Last year when Vista was release to the masses I had already been using the Vista RTM version for a few months. I even wrote a little review about my experience. In short, the new OS was visually appealing but had too many things wrong with it such as bugs, incompatible software and not enough drivers were available. I ended up uninstalling Vista and reinstalled Windows XP and have not used it since except for when I’m troubleshooting a Vista system at work.
It’s been a little over a year, about 14 months, since Vista’s release. I got my hands on a copy of a Vista RTM with SP1. SP1 was the answer to all the nay-sayers who didn’t want to use Vista. Many online publications have already done benchmarking tests and SP1 was no faster than the orginal RTM release. In fact some showed SP1 as being slightly slower. I wanted to see the results for myself so I set up Vista w/SP1 on a couple of virtual systems on VMware. Using Vista on VMware probably didn’t provide much of a guage to show the difference with the new SP1, So I decided to install Vista Ultimate 64 bit version on my primary desktop system. Before formatting and reinstalling a new OS I always backup all my files and I download all the drivers needed for the new OS. I was a bit worried because I’ve never installed or used a 64 bit OS. I expected many things to go wrong with the installation.
I booted off the Vista RTM /w SP1 DVD and installed it. Everything went as normal as the regular Vista sans SP1. It took about 25-30 minutes for the entire install. I finish the installation and logged on to Vista with my username and password. The first thing I always check after I install a fresh copy of Windows is check the Device Manager. One of the most daunting task for installing Windows is finding yellow exclaimations and unknown devices listed in the Device Manager. That’s where downloading the needed drivers before the OS change can save you time and headaches. In this case after the installation there was only one yellow exclamation in the device manager and it was for my USB XBOX HD DVD drive. Running the Windows update fixed it and my Device Manager window was all clean. I was amazed it had drivers for my motherboard devices as well as my dual Hauppauge tuners.
The year between my first Vista install til now there has been a ton of hotfixes and driver updates. This Vista installation couldn’t be any easier. My next test will be evaluating my 32-bit applications and see how it run on this 64 bit Vista.
[To be continued…]