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Vista-loaded HP Laptop

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Hey there, I just bought a HP laptop dv6700 which (of course) came pre-loaded with Vista. I, however, do not want to use Vista, especially on a laptop, I've heard it basically kills battery life. Anyways, I have a copy of XP that I can put on it, but I am hesitant to do so, for fear of completely losing some of the usage of certain functions on the laptop, since I don't know how much (if any) may be Vista-specific. Anyone have any experience with wiping Vista-loaded HP laptops? Any help I can get would be much appreciated. Thanks.
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Here is some documentation from HP.

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well, first of I would like to do some myth busting. Vista equipped laptops do not generally use more batter life than their xp equipped counterparts. When vista was first released there were some issues. These were addressed by drivers, ms updates, and bios updates. By now, those issues are a thing of the past. To make sure your system is running optimal, be sure that Service Pack 1 for Vista is installed. You can do this by right clicking on Computer either from the start menu or on the desktop. You want to choose properties. Right at the top of the dialog box it will list your operating system, bit level, and service pack (if installed).

The rest of battery usage comes right down to how you use your laptop and what you want running. For example, I always shut down the Vista sidebar. I'm not interested in running any widgets, gadgets, ect. Your lcd screen consumes the most amount of power on your laptop. If your going to be working for extended times on your laptop, try turning down the brightness. IF your going to watch a dvd movie, then your going to only get abouty 2.5 hours of life. These doesn't seem to have changed over time.

The other option is to check your battery rating/life. 6 lithium ion cells or more and the more watt hours the better. I consider 85w/hr to be a pretty good batter.
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