Replace your Laptop Hard Drive - and avoid Vista

I had a 60Gb hard drive in my three year old laptop. I was running out of space trying to keep all my projects synced on it, which was the only way to work remote in an effective manner. Needed a new hard drive, at the least.

So, a simply run down to my local computer store to get a new hard drive. I start looking at prices and it looks like 160Gb to 200Gb will work nicely in my laptop. That’s really all I needed. But for almost a $100, I started musing about buying a new laptop.

Well, thanks to Microsoft, that idea was dead before I even started to give it any real consideration. Since I could have used some more memory (which would have been another $100+ at least), I started to think about buying a brand-new inexpensive HP. Faster processor, bigger hard drive, wider screen, more memory. And they start under $500.

One quick walk through of all the laptops on display quickly ended my thinking. Every single PC-based laptop in the store came with…. Windows Vista. No way was I going to upgrade to Vista. Not that day. Not this year. Not next year. Maybe in 2009. Maybe.

The whole idea was to be more productive. Not be slowed down by incompatibility issues, or worse (once I spent a month solving those), a faster processor slowed down by giving me a bunch of goofy “glass”-like effects. That isn’t going to make me a better web developer.

So, I bought my new hard drive and left. I also bought a little USB hardware kit for about $15, so my old 60Gb is now a nice portable USB hard drive. Too bad I didn’t think about doing this when I bought a new 4Gb USB thumbdrive a few months ago.

Bottom line is that even though I was only half-seriously considering a new laptop, the Vista plague eliminated the idea. I’m no Apple fan boy (far from it), but I think I’ll wait a year or so and get a MacBook - just to have something different for remote work. But I can’t forsee ever abandoning a ‘real’ PC for my desktop - unless Microsoft doesn’t fix the Vista mess in the next year. Else, I’ll go to Linux. My children already use it. I don’t know what I’ll do without Photoshop or Dreamweaver, but those are probably the last two serious desktop apps for which I must have a PC. There are alternatives, but they require a learning curve - which takes time. And time is money. But at the rate that Vista has bombed, it might be time that I have to take at some point in the future. I hope not, so you boys (and gals!) in Redmond better get back on the horse and fix this mess.

Oh, by the way, lower the price of Vista at some point… upwards of $400 for a quality operating system? Does Microsoft think they are IBM in 1989 selling O/S 2?

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