General Question

albert_e's avatar

Should I go for Windows XP or Windows 7 (Netbook)?

Asked by albert_e (529points) August 23rd, 2010

I currently have a Win XP laptop and I am pretty comfortable with it.

I am planning to buy a Netbook for use by my parents. I have the choice of Win XP (home) or Win 7 (starter).

Are there any disadvantages of sticking to Win XP?

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14 Answers

aniisback's avatar

Even i was initially confused with the same problem. But i happened to see a site with a good comparison technique. Just go through it and pick which categories you consider important and then arrive at a decision. This is the link.

albert_e's avatar

@aniisback Thanks for the link – it was very informative.

However, since I am looking at a Netbook which is primarily for email / web / chat and some basic word processing, having the very best cutting-edge performance is not that critical.

The concerns are – if I go for Win XP now…will it become obsolete soon? Will the new software / tools etc. – or new versions of existing tools—stop supporting Win XP in the near future?


jgalfer's avatar

My guess is that windows xp is on its way out in the next few years. it lasted as long as it did because windows vista was so terrible. windows 7 – i use it – and its really nice. very smooth. not sure why anyone would want xp at this point with 7 around. hope this helps.

Zyx's avatar

Go with XP and you can steal that bridge when you come to it.

Austinlad's avatar

XP is an okay choice, but I can say from personal experience you’re best off with 7 (faster, smaller footprint, I think). Either way, be sure to add another 1GB of ram (I think 2GB is the max for all netbooks) for better performance.

jaytkay's avatar

I would go with 7, more and more new software and hardware will stop working with XP.

Turn off the visual effects and it will run better. Instructions for that and other tweaks are here:

Ranimi23's avatar

I use win 7 and I can tell you it is the best OS microsoft ever done. No blue screen, no problems with connecting new hardware. I don’t see myself going back and use XP ever. But, the one thing is important, as @Austinlad said – RAM. I have 2GB on my laptop and 4G on my home computer. Both with WIN7. I also liked the simple installation.

aprilsimnel's avatar

Microsoft will support XP with necessary updates and all that until ~2012, last I heard.

whome's avatar

I concur w/ @Austinlad and @Ranimi23. muckysoft finally made an OS w/ Win7. I can’t believe I’m saying it but it works, it’s great, and I love it. Win7 is actually slimmed down though MS doesn’t tell you. A full version can run on netbooks just fine. Win7 Starter I hear is limited to only 3 apps running at a time, no more. I don’t have much experience w/ XP, soooo I think it looks nice but I wouldn’t trust the footprint or speed. Definantly do your homework and upgrade to 2gb ram (or up to 4 if the board accepts it, like I said, do the homework – check modding sites, deeply, for your make/model) no matter what OS you use. That said, the best OS is Linux, IMHO. Some people have put Haiku (BeOS replacement), Amiga, OpenSolaris, various BSD’s and even Mac, not to mention hundreds of Linux. To buy I’d only go with 1st Linux, 2nd Win7, 3rd any for the same specs and a LOW-LOW price then back up the original and install whatever I want. If nothing else, you already have an XP license so go for Win7 Starter, then you can have more experimenting room. and if you want special netbook versions of any OS go a’torrenting, just don’t say I sent you

whome's avatar

oh, another thing. I don’t know abour XP or Starter but Full Win7 has fantastic out of the box accessibilty tools that start up and run easily, and are very improved. I mean magnifier, screen reader, voice recognition, on screen keyboard, etc. But remember Starter has the 3 apps at once limit.
Yes, XP will not be supported much longer, just like 98SE eventually was purposelly left behind. With Linux though, you have the whole open source community giving it the cutting edge before Windows and Mac, lots of great commercial grade software, hardware drivers are a bit slow in release b/c they are created by the community after a product comes out b/c companies still bow to Windows and Mac. There are hundreds of distrobutions from reviving an old 386 to the bleeding edge and everything in between. There are many netbook specific distros like Jolicloud, various eee versions including an media center, plus Maemo (?) and Android. And all this is done by the community… for free! Available for free. (Well, not everything is free as in no cost but most is.)
As for the learning curve, honestly you could get away with the insult that it’s now like windows. but it’s better. That’s on the Gooey (GUI) side, for even more power one must use the command line (interface – CLI). this is like reverting to DOS usage (ahhh) but more complex, however, commands are written straught out in instructions online when you need them, otherwise you can do a lot w/o the CLI. I would assume if your parents are total puter noobs then the OS doesn’t matter – learning curve always necessary. If they aren’t noobs and like learning, then go for another OS. If they are noobs already squinishly on windows you could try to change them or decide just to not confuse them – go 7 Starter. But also look at Splashtop and, um, I think xpud? It’s a secondary OS, Linux, for super quick launch into surf, email, watch movies and listen to music. Asus now adds it on chip on all boards, branded as expressgate.
Sorry so talkative but I hope you have an even fuller view of options and narrowring of your specific needs and situation. :)

Andreas's avatar

Microsoft only supports Win XP Service Pack 3, as the oldest operating system. So in the next few years or so it will become an unsupported system by Microsoft.

Zyx's avatar

@aprilsimnel At which time the world will end, it all makes sense now.

flutherother's avatar

I use Windows 7 and really like it. It starts and closes much faster than previous versions and has good functionality for organising files so you can find documents etc quickly. I can’t say a bad word against it.

tomygreen's avatar

It depends on the notebook specifications. If it is a good device I recommendd you to take win 7.

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