VISTA & Windows 7
Microsoft’s latest operating system is called Windows 7 and has some new features.
The majority of new notebooks (laptops) now come pre-installed with Windows 7, or a version of Vista, which may currently allow a free upgrade to Windows 7.
Computers & Data builds new desktops and towers with Vista Business, or Windows 7 installed, unless the client prefers to stay with Windows XP Professional.
With existing computers, the most common question we are asked is: Should I change or upgrade?
When Windows XP was released, a lot of applications that ran successfully under Windows 2000 and 98, had few problems running on the newer operating system.
However, Vista is not just an upgraded version of Windows XP.
The story is very different with Vista. There are many application which install or run happily under Windows XP, that either don't install properly or don't work completely under Windows Vista. This means that most third-party software companies need to spend time working through the product and advising their clients whether their existing software is Vista-compatible.
Although the latest service packs have improved compatibility issues, users should not install Windows 7 or Vista with an immediate expectation that the software will run perfectly.
You should also be aware that there are diferent versions:
- Two versions “designed” for home use – Home Basic and Home Premium
- Two versions “business-oriented” – Business and Ultimate
Business is the minimum version that you should consider in a work environment.
There is another important aspect to consider before installing or upgrading with Windows Vista and to a lesser degree Windows 7. Older computer hardware is not adequate for the successful use of Windows 7 or Vista.
In short, if the target computer doesn't have a dual core processor and at least 1GB RAM (2GB RAM is even better), it is a waste of time installing Windows 7 or Vista even if all the third-party software is compatible.
So, it is very important to check your hardware before deciding whether or not to install Vista.
To go back to Windows XP, you cannot simply install Windows XP over the top of your new system. Instead, you will need to reformat your computer, and go through the painful process of re-installing all of your software after backing up all of your current files.
In summary, make sure that your existing programs and equipment are compatible, or at least capable of being updated to run with Windows 7 or Vista using the latest drivers.
Any updates to this advice will go up on our website so please keep checking it for the latest information.