Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    1,993
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/Ult)

    A relative to me has a new laptop with Windows XP Home preinstalled. New in this case means, ah, 1 month. This is their main PC at home, though they have another really old laptop with XP.

    After all the joy with a really speedy etc. (for him) PC, he has now, less than a month later, started to look at Vista. I have no first hand experience on Vista, though I have read *a lot* during the years (newsletters, Paul Thurrott, Ed Bott, Mary Jo Foley, our Woody et al), so I have given him a little information earlier like: "maybe should whait and see", mentioning some problems about upgrades in general as to clean install, etc. "On the other hand some have had great success in upgrading", and then trying to mention what could be important. He has also searched a little for info. Still, this is new. Remember when XP came, but then the step from 2000 to XP wasn't so big; for ex. install process is different now etc.

    This fellow is intermediate (whatever, sometimes low) in OS/computer knowledge. Still he's always looking for the "top of the line" models etc, if he can afford it (most advanced calculator, even if only can use <5 % etc.). So he has heard about Vista Ultimate of course, and IF it's going to be Vista it stands between Home Premium and Ultimate (Business seems also fine to me, so for myself it would be any of the three). He has read about BitLocker, and yes it could be good on a laptop, though I don't think he will move around with the laptop so much. First he thought a Vista OEM-license could be a cheap way to a new OS ... They are into looking at DVD movies and gaming, though not extreme (plus normal Office/Internet use), so guess Prem/Ult. is a good choice.

    So, I think he should wait and read a little more, and also look at what's happening with the SP1 development etc.

    What are your experiences in upgrading to Vista, and on a laptop? I know about this: "do a clean install with an upgrade DVD".

    As I understand it: Vista needs NTFS and if you are doing a strict upgrade from XP on FAT32, you'll need to convert the volume before. Any comments on this?

    Among all I've read, found this, though early after release February 26: Ed Bott A tale of three PC companies and their upgrade plans with comments about Acer. And at Acer I don't find the 4005 mentioned in info. about Acer Upgrade Wizard.

    The Laptop: Acer Ferrari 4005 WLMi
    AMD Turion 64 ML-37 (2 GHz).
    1024 MB RAM DDR-333, (the typical "cheap" 2x512, irritating to upgrade, and this laptop can't use channels anyhow).
    ATI Radeon Xpress 200P chipset, Mobility Radeon X700 GPU and 128MB.
    120 GB HDD, partitioned in Acer fashion: C: ~53 GB, D: [Acerdata] ~53 GB, and a smaller PQSERVICE partition ~5 GB for some kind of recovery. All in FAT32. I've read that XP can't even create that big FAT32 volumes at install (setup), so guess Acer have some special tools (

  2. #2
    Gold Lounger Rebel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    3,024
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/Ult)

    Hi Argus,

    An "upgrade" for your relative is a moot point. You are correct that Vista cannot be installed to a FAT32 partition and conversion is required (see this KB article ), so a clean install is the only option.

    Hardware issues:
    While Vista will certainly run with 1024 MB RAM, the experience will probably be unsatisfactory. The consensus (from Vista users) seems to be that 2GB RAM is the minimum required. I have 2GB on both my Vista notebook and my Vista desktop.
    The Mobility Radeon X700 is rated for "moderate" gaming (at least from what I have read). In my case, my notebook has a 256 MB card and the desktop has a 768 MB card. With only 128 MB on board, the Radeon is probably going to "borrow" from system memory, and this will reduce the 1GB system memory even further.

    The fact that the 4005 is not listed as compatible with Acer's Upgrade Wizard does not necessarily mean that Vista will not run on the machine. However, if your relative is determined to try Vista, he must ensure that Acer (or somebody) can supply all or most of the drivers required (including the mobile chipset drivers, video adapter, modem, etc. etc.). While Vista does have many built in generic drivers, mobile chipset and video drivers are most times configured specifically for a particular hardware platform.

    Personal experience:
    My notebook had XP SP2 preinstalled (NTFS), and was certainly an "upgrade" candidate. A clean install of any new operating system is obviously the best choice, and after visiting the Dell forums and determining that 99.999% of all horror stories posted there emanated from users "upgrading", the decision to perform a clean install was a no-brainer. As I mentioned before, I did ensure that every driver I needed was available on the Dell site. I downloaded them, burned them to CD and then took the plunge. The clean install of Vista Ultimate (Thurrott method) completed flawlessly and the driver installations completed the process. There were obviously a few applications that had to be updated (which I did) and to date I am very impressed with Vista.

    Following this experience, I ordered a new desktop with Vista Ultimate preinstalled. Again, I'm completely happy with this system. I would certainly recommend (as stated previously) that your relative upgrade to 2GB RAM before even considering Vista. Hope this helps.
    John
    A Child's Mind, Once Stretched by Imagination...
    Never Regains Its Original Dimensions

  3. #3
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    1,993
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/

    Hello John,
    Thanks for your comments! As to RAM, I agree with you. I think it maybe could be running fine on 1024 MB, if they don't try to run advanced games combined with Aero etc. but as I said no extreme gamers. And yes Vista eats memory, maybe better than no other OS. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15> When released the laptop got good reviews and X700 seemed to have no problem running games like DOOM3 (albeit not at highest level, maybe. And: with winXP).

