Windows Vista Tips

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jethro's picture

There has been a lot of negative press about Windows Vista, mostly undeserved, though some of the initial problems with Vista like file copy speed were a problem. However in general the Vista Operating System is a vast improvement of Windows XP in a number of key areas; Security and patching , system stability, application and driver support, plug and play and networking, user interface, and features.

vista logo One of the most common things I hear about Vista is that it doesn’t work as well or is not as good as Windows XP. In every case so far I have been able to educate the people saying this and show them just why it is better than XP in these key areas. In every case with a little hands on user training and demonstration of the killer features (like search and virtual folders), the security and system stability, wins these people over. Slowly I am converting all my clients and friends to Vista.

I can absolutely state that most of my support calls from clients originate with Windows XP machines. Almost without exception my Vista clients do not call for operating system or application issues. As a business supporting hardware installations, I much prefer selling Vista to XP, as I know there will be less issues. I now refuse to install XP on a clients machine and recommend a hardware upgrade to support Vista.

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And that is another main reason why people don’t like Vista initially. In my opinion Vista should not be installed on any computer with less than 2GB RAM and preferably with a dual core or Core 2 duo CPU. A big fast hard drive is also recommended and I would not install less than a 512 MB Video card. IF the machine cant get system scores of over 3.5 I would suggest that the computer needs upgrading or shouldn’t be running Vista.

Unfortunately the main problem I see out there in retail PC land is the discount retailers selling old computers at discount prices with Vista on them. I had a client recently who had purchased a machine that was 5 years old technology (but sold brand new) and that he ended up paying twice as much for to get it to run properly. We had to upgrade the CPU, RAM, Video card and the OS and the hard drive had failed only 3 months after purchase. It was sold with a integrated mainboard video, 512 MB RAM, 160 GB Hard drive, an old P4 Celeron 1.Ghz chip and Vista Home Basic. I upgraded to a core2 duo, 2gb RAM, a 250GB Drive, 512MB video card and Vista Home Premium and the client is now happy with Vista. Previously he had been blaming Vista for his poor computing experience, Instead he should have been blaming the retailer who sold this system with no training and advised him that it was suitable for his business.

With that all said, I have here a bunch of links for Vista hints and tips. Get the most out of this awesome operating system that you can.

A beginner's guide to Windows Speech Recognition

50 ways to customise Windows Vista (part 1) parts 2,3,4 and 5 linked from part 1

Windows Guides: Learn to use Windows. Sub headings include:

  • DVR and entertainment
    • Need a little break? With Windows, you've got tons of options—without a lot of extra expense. Set up an amazing entertainment system, record TV for free, and even take your shows with you. Or pick from the enormous collection of games and play on your PC, phone, or online.
  • Protect what matters
    • You know how important it is to safeguard your PC and—if you've got kids—the little ones who use it. That's why security for your files, your privacy, and your family is woven into Windows. So you can do more, have more fun, and worry less.
  • Keep up with life
    • PCs, phones, and the Internet are all about making life easier, right? So Windows is right there every step of the way, helping you find things, get stuff done, and keep up with the things and people at the center of your life.
  • Edit and share photos
    • A lot of the fun of taking pictures is sharing them. You can use Windows to get photos off your camera, touched up, and to your friends without a lot of extra fuss. It's not just about basic e-mail anymore, either. Send photo e-mails with cool effects, get prints made online, or create your own online photo album.
  • PC Basics:Get more out of Windows
    • Start helping at the beginning, with the essential stuff everyone needs to know.

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