The Vista upgrade on my Dell Inspiron 6400 went pretty well in the end. I took the time to update the system BIOS first as advised by the Vista Upgrade Advisor, and also downloaded the Vista drivers from the Dell website before I started.
The upgrade itself was fine, no errors or problems whatsoever. After the upgrade I had to repeat the reinstallation of AVG Free 7.5 as with my earlier test upgrades. Another application that needed updated was Daemon Tools. Downloading the latest version (4.08 at the time of this writing) fixes the incompatibility. I’d recommend removing or upgrading Daemon Tools first, as the installation of 4.08 after the Vista upgrade required a couple of reboots to remove the non-functioning earlier version and get the new one on.
After a few hours of poking around Vista I went to install Office 2007 and found my optical drive (NEC-6650A DVD+/-RW) didn’t work. I tried a few reboots, tried uninstalling the device in Device Manager and letting it detect again, but still it wouldn’t work. Eventually I found this KB article on the Microsoft website. This solution worked perfectly first time, although only one of the two registry keys mentioned in the article were present on my laptop.
All systems go.