Is Windows Vista replacing XP or is this optional?

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I've noticed many ads mentioning Windows Vista capable or Premium
ready. Is this the new edition of Windows replacing XP or is  it
optional? Is it worth putting off a purchase of a laptop to wait for
it? I honestly don't know if this will be an improvement over XP.Thanks
for your responses.

Re: Is Windows Vista replacing XP or is this optional? wrote:
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At this time, Microsoft is issuing upgrade coupons for Vista if one
purchases a 'Vista Capable' computer.  The computer MUST HAVE the 'Vista
Capable' sticker.

  I believe that a Vista Capable computer sold with XP Home will have an
upgrade to Vista Home Basic; Vista Capable computers sold with XP Pro
will have an upgrade to Vista Home Premium.  There will be some charge
for the upgrades, suspected to be minimal to cover the cost of mailing
the CD.

One must have an upgrade coupon with an upgrade code to get the upgrade.
Check the box for the coupon *before you purchase* and leave the big box
store, if that is where you purchase the computer.

FWIW, after running betas of Vista on my Intel 830 dual core, I believe
that one will want to upgrade if the computer has the Vista Capable
sticker.  Otherwise, forget it or find a Vista Capable computer.


Re: Is Windows Vista replacing XP or is this optional?

There is a significant charge for the upgrade to Vista Home Basic, but
no charge for upgrades to Home Premium or Business (however, shipping,
typically $10 to $12, may also be added).  The pricing (including the
shipping cost) is set by the vendor.  The charge for the Home Basic
upgrade is typically $40 to $70 [possibly plus shipping].  This makes
paying $100 more to get XP Pro instead of XP Home worthwhile.  The best
deal for most users are computers that have XP Media Center as the
standard OS at the price of Home (LOTS of Dell and Toshiba laptops have
been coming with Media Center for the past 6 months).

The requirement for a coupon is at the discretion of the vendor.
Actually, most vendors are not using coupons.  In most cases, you go
online to a web site and enter the purchase date, store where purchased,
laptop serial number and XP Product key.  They MAY require you to mail
in a copy of the receipt and/or UPC label and/or the XP COA on the
bottom of the laptop.  But, in most cases, no actual coupon is used
(although some vendors and some retailers ARE using coupons).  Each
manufacturer is "doing their own thing" as far as validation and setting
their charges for the Home Basic upgrade, and shipping if they are
charging that (some are charging shipping, some are not).

Note that some laptops still being sold can't run the "glass" interface
of Vista versions above Home Basic (also sometimes called "Aero").  I
wrote a separate post that has some more details on this.

Quaoar wrote:
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Re: Is Windows Vista replacing XP or is this optional?

Ultimately, Vista will replace XP, but for the immediate future XP will
continue to be available.  However, it's likely that by as early as next
January, all new retail computers being made and sold pre-configured in
stores will have Vista on them instead of XP.  OEMs like Dell that
build-to-order may continue to offer a choice of XP or Vista for a
period of time, but that will be limited.  There will come a time,
however (although it may be a year or two away) when you can neither buy
a new computer with XP, nor buy a new copy of XP software, from any
source whatsoever.  But that time is not in the immediate future.

Virtually all computers bought since October 26th (until March 15, 2007)
that came with XP from the factory are eligible to receive a reduced
cost or free upgrade copy of Vista from the manufacturer by mail next
spring.  Some of the laptop vendors are charging shipping (typically $10
to $12) for this, some are not.

I'd actually argue that the best thing to do is to buy a computer now,
during the period while they are still coming with XP and you also get a
reduced price or free copy of Vista.  This gives you choice; once they
start coming with Vista preloaded (and in some cases that may happen as
early as late this month), you will be stuck with Vista unless you want
to buy a copy of XP on your own.

Note that there are 4 major "editions" of Vista of interest to
individuals, Home Basic, Home Premium, Business and Ultimate.  Home
Basic is crap and you really don't want it (unless your computer cannot
run any of the higher versions).  Most individuals will either want Home
Premium or Ultimate (ultimate has "everything", but it's $400 for the
full product version or about $260 for the upgrade version).

As I mentioned above, purchases since Oct. 26th are eligible for a
reduced price or totally free (excluding any shipping charge) copy of
Vista.  This works as follows:  if the computer only has XP Home, you
only get Vista Basic (the crap version), AND YOU MAY HAVE TO BUY IT, at
a reduced cost of $40 to $70 (the computer maker sets the price),
possibly plus shipping.  People whose computer came with XP Media Center
get Home Premium (free, except possibly for shipping), people whose
computer came with XP Pro get Vista Business (free, except possibly for
shipping).  One of Vista's features is the "anytime upgrade", whereby
you can go online at any time, pay a fee with a credit card (basically
the price difference) and upgrade your current Vista edition to any
higher Vista edition.  The pricing on this has not yet been announced,
but the edition-to-edition upgrade cost is approximately (very rough
estimate here) $60 to $90 per edition from Home Basic through Home
Premium and Business to Ultimate.

Many older computers and a few that are still being sold are incapable
of running some of the features of Vista that exist in versions above
Home Basic.  Expect to need 1GB of memory and a fairly recent and
advanced video card.  For laptops with Intel chipsets and integrated
video, the video systems prior to Intel GMA (Graphics Media Accelerator)
950 do not support the video requirements of Vista editions beyond Home
Basic (such advanced Vista editions will install and run, but without
the advanced video features).  There is a bit of a question about GMA
950, but it appears that it does run the advanced features (and, FWIW,
there is a very, very slim glimmer of hope that at some point in the
future, GMA 900 MIGHT be able to run them, but currently it does not and
the official word from MS and Intel is that there are no plans to ever
support the "glass" interface on GMA900 in the future). wrote:
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