These HP HDX 16 laptops are still great machines and the HP HDX 16 X16-1040US is no exception. This machine came with Windows Vista and was later upgraded to Windows 7. It is still able to go up to new machines and perform quite well. It is my friend’s laptop and he wants to get into Windows 8 app development and wanted someone who is familiar with Windows 8 to set it up. The install is not too hard but there is a little work.
I did a clean install of Windows 8, if you wanted to do an upgrade, you can upgrade from Windows 7 keeping your settings, files, and applications, however, if you upgrade from Windows Vista you can only keep the settings and files. You will have to reinstall your applications if you upgrade from Windows Vista. A clean install (you delete everything on the hard drive and start from scratch) will always give you the best performance I think.
The install is straight forward. I booted from the install disc and installed Windows 8 Pro without any issues. Once the system started and I could look at the Device Manager, there were drivers missing. While this is annoying it is easily fixed. If you look up this laptop on HP website and you look under Windows 7 (32 bit or 64 bit depending on your install) you can get the drivers you need.
There are five unknown devices that come up but you only need to install three drivers. Here are the drivers with links for 64-bit drivers. The first is the JMicron Card Reader, the second is the Validity Fingerprint Sensor, and the third is the ENE CIR Receiver, this I think is for the remote.
Once I installed these drivers the system runs great. It really runs just about as good as some machines today and it has no issues running Windows 8.
Other than the drivers I have not been able to install Hyper-V 3.0 and it looks like the processor does not support the requirements needed to run it. I have enabled Virtualization in the BIOS but I am still not able to install it. There is a message that the processor does not support Second Level Address Translation 2.0 (SLAT 2.0) This machine runs everything else just fine and actually runs better than my HP Pavilion G4. The HP HDX 16 gets a 679.1 in the PassMark Performance Test in Windows 8 and below is the Windows Experience Index.
I think it is great that Windows 8 runs so well on Vista era machines and I think that just shows the commitment Microsoft has to performance. My friend is happy with this upgrade so far too. I would say as long as you do not need Hyper-V this is a great upgrade to do on these machines if you’re looking at upgrading to Windows 8.