My experiences Installing Vista at Home

I've upgraded my home computer from Windows XP sp2 to Vista, which you must have heard that Microsoft recently shipped. Things went great and I'm getting excited to be using Vista. I wanted to blog about my thoughts on the upgrade experience; and later I'll blog about my thoughts using Vista.

It took a very long time (about 3 hours), but it was mostly automatic. Basically, everything just worked. It was almost too easy! Some things I liked about the upgrade process:

  1. I just put the DVD in and it was running. No reboot and "boot from CD", "press F8 now" stuff.
  2. Although it took a long time, it at least issues little warnings which let me set my expectations accordingly. And it didn't require any user interaction during this long window.
  3. I loved the Compatibility Tool. Although my home computer is only a year old now, it's still nice to have assurance before hand that things will work. 
  4. The Upgrade worked perfectly and appeared to preserve everything. The user accounts, desktops, files, etc.  I'm paranoid about these sort of things, so I'm always happy when they work.
  5. Programs kept running. I'm aware of the VS2005 compat issues that Soma blogged about, and so I tried out VS and spun up a C# console app and started debugging it. All was good. And I made sure Civ 4 ran (The Vista compat tool didn't have any objections to Civ 4).

A few silly things that were inconvenient:

  1. The one freaky thing was long it took a long time after I entered the product key. It took ~5 minutes. Wow. I was worried it might have hung. I'm always very nervous with install programs because most of them suck. Too many install programs leave the machine in a hoarked state if they rudely exit half-way through. These same programs tend to crash half way through too. So I've gotten paranoid of installs and upgrades. I've never had these problems with Windows or Office, so you'd think I wouldn't be so paranoid by now...
  2. One annoying thing was that I couldn't "Upgrade" with multiple users logged on. So I had to back out of the Vista install and go log off the other users, and then get back to this point. It's going to reboot the computer anyways, so this seemed like an artificial constraint. I'm sure there's some great technical reason.

In the scope of things, this was nothing.

I had recently installed IE7 too, so with a new OS and browser, it felt like a fresh computer. I just need to get Office 2007 and the Civ4 expansion pack and it will be a full makeover.