Of'course, I just downloaded FreeSpire. LinSpire and FreeSpire are only building a handy UI to a Debian Package Management (apt), while Microsoft is subverting the entire system with illogical rules imposed by corruptible legislatures that don't even know NX in a processor from Annex of a territory or idea. Even now, Click'N'Run needs its repository freshened, so its better to support someone that actually has the Will to compete.

Of'course, ****Spire is the lesser evil, but they are on our leash (GPL).

c'mon (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418671)

259 bucks for an upgrade (other than for the crippled versions) is a bit steep.

Re:c'mon (2, Interesting)

tritonman (998572) | about 7 years ago | (#18419005)

It helps to know someone at MS, it only cost me 45 bucks for Vista Ultimate.

By the way, if you have an nVidia card, prepare for a nightmare. I spent about a week getting Vista to work with my video card, I have a GeForce MX 5500, it would crash every 15 minutes with an infinite loop driver error, even with the lastest drivers.

Upgrade advisor (4, Funny)

mastershake_phd (1050150) | about 7 years ago | (#18418677)

The upgrade adviser requires .NET to download both .NET and the upgrade adviser is about 28 MB. Twice the size of a Windows 3.1 install just to scan your hardware and tell you if its up to spec.

Downgrade Advisor (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418821)

I need a downgrade advisor. Like most of America, I do not need 80% of the functionality of Vista, but I do need its enhanced reliability.

How can I uninstall 80% of Vista after I have installed it on my 128-megabyte Pentium-II system?

I am 63 years young, and I use my computer only for e-mail and Yahoo! chat.

Re:Downgrade Advisor (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418867)

but I do need its enhanced reliability
what makes you think Vista is more reliable? all trolling aside, you cant guage the reliability of anything until it's been on the market for a while.

Re:Downgrade Advisor (2, Informative)

Ramble (940291) | about 7 years ago | (#18419237)

Actually if you use vLite to trim the Vista install CD you can cut out quite a lot of the stuff (plus fit it onto a 700MB CD). vLite [vlite.net]

Re:Downgrade Advisor (3, Informative)

Yoooder (1038520) | about 7 years ago | (#18419459)

If you are serious that you only use your computer for chat and email, then you _really_ should consider Ubuntu Linux. At least give it a try from the CD (you don't need to even touch your harddrive contents until you decide that you really want to install it). Booting from the CD gives you the entire OS, you can add/remove applications and use it like a normal OS. The only downside is running from a CD is inheritly slow--but seriously, save yourself several hundreds of dollars (or even into the thousand+ range considering hardware upgrades/office 2007) and give it a whirl.

Re:Downgrade Advisor (1)

CastrTroy (595695) | about 7 years ago | (#18419973)

Why are people so obsessed with Ubuntu? I've tried it out many times, and every time I'm disappointed. I like Mandriva much better. Using EasyURPMI you can install just about any application available for Linux at the click of a mouse. It's also dead easy to install and works with a wide variety of software. I really don't get what people see in Ubuntu. Please tell me what it is.

Re:Downgrade Advisor (3, Insightful)

COMON$ (806135) | about 7 years ago | (#18420273)

must be a hundred posts exactly like yours a day. Let me simplify the argument so you don't start one again.

I don't know why people use (insert distro here) I use (insert distro here) and it works great for anyone because (insert distro here) is so easy to use why would anyone use anything else?

To which you will get flaming littleman replies and people will hurl insults left and right as if you insulted their mom.

This argument is carried on with Chevy vs Ford, Catholics vs Protestant, Athiest vs Gnostic, Crunchy vs smooth peanut butter and on and on.

People have opinions, they like to stick to them like a religion, get used to it.

Before you chan "Chat", you need an ISP. (0)

NRAdude (166969) | about 7 years ago | (#18420123)

If you have any access to an immediate Ubuntu console, can list us the immediate client programs installed that immediately allow correct negotiation of dial-up phone links to the same as FreeSpire and Linspire?

There are more free 56k modem dial-up services being used by people that chat then is the warrant of an unobtrusive direct line of service through DSL or Cable. Of'course, it's easier to find an open WiFi or 802.11 access-point then it is to find an open LAN or open phone-line.. FreeSpire includes the negotiation client "dialers" for free and pay-services of AOL, Juno, NetZero, NetHere, and Earthlink. That's immediate national coverage, while most other Linux distributions I've encountered neglect these proprietary client programs.

Of'course, I haven't touched Ubuntu for about 2-years, and you may have the information on its capabilities now. I don't have time to search on their website. I would use that free time elsewhere. Thanks.

Re:Upgrade advisor (0)

NRAdude (166969) | about 7 years ago | (#18419885)

Of'course, Windows 3.1 can run in a Qemu or Bochs session more efficiently...just where Vista belongs.

Excuse me (1, Funny)

agent dero (680753) | about 7 years ago | (#18418683)

I think one of those infamous /. editors messed up the title again ...

