Buying a new computer – Revisited

As a follow-up to my post titled “Buying a New Computer“, I wanted to let every know {start sarcasm} what a great experience using Vista is {end sarcasm}.

As you may or may not know. I bought a new Dell Dimension E521 with Windows Vista Home Premium. I unpacked the box, connected the peripherals and turned the machine on and……..to keep a long story short, I bought a new monitor (the old one was ugly with Vista) and a new graphics card (Radeon 1300 w/ 512MB RAM) to get the most out of Vista.

This machine is primarily used by my wife and needs to work without any intervention by me. Needless to say…it didn’t ‘just work’. My wife is fairly computer savvy and can work around most issues, but Vista caused so many problems that she has given up hope for this machine.

I’ve had the machine for about a month now and it seems like every day some new error message pops up or something stops/starts working again. A few examples:

  • Our printer (an HP Photosmart C5180 connected to our network) has had to be reinstalled 4 times…for some reason Vista (or the printer) loses touch with each other (even though both are using Static IP’s).
  • iTunes won’t import 1/2 the music in the music library. It’s funny that in WinXP, iTunes loved these songs, but in Vista it hates them.
  • If I want to install software, I can use the software that I ‘ve already purchased…oh wait…no actually…sometimes I can’t. I have to buy another version!!??
  • McAfee firewall (installed as a trial by Dell) caused such a lag in network response as to make the system unusable. With McAfee firewall turned on, it took 30 seconds to Firefox and/or IE to load up and show a web page. Without McAfee it was virtually instantaneous.

Well…after the month of frustration, I have decided to start from scratch and install XP on this box (it seems I’m not the only one…check out Chris Pirillo’s ‘Windows Vista: I’m Breaking up with You‘ post). This morning I backed up the data, formatted the hard drive and installed Windows XP. Vista is no more….and the experience has left me much less happy with both Dell (because I couldn’t order the machine with XP) and Microsoft (will I ever buy another Microsoft product?).

I can’t imagine what someone without any real computer knowledge must think of Vista. If they had the problems that I did, I’m sure that they are very very unhappy.

[tags] Microsoft Vista, Buying a new Computer[/tags]

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Eric BrownGarry L. Booker Recent comment authors
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Garry L. Booker
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Eric, I agree 110%. When you walk into a computer store, almost all new machines have Vista installed. The sales people will probably tell you that you don’t want to buy one with Windows XP because Vista is so wonderful. In reality, you don’t want to buy one with Vista — at least not today. I have wasted many hours trying to solve Vista problems, and some of my peripherals are worthless (due to driver incompatibilities). I can’t think of a single feature of Vista that is worth all the trouble. Sure it has nice eye candy, but how does… Read more »

Eric Brown
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I agree Garry. For the month that we had Vista running, half the time was spent trying to figure out how to make it work.

I’m sure Vista will be a great product after all the third-party drivers are written for it…but people can’t wait a year or more for a new OS to be useful.