Has ANYBODY had a GOOD experience with Vista? Not me! I can't believe Dell stopped shipping XP when I ordered a new laptop for my wife for Christmas. Geez.
I saw an Old Version of XP on Amazon.com today for $49.
Legitimate versions of XP are getting pricey and they are disappearing fast. If you really want XP you should buy it soon. This one says it's the Old Version. That means you'll have to download XP SP1, SP2 and SP3 as well has a hundred patches after you install it. If you want a newer version that includes SP3, it will cost over 3 times as much. Ouch!
You might also consider switching to Linux. Linux is FREE Open Source. Dell recommends Ubuntu Linux 8.04 LTS. You can download the ISO file for free here, burn it to a CD, then boot from the CD to install it:
The only problem with Linux is that you can't run Microsoft Office. If you don't like Linux, you can always reinstall Vista. Another option would be to install Windows 7 Release Candidate 1. It's a 1 year trial of Microsoft's latest OS Windows 7. It fixes some of Vista's bugs. I tried it and YES, it is better than Vista. Download it here for free:
I have had nothing but good experiences with X64 vista. I would not go back to XP if you paid me. Sure if you have older equipment or proprietary software then you might have issues, but most of the bad about Vista is highly blown out of proportion.
Vista 64 is far more stable and robust then XP every though of being. Sure you have to learn the OS a bit but it is not as bad as it is made out to be.
And Win 7 which is Vista on steroids will be the final death nail in the XP coffin.
I'm happy that VISTA 64 is working for you - for me on my Studio 1535 - I have slow, intermittant internet connections on wireless and direct connect to cable broadband, simple games like Spider Solitaire continually blue screen, and too much of the open source code available on the internet doesn't work with VISTA 64 - not too mention the limited hardware certified by Microsoft.
I've spent five months fighting VISTA 64 and then downgrading to XP. I don't know if it's DELL or Microsoft - I don't care. I don't care if the support for hardware goes away, I don't care if the support for software goes away, I just want my sister-in-law's Christmas present to work. XP does, VISTA 64 does not
Thanks for your post. After reading that, I probably won't be buying a 64 bit version of Windows 7. The only real advantage I see with a 64 bit OS is to address more than 3gb of RAM. For me, 2gb of RAM is plenty, even for virtualization. Having 2 identical dual channel 1gb memory modules is plenty for home use. It even works great with VMWare and 1 or 2 virtual clients. Heck, Ubuntu Linux runs great with only 1gb of memory and no swap file.