Windows 7 or windows 8?

  palinka 13:32 06 Sep 2013

my sister still uses a desktop machine running Win XP,(bought in 2007). But she has had a windfall of 500 pounds and is talking of buying a new PC running Windows 8.

she uses her PC for email & family history, and that's about all. She is NOT into gaming nor into photography; but she spends more time playing the card games that come pre-loaded in XP than emailing .

Yes XP is rather elderly but perfectly adequate for her needs. I use Vista. I have no plans to move on to Win 8 or even Win 7.

I live 300 miles from her so am not on hand to help her with problems or advice about things that (inevitably )will be be new/different in a new OS

I think she is idiotic to plan to spend so much on something that will not improve her computing experience. She is not wealthy and will no doubt find other more pressing uses for that money within the next few months. As it happens I will be visiting her, briefly,in a couple of weeks time ,just for a weekend. I intend to investigate her present setup : clear out the junk&run a couple of AV programs to clean things up :She exchanges emails frequently with people who know even less than she does about computers, and no doubt have inadequate or well- out- of- date AV programs- or even none at all! so goodness knows what is lurking in her system at the moment. as far as I know she has no local, knowledgeable people to offer advice or to help when things go wrong

Any advice  please on  what  I should  advise her   re  a new OS.

I am inclined to think that after a clean-up she should continue with Win XP. any other views, please?

  Nontek 14:09 06 Sep 2013

I would advise that she stays with XP, IMHO is is still the best OS, though I am now using Win7 having bought a new laptop about a year ago. I regret not staying with XP, but have no interest in Win8 either.

I often help a friend living nearly 300 miles away, by using Teamviewer which I advise you to do the same, especially as you will be seeing your sister shortly enabling you to install Teamviewer on her PC. It really is very good and easy to use.


  Nontek 14:12 06 Sep 2013

PS - I suggest that you and your sister both use Skype as well, very useful to be able to talk to each other while using Teamviewer.

  Procrastinus 14:27 06 Sep 2013

As you will no doubt know, support for XP ends next year. But that does not mean that all XP systems will go 'poof'. That said, if she is really content with XP, I would do a fresh install having backed all her info up onto an external HDD (the same type and size as at present - IDE/SATA). Use something like this HDD USB Kit. I say an external HDD, because once all is safely running again in XP, you could check to see if her machine would be able to run Win7 Upgrade Advisor. If so, you could download a legal copy of Win7 from Microsoft, Win 7 Download, burn the .iso file to a dvd, swop the drives back and then install Win7 onto the spare. Then she can try it out! If she prefers it, buy a licence, if not swop back the drives over again and re-back up her XP data. Sounds a fiddle, but worth a try? Personally, I love Win7!

  Woolwell 14:27 06 Sep 2013

W8 is a big leap from XP. XP is no longer supported so if she is intent on buying something new then I would get W7 if possible.

The XP machine could be running quite slow. The browsers use more graphics and ram so you could well look at whether adding more ram could be a cost effective exercise.

  hastelloy 15:43 06 Sep 2013

I would agree with Nontek's advice as XP seems to meet all her needs. If she does want to change then it would be W7 for me - W8 is just too different and really designed for touch screens. I also use Teamviewer and would recommend it.

608's suggestion of an external backup is also very good advice.

  HenryF75 15:57 06 Sep 2013

Do not be scared of by the stuff written about windows 8. It does take a bit of getting used to but is a good operating system. Your sister would be happiest with a windows 8 machine booting in to the desktop, which can be achieved with a small piece of third party software such as Classic Shell. The update to 8.1 which comes in a couple of months will have that facility built in, though the full start menu will still require Classic Shell or something similar. I have been using 8 in this way for several months and am now finding myself using some of the apps on the Start Scree rather than the desktop. Like anything new there is a learning curve.

  Nontek 16:31 06 Sep 2013

As far as those who remind us that XP is no longer supported - so what! some people are still happily using Win98! XP will continue to work for many years yet!

  woodchip 16:32 06 Sep 2013

As above she would be netter to spend her money on anything bar a new PC There is nothing wrong with XP for normal use, everybody trying to put the frighteners up people about non support of xp after mid 2014

  palinka 14:42 07 Sep 2013

thanks very much everyone for all that useful advice.

Her current machine (bought new from Dell in 2007)has the following:- · AMD Athlon 64x2Dual Core processor3600+ · 250GB HD with 8MB cache · 1024MB 667Mhzdual channel DDR2 SDRAM

and the OS is XP.

She has MS office – tho probably uses only MSWord. Maybe only Word is installed, not the whole of Office –I can’t remember.

There are probably several photos saved on the HD - she receives them from friends. I could move those to disk for her.

And that’s about it. perhaps more RAM would help, but i'm not entirely convinced. she hasn't mentioned any problems/speed issues/anything else. she won't have heard about MS's plans for XP as you can probably work out from this, she is not a heavy user of this machine. i think it's simply that £500 is burning a hole in her pocket at the moment.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 16:47 07 Sep 2013

£500 is burning a hole in her pocket at the moment.

As you say she will probably find something more worth while to spend it on once its gone :0)

Sounds like the XP setup is adequate for her needs (I run an 8.5 yr old XP system and cannot really justify changing it) and perhaps a good cleanup (CCleaner) and make sure she runs something like AVast will keep her clear of nasties.

Looking at it the other way, sometimes if you just bank the windfall it just gets frittered away an you never seem to feel that you had anything from it.

A suggestion of, new shoes / handbag / clothes, may well steer her away from the thought of a new PC :0)

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