"Downgrading" to XP

Discussion in 'Computing and Networks' started by Sparky49, Dec 11, 2012.

  1. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
    834
    417
    Hi guys,

    I've been thinking about doing this for a while now.

    I'm a bit irritated by every decent electronics program being made for XP and not Windows 7 which is what I use. Also, my mum and sister always seem to want to use the laptop when I could be doing some programming. :)

    So I was thinking about buying a dirt cheap desktop (got a monitor, keyboard and mouse) and using that for myself. I'm not even talking about a full sized one, perhaps something along these lines:

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Mini-Gami...t=UK_Computing_DesktopPCs&hash=item53f05615d8

    Maybe, maybe not.

    But I'm not entirely clued up on XP.

    I understand that alot of you guys still use XP, so perhaps you can help me with a few things?

    1. What do you use as virus protection? I would still like to connect to the internet, to download programs/datasheets/etc.

    2. Do you still go on the internet with XP?

    3. Any tips/advice for keeping it running as fast as possible, whilst still retaining good functionality (ie, not switching it on is not an option! ;))?

    Many thanks,

    Sparky
     
  2. Sparky49

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Jul 16, 2011
    834
    417
    Oh and 4: Where would you get XP from now?
     
  3. nerdegutta

    Moderator

    Dec 15, 2009
    2,513
    784
    For me:

    1. Avast -> http://www.avast.com/en-no/index
    Three months free/without registration. After three months, fill out online registration, and your done for the next year. All for free.

    2. Yes. Like a charm.

    3. I disable everything, including updates. I secure it via external firewall, and I use it very careful when on the net. I mostly use it for MPLAB, Codewarrior, PICAXE, and Google Sketchup.

    4. Don't know... :rolleyes:
     
  4. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
    2,428
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    I use Microsoft Security Essentials. It's free and does an excellent job--never let me down once.

    Anyway, as for running XP programs on 7, Windows 7 has a special setting where you can run programs in compatibility mode. If you set it to run the program with XP compatibility, it should still work. Most programs that work on XP work on 7. I don't know why you'd want to switch back--7 can do just about everything XP can, plus some. I wouldn't recommend downgrading, personally.

    I've used 7 for the past year and a half or 2 years now, and I've never had a problem. EVERY program I had running in XP works fine for Windows 7.

    As for speed, just make sure you've got enough RAM (2 gigs at the very least, preferably 3 or 4) and don't have a lot of windows open at once, and you'll be fine.

    So to summarize, don't downgrade. Stick with 7, just run in compatibility mode.

    That's my $0.02.

    Best wishes,
    Matt
     
  5. tshuck

    Well-Known Member

    Oct 18, 2012
    3,531
    675
    Except for Rollercoaster Tycoon! I rarely play games, but I wanted to play this game about a year ago only to find out that I can't! It's so sad.:(

    I've considered breaking out a dino just so I could play this game again...
     
  6. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
    2,428
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    Did you try running it in compatibility mode?
     
  7. tshuck

    Well-Known Member

    Oct 18, 2012
    3,531
    675
    Yeah.. there's just something about it that won't work.... There's a group of people trying to get this thing going, but no luck last I checked...:(

    Other than that, I'd agree, 7 is much better... Now, anytime I see an XP machine, I drag windows into the sides of the screen only to think that 7 spoils me.:)
     
  8. JohnInTX

    Moderator

    Jun 26, 2012
    2,340
    1,016
    Search Windows XP OEM on amazon.com for XP.

    I maintain a couple of old XP desktops for some older development and CAD software that won't run under 7 even w/compatibility mode.

    Norton Internet Security 2013 runs fine with them.
     
  9. K7GUH

    Member

    Jan 28, 2011
    191
    23
    On the face of it, XP is the most recent version of an operating system for the PC which has a high degree of reliability. At least, this seems to be the opinion of many / most of the XP users. I can't personally confirm this because until XP does me some dirt, I refuse to consider later versions of MS anything. To a certain extent, this is a lesson I learned from 37 years of fixing other people's broken computer programs. If versions of the operating system after XP have gained any popularity, I attribute that to a triumph of marketing over science. You can use any version of the MS operating system you might choose, but I claim to be the Grand Master Curmudgeon Emeritus, so if you want me to believe an operating system works properly, you have to show me. Otherwise, it is not worthy of my consideration. There may be one or two other people out there in the real world who share my opinion. May their tribe increase.
     
  10. MrChips

    Moderator

    Oct 2, 2009
    12,410
    3,353
    On another post somewhere I said I am using Win XP on all of my computers (except of course on the Mac, iPad and Linux computers) with an occasional fall back to Win 3.11 and DOS when required.
     
  11. vortmax

    Member

    Oct 10, 2012
    103
    18
    look up DOSbox. I just started playing simCity2000 again with it. Works like a charm
     
  12. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
    2,428
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    I was barely hit with MS's marketing techniques, and they had absolutely no effect on my purchasing a computer with Windows 7. I agree, Windows XP was an excellent operating system. I used it right up until about a year or two ago. The only problem I ever had with it was that it slowed down every now and then, and sometimes it was tricky to find the built-in features of the OS. Personally, I like to be able to modify my system to fit my needs, and face it, you can't do that very easily in XP. I got a laptop with Windows Vista, which I absolutely hated. There were so many bugs that it really turned me off to anything past XP. However, when I purchased my new laptop, I decided to get Windows 7 (I still have my XP machines--both laptop and desktop). After trying 7, I realized that I liked it a lot. It could do most of what XP could, plus some extra things like an easier-to-follow UI and a lot of built in functions. I liked it so much that I eventually installed Win7 Pro on my older laptop that had been running Vista. Don't get me wrong--I still love XP, but 7 works much better for most things. That's why it's my primary OS. I recently installed Windows 8 in a partition just because I was curious. It's slightly more difficult to navigate, but it is blazing fast compared to XP and 7!

