Hope everyone had a great break over the holidays. Its nice to come back to some great news such as the availability of Windows 7 Beta! The Beta was announced by Steve Ballmer at CES last week. It was initially available to TechNet Plus and MSDN Subscribers but it is now available to download for everyone. Performance, reliability, security, and compatibility are core tenets of this release as we collect your feedback to meet our engineering goals of making Windows 7 the best-performing and most stable Windows operating system to date. You can also learn about What’s New about Windows 7 at the official site. The new Desktop - amazing I have installed Windows 7 on 3 different machines and have to say I am really impressed with it. You will definitely notice the speed improvements. Startup and Shutdown times have been drastically improved. One of the first things you should do is install the new Windows Live Essentials software which include things like Messenger, Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Mail and other Windows Live services. Windows Taskbar Previews – easier way to see what’s open, this has really grown on me Here are some videos that give a good run down of the new OS Windows 7 – The Experience Windows 7 – Touch Windows 7 – HomeGroup Windows 7 – Device Stage Jump Lists – Handy way to get to files you have already been working on The TechNet Springboard site has some excellent resources for IT Professionals Windows 7 – A First Look for IT Pros Windows 7 – Feature Walkthroughs includes videos on Deployment Image Servicing and Management, AppLocker, Enterprise Application Compatibility, Problem Steps Recorder, BitLocker and BitLocker to Go and Windows PowerShell 2.0 Windows 7 TechNet Forums Libraries – New way to see your media in Explorer view
Something which was a nice surprise is the new Media Center experience in Windows 7. Check out Ben Reed from Microsoft doing the demo. You will also notice the new multi-touch capabilities in Windows 7 in this video. Stay tuned for more info about Windows 7!
<p>I've been testing Windows 7, great product, seems much faster and better and its good to see MS upping their game. Vista was the primary reason I moved my host OS to OSX, but I still run my customer configurations in Windows in a VM environment.</p>
<p>Thusfar, the only major issues I've noticed with Windows 7 is:</p>
<p>1. The fact that it doesn't allow for an upgrade path from XP. While MS hasn't said it won't provide one, it hasn't said it will. If this is the case, it could be the dumbest thing I've ever seen MS do, after all, with 70% of their customer base on XP, its unlikely to promote customer movement to Windows 7 if they are forced to do a complete reinstall (with all their software). A large number of customers (my wife included) would simply say, thanks, but no thanks, its too much effort. </p>
<p>2. The second major issue I've noticed is the inherent problem of Windows grinding to a half the moment any software or anti-virus updates happen. I did a comparison on my VM with XP vs Windows 7, and Windows 7 was far quicker on startup, but after a couple of sessions, I suddenly had to wait almost 4 minutes before Windows became remotely usable because the Windows update and Virus update were happening and brought the machine to a grinding halt...not exactly awe inspiring.</p>
<p>@Athol Thanks for your feedback, really appreciate it. Have you posted your issues on the Windows 7 TechNet Forums? <a rel="nofollow" target="_new" href="http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en/category/w7itpro/">http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en/category/w7itpro/</a> Please do</p>