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 Post subject: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:00 pm 
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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Hi Scott,

I've been perusing the Web for a number of months now trying to get a handle on the general consensus with regard to the soon to be released Windows 7. Unfortunately, I'm left wondering about its necessity (or lack of) in my particular case.

As previously mentioned elsewhere, I purchased my first laptop (Lenovo R61 ThinkPad) last April. The laptop shipped with Vista Ultimate as per my specifications. Since Vista was the newest Windows operating system at the time, and having used nothing else besides Windows 98SE and earlier (and with an extremely minimal exposure to NT 3.51 and 4 when I was in school), I decided to skip the learning curve of XP in favour of the one for Vista. I had heard other people's views that XP was more responsive and less resource-hungry than Vista, but as I had purchased the laptop with Vista and as I had not previously used XP, I wanted to see for myself whether the Vista experience was a good one for me.

I like Vista. IMHO, it is a good operating system, and more secure and seemingly less prone to hangups and crashes than my previous Windows operating systems. As I only had a 142GB hard drive (actually originally 160GB... I've been told that the missing 18GB are used by Lenovo for restoration purposes), as is normal, I slowly started to notice that the large amount of storage I thought I had was not as much as I thought. Of course, I also noticed that Vista was slowing down a little as well. I upgraded the original 2GB of RAM memory to 4GB (with the thought of trying a 64-bit version of Vista... someday) and now, for the most part, Vista runs fine.

I gather that many people were NOT happy with the new Vista operating system, especially if they had previously purchased XP and finally got it to behave exactly as they wanted it to. As a result, Microsoft made a number of changes (refinements?) to placate XP aficionados, as well as people like me who had never used XP and were deciding to upgrade their equipment and software (including the OS). Personally, I don't like the idea of shelling out so much money for the FULL version scarcely a year and a half after having bought the Vista operating system, for a new operating system that is essentially just a better feeling Vista! (I feel as if Windows 7 should be Vista SP3!... perhaps I really don't understand operating system development.) Mind you, there are some nice touches, like the new way they deal with devices to be added to the system, and updating Media Player to deal with H.264 media. Nice but not show-stopping. The only thing that I would REALLY LIKE to have in Vista is the ability to use BitLocker on ANY storage medium I care to (including CDs, DVDs, and flash drives). I'd also like a better backup program with more flexibility especially with the ability to EASILY make changes to the images created (i.e. adding or deleting particular files).

Here are my questions:

1. Given the "newness" of my Vista, is there a particularly good reason for upgrading to Windows 7 rather than waiting for the next "best" OS from Microsoft?

OR,...

2. Is it time to look at a new OS... Ubuntu perhaps? (only half joking. I have been thinking about this.)

With regard to my second question, I'm not exactly thinking of deserting my Windows Vista OS. I'm rather seeking greater options. My views about loyalty have changed over the years. I have two orphaned Amiga computers which I loved when they first came out. I still have fond memories about them but since the death of their corporate support LONG AGO, they have seen barely any use in many, many years. In fact, it was the death of Commodore which necessitated the purchase of my first PC clone. I had considered purchasing a Mac, but since there seemed to be more options with the PC, I made my choice for greater options. I have another question somewhat related to this topic but I'll make it a separate post.

As always, thanks for your opinions in advance.

Paul


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 1:18 pm 
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Joined: Sun Feb 04, 2007 11:59 am
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Quote:
2. Is it time to look at a new OS... Ubuntu perhaps? (only half joking. I have been thinking about this.)


I would go with your option 2 and get a new OS: Windows XP Professional <g>

I think you can "downgrade" your vista to XP.

I'll be waiting for a while before giving up my XP.

Mike


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Wed Oct 21, 2009 3:01 pm 
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...having used nothing else besides Windows 98SE and earlier... ...I like Vista. IMHO, it is a good operating system, and more secure and seemingly less prone to hangups and crashes than my previous Windows operating systems.

Less crash prone than Win98SE? OK you got me there. Vista is better than Windows 98SE. <g>

Quote:
I don't like the idea of shelling out so much money for the FULL version scarcely a year and a half after having bought the Vista operating system, for a new operating system that is essentially just a better feeling Vista! (I feel as if Windows 7 should be Vista SP3!...

Exactly! I agree wholeheartedly.

Quote:
there are some nice touches, like... updating Media Player to deal with H.264 media.

I have little doubt that MS will release WMP 12 for Vista, but probably not for XP. Besides that, there are many excellent free 3rd party players to choose from, such as Winamp.

Quote:
Given the "newness" of my Vista, is there a particularly good reason for upgrading to Windows 7 rather than waiting for the next "best" OS from Microsoft?

