NWA-PCUG Newsletter Article, April 2005
Updater Beware
by Robert Davis, NWA-PCUG
(click to email author)

Everyone knows the warning, "Buyer Beware". It has only been around since the Greeks (at a minimum; they might have been quoting some other culture with market experience).

This article is to say "Updater Beware". A saying that I should be fully acquainted with, seeing that I have been updating my own and other's computers since the 1980s. Suffice it to say, I got bit.

I recently upgraded my computer system from a 1.20Ghz Athlon with 1 Gbyte SDRAM memory and an NVIDIA FX5200 video card to a AMD XP29OO cpu, 1 Gbyte DDR 3200 memory and an NVIDIA FX5700SL video card.

All my programs and files were operating properly until I attempted to play a DVD. I started up "PowerDVD 5", and got a shock. There was a large black rectangle blocking all the displayed video (except the outer edges).

I then tried starting up my copy of "ULEAD's MovieFactory 3" software. (Those who were at the meeting when I demonstrated the program will recall that it has a hefty system requirement to run properly.) This program stuttered and hung as if I had gone DOWN in processor speed and memory.

Fortunately, I had a copy of "WinDVD" that had come with the FX5700SL video card. It is working with no problem.

I attempted to contact the companies that produce "PowerDVD" and "MovieFactory 3". The best recommendation they could come up with (after repeated e-mails) was to go BACK to the lower powered video card, or purchase one closer to the top of the line. Needless to say, I was not amused.

Since I am a fan of Sonic's RecordNow! software, I had noticed that they were selling a package called "MyDVD Studio Deluxe 6.1 for $70 ($50 off normal pricing). I sent off for it and was pleasantly surprised. It actually worked as advertised, and solved a problem I had with fitting films over 2 hours on a single DVD.

The gist of this article is for the upgrader to insure that ALL components and programs will work properly, or face unpleasant surprises like the ones I did.

(Addendum: I downloaded and installed the Microsoft 'Avalon' user interface beta software, as well as the 'Indigo' web services beta software. This action apparently re-wrote some corrupted code and I now can use my PowerDVD 5 and MovieFactory 3 software again. The only other option that would apparently fix this problem would be to have re-installed the operating system. I try to avoid this.)

Click here to return to top