Quick Look: Notebook Performance With Windows XP, Vista, And 7

Windows XP

Windows XP has long been a favored operating system for true enthusiasts. Most have simply refused to adopt Windows Vista, citing its bloated behavior and poor driver compatibility out of the gate. Apps take longer to load, purportedly, the operating system takes longer to boot, and shut-downs take longer, too.

We installed Windows XP with Service Pack 3, but had to sail around an issue with AHCI, which we enabled on the system for all operating systems. To get the installation started, we had to create a setup disc that includes the ACPI-compatible Intel Matrix storage drivers. All drivers listed on the test setup page were installed, as well as all Windows XP updates available by November 10.

We made the following settings to the portable power scheme:

  • Switch off hard drive after 10 minutes
  • Shutdown system at 5% battery capacity
  • Display remains on at all times
  • No screen saver
  • No standby feature