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That’s it HP – You will not be my next PC

My last home PC was an HP (which is living a second extended life with a family member now) and my current home PC is an HP. In fact, so is my office PC and I even had an HP TouchPad. But my next will not be and it’s because of my current PC. It’s an HP Touchsmart 600. At the time I thought the novelty of a touchscreen in an all-in-one would, at some point, make a lot of sense. I liked that it was uncluttered. I liked tv in/out (something that’s mandatory for me for some odd psychological reason even though I rarely use it). I figured that having a 23” HD touchscreen would just work well for work and play. And it was fine in the beginning. But as expected it’s slow as molasses now and I don’t have much installed on it. The touch software they have is total crapware. And the DVD player has never opened with the physical button.  And don’t try to use touch on this touch screen – it’s about as accurate as using your elbow to type.  Too many of the paper specs ultimately didn’t perform as well in reality as they should have.

Bottom line is that there’s a simple solution we all know that’s $40 – install Windows 8. I was never able to get any of the preview versions to install. Online there are some possible ways to do it but the only solution is to do a clean install with a bios tweak in play. That’s pathetic. I figured the consumer release would fix this. Nope. I spent two days trying to install Windows 8 and I’ll end up spending at least one more. The solution (shy of a clean install) is a few different bios changes to see if any of them (which may result in losing WiFi and likely result in rolling back to older graphics drivers and disabling updates) work for me as results seem to vary.

But wait, I’m sure HP will support the PC they sold me right? No, they state they haven’t tried to upgrade this model (they have a shit-ton of models because of slight differences in configurations but really, they should be able to get to the common configs and know what works and if it fails why). In the end, there’s something unique to what they sold me. Something special (in a bad way) about its set up that fails the upgrade and there’s not a simple solution to it. And as far as I ‘m concerned, HP dropped me off and sped away. I can’t blame MS  – there are too many PC’s with varying configurations to get a 100% success rate. I gave most of my money to HP (MS just got a license fee) and I thought we were in it together.  We’re not. I’m on my own and since I’m going it alone, I’m finding a new pal for my next journey. It’s likely not for at least another year if I can get Win8 onto this thing, but with Windows 8 I’m all-in on all-in-one touchscreens like the Lenovo A720 (but that price tag is serious).

But what PC makers are firing on all cylinders these days?  What are you guys rocking?