The new Dell Studio 15 arrives

Today I just got my new Dell Studio 15. I always had meant to document what is was like using Ubuntu for the summer, but I never really got around to it. So what I'm going to do is document what it takes to get this Dell into a usable state. If something is really glaring, I will try and contrast it to Ubunto/Linux.

The machine came with a nice large stack of disks for reinstalling the OS/Drivers and anything else you can think of. It also had a little insert that instructed the user to head over to to update the existing files and drivers. So after turning on the machine and answering a couple of question and then waiting and waiting for the inital configuration, I point the browser to the support address. Now as many people have mentioned before, Vista has a really annoying habit about asking you before it does almost anything. And the Dell site in particular gets this message all of the time. Worse yet, after follow the instructions, you just get a list of a bunch of different drivers and programs. It doesn't even tell you which ones need to be updated. Huh? Score one for Linux on this one. Most programs are easily update via a simple command. I decided to skip this step for now.

This is not really a how to, but more of a reminder to me if I have to do this again.

Time elapsed: 40 minutes. Jeez.

Next time to install useful software and ditch some of useless MS programs.

  1. Download and install Firefox
  2. Install my favorite extensions: Firebug, Flashblock
  3. Download and install Thunderbird (not the greatest email program but better than some)
  4. Lightening extension for Thunderbird and provider_for_google. This does a real nice job of syncing up all of your calendars. I guess windows live supports this as well, but I am still trying to stay away from proprietary S/W when possible.
  5. Copy profile data from linux to vista. Vista puts things in an oddball place, but basically you copy ~/mozilla/.firefox/*.default to /home/{user}/AppData/Roaming/Mozilla/Firefox/Profiles. You then need to edit profile.ini to point to your mailbox. whew! For some reason my calandar didn't really come over correctly, so I had relink those with my Google calanders.
  6. Do the same for firefox.
That's it for today. 2 1/2 hours plus typing this list. Just for that!
  1. Install Stock Trading program - gotta be able to work tomorrow am!
  2. Install Backup/Restore Program
  3. Start Transfering Movies & Photos - I just let that run overnight.

That's it for now.

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