Windows 7 or 8 for a netbook? Help please

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  • Windows 7 or 8 for a netbook? Help please
  • Premier Icon Rusty Mac
    Subscriber

    Hi, we currently have 2 netbooks and an old laptop that will require updating with XP not being supported in the future, can any of you advise which of the newer operating systems will be most compatable with them.

    From memory the netbooks are 1.6 GHz intel atom processors and the older laptop is a 1.6GHz pentium celeron m (though i would guess it is not functioning on all 1.6 of them).

    Windows 8 is currently about £45 a licence where 7 is closer to £75, is the cheaper one just going to bog the older computers down a lot?

    What say the mighty IT gurus of STW? which one is my best bet?

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    Apparently win 8 works better on limited hardware than 7. I havent tried it though…

    And the definition of limited hardware is debateable…. I think win 8 has a min memory req of 2gb for instance.

    Premier Icon MSP
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    Windows 8 is crap it just doesn’t work properly. I would go for 7.

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    c p I read similar on the PCWorld web site but did not know how accurate it was. Or if it was jut markating bumf.

    Less energy, more power

    Windows 8 Pro is designed to deliver a great experience across a range of different devices, from ultra-fast desktops to low-power tablets. It can run on low-power CPUs so you can work for much longer on a single charge

    Minimum system requirements
    Processor: 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster
    RAM: 1 gigabyte (GB) (32-bit) or 2 GB (64-bit)
    Hard disk space: 16 GB (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
    Graphics card: Microsoft DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM driver

    I guess i’ll be ok if i Stick to 32-bit version. But have no idea about the grapics qualities of the devices.

    grantway
    Member

    Sounds like an PC scrap heap challenge

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    Windows 8 is crap it just doesn’t work properly

    Like Vista?

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    grant – laptop maybe but the netbooks work fine for what we use them for, – surfing the internet, typing the odd email, chatting to friends and family in foreign countries over Skype etc not much of a gamer so never needed anything very powerful.

    Premier Icon molgrips
    Subscriber

    Windows 8 is crap it just doesn’t work properly

    Ignore this.

    And Win 8 does work well with limited hardware. I ran it on a 1GHz Atom 520 and it was significantly quicker than 7.

    Skype isnt’ exactly light on resources mind.

    Premier Icon andytherocketeer
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    I guess i’ll be ok if i Stick to 32-bit version.

    Which Atom? might only be 32-bit anyway (mine is).
    No clue if Win7 or Win8 ship as 32 or 64 bit separately, or if they bundle both or if they are clever.

    edit: I lie – one of my atom machines is definitely 32bit, the other is 64bit dualcore+HT.

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    I do not expect the netbooks to be 64 bit pretty sure they are only 32 bit as you suggest. I was more meaning the rest of the system requirements will be more easily achievable if I stick to 32bit.

    I may have to upgrade the RAM in the better half’s netbook as I think she may only have 512Mb at the moment.

    Moses
    Member

    Why bother upgrading?
    Will the lack of support from microsoft actually impinge on your work?
    Netbooks are only worth about £100 2nd hand, so is the upgrade cost worth it?

    Premier Icon MSP
    Subscriber

    Like Vista?

    No vista was buggy, the problems with 8 is its basic functionality, the two interfaces aren’t properly integrated, it like using virtual machines, they just haven’t got it right on a functional level.

    It may be sorted out at sp1, the microsoft president in charge of 8’s development was sacked days after its release when the full failure was realised, and they are desperately trying to sort the mess out. But whether it can be sorted with a service pack or whether it will take another windows release waits to be seen.

    Premier Icon midlifecrashes
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    Unless there’s a particular deal breaking piece of software you have to use for work, or whatever, I’d say leave well alone.

    —————————————————————-
    Sent from my Win XP Home SP3 Laptop

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    Why bother upgrading?

    I figured there could be more of a security risk if it s not being updated etc – correct me if I am wrong?

    We do use them for internet banking and online shopping etc so don’t want to leave ourselves vulnerable.

    Premier Icon leffeboy
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    Why bother upgrading?

    Best advice so far. On a netbook I just don’t think it is worth it.

    If you are going to do it then Win 8 is much better than 7 imho. I use machines with vista/7 & 8 regularly and I much prefer being on 8 now. It does take some learning though but it’s worth it.

    If you are going down that route then I think it is only 25 gbp up until the end of january? take a look here to see if your machine will run it http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows-8/upgrade-to-windows-8

    Premier Icon andytherocketeer
    Subscriber

    Still on Win2000 here, on mine, even if it is in a VM. Very simple to wipe and install a clean image if need be. Performance is actually not that bad tbh although I dare say XP/7/8 may be faster.

