OS: Windows 7 Beta v7000 from TechNet
1. Microsoft Office 2007 Ultimate
2. Free AVG V8
3. Adone Reader V9, Flash v10,0,12,36, Shockwave
4. Java v 184.108.40.206
5. Propalms ClntMgr Version 6.0
6. Windows Live Messenger Beta
7. Zune V3.01
1. Installation: I placed the DVD in the drive while in Vista and started the install from there. I selected a clean install. Completed in 24 minutes with no difficulties. Additional 12 minutes for configurations. After installation, I checked the Device Manager in the Control Panel, all devices were correctly identified and were functional. Windows 7 even correctly identified my new Dell 23" LCD and correctly set the screen resolution to 2048x1152.
Frankly, this is the cleanest and best Windows installation experience I have ever had.
2. Program Installations: all programs installed themselves in a normal fashion with no difficulties or extra steps. With 1 exception, all programs functioned as expected after installation. The single exception was the Netscreen Remote VPN client which failed to install the driver. This was not unexpected as the incompetents at Netscreen can't do anything correctly. They took nearly 1 year to build a remote client that works with Vista. I suspect that I can get this app working by editing the registry if I work on it.
3. It is necessary to install a few updates and especially make sure that the update at KB961367 available at http://www.microsoft...&displaylang=en is installed before doing anything with MP3 music files. Some Beta users reported corruption of MP3 files. This download will keep that from happening.
4. The Zune installation went smoothly and my Music Library was located. Music and Music Videos played as normal in Zune and Windows Media Player 12.
5. The Vista Sidebar is different in this install. No preset sidebar gadgets. Some sidebar gadgets work normaly, some do not function (weather.com) I will do more with this later.
6. The venerable Quick Launch is gone. This area just to the right of the Start Button is a user favorite and I am not sure how I like what was put in its place. In the first Picture attached below you will see the Start Button with 4 large icons to the right. The first 3 are there by default: IE, Library Folders, and Windows Media Player 12. They can be removed. The 4th icon is Outlook and it is there because it is open. Each program you open will appear in that manner. You can Pin additional programs to the task bar as you did in quick launch but they will appear as large icons. I will have to live with this one a while before I know if it is a "hate it" item.
7. In the 2nd Picture, I have the mouse pointed at the Internet Explorer logo and it displays an image of the dbstalk page that I have open. This happens for any program icon on the task bar.
8. In the third picture you see what happens when you have multiple tabs or Windows open for a program. In the example pictured, I have 3 tabs open in Internet Explore... note the image of the icon has 3 blue IE "stacked" on each other. When you mouse over you get an image of each page... hold the mouse over the page and it will appear on the screen full size, move it away and it disappears from the full screen and click on it and it opens.
8. The Libraries folder is the new Windows Explorer.. this is a fairly major change area and will deserve its own posting at a later time.
Overall, the PC is quite "snappy" and feels much faster than its previous Vista version, though I can't quantify it, and most clean installs are always snappy at first so time will tell. Programs open quickly. The computer is extremely responsive.
Another note... Chat rooms have always been a Java nightmare for me and others. They will inexplicably lockup and crash, especially when you have more than 1 chat open at a time. Many have experienced it. On Friday night during the CE, I had 2 chat rooms open for over 5 hours... not so much as a hiccup in Internet Explorer 8 & Windows 7. Again this is just one night and it could be a fluke but I want to ask... did Windows 7 fix Java?
My impression of the OS so far is very favorable, overall I like it and I am not having any real difficulties figuring out how things work.
For those of you who would like to set up a dual boot machine with Windows 7, PM me with your email address and I will be happy to forward instructions on how to do it for both XP and Vista.
Microsoft's free Virtual PC 2007 is another way you can run 2 operating systems on one PC for testing purposes.
Edited by LarryFlowers, 10 January 2009 - 08:46 AM.