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Laptop Reviews: The Neverending Saga

My trusty Vaio died last week.  I took it in to Dimension Computer because the hard drive was making whirring noises, and the power cord was not working so great.  The hard drive crashed when the were working on it (luckily they pulled the data), and the cost of fixing the power plug, the hard drive, and upgrading to what I wanted was almost a new laptop, so I decided to purchase a new one.

Off I went to the internet to look for new deals.  All I use the PC for is searching and the use of the Broadlook Eclipse software, so all I really needed was a cheap laptop with wireless capability.  I went with the Compaq440, a cheap model with a price tag of $499, pre-loaded with Windows Vista.

But there was a problem.

The Compaq 440 starts with 512 MB of RAM, which isn't quite enough to run the Vista Operating System.  So why would Best Buy sell it that way?  Even the Geek Squad doesn't know (and I asked).

That wasn't really the problem - I was going to upgrade to a full gig of ram anyway, but I preferred to run Windows XP instead of Vista.  The problem, is Windows XP is no longer supported, so trying to load Windows XP onto a machine that formerly had Vista is apparently a huge mistake.  Best Buy refuses to do it, and Dimension pointed out they could, but there are sometimes problems, and you don't know until you bring it in.

Who has that kind of time?  The solution?  I returned the Compaq Presario, with its sweet no-interest for 6 months deal, and purchased a more expensive used laptop computer without those problems, which hopefully I will have by tomorrow at noon. 

Thanks Best Buy.  You've completed my transition to a full Mac User from here on out.