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Its Official: Windows 7 Beta Available

Microsoft last night officially released the first beta of its Windows 7 to MSDN and TechNet subscribers. The beta will be open to all testers sometime today afternoon.

logo_windows Windows 7 has been there Out in the Wild (Torrents, etc) since December. Windows 7 features and screen shots can be viewed here.

The release of the beta had been widely expected in recent days but CEO Steve Ballmer made it official Wednesday night in the opening keynote address at the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

In his CES keynote, Ballmer indicated that he wants a broad swath of users and developers to test Windows 7 Beta 1 Build 7000. “We are on track to deliver the best version of Windows ever, we are putting in all the right ingredients — simplicity, reliability and speed and working hard to get it right and to get it ready,” Ballmer said.

A recorded video of the keynote address can be viewed here.

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January 9, 2009 Posted by | Microsoft, Software, Technology | , , , | Leave a comment

First Look: Windows 7 (Pre Beta)

Microsoft has officially revealed the name of the successor to Windows Vista, and it’s not Vista II, ReVista or AltaVista. Its Windows 7. No definite release date for Windows 7 has been announced by Microsoft.

The shocking revelation on Microsoft’s Vista blog is that the final name of what we now call Windows 7 will be… Windows 7. Mike Nash, corporate vice-president, Windows Product Management, says: “Simply put, this is the seventh release of Windows, so therefore Windows 7 just makes sense.”

More screenshots of Windows 7 here:-
ZDNet Gallery
Windows7 News

So what’s in Windows 7?

The most visible new features are enhancements that streamline core Windows tasks like connecting to a wireless network or organizing a digital music collection. But the new OS features are more than just skin-deep; there are also improvements to core components, such as an innovative way to stream music and other media directly to network-connected media players.

Some of the tweaks to the Windows interface are blindingly obvious, at least in retrospect. Explorer windows now include a button that toggles the preview pane on and off; in Vista, you have to drill three levels deep into a menu to enable or disable the preview pane. Much cooler is the new technique for maximizing, restoring, and resizing a window. Drag the window’s title bar to the top of the screen and it maximizes. Drag the title bar of a maximized window away from the top of the screen and it restores to its former position. Drag a window to either side of the screen and it resizes to fill half the screen. Drag another window to the opposite side and, voila, you now have two windows arranged side by. side

Some other key enhancements-
For starters, the Quick Launch bar is gone; its capabilities are now integrated directly into the taskbar. If you recognize some similarities to the Dock in OS X, you’re half right.

You can permanently place program icons on the taskbar, where they allow one-click access to programs. Running programs appear on the taskbar as well.

You’ll find that other common tasks have been greatly simplified. For example, it;s now much easier to connect to a wireless network: when a wireless network is available, a tray icon glows. Click to pop up a list of available networks, and click again to choose a network and enter a passphrase or connect to a browser-based logon screen a a hotspot or airport.

Networking is tricky, especially for home users. With Vista, Microsoft tried to consolidate networking features in a single location, the Network and Sharing Center, with decidedly mixed results. In Windows 7, the Network and Sharing Center gets a radical overhaul designed to make it simpler to set up and manage small networks. In Windows 7, the Network and Sharing Center includes four links to common tasks instead of a long list of detailed options.

Homegroups also offer an interesting capability that digital media fanatics should love: From within Windows, you can stream media to any DLNA server or to a Media Center extender, without jumping through a bunch of configuration hoops.

Enterprise customers will have plenty of new stuff to chew on, as well. The PowerShell scripting language is part of Windows 7, as are a host of new troubleshooting and administration tools.  Special mention for the new Program Compatibility Troubleshooter, which lets you fix programs that fail to run correctly because of permission problems or hard-coded version checks.

BitLocker also gets a new features: the capability to encrypt the contents of a USB flash drive or other removable storage device. This is a logical extension of the BitLocker feature, which first appeared in Vista and was enhanced in Vista Service Pack 1 to allow encryption of hard disks other than the system volume.

Take a look at the Windows 7 Features, Screenshots & Demo in a YouTube video
[Youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B5D43p4_qcY]

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October 29, 2008 Posted by | Microsoft, Technology | , , , | 1 Comment