August 6

Some of us are going to be busy come the day. Apparently, the English versions of Windows 7 RTM will appear on MSDN and TechNet servers. Just like November 17 2006, we will all be pressing F5 to refresh the download pages, eager to get the final version installed onto our systems.

Then comes the tedious job of installing our supporting software, MS Office, anti-virus solutions etc. Then importing PST files across to the new installation. Depending upon the speed of the download, we could be up and running within around two hours. It’s going to be fun.

I started this blog at the time of the Vista RTM release and will be releasing my thoughts on Windows 7 in a proper working environment shortly after getting set up. I still have some misgivings re the start menu, and I don’t want anybody to think that I am giving in but, at the same time, I have to move on or get knocked around in the wake of the new release.

I still believe that an operating system should be properly user configurable, especially access to applications, and it is my hope that somebody will produce something that can bring back the classic style. If I had programming experience, I would give it a try myself, but I don’t do programming. If there was ever a time that I wish I had persevered with programming, it is now.

Users of Vista will not notice any penalties when upgrading to Windows 7 because their machines will carry the spec required. Their peripheral devices, being Vista compatible, will or should all work. Users of XP may well get Windows 7 running on older machines, but external device support is still going to hit hard, even though it is reputed that some stuff that didn’t work in Vista will actually work in Windows 7. Don’t hold your breath, because it will be a lottery, just as it was on November 17, 2006.  

Vista will be left behind by many for a reputation that it never really deserved. Yes, it required more of everything, and it would have been nice if peripheral device manufacturers would have supported it better from the start.

I was reminded last night while at a client location of some of the problems that computer users running Windows 9x would have if attempting to upgrade to XP. Memory was only 384mb, but the hard drive had been upped to 40gb. The printer was old as was the scanner. The best chance this computer has in its present state is to be upgraded to Windows 2000. I think that many have forgotten that a transition from Windows 9x to XP required the same kind of financial commitment as an XP to Vista upgrade.

I will keep Vista alive on an 80gb IDE drive as a backup OS and not dump it until such time as Windows 8 appears. MS Office will be replaced by Open Office as I intend to use MS Office on the Windows 7 installation. Microsoft may have jumped on the anti-Vista bandwagon and turned against Vista too, but I think that it was ok.

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