Goodbye Vista - too sloooowwwww for my T7700 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo

By tonyhughes Hughes, in , posted: 24-Jun-2008 20:58

So my new job came with my choice of notebook (within reason).

I chose an HP 8510p 15.4" 1680x1050 2.4GHz T7700 Core 2 Duo.

I chose it for the following reasons:

  • Nice and solid (though not quite as solid feeling as a good Thinkpad)
  • Stylish
  • Everything else in the office is HP (so docks and chargers are interchangeable)
  • T7700 CPU - I wanted a decent grunter
  • Good screen resolution

And lots more...

One of the deciding factors was the OS. For my role, I will be dealing with a lot of MS stuff, so Mac or Linux isn't really a serious option for me at work (well.... maybe, we do have a Citrix server, but I prefer to work on a local desktop).

The 8510p comes with licencing and media for Vista Business 32 AND 64bit as well as XP Professional 32bit.

I really want to like Vista - I have been using it on and off since early Betas. Its nicer to use than XP, but dammit, its just so slow!

Really - the laptop is a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo with 2GB of RAM, and Vista takes forever to respond to a CTRL - ALT - DEL to be allowed to enter credentials, takes ages to respond to a fingerswipe on the fingerprint reader, and once a fingerprint or a password is accepted, forever to actually logon.

I am just creating an image of the system I have spent a week or two getting up to scratch (in case I ever feel inclined again to go ahead and commit the self-flagellation that is running Vista).

Then I will install XP, and all will be well again.

Actually, seeing how well XP runs on my 2.4GHz C2D Macbook natively in Bootcamp - I cant wait to get it on a similar spec HP, in fact the HP has 4MB L2 cache, so it will be interesting to see them side by side.

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Comment by chakkaradeep, on 24-Jun-2008 23:08

Is this the Vista which had come with HP? Try to do a clean installation of Vista without any third party tools. I afraid that since HP doesnt provide a DVD of Vista as Dell does, your only option is using a complete Restore which also restores the applications that it came up with. If you have a disc lying somewhere, then its worth installing Vista without any crapware. It is also good if you have Vista along with SP1 in it. I have seen many laptops coming default by Vista installed takes ages to load and the problem all the time moves to Vista

Ofcourse Vista has problems, but these things makes it even more

Comment by Dratsab, on 24-Jun-2008 23:38

This article may interest you... It relates specifically to the slowness of Vista on new machines due to the rush to get them onto the market and the amount of "crapware" installed.

Having said that, I'm running Vista (with SP1) on an HP DV6603AX which has 2gb ram, an nVidia 8400M GS with 128mb ram and an AMD Turion 64 x2 with no problems whatsoever.  It loads up nice and quick and runs really well, so I'm a little surprised at the results you're getting on your HP machine.

Author's note by tonyhughes, on 25-Jun-2008 10:42

Dratsab - that is a great article - worth reading.

XP is FLYING on this machine, but the HP did infact come with Vista media, which if its anything like the XP media, then despite being an HP branded disc, is actually a clean install (being that there is a seperate driver/application disk provided). The 2nd disc gave me a tickbox for all the crapware and drivers, to let me choose what I did and didn't want.

I am going to finish getting this XP up to scratch, image it, then do a clean Vista install I think.

Comment by Dratsab, on 25-Jun-2008 11:25

Thanks for the comments!

Look forward to hearing the final results...

Author's note by tonyhughes, on 26-Jun-2008 00:08

Okay, so just got nearly everything installed, including FF3, SP1, a quintillion and four updates, about twenty reboots, lots of tweaks (disabling of animation of maximising windows etc, disabling non-essential services etc etc).

Its flying along - not quite as "BOOM - HEADSHOT!!!" as XP is, but more a "Wow - fast" type reaction.

I am very happy I did this clean install. Once I have my last few apps installed, and browser plugins etc etc, I will definitley take an image of this!

Comment by inane, on 26-Jun-2008 10:15

Tony - have you actually considered Ubuntu?
I know that with your working environment you need windows, but do you need any form of 3d accelerated windows?

I have a Dell Inspiron 1720 laptop, similar spec to your HP (dual core 2.4, 250gb 7200rpm disk, 4gb ram)

It came with vista loaded on it, (and now due to Age of conan I have a 50gb partition just for that)

But in my day to day running I use ubuntu, with KVM/QEMU and Hardware Virtualisation,

and run Windows XP & Windows Server 2003 R2 under KVM/QEMU and they run great,  I can run them as the image, or MSTSC from the ubuntu desktop into the local system and its indistinguishable from a full install.

Honestly I found this was the best solution, and Its not like I don't run much, the XP image runs Office 2k7, Office 2k3, visual studio, and a bunch more java apps, etc.

the Server image runs 2x Sql Server 2k5 and a number of other apps, and they run happily side by side.

I know you have had all the other suggestions from the MS buffs and you like bootcamp,

But whilst I haven't run bootcamp, I did try a fresh install of vista (and that was faster that the version that came with dell) but the comparision against ubuntu, and the images speeds themselves, was a different league.

so if you get the chance I'd recommend you try it.

Comment by lapimate, on 26-Jun-2008 23:38

Why is it necessary to do a clean install (on a near-new PC) of Vista rather than just uninstall the unwanted apps/tools/services etc? Do the uninstalls leave too much junk around - eg in registry? Is it evidence-based that such clean installs are notably superior to "clean-ups", or simply anecdotal?

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