Vostro 220/420 and Vista x64 - Microsoft OS Forum - Software & Operating Systems - Dell Community

Vostro 220/420 and Vista x64

Software & Operating Systems

Software & Operating Systems
Microsoft, Linux, Productivity software, discussion

Vostro 220/420 and Vista x64

This question is not answered

Why is there no support for 64-bit O/S on these machines?  The processors and chipsets are capable, but in the driver support section you will find only drivers for 32-bit XP and Vista. 

Has anyone installed Vista x64 on one of these?  Anything interesting or unusual happen?  What did you find regarding driver support?

It's sort of amazing that something like the 420 with four memory slots and quad processors can run only an obsolete 32 bit O/S.  What's Dell thinking?


All Replies
  • Yeah, for some reason Dell is behind the curve on going to 64 bit. I just got an XPS all-in-one, and had some kids in town install 64 bit Ultimate Vista. They put a bunch of drivers on it, but I'm looking around for the Dell Utilities, and I don't think they're on the computer. I know Dell does sell some 64 bit systems, so the 64 bit Diagnostics et al must exist, but haven't found it yet. So far the system is running flawlessly with 4 gigs of RAM.

  • Sorry but the 420 will run 64 bit. Alot the the drivers necessary for getting the system up and running are built into the 64 bit disks, You may very well only have to get the sound and video drivers. I think you need to back and recheck the 420 cause there is 64 bit drivers listed on the web site


    When i upgraged my 720 there were no 64 bit drivers on the web site but after the install the only drivers i needed were for the sound and video, and then those were pushed by windows updates. This is an added benifit of vista. Since all drivers require to be certified M$ can push them in windows updates. This was not the case with XP as it was not a good idea to use the drivers the M$ pushed.

    I cannot speak for the vostro but can off this check the 32 bit drivers listed. click on the driver and in the next page chech the compatability. Alot of them are also 64 bit compatable.

    Generally the chipset and SATA are again rolled up into the 64 bit disks. 

    Why Dell does not offer them is because they have not offically tested those systems with 64 bit and as a result have not released drivers.

     Home Built Sandy Bridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 GHz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 10 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • FYI, many of the drivers listed as "32-bit" for these machines are AIO types with 64-bit support included.  The exception in this case is the video driver which is 32-bit only.  There's a driver for the graphics chipset on Intel's site that I'm going to try.  If experience is any guide, it'll work fine. 

    Interestingly, my aging Inspiron 9400 notebook has a full set of x64 drivers for it.  It's running Vista Ult x64 right now with 4GB memory that Dell says it doesn't support.  Works just fine -- better than with XP, actually.  With XP there was a nagging bug of some sort that caused the clock to lose time at over 1 sec/minute.  Also, XP couldn't handle my add-on Linksys EC1000 gigabit card properly in standby.  Neither problem exists in Vista x64.

    Can't help you with the Dell utilities, never use 'em. 




  • Hi Dave,

    Yeah, as I said in my other reply, I discovered that many of the drivers listed for 32-bit are the AIO types with 64-bit versions included.  The reason I said 64-bit isn't supported is that in the Operating System dropdown of the driver download page, there's only 32-bit Vista listed for the 220 and 420.

    I totally agree about how well WU works with Vista.  But that sort of requires that you have the driver for the network available first!

    I'm gonna just go ahead and try the 64-bit setup.  At the worst, I'll have to start over again with the 32-bit, but I'm thinking that's pretty unlikely, given the 100% success rate I've experienced with 64-bit so far.



  • Following up on my own post...  Everything looks fine with Vista Ultimate x64 except for the Realtek NIC built onto the board.  It won't run at Gb speed, no matter what, including the latest driver driver directly from Realtek. 

    Also, you have to get the 64 bit graphics driver from Intel.

    The good news is that this is a very fast inexpensive machine.  WEI is 4.0, with the onboard graphics the limiting factor.  And those, by the way, score higher than an Nvidia 8600GT (3.8) on another machine here.  Processor (E7300), memory, disk all clock in at 5.9, not too shabby at all.  I'm impressed.

  • Are you using a gigabyte modem or router? My nic never ran at 1 gig untill I got the Linksys WRT600N with a 1 gig port.

     Home Built Sandy Bridge P8P67 i7 2600k @ 4.5 GHz 8gigs GSkill Ripjaws. Corsair 800D Case and AX1200 Ps X-Fi Titanium Fatal1ty pro PCIe Sound Card
    Dell Studio XPS 1645  Window 10 Pro

    Forum member since 2003

  • It's connected to a Cisco gigabit switch.  Everything else in the network is wired gigabit and works properly.  This computer is sitting on my lab workbench right now, where the lab computer normally sits, connected with the same 10' long manufactured Ethernet Cat5E cable that usually connects the lab computer.  That has an Intel CT 1000 NIC in it and has no problem running at the proper speed.  The problem is definitely inside the Vostro 220. 

    As I said elsewhere, I've tried every available driver with the same results.  There's no speed setting in BIOS settings, only enable/disable, so it's not a setting.  The other funny thing is that the interface takes a very long time to initialize.  There's a "mapped drives failed to connect" kind of warning at every boot.  They do eventually connect, but it takes something like 10-20 seconds from the time the network icon appears in the system tray.

    I'd bet a pizza that this is a BIOS issue.  This chip is used in huge quantities in hundreds of systems, including one non-Dell I happen to have running here also with Vista x64, so I KNOW that it can work correctly with Vista and the available drivers.

    I hope Dell picks up on this and gets moving on qualifying these for 64-bit operation.