Install Windows 10 on HP Mini 1000 1030NR

This old HP Mini 1000 1030NR and I have been around the block a few times.  I came across it again recently and knew I needed to test Windows 10 on it, and it is easy to install Windows 10 on HP Mini 1000 1030NR.

For my test I installed Windows 10 Pro 32Bit Update 1511 from a USB thumb drive.  After the install and running Windows Update all drivers were installed which makes the install easy.  Below is the System Properties.

System Properties on HP Mini 1000 1030NR

System Properties on HP Mini 1000 1030NR

Windows 10 performs ok on the HP Mini 1000 1030NR, this laptop is getting up there in age but if you’re just doing email and creating documents then it should be ok.  There is a big reason to do this upgrade if you are using Windows 8 or Windows 8.1 and it has to do with the small screen resolution.  With Windows 10 you can run the apps from the
Windows Store without any issue. Also after the install and updates there is 5.12 GB of free space and that is without compressing the disk or any other tricks. With this Windows 10 is not a bad upgrade on the HP Mini 1000 1030NR.

Install Windows 8.1 on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Lenovo has made some great laptops and the ThinkPad X61 is no exception.  This is a laptop that will last a while so that got me wondering is you could install Windows 8.1 on a Lenovo ThinkPad X61 and the answer is yes.

For my test I installed Windows 8.1 Pro With Update 64 Bit.  You will need to either use an external USB optical drive or a flash drive may work too.  I did a clean install keeping nothing.

This will be an easy install and after running Windows Update all drivers will be installed.

Windows 8.1 on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 8.1 on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 8.1 performs very well on the Lenovo ThinkPad X61.  This is perfect for general business use but not suggested for gaming.  Below is the Windows Experience Index.

Windows 8 Experience Index on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 8 Experience Index on Lenovo ThinkPad X61

Windows 8.1 is great on the Lenovo ThinkPad X61 and if you still have one of these laptops I would highly suggest thinking about upgrading it.

Save Disk Space by using Disk Cleanup Part 2

Many newer computers and devices have only a little bit of hard drive space.  While the cloud helps with this you can also save disk space by using Disk Cleanup.  This is part 2 I highly suggest Compressing your Hard Drive first then using Disk Cleanup.

Just a reminder to back up your data if you have not already or not done it in a long time.  No one wants to lose anything.

Before you begin you will want to update Windows as Disk Cleanup deletes backed up system files from Windows updates and from performing a Windows upgrade (like from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1).

While Disk Cleanup has been part of Windows forever it will be most effective in updated versions of Windows 7 and later including Windows RT.  This will free up space in Windows XP and Windows Vista but is not able to remove the backed up Windows update files.

If you completed the steps in part 1 then bring up the Hard Drive Properties window again and click on Disk Cleanup.  If not then just click on Start and in the search box type in Cleanmgr.exe (Start and then Run in Windows XP or in Windows 8 and 8.1 Start and then just start typing as it will search automatically).  You can also try looking in Start, All Programs, Accessories, and then System Tools in the Start Menu.

If you have multiple hard drives you will want to select the one that Windows is installed on usually C: and then click OK, this will not come up if you open Disk Cleanup from the hard drive properties window.  Once you open Disk Cleanup it will take some time looking for temporary files to delete, just wait a bit till the main window pops up from there we will configure some settings.  Once the Disk Cleanup window has opened click on Clean Up System Files.  It will again scan for temporary files to delete but this time it will also look for other system temporary files and Windows update backups.

Disk Cleanup System Files

Disk Cleanup System Files

Once the Disk Cleanup window comes back up again you will want to click on a new tab called More Options.

Disk Cleanup More Options

Disk Cleanup More Options

Now from here click on Clean Up… under System Restore and Shadow Copies.  This will delete all but the most recent System Restore point.  Wait a second or two and then click on the Disk Cleanup tab again.  If nothing happens the system is still deleting old System Restore information wait a while longer and then try again.

Disk Cleanup System Restore and Shadow Copies Clean Up

Disk Cleanup System Restore and Shadow Copies Clean Up

Once you are back on the Disk Cleanup tab make sure all the check boxes are checked and then click on OK.  A dialogue box will come up and then click Delete Files.  It will take some time but these files will be deleted.  In part 3 we will tame System Restore permanently.