Oh wait, are we still calling Vista an upgr...OOOHH PRETTAY.

Re:Excuse me (4, Funny)

TheMeuge (645043) | about 7 years ago | (#18418709)

Don't bother wiping your hard disk.
You'll have to do it a few days after installing Vista anyway.

Re:Excuse me (1)

acidosmosis (972141) | about 7 years ago | (#18419731)

Of course you will. If your toddler mistakes your hard disk for a slinky... That's probably the best credible excuse you will ever have for screwing up a Vista install.

my EUR 0.02: (4, Funny)

nietsch (112711) | about 7 years ago | (#18418687)

Maybe you could get some spare change for that piece of paper with a holy number on it if you sell it on ebay.

Re:my EUR 0.02: (1)

MSFanBoi2 (930319) | about 7 years ago | (#18418979)

Um, this is upgrading to Vista from XP. Not to Linux.

Can Unbutu simply upgrade an XP box and migrate files and allow 99% of all the applications that were running under XP to run?

Didn't think so. Mind you I'm not saying Unbutu is worse than Vista (or better for that matter), I'm only saying that jumping up and yelling "Install Unbutu" has nothing to do with this article in any way. For the majority of people Linux solves no problems nor gives any benefit over Windows.

In one word (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418703)

Advice for those considering upgrading to Vista: DON'T!

You'll get it soon enough with a new machine. Why put yourself through hell now?

Re:In one word (1)

Dr. Manhattan (29720) | about 7 years ago | (#18419297)

You'll get it soon enough with a new machine.

And you won't want it. Got the cheapest possible Dell desktop last week, except I bumped it up to 1GB RAM. It runs Vista Home Basic.

Holy crap what a pig! It's visibly sluggish - w/1GB of RAM. I'm seriously thinking about wiping it and installing XP. Apparently 4GB really is the sweet spot [slashdot.org]. Or at least, 1GB really really isn't.

Re:In one word (0)

Kelbear (870538) | about 7 years ago | (#18420035)

I've got 1gb of ram on my vista installation(home premium) too. No performance degradation compared to when it was running windows XP. Aero is on.

There are plenty of other reasons to want Vista. In practice, it's been just like windows XP so far, just some graphical changes and a change to folder navigation. No disadvantages thus far though, so the 10 dollars for shipping was worth it(Dell upgrade coupon).

Re:In one word (1)

acidosmosis (972141) | about 7 years ago | (#18419351)

Possibly due to the fact that some of us actually know how to install an operating system without screwing up that rather easy process. If you can't install Vista without issue, I would strongly suggest that you work at the local Burger King and turn in your drivers license so you don't kill anyone. Or perhaps at least don't eat the product you sale while doing so. You need the working brain cells that you do have concentrating on the road.

Vista runs like a charm for the majority of people with at least the common sense of a zoo animal.

It boggles my mind how anyone that has issues with Windows manages to so much as install Ubuntu, much less Fedora or heaven forbid, Gentoo.

Quick Tip: Wait? (5, Funny)

digitaldc (879047) | about 7 years ago | (#18418721)

Some Vista Vs. XP info:
http://www.tomshardware.com/2007/01/29/xp-vs-vista /page11.html#conclusion_ko_for_windows_vista [tomshardware.com]

"Overall, applications performed as expected, or executed slightly slower than under Windows XP."

Re:Quick Tip: Wait? (1)

brunascle (994197) | about 7 years ago | (#18418801)

Maximum PC got the same results an issue or two ago: you'll take a performance hit if you move from XP to Vista. they said the story might change when newer drives come out, though.

My experiences with Vista (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419873)

I haven't seen a fully working Vista box yet, and the ones I saw were brand new Dells! Here are a few tips based on what I've seen so far:

* Don't expect TV tuners to work right. The sound is getting horribly corrupted, probably by Vista's DRM, possibly by buggy drivers. Assuming you can get it to do anything at all.

* Apple was right about iTunes--do NOT install it yet, it will hose the system. I saw explorer crash in an endless loop, coming back each time only to die again. It was a total pain in the ass to make it through the bastardized start menu in time to get to the rollback option, which was the only way we could repair the system. When you have only a few seconds to find things, it's awful.

* For Office 2007, that stupid logo thing in the upper left is your File menu. It took quite a while to realize that that was an actual menu and not just some decoration. All the other options have been moved, too. I was not able to discern any logic to their placement; they just don't seem very organized. It's probably easy enough to relearn, but it's a waste of time. Uninstall any version of MS Works they give you and use OpenOffice, IMHO.

* Disable UAC immediately. It's MORE annoying than you think. It really does do crap like "You just double clicked this program. Execute it? [ Allow ] [ Cancel ]" That's right, no joking, it's a worthless piece of crap that's more annoying than Clippy! All it does is train people to click "allow" for everything, which is absolutely terrible for security. Dump IE for Firefox if you need more safety and learn to use the noscript, safe cache & safe history extensions. The last popup I saw was months ago and it was attempting to install malware on my system. The only reason I caught it was because popups are incredibly rare for me, so I immediately investigated what it was up to. Mouse gestures are great to bypass idiotic things like "no right click" so that you can view source on any page or popup, too.

