By Thomas Krehbiel
· Krehbiel Tech · Sunday, Mar 15, 2009, 3:38 PM · 325 words · 5 comments ·
I recently upgraded my home computer to a 2.6GHz AMD Athlon X2 5050e with 4GB of memory. Parts for this upgrade, including a whole new case, motherboard and hard drive, cost about $350.
In the past, I’ve been an Intel guy, so this is my first big foray into the world of AMD. I made the switch because I built a system for my mother-in-law last year from an AMD processor, which was slightly cheaper, and I was pretty impressed with how it turned out. Mrs. Krehbiel also got a laptop last year with an AMD processor and it’s been working well, too. So I figured, why not?
As far as I can tell, there’s absolutely no reason not to get an AMD anymore. The days when software might not run quite right on AMD processors are long gone. It seems like the price difference between AMD and Intel is much smaller these days, too. So basically it’s a toss-up.
I also decided to install the 64-bit version of Vista. I keep hearing that it runs much better in 64-bit mode. I can’t say that I’ve seen a significant improvement, but it’s a little better.
Unfortunately, you’ll find that there is not very much native 64-bit software out there besides the operating system itself. Thankfully 32-bit software usually runs fine on Vista 64-bit, but it installs into a weird “Program Files (x86)” directory instead of the normal Program Files. The only software I’ve found so far that doesn’t run on 64-bit Vista is Peer Guardian and Taskbar Shuffle. (Taskix has a 64-bit version, though, and it works fine.)
As of this writing, there is still no Vista driver for my Microtek ScanMaker 4900, 32-bit or 64-bit. I have to keep it hooked up to an older computer.
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