Save Disk Space by Compressing Your Hard Drive Part 1

Many newer computers and tablets that came out this holiday season have limited storage, sometimes as low as 16 GB hard drives.  Thankfully there are some tricks in Windows that will maximize your disk space and over the next few posts I will help show you how to put that disk on a diet.  First lets look at how to save disk space by compressing your hard drive.  This should work for just about all versions of Windows going way back (Windows 95 or 98 I believe) it is an old trick but it works. This also works in Windows RT.

Before you do any of these tricks I suggest you back up your data, I have had great success with these tricks but I would hate to see someone lose something that is important for any reason.

First start by opening up File Explorer (Windows Explorer) and click on This PC (My Computer) and then right-click on your hard drive (you may have more than one, Do this on the one that Windows is installed on).  Then click on Properties.

 

Hard Drive Properties

Hard Drive Properties

Once the Hard Drive Properties window opens you will want to check the box next to Compress This Drive To Save Disk Space and then click Apply. A Dialogue box will open asking you to confirm, make sure Apply Changes to drive Subfolders and Files is selected and then click OK.  You may have an error pop up just click on Ignore All.  Then sit back and wait as this will take some time to complete.  If your device runs on a battery plug it in as this can drain a battery fast.  It will take a while but it will free up a lot of space.

Compress Drive to Save Disk Space

Compress Drive to Save Disk Space

Once done I always suggest restarting your computer or device.  After that if you bring up the Hard Drive Properties window again you can click on Disk Cleanup for Part 2.

30 Days With Windows RT on a Microsoft Surface RT

This past Black Friday there were many great deals out there including some on the Microsoft Surface RT.  Both Best Buy and Microsoft had the 32Gb Surface RT on sale for around $200. No to mention I also saw it being sold with a touch cover for around $230 to $250 at other stores.  Well I had to jump on the chance to get one of these devices for many reasons if not for the fact that they are kind of a unique computing device.  So I picked one up from a Best Buy in Las Vegas and got a Type 2 Cover with it.  I know, I spent more than half of the total cost of the Surface RT on that Type 2 Cover but I think it was worth it.

After using this for a few days though I have to admit, I think this could replace my laptop almost full time.  Windows RT is just that good enough.  Of course it is also a year later so much has changed from a year ago and it does not hurt that Windows RT looks and works almost exactly like Windows 8, which I have used for over a year so I know a thing or two about it.  When I installed Windows 8 on my laptop it took me all of 10 minuets to know I could use that Windows operating system full-time, but without support for any desktop applications on windows RT can I really use the Surface RT like I use Windows 8 on my desktop and laptop?

So for the next 30 days I will only use the Microsoft Surface RT for my computing needs.  I will write many articles to help some of you out there that also picked up one of these devices and I will write about my usage every so often.  I think this will be an interesting month.

So for my first note about the Surface RT, I wrote this whole article on it using only the default touch on-screen keyboard.  Yeah its going to be an interesting month.  So make sure to subscribe to the blog, or follow Useful Windows on Facebook or Twitter and see how I do this month.

Microsoft Posts the Support Lifecycle for Windows 8.1, Windows 8 Users Have Two Years to Upgrade

I came across a page on Microsoft’s website about the Support Lifecycle for Windows 8.1 stating that “the lifecycle of Windows 8.1 will remain under the same lifecycle policy as Windows 8 with support ending 1/10/2023″.  This is interesting because it tells us that Microsoft really does consider Windows 8.1 just an update to Windows 8 and not a new version.   They state this later on the page that “Windows 8 customers will have two years to move to Windows 8.1 after the General Availability of the Windows 8.1 update to continue to remain supported under the Windows 8 lifecycle”.  So if you want to continue to get updates to Windows 8 you will have to upgrade to Windows 8.1 within two years after Windows 8.1 is released this October.  This is more in like with a service pack which is what Windows 8.1 basically is but it is a new way of doing service packs and really I like it.  You can read the support lifecycle for Windows 8.1 and check it out.

So the thing to remember, Windows 8.1 is not a new version of Windows, just an update to Windows 8, and the Support Lifecycle for Windows 8.1 is the same as Windows 8. I really feel like Microsoft is trying to avoid having another Windows Vista by not calling this update a service pack, which after getting this information Windows 8.1 is basically Windows 8 Service Pack 1, granted there are many user interface changes we usually do not see in service packs.  It will be interesting to see how this play out and if this helps the perception about Windows 8 and Microsoft.

