Advice On Upgrading To Windows Vista
With few months away for the birth of a new child in
Windows family of operating system, Windows Vista, Microsoft
has released a tool to analyze the requirements to stay
prepared for installing it. One will see in this article,
what is that tool, its installation and its use. We
will also see some topics such as, what is the minimum
system requirement for installing windows Vista, key
reason for upgrading to vista, what are the different
editions of Windows Vista.
What are Advisor tools?
Wow, what a surprise! With advisor tool, computers
can analyze themselves and tell human brains what they
want more in order to run new software, which is going
to be released in the near future. One needs to simply
install the tool and sit for a while, to take the advice.
I was really surprised to see such an intelligent tool.
Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor tool:
This is a tool which can tell the PC users what they
require for running windows vista with all new features.
It also tells the user what hardware component of computer
requires to be changed, before installing Windows Vista.
The advisor tool is also a beta version, which is yet
to be released as full version. The upgrade advisor
tool was released during May 2006.
How it works?
It will start its work by collecting computer’s
hardware details, including the external devices attached
to it. It then prepares a report based on the details
What one need to have before running advisor tool?
This is the easiest question, that can be answered
by one word, i.e. perhaps “the computer”
itself. But, additionally, you need to have internet
connection for accessing advisor tool itself. Apart
from that, the computer should run Windows XP or Windows
Why so? Can we install and run on operating systems
other than Windows XP, Windows Vista Beta?
It will not work on any other Windows family of operating
systems. The reason is that, Windows Vista Full version
will be the improved version of Windows XP and Windows
Vista Beta. So, Microsoft believes that the computers
running Windows XP should be able to run Windows Vista.
What should users do if they are running Windows 95,
98, 2000, ME?
They should compare the computer hardware with the
list given in the Microsoft web site. Of course, if
they still want the Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor to
run, then they have no other options, but, need to purchase
and install Windows XP.
Are there any problems with the Vista Upgrade Advisor
Yes, that is why, still it is under beta, which means
it is a test version, which is little far apart from
the final release of advisor tool. It will not be able
to tell definitely, in the final report that, whether
some of the cards work or not in Windows Vista.
Basic requirements for running Windows Vista:
In microsoft.com, Microsoft has released a list of
“Minimum supported system requirements”
and said as follows,“PCs that meet the minimum
supported system requirements will be able to run the
core features of Windows Vista with the basic user experience.”According
to its list, the minimum system requirements are as
Processor - 800 MHz 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor
(Processor speed is specified as the nominal operational
processor frequency for the device. Some processors
have power management which allows the processor to
run at a lower rate to save power.)
System Memory - 512 M.B.
GPU - SVGA (800x600)
Graphics Memory - -
HDD - 20 GB.
HDD Free Space - 15 GB
Optical Drive - CD-ROM
(The CD-ROM may be external (not integral, not built
into the system))
File System - NTFS (New Technology File System)
However, one will need to have higher Hard disk capacity
to install other programs apart from Windows Vista.
If one wants to run aero features that come with Windows
Vista, then they should have a Graphics card which supports
Direct X 9.0.
What should one require to look for when they purchase
a new PC?
They can go for PCs which are designated as Windows
Vista Capable or Windows Vista Premium Ready.
I have already got report from the windows upgrade
advisor tool which is under its beta. Should I require
running it again after a month or two?
The answer seems to be yes, because, Microsoft may
upgrade the tool itself to accompany new requirement
specifications. Also, some of the devices that are not
detected by beta may get detected by the new release
of upgrade advisor tool.
How to start Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor tool:
One can start Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor tool by
using the link, http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=65926&clcid=0x409.This
presents a File Download dialog box. However, the above
said link may get changed. In such case, one can go
to www.microsoft.com and type “Windows Vista Upgrade
Advisor” and press the search button. This will
build a list of different links, which is pertaining
to the typed search condition. Select the link which
has a 90% relevancy to the topic. It may be the first
link. This may take one to “Windows Vista Upgrade
Advisor” introduction page. Navigate through the
page to look for keyword “Download”. Click
on download or link given there. You will get the file
download dialog. Now click “Save” button
to save the File to hard disk. After completing downloading
and scanning procedures, run the file. One will get
a security warning displaying the Name and Publisher
of the file. Make sure that the name is Windows Vista
Upgrade Advisor, and the Publisher is Microsoft Corporation.
Now, click the run button. If the name and publisher
are incorrect do not run the file by clicking “Don’t
Run” button. Delete the file and try to download
it again. Now, one will get a welcome dialog. From now
on, one can proceed by reading through the instructions
given by the installation wizard. At the end of installation
wizard, a dialog box with a check box indicating “Launch
Microsoft Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor” will
be displayed. Mark it to run the advisor tool directly
on closing the installation wizard.
