Dell Vostro 420 to Windows 7

I am going to install an upgrade copy of W7 on my Vostro 420 and windows advisor says Virtualization technology not supported with my computer ... also Aero not supported ... Dell is not any help explaining why ... Intel Core 2 Quad Q8200 (2.33 GHz, 4M, L2Chashe,1333FSB) ... 3 GB memory ... 256 MB ATI Radeon HD 3450 ... XP ... can someone explain what I need to upgrade to allow virtualization ... is it the graphics card? ... and if so ... what do I need to look for in graphics card that will work ... also planning on 64 bit ... Thanks ... John
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  1. Best answer
    Virtualization is an instruction set on the CPU, not the graphics card. The Q8200 does not include it, but the Q8300 and Q8400 do. Upgrade to one of these (or go even higher, to the Q9000 series) provided it doesn't void your warranty. In my experience, Dell doesn't really care how you modify the system, but if there is a problem, it must have all of the factory provided hardware installed before being serviced.

    Is there a particular reason why you need the Virtualization instruction set anyway? If you're not interested in running Windows XP Mode once under 7, or another virtualization product like VMware, then I wouldn't worry about this.

    I can't imagine why Aero wouldn't be supported on that Radeon 3450. It's at the lower end of the scale, but should still be able to run Aero.
  2. Thanks ... I was thinking that some of my older programs might not run on W7 and having Virtual XP would help with that ... but I am not sure how much of an issue that is ... 64 bit ... with this machine ... any issues? Thanks again ... John
  3. The Q8200 does have the Intel64 instruction set. You will be able to run 64 bit Windows 7 on your Vostro.
  4. Final update ... 10 hours of fun yesterday ... but ... Windows 7 64 bit running ... and all of my software is running fine ... printer ... etc ... very easy transition from XP to Windows 7 as far as using system ... not radical change ... now ... extra bonus ... Second Life ... which was marginal with my graphics card ... is now running much better ... no crashes every 20 minutes ... so the W7 use of cpu is better ... I guess ... which makes SL work better ... all good ... thanks ... John
  5. John, what process did you follow to do the upgrade to W7? I have the same configuration (a little more ram) and have not been able to upgrade successfully, keep ending up with a black screen and a mouse cursor. Any input will be appreciated.

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