If Microsoft charged a reasonable price for Windows (even for an upgrade license), I'd say upgrade to Windows 7 for sure. But since they don't, in most cases I'd say upgrading Windows is not worthwhile. By that I mean that it isn't worthwhile to pay the exhorbitant price for a *second* Windows license on a system for which you have already paid the Windows tax.

My rule of thumb is that you should only pay for Windows once. From a cost and practicality point of view, it doesn't make sense to upgrade. If the system has XP, then it should stay with XP. If the system has Vista (and you can stand it <g>), then it should stay with Vista. That means not upgrading to Windows 7, or whatever comes next.

To my way of thinking, new systems provide the opportunity to change. Any new systems I build (or purchase) from this point will most likely include either Windows XP or Windows 7 Pro, with the latter reserved for those systems where 64-bit operation (i.e. access to more than 4GB of RAM) is deemed worthwhile or necessary.

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Is it time to look at a new OS... Ubuntu perhaps? (only half joking. I have been thinking about this.)

So have I. In fact I'm actively seeking alternatives to any and all new Microsoft software. Office 2003 was the last Microsoft application I purchased (I install OpenOffice on all systems I build now) and Windows 7 may be the last Microsoft OS I go out of my way to buy. I'm not sure where the future lies, but I'll be investigating alternatives. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 5:31 pm 
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Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:25 am
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Location: London
Quote:
So have I. In fact I'm actively seeking alternatives to any and all new Microsoft software. Office 2003 was the last Microsoft application I purchased (I install OpenOffice on all systems I build now) and Windows 7 may be the last Microsoft OS I go out of my way to buy. I'm not sure where the future lies, but I'll be investigating alternatives. Scott.


I hear exactly what you're saying. The fact is, however, that it's difficult to get away from MS as they are the de facto standard. For example, I suggested to a friend, who had to write job applications, that he should give Open Office a try instead of buying MS Office. His reply was that all agencies wanted such documents in Word format and that Open Office didn't always format .doc files correctly. Likewise, while I think Unbuntu is a good operating system, to a persons that wants to play the latest games on their PC it will be pretty useless. I suppose the idea scenario from the customer's point of view would be having standard kernel, around which different software companies can write their own OS. I wouldn't hold your breath though!


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 6:35 pm 
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I suggested to a friend, who had to write job applications, that he should give Open Office a try instead of buying MS Office. His reply was that all agencies wanted such documents in Word format and that Open Office didn't always format .doc files correctly.

Being that OO reads and writes .doc files just fine, I'm guessing he never even gave it a shot. OO does incredibly well with most documents, and is virtually indistinguishable from Office in most regards. In fact I'd go so far to say that currently it is more like Office than Office, the latter referring to the non-standard 2007 version. <g>

I agree about Windows though, it is very hard to get away from that, and I'm fully expecting that for the future I'll be using a combination of Windows XP and Windows 7, depending on the specific hardware and software requirements. Still, I'd like to have an alternative OS for a fully functional system using all free or open source software like OpenOffice, FireFox, Thunderbird, etc. Scott.


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Thu Oct 22, 2009 7:32 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 15, 2009 1:27 pm
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Location: Stowmarket, Suffolk England
Open Office Will read MS Office 2007 *.docx *.xlsx etc files, so Open Office is better than Office 2003 for compatibility with erm Microsofts own product :lol:

Oh and MS Office 2007's defaults "add the x" without asking so people E-Mail them off and wonder why people cant open them! :lol:

So If I work on a PC with MSO2007 I change (after explaing the customer :) the defaults to *.doc


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Fri Oct 23, 2009 4:48 am 
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Joined: Sat Jan 26, 2008 4:25 am
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Quote:
Being that OO reads and writes .doc files just fine, I'm guessing he never even gave it a shot. OO does incredibly well with most documents, and is virtually indistinguishable from Office in most regards. In fact I'd go so far to say that currently it is more like Office than Office, the latter referring to the non-standard 2007 version.


I think he had a problem with how it formated some stuff, such as paragraphs. I think I'll download OO and give it a try. I haven't used it in ages and, being open source, these things are constantly improving


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 Post subject: Re: Should I Upgrade from Vista Ultimate to Windows 7 Ultimate?
 Post Posted: Fri Oct 23, 2009 9:19 am 
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Location: Stowmarket, Suffolk England
OO Will always give it a shot but for 100% compatibility with any program you need the same program at the other end.

Don't forget that different versions of each MS Office "year" also exist. Some MSO installs are patched but most are not! I always switch on Microsoft Update (an addition to windows Update in order to get MSO Patches (and service packs)

Even on a PC with MS0 2003 or 2007 I always install OO as a "backup" if MSO fails


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