December 2nd, 2009

smile, Andrew

16? Geesh, where does time go??

Today Andrew turned 16 years old. As a result, I feel like I'm 92 years old! He's been wanting a laptop computer for his birthday, so his grandmother is going to take him to "Best Buy" when he gets in from school. I'll be going along as "technical advisor", to make sure he doesn't have my mom overspend. I've already asked him what he was mainly going to be using it for, and he said just watching online videos on YouTube, chatting, and browsing. For those rather lightweight uses, one $600 or less should be fine. Since the new machine will most likely be running Windows 7, it shouldn't need over 2 GB of RAM, because all reports say 7 is a lot "lighter weight" than Vista, which is the operating system on the PC I am typing this entry on.

He's not interested in computer gaming, since he has a PS3, and, as long as he stays out of trouble in school between now and Xmas, his grandmother has told him she'll get him the Xbox 360 he has also been wanting. Those two consoles should handle any game he would be interested in... he's shown no interest in any Wii games.

In other, completely unrelated news, the mom from "Family Ties", Meredith Baxter, has announced that she's a lesbian. Who woulda thunk??

Random "technical" question...

Okay, ever since first getting into computers, I've always relied on the factory "restore discs" when reformatting a computer. When I bought this computer early last year, I went ahead and bought a full version of Vista Home Premium to install over the version pre-loaded on it, to eliminate all the HP "crapware", using the product key on the Vista install disc.

My son is getting a laptop for his birthday today, and he's giving the "hand-me-down" computer I gave him last year back to me, which was also pre-loaded and reformatted with "restore discs" when I gave it to him, also running Vista Home Premium.

Thinking of reformatting it again, using it in the living room for webcam uploading, possibly watching some video on the big screen from time to time... to milk as much life out of the thing as I can.

My question, for my fellow "geeks" out there... can I use my existing full version of Vista Home Premium to format that older computer (to avoid the crapware HP puts on those restore discs), and just put in the product key that is on the sticker on the side of the computer case?? Bueller?? Bueller??