My Asus laptop worked nicely, but I felt like trying Windows 8 on it. Said, and done. Windows 8 actually makes the laptop seem quicker, but it doesn’t perform as well in games.
I don’t know if it’s Microsoft's or AMD's fault, but at times the graphics card wouldn’t engage. The APU (my CPU can do GPU stuff with quite the performance) tries to keep up but obviously can’t keep up. When the card is in use, the crossfire solution gives me the strangest of errors, like black screens in 3D applications.
I’ve tried different drivers. The beta drivers available for download (somehow the non-beta drivers were harder to obtain) didn’t solve the issue, but at least it perform a little bit better. Still nowhere near Windows 7.
And for usability… every time I plugged in a screen via HDMI I had to do a hard reboot. The computer would simply not switch to the internal display again. An ordinary reboot didn’t work either.
So I decided to restore my laptop using those DVD images you get. Burning and restoring took an hour, which I thought was okay since we’re talking about 12GB of data. But of course that wasn’t the entire recovery...
Why ship an image when you can ship a complicated recovery system?
After removing the last DVD from the tray and rebooting, my laptop proceeded to configure itself. On occasion I would see a full Windows shell, with a text overlay of “… DO NOT OPERATE.”. I wonder what would’ve happened if I tried to mess things up at that point.
The amount of restarts needed in order for Asus to configure my system amazes me. And the time! Why did it take a couple of hours? Does it perform a full diagnostic as well? Installing Windows 7 from scratch would be faster.
But I was afraid doing so would leave me in the same graphics-broken state as before.
Aaaaaaand… done! All that remains now is to patch. This feels like the longest part. Slow download. Slow install. No automatic reboot. Slow shutdown. Slow boot. Done! More updates. And again. Done!
If you’re going to restore an Asus laptop, I’d recommend having at least 8 hours. It’s mostly an automated process and can be left unsupervised. The patching requires some clicking.
Time to check what gaming performance I’m getting now :3…