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The Netbook: Upgrade to Windows 7

I’m more than 2 months into the netbook experience, and I’m happy to report that it’s still a good investment.  Last weekend, I made the leap to Windows 7 RTM.  So far so good!

I was more than a little surprised to find out that there was no upgrade path from Windows XP to Windows 7.  Although there are a few free utilities that can help ease the pain by migrating user settings and documents, a move from XP to 7 will involve a completely new install.  That said, I’m usually not a fan of an OS upgrade anyway, since these tend to be less stable than a clean install in the long run.  Fortunately, I’ve not had this machine long, so it didn’t take long to back up all of my data for the reinstall.

The installation of the OS and reinstall of my apps took a good part of the afternoon.  Moving to an operating system 8 years newer, I expected a performance drag due to the additional overhead, but was pleasantly surprised at the snappiness of Windows 7 on the netbook.  I’ve noticed that I’m under a bit more memory pressure than I was with XP, but I’ve still got the standard 1gb of RAM installed (I can go up to 2gb on this model).  The battery life seemed to have diminished a bit, but after reinstalling the Toshiba power management software, it’s still in the neighborhood of 7 to 8 hours.

I’ve noticed that if I have SQL Server, SQL Server Management Studio and Visual Studio running at the same time, the CPU tends to run higher than normal.  I have a little more disk paging than before, most likely due to the memory pressure.  Overall, though, the jump to Windows 7 has been a positive move for me.

Tim Mitchell

Tim Mitchell is a business intelligence consultant, author, trainer, and Microsoft Data Platform MVP with over thirteen years of data management experience. He is the founder and principal of Tyleris Data Solutions.

Tim has spoken at international and local events including the SQL PASS Summit, SQLBits, SQL Connections, along with dozens of tech fests, code camps, and SQL Saturday events. He is coauthor of the book SSIS Design Patterns, and is a contributing author on MVP Deep Dives 2.

You can visit his website and blog at TimMitchell.net or follow him on Twitter at @Tim_Mitchell.


Posted by Steve Jones on 20 September 2009

Good to hear. As soon as I get drivers for my external VGA adapter on the HP Mini, I'll be moving as well.

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