Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

Power User - Should I Upgrade?

Last response: in Windows 8
Share
November 6, 2012 3:05:12 AM

I've got a newer (less than a year) Samsung Series 6 running Win 7 64-bit with a 128GB SSD, Core i5. I'm a "Power User", usually 7 ot 8 apps open and 12 or more tabs on Chrome. I've tweaked the O/S to maximize performance (indexing off, other registry hacks.) Used to be a PC/Net Admin in my younger days. My machine is fast, rock solid, no bloatware, etc.

BUT, I got a free copy of Win 8 Pro. Boot time is not that big of a deal (SSD has fast boot as it is - what is it with all you ADD people and your 7 second versus 15 second boot times? LOL). I'm not adverse to change and pick things up quickly and would be kind of fun/cool to try a new O/S. Will never pay for an overpriced Mac and Ubuntu too much of a crap shoot as far as getting everything to work. So I'm kind of thinking, why not? - go to W8.

My main concern is that I simply don't have much free time any more to be tweaking stuff. With a family of 4 and a gazillion devices in my house to "maintain" I just can't spend my weekend monkeying around with a new O/S. It needs to "just work" out of the box. Considering my notebook is pretty new, and reading reviews, it sounds like Microsoft already learned their hard lesson from the Vista days about prematurely releasing buggy OS'

I know there's never a 100% guarantee but would appreciate other Power User's experience so far that are sort of in the same boat as me. Should I just shelve it for a few months, or take the plunge? One concern is I've only got 5GB left on my C partition and I just cleaned it. Is there a way to go back to Win 7 if 8 doesn't work? If everything works well for a few months, is there some option to remove all remnants of W7 to reclaim some free space?

More about : power user upgrade

November 6, 2012 3:24:19 AM

then don't and just get a cheap drive
m
0
l
a c 383 * Windows 8
November 6, 2012 5:04:56 AM

You'd need 20Gb disk space on your SSD if running 64bit OS. Otherwise should be no problem, one click to get to the Desktop which is the same but without a Start Button. There are lots of keyboard shortcuts to get to places formerly accessible from the Start Button, you soon get used to them. There have been some reports of driver problems with Wireless Network adapters, advise you check which one you have and google to see if it's one of the problem ones. If you were to upgrade you will have the choice of upgrading your present OS or creating media such as disk or USB to clean install. The Media route would enable you to, say, install on your data HDD to try it out before committing it to your SSD. If you do find 20Gb space and upgrade 7 it will be placed in a folder named Windows (Old) Seems you could revert your system back to 7
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971760
There are 3rd party apps to make 8 'feel' like 7. You may have difficulty in 8 not transferring your Video drivers across, I persevered on a TX2000 and managed to install the Vista ones using compatibility options
m
0
l
Related resources
November 6, 2012 6:52:29 AM

downgrading is worse than upgrading as far potential problems, plus you can imagine MS spending much more time on the upgrade system than the downgrade. A fresh install is alway best for a "Power User"
m
0
l
November 6, 2012 9:39:58 AM

I would try running it in a virtual machine first if your just not sure..

As for only having 5gb left on your drive, I recommend buying another one.. I bought a 500gb 7200rpm drive for $30 on ebay the other day.. Look around and you will find something :) 



again, running it in a virtual machine first will mean, if problems come up, no need to worry just turn off the VM.. play with it another day when you have time.. Once you feel you have everything sorted and can set up win8 fast and efficiently, wipe your drive and do a clean install..

hope this helped
m
0
l
November 6, 2012 1:09:57 PM

Thanks for the input.

a) I'm not worried about not "liking" the O/S. I've read enough and understand the new start menu and other differences. I embrace change as long as it's not a step backward.

b) The 500GB drive isn't an option. I want only SSD. Performance difference is major. Love SSD. (My Notebook only has one drive bay and I'm not going to hook it to an external - I do backup over network using Gigabit Ethernet though.)

Seems like I'm best imaging the C drive right before the upgrade. All my data is on D partition. Worst case scenario I just restore.

25GB fee, REALLY?! That seems absurd. Maybe minimum 5 or 10, but 25GB seems REALLY high for just the O/S.


m
0
l
November 6, 2012 1:14:09 PM

I wonder what the space usage is on an upgrade where you delete Win7 after compared to a fresh install. I'm all for a fresh install, but it will probably turn it from a 1 hour process into an all-day process as Ive got tons of apps to reinstall, special custom batch files that are syncing my data simultansously with Skydrive and Google Drive, etc. etc.

My gut is telling me though, plug in my eSata external drive, image everything, then wipe the C drive and start from scratch that way I won't have any remnants of things I don't need. I can live with reinstalling drivers and apps. Still sounds like a lot of work. Ugh.
m
0
l
a c 383 * Windows 8
November 6, 2012 1:18:12 PM

consultant said:
Thanks for the input.

a) I'm not worried about not "liking" the O/S. I've read enough and understand the new start menu and other differences. I embrace change as long as it's not a step backward.

b) The 500GB drive isn't an option. I want only SSD. Performance difference is major. Love SSD. (My Notebook only has one drive bay and I'm not going to hook it to an external - I do backup over network using Gigabit Ethernet though.)

