Windows Vista- Day 4 On the Alien Planet

I have to say, now that most things are working, my opinion of Vista has improved loads.

Its the little details that I appreciate now. How taskbar items light up when you hover over them, for example

Windows Live installed perfectly on its fifth try, so I’m using Writer to type this.

Norton LiveUpdate works like a charm.

Windows update works well. I like the fact that Update is integrated within Vista instead of having a website to get all the optional stuff from.

My Gmail Notifier works like a charm.

The Windows Home Server Console does not work ( can’t log me in).

The SageTv Client works fine as well.

The Console itself installed fine ( I installed it before installing anything else, including updates), but can’t open my shares. Backup, strangely, works fine.

And accessing my shares is a pain. I have to use the IP address instead of the Computer Name. Which means I have to change the IP address on my media library every time it changes. At least till I get the DHCP Add-In working again( last time I tried, my PC’s refused to connect to the Internet).

So. how did I get this far after my frustrating first 2 days with Vista?

I tried everything to get the laptop networking working again. Scott Hanselman had a post a few week back entitled: The Nuclear Option: Resetting The Crap Out Of Your Network Adapters in Vista

This is for when “Diagnose and Repair” isn’t cutting it. Thanks to JohnP for his help.

  • Go to the Start Menu, type cmd and right click, and select “Run As Administrator”
  • Type the following commands, each followed by pressing enter.
    • ipconfig /flushdns
    • nbtstat -R
    • nbtstat -RR
    • netsh int reset all
    • netsh int ip reset
    • netsh winsock reset

Now, reboot and pray. Possibly not in that order.

I tried this in vain, twice. Clearly something was wrong since none of the above list of applications were able to access the Internet or local network.

So I went one better: I re-installed Vista from scratch. Now granted, it might seem like overkill to sort out a few networking issues, but those very networking issues prevented me from using my laptop to its full potential. This is because the use the network is such that we might as well not have the computer/network-enabled-device if we can’t use the network to its full.

The install was surprisingly quick and easy. And everything ran like a swizz car from there.

The one thing to note is that my Console and Shares( via the WHS Connector)  were working fine before any updates were installed. In other words, I could type in \\SERVER and my shares would come up. Currently I have to type in the IP address. So I’m pretty sure that an update is the culprit. though I have neither the time nor the patience to rollback each one to find out which it is.

All that aside, the Dell Inspiron 6400 is a very nice machine. It keeps up with everything quite well. And it has up to 7 hours of battery time ( if you select the power saver plan). It has media keys  on the edge that left you control Windows Media Player from  the keyboard, which is nifty. The really good thing is that its not ablaze with advertising stickers like some laptops I’ve seen lately.

In the final analysis, I’m really starting to like Vista after spending several hours with it reading 1000+ RSS items this afternoon(Google Reader subscribers will know what I mean).

So its back to writing software and salvaging erratic ship dates.