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Turn Vista Home Premium To Ultimate Without Spending Extra Money

I am starting off a series of articles today to show you how to get the extra functionality of Windows Vista Ultimate without spending the outrageous cost of $399. In fact we are not going to spend one cent more in currency, the only thing we will have to spend is some time. Hopefully through this series you will be able to spend as little of your own time as necessary by using my easy to follow tutorials.

Before we begin, lets take a look at what Vista Ultimate offers that Home Premium does not. Here is a chart of features included in Ultimate that Home Premium lacks out of the box. Keep in mind that this refers to Pre-SP1. Throughout this series I will include additional SP1 information.

Windows Vista Ultimate Windows Home Premium
BitLocker Drive Encryption Not Included
Multilingual User Interface Not Included
Virtual PC Not Included
Remote Desktop Not Included
Complete Backup / Restore Not Included
Shadow Copy Backup Not Included
Offline Files and Folders Not Included
Encrypting File System Not Included

The list above is what Microsoft published as a guide to help the consumer choose the version of Vista that is right for them. Now, there are even more astonishing differences between Vista Home Basic vs Home Premium vs Business etc. I mean, why on earth would an OS not include everything on one edition? These features (or lack thereof) between each version are simply not worth the hundreds of dollars in price difference. To give you an idea of what topics will be covered in this series, check out this list of what we can add to make Home Premium as good if not BETTER than Vista Ultimate. This is ONLY a partial list.

Vista Ultimate Feature Free Solution
Complete Backup / Restore Seagate’s DiscWizard
Bitlocker Drive Encryption TrueCrypt
Virtual PC Virtual PC 2007 (free download)

Also, I am working on developing a stable work around for Vista Home Premium’s lack of ability to join a domain. Most home users probably wouldn’t utilize anything like this … but I love a challenge. So stick with me! Over the next days and weeks I will be covering some very cool information!

Disk Imaging:

Using DriveImage XML 

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 03/27/08

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