|Have you tried installing and running the Autocad program in Vista in 2000 or XP compatibilty mode?|
You may be able to run it without the huge fuss of having to install another operating system.
If you can't get it to run in Vista no matter what you try, only THEN you have a need to install 2000, or XP if it will run in it.
You don't have to wipe the drive and install 2000 first if you have only one drive, or install 2000 first any case - see 1. below, and 2. below, in the latter part, starting at - Vista can shrink....
The following is what I've found while reloading a friend's system with XP MCE 2005 and Vista Premium.
Where I have XP the same applies to 2000.
1. It's relatively easy to dual boot XP and Vista, even if they're on different hard drives and were loaded on those drives by themselves, and there are free programs available that make tweaking that easy. However, by default whenever you boot XP, ALL the accumulated System Restore restore points are lost in Vista, every time you boot XP (or 2000). That was a bonehead thing for Microsoft to not fix before they released Vista.
If you don't want to lose the Vista System Restore restore points every time you boot XP (or 2000)............
There is no Microsoft fix. There are Microsoft suggested workarounds, but some are only available if you have a Vista Ultimate or a Vista Business version (most people are using Vista Home Basic or Vista Home Premium because they're cheaper - brand name systems usually have Home Basic or Home Premium on them), and there is Microsoft suggested registry tweak you can do in Vista, if you don't have the Ultimate or Business version of Vista, but not every program you can load in Vista is compatible with that tweak, and in that case you have to undo the registry tweak at least temporarily, and then you lose the Vista restore points anyway.
The best solution, if you don't have the Ultimate or Business version of Vista, is to use a third party multi-boot boot manager program that can HIDE the Vista partition from the XP installation while booting XP, then the Vista restore points are NOT deleted.
I tried Partition Magic 8.0's Boot Magic program - it works, but it does not enable a mouse to select the operating system with (that was required for the disabled person that owns the computer) . I searched and found several boot manager programs with mouse support, that support booting Vista - some free - most will work with a USB mouse if Legacy USB or similar is enabled in the mboards's bios Setup. I found a site that says many of these don't support the Hibernate feature for mboards in Vista properly, but otherwise they work fine. I tried one free Linux based one - could not get it to work - not enough help info came with it or available online.
I tried BootIt! New Generation - it works fine andit DOES support the Hibernate feature for mboards in Vista properly, but it's $35 US after 30 days. The ones you pay for are about $25 and up. It's install program is only 8xx kb and easily fits on a boot floppy, or you can make a bootable CD - it's nice to know someone is still making programs that are not bloatware. It includes a simple partition manipulation program that you can create, resize, move, delete, copy, merge, etc. partitions with. It has lots of help in the program and online, but you do have to find out how to do some stuff manually (e.g. enable it to HIDE the Vista partition from the XP installation while booting XP), so it's not suitable for someone who's clueless.
(If you need more info about using BooIt! NG, PM me).
2. Vista doesn't make NTFS partitions 100% the same way as XP and previous OSs do. It starts the first one a bit farther into the hard drive (rather than at sector 64) , and it can leave unallocated sectors between multiple partitions on a drive. Part of the reason for that is to accommodate new hard drives that will be using larger than the 512 byte sectors they've been using up till now, in the future I assume. It also has bugs in a certain standard file associated with the master boot record.
This results in - to fix the bugs in the standard file -
- Partition Magic and some other older partition manipulation programs that are not Vista ready or similar don't recognize the Vista NTFS partitions as being valid.
Partition Magic sees the partition type as ??? and as completely filled, whether it is or not.
If the first NTFS partition on a hard drive was made by Vista, Partition Magic won't even load and generates an error code (in my case it was on the second partition).
You can cure that by running chkdsk /r from XP, by booting with the XP CD and using the Recovery Console option, and checking the partition Vista has been installed on, then Partition Magic etc. see the partition normally, however that can take several hours - running chkdsk /r takes a lot longer than running chkdsk /f - you can't run the latter in the Recovery Console.
