Ugh, I just bought Lightroom 4 and to my horror, it is not comptatible with XP!!!
After the release of Vista, I swore to myself that I would stick with XP (which I really like) for as long as I can. Well after 12 years of faithful XP use, it looks like my travels have come to an end.
Now, mind you I am running a new system (AMD Phenom II X4 965, OC'ed to 3.8Ghz) DDR 3 memory, etc... but I have just resisted upgrading to Windows Vista (Gag! Yuck!), 7 or now even 8 for YEARS. (Call me a rebel...)
Well, that has come to a quick end with the purchase of Lightroom 4. Now, my question is, which is better? Windows 7 or 8? Any thoughts?
Do not assume that your new computer is fully Windows 8 compatible. They do not sell full versions of Windows 8, just upgrades. OK, there is a system builder edition, but its renamed because it assumes you are a professional system builder and test/debug your hardware with Windows 8 before going into production.
This is one time where just buying a new Dell XPS for $700 is a good idea if you want Windows 8.
Assuming your hardware will fully support it, get Windows 8. It is faster and has some features like support for larger hard drives, and GPT format. This is not trivial, you may have a tough time trying to make copies of a Windows 8 hard drive unless you upgrade other software. Readup on GPT format, you might not want to go there yet, but its coming sooner or later.
The good news is that you will be good for several more years.
As to the interface, just purchase Start 8 for $4.99 and get the old start menu back. A relative is a Microsoft Manager, and he uses it on all his pc's. If you do not have a touch monitor, you need the start menu.
Windows 7 is going to be easier to learn, because the interface is familiar. I have both. It took me 2-3 hours to become fairly proficient with Windows 8, but there are just some things that do not seem to make sense without a touch screen. You will find some software and some drivers that are not updated, and never will be.
Windows 7 is safe, lots of drivers now, but there will be older scanners, etc that are not supported, particularly with 64 bit. You do want 64 bit!!