When I installed Vista, I was disappointed to see that my Windows Experience Index was 1.0 I was disappointed because I have a pretty decent machine:
- HP XW6000 Workstation
- 2 x 2.8 GHz P4 processor
- 1 GB DDR 266Mhz RAM
- 2 x 750GB SATA drives
- nVidia 980XGL video card with 128 MB ram & dual DVI output
It looks like I fell behind times in video cards department and I felt that this was a good time to catch up. So, I did some research. As always, Tom's Hardware Guide on graphic cards was pretty useful.
I ended up ordering an AGP 8x, ATI Radeon GDDR3 X800 XT with 256 MB ram from TigerDirect.com for $168 (I checked again now and they are not selling it anymore, maybe I got the last one :). It's all-in-one card, although I am not currently planning to use its TV capture capabilities.
I received in just two days. When I installed it though, my machine did not boot, all I was hearing was 2 long beeps. I put back the old card and got on internet to talk to HP. They simply told me that
- "ATI Radeon X800 XT card is not tested on xw6000 and is not supported".
In fact, HP guy told me that there was a problem between it and the motherboard but I kept on asking questions and he confessed that he was not sure of that and suggested I try the *newest* BIOS which was 2 years old and I was already running that.
I started tinkering with BIOS settings and one setting got my eye "AGP Aperture Size". It was set to 64MB. I did not know what it was for but when I saw someone mentioning it to fix a video card issue (not ATI), I realized that I had to change it to 256MB = what my new card had & voila!
To my surprise, Vista detected the card and installed the driver for it. Then, I checked my Windows Experience Index again: 4.3
This time, it was my 1Gig memory that was taking me down but hey, I have all the bells and whistles of Aero now :) I am quite disappointed with Doom 3 though, it looks better but not way better...
BTW, to see your Windows Experience index, do the followings:
Start > Run
Lastly, I wrote about BlackBerry on Vista yesterday. I checked the device in the morning and as expected it was fully charged.