Encouraged by the success of my two test upgrades, I upgraded my main workstation to Win 7. It went pretty smoothly. I ran the Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor and found all the problem programs and drivers, and uninstalled or fixed them all. When I did the actual upgrade, the compatibility scan detected a problem that the W7UA hadn’t found: the Windows Mobile Device Center. Well, that was interesting. I’d had a problem with WMDC after the last upgrade, and had to remove it, but the compatibility scan hadn’t warned me then. What had changed? The Win 7 upgrade program, if you let it, updates itself from the web before running — you can see it restart. My guess is that in the few days between the last test upgrade and this one, Microsoft realized that WMDC was a problem, and fixed the compatibility scanner so that it flagged it.
I cancelled out of the upgrade, and removed WMDC and the associated driver update program using the Programs module in the control panel. When I tried the upgrade again, it flagged two drivers that I recognized as being associated with PDAs. I sighed, canceled out again, and went looking for the drivers. I couldn’t find them. They should have shown up in the device manager, but removing WMDC seemed to remove the tree branches to which they were attached. I said the heck with it and ran the upgrade anyway.
Two and a half hours later, I logged on to Win 7 for the first time. I verified basic function, then took a look at the error log. It was chock full of entries. I tried a few more things, with complete success. I did a restart, and took another look at the error log. This time there was only one new entry.
I let the machine run overnight and in the morning installed the 9 fixes it had found.
I plugged in a PDA to see what was going on with synching, now that WMDC was gone. The system recognized the PDA, automatically installed the driver, and, without asking me what I wanted, synched with Outlook. It even synched the desktop file folder with the one in the PDA, although it synched some files in the wrong direction, wiping out the newer ones (That was OK; I had backups on a flash card.). I went looking for the WMDC. It was in the control panel; it must have been installed by the upgrade. Also in the control panel, I found something called the Sync Center. The tooltip said “Sync files between your computer and network folders”, which didn’t sound right, but when I looked inside, I saw the PDA listed as a device. Anyhow, it all worked, if you ignore the wrong way synch. Actually, that’s designed in. Back in the ActiveSync days, you could specify that you wanted to mediate a conflict. Now, the only choices are: overwrite the files on the PDA, or overwrite the files on the desktop. This is a case where one size definitely doesn’t fit all, so I consider this omission a big step backwards.
I’m pretty much a happy camper. All the upgrades, including the last one, which was the only one that really counted, went well, as far as I can determine from limited usage.