Install Windows 8 or 8.1 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400M

Windows 8.1 Device Manager On HP Compaq DX2400

Windows 8.1 Device Manager On HP Compaq DX2400

You can install Windows 8 or 8.1 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400m  and it is in fact very easy.  We will look at how easy it is to install Windows 8 or 8.1 on the DX2400 and how it performs on there as well.  For this test I did a clean install of Windows 8.1 Pro 64 Bit (and also Windows 8 Enterprise 64 bit) but you could do an upgrade install from Windows 8 keeping you files, settings, and programs or an upgrade from Windows 7 keeping you files and settings but not your installed programs.  If you have Windows Vista or Windows XP on this machine you will have to either upgrade to Windows 7 or Windows 8 or just do a clean install, keeping nothing, like I did. (If you and installing
Windows 8 you can do and upgrade from Windows 7 keeping all your files, settings, and installed programs, from Windows Vista keeping your files and settings but not your installed programs, or from Windows XP keeping your files but not your settings or installed programs.) The Windows 8 install is just like the Windows 8.1 install on this machine. For the install I booted off of the Windows 8.1 Pro DVD and did a clean install.  After the computer restarted it ran well and once I connected it to the internet Windows 8.1 and Windows 8 automatically installed the graphic card and after that I had a clean device manager which is pictured to the right. Below is the PC Info in the new Modern Settings in Windows 8.1.

Windows 8.1 PC Info HP Compaq DX2400

Windows 8.1 PC Info HP Compaq DX2400

One of the things that was cut from Windows 8.1 was the Windows Experience Index so we no longer have that to compare the performance of the computer however I did post the Windows Experience Index from Windows 8 below.  I ran PassMark’s Performance Test which this computer scored a 143.9 in Windows 8.1 and a 153 in Windows 8 and I also ran Futuremark’s PCMark7 Basic which this computer scored a 1193 in Windows 8.1 and a 1216 in Windows 8. I believe these numbers show that Windows 8 is a little faster than Windows 8.1 because Microsoft is still testing the performance of Windows 8,1 and will issue an update or two before Windows 8,1 hits General Availability on October 18.

Windows 8 Experience Index on HP Compaq DX2400

Windows 8 Experience Index on HP Compaq DX2400

Windows 8.1 is not only a great upgrade to Windows 8 for usability but Windows 8.1 runs very well on this HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400M and I believe that Windows 8,1 performance will improve before October 18.  If there is anyone out there that is considering this upgrade should go for it.  It is very easy to install Windows 8 or 8.1 on HP Compaq DX2400 Microtower D2400M and it is recommended.

The Future of Computing is Touch!

I firmly believe the future of computing is touch, but will that include the PC?  I know a few people who think touch computing is just a fad like 3D TV and will be gone soon.  I however think touch computing is here to stay but I think it will happen one of two ways.

The PC will adapt to touch computing and continue being dominant.  This is what I hope will happen.  I hope that computers like what we use today like laptops and even desktops will embrace touch interfaces and we will have powerful machines that we can interact with touch.  Now the mouse and keyboard will not go away as the mouse is more precise especially when using video and audio or even image editing programs and you need a keyboard for programing but lets face it most people use their computers to check email and Facebook, or to play flash-based games.  I think this gives the all in one device we are looking for instead of having to have multiple devices to take with us when we travel.

The second way is similar to what we see today.  Basic tablets like the iPad, or Android tablets will replace most computers in the home because they meet the needs of people who just check email and Facebook.  Lets get real here, most people do not really need all the power in their computer all the time and could make by with just a basic tablet.  I mean these tablets are just big smartphones and people use smartphones all day long for similar functions.

Now Microsoft is trying to position itself to be ready no matter which scenario works out.  If normal PC’s go the route of touch than I expect to see Windows RT go by the way side but if these less powerful media tablets start winning the battle (like the iPad and Android tablets) then I expect to see Windows RT further developed into something to compete with these devices and probably no longer contain a Desktop.  While Windows 8.X (Or whatever version we are on to by this time) will keep the desktop and rely less on the modern environment.  We could then see Windows booting straight to Desktop and maybe not containing the Start Screen at some point.  Again this is all speculation and just what I see as I look in from the outside.

