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Dump Microsoft--the company is deeply dishonest, the products are crap and there are better alternatives.
I'll NEVER go back to that messy, unreliable nightmare.

Shane Ponting

Windows XP x64 is the best windows I've used to date and that includes Vista. I think I'll end up skipping Vista for my desktop and jumping to Windows 7 or whatever they call it when it sells...

Ian you should have called me, I don't have a switchboard so you get through straight away :)


I've stayed away from Vista, mainly because my old machine was too slow to take it, but also because it looks like it's all flash and no substance. I think Vista is like the 'Windows ME' of the Microsoft oeuvre and I'll try and wait until the next incarnation.


If you want something reliable use PCLInuxOS 2007. It is easy and to use, free including all the software you are likely to need. If windows, too, is really needed. The Sun Virtual Box add on (free) is a delight. For typical use it has everything. No driver problems : winXP won't work my 1680x1050 monitor but PCLinuxOS does.

Linux comes in many flavours, somw of them nerdware or hobbyist grade (that includes Ubuntu). However PCLInuxOS is stable and any windows user would have little changeover bother. If you weren't familiar with windows you wouldn't know it wasn't. Install time 15 mins and it can do dual boot if needed. I have test driven many versions but this is by far the best, versatile, reliable and user-friendly version to date.


Upshot was that removal of battery, after about nine failed reboot attempts (failed in the sense it kicked straight to Vista), debugged the machine and for the last four boot-ups it has given me dual option.

Microsoft responded to my initial email after 24 hours, as promised, but an NZ Microsoft staffer kindly phoned me this arvo to check whether I needed further help.

All seems to be OK for now. My main reason for buying the Tecra was that Microsoft updates had made my previous machine, an ASUS M6000, practically unworkable.

I had foolishly allowed the machine to auto-update, and unfortunately about a year ago one of those updates made the computer unstable.

System restore only offered a temporary cure, so I stripped it back to the recovery O/S and reloaded everything.

The ASUS worked at the speed of light for a while, until about three weeks later the machine demanded a series of Microsoft updates (the original recovery O/S being two years old)

130 or so updates later, the machine was slowingly considerably and its old fault was back.

So I figured that by purchasing a new Tecra and loading SP3, the bugs might have been ironed out.

I do try and avoid at all costs running Microsoft's updates, purely on the basis that one patch does not necessarily fix all and that the efforts to correct the perceived security loophole might have been at the cost of system stability.

Contrary to media reviews, I have had no problems with Vista per se, except for compatibility with older software that I have no intention of upgrading at present because it works fine in XP Pro.


Kev OB says:

"Linux comes in many flavours, somw of them nerdware or hobbyist grade (that includes Ubuntu)"

Kev this makes Linux just the operating system for you.

Vista is great, go and get it on your new $800 laptop.

What is the Vatican using Kev?


1. Not being a catholic I have no idea what the Vatican is doing.
2. I have no laptop among our household's 4 computers.
3. Having had a computer shop for 10 years and built and sold about 2500 computers I appreciate practical, reliable, non-resource intensive software. That's what I'm using. Typically, from experience, Vista won't be fit for use for another 12 months.
4. I would never let a program do automatic updates. If it works don't fix it; in MS's case, be very wary of installing any software all. I am well aware of Ian's problem of machines slowing down; that has been going on for at least 10 years. The only fix has been a complete re-installation of the operating system and applications. A new machine is not always a fix either; the constant changes to the hardware designs means that working software may not run as expected on an "upgraded" computer.Unfortunately some combinations of software with software or with hardware are going to problematical and it is best to treat a working system like a hardwired machine and not upgrade. Be prepared if you install a new version of any software or another program on a working system that you may crash your computer irrecoveralbly. I have an accounting workstation, still running Win2K, that does not go on any network for security reasons; I can't afford to lose client work and have watched previously my windows machine being taken out remotely.
5. PCLinuxOS 2007 is simple and useful enough for our 6 yr old upwards to use. It is by far the most reliable system I have used and the distribution with a large software library fits on one downloadable disk. It has all that most people are likely to need. There is MS compatible office software including Powerpoint so there is no concern about document interchange. DVD's run out of box. Even my accounting program, which is a recent version native to windows, runs smoothly and quickly on it with an addon.
6. The best linux desktop software has now passed nerdware stage and should be widely used. Several countries have now officially adopted it for all public administration. Our schools should seriously consider it, particularly as it runs well on many older computers which may be available free. It wasn't always as friendly and two years ago I wouldn't have recommended it. Now I seriously promote it as an antidote to the bloated, wallet-emptying, unreliable MS.
7. This document comes to you courtesy of PCLInuxOS 2007 running the free, included,Firefox browser.


I have a Toshiba Satellite A100 running Vista Home Premium, it's almost 2 years old but the Vista patches have actually helped.. I'd blame the "Vista-capable" hardware vendors more than Microsoft.

One big problem Vista had with a lot of earlier laptops was the video drivers.. NVidia took freaking ages to upgrade their drivers and eliminate the endless crashes and flickers. Now it's going fine, for a budget-spec machine.

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