HP Windows Vista Home Premium Paperweight Special

06/28/07 I responded to a call about not being able to get e-mail on a Windows Vista Home Premium PC on dial up. It was using the new Vista version of Outlook Express. I believe it’s called Windows Mail. She was using dial up so it should have taken the Windows Mail program a while to verify the user name and password but as usual with a virus or Trojan it just plain didn’t try to connect to the server and put up an error immediately. I asked the woman how long she had used this computer. She said it was about a week old from Staples. She preferred the HP to Dell because she could return it to Staples and the Dell she would have to send in. She tried to install Norton Antivirus but it didn’t work. I tried to do a System Restore but of course that didn’t work. So I ended up (with her permission) just deleting everything and using the HP Recovery Wizard to restore everything. (note that this uses Linux) On most HP systems with XP it usually takes about 10 – 20 minutes for it to copy the image back to the drive and then another 20 – 30 minutes to reinstall the programs but instead with Windows Vista Home Premium it took over 20 minutes to restore by my watch. It also took about 45 minutes to an hour for Vista to decide to stop restarting and let us in after asking us questions about setting it up and benchmarking our system for DRM. I figured we would be good to go when it finally started back up and I had installed good antivirus software and set up the internet connection and mail. I installed Thunderbird and set up Junk Mail settings. She liked Thunderbird and saw it as more like outlook than Windows Mail. So what did we have after we were done? Well basically we had a Web TV. The amassing thing was all the computer was good for was browsing the internet and e-mail. You can’t watch videos if they are not in a special Microsoft format (I didn’t even expect to play DVDs before I started), you can’t type and print with spell check, you don’t have any office programs except maybe Works. (which doesn’t work) I expected real player to play videos but it required me to sign in and would not let me because it had an error connecting to the server. So now we have a paperweight. I quickly installed OpenOffice.org and taught her how to use it. Then I installed Mplayer and could play those videos. So what was the result? The computer was super slow. When trying to play Dell’s Linux_101 video it played the video slower than the audio even though the video was on a CD. This computer had 1 GB of RAM and a new Pentium. It should have had no problem playing anything. During the initial start up when Vista was benchmarking the system to see how much power the computer had it decided that it would use most of the power for trusted computing and DRM. This is why it was so slow. I stuck my PCLinuxOS 2007 disk in and rebooted. The dial up did not work but everything else did and I could play the movie nice and smooth even in Live Mode and everything was already installed and it only took about 2 – 5 minutes to boot. It had all the programs she needed pre-installed. She is currently thinking about switching but I was there from 8 PM to midnight so I thought bed was a good place for me. If she wants to go to Linux I will install a Linux compatible external Dial Up Modem and she will be set to go. I know Microsoft wants the consumer to pay for an upgrade or extra software after words by pulling features out but this was ridiculous.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8p9IU4zp7mU Here is the reason for all of this.

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