OR if you're starting from scratch you can make all the partitions with something other than Vista, instead of using Vista to do that - in which case such programs will recognize the partitions normally. Vista recognizes partitions made with older programs and OSs (Win 98 and up) fine.
- even after you have run chkdsk /r from XP, Vista can see and access the XP NTFS partition, but XP can't show or access the Vista partition (at least, the one Vista's Windows was installed on) in My Computer or Windows Explorer - it does show up in XP in Disk Management but as an unknown partition type. If you want to be able to exchange files both ways between XP and Vista Windows partitions, you need to make at least one other partition that doesn't have Windows Vista on it that both OSs can see, and place files you want to share on that.
- Vista can shrink (resize it smaller) an existing partition, so you can use the unallocated space then made available to make more than one partition on a drive without losing the data on the one(s) that already have data, but if you alter the partition with something other than Vista or a 100% Vista compatible program, Vista may no longer work at all and has to be re-loaded from scratch. It is also dicey to copy a Vista made partition - it can be done but you have to look up how to do it properly online.
4. Vista can recognize and access computers on a local network, or partitions on the same computer with ME or previous OSs on them, but you can't access Vista over the network from the other operating system, so you have one way network access. Setting up a local network, so far, appears to be a lot more complicated than in XP and 2000.
5. When in Safe mode, more things are disabled in Vista than is the case with XP and 2000. E.g. Windows Explorer has nothing in it in Safe Mode except documents.
6. Vista can be repaired but the programs and procedures are different than in 2000 and XP, and all the major ones require you have the Vista DVD disk to boot the computer with. I can easily see it would be a problem if you bought a brand name preloaded computer with Vista on it that doesn't have the Vista DVD included, which is usually the case unless you order the system onlineand buy the DVD at the same time, a lot more so that for 2000 and XP.
7. Some versions of Vista come with the right to downgrade to XP free, but only the more expensive versions - the Ultimate and Business versions.
8. All the versions of Vista are on every Vista DVD. You can upgrade to a higher version without having to buy another DVD, by going online and paying an additional fee.
The Product Keys for each version use different rules, so you get a new Product Key as well.
However, because of that capability
- you can't "slipstream" drivers or service packs the same way you can with 2000 or XP - it can be done other ways, however.
9. If the Vista DVD doesn't have the SP1 updates included, Windows Update eventually provides the SP1 updates package and installs it, but only after a lot of updates labelled "Important" have been installed.
Once the SP1 updates have been installed, you can't use the "Repair install" method of repairing your existing Vista installation with the Vista DVD without losing the data on the partition Vista's Windows is on, if the original DVD doesn't have SP1 updates on it - you have to make yourself a "slipstreamed" DVD that has the SP1 updates included.
10. Good things about Vista?
- Setup installs it in less than 30 minutes (on her computer) , with very little user input required.
- it has lots of drivers built in, more so than ever before.
- no matter where you install it the partition Vista's Windows is installed on sees itself as being installed on the C: logical partition. 2000 and XP, on the other hand, will use a drive letter other than C in certain circumstances .
- it has the ability to tailor itself to the capabilities of your system and perform better than standard if the components are good enough to support that. All systems have a "Score" rating of 1.0 when Setup has finished (when you install Vista from a regular DVD). You can have Vista rate the components of the system to see if that Score can be increased.
e.g. I did that for my friend's system and it's is now rated at an overall Score of 5.3. All of or most of the more fancy features of Vista that were originally disabled were automatically enabled. And that's with the two SATA drives running in IDE compatibility mode - 133mb/sec max, instead of SATA mode, 300mbps max.
- the TV application in Vista's Media Center seems to work better than the one in MCE 2005.
- Microsoft has not provided any new support for XP MCE versions for a long while - you often have to find info on third party sites when you have an XP MCE Media Center problem - they do have current support for Vista's Media Center, and so do some third party sites.