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Monday, August 24, 2009

I need technical assistance

UPDATE: The problem's been resolved with some help from Dina's IT group and the advice of some of my friends. Thanks for the help and input!

OK, technophiles out there, here’s an opportunity to help my wife and me out (involves XP and Vista).

We bought a new laptop for Dina a few months back. It works fine, but one of the main purposes Dina needs it for is to connect to her office with Remote Desktop. The problem is that her laptop has Vista and her work computer seems to be compatible only with Windows XP. (Her IT people have confirmed this, so it’s not just a matter of me guessing.)

Here are my questions:

  • Is there any trick to try to get around this (somehow making the Vista remote desktop connectivity act like/look like XP)?
  • Barring that, how difficult or expensive would it be to get XP on her laptop instead of Vista? Right now, other than Microsoft Office (which we have the disk for), there aren’t a lot of programs or files on the laptop.
  • With Windows 7 coming out, is there any chance that upgrading to that will fix the problem?

I’m stuck and frustrated over this. The whole idea was to get Dina something that would be a lot less hassle than the antique computer she’s been using, but it hasn’t worked out so far.

Thanks in advance.

5 comments:

Charles said...

Hi Rob. Based on the reviews of Windows 7, it's easier to connect to Networks, but I'm honestly not sure whether it'll be compatible with Windows XP. If you do go this route, Windows 7 will do a clean install, which means it'll be deleting everything in the hard drive.

Ben said...

Rob, try following the steps here:

http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/howdoi/?p=189

Ben said...

Alternately, install Ubuntu Linux on her antique machine -- Ubuntu tends to make older computers seem much, much faster than then they were running Windows, and I can personally attest to the user friendliness. Also, Ubuntu is free and comes with OpenOffice, which is MS-Office compatible. The only thing it really lacks is compatibility with Exchange Server (the thingie that makes Outlook's funkier features work).

I can connect to XP remotely from Ubuntu's "Terminal Server Client."

Eunanibus said...

* Is there any trick to try to get around this (somehow making the Vista remote desktop connectivity act like/look like XP)?

- There is always a trick, but trying to fool it to look otherwise would be more difficult than finding out what the compatability is between the two. Windows most likely wouldn't make this completely incompatible.

* Barring that, how difficult or expensive would it be to get XP on her laptop instead of Vista? Right now, other than Microsoft Office (which we have the disk for), there aren’t a lot of programs or files on the laptop.

-Easy as pie. XP is no longer monitored. By that I mean windows no longer cares about it (you don't need to buy it anymore, and no Product Key Codes are needed) - XP is free and easy to get, if you need more information I can show you how. Dead easy and you can put Office and anything else back on afterwards.

* With Windows 7 coming out, is there any chance that upgrading to that will fix the problem?

-Most likely yes. Windows 7 and Vista will be very compatible due to the same structured base programming.

Rob Rogers said...

A belated thanks for all the feedback, gentlemen. Dina's IT group ended up resolving the issue, but the advice we received was also very helpful. Muchas gracias!