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Even Softies get the Vista installation blues

This is one for all of you readers who've had trouble installing Windows Vista. Don't feel bad. Even some Microsoft developers -- who have the Vista team on premise -- can't manage to upgrade to Vista.

This is one for all of you readers who've had trouble installing Windows Vista. Don't feel bad. Even some Microsoft developers -- who have the Vista team on premise -- can't manage to upgrade to Vista.

Microsoft developer Andy Pennell wanted to install Vista at home. (Pennell is a developer on HDi, the interactivity layer for HD DVD.)

He bought a copy of Vista Ultimate. And then all hell broke loose -- as he blogged this week in a post entitled "Installing Vista: My Personal Hell." Trouble started for Pennell early, when he tried to get the media out of the new, curved Vista packaging:

"I was seriously considering a trip to the garage and to smash the box open with a hammer, when I discovered another transparent sticker that was holding two parts together. With that gone, the box moved a few more millimeters, until I realised the thing opens sideways, and boom: Vista was opened. I've installed entire operating systems more quickly and with less stress than opening this box..."

From there, things only got worse:

"Short story: installing Vista for me was a catalog of problems, some mine and some not. ... (Things) went downhill to include weekend-long unsuccessful installs, bricking my PC, and exercising my Dell warranty to get a replacement motherboard, hard-drive and secondary hard-drive. And after all that, guess what: I still haven't installed it."

Pennell's conclusions:

* "Vista cannot install to Dynamic discs (which is the default when you add a new drive to XP): switch them to Basic before attempting a Vista install

* "Only update your BIOS if you have good warranty cover on the motherboard, or are feeling lucky

* "Unplug memory card readers before installing

* "Dell's warranty and support organization rock

* "My particular hardware cannot install Vista, and no-one knows why."

Bring on Windows Seven!