As you may or may not know, Windows 7 Release Candidate 1 has been officially handed out to MSDN and TechNet subscribers today, and there are plans to unleash the heavily-hyped OS to the waiting public at large come May 5th. We had a chance to sit down with reps from Microsoft to discuss the new iteration of Windows (and the company’s current frame of mind) more in-depth, and we’ve taken the new build for a bit of a spin around the block. Read on for an exploration into a few of the more delicious Windows 7 tidbits, as well as a full complement of our (potentially) enlightening observations. Continue reading »
With almost fully-functional versions of each product edition available to the public, I thought I’d provide a series of tables comparing each Windows 7 product editon.
It’s early yet, and things will no doubt change, so I’ll be updating these tables as needed going forward. But even at this early stage, I believe these tables will help you pick which Windows 7 product edition makes the most sense for you, based on your needs and wants. Let’s dive right in. Continue reading »
Windows 7 will support various popular multimedia codecs like Mpeg4, H.264 or AAC out of the box which reduces the codec finding troubles that some users experience when trying to play certain multimedia files in the Windows operating system. A Directshow developer for the ffdshow tryouts application took a closer look at how Windows 7 uses those codecs and discovered that Microsoft seems to have locked the use of alternative decoders in Windows Media Center and Windows Media Player for both the Mpeg4 and H264 format.
Even worse than this is that there is no way to override those locked codecs since those preferred codecs are owned by the TrustedInstaller user in the Windows Registry which means it is not possible to edit the settings even as a Windows 7 admin. The test has been conduced on build 7057 of Windows 7. The researcher thinks that it is unlikely that Microsoft will change the behavior in the soon to be released Windows 7 Release Candidate.
One reason for the protection of those codecs in Windows Media Center and Windows Media Player could be compatibility reasons. Third party multimedia players on the other hand are not affected or limited in any way by this.
On his MSDN blog, Shinobu Takahashi has posted screenshots of a very recent Windows 7 build. It is the first proof of a 706x build, but the changes aren’t very apparent from the screenshot. The build string is “7068.winmain.090321-1322,” which indicates that it was compiled less than a week ago: March 21, 2009, at 1:22 pm.
As you can see, Microsoft has started tweaking the gadgets it will offer by default with Vista’s successor.
With build 7068, we can clearly see that the CPU meter has gone from analog to digital, and that there is a new gadget for battery life. If you compare the Calendar gadget to the old one, you’ll see a ton of changes. Of course, there are more changes than just tweaks to the gadgets, and we’ll know more about those soon enough. Build 7068 was very close to leaking to the public, but I’m sure that this one, or a newer one, will leak before testers get the RC-escrow build next month. Continue reading »
Microsoft Corp. patched the first critical vulnerability in Windows 7 Tuesday as it rolled out an update that fixes three flaws in the new operating system’s kernel.
The MS09-006 update, which researchers tagged as the most serious of the three issued Tuesday and the one to patch first, includes a critical bug in the kernel’s processing of input delivered by the graphical device interface (GDI), the core graphics rendering component of Windows. Continue reading »
Starting February 24, we will be releasing up to 5 test updates to PCs running the Windows 7 Beta (Build 7000) via Windows Update. These updates allow us to test and verify our ability to deliver and manage the updating of Windows 7. We typically verify servicing scenarios during a beta.
Windows 7 Beta users will be notified that new updates are available beginning February 24 through Windows Update. Even if the user has Windows Update configured for automatic update – these test updates will not install automatically. Users will need to manually install the test updates through Windows Update. Continue reading »
Now that the Windows 7 Beta has been out for a while, I’d like to highlight how folks can try out Windows Touch, Windows 7’s new multi-touch capabilities. Continue reading »
Installing the Windows 7 Beta
Before you install Windows 7 beta, you should read this installation instructions that Microsoft has released. Continue reading »
“I’ve been really excited about getting my hands on the Windows 7 beta from everything that I heard about it. I finally got the official download link and installed it on my Acer Aspire One (1GB RAM, 160GB HD). It is just perfect so far. I had been running Vista Home Premium on here before, and honestly it was pretty good, but Windows 7 definitely installed faster, boots up faster, and is just smarter to use…” says one of the beta testers. Share your beta experience with the world.