Should one required to keep all devices that are connected
to the computer turned ON?
Yes. This is because, the advisor tool is built in
a way that it detects all devices that are attached
to the computer and turned ON. It will report whether
these devices are compatible for use with Windows Vista.
This is most important point for devices such as printers,
scanners etc. which are most frequently used.
What does one gain by using the Windows Vista upgrade
As said previously, it is going to give a report on
whether Windows Vista can run on available hardware
devices or not. Moreover, it gives an idea of about
new supported devices. It also gives an idea of upgrading
or changing the system, depending on the current hardware
Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor performs the task in
4 basic sections.
- Scanning and collecting system hardware, software
- Allowing the user to choose what he or she wants
to do with Windows Vista.
- Suggest the user what hardware it requires to run
- Suggest the user what softwares and drivers will
work on Windows Vista, and also shows concern about
Stages in Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor tool:
There are 5 stages.
1. Scan system,
2. Feature selection,
3. Hardware Assessment,
4. Software Assessment,
5. Print all details.
The Scan system stage will scan the computer system
collecting the hardware information including external
devices that were attached to the system. It is perhaps
the starting screen of Windows Vista Upgrade Advisor
The next screen stage is feature selection. In this
stage, user will select which type of work, that one
does using Windows Vista. Windows Vista can be used
for variety of applications. One can make use of Windows
Vista to play games, to do office work, professional
work such as programming, web designing, play multimedia,
browse internet, connect to network and copy some required
things etc. These can be selected in Feature selection
screen which informs the advisor tool what one want
frequently from Windows Vista. For example, the user
may select play multimedia. Then the upgrade advisor
tool suggests that, for playing multimedia one should
have high quality graphics card and good sound card
in case, the graphics card and sound card is not present
in the system.
The Hardware assessment section tells the user, which
are the supported devices that can be detected by the
Windows Vista. It also, gives a report that tells user
of which part of the system hardware such as memory,
Hard disk, CD-Drive etc. is required to be replaced
in the system.
The software assessment section gives a Device and
Software Report, which contains a list of devices that
do not have Windows Vista compatible drivers. This means,
the devices marked will not be able to get recognized
through Windows Vista, which requires a search for new
drivers or a replacement. Search in the manufacturer’s
web site for updated driver, before replacing the equipment
with a new one. Some drivers will be installed by Windows
Vista automatically. Such device drivers are listed
The last section gives the option of taking printout
or saving the report of all the four sections. This
section gives another option of saving the entire report.
Which edition suits you most?
Now, we have seen how the Windows Vista Upgrade advisor
tool works. No matter from the edition that it suggests
to install, let us see what are the 5 editions for Windows
Vista, and whom the editions are suited.
The Windows Vista Editions:
- Windows Vista Home Basic
It contains features that one can use in home environment.
It also includes advanced security features, which
secures the data in home computer.
- Windows Vista Home Premium
An improved edition from Home Basic, this edition
contains the Windows Media Center capabilities which
turn the system into a new Home entertainment center.
One can make use of Windows Media Center to record
and play favorite TV programs.
- Windows Vista Business
This edition focuses mainly on the business organization
of any size. The operating system is designed, keeping
in mind, the needs of the business community. There
will be more protection to business data. There will
be warnings for impending hardware failures. The operating
system contains a set of backup tools that can be
used to create backups at regular intervals. One can
get connected to work place via network even if one
- Windows Vista Enterprise
This edition is designed to lower the IT costs and
risks. The edition contains all the features that
are available with Windows Vista Business. In addition
to these features, the edition contains Windows BitLocker
Drive encryption, which uses hardware based data encryption
technology. It also comes with a set of new features
which ensures application compatibility with other
operating systems including non windows operating
systems such as UNIX, Linux etc. This includes a new
feature of the Windows Vista Enterprise, the Virtual
PC Express. The operating system also contains additional
features which includes advanced multi language support.
- Windows Vista Ultimate
The edition is the most powerful, feature rich edition,
consisting of almost all features. One can work from
any where, which includes home, office, while traveling
etc. It includes high networking capabilities. One
can enjoy games, music, videos with advanced effects
and newest set of features. It also combines the features
that are available with the Business Edition along
with the features of Home Premium and also with Enterprise
Windows Vista can only be installed in NTFS. This
makes a problem who are having FAT32 and a lot of
data stored in single HDD. To convert FAT32 to NTFS,
one should be ready to loose data.
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