Either way touch screen devices are here to stay in the home, now seeing them in business uses we will have to wait and see.  I see either way working out long-term for the future of computing what I do not see is computers staying in their traditional configuration (non-touch) and being as dominant as they once were, not in the home.  Again this will be different in businesses but for the home market computing is changing and its future is touch.

Install Windows 8 on Samsung RV511

Samsung makes great laptops at great prices.  A friend of mine has one and Windows 7 has some issues and clearly needed to be reinstalled but he has talked about Windows 8 for a while so I told him I would let him use a copy of mine to check out.  Here is how to install Windows 8 on Samsung RV511.

It is very easy to install Windows 8 on Samsung RV511.  For this test I did a clean install keeping nothing but you could do an upgrade install keeping all your programs, files, and settings.  After the install was complete I ran Windows Update to install all updates.  I only had one driver missing for the Intel WiMax.  You can download the Intel Centrino WiMax 6250 Driver from Intel’s website.  Once you install that you should have a clean Device Manager.

Windows 8 Samsung RV511 System Properties and Device Manager

Windows 8 Samsung RV511 System Properties and Device Manager

So how does Windows 8 perform on the Samsung RV511, well actually really well.  Windows 8 just makes this machine up and makes it fly I really suggest the upgrade.  You can also install and use Hyper-V 3.0 on this machine making the upgrade very attractive.  I ran the PassMark Performance Test and this machine got a 652.8 and below you can see the Windows Experience Index.

Windows 8 Samsung RV511 Windows Experience Index

Windows 8 Samsung RV511 Windows Experience Index

This is one of those upgrades that is a no brainer.  I highly suggest you install Windows 8 on Samsung RV511 it makes a great machine even better.

 

Install Windows 8 on Dell Vostro 230 with Dell SX2210T Touchscreen Monitor

The Dell Vostro line of computers is great for business large and small and the Dell Vostro 230 is a great machine.  I had to wonder how it would work with Windows 8 especially since we also had a Dell SX2210T touchscreen monitor.  I use this computer almost every week and figured if I use Windows 8 at home on non touchscreen computers why not on this one as well.

It was easy to install Windows 8 on Dell Vostro 230 and I even got the Dell SX2210T Touchscreen Monitor working.  For the install I used Windows 8 Professional and did a clean install keeping nothing.  You can also do an upgrade from Windows 7 keeping your files, installed programs, and settings.  After Windows 8 was done installing the device manager was pretty clean except for the Dell SX2210T touchscreen.  So I first made sure that the computer was up to date using Windows Update. Then you will want to download the driver for the Dell SX2210T touchscreen.  This will download a Zip file, extract the file (right-click on it and click on Extract All) then in the extracted folder double click on dpinst64.exe this will install the driver needed for the Dell SX2210t Touchscreen Monitor.  Now using Windows 8 on the Dell SX2210T is ok there is no room to swipe in from the side to bring up the Charms Bar or any other experiences that have to be swiped in from the sides, top, or bottom as the bezel is too close to the screen. Other than that it is not bad and I like being able to reach out and touch the screen and have it respond.  This monitor will not replace a mouse and keyboard on this machine but it compliments it nicely.  So once you have the driver installed that is it you are done you should have a clean device manager.

Windows 8 Device Manager and System Properties on Dell Vostro 230

Windows 8 Device Manager and System Properties on Dell Vostro 230

Windows 8 runs very well on this Dell Vostro 230 and it is going to stay on here, I have noticed a speed increase over Windows 7.  Now you will not be able to install Client Side Hyper-V 3.0 on this machine as the processor does not support SLAT, I thought that the Intel E8400 did, if your Vostro 230 has a different processor then your mileage may very.  I did run the PassMark Performance Test and the Dell Vostro 230 got a 599 with Windows 8 installed on here.  Below you can look at the Windows Experience Index.

Windows 8 Experience Index on Dell Vostro 230

Windows 8 Experience Index on Dell Vostro 230

So my conclusion is you are thinking about an upgrade to Windows 8 on your Dell Vostro 230, go for it, you will love the performance.  If you have a Dell SX2210T monitor and want to use it with Windows 8 why not but I would not buy one just to use with Windows 8, I would look for something else that is going to allow you to swipe in from the edge of the scree.  Still it is pretty cool to have a touch screen desktop now. It was easy to install Windows 8 on Dell Vostro 230 with the Dell SX2210T Touchscreen Monitor and I do suggest the upgrade.