Microsoft Latest Antivirus Solution

Amongst all the Windows 7 activity, you may have missed the news that Microsoft released their latest free consumer level anti-virus / anti-crapware solution, named Microsoft Security Essentials. I’ve started installing it on some consumer systems to see how it performs.

But it got me to thinking about prior antivirus offerings that Microsoft has released. So, I put together a short list.  Hmmm .. wonder what was going on in the years between1994 and 2003!

1993: MSAV – Microsoft Anti-Virus for DOS, originally developed by Central Point
1994: MWAV – Microsoft Anti-Virus for Windows, also developed by Central Point
2003: Microsoft purchases antivirus software from GeCad and Pelican
2005: Microsoft AntiSpyware – based on code from Giant Antispyware
2006: Windows Defender – Microsoft renamed Microsoft Antispyware to Windows Defender
2007: Windows Live OneCare
2009: MSE – Microsoft Security Essentials, codename Morrow

Upgrade to Windows 7 in 3 Easy Steps!

I have been testing and doing presentations on Windows 7 for over 6 months. With Windows 7 officially release, it was time for me to step up to the plate, and move my production workstation over to Windows 7. This is the same workstation that I wrote about two years ago when I made the switch from XP to Vista.

So last night I took the plunge and did an in-place upgrade (IPU) of my Vista Ultimate desktop to Windows 7 Ultimate. Yes, I know there are those who will say that a wipe and clean is the only way to do it (see my blog post about it). However, my experience is that there will be lot’s of people who will want (or need) to do an in-place upgrade, and the only way for me to give it a thumbs up or down was to do it myself.

OK, so how did the upgrade go for me? In one word — FANTASTIC! The in-place upgrade went smoothly. And all my favorite and important applications are running flawlessly. So, I can wholeheartedly recommend an IPU if all prerequisites are followed. Is a wipe and clean preferred? You betcha. But an IPU can be very successful.


System: Dell Optiplex 745 / 2.2Ghz Intel 6400 Core 2 / 4GB memory / 250GB primary C: drive

  1. Run Windows 7 Upgrade Advisor, and fix whatever is identified. For me, there were a couple of program and utilities (like iTunes) that needed to be uninstalled ahead of time.
  2. Backup your system. For me, I did a backup to my Windows Home Server, and I did a second backup using StorageCraft ShadowProtect. Why two backups? Because I firmly believe you can’t have enough backups!
  3. Upgrade to Windows 7. Since this was an in-place upgrade, you run the upgrade straight from Vista. Please note: the upgrade process will take several hours to complete.

P.S. You may find your upgrade process hanging up during the “Expanding Windows” phase. Apparently different things may or may not cause this, including a bad DVD. Some people suggest putting the Windows 7 installation DVD onto a thumbdrive, which I may try for my next upgrade,

Windows 7 Rocks!

Windows 7 – In Place Upgrade?

With the official release of Windows 7 just a day away, many will be asking: can or should I do an in-place upgrade (IPU) from Vista to Windows 7? Based on recent comments and feedbacks from many of my fellow MVP’s, I can summarize my answer as follows:

1. Everyone agrees that doing a clean reload of Windows 7 is always preferred over an in-place upgrade.
2. However, there is also a strong concensus that an in-place upgrade from Vista to Windows 7 works very, very well

Some words to the wise:

1. Be sure to do a full image backup of your system beforehand. Those of you with Windoes Home Server, that job is as easy as clicking a button.
2. If you take the first approach (reformat/reload), be sure to utilize the terrific Windows Easy Transfer (WET) utility and backup all your data files and user settings on your Vista computer first. WARNING: Be sure you use the version of WET that comes on the Windows 7 DVD, and not the one that’s already installed on your Vista system.

Windows 7 rocks!

WHS – Now ready for Business PrimeTime?

One of the knocks on Windows Home Server (WHS) is that it contains the word ‘Home’ in its name. If that issue has kept you from selling or installing WHS in businesses, then check out the news from HP — they have released WHS with a new name: HP StorageWorks X500 Data Vault

The equipment is almost identical to their HP MediaSmart Server models, except with a faster processor, and SKU’s with larger (1TB and 1.5TB drives) in them.

I install WHS in all my business client offices — even those with SBS servers. Are you?