    So what if it’s not supported? It doesn’t stop working on that date. Personally I might give the system a clean up or reinstall, but even on a desktop I wouldn’t upgrade unless there really were features missing, or if it was necessary to run newer software.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    OS aside, I’d take both netbooks to 2GB, that’s a better spend. I do it as a matter of course on netbooks (they’re all 1GB or under due to Microsoft offering cheaper licences for machines that meet their “netbook” spec). Makes a hell of a difference.

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    Cougar, I did that on the laptop 512MB to 2GB (crucial said this was the max for the laptop) and it seems to have made no difference hence the comment in the first post.
    The netbooks seem fine for what we do if not updating them is not going to give us grief then I’m happy enough to use them till they die and then get new at that point just sisn’t want to unwhittingly leave us open to scrotes looking for my bank details etc.

    Premier Icon Rio
    Subscriber

    I’d thought about this given win8’s low memory usage etc, but it turns out it doesn’t like lower resolution screens such as are usually found on netbooks. There are some registry hacks to get round this but in the end I didn’t bother.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    If going from 512Mb to 2Gb made “no difference” I’d suspect there’s something going on. Mind you, it’s a Pantium so it’s never going to be lightning fast. A rebuild might help, but if it’s always been slow then YMMV.

    XP is currently in what MS call “Extended Support”, which is due to run out some time in 2014 (I forget when exactly). When that phase runs out XP won’t suddenly stop working, it just means no more security patches etc will be released. Whether you should upgrade is a fairly complex question. Or rather, it’s a simple question with a complex answer. (-: It’s worth considering though, support aside, when the curtain does fall XP will be a twelve year old operating system.

    I don’t know if it’s still available, but Windows 7 used have a “family pack” bundle which gave you three licences (for three machines) at a fairly hefty price reduction. Might be worth a google.

    Windows 8 I’ve not used in anger, but I’m not impressed with what I’ve seen so far. I’ll leave it for others to comment.

    Either should be a worthy upgrade from XP, assuming your machines support it. There’s an Upgrade Advisor tool on MS’s site, I’d grab that and run it before spending any money.

    Premier Icon cp
    Subscriber

    the netbooks work fine for what we use them for, – surfing the internet, typing the odd email, chatting to friends and family in foreign countries over Skype etc not much of a gamer so never needed anything very powerful

    Have you thought about Linux? Ubuntu is pretty slick these days. For a light install on a netbook, use Lubuntu.

    EDIT – assuming you don’t have an external CD drive, install using a USB stick

    https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Lubuntu/GetLubuntu

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    It really didn’t do anything, think you at right on the rebuild however the laptop comes with restore disks from pre service pac 2 and they have a heap of Sony Oem software that it crap. There is no easy way to do a clean install of XP then the current software in use on the computer.

    Will look into the upgrade advisor for the net books.

    Premier Icon molgrips
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    I’m trying to decide if I want to download 8 for £25 or whatever it is for my home PC

    Rusty, it’s fairly straightforward to remove the Sony software crap.

    Premier Icon Rusty Mac
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    Molly from the back up disks?

    I’m thinking half the problem is after the last rebuild I installed everything on the back up disks then uninstalled the crap through add/remove program’s then put on what I wanted. But I guess this is not much different to how it would have been before the re-build.

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    TBH, it shouldn’t really matter.

    Installing from the recovery (and Windows Updating to death) will give you a clean install plus whatever foisterware is on the bundle. You should be able to readily uninstall this. Sure, it won’t be as ‘virgin’ as an absolutely clean install, but for all practical purposes it should be as close as makes no odds.

    What kills Windows performance over time isn’t some sort of natural decay, it’s all the memory-resident crap that gets installed along the way. “Would you like an anti-virus trial with your media player?” Do me a quaver. Cleaning up after a Recovery Disc install is usually fairly straight forward; after fourteen search toolbars, three smiley stationery packs and a friendly neighbourhood rootkit have all found their way on there it’s a different story.

    An actual clean install from an actual Windows disc will be, er, actually clean. But then you’ve got the fun of playing ‘guess the driver’ to get all your hardware supported and working. This can be straight forward, or can be a right pain in the whosits. Old laptops can be… idiosyncratic.

    There’s pros and cons to both methods.

Viewing 25 posts - 1 through 25 (of 25 total)

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