Yeah, I admit that Vista is a little prettier, but it sucks CPU hard, and that's the ONLY thing going for it. It's less reliable, less usable and slower than XP. It has more artificial limits and they're more annoying than ever. Basically, it SUCKS ASS and I will personally avoid using it if I possibly can. If you're thinking about upgrading, don't. I honestly wouldn't upgrade if you paid me $10,000. It's that painful to use. I pity my friends who have it, Dell wouldn't even let them "downgrade" to XP.

Not this time (4, Interesting)

dnoyeb (547705) | about 7 years ago | (#18418729)

I have a strong feeling I will never upgrade to windows Vista. Only thing I need windows for is playing Eve-online. If they force me, i will let them know their game is costing me $200+ which will piss me off.

I can't believe 'home' editions can not fax or scan. must be a misprint. Surely since MS is trying to be all 'lifestyles' like everyone else these days. and scan is no different from camera.

Re:Not this time (-1, Flamebait)

stratjakt (596332) | about 7 years ago | (#18418819)

then fuck off, because you have nothing to add to this discussion.


nobody is forcing you to do anything.

pro-tip: everquest doesn't give a fuck about your whine one way or another, and wouldnt even take the time to read your "YOU R GUNNA lOSE A 3rd LEVL DUNGEON MASTER IF U DONT FIX YOUR WAYS!!" email.

Re:Not this time (1)

Seumas (6865) | about 7 years ago | (#18418843)

I'm sure I'll upgrade my one Windows box some time. Probably next time I build a new box (which I usually do once or twice a year). That way I'll get the OEM discount, too. Most people will eventually migrate to Windows Vista for gaming, because the experience offered by DirectX10 is stunning. I hate doing it, but until there is a viable gaming platform on PCs that do not require Microsoft's OS, that's the price we have to pay.

And for what that's worth, I understand that CCP is going to upgrade the Eve-Online engine in the future and actually plan to pump in DirectX10 support (though DirectX9 will still be supported). I don't know about you, but the idea of a well-built Eve-Online using all sorts of tasty DirectX10 goodness gets me excited.

Re:Not this time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418951)

How long before someone backports DirectX10 to Windows XP?

Re:Not this time (1)

tero (39203) | about 7 years ago | (#18419101)

Hey, in that case you can soon dump your Windows.
CCP announced they'll be releasing EVE clients for Linux and Mac soon (though they're done with co-op with TransGaming, so probably Wine based instead of native, but getting a fully supported Linux client is always something).

Re:Not this time (4, Informative)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | about 7 years ago | (#18419147)

I can't believe 'home' editions can not fax or scan. must be a misprint. Surely since MS is trying to be all 'lifestyles' like everyone else these days. and scan is no different from camera.

I'm assuming they're referring to using the built-in Windows Image Acquisition service for scanning and whatever the appropriate fax service is. In which case, I won't miss it. Chances are your scanner or fax/modem has drivers and/or software which handles all of this without using the less-functional built-in Windows abilities...

Easier said then done... (1)

msimm (580077) | about 7 years ago | (#18419495)

I mean eventually you'll want a new game maybe. I think their big card-up-the-sleeve is Direct X. If I recall new versions will not be supported on XP/et al. Combine that with the fact that 99.9% of all new PC's are already bundled to, meaning the user base will increase as people purchase shiny new hardware, and game publishers suddenly need to support it (like it or not). There you have it.

I mean you could keep using XP (which, at least so far, I like *a lot* better). But most people will just bite the bullet and they're really only worried about most people. It's a dog IMHO though. I'm curious if they'll be able to make it better or if they've simply made a mandatory ME.

Re:Not this time (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419565)

And that Home Basic doesn't even have the Aero interface or Media Centre functionality, which is most of the point of "upgrading" for the average user, yet still costs rather a lot.
It's so shitty that Acer say nobody in the right mind would want to use it [theregister.co.uk] and it probably exists mostly to make Home Premium look like more of a deal.

Yes but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418735)

Can you connect your old PC to the new one with a firewire cable and have the Vista import all the old user data?
Until it can do that, I won't even consider it for an upgrade.

Re:Yes but (0, Troll)

h2_plus_O (976551) | about 7 years ago | (#18419039)

Can you connect your old PC to the new one with a firewire cable and have the Vista import all the old user data?
Yes. You can export your user data via direct computer link (usb, firewire, network) or via file (burned to disk, stored on the hard drive, on a network share).

