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Author Topic: Win-XP Worth It?  (Read 1024 times)
K3AN
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Posts: 787




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« on: March 03, 2006, 05:37:44 PM »

Reading threads like the "SAM callsign database slow printing in XP" in this forum make me wonder if I should ever upgrade to a newer Microsoft operating system. I run 98SE on the den desktop and hamshack laptop and have no stability problems at all. I would be interested in hearing why hams upgrade to XP for their home/hamshack computers.

Actually I can think of one. When the Laserjet IIIP finally dies, I'm sure its replacement, whatever it is, won't be supported in 98SE. But are there other reasons besides peripheral device support?
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KE4DRN
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Posts: 3730




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« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2006, 07:28:06 PM »

Good question !

Most new computers ship with the latest version of
o/s so that is one big reason.

I don't care for xp myself but have it at work
because I have to !

For my home computers, I run win 2000 pro.

XP runs best on the newer computers while 2000 pro
will run fine on older machines.

XP has better security features like the firewall,
and also a lot of extra stuff you may not need.
Older versions of windows shipped 'wide open' and that
made it easier for the hackers to attack the computers.

73 james ke4drn
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AA6YQ
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Posts: 1768


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« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2006, 08:00:45 PM »

Windows 95, 98, 98SE, and ME all suffer from a severe architectural defect: all running applications must share a fixed pool of "resources". You cannot increase the size of this pool by adding memory.

Applications that use lots of graphics consume more resources than applications that don't.

Windows makes it easy for an application to register for automatic startup whenever Windows boots; such applications run in the background, consuming scarce resources.

When the pool of available resources becomes low, the above versions of Windows become progressively unstable. Windows ME is the worst offender; Windows 98SE is the best of this sad bunch.

So if you're only running one or two applications, or a several non-graphical applications, Windows 9X is fine. Anything more serious and you'll find NT, 2K, or XP to provide far better performance and robustness than the earlier generation.

    73,

        Dave, AA6YQ
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WD8PTB
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Posts: 670




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« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2006, 10:49:29 AM »

I will echo what Dave said. Also XP has never locked up bad enough so that I couldn't unlock it with out rebooting. 98 did that to me all the time.(I have had programs lock up but XP itself has not) XP also recognizes almost all add on devices without having to load a driver. New computers are getting cheaper all the time. Rather than upgrade your present computer to XP buy a new one. Evan a cheap new computer will be faster than an expensive old computer. Good Luck; Don WD8PTB
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WA9SVD
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Posts: 2198




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« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2006, 12:33:59 PM »

While Windoze 98 may currently "good enough," like it or not (NOT!) there will soon be the day, (similar to the demise of Win95) when Micros*** no longer supports W98.  THAT means no further security patches, etc.  And no more Tech Suppoort beyond the messag e"Upgrade to the newest version of Windoze..."
    If you are using W98, and have the current patches in place, you can continue to use it until the current generation of computers built for W98 finally die, if you don't need further security patches, and/or don't go online.  (If you don't go online or install questionable software, there's no chance of getting a virus!)
    But the reason to upgrade is that new versions of important software often won't run on W98.  And much of the new hardware won't have drivers compatible with W98.  (When is the last time you saw a printer with a parallel port?  And most USB port printers don't have drivers for W98.  (Thanks, Mr. Gates!  I still want to use my H-P LaserJet 4P until it dies, not cast it off because Micros*** decided that it won't support parallel port printers anymore!)

    But the need to upgrade is inevitable, at some point in time.  
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WA9SVD
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« Reply #5 on: March 11, 2006, 01:59:42 PM »

Resistance id futile.  You will be assimilated.  (Or rendered non-functional.)
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KC2MMI
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Posts: 620




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« Reply #6 on: March 11, 2006, 02:35:56 PM »

If you're happy with Win9x you can keep it. Sooner or later you may want new software--which no longer will run on 9x--or new hardware, which no longer supports Win9x. But unless you hit that problem, you'll never "have to" upgrade.

OTOH, Win9x is still partly Win3.x, and both of them are DOS applications. XP is Windows NT5.1, totally different code base, built form the ground up to support multiple tasking and to blow away rogue applications that might try to cheat on the hardware. XP has many design features for more stability and security that you can read about on the MS web site.

But again, if you're happy in Win9x, no one will force you to change that. And later this year, XP will be obsoleted by "Windows Vista" which probably will be called NT6 internally. More internal changes, more secure, new bells and whistles.
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AA6YQ
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« Reply #7 on: March 11, 2006, 02:45:37 PM »

The internal name for Windows Vista is "Longhorn".

   73,

      Dave, AA6YQ
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KG4RUL
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« Reply #8 on: March 11, 2006, 03:25:17 PM »

"longhorn" EH?

That is what it feels like as MS sticks it to you!

Dennis KG4RUL
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N8UZE
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Posts: 1524




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« Reply #9 on: March 11, 2006, 05:11:35 PM »

Since when doesn't XP support parallel printers!!!  I ran an old Compaq IJ300 on my new XP computer for over a year before the printer gave up the ghost and I bought a new printer.
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WA7NCL
Member

Posts: 625




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« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2006, 08:49:23 AM »

For web surfing, and ham use consider declaring independence and switch to Linux.

Try ubuntu linux at www.ubuntu.com.  Its free for the download. It has good printer support.

You can find all the applications you want for free as well.

Tell Bill where he can stick his longhorns!
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AA4PB
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Posts: 12905




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« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2006, 07:02:27 PM »

When upgrading an existing computer to XP, make sure that you have XP drivers available for items like CD drives, modems, video cards, etc. Otherwise you may have to upgrade these hardware items as well.

Personally, I'd stick with 98SE until its time to purchase a new computer.
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AA6YQ
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« Reply #12 on: March 18, 2006, 08:49:59 PM »

If your current hardware can support XP and all the drivers you care about are available, you may find that a $99 upgrade to XP and a few bucks on additional RAM  eliminates the need to spend $500 or more on a new computer.

Win98SE is the best of a very bad bunch, but its still a kludge.

   73,

      Dave, AA6YQ

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K7VO
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Posts: 1010




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« Reply #13 on: March 18, 2006, 10:19:41 PM »

I liked WA7NCL's answer, especially the last line Smiley  If you go with Ubuntu upgrade it immediately.  There was a pretty serious security flaw in the default Breezy Badger (5.10) installation.  The nice thing about Ubuntu for a ham is that most popular ham software is in the multiverse and can be added with a simple apt-get install command or from the GUI (synaptic).  Another good choice is Fedora (see: http://fedora.redhat.com )  Whilw adding ham software isn't as automated almost every ham developer has rpm packages for Fedora/Red Hat ready to go.  I have one box of each and so far I still prefer Fedora.

One note:  Linus Torvalds, the creator of Linux, said that changing operating systems is like peforming brain surgery on yourself.  Linux does things very differently than Windows.  Expect to have a learning curve.  Also expect to hate it at first.  If you stick with it (and most hams don't) in six months you'll wonder how you ever made do with something as crude as Windows.

73,
Caity
K7VO
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