By Suzann Dodd, Contributor
WHAT I like about XP is that it prevents the amalgamation of previous Windows products which results in the plethora of problems caused by incompatibility.
On a computer loaded with pure Windows '95, NT, '98, or 2000 one is pretty certain of the crash meisters and can avert them. Computers can be made to run relatively quickly and the resources, that is memory, can be controlled. When one loads '98 on top of '95 no one can predict exactly how badly the computer will operate.
I have always advised starting from a virtually virgin hard-drive and loading - destroying the old in the process but ending up with a undiluted version of the newer 'whatever'.
A friend of mine decided to load 2000 and '98 on a computer and what happened is too gruesome to recount.
As soon as I cleared it up by loading XP, destroying both previous versions in the process, all the problems were solved, except for the drivers, so I had to use Linux to go to Microsoft, get the drivers onto a floppy, go back to XP and load them.
I could have loaded '98 and may still do so, depending on what kind of grief XP has in store for me, but the point is, there is no way a computer will run efficiently with all the bits and pieces of previous debacles lying around the battlefield.
Too many people make the mistake of treating versions as updates and winding up with computers that run slower than 486 machines on their best days.
I have always, even from the days of DOS, had a trusty 'D' drive. Some computers are partitioned, so that you will have everything loaded in 'C' and a blank or nearly empty 'D' drive for other things.
Always think of your harddrive as a 'pie' able to be divided. Many people have created 'E' and 'F' drives as well. The one in my office goes up to 'G'. This is to allow other programs to co-exist.
Everyone I know who uses Linux will load a Windows version into the 'C' drive, then their Linux into the 'D' so that they can jump back and forth.
If I did not have my trusty Linux in the D drive I would not have been able to download the drivers needed by XP to find the modem. I mean, how can you download if your modem can't be found?