    My point is, don't get turned off to other, future versions of operating systems just because of an experience with one of them. In my opinion, I still feel like Microsoft has a lot to offer, though I wish they'd set it up a little better. I suppose they're trying to follow in Apple's footsteps at the moment, trying to make the UI easier for laymen, but it makes it difficult for me, as an engineer. But I'm still willing to try new things, because you never know--they might come up with something good!

    One final note: There were people in the mid to late 90s who felt the same way about Windows 95 as you do now about XP. And look now--if they were as stuck up and unmovable on their opinions of 95, they would never have been able to try XP, which was worlds better than 95! My point is that you should keep an open mind to future innovations, rather than getting stuck on just a single OS.

    That's my $0.02. I hope you understand my point.

    Best wishes,
    Matt
     
  13. BillO

    Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
    985
    136
    XP SP3 is probably the most stable version of windows currently available. Sure, it is missing a few unimportant bells and whistles, but are you after operational reliability or imposed features?

    BTW, XP is more than 7 years old. By US law, it is in the public domain. Find an XP dist. somewhere and the key and enjoy.
     
  14. thatoneguy

    AAC Fanatic!

    Feb 19, 2009
    6,357
    718
    Win 7 Pro supports XP in a virtual machine. Not sure what version of Win 7 you have.
     
  15. panic mode

    Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2011
    1,318
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    where can this be verified? i was/am under impression that it takes much longer than that for product to be declared public domain.
     
  16. spinnaker

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 29, 2009
    4,866
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    You could also just have a dual boot PC.

    Many people use a virtual machine for browsing the internet. Probably a good idea.
     
    DerStrom8 likes this.
  17. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
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    Virtual machines are great for testing, but I don't recommend them for real work. Their features and operation are limited, so you won't be able to run it like a regular OS. If you have enough disk space, I highly recommend installing a partition and running a dual-boot setup, as mentioned above. I did that to run windows 7 and windows 8, and it works great.
     
  18. panic mode

    Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2011
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    hmmmm, a generalised statement.... what work, where did "it depends" go and what does it mean "like regular OS"?

    i agree the VMs may not be great for work if one works as lumber jack, violinist, waiter or taxi driver but i would say that the choice depends on case/application. what if the actual work is testing software for example? i must be doing something wrong because i use VMs all the time - for work! :D

    performancewise, i don't think there is a noticable difference between application installed on host or guest OS. modern VMs get you near native performance. yes the difference is measurable using a benchmark but makes no or little difference in actual use.

    the only problem is with 3D performance becuase virtualizing graphic card is not going to get near native performace of a hardware accelerator. this would be important for games or 3D software like SolidWorks. but at work i can't play games and not every job requires SolidWorks so in my case, i find VMs very useful.

    don't get me wrong, i also started by making dual or multiboot. at one point i used to have 5-6 bootable systems on each machine but requirement to reboot was very annoying. moreover for a lot of work, i need to be online with the process so it is not easy to justify reboot simply because some software happens to be installed elsewhere. using virtual machines solves this problem, it is much simpler, one can continue to work on something while waiting 15 sec for VM to start up. one can run more than one VM at a time, different OSs can pass data back and forth until desired outcome is achieved. with multiboot this could mean need for several reboots in worst case.

    as for VMs, I use both VirtualBox and VMware. first one is free (always a good thing), but the second one has smoother support for PnP hardware.
     
  19. DerStrom8

    Well-Known Member

    Feb 20, 2011
    2,428
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    Yes, that was a very general statement on my part. Allow me to specify by sharing my experience with Oracle VirtualBox:

    I installed the program about a year ago. In it, I installed Linux Mint. It was useful for small, simple things, like writing C programs to be executed by the terminal. I could have a few small, basic programs installed like Anjuta (also for programming), but other than that, it didn't have much usability. I wasn't able to run it as a full OS because it was only a virtual machine, which cannot run at full efficiency or capacity, as a real machine can.
    Several months ago, when Windows 8 first came out, I acquired it for VirtualBox. I ran it for a while, to test it out and see if I liked it enough to purchase it with my next computer. The virtual machine worked great for testing, but much of its functionality was limited by memory, graphics, etc of the virtual platform. A lot of the features didn't work properly (if at all). It wasn't until I purchased the full version for my real machine that I was able to use it to its full potential.

    The thing about VMs is that they are limited by the settings of the program, as well as by your computer. I suppose if you have a very (and I mean VERY) powerful real machine, you could adjust the settings of the virtual platform to run the VM in a manner similar to a regular real computer. But most people don't have machines like that.

    It is only my personal opinion, so you are welcome to disagree. I admit I am basing this solely on my own experience, and yours may be different. But virtual machines are generally not allowed to run at their full potential. If you only plan to run the basic programs and use the basic features (such as the text editor/programming setup in Linux), then VirtualBox (or whatever program you choose) is an excellent choice. It allows you to run an operating system within an operating system. But if you want to run an OS like you would with a machine on which that OS is installed, you probably should use a dual-boot setup instead. It'll allow full functionality, which VMs don't usually offer.
     
  20. panic mode

    Senior Member

    Oct 10, 2011
    1,318
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    no hard feeling, i just like to tease and nitpick ;-)

    running linux in VM was not much of a experience for me either but probably because i didn't go as far to install it in a VM, i was just running live CD within VM. but i installed windows xp as guest and it works very nicely, i can run ton of stuff. i usually allocate 2 or more cores to VM and enough of RAM and don't run AV in the VM.

    then it is no problem to run larger programs.
     
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