Worth installing Vista on old(ish) laptop?

Discussion in 'Windows Vista General Discussion' started by Bobby, Feb 19, 2007.

  1. Bobby

    Bobby Guest

    I'm currently using Vista on my desktop PC (it's great) and I am considering
    also purchasing it for my laptop.

    The problem is that my laptop is a couple of years old. It's spec is:
    Centrino 1.6MHz, 512Mb RAM, 60Gb HD with no graphics acceleration. It's
    currently running XP without problems.

    So my questions are:

    1. Is my laptop capable of running Vista?
    2. What sort of speed could I expect?
    3. What laptop-specific features does Vista provide?
    4. Would special features of my laptop (such as the touchpad acceleration)

    Thanks in anticipation.

    Bobby, Feb 19, 2007
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  2. I have a Toshiba Tecra S1
    1.6 GHz, 512 MB RAM
    Eventually I plan on installing more memory, but for now 512 MB is fine.

    1. Vista should run fine depending on what you do.
    2. Fair to good, again depending on what you do.
    3/4. Depends on the specific drivers needed and if they are included in
    Vista or available from the manufacturer.
    If you install Vista, plan for none to work but hope for better.
    Of course see if the manufacturer has an Vista support information for your

    Find a forum with users of your specific make and model of laptop to get
    first hand information.
    You could also install Vista on the laptop and see what happens.
    I installed Vista clean and hoped everything would work on this older laptop
    and everything is fine.
    All that is missing is Aero, not really an issue for the laptop.
    Jupiter Jones [MVP], Feb 19, 2007
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  3. I'm currently using Vista on my desktop PC (it's great) and I am
    Yes, but 512 MB of RAM is merely enough for Vista itself plus maybe
    one or two smaller apps. Honestly, I'd strongly suggest at least 1 gig
    of RAM. Since your grafics card apparently (?) uses shared memory, this
    will subtract some RAm, too.
    It will be deadly slow when trying to work with larger apps, say for foto
    editing for instance.
    It makes my fan run more than it used to under XP, which is (ok, was)
    a matured, stable system for me on my laptop. I upgraded to 2 gig's
    of RAM (from 1.5), since I'm running apps that are RAM-hogs (virtual
    machines for example). Battery runtime became clearly worse, despite
    the fact that I have all the drivers and power management stuff installed
    and apparently working correctly. The higher load on the GPU may
    be one reason.
    They work for me, since the manufacturer provides the drivers. I'd
    suggest to check for /all/ the drivers you'd need first (seriously)!


    Kai-Uwe v. d. Ohe, Feb 19, 2007
  4. Bobby

    Conor Guest

    1) Yes...just.
    2) Dire.
    3) Quite a few.
    3) Yes.

    I have tried Vista with 512MB RAM. It wasn't nice. Think XP with 128MB.
    Conor, Feb 19, 2007
  5. Running Vista is not just a question of processor speed and RAM.. drivers
    for video, Ethernet (especially wireless) and sound may not be available now
    or ever.. check with the manufacturer before proceeding..


    Mike Hall
    MS MVP Windows Shell/User
    Mike Hall - MS MVP Windows Shell/User, Feb 19, 2007
  6. Bobby

    R. McCarty Guest

    Not only drivers, but there are applications that can't work under Vista.

    The expense of the Operating System upgrade may not be all you'll be
    required to purchase. Security software is available for no-cost but I'd
    inventory what apps you have and visit the vendor website to check on
    compatibility or if a update/patch to allow Vista use is available.

    512 Megabytes is a little low for Vista. It will consume most all of that
    for just normal operation.

    If you do upgrade, do yourself a favor and get an imaging program and
    backup your current setup. If you upgrade to Vista and it fails to meet
    your goals you can roll back to XP fairly quickly/easily.
    Acronis True Image 10.0 Home Version is what I'd recommend.
    R. McCarty, Feb 19, 2007
  7. Bobby

    Bobby Guest

    Thanks for the advice.

    How do I use Acronis to backup my laptop? Does it backup the entire system?
    How then do I re-install it if I have to?


    Bobby, Feb 19, 2007
  8. Bobby

    R. McCarty Guest

    Two ways, either from the GUI based install in Windows or use the
    Boot Builder Optical disk that you create when you install the app.
    You can burn the image directly to Optical media if your notebook
    has that capability. It's just a little more error prone due to buffering.
    What I do on notebooks is use a small USB external drive called a
    Firelite ( 40.0 Gigabyte ). I set the destination to it and then once the
    image is created burn that to Optical media. This done using the boot
    CD-R disk. USB destinations is best done on High Speed (USB2)
    ports. Trying to image across USB-1(.1) is like watching paint dry.

    One thing about any imaging program - you want to select the option
    to Verify the image. This doubles the time, but does a verification pass
    on the image. Nothing is worse than having a backup you can't use.
    R. McCarty, Feb 19, 2007
  9. Ain't that the truth.. :)


    Mike Hall
    MS MVP Windows Shell/User
    Mike Hall - MS MVP Windows Shell/User, Feb 19, 2007
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