This is a very aggravating post to write. It’s a wonder I am sitting here and not in a mental hospital right now.
Let me offer some background. For the past few weeks, Laura’s computer has been showing the signs of hard drive failure. The computer is about 6 years old and has a 30Gb hard drive. It’s time to upgrade and get a new one. Last night, we ran out to Circuit City to pick one out. Upon looking at Circuit City’s selection, I was shocked to see about 95% of the computers now come with Windows Vista 64-bit. I asked the very new salesperson about that and he told me that’s the way they were coming now. Since I put my utmost trust in Microsoft, I figured that this is the way things were going to be and everything was going to work out fine. We picked out a HP Pavilion a6500f Desktop PC (KQ495AA#ABA).
When we got home, I started it up and did the things you do to a new computer. Then, I shut it down and put the old Linksys wireless card in and tried to run it. It didn’t work. I decided that I needed to find the Linksys 64-bit version of the adapter driver. Nope. No where to be found. Apparently Linksys hasn’t yet realized that this version of Windows is being sold to the masses. Oh well, I did some research and found that trying to find a wireless adapter for a 64-bit operating system is not all that easy. I finally narrowed my search down to a D-Link DWA-552 Xteme N Desktop Adapter. I chose this because it was available at Circuit City and the clock was ticking. We had work to do. We were now backed up a half-day. Also, the only reason I knew about this wireless adapter card was because I read about it on some forum discussing the issue. D-Link doesn’t officially support the 64-bit driver, yet they offer it. I had to download it from their website.
I ran up to Circuit City this morning to get the card, which wasn’t a problem. I came back and installed the card and had to call D-Link tech support for assistance installing the new driver. As I was on the phone with tech support, the computer froze. I restarted it (by physically pushing the on/off button) and continued to set up the driver. Everything set up fine without further event. I was able to connect to the network. Then, the computer froze again. I told tech support about this and she said there have been a few problems with this and I might need to update the BIOS. First of all, I don’t even know what a BIOS is, nor do I think I need to. It has nothing to do with my line of work. I tinkered with the computer for a few more hours and then called HP tech support. By the way, the computer kept freezing up (or crashing, whatever the difference is) about 25 more times during that few hours. It seemed to do it more when I was shutting down the computer and sometimes it got stuck on the welcome screen. The lady on the phone was nice and suggested that we burn some backup CDs and re-install the operating system. I told her thanks but no thanks. I really don’t think I will be re-installing the operating system of a 12 hour old computer. Seriously, this is not my problem.
I brought the computer back to Circuit City this afternoon and traded it for a less expensive (and slower) HP Pavilion A6400F Desktop PC. I just finished configuring it and (knock on wood) everything is good. It has the 32-bit version of Windows Vista. What a pain in the $%^&.
What is the moral of the story? Stay the hell away from Window Vista 64-bit, unless you want to sit there and try to get it to run. Can you imagine if I tried to install two things?