The Reinstallation Diaries Episode II: Up And Running: On To SP2
After checking out several methods of reinstallation and recovery and getting a good reinstallation, it was time to check out the basics.
I was an early M200 adopter getting one the first month they were on the market. To tell you the truth, I had already forgotten a lot about that original install and the original Tablet OS. So, once I had things up and running I thought I would give everything a once over. Everything was in place and working fine. You don’t really appreciate the differences SP2 makes in the Tablet OS until you go back to the original.
One thing I have noticed as I’ve followed many of the new Tablet owners like Eric Mack is the rising chorus of disdain at the amount of crapware (I think Eric coined that term) that comes preinstalled and comes back like a bad penny if you use the recovery disk to restore the original image. I’ve also read many posts on Tablet PC Buzz wherein new owners are shocked to see the number of running processes when they first boot up their new Tablet. Many of these processes are what makes a Tablet PC a Tablet and shouldn't be removed. Some can.
With those thoughts in mind, I thought I’d give things a look. Boy was I surprised. Most folks these days report around 70 running processes when they open up Task Manager and they are chewing up quite a bit of memory. After uninstalling a few things (Config Free and Sensiva being the only things that impact memory) and before installing anything else I discovered only 46 running processes using 164M of memory. I chalk that up to the fact that I did get an early M200 and the initial install (and thus the recovery disk) didn’t include much of the crapware.
With everything in working order, I discovered a few more surprises. I anticipated having to recalibrate the pen. Didn’t need to. It was spot on. I also anticipated having difficulties getting the wireless to work, as I recall this being the case when I first got the M200. No problems. Hooked right up.
Now, at this point I came to a fork in a road. When I have done this in the past (not just on the Tablet but with other computers) I usually throw all of the anti-virus, anti-spyware, anti-adware programs on at this point. I had been contemplating this fork in the road for awhile as a part of looking at other security solutions. So, throwing caution to the wind, I decided to hold off.
The next step then was to reinstall XPS2. I had gotten a copy on CD so I popped it in to the Sony drive and off it went. Zero problems with the install and after the requisite reboot, all looked good.
For those keeping score on the running process count, after SP2 there were now 48 running processes using 200M of memory.
Now it was time to do the inevitable Windows Update process. Let me just say this, five trips to Windows update to get everything updated are a few trips too many. Makes you wonder just how many trips something like this will take before we have a release of Longhorn.
Now, with SP2 installed and things looking good, I thought I’d put things through a few paces with inking. If you recall in the first episode I mentioned that I had a disastrous first attempt with SP2 when it was released. This time the experience was just the opposite.
Now, you are probably thinking this is because it was a clean install of SP2 on top of a clean original OS. But, I did that same thing back last year. A pleasant surprise of this reinstallation is that the inking is smoother, and the recognition appears to be more accurate. I was not displeased with what I had before; in fact, I thought it was doing quite well. But, it is definitely better this time around. Why? No clue. This held true even after installing the latest Wacom drivers after SP2. Bonus.
Next Up: Security Concerns and Reinstalling Key Apps.