Easy Upgrade, difficult compatibility with existing drivers
May 2, 2003
a Helpful Review
by the Epinions community
Pros:More stable, usable desktop, intuitive menus
Cons:Looks too much like MSN Explorer which I deleted from my PC
The Bottom Line: Looking for stability, this has it, but watch out for driver support before you upgrade.
I had some operating system problems on my 1998 vintage PC, but while the hardware has been kept up to date, I let WIN 98 stay there because I didn't think OS upgrade was that important. Now that family gremlins have installed so many games and peripherals on my PC, many conflicts existed so I felt the need to either reinstall WIN98, or upgrade. I went XP upgrade.
Recommend this product?
Before you start, run the system diagnostics from XP. You'll hit many of the glitches that may pop up during installation and/or after installation. Print it out and keep it handy so you can easily refer back to it. I did as it said and downloaded some of the drivers before I upgraded and most are OK now. I forgot one and I'm having difficulty getting my digital camera card reader back on the system because of this.
The upgrade takes about the hour the program estimated for me. Be prepared to log onto and stay on line during the installation process - it will save you some time. And shut down any startup programs running in the background to avoid conflicts.
I'm not a software or PC guru, but found that most people can perform this upgrade without difficulty. You have to have some OS knowledge, but don't have to be an expert.
Once the XP upgrade was up and running, I found the menus were more vibrant and easy to read/understand. Pretty common logic with Windows users. I had a little difficulty getting some programs to run enabled when I turned family members administrative rights off. I had to give them full admin rights to get some programs running. But the upgrade saved most of my previous settings from WIN98 and I was able to reset all the desktop and display to user preferences.
Upgrade to XP drivers for my resident software has been a nightmare, and I don't know yet if this is XP's problem, or the software vendor's problem. But USB ports sometimes work and sometimes don't, depending upon which software is running. For example, my printer works great, my Palm hotsync is great, but the digital camera and the smart media card reader don't run with new drivers I downloaded.
If you like the look of MSN Explorer (is this correct terminology?) then you'll like the look of XP. I dropped MSN because of the Explorer and the amount of desktop space those large icons ate up on my monitor. Unless you change settings in XP you'll run into similar problems there, with the exception you can size the desktop icons to your liking.
But first glance, after a week of use, XP appears to be very stable, no "Blue Screen of Death" yet, and the load time on boot up is fast as is shut down.
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