You can't secure what you don't acknowledge.SM

Friday, February 1, 2008

Want a new laptop? You can have mine...

Don't use Windows Vista....don't buy a new computer with it installed, don't upgrade to it in your enterprise, don't install it on your personal system. Stay FAR FAR away from Windows Vista.

Back in December, I forked out way too much $$$ for my dream laptop...The one that had what I needed was HP/Compaq 8510P with all the options. I wanted to go with another brand anyway since I've had lots of problems out of my Dells and IBMs in the past. I elected to have Vista pre-installed since I had heard good things about its usability, and, well, I need to keep up with the times especially with the work I do. BIG mistake.

Long story short, I wasted over 40 hours (that is, half) of my Christmas holiday time off fighting with my new laptop - just trying to get Vista and my apps loaded properly. Nothing seemed to work right *and* I was stuck with the 32-bit limitation of Vista not being able to see the entire 4GB of RAM I paid to have installed. So, thinking that if I just installed the 64-bit version of Vista, I'd get to use all of my RAM and maybe it'd run a little faster. Well, I made the silly mistake of (re-)installing Vista 64-bit (two maybe three times total).

Ever since that time (over a month ago), my brand new and expensive HP/Compaq 8510p has been completely unstable. Firefox crashes all the time, VMWare isn't working right...Internet Explorer is VERY unstable...Heck, Vista won't even boot the first time - most of the time. It just hangs at the ticker screen. To fix it, I have to take my battery out of the laptop (presumably resetting all the hardware) and then power it back on and the OS loads eventually. Oh, and plugging my external hard drive into the Firewire port causes a blue screen of death about 60% of the time. It even locks up constantly for no reason at all...All I can do is sit there and wait.The pains go on and on and on and on.

I even have this nice flickering at the bottom of my screen now where the taskbar jumps out every few seconds...just enough to create an enormous distraction when I'm working.

Since I've had my computer (6 weeks), I've easily lost 35-40 hours of time troubleshooting Windows Vista and Compaq hardware problems.

Maybe Vista Service Pack 1 (that's now delayed even further) will help me..??

I really do think there's something about me and computers...First it started out with all of my security testing tools clogging up Windows XP. So I started doing all of my testing in a VMWare session. That seemed to fix a lot of my problems....until I decided to become one of the idiots who thought Vista would be a good idea. If I could eliminate computer problems from my every day work, I'd be at least twice as productive.

Outside of the bells and whistles that I wanted, I don't even like my new laptop...In fact it hurts use it. Interestingly, HP included some in-your-face info about "safety", "ergonomics", and "proper usage of their product". Well it turns out that typing on my system for more than a few seconds absolutely kills my hands. I go back to my old system and the pain goes away. At the end of every work day, I have very limited fine motor skills - like having trouble reaching for and changing stations on the radio in my car. Wow - they've really come a long way in laptop technology!!

So...I was just kidding about you having my laptop....not only do you NOT want it, I wouldn't do that to you!! Plus, you likely won't have time to come claim it because it's probably to end up out the window soon. Or, back at HP.

Well, now that I got that off my chest, I need to start drumming up a letter to HP's VP of Customer Service to see what they'll do for me before my hands fall off from using their product.

2 comments:

  1. Hey Kevin, Vista issues aside, how are you displaying your laptop? I have mine mounted on an LX arm with a dual monitor and an external keyboard, just short of heaven. : -)

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  2. Just a plain old laptop setup...Something that's worked fine for me in the past. I did get a Microsoft ergo keyboard...Not crazy about that setup either. I guess I'm just too picky. :)

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