Vista driver issues keep Dell Blu-ray laptop on WinXP

Dell's XPS M1710 notebook with a Blu-ray disc player is stuck on Windows XP until driver issues can be worked out, according to a Dell representative.

In December, Dell unveiled the flashy Blu-ray-equipped M1710 as part of its high-end XPS lineup, designed to cater to gamers, digital enthusiasts and those who believe Dell has no style. This laptop comes with all the bells and whistles available on laptops these days, including a 17-inch UXGA display, a powerful graphics card from Nvidia, and a Blu-ray DVD burner for watching and creating high-definition video.

But you can't get it with Windows Vista. "Right now, the best experience is delivered with Windows XP," the Dell representative said. Unspecified driver issues involving Dell's partners need to be rectified before the company will ship the laptop with Vista.

Dell does not create those drivers itself, it depends on partners to make third-party hardware such as optical disc players work with Vista, the representative said. And it involves more than the player itself, encompassing graphics technology and other enabling software. Driver issues with Nvidia's graphics cards have also kept Dell's XPS 710 desktop from moving ahead with Vista.

The XPS M1710 is one of the few consumer-designed PCs out there on the market that still comes with Windows XP. If home PC users aren't crazy about upgrading to Vista but want or need a new PC, they'll find few options among retail stores or at Dell's site.

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