Re:Yes but (1)

h2_plus_O (976551) | about 7 years ago | (#18419415)

As long as I'm being modded troll here, I might as well be an informative one: Per technet [microsoft.com]:

Transfer files and setting using a network
Start Windows Easy Transfer on the computer from which you wish to migrate settings and files by browsing to the removable media or network drive containing the wizard files, and then double clicking migwiz.exe.
If you have any programs open, you will be prompted to close them. You can opt to save your work in each program, and then close them individually, or you can click Close All in Windows Easy Transfer to close all running programs at once. Click Next.
Determine the transfer method to use. Click Through a network.
Note Both computers must support the transfer method you choose. For example, both computers must be connected to the same network.
Click Connect directly via network to begin the transfer. Alternately, click Save to network location if you want to store the files and settings in a file to be loaded later. If you choose to store the data in a network location, you will be prompted to provide the path.
Click Everything - all user accounts, files, and program settings (recommended) to transfer all files and settings. You can also choose to determine exactly which files should be migrated by clicking either Only my user account, files, and program settings, or Custom.
Review the list of files and settings to be transferred, and then click Start to begin the transfer. Click Customize if you want to add or remove files or settings.
Note that you can ad-hoc a network over a firewire cable.

Re:Yes but (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419867)

thanks, that is pretty informative. now the question is, why doesn't anybody do this?
on all the windows replacements I've seen, I've never heard of anyone using this wizard to migrate their files.

abridged version (4, Funny)

nuzak (959558) | about 7 years ago | (#18418739)

"Don't bother

Works for me

some people have to bother (3, Insightful)

crabpeople (720852) | about 7 years ago | (#18419187)

This seems to be the popular sentiment, but you will have to eventually. The CIO of my company decides to install vista on his machine. I am responsible for backing up, virus scanning, etc. I took a look at vista and was completely lost. At that moment I knew that if I didnt want to play the fool, I'd better learn this shit. Its an alien feeling to me to sit infront of a machine at work and not instantly know how to do everything. I didn't like that feeling.

I didnt do anything crazy like install it at home (2k 4ever), but I did install it on my main work pc. To tell you the truth, aside from the fact that there are no drivers and many programs no longer work, its not that different from xp. You have to turn all the crap off, change the folders back to classic, etc. After that it pretty much operates like winxp and win2k. Is it worth upgrading a working XP copy? Hell no! Is it worth learning about so that your comfortable? Hell yes.

If you had asked me a month ago if I planned to move to vista I would have laughed circles around you. Well m$ wins again i suppose. Its not all bad though. I rather enjoy "windows mail" the OE replacement. They have moved away from database based (pst/dbx) mail stores and now just dump raw EML files in directories (THANK YOU!!). Its also quite a bit faster than oe and sending and recieving mail. Infact if there was a standalone version, I would probably consider running it on my home machine. It even has a calander so I could finaly move people away from outlook. There is no way we would deploy it across the organization, but its nice to know in 5 years we wont have to have outlook on the machines.

If you fix computers, you will have to learn it eventually. Theres no use delaying the inevitable.

Re:some people have to bother (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419729)

If one day your CIO decided to turn his machine into a fish tank, and water was leaking, why should you be the one fixing the leaks? You're an IT worker, not a plumber. Installing Vista is the same: it turns a computer into "something else".

Re:some people have to bother (1)

Kelbear (870538) | about 7 years ago | (#18420151)

Did you know that support for Hotmail was discarded in Windows Mail? I had a good laugh at that. My various hotmail accounts are what I give out online to receive all the spam from web-registration.

I upgraded to Vista with a similar intent. It was just 10 bucks for shipping to use the Dell upgrade coupon on my laptop and I wanted to take a look at Vista for myself, I'm probably going to have to confront it sooner or later. It's working pretty much just like XP right now, just a different path to get where I'm going. Aside from not being able to use Outlook to get at my spamboxes, it's pretty much the same(and I use Gmail for the mail that's important to me anyway).

Don't bother (2, Insightful)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | about 7 years ago | (#18419853)

As I was reading TFA [computerworld.com] I followed this link to an article about the new GUI [computerworld.com] complete with screenshots.

After viewing the screenshots I've determined that most of the new features in Vista are a rehash of the same graphical tools that sysadmins have been using for years--except now they're brushed up with Apple polish and included on mass market consumer m0dels. The vast majority of the population won't ever care about or use them. The desktop seems to be the MS edition of Sun's Looking Glass whose capabilities have come to fruition in the free software realm through Gnome, Enlightenment, Beryl, and KDE.

The question I have is: what is really new and improved in Vista?

The progression from Win95, through 98, through 2k, through ME, through XP, to Vista is like reading a flame war between two contestants who never give up: each revision expands on the previous base to produce a progressively larger work. To be fair current GNU/Linux offerings seem to be inheriting the same progressive bloat though not to the same extent. Unlike flame war contestants, though, OS designers are supposed to look for ways to streamline the final product and deliver top performance with maximum efficiency. While Vista has (by screenshots) top performance it isn't much further ahead of free software for the millions which MS has spent preparing it.

