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  #1  
Old 03-16-2013, 11:43 AM
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McDougal McDougal is offline
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Default In Need of a Windows 7 PC

Hey all,

A friend of mine has a really old Compaq laptop with Vista Basic on it. The laptop constantly reboots....I can't even get into the OS. When I try to boot into an Ubuntu live CD it reboots as well, same thing with a Vista recovery disc. I think it's an internal hardware problem (maybe the motherboard?) that I cannot fix.

So, with that said, I may need to suggest a new computer. The problem is, they're not so good with technology, so Windows 8 is not an option.

Are there any places to buy a Windows 7 laptop for around $300-$400? Something basic for web browsing/word processing would be fine.

Thanks for the help !
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Old 03-16-2013, 12:17 PM
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This might work. It won't set any benchmark records, but should work fine for the basics...http://www.amazon.com/ASUS-A53U-AS21...3453815&sr=1-4
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Old 03-16-2013, 12:53 PM
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Have you tried to re-format the old PC with windows 7? its pretty easy to do. If it can actually handle windows vista then 7 will run on it, and 8 will run even better on it. I don't find windows 8 any more difficult to use than windows 7, it might actually be easier once you set it up with StartIsBack
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Old 03-16-2013, 01:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Syndrome View Post
Have you tried to re-format the old PC with windows 7? its pretty easy to do. If it can actually handle windows vista then 7 will run on it, and 8 will run even better on it. I don't find windows 8 any more difficult to use than windows 7, it might actually be easier once you set it up with StartIsBack
Windows 7 would probably work but the problem is they don't have a copy of Windows 7. And I'm not sure it would be legal for me to install my copy.

What makes me think it's a hardware problem though is I couldn't even boot into an Ubuntu live CD, so I'm worried that it will reboot in the middle of the Win7 installation. Getting a Windows 8 PC and buying Startisback would be another option.

@Marvin, that PC looks like it'll get the job done. Although I wish it would ship sooner (says 2-4 weeks shipping).
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Old 03-17-2013, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by McDougal View Post
Windows 7 would probably work but the problem is they don't have a copy of Windows 7. And I'm not sure it would be legal for me to install my copy.
You can legally use your windows 7 install disc to install a 30 day trial version of windows 7 onto any PC. Just skip the part where they ask for a CD key and then you get a 30 day counter. Its even possible to get up to 120 days of trial usage with a simple command line, but this would require resetting the trial timer 3 times at the 30 day mark. Why they have this feature, and why it allows you to go to 120 days is beyond me but the 30 days is atleast a nice way to test some new hardware before using up an OEM key which would otherwise bind itself to the motherboard that you first active it on.
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Old 03-16-2013, 06:08 PM
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Is there possibly a virus on it causing the constant re-boot? Maybe booting to a Linux-based A/V CD would find and correct it? This happend to me once (not the constant re-boot, but a virus no Windows-based A/V could find).
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tapeworm View Post
Is there possibly a virus on it causing the constant re-boot? Maybe booting to a Linux-based A/V CD would find and correct it? This happend to me once (not the constant re-boot, but a virus no Windows-based A/V could find).
It's a good idea but if you had read my entire post I said that I already tried an Ubuntu live CD. I boot into the CD, selected the language, and then the PC rebooted.

When I try Ultimate Boot CD, it works, but after a minute or so freezes up and I am forced to turn it off by the power button.

Sadly I think this means it's a hardware problem.
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:40 PM
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could just be the hdd. I personally have a few laptop hdd's kicking around so it would be easy for me to check. Message me if you plan on throwing it out. Maybe I could salvage some parts off of it.
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Old 03-16-2013, 07:54 PM
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Thanks for the offer but I'd prefer not to ship it out anywhere. Don't take it personally lol...I'd just prefer not to do it.

Hopefully I will be able to contact them tomorrow and decide whether or not to buy a new laptop. If we do buy a new one I will probably get the one Marvin suggested (unless I find a Windows 8 laptop that's cheaper, then I'll do that and get StartIsBack), and follow this tutorial to clean up the Windows 7 install.
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:04 PM
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Turns out they get special discounts from HP so we will be buying a laptop from HP. Haven't decided on which one yet, but if it's Windows 8 then I will setup StartIsBack.
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:38 PM
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Yeah, I can't stress how great StartIsBack really is. It only costs $1 for a licence(providing you buy 5 licences). And it makes windows 8 operate identical to windows 7 in most everyday tasks(browsing, word processing, media). The only thing that you are required to do that is different are the computer settings(power options, wifi networks, control panel, and such). But even those aren't that bad once you get used to them.
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Old 03-17-2013, 06:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Syndrome View Post
Yeah, I can't stress how great StartIsBack really is. It only costs $1 for a licence(providing you buy 5 licences). And it makes windows 8 operate identical to windows 7 in most everyday tasks(browsing, word processing, media). The only thing that you are required to do that is different are the computer settings(power options, wifi networks, control panel, and such). But even those aren't that bad once you get used to them.
I have it installed on my desktop now as a trial to test it out and I like it so far, better than Start8.

However I don't think I'll buy it myself because I've already adjusted to the Start screen. But from now on I will suggest getting a Windows 8 PC with StartIsBack instead of a Windows 7 PC to friends who ask for advice. Most of my friends are not tech-savvy and the Start screen would be hard to adjust to. But this is a perfect solution .
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