I purchased a laptop soon after this post. It was a HP Pavilion dv6253cl Notebook, pre-loaded with Windows Vista Home Premium Edition. This machine has 2 gig of RAM, 120 gig of hard disk space, and AMD Turion Dual Core processor. I bought it at Costco, 1000 bucks plus tax. It has a built-in card reader and webcam.
Vista is a huge disappointment. Here are a few problems I had:
1. A lot of device drivers are either not available, or do not work;
2. I am logged in as administrator, yet Vista repeatedly stops me from doing things I need to do, unless I confirm and click a Yes button. I heard it can be turned off, but I do not have time or too lazy to google it. It is a total waste of my time;
3. USB thumb drive does not work right. Sometimes I couldn’t even copy files from Vista to the USB drive;
4. I had trouble even moving files around. Granted, the files I move around are in the C: root folder or Program Files folders, but I AM AN ADMIN, let me do what needs to be done;
5. Little annoyances like I couldn’t sort files by type in my pictures folder. I am sure there are others, I just don’t remember now.
I’ve been thinking about moving off of Vista for the last couple of weeks. Today, I finally bit the bullet.
The first thing I tried is to load Ubuntu. Yes, currently I work primarily on the Windows platform, but I have strong interest in Linux. I reasoned I could use Linux virturalization software and create Windows virtual machines. I know there are people who use Mac with Parallel virturalization to run Windows on top, but Mac is too expensive for me.
I tried the latest Ubuntu, version 7.04. It actually didn’t start on the laptop, complaining some BIOS bug and firmware issues. Next I tried Ubuntu 6.01, an older version I happened to have. It didn’t start either. I was pretty disappointed.
Finally, I had to settle for Windows XP SP2. That cost more than half day. Now I almost have my system back. One big bummer is the built-in webcam is not working on XP. I do use the webcam with Skype, primarily for chatting with my family while on the road, so they can see me. It is a big plus, especially for my son. The webcam worked on Vista, but I would hate to go back to Vista just for that. Looking around for webcam drivers cost me at least 3 hours, to no avail!
The webcam driver issue seems to be a common one for HP Notebooks. HP doesn’t have the driver or the one it has don’t work. In fact, this afternoon I read tons of complaints with HP’s existing webcam drivers. I’d appreciate it if my readers have any leads on this.
Here is a note for myself, in case for whatever reason I need to rebuild XP SP2 on this laptop again. All links were obtained through HP’s web chat support.
Windows XP device driver links for HP Pavilion dv6253cl Notebook:
Broadcom Wireless LAN Driver:
HP Quick Launch Buttons:
Ricoh 5-in-1 Card Reader Driver:
NVIDIA GeForce Series Video Driver:
NVIDIA nForce Chipset Driver and Network Controller:
link for Microsoft UAA driver.
Here is the web link for audio drivers.
Here is the link for Webcam driver, but it did NOT work