By Jeffrey Litvinoff
Wednesday - February 13, 2008

By Jeffrey Litvinoff Personal Touch Computers

Windows Vista is one year old. Has it been a success?

As a computer retailer and repair shop, I get to hear feedback from my customers. Many customers come in after purchasing a Vista computer or laptop and want to remove Vista and load Windows XP. Their problems include software not working, not being able to log on to a business server, or not willing to learn a new operating system. Many programs written for Windows XP do not work correctly or not at all in Vista. Now, Vista has a special compatibility setup to make some programs run in a Windows XP mode, but that doesn’t always work and it does not set up automatically. I feel that Microsoft has done this on purpose to force you to buy the Vista-approved software. They certainly could have made installing XP programs automatic if they chose to. Also, companies such as UPS supply customers with a shipping program called Worldship. Guess what? It doesn’t work on Vista - it even says so on their website (as of February 6, 2008), so you need a XP computer to ship your items.

Now how about logging into a business network?

Business customers often have to log on to a windows server and require a user name and password to enter a network. Many companies have not updated their servers to accept Vista or are not even willing to make changes to a network that already runs great. Until the new Windows Server comes available, it doesn’t make any sense upgrading. Most networks require you to log on with Windows XP Professional.

When Companies running XP Professional need new computers, are they going to have to buy all new computers with Vista and update their servers?

If Microsoft has their way, the answer is a very expensive “Yes.” Microsoft was rumored to have planned to stop selling Windows XP software at the end of 2007. As of today they are still making it available to resellers and Dell Computers. They also planned on ending support, possibly as soon as this year. We, personally, plan to sell Windows XP as long as possible and to support XP for our customers to the best of our ability.

Who has the time or ambition to learn a new operating system?

Sure it looks similar to Windows XP, but it does not behave the same. If you try to make changes to the way it looks or how it runs certain programs and utilities, you will be looking for the Help section or “How to Use Vista” books. Some programs even need permission to run every time you use it.

Why not load Windows XP on to those Vista machines?

Windows XP will install, but driver software for the components (mother-board, video card, sound card, network card, etc) must be written for Windows XP and not for Vista. Without the correct driver software, the chances are that it will not run properly.

Microsoft has what they call “service packs”, which are basically bundled software you download that fixes a variety of problems found since the initial release of the software. Windows XP is on its second service pack and has a third service pack that hasn’t been released to the general public. Therefore, XP is more reliable and stable since its first release in 2001. If you want to use Vista I would recommend that you wait until the first service pack so that Microsoft can work out some of the bugs. Look for service pack 2 to give it a “thumbs up”.

Anyone who plays the newest computer games will have to migrate to Vista as the new games are becoming Vista only. I do, personally, use Windows Vista, but it took some work to get it working to my liking. I basically have to use Vista-based programs… but it still has bugs and some programs do not work 100% correctly. Personal Touch Computers has all the newest technology computers featuring Dell and PTC Custom Built Computers with Windows XP Home or Professional and a full line of Vista. We repair all brands computers and are open 7 days a week. Mahalo for your support .........Jeff.



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