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Windows 7
Jen
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April 17, 2009 - 6:37 pm
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I know some of you have downloaded the Windows 7 beta. Can you give us a report? I'd be especially interested in a compare-and-contrast between it and Vista. I am so aggravated with Vista that I am ready to chuck my PC out the Windows (get it? [Image Can Not Be Found] okay, not funny [Image Can Not Be Found]), and I really hope 7:Vista=XP:ME (math required).

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Steerpike
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April 17, 2009 - 8:26 pm
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I too would like to hear thoughts. I downloaded the beta, but was unable to get it working on my virtual machine, so I'm stuck with Vista for now. Enquiring minds want to know!

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

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Yapette
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April 17, 2009 - 9:03 pm
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I have it running on a cobbled together machine with pretty good parts and 2gb ram. My problem is I have no content on that computer. And no interest in doing so since the OS will be fairy dust in August/post beta.

I can report that on a spanking clean build with newly installed OS, nothing added but Firefox & Avast!, surfing the internet is dreamy-smooth.  As one might expect. [Image Can Not Be Found]

One reason I haven't done more with 7 is the learning curve. I've avoided Vista except for a prebuilt/"refurb" (i.e., deeply discounted) Dell laptop that I use mostly for casual gaming & surfing. So, I can't slide easily from Vista-->7 and the leap from XP was wtf is all this stuff?

I will say that my next build will have Windows 7. Initially Microsoft said no upgrades from XP (only Vista) but changed their mind(s). If I were using Vista all the time, I'd upgrade to 7 without hesitation. Plus, it's purdy.

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April 19, 2009 - 3:38 pm
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I've been running the public beta of Windows 7 since it became available.  I'm using it as my primary OS on my well-backed-up main machine and have run into very little to complain about.  It looks slick, runs snappy and has lots of little things that just make sense.  My only experience with Vista is on my wife's laptop and, while I liked Vista okay, Windows 7 seems like everything's been nicely polished and all the rough edges have been smoothed out.

Things I've done on Windows 7:  surfed the web endlessly, watched streaming video from Netflix and Hulu, installed and managed my entire mp3 collection (over 60GB of music), converted DVD's to movie files using Handbrake, and played just about every game I own with no problems.  I run Steam, download games from GOG.com, play adventures using ScummVM, do some Playstation emulation and I'm currently finishing FarCry 2.  I'm pretty sure that if it will run on Vista then it'll run on Windows 7.

This machine has all the important stuff backed up safely so if it went up in smoke I wouldn't cry over it.  That said, everything's been smooth for me.  The only minor complaints I've had is that Windows Media Player doesn't like my music files for some reason and seems to only recognize about half of my music.  If I use another program like Songbird then everything works fine.  Recently, when I restart my computer, Windows 7 doesn't immediately recognize my cable internet connection and has to do its automatic fix-it thingy.  It wasn't this way when I installed it at first so I'm pretty sure this one's my fault but I'm not sure what I did to it.

Other than that it's been great.  I have an EeePC 1000HE that's currently running XP.  I've been tempted to install the Windows 7 beta on it as I've heard it runs really well on netbooks.  If I take that plunge I'll report back.

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Yapette
Tangentistan
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May 5, 2009 - 11:07 am
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Steerpike: Flash News! Have I caught you before a complete wipeout & reinstall of Windows 7 RC (out today)?

Dwight Silverman, tech writer at Houston Chronicle, discusses how to reinstall RC over  the beta and provides step-by-step. Also mentions this version will be fully functional till March 2010 (expires in June) which sounds like a no-brainer reason to try it.

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Steerpike
Subtropical Southeastern Michigan
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May 5, 2009 - 11:24 am
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Alas, I'll be switching from Vista Home Premium and thus can't benefit from this - I downloaded the 7 beta but it didn't want to install correctly in a virtual machine, and I was hesitant to put a beta on my main computer. An RC, though, seems like it'll be worth the risk.

It's my Activity for the Evening. Stay tuned for dirty details!

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

Scout
Portland, Oregon
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May 5, 2009 - 12:25 pm
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I'm waiting to hear how this release runs on laptops. I have a stripped down, super lean custom XP build loaded on my Vaio SZ780 which works great but it would be cool to get it going on Windows 7. Hopefully the hardware driver issues have finally been smoothed out.

My desktop is over 3 years old and needs a huge refresh so I'll wait and just put Windows 7 on there when I do another build...this fall?

Jen
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May 5, 2009 - 1:35 pm
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Thanks for the feedback, everyone. I am tempted to download that RC but hesitant to put forth the effort. If any of you do it, please post back how well the OS works.

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Steerpike
Subtropical Southeastern Michigan
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May 5, 2009 - 8:30 pm
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So far so good - piece of cake to install, piece of cake to set up my local network, no complaints about apps yet. Only issue: it seems to lose its internet connection now and then, but so far a restart of the system/router has fixed it.

The interface is peculiar, at least as compared to what I'm used to. There is no Quick Launch bar and I can't find an elegant way to put all my commonly used apps in one place without taking up a bunch of space.

Haven't tried any gaming yet. Stay tuned.

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

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May 6, 2009 - 12:03 pm
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I haven't found any games that haven't run on Windows 7 so far.  I played through the entirety of Far Cry 2 on Steam, STALKER, Half-Life 2, Lord of the Rings Online.  All work great.

As far as your applications, drop them on the launchbar.  It took me a bit to get used to it but I love using it now.

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Helmut
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May 11, 2009 - 3:40 pm
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warning, I read a long time ago about direct sound platform changes in Vista (and of course W7) as described here. Do you use a feature rich sound card in W7 and if so, have you noticed any such thing? Of course, if you know if those games use OpenAL, that would be good to know too.

My Dark Souls single player sensibilities are protected by a +10 GfWL Firewall of Ineptitude

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Steerpike
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May 11, 2009 - 4:58 pm
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In my experience, sound seems to work normally, but often 3D effects or EAX are unavailable. I don't know why Microsoft insists on continuing with that behavior, but there you go.

Meanwhile, my own Windows 7 experience is going just fine. I've been quite pleased with its behavior, speed, and stability, and have yet to see much in the way of unexpected incompatibilities (older printers and such don't work, but that's more a 64-bit thing than a Windows 7 thing).

There are a few things I wish it could do, but all in all, very positive reaction so far.

Life is the misery we endure between disappointments.

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May 11, 2009 - 5:32 pm
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Helmut said:

warning, I read a long time ago about direct sound platform changes in Vista (and of course W7) as described here. Do you use a feature rich sound card in W7 and if so, have you noticed any such thing? Of course, if you know if those games use OpenAL, that would be good to know too.


My sound is all onboard audio so I'm not sure.

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