In conclusion I'll definitely agree: Don't bother.

Re:Don't bother (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419887)

Are you tired of the antics of HomelessInLaJolla? Well, then do something about it. Go to this site: http://lajollalibrary.org/easymessage.htm [lajollalibrary.org] and paste in the following letter to the form, and send it to the library. If we all work together, we might be able to stop this troll from ruining the online experience of the rest of us. If you do not wish to use a web form, you can also contact the La Jolla Administrator using the phone number listed on this page: http://lajollalibrary.org/contact.htm [lajollalibrary.org]


Dear Administrator of the La Jolla Library,
I would like to call to your attention the harassing, provoking, and potentially illegal on-line activities one of your patrons is utilizing your bandwidth for. This person claims to be Mr. Steven Baumeister, a 31 year old Homeless man who uses the alias HomelessInLaJolla on the website Slashdot.org.

Treason [m-w.com] is defined as the offense of attempting by overt acts to overthrow the government of the state to which the offender owes allegiance or to kill or personally injure the sovereign or the sovereign's family.

HomelessInLaJolla is advocating treasonous activities when he wrote about overthrowing the United States Government in his on-line journal at this link where he advocates targetting family members: http://slashdot.org/~HomelessInLaJolla/journal/166 371 [slashdot.org]

He has also requested information on exploits he could use to compromise your library computer systems: http://slashdot.org/~HomelessInLaJolla/journal/166 587 [slashdot.org]

He has posted potentially libelous statements about one Mr. Tom Darling: http://slashdot.org/~HomelessInLaJolla/journal/164 024 [slashdot.org], and http://slashdot.org/~HomelessInLaJolla/journal/165 060 [slashdot.org] and potentially libelous statements about his brother, here: http://slashdot.org/~HomelessInLaJolla/journal/163 984 [slashdot.org]

He has also admitted to harassing your patrons if they approach the door before your building opens: http://slashdot.org/~HomelessInLaJolla/journal/164 134 [slashdot.org]

He also harasses with combatitive and profane language anyone who disagrees with him or questions him: http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=226913&cid=183 80391 [slashdot.org]

Mr. Baumeister's actions reflect poorly on the good name of your organization. It might be in your best interest to discuss Mr. Baumeister's potentially illegal activities with him, as he is using your equipment to engage in these activities, or perhaps to restrict Mr. Baumeister from using your facility and equipement to engage in potentially illegal activity.

[Your Name Here]

Keep it up (1)

HomelessInLaJolla (1026842) | about 7 years ago | (#18420139)

Keep up the good work. The world needs to know that there are people like you on the internet: people who have nothing better to do than to harass a homeless and unemployed man (for whatever reason) behind the veil of network anonymity.

I recommend... (4, Funny)

Steve--Balllmer (1070854) | about 7 years ago | (#18418775)

buying the most expensive, costliest version there is. In fact, buy 2 or 3. Vista is just that good. Regards, Steve Bal... uh I mean, Eve Kalmer (damn... forgot to log in as AC.)

Re:I recommend... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419367)

I agree!


Teve Torbes

Quick! (4, Funny)

jeevesbond (1066726) | about 7 years ago | (#18418813)

Tag this 'slownewsday'

What is this pro-Microsoft peice doing on Slashdot?! There's nothing slamming Vista, nothing on DRM, there isn't even a flying chair or mention of upgrading to Ubuntu instead. I'm disgusted!

From the artice:

I tested Microsoft's way of handling that exact situation, and it works fine.

What?! 'Works fine', isn't this sort of language explicitly disallowed by the Slashdot terms of service? I also did a search of the article and there's not a single instance of the string: 'Linux'.

Can we tag as "appledidit"? (5, Interesting)

Kadin2048 (468275) | about 7 years ago | (#18419301)

I figured this was just here, because it's been a feature of Mac OS in virtually every version since 10.2, released 2002 IIRC.

It's called "Archive and Install," and it did exactly what's being described. It moved the old system into a folder and then installed a fresh copy on the root level of the HD.

To be honest, I'm rather surprised if this is the first time Windows has offered such a feature. Given the seeming regularity with which Windows seems to like being reinstalled it seems like a no-brainer. How many focus groups did it take them to come up with this?

Re:Can we tag as "appledidit"? (1)

swillden (191260) | about 7 years ago | (#18419751)

I figured this was just here, because it's been a feature of Mac OS in virtually every version since 10.2, released 2002 IIRC.

And, of course, Debian Linux (and perhaps others) has done one step better for a decade -- why move all your documents and files into an "old stuff" folder? Debian just leaves all your files in place and upgrades the system components.

Just say NO to upgrades (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418827)

Anyone who chooses to upgrade to, as opposed to freshly installing, a new Microsoft operating system deserves the pain, suffering and heartache that they will thereby receive.

It's a bad idea, just say NO.

