Monday, February 1, 2016

Why I still prefer Windows XP

A few days ago I restored my laptop to Windows XP from a hard drive image I made before upgrading to Windows 10. As you know, I only upgraded so I could use Visual Studio and Office 2013. I prefer XP and here's a major reason why:

Above you can see I've set my SDRplay to the full 8 MHz of bandwidth. It's tuned to a Volmet upper-sideband weather report and there is no stutter. HDSDR reports only about 50% CPU usage. (Notice how overall usage is not ~100%, like Windows 10 would be?)

Fortunately, I also imaged the drive before going back to XP, so I have a Windows 10 drive image. After a nice break from Windows 10, I have to restore it so I can finish an app I'm working on in Visual Studio.

I restored my Windows 10 backup. Here in Windows 10 I've got HDSDR tuned to some RTTY on lower-sideband and it stutters incessantly. CPU usage is almost 100%. (If you click to zoom in, you can even see a strip of waterfall smear at the top where HDSDR froze.)

But maybe Windows 10 isn't really to blame. Maybe my laptop is just too old to hardware-accelerate all the visual styles, so it has to be done by the CPU. I would like to blame it on the background processes, but HDSDR itself is at nearly 100% CPU, and the overall CPU reading is only marginally higher. A newer computer should be able to run HDSDR with 8 MHz bandwidth without breaking a sweat, but there's no denying XP was a much leaner OS.


  1. First I want to say I really enjoy your blog. Now down to business :)
    Windows 10 is a complete resource hog. HDSDR will run on minimal spec machines. The higher the bandwidth it has to process the high the cpu will get pegged. All this you already know. Stick with XP. 10 talks to much.

    Keep on blogging

    1. Hey Mike, thanks for writing in. I fully agree that Windows 10 is a bloated mess. Did you see my Toshiba Encore review in which I explained why Windows 10 wasn't going on my tablet? I'd love to keep using XP on my laptop, but so much of what I need to do only runs on Windows 7-10.

  2. Yes I have read it. I find as of right now the best OS for using our SDRS is Windows 7. I have a Windows 8 Winbook tablet I use on and off with 2 of my SDRS and my main machine which is a Windows 7 unit that I run 5 SDRS off of.

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