Beginners Guides: Downgrading Windows Vista Back To Windows XP
Want to get rid of Windows Vista? Discovered that none of the software (and even some hardware) you've been using for years is compatible? You're not alone.
Windows Vista has been out for a year and a half now, and public opinion is still fiercly divided. Those who purchased ultra-fast new computer systems may love it, but the rest of the public, especially those who upgraded an older PC from Windows XP to Windows Vista probably wish they never had.
It's possible to go back to Windows XP, though it may not be easy. Especially not if you purchased a new system with Windows Vista but now find yourself pining for the easy charms (and fast loading times) of Windows XP.
Why would anyone want to go back to Windows XP? Well, because it still works just fine.
After all, you know that Windows XP runs fast, and you know it likes the software applications you've already paid good money for. Windows Vista has a lot of new features, and may prove to be the better OS in the long run, but for right now, many, many users will be better served within the familiar confines of Windows XP.
First the unfortunate truth: There is no 'undo' button for getting rid of Windows Vista. Sadly, there is no easy way to go back to Windows XP as such. you'll either have to remove the entire operating system and start fresh with Windows XP, or do nothing at all.
Before PCSTATS gets into the nitty-gritty of preparing your computer for a Vista Exorcism, let's go over how to save your essential files, emails and contact information. Vista is going to be completely wiped off your computer forever, so you will need to preserve those precious bits of yourself that are already stored in the ill-fated OS.
If you've used Windows Mail in Vista and can't afford to be without your valuable email messages and contact info, here's how to back it up. Once backed up you can return it to Outlook Express or Windows Mail installed on Windows XP, for that matter.
Backing up E-Mail
Windows Vista stores all emails in the .eml file format at the location 'C:\Users\Username\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows Mail\ Local Folders' where 'Username' is the user name that you use in Windows Vista. You will have to enable the viewing of hidden files and folders to navigate to this location. To enable hidden file viewing, open any directory, then go to 'organize/folder and search settings' and click the 'view' tab. Enable the 'view hidden files and folders' option.
As you can see, the directories here mimic the various mail boxes in Windows Mail. Each contains multiple .eml files which correspond to individual email messages. Their names are not particularly revealing, so if you want to be picky about the messages you save, export the whole lot and delete the ones you don't want later. To export these messages to Windows XP, we simply need to copy the data onto removable media such as a USB drive or burn it to a CD. If you have a second hard disk or partition, you can also move the data to a folder there for safekeeping.