Re:Just say NO to upgrades (1)

nizo (81281) | about 7 years ago | (#18419771)

But if you do decide to upgrade, don't forget the most important upgrade tool: a cheese grater. Before you start, run it across your tongue for two minutes; after that, no matter how painful the upgrade process is, it won't feel worse than those first two minutes.

upgrading is easy (1)

stim (732091) | about 7 years ago | (#18418829)

avoid the vista 'upgrade' rush! step one: browse to distrowatch. step two: download flavor-of-choice step three: enjoy!

Re:upgrading is easy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419723)

Step 4: Realize that there is a "Preview" button.

On the other hand (3, Insightful)

Z00L00K (682162) | about 7 years ago | (#18418837)

By doing a clean install of an operating system you will get rid of all junk files and junk data that tends to accumulate over time and degrade the performance of the system.

Personally I allocate a partition that's purely dedicated to operating system and software. So in case the OS does a real *uck-up* I won't lose all data and I only have to re-install. The only thing that I'm annoyed with is the "Documents and Settings" directory that is allocated on the OS partition, and I really would like to have the option of reallocating that beast to a different partition.

But of course - you can do it the M$ way and allocate everything in a huge partition and when shit happens you aren't up shit creek, you are up the mother of all shit rivers instead...

A yearly re-installation of Windows seems to be the frequency for me to keep things stable and performing.

Re:On the other hand (1)

geekoid (135745) | about 7 years ago | (#18418967)

Here at work all the document and setting duirectories are mapped to the network .

"If you right click and hold it while dragging the folder onto the second hard drives Icon, when you let go of the button a menu should pop up with a few options on it. One of these options is [i]MOVE HERE[/i]. When you click that option it will move all previous content and all future content to the second hard drive."

Re:On the other hand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418969)

what operating system are you using where having files laying around degrades it's performance? Must be something from the stone age.

Re:On the other hand (1)

DarthChris (960471) | about 7 years ago | (#18418995)

The only thing that I'm annoyed with is the "Documents and Settings" directory that is allocated on the OS partition, and I really would like to have the option of reallocating that beast to a different partition.
There's a registry setting somewhere that allows you to change this. It's hidden well, but it does exist. A quick google reveals an even simpler method here [microsoft.com].

Re:On the other hand (1)

danpsmith (922127) | about 7 years ago | (#18419433)

Personally I allocate a partition that's purely dedicated to operating system and software. So in case the OS does a real *uck-up* I won't lose all data and I only have to re-install. The only thing that I'm annoyed with is the "Documents and Settings" directory that is allocated on the OS partition, and I really would like to have the option of reallocating that beast to a different partition.

Yep, I used to too, and you are right. This USED to work great. That's until I bought a new Windows box with Windows Media Center. I tried Vista, didn't like it, wanted to go back. I found out that my "windows" disc does some kind of weirdo complete imaging instead of just installing the OS, deleting all my partitions including my data while just saying it would format C:. I had to buy an external USB disk and get a copy of ERD to get my data back and now the data is just staying there. I guess this smart approach doesn't even apply when you don't actually own windows anymore, you license it.

Reaction: I was just a little bit pissed. Conclusion: I'm moving to linux with all new hardware components. I know I won't have this problem there.

Re:On the other hand (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419497)

Right-click on your "My Documents" folder and choose "Properties".
Enter a new path in the "Target" field pointing to the new location you want.
Click on the "Move" button.
Click on the "OK" button.

God, that was SOOOOO hard.................

Re:On the other hand (1)

acidosmosis (972141) | about 7 years ago | (#18419611)

You CAN "reallocate that beast" to another partition. It takes a simple right click on your My Documents folder to direct it another location.

I have to ask. What exactly should Microsoft have done? Automatically locate the My Documents folder on another partition? When the majority of people have a hard time understanding how to right-click the mouse or locate files on their computer, you don't want to go screwing with their hard drive adding new drive letters.

Re:On the other hand (1)

vux984 (928602) | about 7 years ago | (#18419707)

The only thing that I'm annoyed with is the "Documents and Settings" directory that is allocated on the OS partition, and I really would like to have the option of reallocating that beast to a different partition.

There are actually a couple ways of do this. In a server environment you can have roaming profiles. You can also achieve most of the effect with folder redirection (enough to move 'my documents', and 'application data', and 'desktop') which are the big ones.
You can even move the whole documents and settings folder structure but its a more involved 'registry hack'.

All 3 work like a charm, in that they do exactly what you expect, and windows runs just fine like that. The only problems tend to come from software where the locations of these folders are 'hard-coded' instead of querying the OS for their proper locations.

Re:On the other hand (1)

gad_zuki! (70830) | about 7 years ago | (#18419911)

Not only can you move it or change the default paths for desktop, my docs, etc you *should* be doing backups of your stuff. Blaming MS for not out of the box letting you put a profile folder on a different partition is being really really lazy in the FUD department. Not to mention I hope you arent going to put everything on a different partition on the same disk. What happens if that disk dies and you still dont have backups?