    I mentioned this 2x512 MB situation; if it was one 1024 MB and one empty slot it would be cheaper & easier to get 2 GB. Of course it's possible to have 1.5 GB.

    <img src=/S/whisper.gif border=0 alt=whisper width=29 height=17> I have this "borrowing" technology on my desktop; a Nvidia 128 MB with TurboCache, showing up as 256 MB, and if I put 1024 MB RAM or more into system it will show as 512 MB video RAM. Tried to read a little over at Nvidia, but don't get it how they do it, since no ordinary tool track it. It isn't like graphics on the mobo, as they thought in one of the computer shops I visited, that I already knew.

    Yes, it seems like the ATI X700 has some Hypermemory thing for RAM and graphics.

    The Acer's Upgrade Wizard was just a reflection, I think this laptop is capable of running Vista, no problem there, but Acer had a dead link in their FAQ about laptop's not mentioned in their Wizard's list.

    In general I think that an upgrade is more prone to problems than a clean install, no matter what kind of PC. Next level: laptop, then it can be even a little more tricky. But, of course, there are also many examples of the opposite, success. It could be luck, but more important, as always, good preparation before the new OS is essential as you mentioned. There has been some discussions on the net; most seems to agree that a clean install is the way, although with this new laptop there isn't so much old programs, so if an upgrade indeed had worked, old programs wouldn't be a major problem. I probably will have a look at their new laptop in a week. Not so much for this eventual Vista, but to have a look at the Ferrari and his 16 icons in the tray. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    Any further comments from anyone are welcome.

  4. #4
    Gold Lounger Rebel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    3,024
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/

    "I think this laptop is capable of running Vista."

    Yes I think it is as well, but as I mentioned at the beginning of my post, because of the FAT32 file system, an "upgrade" installation of Vista is not an option. <img src=/S/nope.gif border=0 alt=nope width=15 height=15>
    John
    A Child's Mind, Once Stretched by Imagination...
    Never Regains Its Original Dimensions

  5. #5
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    1,993
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/

    As mentioned at Ed Bott's page; in the Acer case, they have for Vista, 11 drivers or program updates plus a new BIOS, to download and install individually.

    This download page shows them for the 4005. They do talk about an upgrade, but since all(?) Acer's have FAT32 that will not work. OK, it's an "upgrade" since it's a new OS. It seems like they also are selling an Acer upgrade DVD, containing a wizard guide.

    How about BIOS upgrade (I have done it on my older PCs, and also helped some others), has anyone heard anything about the need for BIOS upgrades related to Vista? Or, maybe it's as simple as if they do offer a new "Vista BIOS", then you probably should get it.

    On my PC, there is some setting in the BIOS Power menu for ACPI support, that ought to be set to ACPI 2.0 if Vista installation.

  6. #6
    Silver Lounger
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Posts
    1,993
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/

    Hi again John,
    Of course he couldn't wait, earlier to day I got a phone call; "What's the difference between FAT32 and NTFS?" <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

    As it seems, he has bought an upgrade version of Vista Home Premium. And has done a little preparation, downloading Vista updates at Acer before jumping into the OS upgrade. Good.

    But of course the Vista installer stopped at the FAT32 file system. Now a little interesting part, the Swedish error message says (if I translate the last part): "open Command Prompt and then run: c: /fs:ntfs"

    Of course that doesn't work. So he called MS support and eventually they sorted that out. When he called me the install probably was in some progress.

    But the OS AND the Swedish KB article shows the wrong error message, but the solution mentioned in the KB is correct: convert C:/FS:NTFS

    Compare error message mentioned at the top under "SYMPTOMS":
    Swedish http://support.microsoft.com/kb/926069/swe-se
    English http://support.microsoft.com/kb/926069/en-us

    Apparently he has bought a new AV/firewall suite, nothing wrong, the Acer came with Norton, but non of us like it very much. Now he is thinking of installing Norton after Vista, to be secure when downloading updates. Then remove it and install the new AV/firewall.

    Well, if it had been me, I would not bother installing Norton after Vista just for a short time. But then I don't know how this laptop/preinstalled software thing works in an upgrade process. If he upgrades the OS, the old software would be left somehow. And I wouldn't like to have cluster size 512, as I think convert will result in. Also he's looking for a 2 GB RAM upgrade, maybe a good choice, but expensive, since he will have two 512 MB left.

    I'll have a look at the laptop at the weekend.

  7. #7
    Administrator
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    23,593
    Thanks
    5
    Thanked 1,059 Times in 928 Posts

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/

    Any low level software such as A/v and firewall should be uninstalled before the update process is started. He better be sure he has a version of Norton that is Vista compatible or he'll be just asking for trouble. The new Windows firewall will be just fine until he installs what he wants.

    Joe
    Joe

  8. #8
    Gold Lounger Rebel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2001
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    3,024
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post

    Re: Upgrade from XP to Vista on a new laptop (Pre/

    Hi Argus,
    If the machine is only a month old, is there any way you can convince him to do a CLEAN install? As you are probably aware, this can be done with an "upgrade" version. The "convert, install Vista, install Norton, uninstall Norton, install another AV suite" seems to be just begging for problems. BTW, I am perfectly happy with NIS2007 <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>
    John
    A Child's Mind, Once Stretched by Imagination...
    Never Regains Its Original Dimensions

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •