I went home over Thanksgiving determined to upgrade my family’s computers to Windows 7. This is my story.
My immediate family has a fleet of six computers of varying pedigrees – some custom-built desktops built mostly from my hand-me-down parts, and some laptops bought from Dell and Acer. It was a wide group of hardware, and I have had trouble supporting everything for them in Windows XP – the number of updates and the variety of different drivers required to make these machines tick was becoming too hard to manage. Since my family elected to skip Windows Vista, it was time for a change.
I knew it might be a bumpy road – there were some old software packages they used that I wasn’t sure would work, and given HP’s reluctance to provide new drivers for their old products I had some doubts about their printer working as well.
Today I’ll be covering the first three computer upgrades – I’ve included computer specifications and notes about how the computer is used for reference. Tomorrow I’ll write about the final three upgrades and wrap things up with some thoughts and conclusions about how everything went.
None of these are high-end machines – many of them use older or slower processors and nearly all feature integrated graphics chips, and some of them sneak right in under the minimum system requirements for the OS. I think you’ll find it helpful, though, because it’s a pretty good snapshot of the computers that normal people use to get things done – nothing laughably awful, but nothing special either. Most people experience Windows not on quad-core computers with dual graphics cards, but on PCs like these.