...Tips For Upgrading To Vista (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418841)


I can attest to the upgrade behavior (2, Interesting)

casualsax3 (875131) | about 7 years ago | (#18418855)

This also happened to me when I went from RC2 to Vista Business Final - it made a backup directory which I found nice and incredibly helpful. It really takes a lot of the worry about reinstalling.

No going back afterward! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18418933)

What they fail to explain is that if you install Vista via an upgrade, you can't "uninstall" or go back to XP realistically without wiping out your system and starting all over again.

This happened to me. And, though Microsoft offers a 45-day refund, what the heck are you supposed to do with your system (as mine) when you depend on it, and a complex configuration you've spend a long time building? That easily exceeds the 45-day period. Of course, if you're smart, you can find out how to extend the evaluation period, but still.

Bad Microsoft. I don't *care* if there was an option for having Windows.old - it's still bad practice to *not* explain and make this obvious.

Re:No going back afterward! (2, Informative)

east coast (590680) | about 7 years ago | (#18419293)

what the heck are you supposed to do with your system (as mine) when you depend on it, and a complex configuration you've spend a long time building?

Image it first? That's my guess.

Not to slight you but anytime you're doing an operation of this magnitude on a system that you truely value the information on you should take steps to create some type of backup of said system in case of any number of failures. In your case you stepped into an unproven product (and no, I'm not MS bashing by saying that) on what you make seem like a critical system. Anything could have happened, be thankful it went as well as it did. You seriously risked total data loss.

Bad Microsoft. I don't *care* if there was an option for having Windows.old - it's still bad practice to *not* explain and make this obvious.

Again, not to slight you but anyone with any significant time using PCs can tell you that installs of this nature normally aren't very easy to roll back if it's an option at all. Not to say that MS has put out a good product and probably didn't fumble the ball in some aspect (again, not MS bashing, I simply haven't used Vista) but normally MS is fairly good at pointing out to users that OS upgrades and service packs may (as in probably will) cause system changes that simply can not be undone.

OSs aren't meant to do everything except wipe. Users need to be aware of the potential data loss/system failures they face without having their hands held through the process. Unless you're a "n00b" you should have known better than to simply "flick the switch" and hope for the best.

Hopefully making images of such a vital PC will become a practice in your future instead of another hindsight regret.

Re:No going back afterward! (1)

crabpeople (720852) | about 7 years ago | (#18419489)

"what the heck are you supposed to do with your system (as mine) when you depend on it, and a complex configuration you've spend a long time building?"
Um, don't upgrade it?

What a ridiculous thing to say. Blaming m$ is cool and all, but you cant blame them for your lack of upgrade planning/testing/FORESIGHT. M$ bashing is getting pretty sad if that's the best you can come up with.

Reasons I won't upgrade... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419041)

I received a free upgrade to Vista Home Premium with my Dell XPS 410 I ordered before X-Mas. (Note: I was too lazy and over-worked to build my own PC this time, and this was for gaming, so Linux wasn't a huge option.) I was doing some checking the other day, and on Dell's support site was a firmware upgrade for my DVD burner, to fix Vista compatibility issues. I am not sure I want to know what would cause a DVD-Burner to break in Vista, but it was a scary thought. There was also Dell's total lack of Vista support in the upgrade process. I love how they refused to guarantee that stuff that came with my PC would work. This includes Norton AV or the CD/DVD Authoring software that came with my computer.

If part of the value of my PC is in this software, shouldn't my "Free Upgrade" include some sort of guarantee that I will not lose the value of my PC? Of course, the stories of driver issues and performance issues, didn't make me any quicker to change. I am not risking losing any performance, considering I spent a good deal of money to get the system the way I wanted it. Finally, I think the fact that the Dell agreement almost read like they would be pre-emptively cutting off my XP Key was not high on my list. This basically prevents downgrading, and if I got Vista and it sucked, I would want to go back to XP.

Honestly, my upgrade advice to people in business situations has been no. To those with home uses, I have recommended a switch to Linux. I would like to recommend more Linux switching to business users, but there are just a few things that some of them cannot give up just yet.

Re:Reasons I won't upgrade... (1)

h2_plus_O (976551) | about 7 years ago | (#18419189)

If part of the value of my PC is in this software, shouldn't my "Free Upgrade" include some sort of guarantee that I will not lose the value of my PC? Of course, the stories of driver issues and performance issues, didn't make me any quicker to change.
This is why the Upgrade Advisor might be valuable to you- you can run it beforehand and it'll flag known issues (like 'this sound card doesn't have vista drivers' or 'that app will not work') before you've made any commitment. I've migrated several machines (mostly OEM boxen, many of them Dell- it's what we've got) to Vista as part of my testing and I haven't found any issues that the 'Upgrade Advisor' missed. YMMV tho.

Re: Quirks and Tips For Upgrading To Vista (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419071)

So I will get a Vista that works like an XP w/o DRM and all that?