Seems like I'm best imaging the C drive right before the upgrade. All my data is on D partition. Worst case scenario I just restore.

25GB fee, REALLY?! That seems absurd. Maybe minimum 5 or 10, but 25GB seems REALLY high for just the O/S.

The Upgrade Assistant probably needs that space to store 'Windows Old', during the upgrade there is an opportunity to choose whether or not to keep old files, however, I chose 'Keep nothing' and it still retained the old windows... I think the installation worked out at around 11-12 Gb before installing Apps.
Edit - I also had one upgrade that 'failed'on 1st attempt, the Upgrade Assistant successfully reverted back to the original OS (Vista) - it must need a fair amount of free space to be able to do that...
Just noticed you have a data partition, why not temporarily back up the data to your External and expand C for the upgrade, then re-establish D once you've cleaned up old Windows files (if there are any!)
m
0
l
a c 383 * Windows 8
November 6, 2012 1:26:40 PM

Just an aside, you can probably get an adapter to install an ordinary HDD in your Optical Drive bay, a good one will also provide a lead to enable your Optical Drive to connect via USB. Very flexible...
m
0
l
a b * Windows 8
November 6, 2012 2:16:24 PM

Like you, I'm not exactly wowed by < 20 second start up times. When I arrive at the office and turn on the machine, next stop is the coffee machine and since that renders startup time irrelevant, I don't much care.

No doubt MS has tweaked everything to show that Win8 will do better in start up and many benchies than Win7 .... w/o that it couldn't be released as no one would buy it. But from a return on investment standpoint, you'll never see a positive time return on your time investment.

Quote:
My main concern is that I simply don't have much free time any more to be tweaking stuff. With a family of 4 and a gazillion devices in my house to "maintain" I just can't spend my weekend monkeying around with a new O/S. It needs to "just work" out of the box.


there's the killer.....installing and tweaking has to all be done again. Then the inevitable driver updates, unresolved bugaboos and workarounds until the drivers mature, the new interface, etc. will eat hours of your time. Hours which will never be offset w/ miniscule improvements in benchmark performance.

However, that doesn't mean it's not fun for the computer hobbyist. What ya might wanna do is .....

1. Repartition your HD to made say 128 GB of space at the beginning of the drive.
2. Use Disk manager to call this X:\, then rename all your other partitions and back again. That is ..... take D:\ rename it to say P:\ and then rename it to D:\ again. The reason you do this is the OS named it D:\ by default in the order in which it recognized the drive. By changing it, you essentially "hardwired" it to D:\ and it will take "what you baned it" over the defaults.
3. Now unplug the data cable to the SSD after truning off the box. Note SSD should be on SATA 0 and HD on SATA 1
4. Insert the Win8 CD, start up and install the OS to the new 128 GB partition. Though you called it X:\ under Win7.....the installation can't see that cause you unplugged the SSD. This new partition will be C:\ for Windows 8.
5. After installing all the updates drivers etc., install all your old programs, games whatever that are on the HD over themselves in the same folders to set up the registry entries under Windows 8.
6. Now you can turn the machine off and plug the SSD back in. You can choose to boot to Win7 by doing nothing and boot to Win8 by selecting the HD from the Boot Order page in the BIOS.

Thats also eliminate the "go back to WIN 7" worry.

As for space .....

-Where are your e-mails being stored ? If on the SSD, move them.

-Have you 'forced" all program installs to the HD ? Many programs such as Adobe Reader require special procedures to accomplish.

-Have you "cleaned up" your HD ? http://www.stevengould.org/index.php?option=com_content...

-Moved your page and temp file locations off the SSD ?
m
0
l
November 6, 2012 6:27:15 PM

Well I went ahead and took the plunge. Just moved my 2TB eSata drive off my server and plugged it into my notebook and wow, Acronis backed up the C image in about 8 min! Booted of the Win8 DVD, formatted the partition, install went smooth and quick, 15 min. Installed my main, must-have apps in another hour. Had to go to Synaptics for a better touchpad driver (I use a wireless one with the notebook both when docked and undocked, just works better, but was jittery and the driver straight from Synaptics took care of the problem.

Interface is considerable snappier and can see it is going to grow on me. Took about 15 min to figure out my way around. For those that haven't taken the plunge, one word of advice when you do, the Windows button on your keyboard is your friend. I never used that button before but now I use it all the time to switch between the Metro BS and the Desktop.

Thumbs up. So far so good. My C drive now has 20GB free instead of 5 (need to still install a couple gigs of apps though.) So nice to have a fresh start.

The search no longer globally searches for all programs. On Win 7 I was finding it very efficient to launch programs just by partially typing them. For example, Display settings, in Win 7 I would get to "disp" and it would pop up and I'd click on it. On Win 8, it only searches the apps. You have to go into Settings, then search "disp" but by that time you already see it amongst a gazillion other programs. The apps search functionality was better on Win 7. A minor drawback and I may just not be using it right.
m
0
l
!