When a new operating system comes on the market it is logical to ask what features should have the PC to work well , which devices will work without the need to update and how much will be the available memory on the computer that ” host” the new system. The history of computing, and Windows in particular , has taught that all the new features introduced by the successive versions of an operating system involving a raising of the hardware requirements that , in most cases , require configurations well beyond the minimum specifications provided by the manufacturer . How to choose the right configuration for the new Windows , and what are the most interesting news that the system is ready to take on your computer?
These are the questions we will try to answer in the next few pages , analyzing the advanced features of Windows Vista Home Premium Edition.
As already explained in the special ” Windows … Vista ” , the purchase of a new computer to dedicate to Windows 8 provides substantially free from unpleasant surprises . In the case of computer or recycled from old Windows XP , we recommend Windows Vista.
Here in detail the features of the new operating system from Microsoft and all the tricks to overcome the little problems you may encounter when you decide to “abandon ” Windows XP.
View … under the microscope
A computer “brand ” is enough to pay attention to the presence of the label “Windows Vista Premium Ready PC” , which indicates full compatibility with the features of the new operating system, while still go carefully analyzed configurations connoted by the label “Designed for Windows XP – Windows Vista Capable “, which indicates a yes -compatible computer with the minimum specifications required by Windows Vista, but potentially not able to make it work better without intervention of updating the hardware configuration.
In front of a PC ” assembled ” it is necessary to verify that the configuration provides a fast enough processor , is equipped with a video accelerator fairly recent ( at least compatible with DirectX 9 and possibly equipped with 128 MB of Video RAM ) and, as we shall see, a substantial allocation of memory RAM.
Customizing the Taskbar
The processor Windows Vista is not so much the power of the central processor to make a difference. Although it is now used to indicate the effectiveness of its configuration citing GHz CPU , in fact, the new operating system can finally take advantage of the advanced features of other devices installed on your PC to improve its performance beyond the capability of the microprocessor itself. A rather old computer with a Pentium 4 on an old motherboard without PCI Express slot , is already able to run Windows Vista in an excellent way , despite the inability to install the latest generation graphics cards and multi-core processors : just follow some basic guidelines . The power of the central processor , it is good to specify this, however, is not a feature to be overlooked : get ” under the hood ” an efficient Core 2 Duo is obviously an advantage.
Yet Windows Vista behaves surprisingly well with slower CPUs , such as the old Pentium 4 2.4 GHz The important thing is that the computer can count on a good level graphics accelerator (at the moment you do not need the latest models from 700 € , not even for games) and able to take charge of all the operations related to the Windows Aero 3D interface view , the most obvious innovation among those introduced by Windows Vista. What matters is the RAM hardware The most important feature of the system, however, is the RAM. Windows Vista, contrary to what happened with the previous operating systems , is able to analyze with great care and efficiency of your work sessions and to ” prepare ” from the outset to make it more streamlined operations that accomplish more frequently, expanding and improving the concept of cache memory already introduced in previous versions of Windows. The cache allows a real decrease in startup time of applications that you have already used during the same work session : program data are , as far as possible , kept in memory for faster access to the next launch.
Energy saving settings in Windows Vista
The system , however, presents two problems : first , the cache is overwritten as soon as some other program requires memory , and operating systems in the past could not hardly ever rely on a sufficient amount of RAM , and secondly , once the computer is off the data will be lost , and the next reboot the system again without presenting any advantage in terms of speed . Already in Windows XP was introduced Windows Prefetch , a feature that can preload the file into memory and most used programs . This device has often proved of little benefit or even counterproductive to the overall performance of your computer, suggesting the creation of specific software for its deactivation. With Windows Vista , Windows prefetch achieves a real maturity and proves to be very reliable , as long as they can count on a generous amount of RAM memory. In essence, after analyzing your behavior, your computer can find the applications you use most often , so load them into system memory since the beginning of the computer.
It’s like if you could create a table that indicates to Windows Vista favorite programs or those most commonly used ( the e-mail program , browser, a photo editing program ) is exactly what makes Windows Prefetch , so invisible. Taking advantage of the available RAM at startup, Windows Vista accesses this list of “favorites” and copies immediately the basic code in memory, thus making it much faster startup programs you use most. A little ‘training Exactly as it is for the system to search for files and folders Desktop Search , before you can take full advantage of the features of Windows Prefetch Windows Vista must spend some session work to “learn”. It is therefore possible that the improvements in the responsiveness of the system become more apparent only after a few days of use, the time that Windows uses to determine what priority to give to the software that are started. In this sense it may even be advantageous to spend a few sessions to ” educate ” Windows Vista , opening the applications that you use more in the right order ( interposing , maybe , a few minutes between one and the other ) , resealing the bags and starting all over again.
In addition, it is necessary that Windows can count on a substantial amount of memory , however, because the way in which Windows Prefetch uses the RAM is and must remain absolutely secondary to the use for which the system memory is normally dedicated .
Customizing the Taskbar
It is for this reason that on computers with little RAM , Windows Prefetch can not really make a difference, because every program that will be open will inevitably overwrite the preloaded data .
Once again, therefore , the directions of the minimum configuration on the Windows package (512 Mb RAM ) are not very reliable : in order to exploit as befits the new caching system is necessary at least a gigabyte of RAM, but with quantitative still higher than that you will get the best performance. And if you upgrade the RAM is not easy, maybe because it forms a little ‘ dated are hard to find or because you are using a laptop ? No problem , Windows Prefetch can count on a valuable ally : ReadyBoost . The curious “expansion” external USB drives have now taken soppravvento on all other external storage devices . Much more efficient, comfortable and capable of any media disk (floppy, CD -ROM, DVD -ROM), are now available in very large memory sizes and affordable prices.
Windows Vista , thanks to ReadyBoost , is able to exploit the characteristics also to help to maintain the Windows Prefetch reactive preferred applications . In essence , thesystem uses the fast access time of the memory chips inserted into the splines ( very close to that typical of the internal memories ) to download from the main RAM memory own data preloading favorite software . It matters little whether in terms of pure speed transfer does not reach the heights of the fastest hard drives : fast access time is still a great advantage, and in any case the best memories USB 2.0 can go up to 30 megabytes / s, a speed more than enough to minimize the access time to frequently used applications .
Windows Vista unnecessary services
Added memory USB 2.0 ports in a system , it is sufficient to configure allotting a part to ReadyBoost so that Windows Vista and Windows Prefetch begin to use this particular memory expansion. Just the kind of data that the system will copy the external memory makes this solution efficient and totally secure : You can at any time remove the key without jeopardizing no data on the computer , since the only disadvantage that the operation entails is the slowdown in launching applications .
It is almost needless to point out how important it is ReadyBoost for those who want to install Windows Vista on a powerful laptop , but maybe from a limited amount of RAM is not exceptional , both for the inherent limitations of the configuration considered, both for the sometimes very high cost of the expansion modules dedicated . With few Euros you can buy a USB 2.0 external storage and a sprint give more to a PC that would otherwise be too fatigued by the presence of the new operating system , although of course we can not wait for miracles !