Or is this a hype-howto-for-early-adaptors-who-are-unable-to-ad mit-they-spend-money-on-shit-that-does-noting-bett er-but-everything-slower-than-XP?

". . .used an additional 7GB of of disk storage." (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419095)

. . .Windows Vista Setup does something smart: It creates a folder called Windows.old in your root directory that contains your old Documents and Settings, Program Files and Windows folders. (Note that on my test machine, this added step used an additional 7GB of disk storage.)

Of which 6.9GB was midget pr0n.

For gamers, it's all about the video card (1)

Nukenbar2 (591848) | about 7 years ago | (#18419107)

If you are a gamer at all, your biggest concern has to be your video card drivers. If you have and Nvidia card, check here [nvidia.com]. You will read many stories of video corruption or SLI failing to work.

Obviously this would be a concern for anyone upgrading to Vista, but there doesn't seem to be too much trouble for just basic 2D and Aero functionality...

Be careful with in-place upgrade (4, Informative)

duffbeer703 (177751) | about 7 years ago | (#18419153)

While alot of things get moved to Windows.old, other things don't. Make sure you backup your stuff!

For example, Firefox bookmarks in are stored an application data folder, which doesn't get moved.

Re:Be careful with in-place upgrade (3, Informative)

crabpeople (720852) | about 7 years ago | (#18419667)

FUD or ignorance. It moves everything from my documents, program files and %systemroot% into windows.old. This includes "C:\Windows.old\Documents and Settings\USERNAME\Application Data\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\default.v4c" which is where your bookmarks are stored. I didnt even have to reinstall any plugins. You do have to copy the folder manually, but your post makes it sound like windows just deletes it which it assuredly does not.

Upgrade To... Windows 2000 (2)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419313)

Given the complete and utter riduculousness that is Windows Activation, your best bet is to upgrade to Windows 2000. It seems like Windows downgrades with every release aside from slicker graphics. Windows Activation is also a total insult to the consumer. Think about it - they expect consumers to call in and explain themselves whenever they upgrade or try to (legally!) move their license to another computer. And watch out for the OEM scams where you don't actually get a license to Windows with your new machine, just a license to run Windows on that particular machine and, if it breaks down or whatever, oh well, tough luck for you.

If the software industry goes the Window Activation route, soon, with the same frequency as personal firewall confirm/deny messages, you'll be getting messages on your screen: "This piece of software has detected something anamalous with your usage pattern. Call xxx-xxx-xxxx and explain yourself immediately."

Typo (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | about 7 years ago | (#18419399)

There's a typo in the original article. Should read:

Don't bother wiping your hard disk. Just run the in-place upgrade from your previous infestation.

best tip (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#18419647)

The best tip for upgrading to Vista is "Dont" upgrade to Vista.

Blech (1)

kitsunewarlock (971818) | about 7 years ago | (#18419745)

If you don't have a harddrive to spare, don't install it. If you do, and find out you'd prefer XP or Linux or something, it's a royal bitch to knock windows out of their. Heck, even harddrives connected to Vista (i.e. secondaries) tend to bugger sometimes too and you'll get the ubiquious "cannot install another OS, you have Vista."

Why would you put yourself through this? (2)

HangingChad (677530) | about 7 years ago | (#18420003)

I'm not going to dig on Vista or MSFT. I don't use their products at home or at work, if I can avoid doing so, but that's not a good reason to rip on them or people wanting to try Vista. I'm guessing that the majority of those attempting a Vista upgrade already are aware they have the option to go with Apple or Linux and have a reason for not going that route.

I'm curious about why those of you doing are putting yourself through the exercise? What's compelling you to try Vista now? As opposed to waiting a few months until the compatibility issues are sorted out or it comes with a new PC? I'm not sure Vista will ever support every video, sound or ethernet card from the beginning of computer time and I'm not sure it's a good use of MSFT's resources to attempt that kind of massive hardware reach back.

So why now? Is there some feature you really want? Are there games that are Vista only? Or is just techno-lust at this stage? Wanting to be technically proficient in MSFT's latest and greatest? There's no right answer here, I'm really wondering.

Or did I miss the big rally where everyone filed by the podium where some guy hit you in the forehead while yelling, "The power of Ballmer compels you!" ;)

Is Windows ready for the desktop? (3, Insightful)

the_womble (580291) | about 7 years ago | (#18420029)

Do you really expect grannys(or Joe sixpack/whatever we are calling typical users this week) to be able to cope with this. How can they cope with picking from mutiple versions (the comparison grid in the article has 27 rows!), downloading software to check that there hardware is compatible and then the install itself.

After all this (again according to the article), they may find that the Windows XP software they buy (or already have) will not work on it. They just want to be able to go to a shop, buy software, and know it will work.

Windows is find for geeks who know it, but the average users is better off with something that works out of the box like MacOS or Ubuntu.
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