My Mum recently purchased this low end HP laptop with model number HP15-d001sia that came pre-installed with windows 8 but performed poorly right off the box. Anytime you turned on the laptop, the operating system took ages to boot up and the when it finally booted up, the applications kept running slowly or freezing up. In fact, this laptop scored 2.0 on the windows performance index. I wouldn’t recommend getting this particular HP notebook model. After going through the embarrassing process of finding the drivers for this particular model of HP notebook, the next step was to upgrade the operating system from windows 8.0 to windows 8.1 as the drivers were designed for windows 8.1.

Okay, so in the process of upgrading to windows 8.1, Microsoft advised that we check for and install every update recommended by the update manager before we can upgrade to windows 8.1. I followed this advise and updated windows 8.0 with every update recommended. On completing the update process, I headed back to the windows store to commence the upgrade to windows 8.1 but the windows store app kept on loading continuously to no end. I visited the Microsoft website to see if there was an alternative way of upgrading the system.

I didn’t want to be a naughty boy and download the software from unauthorized sources as this was a free upgrade anyways.

On getting to Microsoft’s website, I found this handy utility that checks if your system has all the prerequisites for upgrading to windows 8.1. As it turns out, this shitty laptop failed to pass the test as the Windows 8.0 operating system that shipped with it was licenced using one of those volume licencing stuff, hence it wasn’t eligible for the free upgrade. So my options included:

  1. Buying a legitimate windows 8.1 Operating system from windows (Ain’t nobody got time for that).
  2. Buying a pirated copy of windows 8.1 from my brothers in Zone 3. This is actually a good option if you do not have the time and bandwidth to download directly from Microsoft. Besides, my “homies” in Zone 3 will hook you up with extra software goodies for nothing.
  3. Download a pirated version from your nearest torrent site.

I opted to go for the third option because I had the time and I thought I had the bandwidth, but on getting to my favorite torrent site, I discovered that the size of the software was between 3 GB – 4 GB. That was a problem because I only had 9 GB of my Spectranet bandwidth left for the rest of the month.

At this point, I started thinking of Linux. Most Linux OS installation files are between 700 MB to 1.5 GB. I settled on downloading Ubuntu because I felt it would be easier for my mum to use as she is completely new to using computers in general. She hasn’t used any other operating system before, so she can’t say windows is easier to use than Linux. In reality, windows 8.0 is even more difficult to navigate than most mordern Linux operating systems. All my Mum needs to do on her laptop is to browse the internet and occasionally type up some document.

After installing Ubuntu on her laptop, I had to install Microsoft office using wine (that’s another story altogether). Mum is now using her Ubuntu OS with no performance or driver related issues. I think she will love and use it just fine (fingers crossed).