Pull the trigger on a new box?
May 17, 2011 11:45 PM   Subscribe

I'm thinking of upgrading my computer.

From a Dell GX520 to a HP Pavilion p6710f Desktop (seen here.)

Short version: P4 2.8ghz, 1g ram, 80gb hd, cd-rom reader vs. Quad core 3ghz, 4g ram, 1tb hd, dvd writer.

It looks like a good step up, and who doesn't like shiny new toys, but I had a few questions. This is a close out, maybe I should wait for the next big sale? But $400 doesn't seem that bad. Upgrade to W7 pro for $90?

What do I need to do to move over the programs I have to the new machine? Naturally, I don't have all of the old install discs.
posted by Marky to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Upgrade to W7 pro for $90?

I think for a home user there's no particular reason to go with W7 Professional over Home Premium. You might want to compare the features though.

What do I need to do to move over the programs I have to the new machine? Naturally, I don't have all of the old install discs.

What sort of programs do you normally use? Just asking as it can sometimes be troublesome trying to copy installed programs from one PC to another.
posted by fearthehat at 12:02 AM on May 18, 2011

Upgrade to W7 pro for $90?

Hell no. Just bought a new laptop, W7Home Premium is fine, and the upgrade would have been $45, not $90.
posted by orthogonality at 12:15 AM on May 18, 2011

Be sure to use ninite.com to install all of the convenient free programs in one nice automated install. I've recently got two new computers and it just works awesomely.
posted by koolkat at 1:27 AM on May 18, 2011

Use Magical JellyBean keyfinder on your old computer to get your licence keys. It doesn't solve the problem of not having the install disks but it is a good start.

Seconding ninite, that thing has saved me hours of installation. Keep the executable that you get from the site because you can re-run that again in the future to quickly update all your applications. Best of all, you can be doing something else whilst this happens as it runs unattended.

Use the PC decrapifier to automatically un-install all those rubbish free or trial applications HP unhelpfully pre-install for you.

Replace the 30 day trial of whatever virus checker HP bundle with Microsoft Security Essentials.
posted by mr_silver at 3:04 AM on May 18, 2011

What OS are you moving from? There's some upgrade/migration paths (eg. Windows Easy Transfer, ImageX, etc from XP vs upgrading the HD from Vista), but the steps depend on the starting OS.
posted by samsara at 5:51 AM on May 18, 2011

Check out:


Some good info, builds, sales information from people in there. You can also post your build and people will comment on it for you. Good community.
posted by OuttaHere at 6:32 AM on May 18, 2011 [1 favorite]

You really only need Pro if you need to connect to a Windows domain. This gives you remote administration, group security policies, all that corporate stuff. Unless you're a windows sysadmin, it's very unlikely you may need anything from win7pro at home.

Pro has built-in disc encryption, but there are quite good freeware alternatives: truecrypt, for example.
posted by bonehead at 7:40 AM on May 18, 2011

Response by poster: "What sort of programs do you normally use?"
"What OS are you moving from?"

Mostly web, some Word, some simple games.
Running under XP Pro.
The only program I expect to be a problem in Fontographer 4.15. I'm fairly sure it won't run without installing VmWare.

I'd like to keep some old hardware (printer, vinyl cutter) that want serial and parallel ports.
Add a card, or USB adapters?

Thanks for ninite, I had never heard of it. And I totally forgot about decrapifier.
posted by Marky at 11:38 AM on May 18, 2011

Make sure you check with your manufacturer on those older peripherals for Win7 drivers and compatibility issues. Even with the ports available, you might run into problems - sometimes XP mode can help with this, but YMMV
posted by pupdog at 11:52 AM on May 18, 2011

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