Fixing Windows Vista on a Sony Vaio

Fixing Windows Vista on a Sony Vaio

Summary: Last month I had a chance to use a pair of Sony Vaio notebooks that together gave Windows Vista a terrible name. In this screenshot gallery, I’ll give you a close-up look at what I had to do to turn Sony’s messy, half-baked Windows installation into one that is worthy of their excellent hardware and that takes full advantage of the new features in Vista.


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  • Clicking any of the links in the Problem Reports and Solutions utility led to descriptions like the two shown here, which in turn led to downloadable driver and update packages. In each case, the hardware maker gets to decide where the link goes, which can lead to inconsistent experiences and some confusion.

    For the full story, see Fixing Windows Vista, one machine at a time.
  • To make it easier to organize drivers and updates, Sony has created its Download Taxi utility. After installing the small program, you click check boxes on Sony's support site to mark items for download as a batch. In this case, I've selected 21 updates.

    For the full story, see Fixing Windows Vista, one machine at a time.
  • Download Taxi displays all downloads in this listing (strangely, the window can't be resized to make the scroll bars vanish). Select each item in succession and use the Install button to apply it to the system.

    For the full story, see Fixing Windows Vista, one machine at a time.

Topics: Windows, Hardware, Operating Systems, Software

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  • Fixing Vista

    This was an absolutely fabulous,informative post!
  • RE: Sony

    This is why I build my own computers and install exactly what I want on it. If you have to rely on someone else to set up your computer for you, it will never be exactly what you want, because they set up all of the computer the same, and everyone is different. It is best to educate yourself so that you don't have to rely on anyone, because you will never be happy, and you won't know how to fix it.
  • Very WinMe like

    Windows ME got a lot of bad PR - most of it Microsoft couldn't recover from... but the root cause of all of the complaints was instability, sluggish performance, and resource usage.

    I had none of it with an actual copy of WinME. It's all the bloatware manufacturers were installing at the time. I never had a problem with Me or my current install of Vista - because I blew away IBM's image that loaded me up with Norton IS, a ton of extra apps, and junk that just ate memory like a fat kid eating cake.

    Running fast and stable... no thanks to the OEMs.
    • Exactly.

      I've been "cleaning" new systems for customers for years in my computer business. It's amazing what can be done with a new system when all of the garbage is uninstalled. Most of the time I don't have to do a clean install to get things working fine.

      Of course this curse isn't related to Vista only, XP has had the same types of issues since day one. Crapware. Heck just uninstalling Norton (or McAfee for that matter) usually makes machines run much better.
      • Eeeevil Norton's

        Removing Norton's Crap-Bloat-Evil-Crash-ware from your computer can help immensely! You wouldn't believe how much performance can improve just by removing that one Eeeevil piece of software. Hey, it's not that Norton's didn't USE to make a great product, it's just that they seem to have lost their way. I've had customers kill their laptop after installing Norton 360 because Norton's decided that the HAL.DLL was un-necessary and removed it... Think about that, now. This software REMOVES the HAL.DLL file from Windows\System32 and thus renders the machine un-bootable. Do a Google search for HAL.DLL missing and read some of the horror stories. Their customer support is about useless, and told me to contact a PC Support technician!
        • Removing HAL...

          Oy... So maybe they're thinking it's the HAL 9000 - the big bad evil computer from "2001: A Space Odyssey"...?


          I can just see the horror stories - and problems - by removing the Hardware Abstraction Layer... Gee.. That was awful brilliant of them. NOT!
  • RE: Fixing Windows VIsta One Machine At A Time

    Yes, The good news is that we can fix this problem, but the real news is that for most people, they will continue to experience Vista at its very worst!
    • Will the real please stand up?

      I don't know where to begin, but as the one and only I didn't post the original message. How can this be? I sure would like to know who is using my email address or how they make it appear that I posted the original message?
  • What a mess

    Sony has the worst track record when it comes to crapware, and their machines can cost at least twice (if not three times) the price of a new Dell or HP.


    hasta la Vista, bah-bie
  • RE: Sony

    I too had bought a lovely pink Sony laptop for my new computer- after going through so many hassles for months- just to get it to stay on my wireless network- I too purchased a MacBook. I have the glitch he referred to in his article about the wireless connecting, then disconnecting..reminded me of the 1970's when we had to wait for the modem to finally get through to get online! Sheesh!
    Great article, and thank you :)
    • correction in decade- 1980's heh :)

      I wanted to correct the decade I referred to- to the 1980's..
  • "Crapware ..."

    I too have spent many hours cleaning garbage off of "new" computers for family, friends and customers who bought assembly line machines.<br><br>
    I am appalled by the market-wide practice the major manufactures have of filling a new system full of <b>CRAP</b> that it barely runs, (one that you've paid hundreds to thousands of dollars for) just so they can collect advertising fees (from Symantec, AOL, etc) ...<bgr><br>
    I'm seriously considering starting a website/movement called <b>"Can the CRAPware"</b> to educate consumers and lobby the big companies to <i><b>"eliminate all third-party software that was not specifically requested by the consumer !!</b></i><br><br>
    BTW: By <i>'lobby the big companies'</i> I mean <b>"deluge them with signed petitions and emails from consumers fed up with this deliberately exploitive (potentially fraudulent) sabotage.</b>
  • Sounds like trying to remove malware

    "They" say the new Norton 2008 anti virus is supposed to be faster than the older junk. What's strange is I have Symantec Corporate Anti Virus on my Thinkpad and you hardly notice it.
  • RE: Sony

    Thanks for this article! I can only second the message and conclusions reached. And it will help me further.

    I have a new Sony Vaio TZ180N (Vista Business 6.0.6000, I think without SP1). It came with endless bloatware I didn't want or didn't need because I had other versions plus stuff I really abhor, like Symantec. I am not a professional geek but have had to become an amateur one, devoting days and days - actually weeks and weeks - to figuring out what's on it and getting the stuff off, cleaning the registry etc. (Symantec in particular NEVER leaves!) I didn't have the performance problems you report, but still ... Just transferring my old docs to the new pc is really enough of a challenge for me.

    I hope Sony is listening. I really really did not appreciate having to do all this work! I just want to use my pc.

    The author's idea for improving the Sony updates is a good one!
  • RE: Sony

    I bought a Viao FRV-37 a few years ago with XP. Same thing, but not quite as bad. Another Vista Ready lie?

    My Acer 5050 has XP now and the X1100 graphics are better than I thought. Frame rates are up 50% from when I got it with Vista Home installed (8gb)
  • RE: Sony

    Where do I go to download the SONYT Download Taxi Utility program that you guys are refering to
  • RE: Sony

    After 2 years of holding back from throwing my Vaio out my living room window, I'm done. I'm buying an Apple MacPro.