Vista RTM on my Toshiba M400: smooth update from RC2

During the last couple of weeks, I was still using Vista RC2 on my M400 since I was on a roadshow, with all my demos built on that pre-release version, and I did not want to run the risk of ending up without a demo machine in the middle of the tour after a potentially failed update…

So I waited until yesterday, when the tour was over, and tried the update from Vista Ultimate RC2 to RTM. The M400 is notorious for having had lots of driver problems during the Beta phase (RC1 was almost unusable on my machine, BSOD at least once a day), RC2 was really good though, lacking a bit of performance, but otherwise being perfectly usable. But of course you don’t run on pre-RTM bits forever. I was a bit worried whether I would have to re-install everything from scratch, since the update from RC2 was not officially supported (and our internal documents say explicitly “don’t do this on the M400”), and I’ve heard a few stories, esp. on the RAID driver killing a machine occasionally. After doing the necessary backups (data mostly, I did not use Windows Easy Transfer although I’ve heard it works quite well on Vista), I launched the setup from within my running RC2 installation, it went ahead, offered to update, and complained about a few incompatible apps (which you then have to uninstall, which is a nuisance because (a) this can fail, in which case you are not able to proceed with the install at all, and (b) you have to restart the setup, incl. entering the product key again). But after that it just started doing the usual thing (copying files, etc.), which took a loooong time (it correctly says “this may take a few hours to complete” which it did), and booted into the RTM version. Sweet! I had to manually install a lot of drivers, but now everything works fine (incl. biometrics, bluetooth, HDD protection, etc.). And I am happy. “Windows Experience Index” is 3.1, which is pretty low even compared to my 3-year old Inspiron 8600 (3.2), but is due to the Intel graphics chipset which is not for high-performance games etc. Aero Glass (incl. 3D Flip) work really well, though, so for business use it’s a great machine.

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